Over the bank holiday weekend, my husband received news that his employer has extended its staff furlough scheme until the 31st of July. He works in the financial sector for an estate agency, and so we guess that they will keep him in this furloughed position until mortgage momentum starts gathering again.
Following this news, I was reflecting on the large number of people who are still furloughed or are working from home on full or reduced hours. And this got me thinking! This is a massive opportunity for people to reflect on their lifestyles properly during this time.
It’s been reported that for some, ‘furlough fever’ has already set in. This, allegedly, involves no desire to go back to work at all, ever, because the realisation that spending time at home, doing nothing, and getting paid for it is for some, a dream come true! Long-term this would be impossible, but I’m sure that in households across the country, priorities are being reassessed. This inevitably includes making decisions relating to personal and home circumstances.
With some estate agencies already open with PPE precautions in place, the property market is moving again, and initial reports from some agents indicate that the market has begun to bounce back with immediate flurries of activity.
In my opinion, this is not surprising as whatever the situation, there will always be reasons people will think about moving home, and there are many reasons why properties will come to market post Covid-19.
Couples locked down together 24/7 will, unfortunately, be the final straw for some marriages as they realise they cannot remain together any longer.
Sadly, more properties than usual will come to the market due to the death of a loved one. Particularly as the elderly are more vulnerable to the disease.
Jobs will regrettably have been lost, and homes will need to be sold if mortgage repayments cannot be met once the banks discontinue their mortgage holiday offers.
The whole family at home seven days a week in a house that is a little on the small side will have become a significant issue. Getting under each other’s feet will be the push to upsize for many.
Some people will have enjoyed furlough time or working reduced hours so much that they will want to release equity from their home and downsize. This will reduce their bills and enable them to work fewer hours and still live a comfortable life.
Being unable to go out will have been especially difficult for those living in apartments or properties with no outdoor space to enjoy. These people may look to purchase a property with a garden.
The coronavirus pandemic has brought home to us all that being in a situation like this could very easily repeat itself. If such a pandemic happened again, many people would prefer to be locked down in the countryside rather than a town or city. The view is that it is safer, with fewer people nearby, not to mention the fresh air and access to safe places to spend time.
The flexibility of home working has been a revelation for some and an appealing long-term prospect. People may look for property that includes a study or extra bedroom that can be used as an office.
All those niggly jobs will have finally been completed! People will see their homes in a new light and seek a valuation with a view to selling.
Being at home 24/7 may have highlighted noisy or anti-social neighbours and a desire to move away from them.
All that spare time in lockdown will either have put people off having any more children…or given first timers that window of opportunity they needed to start a family – hence more room is required!
The ‘Road to Damascus’ moment!
Some will decide to sell up, release all their equity and follow their dreams – and why not.
That’s 12 reasons off the top of my head that your potential clients have to request a market appraisal from you or make an offer on a property that you have listed.
All you have to do is make sure you put yourself in front of them by publishing fantastic content so that when they conclude that it’s time to choose an estate agent, they choose you.