Houses Are Sold Faster After the COVID-19 Lockdown
Usually, around this time of year, a three-bedroom home is sold for 24 days. The property portal Zoopla reports that this mid-August pattern has changed this year. The same property is now sold 12 days faster, as the research suggests.
On the other hand, one-bedroom apartments now take about 34 days, and even this is faster than in previous years.
Even though the time it takes for someone to sell their property is reduced the total number of real estate sales is down this year across the UK. However, sings like these suggest that there is a mini-boom on the market. Zoopla even claims that sales are up 78% when compared with the five-year average for the same period.
The chart below illustrates the current trend in the UK real estate market. On the left are the typical properties that are listed for sale and below are the number of days it takes to sell them.
Source: Zoopla House Price Index
Why are houses now more popular than apartments? That is the main question that the latest real estate sales boom is throwing at us.
The answer to this question, as with many other issues of today, is linked with the coronavirus pandemic. People through the UK are changing their daily habits because of the lockdown. The most important habit is the fact that a lot more people are now working from home.
Before the pandemic people were going to work every day. Because of this there was not so much need for large living spaces, especially if you do not have a family with a few children. However, the tides have turned and people are now willing to work from home. This naturally creates a bigger demand for larger living spaces and this explains the new trend on the real estate market.
We should not ignore the stamp duty holiday that is in power since last month. It also influences the increased demand for property. However, it is more likely that the past few months of inactivity and a ban on property sales created the present mania.
On the Rightmove website, we can even see new advice for potential property sellers. Before the pandemic, it was advised that you take good pictures of your kitchen and to make it stand out. Now, the website recommends you make sure your garden is shown in the best angels. Because are now more interested in the garden.
Sings as these show us that people’s interests are changing. Most of us would prefer to be in lockdown in a house that has a garden. Gardens can change the entire experience of lockdown and they give you the chance to spend time out in the sun. However, apartments are not losing their popularity because of the increased interest in houses.
We should not judge the market based on the responses people have to lockdown. This can only be a periodical occurrence. City centers are still the hub of all commerce and cultural activity and most of us prefer to stay close to the action. That is why it is highly unlikely that we will see any long-lasting changes in property sales trends.