The spring and summer home buying season is kicking into full gear.  If you’re in the market for a new home, you’re probably thinking about what features are essential on your must-have list. Do you wonder if other home buyers are looking for the same things?

A recent survey from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reveals what consumers are looking for in their house hunting this year. Both first-time buyers and existing home owners were asked about the features they consider essential in their next home.

Nearly half of first-time home buyers rank these features among their top five must-haves: living room, laundry room, dining room, garage storage and a walk-in closet in the master bedroom. First-time buyers are also looking for a front porch, a 2-car garage and a double sink in the kitchen.

Are existing home owners looking for dramatically different features as they look to move up or downsize? In fact, their list of essential items includes many of the same preferences of first-time buyers. But they also are looking for more, including a patio, table space for eating in the kitchen, hardwood floors in the main level, Energy Star appliances and granite countertops in the kitchen.

Both sets of home buyers are continuing their commitment to energy efficiency in 2018. Energy-efficient features like low-E windows and Energy Star-certified appliances are among the popular desired features.

Home buyers also indicated their openness to joining the tiny home trend. NAHB found that 53 percent of respondents would consider purchasing a home of 600 square feet or less at some point during their lifetime. Perhaps not surprisingly, Gen Xers and millennials were much more open to the idea of a tiny house than baby boomers and seniors.

When you are hunting for your first home, or your next or forever home, be sure you put together your list of ‘wants’.  But keep in mind that you probably won’t find all of those in one home.  Unless of course you are going to finally build that dream home!  But that, is a story for another blog post.