According to real estate websites, some homebuyers’ preferences seem to be shifting to flats as the cost of maintaining a home is rising.
More than a quarter (26.8%) of new buyers are looking for a one- or two-bedroom apartment, according to Zoopla, as mortgage rates have risen along with other household costs in recent months. Up from 22.2% in January 2022.
Three-bedroom homes remain the most in-demand property type, with 38.9% of new buyers looking for them, according to the website, down from 43.7% in January 2022. increase.
The share of people looking for a three-bedroom apartment has risen slightly from 3.4% to 3.7% over the past year.
Demand for four-bedroom homes appears to be holding up, with 14.0% of new buyers looking for these properties up from 13.5% in January 2022.
Some existing homeowners are hesitant to see if a significant price drop will materialize and how far mortgage rates will drop before entering the market.
Zoopla suggested that buyers are considering expanding their budgets further.
Outside London, the average two-bedroom apartment listed on Zoopla costs £196,000, nearly £100,000 cheaper than the average three-bedroom house (£293,000).
According to the website, the largest percentage increase in demand for apartments has been in towns within commuting distance of major cities such as Slough, Watford, Huddersfield and Stockport.
The survey results used data from a proprietary website based on prospective buyers who inquired about homes listed on Zoopla and contacted realtors to arrange viewings.
Zoopla also suggests that more people may consider downsizing to smaller properties with lower running costs in the coming months, which should support housing market activity in 2023. may be useful for
Zoopla Executive Director Richard Donnell said:
“Given the hit to purchasing power from rising mortgage rates, there has been a clear shift towards flats as early buyers focus on value for money and adjust their expectations.
“Some existing homeowners are hesitant to see if there will be a significant price drop and how far mortgage rates will drop before entering the market.
“We believe there is room for further improvement in housing demand in the coming weeks.
“Anyone serious about selling needs to be realistic about the asking price and make sure this matches what the buyer is willing to pay.”
Tom Ashwood, Director of London agency Tom Ashwood Real Estate, said:
“In my opinion, it’s not just the housing market, it’s the much-publicized cost-of-living crisis.
“I can say that the desire to buy is definitely still there.
“Managing expectations for all sellers is a key factor in achieving sales in today’s market, and being honest is really the best bet.
“If the price of the property that the buyer is looking at does not match their expectations, and if the agent lists the property at a higher price to appease the seller and win that business, demand automatically subsides. will be transformed.”
Sarah Coles, senior personal finance analyst at financial services firm Hargreaves Lansdowne, said some buyers may be willing to take the plunge if they can negotiate a good price cut. Stated.