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Homes & Gardens reader survey results
The increased demand for homes in village and countryside locations observed earlier in 2020 has continued, the Savills prime market buyer and seller survey (7 December 2020) shows, with just over one-third of those living in central London and other cities and suburbs preferring this as the next location for their homes. H&G found that 41% of respondents were more likely to consider moving to a rural/village location compared to this time last year.
Despite the continued fascination with house prices, homes mean more than this. H&G found that 69% of respondents said their home was the backdrop to family life and memory making. And the importance of home has increased in the past year. Some 57% of respondents to the survey agree that their home environment is much more important to them than it was a year ago.
Government direction to work from home where possible has profoundly changed how our homes are used. The percentage of working adults who had worked from home at some point in the past seven days varied from a high of 49% (3 to 13 April 2020 and 11 to 14 June 2020) to a lowest figure of 27% (26 to 30 August), according to ONS figures.
It is clear that gardens are valued as areas that can be well utilised, providing space to translate interior functions to the outside and enjoy new activities, along with benefiting from light and air. H&G found that 95% of respondents to its survey enjoy spending time in the garden the same or more than versus the previous year.
More utility from the garden is highly desirable. H&G found that 21% of respondents to its survey now want to create an outdoor eating space, while 34% want a better patio or seating area.
Meanwhile, to boost the range of activities available in the garden 8% of respondents specify a hot tub as a garden feature they’d like to add in 2021, reflecting the demand experienced by John Lewis that led the company to introduce hot tubs to the range of products it offers during 2020.
Creating dedicated work space has become important for many people. H&G found 12% of respondents to its survey had converted a room into an office in the past 12 months.
‘The home office is really where the biggest demand will be going into 2021,’ says Simon Tcherniak, Senior Designer at Neville Johnson. ‘Clients are looking for a dynamic space which allows them the time to focus on their daily tasks, but likewise a space which they can close off in the evening to really benefit from the additional family time we have all been afforded.’
H&G found that 56% of respondents to its survey work at home for 90 to 100% of their working hours now (a 331% uplift versus pre-pandemic). Some 76% now work from home for at least one day per week.
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