Remote Working Continues To Shape Housing Market In 2021

22nd February 2021 posted in Sellers Buyers

At Hunters West Hampstead, we know the London housing market is still active, and many people are looking for guidance and advice.

Even though the country has been in lockdown since early January, the housing market has remained open. We are operating, and we are helping a lot of buyers and vendors.

While 2021 is still in its infancy, the factors which influence the housing market and buyer decisions are apparent. Remote working is a major issue for many people these days, and it is a major factor in the property market.

We have seen this in our dealings with clients and customers, and we have seen this in studies and reports across the country. If you are looking to make an informed decision when it comes to the housing market, get in touch.

People need to make a sensible decision when it comes to property market moves

Nicky Stevenson is a known name in the UK housing market, and she has spoken at length of how remote working has shaped the property market.

Stevenson says: “According to data provided by analysts Emsi, recruiters New Street Consulting Group has said that in November 2019 there were 26,600 jobs advertised that allowed remote working, last year November that number had increased to 80,700. After the pandemic, we could see people spend a few more days a week in an office or shared workspace, but I believe that a hybrid way of working is a lockdown legacy that will remain, and a home office will continue to be a must-have for many going forward. Many people have become accustomed to working from home and will want to continue to do so, even once the world has returned to a normal that possibly resembles a pre-Covid time.”

Reliable broadband is essential for home workers

There is no denying that reliable broadband and a dedicated workspace are vital in making the most of working from home. All vendors and buyers should bear this in mind when they make a move in the housing market.

She comments: “As businesses and remote working has changed, so has people’s homebuying behaviour with a home office and broadband speed becoming far more important to buyers. In a recent Home Moving Trends survey conducted by the Property Academy, on a national level, 37% of participants sited broadband as being more important now than before the pandemic, while 35% said that space to work from home and a garden was now more important to them. Looking at the prime market and specifically, 46% said that broadband speed was more important, with 40% saying a space to work from home is more important.”

The freedom which comes from remote working has brought many benefits to people, and it is likely that this will be a considerable factor in the property market as we move forward.

Stevenson adds: “Of the those who were surveyed, 22% of people selling their property said that their primary reason for moving was a purely personal choice and wanting to relocate. Others said they were looking to upgrade to a larger property (14%), with around 12% saying they were looking for a change in scenery and lifestyle."

What is interesting to note about the survey is people’s views on estate agents and their need for an office.

Stevenson continues: “23% of participants said that it is not important to them whether an estate agent has an office on the high street, with 33% saying it is a nice to have. When asked if they visited their selling agent’s office, 19% said they had visited prior to instructing the agent, with 32% saying they visited during the sales process. The remaining 49% said that they did not visit the agent’s office, or their agent did not have an office. Rather than looking at whether an agent had an office or not, factors that influenced a seller’s choice on who they instructed included aspects such as the seller’s confidence in the agent’s marketing ability, the agent’s excellent market knowledge and that they liked and trust them.”

Stevenson concludes: “So Covid-19 has certainly impacted buyer behaviours and priorities in a future home. It has also impacted human behaviour, and priorities of those in the workplace, and therefore likely to impact our own sector and how estate agents operate. More flexible working will be desired by many, and therefore to recruit and retain the best people, estate agents will need to evolve. I think we will continue to see more and more agents wanting the freedom to be able to work with increased flexibility, especially with buyer behaviour showing that an office is less essential.”

If you need any help or guidance regarding property matters, please get in touch. As your local housing market specialists, we will do what we can to ensure you make your next house move in style. Contact Hunters West Hampstead today for all your housing and letting needs.