As we navigate life with COVID-19, we are learning how to shift our habits to protect ourselves, our loved ones, and our communities. Folks are spending more time than usual at home, and the real estate industry is starting to see priorities change to adjust to this new normal (yes, I said it!) . We’ve outlined the trends we’re observing as the busy real estate season here in Colorado Springs swings into high gear. You can use our observations and tips below to improve your space for yourself or for potential buyers if you are planning to sell in the near future.
It’s natural for human kind to seek the company of others, but this pandemic has made it very clear that being too close can be dangerous. It is not surprising that areas with more space have received increased attention since we have opened up for business again. Home buyers are seeking more space, more land, and fewer people. For some people, this means just getting away from downtown and shifting to the suburbs. Others are looking for acreage. Land purchases have increased this year and these properties are going faster than usual.
Make sure to contact a land purchase professional if you are considering buying land to build a home. Mineral and water rights and other details of a land purchase can be difficult to navigate and it’s best to have an agent advocating for you. We are happy to match you with a great professional to guide you! Contact us to get started: 719-219-9739 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Related Reading: 14 Questions to Ask when Purchasing Land
Closer to Family
What’s really important? Connection. Now more than ever we are working with buyers and sellers who want to move closer to family. We are also seeing an increase in people choosing multi-generational living situations. This helps alleviate financial stress by pooling resources and enables homeowners to care for each other like elderly parents or disabled family members or simply spend more quality time.
Outdoor Space: The Front Porch
When the weather warmed up enough here in Colorado Springs to start enjoying more outdoor time, everyone was suddenly working on larger than usual landscaping projects.
Many people are adding new features to the yard that expand and enhance the quality of the usable outdoor space. We have noticed more and more people shifting some of their attention from their backyard spaces to the front. This could be something as simple as adding an extra set of bistro chairs to the porch. The front of the house offers more opportunities to interact with neighbors as they stroll by and bring some much-needed social interaction while we continue to practice social distancing.
Outdoor Space: The Backyard
Many homeowners started to think about how to make their backyard more functional and fun. We’ve included some ideas below to help improve your backyard space:
- Apply a fresh coat of paint or sand and re-stain the fence or the deck and repair any unsightly areas.
- New water restrictions in Colorado Springs have many people considering xeriscape or artificial turf for easy care. How about a pollinator garden to attract butterflies and other helpful insects?
- Vegetable gardens have been a huge pandemic trend. This also gives a sense of independence and pride.
- Create more privacy around your deck or patio with plants or lattices.
- Design a calming or meditation area.
Many homeowners took a more critical look at their home to see what they could do to transform their abode for this new lifestyle. After homeowners were finished purging unwanted items, cleaning and organizing the home, visiting the local Home Depot or Lowe’s was a very welcomed option to get out of the house. We’ve noticed 5 major areas that homeowners have focused on for their home improvement projects:
1. Let there be light
Other home features have historically been prioritized over a bright and light home, but many home buyers have recently declined to offer on a home because it seemed too dark. Increasing the amount of light in your home will make your home more marketable and attractive to buyers and could will lift your mood.
Tips for adding light:
- Add floor lamps, under cabinet lighting.
- Remove heavy window coverings and replace them with lighter ones. Or leave them off all together.
- Repaint in a lighter color.
- Add a large mirror to reflect existing light.
- Remove trees and shrubs in front of your home that might be reducing the light coming into your home.
- Install a solar tube for more natural light in small and dark spaces (in most cases your HOA can not prohibit installation of these solar tubes).
- Add skylights and replace windows.
2. Space for cooking
Sharing a meal has always been a big part of families. Now, even people who didn’t normally cook suddenly found time to start experimenting more in the kitchen the last several months. The open concept trend of the past few years means that most kitchens are large enough to gather and spend time together.
Tips to improve your kitchen:
- Sort, organize and clean.
- Replace the hardware on your cabinets and drawers.
- Reduce noise by adding soft close hinges.
- Paint your walls or add an additional accent with wall paper that can give your kitchen a homier feel.
- Add some pillows to stools to make sitting at the counter more comfortable.
- Add natural wood. Maybe you have a white kitchen and you don’t plan on changing the cabinets? Consider bringing in several oversized cutting boards.
- Do you have enough room in your kitchen to stage a cozy corner? Add a couple of comfy chairs, pillows, and a small table. Who says you the only thing you can do in a kitchen is cook?
3. Creating privacy
While we have an intrinsic desire to connect and be with others, even the biggest extroverts need some space to recharge and recover. If you can’t get away from your home because of a pandemic, the next best thing is to look for spaces in your home to create these private or quiet spaces.
Tips for creating a quiet space:
- Exclude some areas of your home from your whole house sound system.
- Look for an underused space. The famous “Harry Potter Room” (usually it’s the area under the stairs in the basement that has been dry-walled and finished) provides enough room for a small lounge chair and a lamp.
- If you’ve ever wondered what to do with the space in the basement that doesn’t have any windows and therefore cannot be a bedroom consider making it a yoga room. It needs to be out of the way so a door would be perfect to shut out the world
- Use a bookshelf to visually separate an area in a room. Make it cozy and comfy. Time out is not just for little kids–it’s great for adults as well.
4. Home Office? Home office!
A usable home office with doors is something we see buyers requesting more and more. Prior to the pandemic, kids might have had a homework space and there were office spaces in many homes. But these spaces usually seemed quite underutilized. How things change! Now the home office has morphed into one of the most important rooms in the home.
Improve your home office:
- Invest in a great office chair.
- Consider investing in more functional office furniture and office supplies. It’s all about organization in this room.
- Have you ever tried a standing desk?
- Is there a door? If not, you might have to bite the bullet and install one.
- How is your reception in the room? Do you need an additional WI-FI or a booster to increase the strength of your WI-FI signal?
- You never had plants in this room. You forgot to water them because you never spent any time there. Now is the time to change that. It will lift your mood and potentially increase your productivity.
5. Energy Efficient Features
Buyers have definitely become more aware of these features as utility usage increases during extended stays at home, and they are increasingly requesting them (especially in new construction homes).
Our real estate team is always here to help and answer questions. Call 719-219-9739 or email email@example.com.