Millennials Lead Charge to Revamp Aging Housing Stock

Couple standing in kitchen in new house

© Roberto Westbrook - Getty Images

The country’s aging housing stock is prompting homeowners to make more home renovations, particularly among younger owners who have faced limited housing inventories for sale. Nearly half of U.S. homeowners plan to upgrade or remodel their homes this year, according to a new survey from LendingHome, a lender to real estate investors.

But it’s younger homeowners, between the ages of 25 to 44, who are undertaking most renovations and looking to bring new trends and renovations to the aging homes they purchase.

Two-thirds of the U.S. housing stock is more than 30 years old, according to LendingHome. “Our ability to refresh those homes and make them ready for another generation of families is critically important,” said Michael Bourque, LendingHome CEO.

Millennial homeowners are taking on most of the renovation projects: 63% of respondents 25 to 34 years old are planning to upgrade or remodel their homes this year. That compares with 58% of those who are 35 to 44 years old planning similar activity, according to LendingHome.

Home Style, Renovation Preferences

Homeowners are appreciating older home styles. Americans who purchase vintage homes say they’re most swayed by the character of the house (40%) and the layout (27%). Others (22%) say they look for a specific characteristic, like a fireplace or hardwood floors, according to the LendingHome survey.

The survey found some of the following vintage home styles to be favored the most:

  • Modernist
  • Victorian
  • Colonial
  • Bungalow

For major renovation projects, such as kitchen and bathroom renovations, homeowners are likely to contract work out. But the top three upgrades that Americans say they’re willing to handle themselves are:

  • Minor facelifts, like flooring and paint (57%)
  • Outdoor space improvements (54%)
  • Bedroom upgrades (53%)