Coldwell Banker(R) Luxury Index Provides Insight Into America's Affluent Interest Rate Hikes Have Little Impact on Luxury Purchases



Coldwell Banker Reports Strong Luxury Home Sales in 2004



    PARSIPPANY, N.J., Nov. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- The inaugural Coldwell Banker(R)
 Luxury Index has found that luxury spending is resistant to interest rate
 hikes.  Sixty-one percent of U.S. luxury homeowners surveyed stated recent
 increases in interest rates would have no impact on their luxury item
 purchases.  In fact, more than one third said that they are buying more luxury
 goods and services than ever before, with many of these purchases going toward
 making their homes more luxurious and valuable.
     This is a major finding of the Coldwell Banker Luxury Index, a study
 conducted in August 2004 of U.S. luxury homeowners -- those owning homes
 valued at $1 million or more -- concerning their attitudes, preferences and
 purchasing behavior related to luxury goods and services.  The national survey
 of 300 respondents was conducted by telephone by International Communications
 Research (ICR) of Philadelphia and commissioned by Coldwell Banker Real Estate
 Corporation, a leader in luxury real estate sales.
     "The luxury market is booming," said Jim Gillespie, president and chief
 executive officer of Coldwell Banker Real Estate Corporation. "Sales this year
 through our luxury marketing program, Coldwell Banker Previews
 International(R), are up 52 percent year-to-date. This is particularly
 significant considering that in 2003 certified Coldwell Banker Previews
 International sales associates were involved in more luxury homes sales than
 during any other year in company history.  The index also indicates that
 luxury homeowners are investing in their homes by remodeling and adding
 fantastic amenities."
 
     Most Popular Amenities for the Home
     Million dollar homeowners are spending to improve their homes.  While 85
 percent already have security systems in their homes and 77 percent have
 gourmet/designer kitchens, home theaters will soon become even more prevalent
 in luxury homes.  When asked what luxury amenities they plan to buy, the top
 responses were home theaters (39 percent), boat docks (15 percent) and
 topiary/landscaping (13 percent).
 
                                              Already Have      Plan to Buy
     Security System                               85%             4%
     Gourmet/Designer Kitchen                      77%            10%
     Topiary/landscaping                           64%            13%
     Home Theater                                  46%            39%
     Hot Tub                                       41%            10%
     In-ground Pool                                31%            11%
     Wine Cellar                                   26%            10%
     Heated Floors                                 17%             2%
     Boat Dock                                     13%            15%
     Resistance Pool                                5%             2%
     Pizza Oven                                     6%             1%
     Tennis Court                                   4%             2%
 
     "Luxury homeowners are enjoying a lifestyle of leisure.  The high-end
 features that are being added are some of the reasons we are seeing increased
 property values in certain high-end markets," said Gillespie.
 
     Luxury Homes:  Add on or Move?
     Luxury homeowners are investing in more than just amenities.  Over the
 next two to three years, more than one-third (35 percent) of luxury homeowners
 plan on adding on to or remodeling their property.  Eight percent are planning
 to move to another luxury home, citing several reasons:  relocating to another
 city (21 percent), upwardly mobile/enjoying greater success (21 percent),
 desire for a bigger home (17 percent) or retiring (13 percent).
     Second home and vacation home purchases are also high on the luxury
 homeowner's priority list.  While 31 percent indicated that they already own a
 second property, an additional 15 percent plan to buy a second home in the
 next year or so.
 
     Top Luxury Purchases
     Luxury homeowners already own many lavish items, with luxury home
 decorations (76 percent) and luxury cars (72 percent) topping the list.  Other
 popular possessions among luxury homeowners include: expensive jewelry (65
 percent), high-end fragrances (43 percent), exclusive country club memberships
 (31 percent), boats (18 percent) and thoroughbred horses (five percent).
 
