Millennials Rule The Housing Market and They Know What They Want

As you may have seen in our housing market predictions for 2017, Millennials are taking over the homebuyer market for this year, as they have been for the past few years. The misconception has been that Millennials are more focused on renting and shy away from purchasing a home. In fact, according to the National Association of Realtors, this is the fourth consecutive year where Millennials make up the largest sector of homebuyers — 34% of the market to be exact. So chances are, if you’re reading this article, we are talking about you!


Although Millennials are not reluctant about purchasing homes this year, they are entering the home buying market later than previous generations due to changes in the economy. According to an article from NBC News, most of the Millennials looking to purchase a home are first time buyers who are more focused on monthly payment cost than the full price of a home, because they see it as a long-term investment. In many cases, the want to invest in a long term or “forever” home may coincide with the want to start a family. Since this means bypassing a starter home, many homebuyers in this generation want a larger home that they will not outgrow in a few years time.


If we are talking about location, a lot of Millennial homebuyers today have already rented in cities or a city-like setting, so they are looking to the suburbs to purchase a home. An ideal home needs to have 3-4 bedrooms, and plenty of square footage; they are interested in more square footage than older generations look for. Another must-have feature is great outdoor spaces, which is always a priority here at Miller & Smith.


Another trend that is noticeable with this generation is that they are using technology to find homes, rather than going straight to an expert. Not to say that real estate agents are eliminated from the equation, but they are more commonly hired for their expertise in the actual transaction rather than the search for a home. Nela Richardson, a chief economist at Redfin, told NBC News that Millennials are leaving no stone unturned when it comes to getting a deal, whether it is negotiating an agent’s commission, or getting a break on closing costs.


If you are a first-time homebuyer (Millennial or not), be sure to check out, a simple website for your home search. This new website from Zillow Group focuses on the complete cost of purchasing a home, such as including HOA, broker fees, etc. Plus, you can customize your home search by monthly payment or total cost.


Millennials know what they want in a home, and we are here to give it to them! Visit our website to learn more about all new homes from Miller & Smith in Virginia and Maryland.




Tips for Hosting a Birthday Bash in Your Miller & Smith Home

It’s your birthday; so celebrate like you want to in your brand new Miller & Smith home! Our homes are the perfect spot for hosting a party, especially when you are planning to celebrate a birthday, whether it’s for you or the kids! Send out those invites, hang the streamers, blow up the balloons, and see some of our tips for hosting the best birthday bash in your Miller & Smith home.


Be Prepared

There’s no way to know what might happen at a birthday party (cake fight, your uncle singing karaoke) but you can stock up on most items ahead of time for those unpredictable moments! All of our homes at Miller & Smith have ample storage space, whether it’s kitchen cabinets, closets, or the garage. Make sure you have extra napkins and paper towels on hand, as well as cups, plates, or any other essential hosting supplies.


Take Advantage of Space

Our Miller & Smith homes were designed with you and your family and friends in mind. The open floor plans are perfect for mingling with guests and having everyone gather around to watch you open your gifts! Our spacious kitchens ensure that everyone will get a slice of birthday cake (funfetti of course) and there will be plenty of room for snacks and drinks.


If the weather is nice, take advantage of your outdoor spaces by creating a cohesive indoor/outdoor party area. Grill up a tasty dinner menu on the patio, host a water balloon toss in the yard, or blow out the candles while watching the sunset on the deck!


For the Kids

If you are throwing a strictly kid-friendly party, have no fear! We know that the terrible twos can be intimidating, but even they won’t be able to resist the charms of your home, like a kids rec room or loft area. Prepare by designating certain spaces for different games and activities, and already have plastic tablecloths set up at the tables. Our floorplans offer a wide variety of design options, so if a little one becomes a party pooper and needs a nap, there will be plenty of space in an additional bedroom or guest room.


For the Adults

On the other hand, if this is the type of birthday party involving champagne and canapés, we’re in! With tons of counter space in the kitchen, you’ll be able to set up a DIY bar for people to help themselves to their own beverages. Make a birthday playlist and hear it throughout the open spaces of your home; it might even inspire a dance party!


Whichever direction you take, be sure to prepare a tour for your guests who haven’t yet seen your new home, and share your party photos with us on Facebook!

