We know that space matters in the housing market. It has always been important, but given the events of the past year or so, it is perfectly understandable that buyers want to find a spacious home.
We’ve seen this in our dealings in the local market, and it has been uncovered in various national studies. One of the leading property portals has highlighted the current state of the market, and what people are looking for.
Key takeaways stated by Zoopla:
- Interest in houses for sale has more than doubled as the pandemic drives buyers to search for more space.
- The number of people looking to snap up a family house has soared by 114% compared with levels typically seen at this time of year between 2017 and 2019.
- The average cost of a house has jumped by 7.3% during the past year, while the typical price of a flat has edged ahead by just 1.4%.
Gráinne Gilmore, head of research at Zoopla, said: “There is a continued drumbeat of demand for more space among buyers, both inside and outside, funnelling demand towards houses, resulting in stronger price growth for these properties. Sellers will need to consider this when it comes to pricing expectations.”
What happens next?
- Even though buyer demand for property is dipping, it is 80% higher than usual levels for this time of year
- Even with falling demand, the supply of homes is nowhere near enough to meet demand
- Zoopla research suggests house price growth for all property types will reach 6% in the coming months
- After the stamp duty holiday ends and economic conditions tighten, Zoopla believes house price growth will reach between 4% and 5% by the end of 2021
Will this help first-time buyers?
A first-time buyer looking to buy a flat as opposed to a house might find this to be good news. This is because the cost of flats has risen at a slower pace than overall property values in the past year.
A lot depends on your location:
- Price growth for flats in London has fallen by 0.5% in the past 12 months
- In Scotland, price growth for flats has risen by 5.2% in the same-time
First-time buyers should brace themselves for competition, but this is positive news for people looking to sell their home
Why do people need space?
A study by ConservatoryLand spoke to 2,000 and asked them about the need for space at home. This is a company who specialises in conservatories, so they have a bias in the market, but findings are always interesting:
- 50% of respondents said they would move to a larger home if they had the chance
- The average buyer would spend £10,000 to increase the size of their property
- Fewer than 30% of respondents said they wouldn’t move to a larger property
- 10% of respondents said they would downsize if they had the chance
Why do people need more space?
- 20% of respondents said limited storage was the key reason why they needed more space
- A lack of garden space was said by 17% of respondents
- Not having a spare room was cited by many respondents
- A lack of home office space was also cited by many, and this is likely to increase given the need for remote working
What features would convince people to move?
- An en-suite bathroom was said by 19% of respondents
- To get a spare bedroom for guests was said by 17% of respondents
- Other answers included a garage, a kitchen island, a driveway, swimming pool and home gym