Strutt & Parker’s new Housing Futures report identifies five shifts in the market 150415

Q2 2015

Strutt & Parker’s latest Housing Futures survey has identified five key shifts in the UK’s housing market.

Strutt & Parker’s latest Housing Futures survey has identified five key shifts in the UK’s housing market.

By collating answers from 2,000 respondents from across the UK, the results give a valuable insight into the almost invisible ‘creeping’ trends affecting the country’s property industry today:

• Living alone – This is becoming more common. Of the 43% of respondents who stated they were currently single and planning to move in the next five years, 75% anticipated staying in a single-person household.

• Long-term renters – Generation Y (those born between 1978 and 1995) are living in private rental for longer. Of those aged 18-29, 45% said that they would consider living in a professionally managed private rental unit.

• Impact of technology – Future housing types and location decisions are being altered by access to technology. Nearly 36% of the respondents who were intending to move listed broadband connectivity as important or very important in their motivations for moving, and nearly 20% listed mobile coverage.

• The changing family – Alternative family structures are becoming more common, with 15% of our respondents who intend to move anticipating living as ‘The Waltons’ (multiple generations under one roof), compared with 10% in our previous survey.

• Retaining housing equity – While one might expect to see a high percentage of baby boomers selling property to raise capital for pensions and their children’s housing needs, we found only 9% of those aged 40-59, and 0.4% of those aged 60 or older, rated financial support for children/relatives as important or very important when asked about motivations for moving, and 8% and 16% respectively for pension support/top-up.

Stephanie McMahon, Head of Research at Strutt & Parker, comments: “Our creeping trends identify that single occupied households and alternative family households are growing, the younger generation is more open to the idea of renting and those moving into retirement are seeking more interactive environments. The impact of these trends inevitably means that in the future the homes we plan, design, build and live in must be different.

“Lifestyle change remained the dominant motivation for moving, but in light of pension challenges and parents seeking to help their children onto the housing ladder, we were surprised to see that so few respondents ranked release of equity, pension top up and financial support for relatives as their reasons for moving home.”

The themes developed in Strutt & Parker’s original Housing Futures report released in 2014 – emerging demographic groups and housing solutions to suit these new tribes - remain at the heart of this year’s research.

Strutt & Parker asked its balanced 2,000 person sample whether they thought they were a GloMad (global nomads who are generally young people who travel for employment) or a Tumbleweeder (those who occupy homes that are too large for their needs). The survey also asked whether they would perhaps like to live in a Micro Mansion (dedicated tiny living spaces of 100-250 sq ft) or a Yo-Yo House (houses on flexible footings which can grow and contract).

Over half of those surveyed identified with being a My-Sizer - people who are moving home so that they can better suit their evolving needs, both in terms of space and finances. 37.9% of respondents said they would consider living in a ‘Platinum Place’- a mixed community that is part of the town and suitable for active retirees.

Over a fifth of respondents identified with being a MECo – those who place their personal health and wellbeing at a premium, and want a home that reflects this. The ‘HEAL house’ solution – or healthy living space’ was also popular with over half of respondents saying they would like to live in the kind of house with the desire to interact with the outdoors.

The survey sample of 2,000 respondents is a combination of Strutt & Parker registered buyers, sellers, tenants and lettings applicants from the past three years, and a balanced general UK population sample conducted by OnePoll. The respondents came from across the UK with a balanced gender split.

To download the full report, ‘Housing Futures: Key trends shaping the residential market’, click here.