The Top Deciding Factor When Purchasing a Home

The experts at Trulia recently conducted a study with Harris Interactive to reveal the factors that homebuyers have at the top of their list when looking to buy. The study showed that the majority of Americans surveyed (84%) identified the neighborhood as equally important, or more important, than the house itself. Although this may come as a surprise for some, Miller & Smith also knows how important the location of a home is.


We know the neighborhood you are going to live in carries so much weight in the decision of purchasing a home, which is why we are always looking to build our new homes in the perfect place! The bottom line is, no matter how gorgeous or perfect your home is, your surroundings also have to be a great fit for your family and your lifestyle. Most homebuyers recognize this, and are even willing to give up certain home features in order to find the perfect location, like a pool or a finished basement, according to Trulia.


So, let’s talk about what homebuyers want most in a neighborhood. Trulia’s study found that there was no debate between homebuyers about how safe a neighborhood is, as 80% said that safety was the most important aspect of a neighborhood. Not a surprise to homebuyers with children, the second most sought after aspect in a neighborhood is the schools.


In Trulia’s “The House is Only Half of It” hilarious commercial spots, you really get a sense of how important a neighborhood is, and it helps put everything into perspective. Everyone has different lifestyles and if you are on the fence about a neighborhood you are considering, while we have already covered safety and schools, take a look at some of the reasons that others love their neighborhoods below!


Walkability – Is it important that you and your family can walk to something nearby, such as a restaurant or store? Or are you okay with driving a few minutes down the road in exchange for other aspects of a community?


Open Space – If you don’t mind driving to the store and all you need is open space with a park or two, any Miller & Smith neighborhood will suit you. We know that no matter conveniently located you want to be to your favorite boutique, it’s important to get fresh air and sunshine!


Similar families – If you have kids, it might be important for you to move into a neighborhood with other families who have children so it’s easy to set up play dates, or send the kids off to the park together. If you’re looking for a quieter neighborhood, make sure it’s one where you still get a friendly vibe from neighbors.


Scenery – We aren’t just talking about sweeping valley views; we mean anything you see when you walk out of your home. Do you mind looking at a parking lot next door, or do you want other pristine new homes surrounding yours? While the answer might seem obvious, everyone’s priorities are different and it may not be a deal breaker for certain people.


These are not the only factors you should consider when purchasing a new home, but they are something to think about for you and your family! For more information about new Miller & Smith neighborhoods now open, be sure to check out our our community pages. If you’re planning a visit to any of our communities, you’ll soon realize that one visit changes everything!


Kitchens for Today’s Modern Home Lifestyle

During our 53 years in business, Miller & Smith has recognized that for many homebuyers, the kitchen is one of, if not the most important part of a home. We design this space in each of our homes to accommodate to the way people live today. As the hub of your everyday happenings, our kitchen designs are effortless, deliberate, welcoming, and personalized. If is sounds like your cup of tea (or coffee), read on to discover the modern kitchen designs in each Miller & Smith home!

Cavalier Townhome at Embrey Mill



We know that when you buy a new home, you expect it to offer conveniences that you won’t find elsewhere. In each of our kitchens, ample cabinet space allows you to store endless amounts of cooking gadgets, while a large amount of counter space provides plenty of space to work and move around.


Criswood Model Home at Courthouse Manor



If you feel like the kitchen is for more than just cooking, you are surely not alone! Our kitchen designs recognize that all families live differently, and that is why we ensure that the kitchen can serve as a multipurpose space. Equipped for cooking, eating, gaming, working, or simply gathering to socialize, we create a space for you to make your own.


Windchase Model Home at Cayden Ridge



What is a modern kitchen without top of the line features? To get the most out of a brand new home, we design our kitchens with features that will last and make you want to spend time in the space. Our kitchens feature gorgeous countertops, often granite, large kitchen cabinets, and hardwood flooring. Additionally, we work with you in our design studios to help you pick the details that meet your personal aesthetic.

Merrimac Model Home at Cayden Ridge



Just because you are cooking in the kitchen, doesn’t mean you can’t also watch TV, or chat about your day with the kids while they play. We design our homes to make with the kitchen connected to other main rooms of the home, like the dining room or great room. Our infamous kitchen islands are also large enough to seat an audience when you are whipping up a masterpiece!

The Hedgebrook Model Home at Cayden Ridge

When you’re ready to discover the perfect kitchen for your family, our model homes will be waiting for your visit! Visit our website or contact our sales managers today to learn more about other features of brand new Miller & Smith homes!