In a report released Monday, online property marketplace Lamudi said it saw a “switch” in property hunters’ preferences from financial districts to non-CBD properties during the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in Luzon. Lack of public transportation during the lockdown period is to blame.
MANILA, Philippines — Property seekers have recently avoided spaces in central business districts (CBD) as movement restrictions meant to arrest coronavirus spread and contagion fears prompted buyers to consider locations closer to their present homes when making decisions.
In a report released Monday, Lamudi, an online property marketplace, said it saw a “switch” in locational preferences of property hunters from financial districts to non-CBD properties during the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in Luzon. The lack of public transportation during the lockdown period is to blame.
“Since public transportation has been suspended from March to May and is on limited operations, property seekers may have looked for residential properties closer to their workplaces, especially those who have been deemed as essential workers and are at higher risk to the virus,” Lamudi said.
“This move can also keep their loved ones safe from the virus, especially if there are family members that are more susceptible to COVID-19 (coronavirus disease-2019),” it added.
The shift may prove to be temporary— properties located in CBD turned out “to be popular” as of the first half— but a recent spike in infections, following economic reopening, can very well prompt a rethink on property buying considerations, including proximity to existing homes.
“With this, the second half of 2020 may show new trends in real estate demand and preferences from property seekers who have to adapt to the rules set in place during changing community quarantines on a more long-term basis,” Lamudi said.
The outlook adds to earlier reports that demonstrate the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the booming real estate sector. While Lamudi’s report also showed a “drastic decrease” in condominium and apartment website leads in the first half, stand-alone houses gained as employers shifted to work-from-home arrangements.
For buyers who remained in CBD, amenities such as a strong internet connection was a strong consideration. From January to June, 26% of total seekers on Lamudi were looking for properties to buy or rent in Quezon City, where three CBDs are located.
Elsewhere, property hunters also viewed spaces that are up for sale or rent in Makati (12%), Pasig (10%) and Taguig (9%) where Bonifacio Global City is located.
Among amenities sought by buyers or renters, a swimming pool was the top consideration for 11% of property hunters. This was followed by air-conditioning provisions at 9%, Wi-Fi (8%), gym (8%), garage (8%) and balcony (6%), among others.
“Since the ECQ was implemented during the summer months, properties with either a common swimming pool or have air conditioning were popular,” Lamudi said.
“Meanwhile, having a stable internet connection has also become a necessity during these times as virtual events and work-from-home setups are the new normal during the community quarantine,” it added.
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