Homeowners more ‘house-proud’ since pandemic

Homeowners have become increasingly ‘house-proud’ since the start of the Covid pandemic, according to new data.

Estate agents suggest properties coming onto the market are better presented than they were before the pandemic, largely thanks to a lockdown-inspired increase in home improvements.

Estate agents suggest they now consider 48% of properties coming to the market ‘ready to move into’ – meaning they’re in the best condition and ideally presented. In 2019 that figure was just 28%. They also seeing fewer ‘doer uppers’ coming to the market. In 2019, 22% of properties coming to the market required renovation. Now estate agents suggest that figure is just 9%*.

Danny Luke, whose company Quick Move Now is behind the data, has some thoughts on why this change has occurred: “The Covid pandemic forced a large number of people to spend significantly more time in their homes. This inspired them to make home improvements that may otherwise have been neglected. Lockdowns and other restrictions provided homeowners with the time to carry out improvements, whilst cancelled luxuries such as holidays and hobbies provided additional funds to complete the tasks. During the pandemic, we saw paint sale up 47%, building materials up 31.4%, and tools and equipment up 14.7%. This trend seems to have continued far beyond the pandemic.

“We also can’t ignore the role that social media has played in inspiring homeowners to take on their own home improvements. Accounts dedicated to home interiors and DIY improvements dominate much of Instagram and Tiktok, proving hugely popular with their audiences. Do a quick search on either platform and you will find multiple home improvement accounts with half a million or more followers.

“What’s really interesting about this development – which gathered pace during the pandemic – is that these house-proud accounts are reaching an audience that has previously been largely disengaged with DIY: young people and women. The impact of this shift can be seen in figures from DIY brands, which suggest 67% of DIYers are now female.

“The new-found British love for interior design and DIY doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon. 93% of homeowners have said they are considering a DIY project this year. This increased interest in home improvement means that properties coming onto the market often require less work that they might have done pre-pandemic. In 2019, estate agents estimated that 22% of properties coming onto the market required more than £10,000 spending on them. This year, that figure is down to 14%.

“This is great news for those looking to buy a house, who might struggle to find significant renovation budgets in the current climate.”

*stats taken from Quick Move Now research with 4,614 estate agents

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