A detached thatched cottage in Suffolk

The 10 most in-demand features for buyers and renters

If you’ve been thinking of moving, chances are you’ve already thought about all of the things you’d want your home to have, to make sure it works for you.

Whether you’re ready to roll up your sleeves for a doer-upper project, thinking about donning your gardening gloves, or can’t imagine a dinner party without a softly-lit kitchen island – you’ll probably be searching for a home that matches up with your personal wish-list from the get-go.

And we wanted to see what matters most to movers when they’re searching for their next home. So we looked at more than 600,000 property listings to see which features led to the highest number of enquiries to estate agents. Take a look at the findings…

Fixer uppers are most in-demand, and have a £29,000 lower price tag

It’s probably no surprise that home-hunters are looking for different things, and this is no more apparent than the fact that both ‘renovation project’ and ‘refurbished’ made it into the top 10 most in-demand features.

However, fixer-upper homes, or those that say they’re in need of refurbishment, are at the top of the list for buyers. It’s likely that this is because there are two groups of buyers competing for this type of home: first-time buyers looking for a cheaper property to get on the ladder that they can refurbish over time as they save up enough money, and investors looking to grab a relative bargain and do it up to sell on or rent out.

And the average asking price of a fixer-upper property, which is just below £337,000, is more than £29,000 lower than the current national average asking price of £366,000 for all types of homes.

On the flip side, home-hunters looking for a refurbished, move-in-ready home are paying an extra £70,000 on average – that’s 19% more than the average national house price.

Our property expert Tim Bannister says: “This really shows the different priorities that home-movers have – some are in a more fortunate position to be able to consider buying a newly refurbished home, while others want to put their own stamp on a home and do it up from scratch, or they may realise that if they buy now they can spend time doing up the house a room at a time.”

A place for all your stuff. Literally.

We know a home is so much more than a place for all your stuff, but in the literal sense, it really *is* a place for all your stuff… And finding somewhere to put said stuff was high on movers’ want-lists, with ‘storage space’, ‘cellar’ and ‘loft conversion’ all appearing in the top 10 for buyers, while ‘basement’, ‘shed’ and ‘attic’ all featured in the top 10 for renters.

Get ready to fill that space with all with those seldom-used camping chairs, half-full tins of paint, and those moving boxes you just never get round to unpacking…

The 10 most in demand features for home-buyers

Feature included in property description
1. Renovation project (fixer-upper, in need of refurb)
2. New boiler
3. Loft conversion
4. Storage space
5. Cellar
6. Double glazing
7. Refurbished
8. Chain free
9. Garden
10. Near station

What are renters looking for?

And it’s maybe no surprise that at a time when we’re seeing record rents, we’re also seeing the highest demand for features that could potentially lead to lower energy bills for renters. ‘Double glazing’ came out on top for attracting enquiries, with ‘smart technology’ (such as smart heating systems) at number two, and ‘energy efficient’ at number nine.

Top 10 most in-demand features for renters

Features included in property descriptions
1. Double glazing
2. Smart tech, such as smart heating system
3. Near station
4. Parking space
5. Basement
6. New boiler
7. Shed
8. Attic
9. Energy efficient
10. Open plan

Our property expert, Tim Bannister, says: “This new study could help sellers and landlords when they’re thinking about the different features to highlight on their property listing. It may not seem important to mention that a property has storage space or a new boiler, but our study shows this could make a difference when prospective buyers and renters are deciding which homes to go and view.”

The header image for this article is provided courtesy of Cheffins Residential, Newmarket

READ MORE: What’s happening in the housing market?


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