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Millennial Home Decor

What Millennials’ Home Decorating Means to You

Walk into the apartment of a young adult, and you may find a cozy space with trendy and unique decor.

Makeshift furniture and ratty hand-me-downs are mostly gone from young adults’ home decorating. Millennials prioritize achieving stylish homes at affordable prices.

“This is a generation with a well-developed sense of taste, that follows fashion and style, but also wants good looks at good prices,” Ann Fishman of Generational Targeted Marketing says in a recent Chicago Tribune article.

The article considers the expert opinions of designers, marketing experts and millennials to analyze the age group’s values and behaviors when it comes to home decorating.

As a retailer, you have the potential to play a big role in contributing to millennials’ interior design process. Here are some of the conclusions from the Chicago Tribune, and ways you can apply this knowledge:

Millennials search for inspiration online. It should come as no surprise that they use social media to research design projects and trends. “They’ll research what’s best, and add their own stamp,” Fishman says. Millennials spend time on websites including Pinterest and Houzz and on blogs, looking for information and trends before making purchasing decisions.

You can populate your social accounts to display the housewares products you sell. If your millennial audience is searching for home decor inspiration, social media is a prime way to target them.

Uniqueness trumps brand names. Budget is a concern for this generation. So, instead of investing in brand names, they strive to find unique items that can’t be purchased elsewhere. Millennials are more likely to seek out decorative pieces at garage sales or stores that sell vintage items or make decorations themselves.

Make sure that your staff is familiar with popular DIY projects, such as furniture painting or basic woodworking. If a millennial is working on building a table from reclaimed wood and metal pipes or painting a piece of used furniture, your store can be source of ideas and advice.

Neutral is trending. Gray variations, coolers whites and other soft neutrals, combined with bold splashes of color, are becoming the go-to color trends for millennials. Brightly painted or wallpapered walls are also growing in popularity. “This isn’t a generation that necessarily grew up with wallpaper, so they think it’s new,” designer Alena Capra tells the Chicago Tribune.

When millennials shoppers come into your paint department, keep the color trends in mind, and be prepared to share information on neutral colors. If you don’t sell wallpaper, consider whether or not wall stickers or small wall murals would be a fit for you to sell in your market.

Reclaimed styles on the rise. There are three main design looks that are making a comeback: midcentury, Scandinavian and industrial. This means lots of natural materials, metals, old barn wood and exposed brick are popular in decor for millennial homes and apartments, according to the Chicago Tribune.

You might not sell the wood and metal your customers need to create their modern decor, but you can be a resource to millennials for complementary projects. When it comes time to hang a framed photo on an exposed brick wall or to clean spots off a metal coffee table, you can be their go-to source of advice and speciality products.

About Hilary Welter

As marketing and research coordinator, it’s Hilary’s duty to keep retailers informed about NRHA products and services and to help coordinate industry research projects. Additionally, Hilary is the voice behind NRHA’s and Hardware Retailing’s social media accounts. She appreciates a good book, spicy food, well-made horror films, craft beer and exploring new places near and far.

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