These Home Features Make Buyers Swoon

February 14, 2020

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House hunters tend to fall head over heels for homes that offer up attractive storage space, private backyards, man caves and she sheds, and plenty of more. In a new analysis by®, researchers scanned keyword home search data in each state to find the regional must-have features for those shopping for a home.

For example, Oklahoma residents tend to fall for “storm shelters,” Californians love “solar polar,” and Hawaiians desire “fee simple” (homes where they own the land and building). Washington, D.C., buyers want to live near the Metro, the city’s public transportation system, while Pennsylvanians are hot for parking and New Yorkers desire a balcony.

“While some of the country’s most-loved home features, such as accessory dwelling units or lakefront properties, will likely fetch a premium on the open market, others are more matters of the heart,” says George Ratiu,®’s senior economist. “Maybe you grew up in a certain style of home or have always dreamed of having a big yard—everyone’s vision of home is unique and being able to search for what makes a house perfect for you can help you find true love in a new home.”

Overall, the top desired features among states included alternative living spaces, such as man caves, she sheds, workshops, granny pods or accessory dwelling units, casita, barns, or RV parking. Residents rated those at the top in Arizona, Idaho, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, Utah, and Washington.

Many buyers also are on the hunt for privacy and big backyards too. Home buyers in six states rated this high, including in Alaska, Illinois, Iowa, Vermont, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. They desired acreage, fenced in yards, room for horses, or a country setting that provided distance from their neighbors.

Several buyers are also falling in love with the idea of single-story living. Residents in nine states swooned over listings that included first-floor masters, ranches, rambler, and single-level living: Colorado, Delaware, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, North Dakota, Ohio, Rhode Island, and Virginia.

Also, water views certainly are beguiling to buyers. Six states ranked this feature highly—Arkansas, Florida, Minnesota, Missouri, Tennessee, and West Virginia. Buyers in these states were on the hunt for a beautiful view, such as a lake view, canal, dock, lakeshore, or river access.