The pandemic has caused people to redefine the concept of home and what they think is essential when they buy a property. Several months of lockdown has made them realise that they need to look beyond the base points of location, square feet and appreciation value when they invest in a home.
We are slowly moving towards a post-pandemic world and therefore a more aware home buyer whose check- list has expanded to include the concept of holistic living. We perceive that what home buyers will primarily be looking for includes additional space which is multi-functional, community living, amenities, on-site management facilities and safety and security.
Since the lockdown literally had people feeling as though they were in a state of house arrest, the concept of ‘space’ has gained new importance for home buyers. There are two aspects to the space they seek – one is the space within the home and the other is common garden and recreational areas within the project. We are seeing more people opting for homes with an additional spare room.
With the ‘work from home’ concept here to stay, home buyers are understanding the importance of having a space where they can work uninterrupted by the domestic routine. Moreover, space is now being envisioned in a multi-functional manner – doubling up as entertainment centre, workout and fitness corner as well as study area, as the need may be. This requirement for personal space has also led home buyers to look at projects that offer balconies or large decks that allow them the pleasure of indulging in a bit of home gardening or a place to relax with an amazing view.
There is an instinctive need within us to commune with nature. Open landscaped gardens, podium level facilities for recreation, exercise or just calm contemplation further fulfil the need for space that people have rediscovered a pandemic riddled world.
Along with that, there are the safety and security aspects that gated projects assure buyers of. With facility management teams in place, people realise that having the nitty-gritties of daily aspects of society and ground management being taken care of, presents a huge advantage. Sanitisation of all public areas within a project is handled on a regular basis, as are assured delivery of essential services as well as assistance to the elderly or the ailing. We are finding that this definitely rates high on the priority list of home buyers. A project that has been planned with retail space and access to essentials is now the preferred choice.
Reducing contact and touch points is fast becoming an essential feature and thus you will find projects where elevators are operated by the swipe of a palm; facility management teams ensure contactless delivery at homes and even guests get security clearances via QR codes.
Never has the idea of community been more strongly driven home. The pandemic was a time when people rallied together and ‘gated community’ and ‘township’ projects have gained precedence for home buyers precisely because no man is an island and being social creatures, we crave the support and company of other like-minded individuals.
Developers are also working towards designing homes and projects which present home buyers with amenities and facilities that, while fostering a sense of community , also take care of the ‘new normal’ imposed by the pandemic. Technology is making rapid strides and incorporating new innovations in projects is a hallmark of a progressive developer. Provisions for the new tech world, such as underground fibre optic cables that support high speed internet is another touch point for home buyers as work, education, entertainment and gaming are all dependent on it.
OC-ready homes are much in demand today and we are seeing a lot of traction in those projects which are ‘ready to move in’. We perceive that there will be a paradigm shift in both the requirements and the demographic of home buyers once we are in the post-pandemic era. They will now seek a safe and secure haven, a ‘village’ where families are nurtured, a space that allows every individual to thrive and pursue their interests, a place that conforms with the ‘new normal’ and still gives a sense of freedom – a Home!