New Housing Report by The Demand Institute Reinforces the Importance of Location


Three of every four movers report a location-related reason for moving; more than 80 percent cite safe neighborhoods as the top location consideration.
While nearly half of all American households plan to move in the future, they won’t go far; the proportion of out-of-state movers is down 30 percent since 2000.
Some city centers have thrived in recent years, but suburbs are still most desirable.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – February 2, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — In real estate, location still matters – a lot. In fact, for the majority of Americans, the right neighborhood trumps the right house, according to a new report by The Demand Institute. But perhaps more surprising is that most people (59%) who move won’t go far, staying within 30 miles of their current home.

In the report released today, The Demand Institute, a non-advocacy, non-profit think tank jointly operated by The Conference Board and Nielsen, examines where and why Americans are moving. While some urban markets have boomed in recent years, more movers are pulling away from dense city centers rather than moving closer. The research, which surveyed more than 10,000 households, shows that the suburbs – home to bigger, more affordable houses and safer neighborhoods – will attract the most movers.

“Strong suburban demand is directly tied to the perception of what constitutes a safe neighborhood,” explained Louise Keely, president of The Demand Institute and senior vice president at Nielsen. “Most of us want to live where we feel safe, and that is quiet and well maintained. Unfortunately, we also know ‘safe neighborhoods’ is a top unmet housing need for many Americans – and one in five report that their neighborhoods are becoming less safe despite continued declines in crime nationally.”

According to the report, “Location Matters: Where America is Moving,” other location-related priorities vary widely and can be polarizing. Those with school-age children care about good schools (30%); others want to be close to their workplace (32%). Some want walkable neighborhoods (39%) near entertainment, services and public transit, yet most are fine with being a short drive from grocery stores, restaurants, parks and other amenities.

“Location and everything that comes with it has very important implications for community leaders and policy makers,” said Jeremy Burbank, vice president at The Demand Institute and Nielsen. “This is especially true as they continue to position their communities for growth and also improve the quality of life. Issues such as safety and crime, advances in transportation, and diversity in population and location needs, will continue to impact and inform Americans’ living and housing choices.”

Location Matters: Where America is Moving is part of a broader initiative led by The Demand Institute to understand where future home and community demand is headed. It is one product of an 18-month research program that included in-depth interviews with 10,000 U.S. consumers, analysis of 2,200 cities and towns in America and projections of the national and regional U.S. housing markets.

Download the full report from The Demand Institute’s website:

About The Demand Institute
The Demand Institute illuminates how consumer demand is evolving around the world. We help government and business leaders align investments to where consumer demand is headed across industries, countries and markets. A non-advocacy, non-profit organization and a division of The Conference Board, The Demand Institute holds 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status in the United States and is jointly operated by The Conference Board and Nielsen. For more information, please visit

About The Conference Board
The Conference Board is a global, independent business membership and research association working in the public interest. Our mission is unique: To provide the world’s leading organizations with the practical knowledge they need to improve their performance and better serve society. The Conference Board is a non-advocacy, not-for-profit entity holding 501 (c)(3) tax-exempt status in the United States. For more information, visit

About Nielsen
Nielsen Holdings N.V. (NYSE: NLSN) is a global information and measurement company with leading market positions in marketing and consumer information, television and other media measurement, online intelligence, mobile measurement, trade shows and related properties. Nielsen has a presence in approximately 100 countries, with headquarters in New York City and Diemen, the Netherlands. For more information, visit

For further information contact:

Ralph Piscitelli
1 212 339 0441

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