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In a Barbie world: 78% of UK homeowners report that they do not live in their ‘dreamhouse’

New research by Ready Steady Store reports the impact of the Barbie Dreamhouse and the influence it has on UK Homeowners dream

There is no doubt that the iconic doll, Barbie has returned to the forefront of most minds in 2023. Following an impressive marketing campaign and press tour, the new Barbie movie has ignited a pink revolution. However, this ignition for love of all things ‘Barbie world’, has also bought into question our perceptions of our ideal dreamhouse.

First launched in 1959, Barbie and the ‘Barbie lifestyle’ has been described as the epitome of a lavish lifestyle. Her fashion prowess, dreamy cars, and most notably, the iconic Barbie Dreamhouse, have become synonymous with opulence and aspiration. As Barbie’s influence continues to grow, it becomes increasingly apparent that its impact on society reaches far beyond the confines of playrooms.

But what impact has this doll and her lifestyle had on UK homeowners?

A new study conducted by self storage provider, Ready Steady Store, surveyed over 500 UK homeowners, exploring what homeowners feel a real dreamhouse should contain. The survey found that 78% of homeowners admitted that they do not live in their dreamhouse, of those, 26% reported that their home is not close to being their dreamhouse, 13% reported that it had potential, and 38% adding it is not their dreamhouse – but it’s home.

Interestingly throughout the research, the overwhelming response was one of needing larger or more space. When participants were asked what they needed to add to their home or next home, to consider it their dreamhouse, larger living space was top of the list with 48%, followed by more bedrooms and bathrooms [44%] and a fitted kitchen with new amenities [39%]. More space was also further identified, with [30%] needing more garden and outside space and [27%] reporting a need for extra space for storage.

This research comes at a pivotal time following the popularity of the Barbie lifestyle, matched with the cost-of-living crisis, rising BoE rates and the property market facing crisis. Homeowners find themselves yearning for grandeur and spaciousness, mirroring Barbie’s larger-than-life lifestyle. However, increasing numbers of homeowners are unlikely to be able to upscale their properties in the current market.

Other key findings from the research include:

  • The most important factors when choosing a dreamhouse are location and neighbourhood [40%] and size and layout [30%].
  • An energy-efficient home [50%], a modern open plan airy space [47%] and a bigger garden or outdoor space [44%] are the leading drivers for homeowners’.
  • 66% of homeowners stated they needed 4 or more bedrooms in their home to consider their dreamhouse.
  • 39% of respondents would prioritise more closet/wardrobe space and [26%] favoured a garden shed or garage as a necessity for storage.


Discussing the research, Mehran Charania, Director of Ready Steady Store, said:

“As the newfound love of all things Barbie continues to captivate the world, we have noticed a significant impact on homeowners who are now reflecting on their own living situations.

The allure of a Barbie Dreamhouse has sparked a desire for larger living spaces, extra storage, and more rooms among homeowners. Our research has unveiled a resounding response from homeowners, expressing a need for expanded living areas and additional storage solutions.

Unfortunately, in today’s market, many UK homeowners face financial limitations due to the cost of living and the Bank of England’s rate increases, making affordability for larger spaces and extra rooms a challenge. However, in times like these, we believe it is crucial to explore alternative options such as self storage facilities.

At Ready Steady Store, we understand the value of finding versatile storage solutions that can cater to individual needs. Embracing alternative storage solutions can be the first step for homeowners in their journey towards a more spacious and organised home, enabling them to transform their living areas into their own version of a dreamhouse.”

Established in 2005, Ready Steady Store is a fast-growing self-storage provider with cost-effective storage units located in the Midlands, and South, North and East of England. In 2023, Ready Steady Store was awarded the prestigious Feefo Platinum Trusted Service Award for a third consecutive year for its high standard and trusted level of customer service.

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