The consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic is that now many people are now working from home. This has become a new normal and it looks as if this is going to continue for the next few years. A new study has in fact suggested that this may even be influencing the prioritises of house hunters.
Research group, OMDIA, asked 294 estate agents across the UK about which single factor they found homeowners were claiming was the most important factor whilst looking for their next home. The top 5 factors are as followed:
- Size of property (23%)
- Broadband quality (20%)
- Number of bedrooms (18%)
- Age of property (10%)
- Access to transport (9%)
Since working from home has become normal life for many professionals, its no surprise that broadband quality was the second most important factor to home owners. In fact, since the start of the pandemic back in 2020, 69% of agents have witnessed an increase in enquiries about the quality of the broadband connection at the marketed property in question.
Did you know that a good broadband connection can actually add more than £5,000 to the price of your house? This is according to 37% of property sales professionals questioned.
Specific areas where reliable broadband is in high demand includes Scotland and the Southwest. Across the nation, 38% of agents that were questions said that it was a top three priority for buyers.
Other findings from the research include:
- Nearly 9 in 10 estate agents stated tat their clients were looking for properties with broadband speeds greater than 100Mbps
- 34% of buyers were looking for speeds about 300Mbps – three times higher than the current national average speed. Demand for this was strong mainly in the Northwest (43%) and London (42%)
- 70% of agents also believe that a gigabit broadband service to every home would boost or significantly boost demand for homes in their area.
“Now with so many people working at home, and relying on the internet for things like education and healthcare, broadband availability is an essential service. When looking for a new home, its fundamental to their thinking and people aren’t prepared to compromise.”
Huawei Executive vice president Jeremy Thompson commented: “Connectivity is now a crucial part of many people’s lives and it comes as no surprise to us that it is the second most important factor for UK house buyers. The pandemic really emphasized the huge importance of reliable, secure and fast broadband and puts it firmly into the category of essential utilities like electricity and water.”