Mid-century home buyers - gender of decision maker?

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dilettante
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Mid-century home buyers - gender of decision maker?

Postby dilettante » Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:03 am

Recently I talked with a realtor acquaintance and she mentioned that, in her experience, when heterosexual couples buy a home the woman is the final decider the great majority of the time. I'm willing to accept this as a generality, but wonder if it holds for mid-century modern home purchases. In my case, and in a number of other cases I'm familiar with, the final decision was made by the man.

I figure Lotta Livin' would be the best place to test whether the realtor's premise holds for modernist home purchases. So, who made the final decision to buy the mid-century home you decided on?

• woman
• man
• it was a completely shared decision

Thanks for your responses!

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Izzy
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Postby Izzy » Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:34 am

totally shared decision...

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Postby jakabedy » Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:42 am

I'd say in our case it was the woman -- me. But there are other factors at work. My DH is very easygoing and seldom has strong opinions. I, OTOH, have VERY strong opinions. Our deal is that I pretty much am the decisionmaker day-to-day, and if he has a strong feeling one way or another, it is respected and we go his way.

Also, we weren't looking in particular for an MCM home. We had some complicated geographic/financial requirements on where we could live, and I couldn't find what I was looking for -- another 1920s home like our last three homes. I stumbled across our current MCM home completely by accident. It is a needle in a haystack, an oddball in a rural setting comprised mainly of ersatz McPlantations and farmless "farmhouses." It fit our requirements and I decided to pull the trigger.

I think if the desire from the get-go is to go MCM, then the man may indeed be the bigger booster of the idea. I find that if a hetero man is interested in design, he is typically VERY interested in design, and MCM is hot right now in design circles.

I see a parallel with men in music. DH and I play in some community bands and a big band. In one of the community bands, there was a part of a piece where we had to (gasp!) SING. The bulk of the women were looking around at one another, saying that if we could sing, we would have signed up for choir in the seventh grade instead of band. In other words, we were instrumentalists only, a lot of us really wishing we could get by with croaking along on the tenor part. But when I looked around at the men, I saw that most of them were excellent singers, members of their church choirs or barbershop choruses, etc. I also note more multi-instrumentalists among the men. So, although I am generalizing TERRIBLY, my take on it is that if a hetero man is into something that would be considered an art or "soft" study of some kind, he is serious about it, and will look to excel in it and/or explore the field to its fullest.
1920s Bungalow Gal turned MCM Maven

My Blog: http://magiccitymodern.blogspot.com/

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Gender in Home Purchase

Postby Josquin » Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:08 am

Interesting question. My wife hates to move and she doesn't like to shop for a house. So, I shop for the house within certain base requirements that we both agree on and are within our budget, then when I find something that I like, I present it to her for approval. If by some chance she finds something that she likes, she will present it to me for approval. In our case, the final decision is a compromise; a joint decision. As with any compromise, some really great houses have been considered unacceptable.

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Postby BOXOUTBM » Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:22 am

shared Decision

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Stephen
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Postby Stephen » Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:19 pm

Well, here's my perspective working primarily with first-time homebuyers. In most cases, I find both genders work together on basic specifications but after that most men are happy leaving the final decision to the women. Initially, most people would assume this is the result of male indifference but I've found quite the contrary. Rather, most men, at some point during the purchase process, tell me that their female companion being happy with their digs is mission-critical to relationship success and they are too afraid to speak out on the small stuff because ending up in a place the woman doesn't like would be disastrous.

What's interesting is there are several things that seem to bring men in from the sidelines.

- "Move Up" houses: Men seem much more involved when purchasing the second home versus the first one. Almost always they describe what they want in terms of addressing the shortcomings of the first home.

- MCM houses: I've seen it happen more than once. A heretofore complacent husband will walk into an MCM and proclaim they'd only like to look at houses like that thereafter. This isn't really unexpected when you think about it. Short of medieval castles, MCM homes are probably the most masculine designs; they are physical embodiments of logic and reason.

- Large Land / Big Garage: Guys get excited over owning land.

