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How Remote Work Impacts Homebuying Trends: A Guide for Real Estate Agents

04.23.2024 | Category: Article

In the wake of the global shift towards remote work, the landscape of homebuying has undergone a significant transformation. In fact, 35% of workers who have jobs that can be done remotely are now working from home full-time, according to the Pew Research Center

Real estate agents are witnessing firsthand how this trend is reshaping the preferences and priorities of homebuyers. With companies embracing remote work policies more than ever before, understanding these evolving dynamics is important for staying ahead in the competitive real estate market.

The shift towards remote work has become a driving force behind significant changes in homebuying trends. Real estate agents are witnessing a transformation in buyer preferences and priorities as remote work continues to redefine the concept of home. Here are five ways remote work is influencing the current landscape of homebuying:

Rise of Suburban and Rural Demand: One of the most widespread impacts of remote work on homebuying trends is the increasing demand for properties outside of major metropolitans. As individuals no longer need to commute to the office every day, they are seeking homes in suburban and rural areas that offer more space, privacy, and affordability. 

However, homes outside of city centers don’t automatically equate to more affordable homes. As a real estate agent, it’s your responsibility to educate prospective buyers that as they too seek to move outside to suburban and rural areas, demand may increase home prices, drive property taxes, and potentially affect access to amenities. 

Dual-Purpose Properties: The lines between primary residences and vacation homes are blurring as individuals seek out properties that can serve as both a place to live and work remotely. Real estate agents can highlight the potential of these properties as investment opportunities and remote work retreats. 

By staying informed about market trends and providing comprehensive guidance, agents can help buyers make informed decisions that align with their lifestyle and financial goals, beyond the single transaction of buying and selling a home.

Emphasis on Home Office Spaces: The need for dedicated workspaces within the home has become a must-have feature of any purchase. Homebuyers prioritize properties with well-designed office spaces or the potential for customization to accommodate remote work requirements.

Consider showing buyers homes with accessory dwelling unit (ADU) on the property or lots larger enough to accommodate adding a second property on the land. Buyers can choose to use the space for business needs or as a secondary income. Just be sure to advise the homebuyers to work with their financial advisor to ensure they take advantage of the opportunity within the ordinances set by their respective cities, counties or state. 

Demand for Versatile Amenities: Homes with versatile amenities such as outdoor living spaces, fitness areas, and recreational facilities are also in high demand. In addition, dedicated home office spaces with ample natural light and soundproofing are highly sought after. 

Buyers seek properties that offer a well-rounded lifestyle experience as they spend more time at home. Be sure to ask exactly what their profession is and what wish-list features could their home have to accommodate a personal touch to their remote-work abode. 

Tech Infrastructure Requirements: High-speed internet connectivity and smart home technology are also essential considerations, enabling seamless communication and efficient workflow. Real estate agents should prioritize properties with reliable internet access and highlight technological infrastructure as a selling point. 

If this utility is not easily accessible, be upfront with your buyer about the possibility of unreliable service and offer solutions that could accommodate their needs. 

Remote work continues to shape homebuying trends in profound ways, influencing preferences for location, design, amenities, sustainability, and technology infrastructure. Real estate agents who understand and adapt to these evolving dynamics will be well-equipped to meet the needs of today's remote workforce and thrive in the ever-changing real estate market.

Mutual of Omaha Mortgage offers tailored financing solutions designed to meet the unique requirements of remote workers and homebuyers seeking properties outside major metropolitan areas. By referring your clients to Mutual of Omaha Mortgage, you can ensure they receive expert guidance and personalized assistance throughout the homebuying process. 

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