It’s safe to say COVID-19 has changed the world as we know it. As Australians move in and out of lockdown, we’ve seen many behavioural trends emerge showing how we’re adapting to our ‘new normal’. These trends are now emerging in property, in terms of where and how we want to live.
Aussies Want to Live Near Family
Australians now want to live closer to family and friends rather than work, shows new research. The change in attitude has been brought about by the impacts of Covid-19.
The survey, conducted by RSL Art Union in December and again in May, looked at what makes a “dream home” for Australians.
The December survey found that more people valued proximity to work or places they regularly visited (14%), than those who wanted to be closer to their family and friends (10%).
In comparison, when the same survey was held in May, 77% valued proximity to family rather than work.
RSL Art Union General Manager, Tracey Bishop says: “I think these unusual times have changed our perspective and when we asked our customers, the results showed a shift away from the preference to have their dream house near work.”
In other findings, RSL discovered a home near the beach; a house with a view; or a house with a big backyard or garden shed were highly desirable.
Aussies Want New Flexibility From Their Living Spaces
New home buyers and those building their new home currently are approaching their floor plans differently.
Home builder and design company Porter Davis, have seen a number of new style trends emerging in the past few months.
Let there be light
We’re all spending a lot more time indoors than we’re used to, and more customers are now craving large, airy spaces.
A great way to bring light and air in a double storey build is with a void, which works to bring in natural light and opens up a room to create more space, without actually needing to expand the size of the floorspace.
Customers are also choosing dramatic voids to create a sharp contrast between the main living areas and the rest of the home.
The living room has now become the sanctuary, and we’ve seen customers put more thought into how to turn their living room into a beautiful space that their family can retreat to at the end of their day.
This helps create a mental disconnect between work or school and life, which is so important now that we are not necessarily physically leaving our offices and schools at the end of the day.
Homeschooling study zones
For families with young children or teenagers, their lifestyle has been significantly impacted due to homeschooling.
Never before have we had so many conversations with our customers about ‘study zones’ and ‘work zones’.
No longer is it enough to simply pop a desk in their child’s bedroom for them to study from.
In fact, parents are wanting to move away from this completely to ensure their children are not spending all day in their rooms.
When it comes to creating a dedicated study space, parents are opting for these to be on the ground floor, down the hallway from where they’ll be working. This enables each family member to have their own space, while also making it easy for the child to yell out if they have a question throughout the day.
Inclusion of ‘nooks’
We’re also increasingly building small ‘nook’ off areas in the kitchen or lounge, where customers can keep a laptop set up for any ‘after hours’ school or office work, or to pay bills and do other life admin.
These nooks allow children to do homework while their parents cook, or allows parents to do work in the evenings without having to remove themselves and go to their home office.
Another trend we’ve noticed is that customers are wanting to get more out of their rooms.
Rather than creating a room for a specific reason, they’re creating multi-purpose rooms that can change from day to night, to cater for different needs.
For example, we’re now building rooms that might be a study zone during the day, and easily converts to a home theatre at night and on the weekends.
Creative use of space
A trend we weren’t surprised to see is more customers wanting larger blocks of land, so they can have gardens and increase the amount of outdoor space they have at home.
Unfortunately, modern development blocks are usually limited in land size. Due to this, we’ve also seen an increase in demand for double story homes to make the most of their grass space, and we predict this trend will continue.
Customers are also getting creative with the space they’ve been given. Some are opting to close in outdoor terraces upstairs to create a space where they can separate themselves from the hub of family life.
We’ve seen this especially in those working in corporate roles, who need a quiet and private space for confidential business calls and to ensure their children don’t pop up in the background of their zoom call.
Terry Ryders Hotspotting Report