Location, Square Footage Most Important to Buyers in 2022

By Kelly Leighton | May 2, 2022 | 2 min. read

Twenty-one percent of first-time homebuyers expect their first home to be their dream home.

According to Mortgage Cadence, 28% of people plan to move this year, with 10% planning to buy. The last two years have had an impact on most consumers’ living situations, with 41% reporting it made them reconsider where they live and 40% reporting the pandemic influences their decision to move.

What are buyers looking for? Sixty-one percent of buyers said the features and amenities are their biggest priority when looking for a home. Location is key to 88%, followed by square footage at 73%, both topping listing price, which 68% cited as a top feature.

After homes hit record-breaking prices in 2021, a trend that has continued into 2022, it’s no surprise that most homebuyers think prices will keep rising. More than three-quarters (78%) said they think homes will be less affordable this year, with 77% reporting they are concerned about rising home prices and 72% reporting they are concerned about rising interest rates. Twenty-six percent said they would be less likely to buy a home if rates go up.

While it seems as though buyers are anticipating high home prices, they may encounter some sticker shock. Realtor.com® has the current median price for a home at $405,000, which is above more than 59% of buyers’ budgets. Not surprisingly, 64% of potential buyers said they could not afford to buy a home this year and 24% are not sure if they will ever be able to afford to buy one.

However, don’t discount fixer-uppers, 42% said they would be interested in a home that needs a little TLC.

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