Home buyers currently value virtual tours, and are moving to new locations to be closer to family or get away from COVID-19 hot spots. In terms of renovation, people are putting more focus on renovating bathrooms, especially in the master suite, and outdoor spaces. A detailed overview of home buying and renovation trends can be found below.
1. Virtual Tours
- 3D virtual tours are becoming more important to home buyers. These are not new, but more companies are using them in their real estate listings today.
- Virtual tours are becoming more popular because they allow people to “tour” potential homes to narrow down the ones they must see in-person, which reduces the amount of foot traffic in the homes.
- Traditional real estate companies (not online-only companies) are starting to implement virtual tours alongside their traditional services.
- Buyers are actually using these tours much more often, with some companies reporting an increase of up to 160% of the use of virtual tours.
- One survey found that 1 in 3 people would prefer to buy a home after only doing a virtual tour, instead of an in-person tour, even after the pandemic is over.
- Zillow stated that 72% of real estate agents that they surveyed have seen so much success with virtual tours that they will continue to offer them after the pandemic.
- Virtual tours have become the go-to tool for home buyers as a direct result of the pandemic because buyers worry about their safety when touring homes.
2. Relocating Due to COVID-19
- Many people want to move closer to family during the pandemic.
- In many US states, travel restrictions have made it hard to visit family, so people are considering moving closer to avoid that issue.
- More people are moving to US states that have lower COVID-19 case numbers.
- One example of this is Connecticut, which is the third most popular state for people to move to, due to their low case counts, with 20% of people buying homes there recently doing so specifically to get away from the virus.
- Accordingly, people are also selling their homes and buying new ones elsewhere to move away from COVID-19 hotspots.
- According to one survey, 37.5% of people who recently moved out of Washington DC and 16% of people who moved out of New York City did so because of the virus.
1. Outdoor Space Renovation
- Outdoor space renovation in the US is up by over 300% because people are looking to spend more time outside without leaving their home due to the virus.
- One survey showed up to 54% of respondents were planning on doing an outdoor renovation during the pandemic.
- Due to the cancellation of many sports, parents are looking to add pools or more outdoor space for athletic activities.
- One survey showed that 26% of parents questioned said they want to add a pool during the pandemic.
- Outdoor renovations are also currently safer, as they allow contractors to work out in the open air and not enter a customer’s home.
2. Bathroom Renovation
- Bathroom renovations are increasingly popular, especially in states like West Virginia, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire.
- One study found that search engine queries for “bathroom” along with “DIY” have soared in recent months.
- During the first six months of 2020, one study found that 46,530 people searched for information regarding bathroom renovations.
- Bathrooms are also a big resell point, so people are choosing to spend their money renovating rooms that will gain them money in the future.
- One survey found that 56% of people who were planning a bathroom remodel decided to continue with it despite the pandemic.
- 25% of people in the above survey said they planned to renovate their master bathroom in the near future after spending more time in it due to the pandemic.