If you’ve ever bought or sold a house while having kids at home, then you probably know how much they can influence decisions. Families with children often have very specific needs and challenges that families without kids may not face. The National Association of Realtors highlights many of the homebuying differences between families with and without kids in its 2018 Moving With Kids report – and we’ve rounded up a few key takeaways to share.
It’s probably not surprising to learn that neighborhoods matter to most homebuyers, and especially to those with children. The biggest influence in quality of neighborhoods boils down to school districts; 50% of buyers with children in the home reported that the quality of school districts is an important factor when purchasing a home, compared to only 11% of families without children at home. Similarly, 45% of homebuyers with children said convenience to schools is important, whereas only 6% of buyers without children valued convenience to schools.
Finding the right property is a difficult step in the process for all homebuyers, with or without children. But size proves to be an even more important factor for families with kids at home; for sellers with children under 18 years old, 24% sold a house because they felt it was too small. Buyers with children also tend to purchase larger homes – on average around 2,100 square feet — as opposed to buyers without children, who tend to purchase homes around 1,750 square feet. The number of bedrooms is of importance here, too. Families with children tend to purchase homes with an average of four bedrooms, compared to the three-bedroom average among homebuyers without children.
For nearly a third of homebuyers with children, the homebuying process was delayed due to child care expenses. Because child-related expenses can be costly and take priority over everything else, sacrifices are often made when it comes to finding the perfect home. The biggest sacrifice made by homebuyers with children related to the size of home, followed closely by the price of home. Commute distance, condition of homes, and styles of homes were also sacrificed by nearly 25% of homebuyers with children.
More than 25% of home sellers with children living at home reported selling their homes out of urgency, compared to only 14% of sellers without children at home. More than half of sellers without children were able to take their time and wait for the right offer to come in, but only 31% of sellers with children were able to wait for an offer, and instead opted to sell their homes as quickly as possible. Many factors could play into this, including the start of a school year, general inconveniences sellers with children face when it comes to house showings, and pressures that sellers feel about disrupting their family’s lifestyle during the home buying and selling process.
Whether or not you have children at home, keeping these factors in mind when selling a house is critical in attracting the right buyer – many of whom do have children. To learn more about your options when it comes time to buy or sell a home, get in touch with a pro at Mr. Cooper.