According to statistics from the National Home Builders Association (NAHB), homeowners are looking less and less to buy bigger houses with fewer amenities — 14% fewer homeowners wanted a bigger house with fewer amenities in 2003 than they did in 2000. Almost two-thirds of those homeowners who were polled responded in 2003 that they would rather have a smaller house with high-quality products and amenities.
Much of this smaller-house trend involves the Baby Boomer generation. As more and more of them near (or reach) retirement, they have less of a need to own a big, empty nest, which can get harder and harder to maintain and clean as the aging process slows the Baby Boomers down. Oftentimes, Baby Boomers are looking for a new house – a smaller retirement house. At the same time, many Baby Boomers have accumulated quite a bit of wealth. And they’ve probably accumulated quite a bit of nostalgia. And those that have retired – as well as many who are slowing down as they near retirement – have accumulated quite a bit of free time.
But a lot of this smaller-house trend involves young urban professionals, as well. This is a group that’s wealthy, has fewer kids than in previous generations (thus freeing up some money), and they’re a group that likes to live in or near urban areas – where larger houses are less of an option. This is a group that is well-educated, knows a thing or two about art trends and art history, and makes it a point to make careful, educated decisions.
One end result of this smaller-house, more-money trend is that people are spending more money on fewer pieces of well-chosen home decor. A sense of style is fundamental to the decisions made by Baby Boomers and young urban professionals when they buy home decor. Whether it’s rustic Old-World style decor, or more modern/postmodern decor, people are looking for a cohesive style – oftentimes one that ties the interior and exterior design of their house together with the decorations and furnishings.
Cristobal is a copywriter, copyeditor, and internet marketer based in Houston, Texas. He enjoys skiing, college football, and good design. Here are his current projects:
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