In the wake of new lockdown restrictions across the country, estate agency Yopa has launched its Love Where You Live Guide, revealing the best places to buy in the UK when taking into account new key considerations for property buyers.
Whilst house prices, quality of local schools and low crime levels will likely always remain high on buyers’ lists of priorities, Yopa has determined that buyers are now placing greater emphasis on access to green spaces, job opportunities and proximity to local amenities when deciding where to live. This shift is a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic and resultant lockdowns.
The Love Where You Live Guide is a free tool created by Yopa to help Brits identify the best places to live to meet their individual needs following a year of uncertainty and upheaval.
Cheltenham in Gloucestershire tops the list.
London commuter towns tend to dominate lists such as this but, with the emphasis on office working now reduced, Yopa’s Top 10 includes a mix of areas across the country.
The Top 10 places to lock down a property, according to Yopa:
- Cheltenham, Gloucestershire
- Sale, Greater Manchester
- Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire
- Greater London,Walton-on-Thames, Surrey
- Cambridge, Cambridgeshire
- Crawley, West Sussex
- Edinburgh, Edinburgh
- Harrogate, North Yorkshire
- Brentwood, Essex
Yopa analysed a number of economic and quality of life metrics - including job opportunities, access to green spaces, proximity to schools rated Good or Outstanding by Ofsted, and average local salaries.
A recent survey of over 2,000 British adults commissioned by Yopa and conducted by Censuswide asked people about how their relationships with their homes, families and communities have changed this year.
When asked whether the pandemic urged them to reconsider where in the country they live, 1 in 4 Brits said ‘yes’. This increased to 1 in 3 among those who are now working from home, meaning commutability is no longer of prime significance.
The lockdown introduced in March had many people dreaming of greener pastures, with 1 in 4 people stating that they now feel more inclined to move somewhere with greater access to green spaces and the same number of people wishing they had more garden space.
A strong sense of community is also more important to buyers than it was prior to the pandemic, as are broadband speeds - a result of the shift towards remote working.
Yopa’s Chief Property Analyst Mike Scott said:
“After almost a year of upheaval in all of our personal and professional lives, many people are reconsidering where they live. Everyone will have a different set of move motivators when it comes to choosing an area in which to look for a new home, but Yopa’s recentresearch proves that certain factors have shot to the top of buyers’ priority lists in 2020.
“Commutability has become less important as the country embraces working from home, whilst proximity to green spaces is now vital as people feel cooped up in their homes. Job opportunities and salary levels are also of greater importance in a year that has been marred by furlough, redundancies and job losses.
“Deciding where to move can be difficult and time-consuming at the best of times, not least whilst things in the UK remain so up in the air. We’ve decided to take some of the stress and worry out of this with our comprehensive, easy-to-use Love Where You Live Guide.”