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The current pandemic and its economic and social consequences have undoubtedly impacted the real estate industry. However, technology has now made it possible for real estate agents to be more productive than ever before. Even real estate agents who were more conservative to technology are being forced to use various types of social media tools and other technologies to communicate with clients and achieve their individual and organizational goals. 

Real estate companies are preparing for what comes next and what homebuying will look like in this new environment, as it will become more important to optimize their sales funnels, home in on high-value leads, and boost profitability as sales may peak in some markets. While this particular type of situation is pretty unprecedented, we can make some predictions about the future of the real estate market and what recovery will look like in the coming months and years.

Priority on outdoor space

Although it is not new for home buyers to demand outdoor space such as balconies, gardens and terraces, it is expected that these trends to become even more important now and for the rest of 2021. With the movement restrictions being enforced worldwide, many people are resorted to taking shelter under one place. This has made home buyers realize how important it is to have more living space and access to the outdoors. Realtors and real estate agents may have to put additional outdoor spaces in their client’s property and feature them more prominently in their marketing efforts. For properties without outdoor spaces, nearby trails and parks are being mentioned as part of realtors’ promotion.

Embrace properties outside metropolitan areas

With the rise of the work from home concept, home buyers will be less concerned about commute time. The only concern home buyers need to worry about is access to the internet. Not being tied to their job in terms of commuting means that home buyers will expand their home searches away from the pricey properties in city centers, and more towards the suburbs and beyond.In fact, home buyers are embracing life in more rural areas these days. When the availability of jobs nearer to the city is not an issue and social restrictions continue to be implemented, the low prices of rural areas become way more appealing, especially to young homebuyers. From the real estate agent’s point of view, they might want to consider marketing their property to young professionals living downtown.

Multigenerational households will become the new normal

Multigenerational properties are now making a significant comeback. In fact, this was already a trend before most of us even knew what coronavirus was. Factors such as stagnant salaries and high home prices have made multigenerational households a necessity for a large percentage of millennials. According to a survey from John Burns Real Estate Consulting, as many as 41% of homebuyers make considerations like housing an aging parent when looking at homes. Living in the same property in the middle of a pandemic has a number of advantages not just the obvious monetary ones.  Buyers may have emotional and cultural reasons for pursuing multigenerational living options. For one, many people today feel increasingly socially isolated. Moving in together may be an attempt for some to regain a sense of community in a society that can sometimes feel disconnected. Additionally, more people under one roof typically means more belongings. Most multi-generational homebuyers will be looking for homes with plenty of storage space or creative storage solutions as a result.

Home office

The concept of remote work or work from home is not new. The trend is further accelerated following the coronavirus pandemic. The trend of remote work is not going to slow down. The trend is expected to continue even in post-pandemic due to convenience, personal preference, safety and economics. Remote work allows companies to hire talented people from all around the world, and lowers their monthly expenses since they do not need to pay rent for so many physical locations. We are already seeing this being reflected in home buyers. More and more home buyers are changing their home feature priority list, and one of the top features they expect is a home office.

In fact, many households now need more than a single home office. Meanwhile, real estate agents have already begun to highlight the amenities around the home that a person working from home might enjoy. Amenities such as parks, coffee shops, high-speed internet providers, gyms, grocery stores that offer home delivery are among the best-selling pointers for realtors. Today, most if not all companies have implemented a HR system. According to our recent HR survey conducted in August 2020, about 71% of businesses have adopted HR software to handle HR-related processes. The survey also revealed that the top 3 most important features HR professionals look for in a HRMS are: Employee Information Management, Time & Attendance Management and Payroll/Benefits Management.

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It’s impossible to predict the future course of the coronavirus and its resulting economic troubles. However, the real estate market is often known for thriving independently. Innovation and creativity are needed during uncertain times to keep the market afloat, and the real estate industry has been constantly innovating. Whatever the case, real estate cannot simply ‘get through’ the Covid-19 crisis without a significant evolution. Real estate players need to rethink how to design property, build it, market it, and last, but not least, invest in it. A sustained recovery is guaranteed if stakeholders across the sector shift from traditional approaches and embrace new, transformational methods accelerated by tech adoption.

Highlighted Links

Resources and Further Reading 

COVID-19: Global Real Estate Implications

How COVID-19 and the climate are transforming the real estate sector

Covid-19: what is the long-term future of the real estate market?

Multigenerational Trends in the Housing Market