As the pandemic changes how people live, it has also triggered many to reconsider where they reside.
A poll, commissioned by Canadian digital moving concierge service MoveSnap, found that 10% of Canadian urbanites plan to move out to the burbs.
It also found that while 25% of respondents said they considered a move during the pandemic — whether it be in the city or outside of an urban area — only 19% have actually packed up and made the switch.
“COVID-19 seems to have encouraged a quarter of Canadians polled to re-evaluate their accommodations as the pandemic has forced many of us to work from home, and this is adding further pressures to an already intense real estate market,” MoveSnap CEO Marina Avisar said in a statement.
“But consequently, the fact that 75% do not plan to move as a result of the pandemic, and further, only 10% of Canadians plan to move away from urban areas, indicates that cities will remain appealing and necessary for a very large segment of Canadians,” Avisar said.
For Richmond Hill-based realtor Lian Kee Chua, of RE/MAX Hallmark Realty Ltd., interest among house-hunters in the surrounding Greater Toronto Area region has increased in the last three months.
However, he doesn’t see the real estate market as being more intense this fall as a result of pandemic-induced buyers.
Fall generally tends to be the second-busiest period for real estate agents after spring, said Chua. But due to the pandemic, this spring has seen a drop in real estate transactions, while the summer — which is usually a slower period — has seen an slight uptick.
A lower number of COVID-19 cases and the easing of lockdown restrictions over the summer months were key factors that contributed to the bucking of the real estate trend, said Chua.
“However, the situation is so fluid that it’s really hard to tell what will happen this fall as we’re talking about a second wave.”
While the MoveSnap survey doesn’t specify if those considering a move include renters, Chua said he’s had to deal with more clients who are tenants looking to take advantage of the glut of rental units to move once their lease is up.
Conducted on Sept. 22, the MoveSnap survey of 500 Canadian residents, ages 18-65, has a margin of error of 5%.