Home Property Downsizers drive high demand for single-storey living

Downsizers drive high demand for single-storey living

11th Jun 24 9:20 am

The latest research by leading residential park bungalow provider, Regency Living, has revealed that while bungalows account for just one in 10 homes currently listed for sale, buyer demand for bungalow living is high, with 42% of all homes listed for sale already having found a buyer.

Household energy bills continue to pose a problem

Inflation may have eased in recent months, but households across the nation are still struggling with the high cost of living.

In fact, a recent study from the Office for National Statistics found that 41% of adults are struggling to pay their energy bills. This is hardly surprising, given that the annual cost of gas and electricity sits at just over £2,000 for the average three-bed home, climbing to over £2,800 for a five-bed property.

Additional data from the Office for National Statistics shows that it’s those aged 60+ who are most likely to struggle as they have the lowest income of all those aged 30 or over.

More homeowners downsizing

With a myriad of additional running costs to consider on top of gas and electricity, it’s no wonder that many homeowners are opting to downsize their homes in order to cut back on costs. A recent study by Hamptons found that 41% of homemovers downsized in 2023, up from 32% the previous year and the highest level since 2016.

For those in later life, a bungalow purchase provides the ideal property to downsize to, not only helping them to cut back considerably on running costs, but also providing the additional benefits of single-storey living.

High demand for bungalow living

The latest figures from Regency Living show that bungalows are in high demand in the current market, with 42% of all bungalows currently listed for sale across England having already been snapped up by buyers*.

London is home to the highest level of bungalow buyer demand, with 46% of all bungalows listed for sale across the capital having already found a buyer.

The North East ranks second where current demand is at 45%, while 43% of all bungalows have been bought across the South East, North West, West Midlands and East of England.

Lack of bungalow supply

However, while bungalows may be in high demand, prospective buyers may struggle to find one due to a lack of available stock. The figures from Regency Living show that bungalows account for just one in 10 homes currently listed for sale across England.

In London, bungalows account for just 2% of current for sale stock, with the West Midlands (8%), North East (9%) and North West (9%) also home to some of the lowest availability.

For the best chance of a bungalow purchase, homebuyers should look to the East Midlands and East of England, where 14% of all homes currently listed for sale are bungalows.

Availability across the South West (13%) and Yorkshire (12%) also comes in higher than the national average.

Regency Living spokesperson said, “We’ve seen a resurgence in the popularity of bungalow living in recent years and this has come largely due to the increased cost of living facing many households.

For those in their later years, in particular, the decision to downsize to a bungalow from a larger home is a no-brainer given the cost saving associated with such a move, as well as the additional benefits that come from single-storey living in later life.

That said, bungalow stock availability is low and market turnover is far less frequent due to the fact that many bungalow homebuyers don’t tend to move on following their initial purchase.

Within the park bungalow sector we’re doing a great job of providing the homes required to meet current demand, providing single-storey accommodation to older homebuyers who don’t want to compromise on the quality of living offered by modern homes.

However, it’s fair to say that a greater focus on the delivery of single-storey housing stock could help free up larger homes for those looking to climb up the ladder, addressing the wider issue of the housing crisis in the process.”

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