How to sell property to Millennials

Selling to a Millennial Market: Best Advice for Cross Generational Property Deals


If you’re like most sellers in Canberra, you’re probably not a millennial. With the surge of these younger faces on the market, it’s vital that as a seller, you’re prepared to deal with the expectations and property perceptions of a younger generation.

What you need to know about millennials

Everyone seems to be using the term “millennial” quite loosely these days. Most demographers agree that a millennial is someone born between 1981 and 1996, which means in 2019 the oldest millennial would be 38 years old and the youngest 23 years.

Many of the millennials in Canberra are first time buyers who might be relying on a bit of help from mum and dad for the down payment – after saving for a few years. They’re aggressively stepping into the homeowner’s club and like many of us, are chasing the long-held Australian dream of owning your own castle. This is happening as they’re trying to move away from a “renters’ philosophy”.

Understanding the millennial mindset is one way to get these buyers interested in your property.

Busting the myth that millennial’s don’t purchase homes

Many people selling real estate are under the impression that lifestyle (and smashed avocado, as our good friend Bernard Salt once put it) is more important to millennials than purchasing their own home. This stereotype couldn’t be further from the truth. Millennials are still fervently chasing the dream of becoming homeowners and being frugal enough to pursue that dream. They currently make up the largest portion of employed individuals, and if you think about it, most of us have seen an increase in those in their late-20’s to mid-30’s purchasing homes.

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So, what types of property are Canberra’s millennials looking for?

We’ve divided the list of what millennials find particularly appealing into three categories: aesthetics, core features and location. These should give you an idea of what you can do to suit this generation of buyers to get more offers for your property rolling in. After all, 98% of millennials paid at or above asking price for a home according to recent data.


It’s not so much beauty that’s making millennials desire homes, but how these aesthetics make the space more functional.

Things like indoor-outdoor flow made possible by French or sliding doors, flooring that isn’t carpeted and a property that needs less fuss (and money) to maintain. They’re quite an entertaining bunch, looking for larger dining and entertaining spaces as opposed to larger bedrooms.

Core Features

Function is at the forefront of every millennial buyer’s mind, therefore any special features the home has to offer will likely outshine the aesthetics.

Most millennials are looking to purchase homes over units, as they find it far more likely to reap a return when they decide to sell. Core features the millennial crowd is looking for are:

  • A reasonable number of bedrooms
  • Large kitchens and;
  • Space to expand

Plot size matters – as it gives them the best option should they wish to modernize a home and extend if possible. In addition, they’re willing to build improvements over time to bring the home up to their desired standard. Saying this, even though millennial buyers are willing to renovate and improve, most want a home they’re able to move into soon.


Price and property size will play a role in where the property should be located. Of course, millennials understand that location plays a major role in pricing.

Those that prefer the convenience of city living and who aren’t willing to compromise on their lifestyle will likely go smaller (in property size) to live closer to areas such as the City, Barton, Lyneham and Dickson. Millennials who are far more interested in size and features don’t mind making a commute to work from more suburban areas such as Lanyon, Tuggeranong, Belconnen, Gungahlin and newer parts of Weston Creek.

The latter are usually young couples looking to expand their family, the former – singletons and professionals looking for a stable residence in the area they already call home.

How are Millennials purchasing property?

Millennials are much less likely to participate in auctions, especially if they’re thinking of turning the house or unit into an investment property. Those considering building on a plot of land will need to avoid auctions altogether. Most favour private treaty simply because they’re able to negotiate and get input from their parents who might be signing on as guarantors or coughing up a significant portion of the initial deposit. The fact that they’re not forced to decide on the spot – giving them the ability to mull over their decision and seek parental input – before making an offer is another reason millennial’s have taken to the private treaty method of selling property.

One third of millennials consider themselves planners, so making an offer on a home will be methodical. Planners tend to make decisions centered around whether they feel the property meets their specific requirements. Often, they’ve written out a list of specific features they desire in any house or unit they purchase. Whilst older generations have waited until marriage or settling into a stable long-term relationship, even millennial singletons are going into homeownership simply because of the stability it offers.


Targeting millennials specifically may not always be an ideal strategy when selling a home in Canberra, but you can still make your home more appealing to this age group. If doing this in a strategic way, you’ll still be leaving enough room for Gen X and the Baby Boomers to find it appealing as well.

If you’re considering selling your property, why not speak to one of our senior agents? Our agency principal, Peter Tolhurst, has over 25 years experience and would be happy to perform a free, no obligation market appraisal at a time that suits you.

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