Generations Cite Their Must-Have Kitchen and Bath Features


Home buyer preferences for kitchen and bath features can vary significantly by generations, according to survey results from NAHB’s recent study, What Home Buyers Really Want, 2021 Edition.

For instance, some bath features are significantly more popular among younger buyers. The leading example is dual toilets in the primary bath, a feature rated essential or desirable by 48% of millennials (born 1980 to 1996) and 50% of Gen X (born 1965 to 1979) buyers, but only by 20% of the older group of baby boomers (born 1946 to 1964). Similarly, while at least half of the younger two generations want to have “his & her” baths, a skylight in the primary bath, and a bidet, the share of boomers interested in these features only ranges from 25-35%.


When it comes to kitchens, younger and older buyers once again exhibit different wants. Millennial and Gen X buyers are more likely to desire certain kitchen features than their boomer counterparts, by a margin of 25 percentage points in some cases.

For example, a steam oven is desirable or essential to 51% of millennials and to 47% of Gen X buyers, but only to 19% of boomers — a 32-point difference between the youngest and oldest buyers.

Likewise, more than 50% of the younger two generations would be positively influenced to purchase a home if the kitchen included a trash compactor, a wine cooler, a central island with range and a double island.

In contrast, the share of boomers who want those features only ranges from 25-37%.

These generational differences for kitchen and bath features are all statistically significant after controlling for a number of other factors, particularly the income and household composition of the buyers.

NAHB Senior Economist Paul Emrath provides more analysis on buyer preferences in these Eye on Housing blog posts regarding kitchens and baths.

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