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First insight into buyers’ and sellers’ changing priorities post-virus

Savills has given the industry an insight into how buyers’ and sellers’ priorities may change as the industry returns to work in the coming weeks.

The firm surveyed almost 700 registered buyers and sellers between April 21 and 27 to explore how their attitudes to moving had changed and how that might impact market activity. 

Some responses were predictable, others less so.

Almost 49 per cent said they will be more inclined to work from home even after current restrictions are lifted, so as a consequence 44 per cent said a separate work space in a future home assumed greater importance - and that rises to 61 per cent amongst the under 40s.

Thirty nine per cent of respondents under 50 said they were now more inclined to upsize, rising to 42 per cent among the under 40s. Predictably, the desire for a garden or outdoor space has also become a more pressing consideration for 71 per cent of this age group. 

Amongst wealthy older households there appears to be a growing commitment to downsizing - accelerating an existing trend, with many in this group suggesting they could use released equity to fund their grown up childrens’ property ambitions. 

The desire for space and a greater emphasis on the outdoors was expressed by many respondents. 

Around four in 10 would now find a village location more appealing than previously, while 54 per cent of those with school age children now find the idea of a countryside location more attractive than before the Coronavirus struck. 

In line with Savills research projections, the survey pointed to a slowdown in activity in the short term, with a recovery later this year and into 2021.   

However, while 37 per cent said they were less likely to move within the next six months, 27 per cent believe a move is more likely within this period as a result of their changing priorities post-virus. 


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