The reopening of schools in March coincided with a surge in house hunting. Find out where buyer interest has soared the most – and discover how sought-after your home could be.

uyer interest in homes on the market has soared by 25% in the two months alone since schools reopened in March.

And our latest research reveals where buyer demand has surged the most in Great Britain as lockdown restrictions ease.

Stockport, Scarborough and Cambridge all top the rankings when it comes to rising demand – a useful gauge of buyers that are active in the housing market.

It comes as housing market momentum saw sales agreed on one in every 50 homes sold between 1 January and 15 April, up from one in every 100 homes a year earlier.

Caught your eye? Find out how sought-after your home could be with our handy map.

One and two-bedroom flats

First-time buyers and empty-nesters appear to be driving demand for one bedroom and two-bedroom flats.

The biggest rise in interest for homes of this size has been seen in Stockport and Pembrokeshire, where demand has jumped by 164% and 122% respectively since early March.

Flats in these locations, as well as other popular areas which have seen a spike in interest such as East Devon and the New Forest, offer suburban and urban living at a relatively low cost.

A number of locations within London’s commuter belt, including Windsor and Maidenhead, Brentwood and Three Rivers, have also seen a strong increase in demand for one and two-bedroom flats.

With average prices of below £250,000 for flats, these locations are likely to appeal to first-time buyers working in the capital.

Two and three-bedroom homes

Two and three-bedroom properties in areas where prices are below their regional average have seen the largest increase in interest from potential buyers.

While homes of this size remain in strong demand across Great Britain, the seaside resort of Scarborough has seen interest from potential buyers skyrocket 142%.

Although house prices in Scarborough are above the regional average, our data shows that they tend to be larger than in other parts of Yorkshire, meaning buyers get more bang for their buck.

Demand for two and three-bedroom homes in picturesque Weymouth and Portland, on the Jurassic Coast in the south west, where average homes cost £235,000, 15% below the regional average, has jumped 115%.

Meanwhile demand has soared by 111% and 108% respectively in Forest Heath in Suffolk and Falkirk in Scotland, both areas where prices are well below the regional average. Falkirk is consistently one of the fastest-moving property markets in Great Britain.


Four and five-bedroom homes

Demand for four and five-bedroom homes is being driven by the ongoing search for space, with buyer interest spiking in rural or coastal areas.

Boasting easy access to London and a range of Ofsted-rated Outstanding schools, Cambridge led the way with demand soaring by 182%.

Scenic areas in the south east, such as Hastings, which saw a 92% rise in demand, and Horsham and Surrey Heath, which both recorded a 79% increase, also feature strongly.

What’s buyer appetite like in London?

In London, Hounslow topped the list when it comes to demand for one and two-bedroom flats, with buyer appetite climbing by 41%. It’s closely followed by Sutton, Enfield and Greenwich, which all posted a 39% increase.

Buyer demand for two and three-bedroom houses was highest in Harrow at 94%, followed by Bexley at 82% and Merton at 63%, all areas that have been popular with families in recent years.

Meanwhile, Sutton, Richmond upon Thames, and Kensington and Chelsea saw the biggest jump in interest for four and five-bedroom homes, with demand up by 50% or more.

The reopening of schools in early March was a key moment for the housing market, alongside the extension of the stamp duty holiday until the end of September.

But the surge in buyer demand has been fuelled by other factors too.

The pandemic has driven a ‘search for space’, with many people carrying out a once-in-a-lifetime reassessment of their homes and lifestyles in the wake of multiple lockdowns.

More recently, the launch of the government’s 95% mortgage guarantee scheme has led to more first-time buyers entering the housing market.

However, the level of homes on the market remains tight, with the total number of homes listed for sale so far this year 19% lower than average levels recorded in 2020.

What could all this mean for you?

If you live in one of these in-demand areas, it could be a good time to sell.

Check out My Home for an estimate of how much your property may be worth, to give you an idea of what your budget could be for your next home.

Speak with us to get an expert market valuation and guidance on how to best navigate this busy housing market.