NAHB’s latest Housing Trends Report shows that in the final quarter of 2020, 41% of prospective buyers were looking for a newly-built home — more than twice the 19% share registered a year earlier. Conversely, the share interested in an existing home declined from 40% to 30%, while the share indifferent to either type of home fell from 41% to 29%.
When broken down by generation, results show that 50% of millennial and 48% of Gen X buyers are looking to buy a new home. In contrast, 50% of boomers and 38% of Gen Z buyers would prefer to buy an existing home. Across regions, a majority of buyers in the Northeast (53%) and West (51%) would prefer a new home, far larger shares than in the South (33%) or the Midwest (24%). In fact, in the Midwest, a strong 46% plurality would prefer an existing home.
Rose Quint, NAHB assistant vice president of survey research, provides more analysis in this Eye on Housing post.