Posted in April 2021
The three David Andrew offices in Archway, Stroud Green and Highbury offer their own perspectives on how the Covid-19 National lockdown has changed many renters requirements and how these adjustments have affected the local North London lettings market:-
David Andrew: Archway
"Recently, we have found the requirements of our average renter has now changed, with the ability to work remotely which has often been frowned upon within the industry, is now more common with prospective tenants seeking property for the long-term, which meets their new criteria.
"A sensible work-life balance is the recurring theme of all of our recent conversations. For example, in Archway and the local surrounding areas, a second room for couples is increasingly being desired, outdoor space has never been so important and most of our tenants are flexible on the postcodes of where they would consider living. Some Zone 1 tenants are now considering cost-effective rental options and will be prepared to view a property in Zone 2 if it meets their search criteria.
"As the vaccine gets rolled out across all age demographics, we should start to return to a sense of normality, with the smaller non-essential business returning to their place of work, restaurants re-opening and universities physically reopening. We have confidence the criteria will again change and are bullish on the long-term rental values within London".
David Andrew: Stroud Green
David Andrew Lettings Manager - Haiden Roeger states: "In the Stroud Green area, after a year of having to work from home because of Covid-19, we have noticed a higher demand for properties which offer outside space such as private gardens or a balcony. The average days on the market for properties of this calibre have been seven or less; mainly accommodating professional couples working from home.
“We have also observed that our tenants have been able to upsize from one-bedroom to two-bedroom properties with a friend or relative to accompany them in these times, further to improve their mental health wellbeing. At David Andrew we believe that good mental health is very important and agree that this can be achieved by having an outdoor space, close proximity to parks for long walks and daily exercise, or more living space to share with a friend."
Haiden spoke to Jasmine, the Treasurer and Volunteer from the Sunnyside Community Gardens, who also touched on the importance of outdoor space being linked with good mental health, as more and more people have been stopping by to meditate in the local gardens.
"We have noticed far more people using our gardens since the start of Covid-19. Some occupiers in the area don’t have a private garden and so having access to a natural outdoor space that is safe – has been important to them. For families with young children this has been a place for them to burn off energy, play and discover exciting wildlife on the doorstep. Locals working from home have had more daylight and time to spend volunteering in the gardens (social distance protocols in place) as opposed to the commute into Central London. The garden is maintained by volunteers and their comment is that their gardens have looked the best this year. During last summer, families would litter pick in the local area most afternoons. Meditation – a lot of people meditated in their gardens.”
Haiden concluded, “Whilst Covid-19 has had many negative impacts, we have seen the positive light shine through. Tenants see the importance of making their living space theirs to enjoy and harness for their mental wellbeing, by having access to communal open green spaces, a relaxing garden/terrace or balcony. The community organisations have seen more people have time to volunteer and give back. I feel these are attributes to our social economy and welfare.”
David Andrew: Highbury
David Andrew Lettings Manager - Philip Chuku has made the following observations on the local Highbury lettings market: "Since the outbreak of Covid-19, Highbury has experienced a surge of properties on the lettings market over this past year and we have seen first-hand how the priorities and requirements of our clients have changed as a direct result of the pandemic and lockdown restrictions.
"What has been the reason for the increase in demand for property and rental accommodation? It appears that many more people are working from home and therefore, require extra space overall in their living accommodation, combined with sharers serving notice to move back home with family (during lockdown ) or to move in with partners. This has rendered some of the larger properties which need updating, harder to let, given renters views on public sharing at present. Overall, we have found that people are really looking for ‘ value for money ‘ vs quality and location.
"We have also observed a notable increase in demand for outside and internal living space, as a result of lifestyle changes and in peoples work/financial situations. Since March 2020 when the lockdown restrictions were first imposed, we have seen an approximate increase of 40% to the stock levels in N5 and surrounding locations, however, prices have dropped by 10%-20% in some cases.
"Highbury has served as an extremely desirable place to live, because of its abundance of local amenities (including excellent transport links and a great selection of bars and restaurants), but also because of its close proximity to green spaces and beautiful parks.
"During this shift in peoples requirements as a direct result of Covid-19, the local area of Highbury has been able to deliver on a number of fronts and although we have seen a reduction in prices, our renters requirements for good quality property, outdoor space and larger internal space still prevail, regardless of the recent conditions.
"This is therefore, probably the perfect time for landlords to undertake any decorating/maintenance work to improve the condition of their properties and to maximise the markets new requirements and needs.
At David Andrew, we will continue to adapt and embrace and adapt where necessary as and when the market conditions change".
With three local offices we have unrivalled market knowledge. A senior member of the David Andrew team will come to your property to provide an accurate sales valuation or rental valuation and offer comparable properties we have sold in order to justify our valuation and to show how we can achieve you the best possible price.