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When you conjure up the image of your dream home, what comes to mind first? Maybe it’s the ideal location or the perfect price. Well, according to a new analysis by Rightmove neither of these items come top of the bill for a new generation of buyers.
Analysing the most popular keywords used by would-be homeowners on the leading property website, they found that home hunters prized one thing above all else when searching out their new abode.
Yes, it’s a garage. While the lure of guaranteed off-street parking is enough to get buyers excited about having a garage, the fact that this space can also double us as a storage area and even be converted into an extra living space ensures it stays on the sought after list.
Coming in second was an annexe. This bonus space has so many versatile uses, from an occasional holiday let to a place you can rent to would-be first-time buyers to lay their heads while they’re saving for that all important deposit.
To elaborate further on the appeal of annexes, Rightmove asked Richard Crawley, director at stamp duty taxation specialists SDR, for his thoughts. ‘It’s a financially viable option in the current market,’ he says. ‘Many people also find it far more suitable to look after a family member than to pay for them to stay in a care home, which is often very expensive. An annexe is a kind of in between space, they’re very versatile, which makes them attractive.’
‘They also appeal to investors as you have two rentable properties,’ Richard adds. ‘Annexes come in all shapes and sizes – some are detached cottages, some are semi-detached, some are ground floor apartments. Some are just separate, lockable rooms. There is definitely a financial benefit as they could give a seller up to 25 per cent extra in resale value. There could also be some stamp duty relief when buying a property with a qualifying annexe too.’
The third spot on the list was taken by the search term acre, presumably typed in either by those who are in search of the rural idle or property developers and buy-to-let landlords looking to get the most for their money.
The top-ten ranking in full consists of these popular search terms:
Which item on the top ten is most important to you when looking for a home?