Wealthy buyers are in a league of their own. When shopping for new homes, their lists of must-haves tend to be different from the average buyer.
These people demand the best, and they aren’t willing to settle for anything less. Here’s a look at 15 luxury home features coveted by high-end buyers.
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Functional Floor Plans
It’s not the most glamorous feature, but Luke Andrews, a luxury real estate advisor, said the functionality of the floor plan is critical.
“Buyers are increasingly seeking homes that cater to multi-generational living arrangements,” said Andrews, who works with Spears Group at Compass, based in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida. “A well-designed layout that accommodates the needs of extended families is highly desirable in the luxury market.”
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Quality Construction and Detailing
All homes are not created equal — but high-end clients demand the best.
“In an environment where property inventory is increasing, well-built and meticulously detailed homes are paramount,” Andrews said. “Buyers and renters are looking for craftsmanship and materials that ensure lasting value and aesthetics.”
If you think elevators are exclusive to multi-family developments, think again.
“With many high-end properties spanning multiple stories to capitalize on scenic views, elevators have become a necessity,” Andrews said. “They offer convenience and accessibility for residents and guests, ensuring that every level of the home is easily reachable.”
Prime Location and Views
Proximity is always a top priority for luxury buyers, Andrews said.
“For our market, being at the beach is all about the experience — and having a property with breathtaking views enhances that experience significantly,” he said. “Location and views are often the primary factors driving purchasing decisions.”
Candice Milano, a real estate broker with the Milano-Rambarran Team at Brown Harris Stevens, based in New York City, said exceptional views of the city skyline are also coveted in her local market.
“They not only provide a sense of prestige but also offer a daily dose of awe-inspiring beauty,” she said. “These views create a connection to the city and elevate the overall living experience.”
Private Indoor Pools
Since they provide a year-round oasis for relaxation and exercise, Milano said private indoor pools — especially saltwater pools — are highly sought with luxury buyers.
“Saltwater pools are favored for their gentle feel and lower maintenance,” she said. “In a city with unpredictable weather, having a private pool ensures convenience and privacy, without the need for public facilities.”
If a high-end buyer is a wine connoisseur or collector, Milano said a wine cellar is essential.
“They provide a controlled environment to store and display valuable wine collections,” she said. “The presence of a well-designed wine cellar adds sophistication and a touch of opulence to the home.”
Open Kitchens With Ultra-Lux Appliances
A symbol of functionality and style, Milano said, open kitchens with high-end appliances are in demand by wealthy clients.
“Buyers appreciate spacious, well-equipped kitchens for entertaining and cooking,” she said. “The luxury appliances not only enhance functionality, but also elevate the culinary experience.”
Space for Expensive Artwork
Many high-end clients want to deck their walls with seriously expensive art.
“Art collectors require ample wall space and appropriate lighting to display their prized pieces,” Milano said. “Homes with dedicated gallery areas or well-lit spaces cater to these needs, allowing art enthusiasts to showcase their valuable collections.”
Some people go to the spa, but high-end buyers want the spa experience at home.
“A dedicated spa room with an infrared sauna, steam room and cold plunge pool offers a luxurious escape within the home,” Milano said. “It allows buyers to enjoy therapeutic massages and rejuvenation, without leaving their property, fulfilling a buyer’s desire for wellness and self-care.”
As noted above, some luxury clients seek dedicated spa rooms, but others prefer this to be their bathroom.
“Spa-like bathrooms are the definition of luxury. Heated floors, deep soaking tubs and showers with multiple heads are extremely popular in high-end homes,” said Scott Bergmann, a Realtor at Realty ONE Group, based in Omaha, Nebraska.
Smart Home Integration
“Desirable high-end features are moving away from more traditional pieces like lavish furniture and more toward smart home integration,” Bergmann said.
He said this often includes features such as automated lighting, climate control and security systems.
Outdoor Living Spaces
The rich aren’t just concerned with the inside of their homes — they also want elaborate outdoor areas.
“Beautiful outdoor spaces with manicured landscapes, kitchens, fireplaces, inviting pool areas and even projector systems are all the rage in the luxury property right now,” Bergmann said.
Wealthy buyers don’t get gym memberships; they bring the gyms home. Bergmann said this often involves features such as a dedicated gym space with top-notch equipment and a sauna.
“In my experience, I’ve even seen basketball courts being installed,” he said.
When the ultra-wealthy entertain, many hire help to ensure they can enjoy the evening, while providing their guests with a first-rate experience.
“Affluent buyers are falling in love with private sculleries, allowing for private chefs or catering services to have a place to work while the entertainment space still presents as clean and spacious,” said Abigail Davis, a luxury real estate agent and broker associate at Corcoran Reverie, based in Panama City Beach, Florida.
Essentially bringing a restaurant experience home, this setup is luxury at its finest.
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