While homebuyers look for homes of all different shapes and sizes, data reveals that most of them have one major thing in common.
Here’s a clue: They typically have four legs and they can have a major impact on a buyer’s decision.
A recent survey from Realtor.com revealed that 80% of the 1,000 recent homebuyers surveyed were pet owners, and 79% said they would pass up a dream home if it didn’t work for their pet.
Furthermore, 87% of the homeowners with pets said they took their pets’ needs into account when searching for a home, even as many as 90% stating that their animals’ needs were essential to their decision of purchasing a home.
“Dogs are man’s best friend,” Realtor.com Chief Economist Danielle Hale said. “It’s not terribly surprising that when pet owners are buying a home, their best friends get what they want. If a home doesn’t meet the needs of their pets, those needs are non-negotiable for a lot of homebuyers.”
The survey revealed that dogs particularly were an owner favorite leading with 64%, followed by cats with 41%, birds with 12% and fish with a 1% ownership percentage.
The survey also indicated that younger buyers and families with small children were more likely to be pet owners.
This is especially important as First American’s Real Estate Sentiment Index survey of title agents and real estate professionals revealed that nearly 87% of first-time homebuyers were Millennials.
This could mean that young prospective homebuyers might be on the lookout for homes that suit the needs for their four-legged friends.
The Realtor.com survey found that home features are especially important for pet owners. When asked to rank the three home features they considered to be the most important for their pets, 45% said a large yard, 36% said outdoor space and 33% said garage space. These features either influenced their decision to move or look elsewhere.
“It’s heartwarming to find that people will put their pets’ needs first, even when it comes to one of the biggest financial decisions they will ever make,” Realtor.com Chief Marketing Officer Nate Johnson said. “This survey shows that we really do consider pets part of the family – and that their needs are a critical part of finding the perfect home.”