Anti-social neighbours are the biggest turn-off to prospective homebuyers, according to a survey of more than 4,000 people by PrimeLocation.com. Around 57 per cent said loud or anti-social neighbours are the most likely reason for being put off a home purchase.
Homebuyers in the East and North East of England are most put off by the thought of bad neighbours (61 per cent) while those in London appear much less concerned (52 per cent).
Security ranked very highly as an important factor in a property being considered as ‘prime’ with private gates and security cameras coming in above swimming pools, tennis courts and walk-in wardrobes as must-haves.
Lawrence Hall of Primelocation.com, said: “Discerning buyers don’t simply look for a good location but want to live in a good neighbourhood too. The quality of the neighbours and the security of the property are both clearly important factors for ‘prime’ buyers.”
A second survey from Yorkshire Building Society Trust, suggests that less than half of people in the UK trust their neighbours. Only 46 per cent said they trust the people living closest to them while 28 per cent do not trust their neighbours and more than a quarter do not even know who lives next door to them.
Almost two-thirds of people aged 55 or older said they trust their neighbours, but only 30 per cent of 16-24-year-olds feel the same way.
Scottish and Welsh residents seem to be the most community-minded, with 39 per cent of householders in both countries willing to make new people feel at home, compared to only 13 per cent in London.
Nationally, one in ten said they were suspicious of new residents, with another 14 per cent saying they were less trusting of people from outside their own communities.
Chris Pilling, Yorkshire Building Society's Chief Executive, said: "The UK has always been very proud of its community spirit but it seems neighbourliness is not as prevalent as we might think."
Prof Karen Pine, of the University of Hertfordshire's School of Psychology, said: "Social mobility is increasing and fewer people are being raised in and living in close-knit communities. This means people are increasingly less likely to form strong bonds with the people who live near them. Many younger people create communities online these days, rather than with their neighbours.
"As humans we have evolved with a certain innate mistrust of people who are different. Oour ancestors would have had to protect their family and food supplies and newcomers might have been a threat to this."
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