     Shopping for the Luxury Homeowner that has Everything
     When asked which luxury item was the most fun to shop for, the top three
 responses were a house (17 percent), a car (15 percent) and jewelry (11
 percent).  Respondents also said that they were "most satisfied" with their
 purchases of houses (26 percent), cars (26 percent) and furniture (7 percent).
     Regarding technology purchases, digital cameras were the most frequently
 purchased (72 percent), followed by plasma TV screens (46 percent), MP3
 players (39 percent), WiFi laptops (37 percent), camera cell phones (34
 percent) and Blackberry devices (33 percent).
     The survey also included the types of private clubs luxury homeowners
 belong to.  Country clubs were the most popular (31 percent), followed by golf
 clubs (21 percent), tennis clubs (19 percent) and wine clubs (11 percent).
 
     Interest Rate Resistant
     America's luxury homeowners reported overwhelmingly (61 percent) that
 recent federal interest rate hikes have little affect on their luxury
 spending, while 35 percent indicated that rising rates would cause a "scale
 back" of luxury purchases.  Only four percent of luxury homeowners said that
 they "will put all luxury purchases on hold" because of increasing rates.
 
     Luxury Homeowners: Creatures of Comfort
     Personal attention and recreation seem to be priorities with luxury
 homeowners.  The Coldwell Banker(R) Luxury Index revealed that 64 percent of
 the million dollar homeowners who were surveyed have traveled to an
 international destination for pleasure over the last two years.  How they
 travel is also noteworthy: Sixty-five percent have flown first class over that
 time period, while 30 percent have taken a cruise and another 18 percent have
 flown on a private jet.
     To take care of themselves, 76 percent of million dollar homeowners have
 visited a spa over the past couple of years, while nine percent have had
 elective cosmetic surgery.
     Are these million dollar homeowners living the good life?  Yes.  Only 11
 percent of luxury homeowners defined their lifestyle as "modest and thrifty."
 
     Demographics of Study Respondents
     The majority (85 percent) of the Coldwell Banker(R) Luxury Index
 respondents reported an annual household income of $150,000 or more, and 50
 percent of these respondents said their annual household income was $300,000
 or more. The average size of households was four, and several age groups were
 represented: under 35 (13 percent), 35 to 44 (43 percent), 45 to 54 (26
 percent), and 55 and over (18 percent).
 
     About Coldwell Banker(R)
     Since 1906, the Coldwell Banker(R) organization has been a premier
 provider of full-service real estate. In 2005, Franchise Times magazine's
 prestigious Top 200 issue ranked Coldwell Banker number one in real estate and
 number eight among all franchisors. Additionally, the Coldwell Banker
 organization received the "Highest Overall Satisfaction For First Time Home
 Buyers and Sellers Among National Full Service Real Estate Firms" from the
 J.D. Power and Associates 2003 Home Buyer/Seller Satisfaction Study(SM). The
 study was based on responses from 2,924 home buyers and sellers. The study was
 conducted for Cendant Corporation by J.D. Power and Associates. The Coldwell
 Banker system has more than 3,600 residential and commercial real estate
 offices and 117,000 Sales Associates in 28 countries and territories. Each
 office is independently owned and operated except for offices owned and
 operated by NRT Incorporated. The Coldwell Banker system is a leader in the
 industry in residential real estate, and in niche markets such as resort, new
 homes and luxury properties through its Coldwell Banker Previews
 International(R) division. It is a pioneer in consumer services with its
 Coldwell Banker Concierge(R) program and award-winning Web site,
 http://www.coldwellbanker.com. Coldwell Banker Mortgage is one of the largest
 telephone/web based lenders in the country and the Coldwell Banker
 Commercial(R) system is one of the largest commercial franchise operations
 with over 400 affiliates offering clients comprehensive buying, selling,
 leasing, acquisition, disposition and management services. Coldwell Banker
 Real Estate Corporation is a subsidiary of Cendant Corporation (NYSE:   CD).
 
 

SOURCE Coldwell Banker

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