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4/24/2013 - Homebuyers highly value spaciousness

Nearly 80 percent of buyers today buy a home with a garage, particularly among new-home buyers.

When consumers buy or are interested in purchasing a home of their own, one of the biggest factors that helps determine the place that they'll ultimately choose is how much storage space it has, according to a new poll.

In its "Profile of Buyers Home Preferences" report, the National Association of Realtors points out that many of today's homeowners purchase a home, cognizant of the room that's available for packing things away.

Paul Bishop, vice president of research at NAR, noted that even after consumers purchase a place that they like, the longer they live there, they'll often wish there was more unoccupied territory for storage.

"Most satisfied homeowners still said they would like more or larger closets and storage space," said Bishop. "In addition, nearly half of recent buyers would prefer a larger kitchen, and two out of five would prefer a larger home overall."

Gary Thomas, NAR president, added that there are numerous elements to a prospective home that home shoppers weigh before deciding, but some factors have more significance than others.

"Buyers need to have a clear idea of what features are important to them and know where they are willing to compromise," said Thomas.

One in 10 homeowners rent a storage closet
This may explain why so many people today rent storage units, as statistics from the Self Storage Association reveal that one-tenth of all households supplement their property with an off-location storage facility. The Insurance Information Institute reminds renters of these units that they may have coverage on their current homeowners insurance policy that provides them with protection should their items be lost or stolen. This can help them save money by avoiding paying for coverage through the rental unit provider.

Other factors suggesting homeowners place a high priority on storage, according to the NAR poll, is that nearly 80 percent of buyers today buy a home with a garage, particularly among new-home buyers. In addition, four in 10 buyers also purchased a home that had a basement, with Southerners favoring cellars that are large.

But even if a home has a garage and basement and plenty of closet space, homeowners have no compunctions about taking on remodeling projects. NAR notes that within three months of a home purchase, more than half of respondents took on some type of home improvement undertaking, usually redesigning either the kitchen or the bathroom.

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