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Oct 07 2021
The majority of young consumers want to put more effort into decorating their spaces—but what do they want those homes to be like?
Gen Z and Millennials were already homebodies before the pandemic began, but they spent even more time inside of their homes in the last year. YPulse’s 2020 No Place Like Home trend research explored how quarantined young consumers spent more of their time and money fixing up their homes and making them cozy for lockdowns, and our recent Shopping for the Home behavioral report found that the majority (91%) of 13-39-year-olds spent money on their homes last year. Our new research also found that 51% of 13-39-year-olds plan to spend most of their time at home, even after the threat of COVID-19 has completely passed—suggesting that the trend of investing to make their living quarters comfy is expected to continue well into the new year and beyond. After all, 78% of 13-39-year-olds tell us they want to put more effort into decorating their home / apartment, while 87% say they plan to buy something for their home in the next year. But what exactly do they want their homes to be like?
Our behavioral survey looks at young consumers’ current feelings around home, what they want to buy for their spaces next, the types of home furnishings they’re looking to purchase, and brands helping young consumers create the sanctuaries they crave. Here are four stats that show what Gen Z and Millennials want out of their home spaces:
A third of young consumers define their home decorating aesthetic as modern.
From maximalism to goth clutter, some home trends that were on the rise among young people in the last year hinted that a minimalist modern look may be on the way out. But 34% of 13-39-year-olds tell us they would describe their home decorating aesthetic as modern, making it the top decorating style among Gen Z and Millennials, and showing that many still prefer to keep it contemporary. Modern-style décor, which our data found is popular among all age groups, follows a simple and uncluttered design with furnishings that celebrate “natural materials, neutral or earthy colors, and the elimination of unnecessary detailing,” and often features mostly monochromatic colors which aligns with the over half of 13-39-year-olds who say they want to own less stuff and the many who say they prefer white neutral paint colors for their space to bold colors. That many young consumers define their home decorating aesthetic as modern could have to do with the fact that…
The majority of young consumers describe their ideal home as a place to relax.
The last year has been especially difficult for young people, causing them to prioritize their mental health and well-being—and of course they’d want their homes to be a place for them to be able to find solace. The majority of 13-39-year-olds say their ideal home is a place to relax, and“calming” is the second most popular response. Last year’s No Place Like Home trend report found that 72% of 13-39-year-olds say their home has been an important part of maintaining their mental health during COVID, while 46% of 13-39-year-olds said they were more interested in creating a better space in their home to relax—and that percentage has clearly increased this year. The same trend research found that 83% of 13-39-year-olds believed their home has provided them with comfort during this time. But it doesn’t end there: 41% of 13-39-year-olds say they are interested in having a meditation room, showing some young people actually want a designated room to partake in self-care and wellness practices that can help them feel even more relaxed. And that has been apparent in their house hunting: According to a study from COGNITION Smart Data (CDS) for Green Builder Media, wellness is top of mind for Millennial home buyers/renters, and smart home technology, home fitness spaces, large yards, and spaces for entertaining/community building are features they’re looking for to compliment their “healthy home” mindset. The CDS noted that Millennials have “seized the top influencer position in the housing sector, spending more money on buying and remodeling homes than any other audience segment.”
More than half of young consumers want their homes to look good for social media.
Gen Z and Millennials grew up on social media and it’s influenced a lot of things in their lives, including how good their ‘fits and food look on their feeds, so there’s no exception when it comes to their homes. Fifty-six percent of 13-39-year-olds say everything in their home should be beautiful so it looks good in pictures for social media. Social media is also where Gen Z and Millennials are finding home décor for their spaces, with Instagram and Pinterest the top social media platforms for this inspo. Last year, Pinterest added a new shopping capability to their Lens visual search feature which allows mobile users to scan products they see around them, and search for them on the app. The platform reported that 83% of Pinterest users bought products based on brands they saw on its platform while around half of the items snapped through Lens belong to the fashion or home decor category, with some of the top-shopped products being vases, mirrors, rugs, and throw pillows—some of which are the products young consumers tell us they plan to buy for their home in the next year. TikTok is also starting to become a social platform that Gen Z is turning to for home décor ideas—and some brands have taken notice: Over the summer, Walmart started 4walls, a TikTok channel dedicated to interior design, which features both paid and organic content full of trend-driven and DIY videos. And with no single retailer owning the home/interior design market on TikTok yet, Walmart’s new channel hopes to be a go-to destination for Gen Z customers who are decorating their first homes, apartments, and college dorms.
More than half of young consumers want a workout / fitness room in their home.
There’s no doubt that the way young people work out has changed during the pandemic. Gyms and fitness centers took a hit early on—and with more people staying at home to protect themselves and stop the spread of COVID in the last year, working out moved home as well. And it’s clearly impacted what Gen Z and Millennials want out of their homes: 58% of 13-39-year-olds say they are interested in having a workout / fitness room. A TD Ameritrade survey found that 59% of Americans don’t plan on returning to their gym after the pandemic, while our recent fitness behavioral data which found that half of 13-39-year-olds would rather work out at home. The same research shows that over a third of 13-39-year-olds work out with at-home fitness equipment—and products like dumbbells, yoga blocks, Pilates rings, and yes, Peloton exercise bikes saw an increase in demand last year. According to a Fortune Business Insights™ report, the home fitness industry is expected to grow from $11 billion in 2021 to $15 billion by 2028, and with most Millennials not planning to return to the gym post-COVID, it makes sense that they would want their own workout / fitness room to not only work out in peace but to stick all of their equipment in.
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