Comment: It’s all about outside space for lockdown-scarred movers

Gardens are increasingly in demand. Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Gardens are increasingly in demand. Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Since lockdown our housing priorities have changed, and we’ve all become obsessed with having outside space.

According to a RICS’ latest residential market survey released last week, surveyors have noted a sharp increase in desire for homes with gardens.

More than four in five (81 per cent) said that, thanks to lockdown, they feel there will be an increased demand for properties with gardens or balconies over the next two years.

Three-quarters (74 per cent) are predicting a shift in demand for homes located near green spaces and 68 per cent say that properties with greater private and less communal space will become more sought-after.

It’s no surprise then that 78 per cent are predicting a fall in the appeal of tower blocks and 58 per cent feel properties located in highly urban areas will be deemed less appealing in the future.

Here in Herts, in a purely anecdotal study based solely on one small group (my immediate family), I’d say the surveyors speak sense.

I may have mentioned the very small rental house we currently call home - a recipe for stress when three kids, two cats and a dog are in the mix. I would have been in full-on nervous breakdown territory during those first couple of months of lockdown were it not for the decent-sized garden.

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Not being green-fingered in the slightest, I was once of the belief that space for table, chairs and trampoline was all that was required, but I now feel the bigger the better is best - bring on the ride-on mower, in fact.

I credit our garden, combined with the sunny weather, with me not losing the plot, and it still saves my sanity on a daily basis, even though I now have two kids back at school.

So here’s a big shout out to gardens, and massive respect to anyone - especially parents - who survived the last few months without one.