The American Home: Five Trends You
American homeownership is changing. Not long ago, seven in 10
American adults were homeowners (2004). Today, two-thirds enjoy
the comforts of owning a home. The forecast is for a continued decline –
to 62 percent by 2020.
So, what do you need to know to market to the American home today?
One: Singles account for about one-third of all home buyers.
When the Silent Generation was 18-to-24-years-old, 54 percent of
them were married. Today, only 21 percent of Gen Y 18-to-24-year-
olds are married. Consider how your product mix, merchandising
and marketing programs should change to successfully target single
homeowners. Are your products suitable to singles? Are you advertising
in the right places? Do your store layout and merchandising strategies
reach out to the single homeowner?
Two: More than one in five home buyers is a single woman,
according to The Joint Center for Housing Studies. Twice as many
unmarried women are buying homes as single men. She works, she
entertains. She cooks, she cleans. She dines with friends and family
at her house, she eats alone. Are you servicing all her needs?
Three: Think small. With homeownership on the decline, the natural
outcome is a rise in rentals. We live in a space-saving age. Small spaces
need small solutions. Even within larger homes, the buying frenzy of the
’80s and ’90s has left us bursting at the seams. Two significant product
trends that are on the rise and will continue to gain momentum are
items that stack and nest, and items that are multifunctional. I recently
downsized and found myself without some staple kitchen appliances.
I was pleasantly surprised to find a compact 3-in- 1 hand-mixer made
by Oster … with a change of attachments and a twist of the handle, my
beater now converts to a drink mixer. Not only that, it’s cordless. That
purchase decision became a no-brainer. I saved money (by buying one