Economists' Outlook

Housing stats and analysis from NAR's research experts.

Primary Reason for the Recent Home Purchase

  • The primary reason for purchasing a home was the desire to own a home—more than one-quarter of home buyers cited this reason in 2011; while this remains the most cited reason among all types of buyers, it has decreased in prominence from 2010.
  • The primary reason to purchase a home among repeat buyers is often because of life changes: the desire for a larger home, a job-relocation or move, desire to be closer to family and friends, or a change in a family situation. Among ages of home buyers there are also shifts from the younger ages where buyers want to own a home of their own, to older ages where a change is taking place so they need to upgrade, downgrade or perhaps move cities for a job-related relocation.
  • The primary reason for the timing of the home purchase remains that it was just the right time to buy and the buyer felt ready to buy a home. Affordability is the second most common reason among all buyers; however, affordability has decreased in prominence in both repeat and first-time buyers. Affordability as a reason for the timing of the home purchase also changed based on age. Younger buyers placed a higher priority on affordability, while older buyers were more likely to purchase a home because they had to make the purchase when they did.
  • For more information, please visit our Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers page.

Notice: The information on this page may not be current. The archive is a collection of content previously published on one or more NAR web properties. Archive pages are not updated and may no longer be accurate. Users must independently verify the accuracy and currency of the information found here. The National Association of REALTORS® disclaims all liability for any loss or injury resulting from the use of the information or data found on this page.

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