Gen Z Homebuyer Research Highlights Housing Needs

Clayton research Gen Z homebuyer

Clayton Publishes New Generation Z Housing and Consumer Research Findings on Flexible Floor Plans, Sustainability Trends

Clayton, a national homebuilder of site-built and off-site built homes, recently conducted a study about the housing needs and preferences for the youngest generation of consumers, with supporting insights on Gen Z from US MONITOR syndicated research by Kantar on consumers’ attitudes and values.

Generation Z, or the Gen Z homebuyer, represents people born between 1997 to 2010. They are the most racially diverse generation in the U.S. and currently makeup 18% of the population, according to 2018 data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

With the oldest of Gen Z consumers now in their early 20s, many are starting to consider their future housing preferences. And the generation represents a powerful and outspoken group of customers, possessing a 2018 estimate of over $198 billion in collective consumer spending power, according to figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Bureau of Economic Analysis.

“The U.S. housing industry is currently experiencing very low interest rates, high demand and inventory shortages during a time when families and individuals are seeking homeownership as a solution for comfort and security,” said Kevin Clayton, CEO of Clayton. “Gen Z, the youngest generation of home buyers, passionately understands the importance of choosing the right products and brands to serve their needs, and that also applies to choice in housing.”

4 Key Insights from Younger Buyers… they want

A Variety of Floor Plan Options

An internal Clayton research study, Home Built to Take Care of Me, Spring 2020, shows the household composition is shifting – there is a decrease of traditional nuclear family households. Therefore, buyers could seek flexible options outside of the traditional 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom layout. 

Technology in the Home

Clayton also concluded in its study that 74% of those in their 20s say technology makes their home easier to live in, compared to 68% of all adults.

More Flex Spaces

More than 60% of homebuyers in their 20s report it is very important that their home can adapt to their changing lifestyles and life stages to come, according to the Clayton research study.  For example, many Clayton off-site built homes come with floor plan options for work from home office spaces, creative areas or additional bedrooms.

Sustainability is Key

Kantar’s 2020 US MONITOR reports that if a product costs and performs the same, 71% of Gen Z buyers will always choose one that is more environmentally friendly, versus 56% of the rest of consumers. The optional EnergySmart™ Home Package upgrade is an example of a series of energy-efficient standards like additional insulation, sealed ductwork, and Low-E windows a home buyer can purchase with their new home.

“Gen Z is growing up in a world of volatility, unpredictability and untold lifestyle choices that create both anxiety and possibility – shaping values that will last a lifetime”, says Ann Clurman, partner and generations expert at Kantar. “They have grounded realistic expectations for themselves and are learning to value being financially responsible, circumspect and ethical when it comes to living their lives.”

Since COVID-19, America has entered an economic downturn and homebuyers are having to reconsider how they work, attend school, shop, and invest their spending money. Off-site built homes, which include manufactured, modular, and CrossMod homes, are providing new solutions for today’s youngest generation of homebuyers through a variety of design options, built-in technology, flexible floor plans, and energy efficiency home features – options Gen Z buyers want and expect in their homes.

Every Clayton Built® home comes with technology buyers crave such as, Kwikset® SmartKey Security to allow homeowners the ability to quickly reset their house keys and an ecobee® smart thermostat, which can seamlessly integrate with several smart home systems like Apple® HomeKit and Amazon® Alexa®. Additionally, flex spaces in the homes allow homeowners to choose how they wish to use specific spaces at different times – for example, a gaming room, craft space, guest bedroom, nursery, or home office.

Clayton off-site built homes are built with sustainability in mind. Every off-site built home is constructed inside of an ISO-14001 certified home building facility, where green building standards help regulate better recycling, energy usage, and landfill waste diversion.

To learn more about the Gen Z Home Buyer, please view Clayton’s helpful infographic on this generation’s preferences and trends

Gen Z Homebuyer infographic