Research by Wales-based FTSE-250 housebuilder, Redrow shows Britain’s future housing preferences include private driveways, low-density design and detached homes, with the Welsh coming out as enjoying the most regular interaction with their neighbours.
To fulfil its constant drive to “create a better way to live” – particularly in the post-pandemic world – Redrow is closely monitoring consumer trends around what people want from their home and community. An extensive independent online survey which polled over 2,000 British adults was conducted via YouGov to provide Redrow with insight into consumer home design and architecture preferences, neighbour relations, and aspirations for their local areas.
Architecture and housing design
The research concludes that spacious living arrangements that offer functionality to adapt, spread out and create dedicated spaces for working, play and living are now at the forefront of Brits’ minds, including here in Wales.
When asked to choose a new build home that they would aspire to live in most, the overwhelming majority of Welsh consumers (79%) would like to live in a two-storey detached home, with a slight preference for a more contemporary over period style.
Welsh respondents valued a private garden the most out of the three nations’ respondents at 97%, while 94% said they would also choose to live in a home with a private driveway or garage.
Having the flexibility to create a dedicated home-working space was also most important to the Welsh respondents (82%) and, while over half (54%) of Welsh respondents said it would be beneficial to have enough space in their home to exercise or create a home gym, they were the least keen of the three nations.
Kevin Parker, Group Master Planning Director at Redrow, comments:
“With most people spending more time in their homes than ever before over the last 12 months, our personal living situations and housing needs have been put under the microscope.
“Our findings reveal that consumer aspirations lean strongly toward detached two-storey homes with a larger footprint which enable areas to be carved out in the home for different uses, whether that’s sitting around the table for a family meal, home working in a dedicated area, or taking online exercise classes.”
Local surroundings and amenities
A desire to be near green, open spaces, also rings true within the research, with 95% of UK respondents (98% in Wales) stating that they would find being near to open spaces beneficial in any future home move.
Attractive streets are important to Welsh consumers too, with 95% stating that a street comprising homes of the same style but with their own individual character would be their preference over homes that were the same build.
When it comes to the subject of neighbourly relations, 70% of respondents believe it is important to personally know their neighbours.
While half (50%) are now interacting with their neighbours in a positive manner on a weekly basis, respondents in Wales stood out as having the highest proportion of positive engagements with neighbours at 27%, usually in the front garden or on the street. This compared to the English average of 16% and 19% in Scotland.
Jane Carpenter, Planning Director in South Wales, said:
“Understanding our customers is integral to the design of our homes and communities, and the pandemic has brought our placemaking principles into sharper relief. People clearly want space to work and play as well as live at home, and recognise now more than ever the value of the outdoors to our health and wellbeing. That includes having their own gardens and those important community spaces, which we design into all our developments to ensure people naturally meet each other day-to-day and cohesive communities are created.
“And it’s no surprise to any of us living in Wales that people here really enjoy catching up with their neighbours on a regular basis – as a nation, community is really important to us.”