No fewer than a half-dozen major home builders formalized neighborhood, home design and development strategic programs aimed at America's 55+ housing market in the past 24 months.

It's no surprise. This is where the money is, and this is where the volume will be in new home sales in 2017, despite all of the attention given to courting the young adult Millennial buyer. The challenge for neighborhood developers, architects, and builders has been to do it differently. For all the success of the active adult community and business model over the past two decades or more, retirement lifestyle communities then vs. ones designed and programmed for the next wave are getting a major retooling.

Yes, sheer demographics weigh heavily in favor of big, big demand for new lifestyle communities for 55+ers in the next decade, and in these coming weeks, months, and years. There are 75 million Baby Boom generation adults, and they command 70% of the nation's economic wealth and spending. Many of them have the credit, the wherewithal, and, importantly, the drive to become buyers of new homes at this time in their careers, but all of those pluses come with a catch.

This generational cohort, the good news is, doesn't need to be persuaded of the value to them of ownership. They bought homes in their 20s and early 30s, and they raised families in them and built communities around them. They believe in the Dream. They also believe that now, to remain vibrant contributors to society on a number of fronts--as grandparents, as local leaders, as active community members, and as vital, sporting, voraciously curious and thrill-seeking people they've always been--owning new is what they want.

The challenging part is designing a place--a home in a neighborhood--where restless, want-it-all, relatively high-achieving people in their mid-50s and beyond will say, "I love living here because ... "

That's what all of those companies who've initiated strategic focus on 55+ living homes and developments are all trying to do.

This is exactly why we wanted to work with Taylor Morrison on the NEXTadventure program, which will unveil next Tuesday, Jan. 10, at Esplanade at Highland Ranch, in Orlando. Taylor Morrison's strategic signature, "Inspired by You," goes far to telling how this home works, and what it responds to in terms of real home buyers laying out "must-haves," plus what would truly excite them, and make them want to say, "I love living here."

That, after all, is what home builders want and how they know they're in the right business, hearing their customers say they love where they live--in the home and in the community.

The NEXTadventure journey started with a daunting admission on the part of its key stakeholders--Taylor Morrison corporate, the South Florida Region, and the Orlando Division, as well as architects Housing Design Matters, interior design firm Lita Dirks & Co., landscape designers Waldrop Engineering, and a host of innovative manufacturer sponsors and supporters. The admission, last January, was this:

"We have a lot of work to do to understand, to learn how to learn, to listen to, and to be inspired by people who are nearing, or have reached the point in their life where they want a new home that 'puts it all together.' Given the opportunity and in light of the constraints, what's the pathway to learning? And then, how do we put that discovery into action, scale it, and make it work for the business?"

From this admission, we undertook multiple and ongoing forms of research--focus groups, surveys, web polling, social network dialogues, and just-plain-talking to people about this enigma of how to excite them into opting in on what will be the new and most important "entry-level" new home purchase of their lifetimes, their 55+ home.

In one of the research analyses, a Homebuyer Study conducted by The Farnsworth Group, participants revealed specific data on their reasoning behind purchasing a new home. The top three factors that influence the purchase of a new home included area/location (50.2%), price/affordability (37.4%), and the layout of the home (19%).

When building or shopping for a new home, quality of construction (9%), a safer neighborhood (8.4%), better floor plans (8.2%), and architecture/overall design (8.1%) led the way. The top three most important rooms or areas in a home included the kitchen (82.8%), master bedroom (59.2%), and a great room (36%). Technology is also important to buyers in the 55+ age group, rating the preferred technology as wireless security systems (7.1%), lighting that senses and adapts to you (6.3%), and integrated home technology, including “smart" thermostats and lighting controlled by a smart phone (6.2%).

I say "entry-level" because 55+ will be the most diversified--economically, socially, culturally, and in interests, passions, family orientations--ever customer segment for a specific level of homes ever before. Given that the average home stock in the United States now is 39 years, many 55+ adults are looking specifically, and at long last, for new, for their NEXTadventure.

So, we're proud to have been a witness and a partner to an amazing, creative and committed effort across the Taylor Morrison local, regional, and national teams, as well as the energized and inspired work by Deryl Patterson and the Housing Design Matters team, and Lita Dirks and her team, and the folks at Waldrop, who've indeed created indoor-outdoor sanctuary as only they could have done.

We're proud too in our manufacturer partners, and the fact that they stretched their development and delivery process to make their products and materials part of a truly innovative portfolio of structures, systems, and livability features.

And now, it's my pleasure to invite you, any builder who's planning to make it to Orlando next week, to come, discover, interact, challenge, and witness what team NEXTadventure has learned on its way to cracking the 75-billion-dollar question. What do Boomers want in their next new home?

We're having a party, and you're welcome to join us Monday afternoon, Jan. 9, from 4 pm to 7 pm. Here's how you can sign up! We'll get you there and back.