3 Features Home Buyers Want Now That They Are Working From Home
For years, many people have had a dream of ditching the office and working from home. With COVID-19 making in-office work potentially hazardous, many of these people suddenly find their dreams coming true. Thanks to this monumental shift in work habits, there are already new trends in the features buyers want to see when they buy a new home. Although the pandemic won't be around forever, these new feature trends may be around for some time to come.
1. A Quiet Space
Large homes are valued now more than ever because they provide many isolated spaces that can be kept mostly quiet. Having a quiet area to work is valuable for a number of reasons, not the least of which is simply being able to concentrate while everyone else in the home is living their life. Quiet and solitude are also important when an individual is on a video conference call since you don't want every to hear your family's personal conversations or have a child unexpectedly make an appearance in the background.
For people who do phone-based work, a quiet space is especially crucial, as customers who are calling-in still expect the same calling environment as before. If they hear crying babies or clanging dishes in the background, they'll know that the person they're talking to is working from home. This could lower the customer's opinion of the company, even in this time when many people are working in extreme and unusual circumstances.
Quiet spaces can be provided in one of two ways. The easiest way, obviously, is simply to have a large house with an office on one end and the living space on the other. The physical separation between these two spaces provides enough distance for the sound to fade by the time it reaches the office. In a smaller home, though, good sound isolation can still be achieved by using extra insulation in the walls of the home office. Add a solid wood door to the mix, and you end up with a nice, quiet space.
2. A Robust Network
For most people, a home network was used for little more than entertainment prior to the pandemic. Now that more people are working from home, though, a robust home network is their crucial lifeline to the outside world.
Instead of a simple wireless network, people want to see wired connections that allow them to connect IP phones and other office equipment. Plus, wired connections offer a more reliable connection for critical business calls that can't be interrupted.
These needs are magnified when you consider that other family members are home more often, as well, meaning they're watching more movies, starting more video chats, playing more video games, and doing online schooling. When you combine these demands, it calls for serious networking infrastructure that many homes overlooked prior to the pandemic.
Depending on the size of the home, adding a home network to an existing home may be fairly involved. The most time-consuming part is running the ethernet cables to the various rooms in the home. The proper equipment will also be needed so that there is enough headroom to provide adequate bandwidth for an entire family's needs.
3. Enhanced Lighting
Being at home can get old, fast, especially when you're working there. That's why more people are seeking-out enhanced lighting when they're looking at homes. Adequate lighting is crucial to help reduce eye strain and help prevent depression.
So far, most of the work-from-home change has happened in warm and cheery summer months. As the pandemic stretches into the cold and gray winter months, though, people will need all the light they can get to avoid seasonal affective disorder.
Lighting in a home comes in two forms. The first form is artificial lighting. Improving this lighting involves adding more fixtures in certain rooms throughout the home, especially rooms where people spend long periods of time, such as a home office. The color temperature of the lighting is also important.
While lights with a cooler color temperature tend to provide more light, lights with a warmer color temperature tend to be more relaxing and help to reduce eye strain. Adaptive lighting that changes throughout the day is also a feature that people are seeking, as this can help them sleep better at night, especially as the days get shorter.
The other type of lighting in a home is natural lighting. This means that homes with large and abundant windows are highly desirable among buyers currently. While windows can be added to a home, homes that were designed with natural lighting in mind definitely have a leg-up in this category. Another desirable feature to add natural light is skylights. Skylights are nice because they are easier to add to existing homes and they can be installed in interior rooms that have no exterior walls.