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How Covid-19 Is Changing Real Estate


It's a mainstay of home improvement shows like Good Bones and Property Brothers, but some experts say the whole "open concept" concept might go the way of the sunken living room, thanks to COVID-19.

The open floor plans are characterized by knocking down walls, to give an open flow to a home, generally from front to back door. However, some realtors are seeing some changes in what new homeowners want, according to an article in the Columbus Dispatch.

"Our homes have become a gym, a workplace, a school, a restaurant, a playground during the coronavirus pandemic," Amanda Pendleton, of real estate site Zillow, tells the publication. "We think open floor plans...could be falling out of favor. Homebuyers might be looking for more private spaces, home offices, mud rooms to keep the dirt out, sanitary updates to bathrooms [like] touchless faucets, [and] self-cleaning toilets."

Luxury home developer Cindy Stumpo tells ABC Audio that she's seen some post-pandemic changes, too. In Boston, where her company is based, clients have been leaving condos in the city and buying bigger single-family homes in the suburbs.

Stumpo explains that while some are first-time home owners investing in a luxury single-family residence, others are adding a fitness center, remote office space, and outdoor pool to their renovation wish lists.

Similar shifts are happening in other major cities as well.

"Stuck in their homes with limited access to outdoor amenities because of the coronavirus quarantine, people now want one thing most of all: room to move," she explains. "Buyers want more space and more comforts within their own house."

These home buyers are craving amenities they might have gone elsewhere for in the past.

The goal is a safer environment in the wake of a new pandemic, or COVID-19 having a second wave.

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