The arrival of the coronavirus has left no one indifferent. In just a few months, COVID-19 has turned our lives upside down. This crisis is changing the way we work, study, shop, interact… In short, the way we live.
As could not be otherwise, this has also had a great impact on the real estate sector, a sector closely related to one of the most primary needs of human beings: the search for shelter. In our homes, we feel safe and protected from the virus. This crisis has also forced us to spend a lot of time indoors.
Not only that, but now we hardly ever go to other homes, either to stay there on vacation or to visit relatives. Our homes have become leisure centers and temporary offices. They have also become drop-off points and even makeshift gyms.
While we hope that this is a temporary crisis – since the arrival of the vaccine sows the seeds of hope – there are many things that will never be the same again, globally and also in specific sectors such as the real estate market. Today, in the CEU IAM Blog, we take a look at four real estate trends that the spread of the coronavirus in Spain has brought with it. Are they here to stay or are they just passing trends?
A bet on new housing
The first wave of the crisis revealed a certain weariness in Spanish housing. Naturally, spending so much time between four walls led us to ask ourselves what we really wanted our homes to look like. In fact, the real estate portal Idealista reports that between May and October, searches for new-build apartments and villas increased by 36.8%.
It is not easy to predict whether this preference for new housing will last over time, as it must be taken into account that this rise is recorded just after coming out of strict confinement. However, the Via Celére Observatory of housing in Spain indicates that, in the next five years, 42% of Spaniards plan to change their home. Of these, two thirds would opt for a new home. The main motivation is the search for a better home.
The need for a place to telecommute
If there is one thing that seems to be here to stay, it is telecommuting. Of course, not all companies will opt for remote work, but these months have served as a testing ground to accelerate the transition process towards a hybrid model. The data are convincing: 72% of professionals who have worked remotely in recent months prefer to continue doing so. If companies want to attract talent, they will have to bet more on this alternative.
What does all this mean for the housing market? Whether it’s because they work from home or because they want to be prepared for it, many professionals have realized that they need to have adequate workspace within their home. This has had an impact both on the sale of desk furniture, monitors and laptops and on the search for housing.
Spaniards need a place to work remotely. To respond to this new need, many builders are adapting their floor plans, giving homes more space or an extra room. They are also trying to meet new expectations in housing, such as apartments having terraces or balconies.
So what will happen to offices? A greater commitment to teleworking need not lead to the disappearance of offices, especially since the star model is the hybrid. However, teleworking seems to be opening the way to a new conception of spaces: more flexible, more focused on people, designed for meetings, with green spaces…
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