We play in the world of luxury real estate every day, featuring breathtaking homes in sought-after communities. Over time, the opulence of high ceilings, marble counter tops, and wood floors has become less of a rarity and more of a standard in many areas; and its seems as though the the ubiquity of splendor is redefining the idea of luxury.
Recent eye-opening discussions have introduced me to an entirely new perception of luxury.
Friends born four decades after me have shared their opinions of what it really means to live extravagantly, and the consensus is that past notions of luxury no longer hold true for younger generations.
While elements like cost, brand and rarity were once used to determine luxury status, they are now far less important than another factor: time.
Time is the number one luxury item on the list for my young friends. Their view is that every second counts in today’s fast-paced career-driven society, so sharing wonderful experiences with people they care about is top priority.
Watching a sunset, being moved by a heartfelt song, enjoying a moment of peace and quiet, sipping a tasty cup of tea, losing yourself in a wonderful book, and enjoying a breathtaking photograph in a local gallery are all things on their list of luxury. #YourThoughts ?
Some expensive rarities that come to mind are Pacific Heights homes in San Francisco, Patek Philippe watches, Aston Martin cars, and Christian Louboutin heels; but these items are taking a back seat to the Nest, comfy sleeping pods, and state-of-the-art shower heads, which all promote convenience and comfort rather than flashiness and style.
Still, time is most important.
My young friends define luxury as any beauty or wonder that reminds them to love life and experience without simply going through the motions. These people are cut from a different cloth.
For them, plans of travel and adventure are always worth the time off work, and their recognition of the value of craftsmanship, quality and culture is never lacking.
They view technology as tool that facilitates their pursuit of luxury and encourages appreciation for innovation. They choose passion over income, and they strive for luxuries like time, art, and knowledge; flashy cars and huge homes aren’t even on their radar. According to them, “It must be worth it.”
As real estate professionals, we must ask ourselves what we can do to best satisfy this need for time. Since time is the top priority for people, we should be focused on providing a quick, efficient home buying/selling experience. If, to our clients, luxury means enjoying that freshly ground cup of coffee on the porch, we must do what we can to make sure they get to experience that.
I am all in. How about you?
Jim Walberg is a real estate agent with Pacific Union International.