eNews Subscribe to eNews

A kitchen in a model T-Select home. Photo courtesy of Toll Brothers.

Meet the McMansion for Millennials

Monday, August 7, 2017

Builders trying to lure a new generation into the real estate market are taking luxury downscale.

There’s been much wailing and gnashing of teeth in the real estate industry over what insiders see as a distressing trend among Millennials: They aren’t buying houses at nearly the same rate as generations before them.

“Over the next seven years, there are 10 million Millennials who will turn 31, the most common age at which Americans buy their first home,” says Kevin Gillen, senior research fellow at Drexel University’s Lindy Institute for Urban Innovation. “However, as a group, the Millennials have a negative savings rate – they collectively owe more in debt than they have in wealth and income.”

In fact, a recent survey by ApartmentList.com found that 78% of Philly Millennials plan to buy a home, but 72% of them are holding off because they can’t afford to. And it’s not just debt that keeps them on the sidelines – there’s also a shortage of homes at prices they can afford.

Stepping into this breach are luxury homebuilders, of all people, including Horsham-based Toll Brothers, one of the largest such developers in the country. The company, eager to build brand loyalty among future buyers, has been branching out into rental and student housing – and now is aiming to bring young buyers into the fold with a new slate of lower-priced homes. The T-Select line is currently under construction in the Houston and Philly markets.

The homes – set to go to market here by year’s end – are aimed not just at Millennials but at first-time and move-up buyers of all kinds, says Chuck Breder, president of Toll’s Eastern Pennsylvania division. “It’s still the Toll luxury experience,” he says, but with fewer custom features, less square footage, and prices that start in the low to mid-$300s, 20 to 30% below a typical Toll home. “The choices are more limited than in our typical product,” Breder adds, “but we still offer several packages of standard and upgraded features.”

The new local developments, near the Hatboro and Colmar train stations, are townhouse projects. (Single-family projects are planned for the future.) These first projects may well prove attractive to Millennials, who prefer easy access to public transit and, as Jake Dreyfus, of the Philly/Jersey Living team at Keller Williams Realty, says, any location that offers a chance to “conveniently work and play.” Of course, he adds, “Focusing on the price point is certainly a necessary part of the recipe.”

And while $350,000 may not be the bargain-basement price Millennials are hoping for, at least some of these next-generation buyers could get a little help from their parents.

Published in the August 2017 issue of Philadelphia magazine. 
Read more at www.phillymag.com.

More eNews

Summer Classics Buys Building in LaVilla, Florida

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

A national manufacturer and retailer of high-end outdoor furniture is helping set the tone for redevelopment in LaVilla. Summer Classics last week purchased the 12,000 sq. ft. building at 1104 W. Adams St. for $1.2 million. It will be used as a retail...

» Continue

Napoleon Introduces True See-Through Electric Fireplace

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

A leader in the hearth industry for more than 40 years, Napoleon continues to bring innovative technology to the category, most recently with the launch of its CLEARion See Thru Electric Fireplace. Now available for purchase, the unique fireplace is the...

» Continue

Phifer Introduces Online Tool to Preview Fabrics

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Phifer Incorporated is excited to launch a new online tool designed to take the guesswork – and stress – out of choosing the perfect fabric to adorn outdoor settings. The new Outdoor Fabric Visualizer simplifies what can be a confusing if...

» Continue

Memphis Wood Fire Grills Hires David Carpenter

Friday, December 8, 2017

Memphis Wood Fire Grills has hired David Carpenter as the Northeastern Territory Representative. He brings years of experience to Memphis Grills from the Solar Industry as both a Regional Sales manager and as a Sales consultant. An avid foodie, Carpenter...

» Continue