HAVING a superfast broadband connection or good mobile coverage is equal to a good view when it comes to what buyers look for in a prime property, according to international real estate firm Knight Frank LLP’s Buyer Survey.

The Buyer Survey, published in Knight Frank’s inaugural Winter 2016 Country Review, tracks the views of over 500 buyers active in the prime market in the UK.

The survey results showed that some 61.4% of respondents said good Internet connectivity and phone signal were important to them when moving house.

This compares to 60.8% who said the same about a good view.

“In an age of Wi-Fi, tablets and streaming, it is unsurprising that fast and reliable Internet access is seen as a necessity among home movers.

“Technology improvements, including fast, reliable Internet, have meant that working from home is a viable option for many, potentially cutting down on both commuting time and costs. This is likely to be particularly relevant for buyers in more rural property markets,” said Knight Frank Research associate Oliver Knight.

Besides good connectivity, privacy and security (67%) and having a garden or access to land (67%) were still considered the most important attributes of a new home cited by the respondents of the survey.

The survey also revealed that quality of life (43%) is the primary motivating factors for moving, followed by upsizing (29%), downsizing (26%), more land or a bigger garden (23%), long-term capital growth (14%), and others.

“London buyers were much more likely to cite long-term capital growth as a motivation for buying (23%) compared with those elsewhere in the UK (10%), perhaps reflective of the strong growth seen in the capital following the financial crisis,” said the report.

On stamp duty, some 41% of prime buyers have reduced their budget and a further 14% plan to stay in their next property longer as a result of changes to the stamp duty in December 2014 and more recently, April 2016.

On preferred locations, some 30% of respondents said the preferred location of their next home was in a city. The majority (35%) however would like to move to a village while only 19% prefer a countryside location.

Meanwhile, the report also reviewed the performance of the prime country market across 2016 where price growth currently stands at 0.5% over the year to September 2016, down from a peak of 5.2% in mid-2014.

“While this figure suggests that the market has been relatively subdued, the slowdown in price growth is just a reflection of a market adjusting to a series of tax changes and, to a lesser extent, economic uncertainty resulting from the recent vote to leave the European Union.

“The wholesale reforms to stamp duty announced in December 2014, and the subsequent introduction of a 3% surcharge for individuals purchasing additional properties, have succeeded in making buyers more price sensitive, and this has been factored in to asking prices and offers, something which is confirmed by the results of our exclusive buyer survey,” said the consultancy.

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Source : By Lum Ka Kay / TheEdgeProperty.com | November 27, 2016 7:45 AM MYT

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