Those counting on millennial buyers to rescue the housing market should be aware of the nascent normcore trend among that generation. The word normcore may sound fake, but a quick Internet search will show you that normcore is for real. The search results will likely inspire both laughter and tears, but ultimately this what-will-they-think-of-next trend reflects some core values of the generation that represents the housing market’s best hope for the next crop of first-time homebuyers.
Here’s a quick sampling: Normcore in fashion is defined by Wikipedia as being “characterized by unpretentious, average-looking clothing.” The word can also refer to an attitude of “finding liberation in being nothing special” and again when applied to fashion “dressing neutrally to avoid standing out.”
RealtyTrac applied the concept of normcore to real estate by identifying the zip codes that are the most normal or average when it comes to home values, home size, school quality and year built.
The only above-average characteristic of the top 35 normcore neighborhoods RealtyTrac identified was the percentage of the population that walks or uses public transportation to get to work. A high percentage walking or using public transportation implies core neighborhoods epitomizing the back-to-basics vibe attractive to the younger generation that has embraced the normcore philosophy.
“Like many of our grandparents that came of age in the 1930s amid political uncertainty and a hangover from the overindulgences of the roaring 20s, todays millennials were reared in a similar historic economic cycle and are too now characterized by a search for balance and normalcy,” says Mark Hughes, Chief Operating Officer at a real estate company covering the Southern California market. “Today’s young homebuyers are much less interested in sticking out and more interested blending in. They trend towards a conservative neutral lifestyle. We have gone from low down payments on McMansions to responsible larger down payments on mid-century tract homes as the new smart cool move.”
For more information, and to view the top normcore neighborhoods, click here.