Desired home features found on upscale homebuyer “Wish Lists”

Top home features the wealthy choose: A statistical analysis of home features that differentiated the preferences of upscale buyers from others.

The Economics and Housing Policy released a laser focused report on upscale home buyer preferences on home features, as they vary considerably from the general real estate buyer pool. What Home Buyers Really Want is based on a 2012 survey of new and potential home buyers in U.S. The study provides insight into buyer preferences for home type and size, room layout and design, kitchen and bathrooms, window and door products, accessibility, energy efficiency, location, outdoor features, electronics and technology in the home, including trade-offs buyers make. NAHB’s report on Top 10 Features for Upscale Homes tells up that a remodeled kitchen with a warming drawer tops the list.


The top ten home features that differentiated the preferences of upscale buyers from others include:

1. A kitchen warming drawer
2. Two story family room
3. Gourmet kitchens with a wine cooler
4. An outdoor kitchen for entertaining
5. Grand front entry foyers that are two stories
6. An elevator for the home’s interior
7. A custom wet bar
8. An exercise room
9. Home in golf course community
10, A Game room.
As lists go, having a cut off point of 10, meant that other top features home buyers really wanted missed mention in the first ten – this time by very narrow margins. Therefore, the following home features merit be noted too:

  • His & Her Bathrooms
  • Laundry Chute
  • An Outdoor Fireplace and Sitting Room
  • Adaptive Infrared Sensor-operated Faucets
  • Media Room.

Housing Economics explains that similar to a wine cooler, a warming drawer is one of the few kitchen features rated essential or wanted by less than 30 percent of all homebuyers. Viewing the category of home buyers at the $500,000 and above price range, 42 percent want a warming drawer, compared to only 15 percent of buyers expecting to pay under $150,000. For those asking why a warming drawer in the kitchen ranks as the #1 feature most appropriate in upscale homes, the answer may have to do the the fact that only 14 percent said they are unlikely to buy a house with a warming drawer.