Published: 08/09/2020Outside space has always been desirable in Leeds, but in this age of lockdowns, it's become more of a necessity. For many, the priority order when considering a new home (location, price, size, amenities, outside space) has changed fundamentally. It’s more important than ever to remember that gardens, balconies and terraces aren't just eye candy; they now underpin a property’s saleability.
In Leeds, there are approximately 36,500 people living across 3,300 hectares of land. This means that the population density is 11 people per hectare. To put that in the national context, it scores 4/5, five being the most densely populated areas. We can, therefore, classify our area as suburban, which means residents' will have very limited choices when it comes to outside space.
Buyers' attitudes towards and appetite for outside space often comes down to the area where the property is located. As the chart above shows, the most common type of property in Leeds is a semi. This means that a significant number of homebuyers will expect a reasonably sized garden with room for a couple of flower beds.
For out-of-town house buyers used to decent sized gardens, more is definitely more. But for flat buyers, and people who live in more built-up areas the effect is more marked. Those trying to sell flats without balconies have really struggled, as have landlords trying to find tenants for them. We know stories of people who extended into their gardens to increase the internal floor area who are really struggling to find a buyer who will agree on a price which allows them to recoup the investment.
However, there is some light at the end of the tunnel for anyone stuck in this position. Firstly, even just being near a park or open space is a big plus, space doesn't necessarily have to be part of the property. Secondly, there's always a chance that when normality returns, it slips down the priority list of renters and buyers. One hopes that housebuilders, who are responsible for the supply of properties into the market, will have learned an important lesson. When it comes to all types of property, flats and houses alike, outside space is now key to maintaining sales values.
The demand for open space in Leeds is essentially down to the density of housing in the area. Outside space will now powerfully differentiate your property from others on the market, but quality and quantity both have parts to play. If you'd like to know how to make the most of what you've got, please pop into our office so we can give you the inside track.
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