The 4 Key Traits of Today’s First-Time Homebuyers

by Peter Thomas Ricci

First-time homebuyers represent a hugely important swath of the homebuying public, and a new study has pinpointed some of their key characteristics.


First-time homebuyers serve an integral role in the U.S. housing market. Along with comprising between 30 and 40 percent of all home purchases, first-time homebuyers are also an essential component to the move-up buyer market, in that they purchase existing-homeowners’ starter properties and along those homeowners to move on to larger residences.

But today’s first-time homebuyers, who are primarily of the millennial, or Echo Boomer, generation, distinguish themselves from generation’s past in a number of interesting ways.

Ian Robinson, the branch manager for Coldwell Banker in Northbrook, said first-time homebuyers today are defined by their tech savviness and sense of urgency.

“Today’s first-time home buyer is very tech savvy, has access to virtually all the information agents do and does not have a lot of patience for agents that cannot move quickly and do business in the mobile world,” Robinson said. “Agents really need to focus on providing the service that these clients expect and desire; helping them interpret, filter, and augment the information the buyers are finding and make the process faster and less stressful for them.”

For further perspective on what makes today’s first-time homebuyers tick, check out our infographic below, which compiles the findings of a recent survey from the folks at Doorsteps:

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