What most homebuyers today are looking for in a home will be completely different than what a homebuyer pre-pandemic look for in a new house.
“The pandemic has brought about a seismic shift in people’s perspective on housing,” said Jordan Ayan, an agent who leads the North Scottsdale Luxury Real Estate Team at the Lifestyle Collection, under Keller Williams Realty in Arizona. “They are thinking more about where they want to be and what kind of environment they want to be in.”
People want to live in a less congested area now. Many homeowners work from home more because of the times so traffic is not a problem anymore. Homebuyers are looking for a more laid-back lifestyle, where they can both work and decompress.
Homebuyers will be looking for very efficient spaces such as tucked away home offices. Home offices have become very popular since the pandemic.
“The office was somewhat of a flex space, previously,” said Laura Powers of the Laura Powers Property Group, part of Compass in Houston. “Maybe it was also a guest bedroom or more of a library. Function has become much more critical.”
Homebuyers want a separate living space from their home office. When working from home, you need a quiet space with privacy. Ideally, the home office would have built-in shelving, space to move around, and good natural lighting.
Homes have become the live, work and play of 2020. Homeowners are taking formal living rooms and updating them to a comfortable place to relax. Many are “tech-free zones” where homeowners can get away from screen time.
Many Realtors have found that homebuyers are seeking larger garages, extended foyers and mudrooms. They are also interested in LEED-certified homes that are environmentally friendly and built to the standards of the U.S. Green Building Council.
Outdoor covered areas such as patios, porches, decks, and outdoor kitchens are another must. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, everyone has been stuck at home. A nice area to enjoy the outdoors is a must during these times. In Florida, Realtors have reported that access to the water has become more popular along with docks, pools, expansive decks, covered patios, fire pits and outdoor kitchens.
In urban areas, homeowners use public parks and greenspace for their outdoor living, however, with the pandemic many of these spaces are restricted. Homebuyers are now seeking an outdoor space included in their urban home.
“Any other time, we would talk about parks and the neighborhood. But now, they might not even be able to use it,” said Patrick Ryan, owner and managing broker at Genuine Real Estate in Chicago. “So outdoor space at home has become huge.”
Homebuyers in the suburbs are seeking homes on a golf course with views of the greens and larger lots. Many even want extra acreage where they can have distance between their neighbors. Others have emphasized a guest house or in-law suite for multi-generational living.
“They want space. They don’t want to be cooped up,” Ryan said. “But they also want community and to be able to connect with their neighbors.”
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