Doom for Suburban McMansions?

Check this out:

“A new survey by the Urban Land Institute’s Terwilliger Center for Housing shows that about 60 percent of the millennial generation say they prefer a mix of housing choices and prefer to be near shops, restaurants, offices, and transit. Seventy-five percent of Millennials say they value walkability. Of the 63 percent of Millennials who say they plan to move within the next five years, about 40 percent say they expect to move to multifamily housing.”

Some people say that the suburban type McMansions may be out of style for the millennial generation.  I say this survey was a total waste of time.



1.  The main reason is because no generation has ever wanted the things their parents had when they were that young.  That is why you don’t see 22-32 years olds driving Buicks or 7 passenger SUV’s.  When these 22-32 year olds are 42-52, they will want a large house in a quiet, safe area for their kids to grow up in……and yeah, most will want that house to be on a cul-de-sac.

2.  I would think any group with a name like Urban Land Institute maaaaaaaaaay have a slight bias in how they designed the survey.

3.  I am NOT seeing this with the buyer’s I work with in this age group.  In Lexington, most of the time they want a newer house that doesn’t need a lot of work.   Due to their budget, most end up with a suburban type starter home just like every generation has mostly done for decades.  The ones that want an older house tend to land in Gardenside, Southland or Garden Springs.  The mid-century houses well inside New Circle is about as close to this as I am seeing…….and those neighborhoods were the suburban sprawl of the 50’s and 60’s that are now considered to be a central location.

4.  To be a little more specific to the Lexington Market, we don’t really have much that fits that description at a price point that is accessible to your average 22-32 year old.  Most cannot afford Chevy Chase or anything else in the 40502 zip code, and the affordable parts of downtown are still a bit scary to most buyers.



In Lexington at least, the suburban style move-up homes and McMansions are safe.  Lexington is more of a large town than a small city.  While we have more options than ever for something like the millennials described, we still don’t have a lot.

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