Apartments and flats are springing up all over the UK, but aren’t necessarily generating sales. According to research aggregated by The Guardian, 50% of new London flats don’t sell despite the intensity of the property market. The story is echoed in Liverpool, Manchester, and Birmingham, according to local press. With a multitude of unsold flats and a fluctuating property market, it can be difficult to place your finger on just what comprises ‘quality’.
The process of finding a perfect apartment is just the start. Even with a budget, search area, estate agent and good timing, there is still the factor of apartment living and your own taste. By exploring your tastes in order to establish your priorities, you’ll have a concrete view of what your apartment should give you.
Exploring the design of your home
Your home is the place you spend the majority of your life. Between your bed and your workplace, you will need somewhere that is familiar. Finding a truly great apartment that you can relax within means finding somewhere with the intrinsic qualities that will allow you to turn into a home. Finding an apartment that has a unique interior design scheme will be great for long-term comfort and a sense of style key to you. That being said, before any other consideration comes into play, you need to nail down the necessities of your apartment. This can be more difficult than it sounds – according to research reported by the Telegraph, only 7% of UK housing is accessible to wheelchair users, for example.
For those who work at home, you further need to consider your own ability to separate your work space with your living space. If you use the full freedom of the house, you may find it less relaxing when you put the laptop down for the day and could find a spare room better for your productivity and happiness.
Understanding your neighbourhood
Apartments spring up in various locations; from trendy inner-city neighbourhoods to less affluent suburban areas. The area you live in can be absolutely key to your enjoyment of your apartment; whether that’s because of crime rates, or a lack of an accessible community for your interests. Scout the neighbourhood before buying, and do your research online – there are plenty of excellent resources to be found. Using modern technology, you can even monitor a neighbourhood from afar. Event planning and attendance apps can be set to hone in on the postcode of the apartment you’ve identified and give you updates on events going on there.
Learn the value of the market and move around
The London property market is famously inflated, given the competition for space in the inner city boroughs. However, that’s not the case across all of the United Kingdom and, in fact, property prices fell 0.3% in February, according to the most recently available statistics from Nationwide building society. Wherever you live, learn the value of the local market from researching different postcodes and housing. With low-interest rates, increasing homebuilding, reduced preferential treatment for landlords and slashed stamp duty, it is a buyers market – don’t lose out. If in doubt, and especially where you have transferable skills – or work from home – don’t be scared to move.
Purchasing a new apartment is a daunting experience, and the financial and logistical side will often gobble up your attention. However, this can come at the expense of paying attention to the nuanced details of your identified property. Learn what makes you tick, keep that at the forefront of your mind, and enjoy the hunt.