It’s no secret that the COVID-19 pandemic has affected nearly every industry in the world, and the housing market is no exception. With so many people making the shift to remote work for safety reasons during the pandemic, it has been speculated that this trend may continue even once it is safe to fully return to work. The benefits of being able to work from home extend far beyond that of just safety. Many people enjoy the flexibility that it comes with, allowing them to skip the morning and evening commute times and have those extra few hours in their day for other activities. With people spending more time in their houses than ever before, it is important to consider how this shift to remote work in the future will affect the housing market post-pandemic. Let’s start by looking at some statistics.
What Will Remote Work Look Like Post-Pandemic?
According to a study conducted by Apartment List in May 2021, it is expected that 4 in 10 workers expect to have remote work flexibility. 21% of these respondents expect to be fully remote, while 19% expect some sort of hybrid schedule. Therefore, with approximately 40% of American workers continuing to work from home in some capacity post-pandemic, it’s important to consider how this will affect their housing preferences.
How Will This Affect Their Housing Preferences?
Because of this new flexibility in their work schedules, a majority of these remote workers say that it will impact their housing and location preferences. According to the same survey, 42% of expected remote workers plan to move within the next 12 months. Among those movers, 35% plan to relocate to a more affordable market. We’ll start to see people moving out of some of the nation’s most expensive markets, such as San Francisco, New York City, D.C., etc., and into more affordable areas such as Phoenix, Austin, and Nashville. Those who plan to move note that finding an area where they can afford homeownership and access to natural amenities are among the most important factors to them.
The flexibility of their work allowing them to get their job done from anywhere opens up many doors for opportunities. Without the need for people to be directly in the city to commute to their office buildings, it’s also expected that people will begin to move further out to the suburbs where land is more abundant and affordable.