Market for High-End Home Furnishings Benefits from Housing Market Recovery
Home Furnishings Marketers: Prepare to Get Comforable
The market for luxury home furnishings gets a bounce as the high-end housing market recovers with customers looking for calm after the recession's storm.
August 2012 Stevens, PA -- Finally, the nation's housing market is showing signs of recovery which will bring new opportunities for marketers that sell furniture, home furnishings, appliances, remodeling products and other home-related goods. The National Association of Realtors just released news that existing-home sales rose 10.4 percent in July from last year, while the price of an average home was up 9.4 percent. If current trends continue, that will make 2012 the first year since 2005 in which the number of homes sold and the price they typically sell for rose.
For marketers targeting homeowners at the higher-end of the housing market, there is even more good news in the NAR report. The share of existing-home buyers that are trading up is higher in 2012, as first-time, entry-level home buyers accounted for only about one-third of recent purchasers this year. Historically, first-time buyers make up some 40 percent of home purchasers.
Is your company positioned to get your share of this prosperous and growing market?
"Finally, the housing market is showing signs of recovery as affluent consumers are trading up and investing in new homes. That means opportunity for marketers selling things for the homes people are buying," says Pam Danziger, president of Unity Marketing and author of a new trend report on the home furnishings market entitled Home Is Where the Luxury Is. "What's needed now is for marketers to understand the affluent customer ready to invest in improving their homes and make sure their marketing messages match the consumers' own desires."
In another sign of luxury housing's recovery, Toll Brothers, the Horsham, PA-based company that is the only national builder focused on the luxury housing market, just announced home sales (average price $576,000) in the past quarter were up 41 percent from last year. Toll Brothers CEO Douglas Yearley attributes the company's growth and bullish outlook on low-interest rates, good pricing for their luxury-enhanced properties, and that affluent consumers who postponed moving during the recession were finally thinking about buying a house again. With even more signed contracts and non-binding reservations in the bag, Yearley is justified in his statement, "We are enjoying the most sustained demand we've experienced in over five years."
With affluent consumers buying new homes and moving up, the demand for home furnishings is also on the rise, which is giving a boost to home furnishings and furniture retailers' profits. The U.S. Census department's Advanced Monthly Retail Sales just reported that in the first seven months of 2012, home furnishings and furniture store sales grew 9.3 percent from 2011 totals. This makes furniture and home furnishings stores the second fastest growing retail sector after non-store retailers.
It's news like this that should get home furnishings marketers and retailers inspired to make sure they understand the new post-recession home customers in order to get their share of this rapidly growing market. That is where Unity Marketing's new trend report comes in. It is entitled Home is Where the Luxury Is: A Study of Luxury Consumers and Their Furnishings, Redecorating and Remodeling Purchases. This report will give valuable research-based insights and marketing strategies to help marketers assess their opportunities and grow their busineses. This new study of high-end home furnishings customers gives market-based facts and figures that will inspire marketers to develop new strategies for their brands and their businesses.
Survey finds comfort beats function in home furnishings
"For example, the research shows that some 60 percent of high-end home furnishings customers look for items that make them feel calm and comfortable," says Danziger. "This ranks way ahead of home furnishings that are primarily functional (39 percent) or a well-known brand (38 percent). This suggests new directions for home furnishings marketers in product design and advertising to present their brand in line with customers' underlying psychology. Further it directs retailers to create a calm and comfortable environment in their stores."
The data and analysis home furnishings marketers need to effectively reach their most valuable consumer is contained in Home is Where the Luxury Is 2012, a comprehensive report that shows who is buying home furnishings, where they shop, how much they spend, and what marketing messages resonate with them.
More About the Research
This new trend report, Home Is Where the Luxury Is, will be a powerful tool to help you benefit from a vital and growing luxury home market. It covers two surveys among luxury consumers giving different perspectives on their luxury homes.
Home Furnishings Purchases:
The latest, conducted in April 2012, covers luxury consumers who purchased of home furnishings items, including decorative items as well as furniture, bedding, art and others (excluding home electronics and major home appliances). The survey same was 1,271 affluent (top 20 percent income) luxury consumers. Average income $274.8k; 44.8 years; 45 percent male and 55 percent female.
Major Home Projects:
Affluent luxury consumers involved in major home remodeling and redecorating projects in 2010. This survey was conducted among 1,349 affluent luxury consumers (Average income $306.7k; 44.8 years; 45 percent male and 55 percent female). Results were compared with similar study conduct in 2008 among 1,024 affluent luxury consumers (Average income $204,800; age 45 years; and men 36 percent/women 64 percent 2008 income weighted to 2010 income sample).
The Research Objectives
To understand the market for luxury home goods and services, specifically:
- Profile the luxury home furnishings consumers, what they buy, where they shop, how much they spend and most importantly, why they buy
- Market size and growth of the luxury home furnishings market
- Attitudes and motivations in home furnishings purchases
- Factors that influenced home purchases
- Places where luxury consumers shop for their home
- Use of a decorator or designer and why they use a decorator
- Favorite styles of home decorating
- Trends in major home projects, 2008 to 2010
- Trends in amount spent on major home projects
- Personalities of luxury home consumers and how to sell to them
>> Our goal is to help you put consumer insights and understanding to work to grow your business.