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Home Buyer Priorities Before & After Lockdown

A recent look at buyers’ housing preferences and priorities pre and mid lockdowns can be summed up with this: there are a wave of buyers looking to trade up, but no one wants to compromise.

The New Normal

More time at home means a shift in priorities. Since the pandemic began, prospective buyers — which includes many who are looking to trade out of their no longer functional work and home spaces — have significantly changed their search parameters. The quarantine experience has more people searching for rooms, functional floor plans, and almost as importantly, outside space. 

Here are the stats nationwide. In San Francisco, buyers mid-lockdown are looking for more space and are willing to pay more for it. In June of this year, there were 31 contracts signed on single-family San Francisco homes asking $3 million or more, compared with 21 in June of 2019.  

The median sales price in the San Francisco is $1.38 million, and 29% of searches in the city after lockdown are for homes above that price point. Before lockdown, just 11% of searches were for homes above the median price.

The Takeaway

Prior to the pandemic, house hunters were focused on amenities such as granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, and hardwood flooring. These were some of the most popular search terms a year ago.

Fast forward to today, and there are buyers out there, but they’re being more selective than ever. Listings lacking outside space, large-volume rooms where there may be no privacy, and lack of parking are being passed over in favor of better floor designs, more square footage and outdoor spaces. If that sounds right to you, and you need an agent to help you navigate the real estate market in San Francisco, I’m happy to help.

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