Financial Topics

Luxury Real Estate- What’s Important in Purchasing?

Robin Kencel|September 11, 2018

In 2014, a list of nine elements that make up the “perfect” house became the talk of the town. Originally formulated for a Houselogic feature by builder John Riha, the nine features that comprise an “ideal” house make a more meaningful list than most similar compilations. It can serve as a  thought-provoking checklist for buyers —particularly in luxury markets— if for no other reason than helping to determine  personal priorities. The nine (with a few of my parenthetical asides):

  1.  One story ( our team is seeing this priority primarily in empty nesters)
  2. Nine-Foot Ceilings (and higher, if possible)
  3. Southern Exposure (natural light overall is a key element)
  4. Outdoor Living Spaces (with fun features like a fire pit and lounge area with outdoor t.v.)
  5. Maximized Insulation (Read: Spray foam)
  6. Separate Master Bedroom (understood to mean“suite”)
  7. Low-Maintenance Exterior (Im not sure this fits in New England where white clapboard is a classic along with brick and stone)
  8. Great Storage (a must!)
  9. Ergonomic Touches

Author Riha added an unnumbered 10th feature which is always first on my list. It’s one that the jury (which I am part of) for the Landmark Recognition Program at the Greenwich Historical Society includes in vetting homes being considered for recognition each year. We call it “that little bit of magic.”  It’s the intangible feeling that results from good —or should I say great— architectural design. As the jury says, “you know it when you see it,” and it includes elements such as how the house is situated and relates to the land, proportion, scale, deal and quality of materials and workmanship.


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