Things buyers are looking for in a new home

Sam Mitchell, chief executive of online estate agent Strike, highlights the things buyers are looking for right now.

More space
According to a recent survey of home movers from Strike, wanting a bigger home is the number one reason people move.

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To showcase what your home can offer, it’s a good idea to strip away some of your furniture where you can, so clutter is minimal, and rooms look tidy. It will help buyers understand how a space will work for them.

Laundry room
Often overlooked, but never unappreciated, laundry rooms have found themselves at the top of almost everyone’s priorities list. According to a Kiplinger article, in fact, 91 per cent of buyers want laundry rooms in their new homes, and first-time buyers are no exception. Perhaps it has to do with needing more space, or maybe it’s because they are tired of using shared, communal laundry rooms at their previous apartment complexes, but first-time buyers have expressed the need to have a laundry room.

Read more: The underestimated link between home and happiness

Having that separate room for things such as folding or ironing clothes helps to keep the mess out of the living space and potential buyers will see it as a huge benefit.

Homeworking opportunities
Many people are likely to spend more time working from home in the future, even after pandemic restrictions have lifted.

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Previous research by Strike found not having an office space at home has become a ‘deal-breaker’ for a quarter of prospective buyers.

You don’t always need a separate room to create an office space. You could consider how a room could be rearranged to allow space for a desk, for example.

Patio or green space
When most buyers see a house with a really nice backyard, they start to envision themselves sitting outdoors with friends having drinks. Outdoor areas are also a great way to get more living space without the cost of a large-scale home addition.

Read more: Experts reveal the pros and cons of artificial lawn

Strike sales data suggests there’s been an uplift in people looking to move from urban to rural areas in the past year.

While you can’t physically pick up your home and move it to the countryside if you’re based in a city, there may be surroundings, such as attractive nearby parks or other amenities, that you can highlight.

If you are in the countryside, highlight any good transport links and estimated travel times.

Outdoor impressions

Four in 10 buyers say they are moving for a bigger garden or outside space, so make sure yours is in tip-top shape. Even raking leaves off the grass will instantly give the space a cleaner look.

Outdoor lighting
Illuminating a well-manicured lawn with exterior lighting can help grab potential buyers’ attention before they even set foot in the front door. Options include spotlights, walkway lights and pendant lights.

Aesthetics aside, exterior lighting also serves as an added safety feature for your home, motion-sensor lights, for example, turn on automatically whenever there is movement outside your house.

Read more: Home security tips from an expert

Online impact
Making your property stand out online is essential, as many potential buyers will use virtual viewings.

Virtual viewings mean anyone not comfortable with in-person viewings can still take a look. Strike’s recent research found that 51 per cent of movers want agents to make it easy to do viewings online. You can do a lot with Zoom, WhatsApp, Skype, and all of the other video calling software we’ve become so familiar with over the past year.

Are you thinking about moving in the near future? What are the must-have features on your list?

– With PA

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