The effects of the Covid-19 pandemic have brought about many unexpected changes on how we live our lives; working from home, social distancing restrictions and wearing a face mask, are all now part of our everyday routine. The changes, especially when working from home, have made many re-assess what they want from their home, what their priorities are and how they use the space.

For those with children, a larger garden may be desired to fit in more play equipment. Those who normally work in an office environment, may be craving a separate home-office to further increase their productivity.  Rooms have been de-cluttered and people have re-evaluated their space and how they use it.

Whatever your reason for moving home, property search criteria’s have changed since significantly as a result of Covid-19 and the effects it has had on our home-life. So what are buyers looking for in a property now? What do they want?  Here we give the top five requirements people are searching for from their next step on the property ladder.

  • The humble garage.

According to Rightmove’s search criteria, ‘garage’ is the number 1 word used on their keyword feature. A garage has great potential for development for many homeowners, if it’s not used to park a car or store an overspill of garden tools from the shed, it can be converted to create an extra room in the home.

The effects of lockdown saw the closure of gyms, so whilst at home, many have wanted somewhere to exercise and transforming a garage into a make-shift gym has proved popular. A garage also has potential to convert into a playroom or secondary living space, especially good for those with children, or to create a new home office.

New research by Deloitte states that over 60% of workers who do not normally work from home, would now like to work more from home and are looking for ways to create a permanent office space within their property.

  • Dive in.

Many gyms and leisure centre doors have remained closed since the pandemic lockdown began, and as a result, those searching for a property with a ‘pool’ is on the up.

Swimming is a popular past time and according to ‘Swim England’ over 10% of the population go swimming twice a month, that’s a staggering 4.7m adults.  Whether it’s an outdoor pool or an indoor pool, what most consider a luxury in their home, many are now clearly on the hunt to make a splash.

  • The green, green grass of home.

Coming in at number 3 is ‘garden’. Not having access to outdoor space during lockdown has now made the search for ‘gardens’ jump from number 3 to number 5 on the Rightmove search criteria chart.  Those who do not live near green spaces, or have access to an outside area, proved particularly challenging in lockdown.

This is further reinforced by a recent survey from the Royal Chartered Institute of Surveys (RICS), where respondents said they predict an 81% increase in desire for properties with gardens or balconies, 74% predict a rise in demand for homes located near parks or green spaces, and 68% think properties with private spaces will be more attractive rather than communal areas.

  • Acre.

Those living in cities are wanting to move out to properties with larger outside private gardens and the Rightmove keyword search is proof people are simply wanting more space.

Having a property on an acre of land holds many opportunities for development or to simply enjoy more outdoor green space. Many have discovered a new love for gardening, according to the online site Growveg.co.uk, gardening allows people to be calmer, more engaged with wildlife, and to slow down their pace of life and connect with nature.

  • I do like to be beside the seaside.

Properties by the sea have always been in demand, but their popularity since lockdown has increased dramatically and Rightmove reports the highest increase in demand in areas of the: Shetland Isles, Sandbanks, St Davids, Haverfordwest and South Devon. Coastal properties of all shapes and sizes are witnessing a boom and there is even more of a premium being placed on sea views than ever before.

Consumers are not only looking for a sea view, but also the change of lifestyle that living near the sea can bring. Many that have dreamt of living by the coast, are now making the move and the extra commute time it may bring for some, is outweighed by the opportunity to work from home and be closer to the sea.  According to the Zoopla ‘Monthly Price Index Report’ they also report an increase in demand in English Coastal cities of Portsmouth, Southampton, and Liverpool.

Wanting to move? Spring can help.

Whatever your demands are when searching for a property, it is clear buyers’ priorities have changed and people are reflecting more on what they and their families need from a home.

If now is the time for you to move, be in control of your home sale and contact Spring. Our home buying service can purchase your home with ease, speed and certainty, allowing you to move on to the next chapter of your life.  

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