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One in six people would put offer on a property after virtual viewing, poll finds

Majority of respondents say they are just as likely, or more likely, to move despite pandemic

Steve Richmond
Thursday 16 July 2020 13:01 BST
Nearly half of those polled said they now consider the garden the most important feature
Nearly half of those polled said they now consider the garden the most important feature (AFP/Getty)

One in six people in Britain would consider putting in an offer after a virtual property viewing — without ever visiting the house.

A study of 2,000 adults also found one third are happy to make a first judgement on whether they like the look of a property from an online viewing only, as long as they can get a really good idea of what it is like inside and out.

The average ‘virtual viewing’ takes around 26 minutes, during which time prospective owners would ideally like to see 13 photos and six videos — with 68 per cent wanting to see every room of the house.

Being able to see garden size is a must for 61 per cent of respondents, while 56 per cent want to get a concept of space.

And six in 10 want to get a feel of how much work needs doing.

It also emerged four in 10 adults would also like to get an idea of whether there is room for existing furniture and 47 per cent expect to be able to see if there are good views out of the windows.

Angela Wallace, divisional sales director for Purplebricks, said: “The property industry is adjusting to huge changes in how buyers want to view homes.

“It’s never been more important to offer virtual viewings and as the results show, more and more people are open to putting in an offer without necessarily seeing the property in person.

“Wants and desires seem to have changed lately with much more thought going into the functionality of a home.

“And there’s a huge desire for more than just a tidy garden space — buyers are now looking for this additional outdoor space to accommodate more than just a space to sit in on a warm day.

“It’s all about multifunctional space.”

The study also revealed that despite fears the housing market would stall following the pandemic, more than half of adults said they are just as likely, or even more likely, to move to a new house — with the latest stamp duty holiday adding extra appeal.

Were respondents to consider a purchase now, 47 per cent consider a garden the most important feature, with three quarters believing it’s important that a rear garden works in a variety of different functions.

It also emerged that 44 per cent of homebuyers would now be looking for space both inside and outdoors which they can maximise to its full potential.

And 37 per cent are looking to escape city life for the country.

Previously, more than a quarter of house hunters have spoken directly to the owners when they’ve been interested in a property, while one in six have either peeked through the window or spoken to the neighbours.

Almost four in 10 have also driven past multiple times.

The study, carried out via OnePoll, also revealed nearly half of respondents were actively house hunting — and said rooms being made to look light and airy, sparkling clean and top presentation were vital in making a property look appealing.


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