Rightmove reports that village enquiries double

More homebuyers currently living in some of the biggest UK cities are planning to move to village locations, according to new analysis from Rightmove.

Across June and July, the property specialist recorded that the number of buyer enquiries from people living in ten cities increased by 78% overall compared to the same period last year as the market picked up.

Data shows that the breakdown of where potential homebuyers are enquiring to shows that village locations are up by 126% compared to towns, which are up by 68%.

The number of enquiries from Liverpool residents looking for a village move was up by 275% compared to last year, compared to a 63% increase in enquiries to towns.

This was followed by Edinburgh where village enquiries saw a 205% rise, and Birmingham, up 186%. Only one out of the ten biggest cities, Leicester, has seen a bigger increase in enquiries to move to towns than villages.

Rightmove property expert, Miles Shipside, commented: “We saw a shift as early as April in more people living in cities enquiring about moving out of that city, and this trend has continued.

“The most popular village moves are still within the same region the home-hunters are currently in, as it’s likely they’ll keep their current job but may have the flexibility to commute less often and set up their working space at home.”

Since the housing market reopened in May, Rightmove suggested there has been a “rush of buyers”, leading to a number of demand and traffic records.

New analysis from the property expert revealed there were 66% more active buyers this July than in the same month last year, as the delayed spring market continues into summer. The total number of buyers year-to-date is also up 6% compared to the same period in 2019, which Rightmove said indicates that a new group of buyers has now entered the market.

“Analysis on the number of active buyers in market both now and across the year so far shows it’s not just pent-up demand being released and buyers returning to the market after the pause,” Shipside said.

“It looks like the market has not only recovered all of the buyers that were lost throughout lockdown, but there’s also a new group of buyers now in market, prompted to move by the priorities for their home changing during lockdown, with the additional catalyst of the temporary stamp duty holiday turning the heads of homeowners.

“It’s worth noting that some of these buyers may have been looking to move later this year anyway, so we won’t have a clear picture on how many sales will have been lost in 2020 until early next year.”

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