Some home builders are using a new strategy to attract female home buyers -- it's called woman-centric building. Builders are actively adding details they believe women want most in a home.
Let's face it, when it comes to home buying, women have a lot of pull. Not only are more single women buying homes on their own, but, once couples figure out their price range and start looking at homes within that price range, aren't women ultimately making the detail decisions from one home to the next?
When it comes to a home's look and features, women are opening up the closets and cupboards, getting a feel for the architectural aesthetics, and, most importantly, imagining our daily lives in the home and how life might be made easier.
All this got me thinking ... what do women want in a new home?
Well, I've been a woman long enough, and I think I have a pretty good idea.
Sure, great rooms, granite countertops, hardwood floors, energy-efficient windows, and kid-friendly lockers in the entryway are nice. Those are a given. But now that I know home builders really need to know what women want, here are the 26 Ultimate Features Women Want in a Home -- both real and imagined.
- Backyard garage. Why are those ugly car-holding vessels always mucking up the front of our homes?
- Gas fireplace. I don't chop wood.
- Luxury bathroom, preferably with a sunk-in tub, jets, and a sturdy door lock! (Calgon, take me away!)
- A soundproof bedroom. If it's good enough for Scarlett Johansson, then it's good enough for me. Oh wait, does that mean I can't hear my kids? That's right, baby.
- Flattering mirrors with the kind of lighting they use at Sephora!
- Soundproof rubber room. For birthday parties, sleepovers, and those nights you find them eating Kool-Aid powder by the spoonful.
- Flushable bathroom sinks, yes sinks, to wash down all their leftover toothpaste and whiskers and other creepy things.
- His & hers bathrooms. Theirs & hers works, too.
- A mommy-only room with an alarm system. Duh.
- Walk-in closet that has all those cool clothes, shoes, and accessory organizers. Double duh.
- A weed-free garden. What? Is that hard?
- Large mature trees. Cause I like tire swings and the world is a better place when I have what I like.
- A man servant. Obviously.
- Self-cleaning windows. Would a windshield wiper system work?
- Smart gadgets that make life easier -- think automatic pantry, porch, and entryway lights, central vacuums, under-cabinet vacuums that serve as dustpans (have you seen these?).
- A Lego Roomba, it goes room to room, picking up stray Legos. Has someone invented this yet?
- Sliding walls -- between rooms maybe but definitely to the backyard. So we can fully enjoy those nice days.
- TV and Internet attached to a treadmill. No more guilt when you gasp, "Puh-lease just go watch TV or surf the Internet ..."
- An in-home hair salon. Cause Madonna's gonna have one (pouts, stomps foot).
- An out-of-sight bonus room where you can hide all your husband's crap.
- Creative storage: cookie sheet cabinets, built-in spice racks, drawers for pots and pans in the kitchen, built-in, easy-sort recycling bins, easy-to-reach shelves, built-in bookcases, built-in banquets, desks, seating, and storage built into alcoves. Love this stuff.
- A modest number of bathrooms. Adding a bunch of extra bathrooms is NOT a selling point, in my opinion. It's hard enough to clean one or two.
- Solar power. Women like small utility bills.
- Great grandma's house fine tuned: A laundry chute from each room that all lead straight to the laundry room. A dumbwaiter -- I don't know what for, but I'm sure one would make my life better. Personally I want to bring the library ladder back, especially if builders insist on putting in those way-high storage cupboards women supposedly want (that's if we can reach them, builder people!).
- Less lighting. More windows and sky lights for natural lighting. Because of #23 and because it makes our skin look great.
- A Food-A-Rac-A-Cycle and a robot maid (with a built-in #16). Jane Jetson was so ahead of her time.
So tell us, if you were in the market for a new home, what feature would be your biggest selling point -- real or imagined?
Image via Jeremy Levine Design/Flickr