- Trophy House Syndrome: Women like to make their friends jealous. Men like to be the best. I've seen both genders equally afflicted with THS.
Stephen Meade
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Pacific West Assoc. of Realtors President-Elect
http://www.OCModHomes.com
http://www.CliffMaySocal.com
and
Cliff May Homeowner

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Joe
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Postby Joe » Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:20 pm

compromised :(

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Postby bananabobs » Tue Jun 10, 2008 8:58 pm

"WE'RE going through!" The Commander's voice was like thin ice breaking. He wore his full-dress uniform, with the heavily braided white cap pulled down rakishly over one cold gray eye. "We can't make it, sir. It's spoiling for a hurricane, if you ask me." "I'm not asking you, Lieutenant Berg," said the Commander. "Throw on the power lights! Rev her up to 8500! We're going through!" The pounding of the cylinders increased: ta-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa. The Commander stared at the ice forming on the pilot window. He walked over and twisted a row of complicated dials. "Switch on No. 8 auxiliary!" he shouted. "Switch on No. 8 auxiliary!" repeated Lieutenant Berg. "Full strength in No. 3 turret!" shouted the Commander. "Full strength in No. 3 turret!" The crew, bending to their various tasks in the huge, hurtling eight-engined Navy hydroplane, looked at each other and grinned. "The Old Man'll get us through," they said to one another. "The Old Man ain't afraid of hell!" . . .

"Not so fast! You're driving too fast!" said Mrs. Mitty. "What are you driving so fast for?"

"Hmm?" said Walter Mitty. He looked at his wife, in the seat beside him, with shocked astonishment. She seemed grossly unfamiliar, like a strange woman who had yelled at him in a crowd. "You were up to fifty-five," she said. "You know I don't like to go more than forty. You were up to fifty-five." Walter Mitty drove on toward Waterbury in silence, the roaring of the SN202 through the worst storm in twenty years of Navy flying fading in the remote, intimate airways of his mind. "You're tensed up again," said Mrs. Mitty. "It's one of your days. I wish you'd let Dr. Renshaw look you over."

Walter Mitty stopped the car in front of the building where his wife went to have her hair done. "Remember to get those overshoes while I'm having my hair done," she said. "I don't need overshoes," said Mitty. She put her mirror back into her bag. "We've been all through that," she said, getting out of the car. "You're not a young man any longer." He raced the engine a little. "Why don't you wear your gloves? Have you lost your gloves?" Walter Mitty reached in a pocket and brought out the gloves. He put them on, but after she had turned and gone into the building and he had driven on to a red light, he took them off again.

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Postby Perks » Wed Jun 11, 2008 12:18 pm

Friends will come in and express how much they love our house. My wife will point at me and say "It was all him." :oops:

Our house was of course a shared decision, but we definitely fit Stephen's description: I had to have a modern house.

After looking at half a zillion houses throughout L.A., we decided that MCM wasn't a compromise; we could find a house that met our requirements and was MCM, although it took us quite awhile to do. Like Josquin, I did all the grunt work and showed her only those places that I felt met our needs. Then we discussed them. It worked well that way--I got to have fun digging up cool houses and she avoided the effort of having to look at things that we'd later decide weren't for us.

From there, I brought most of the redesign/renovation ideas to the table, but we discussed and reached a decision together.
Andy Perkins, Broker/Owner

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Postby greenmod » Wed Jun 11, 2008 7:58 pm

As long as it had a garage, my husband would have gone along with anything. It was his only requirement. My list was much longer 8-)

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Postby Jerad » Thu Jun 12, 2008 12:12 pm

I have to say me and Perks are cut from the same chunk of fine Mahogany. Of course being in the Architecture field working predominately in houses I have pretty strong opinions. That being said in the remodel process she had two major inputs. The swimming pool was kept and I will probably be putting a pool in every house we own from now on, and she picked the appliances. Something about lots of stainless steel appliances got her going. So I got my Mid Century Modern house, after living in it a few years she is a full on MCM Diva! Now there's no looking back.

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Postby Izzy » Fri Jun 13, 2008 7:53 am


egads
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Postby egads » Fri Jun 13, 2008 10:05 am

Well, living in a Cliff May is like having both.

When we had to move, it was me who wanted architecture.
My wife just wanted to be closer to work. Her style is way too cluttered for this place. Design is not her thing. But at least I have windows to look out.

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Postby moderns-r-us » Fri Jun 13, 2008 12:31 pm

"Better Living Through Modernism"

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Postby DFWmidmodfan » Fri Jun 13, 2008 5:17 pm

Eric Green's DFW mid-mod site:
www.cosmicool.com

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Postby rockland » Fri Jun 13, 2008 6:16 pm


mr. and mrs. meow
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Postby mr. and mrs. meow » Tue Jun 24, 2008 10:35 pm

shared decision to purchase, but i (mrs.) found the tract and did the research :D
it's good. ...for now.

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Postby deagna » Thu Jun 26, 2008 8:55 am

totally shared decision.

i've found that modern style people gravitate toward each other and are unlikely to love it if their spouse doesn't.

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Postby txmod » Thu Jun 26, 2008 2:21 pm



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