Phil Spencer on the ‘popular hotspots’ buyers are looking for homes

Property expert reveals the latest buying trends for UK

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In a video for Move iQ, founder and TV property expert Phil Spencer talked to the CEO of Propertymark, Nathan Emerson. Propertymark is the leading professional organisation of sales and letting agents in the UK. The property experts discussed the UK housing market, the new challenges buyers and sellers are facing, the impact of the cost of living crisis and interest rates rises.

During their discussion, Phil asked Nathan whether there were any parts of the UK that were particularly “popular” with buyers.

Phil asked: “Given that your member agents are right across the country and you’ve got 18,000 of them, are they seeing any hot spots?

“Are there any kind of emerging areas that you could flag?”

During the coronavirus pandemic, many Britons moved away from the larger cities to more suburban, rural and coastal locations.

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For many people, working from home provided them with the perfect opportunity to create a better work/life balance, move to a home with green space and potentially get more bang for their buck.

Nathan said “traditionally” people move within their own local vicinity which is usually a five to 10-mile radius of where they are.

He continued: “This is pretty typical and one thing we noticed as we went through Covid was people actually making bigger leaps, certainly from the city.

“They were moving out into the countryside or getting a bit further away.

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“‘We’re going to work from home and there’s a whole new world out there and we’re going to live a different lifestyle’.

“The trends are starting to change so we’re not seeing people take such big leaps anymore.

“Now it’s more a case of we’re moving maybe to the outskirts but we’re still commutable.”

Nathan said people returning to the office is also having an impact on buyer “hotspots” across the country.

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He said: “More and more people by and large are starting to return to the office a bit more, partly initially through employers driving it but we are now seeing more and more people wanting to work in the office.

“And obviously, I think whether cost of living is a driver too – that, I don’t know – but I think a lot of people have felt isolated, they have felt lonely, mental health has been a major thing.

“People’s living environment is important. So if we say hotspots, I would say the suburbs surrounding the cities have become quite popular.

“People who are a little bit further out found prices were affordable to make that leap and they’ve done that so we’re starting to see more normalisation really.”

Phil said people are starting to move for more “normal reasons” for schools and jobs but they’re not moving large distances like during the pandemic.

Average UK house prices hit a record high in August, according to Halifax, increasing by 0.4 percent month on month.

The new data revealed annual house prices to be up 11.5 percent in August.

A typical property now costs an average of £294,260 in the UK.

However, some experts have warned that house prices could take a downturn due to cost of living pressures and rising interest rates.

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