COVID-19 and the impact of restrictions on daily lives have led to a shift in the housing market, with new priorities for buyers.

Jonathan Dawson, of York's EweMove, said the past year had brought challenges and change, but there was now optimism.

"Our needs have definitely changed, with more space needed indoors, outside space more desirable than ever and less reliance on living within a commutable distance to the office."

He said these changing needs, coupled with the further extension to the stamp duty holiday and renewed confidence in the lending market, gave him optimism for the future of York's property market.

Property developer Paul Brown, of Caedmon Homes in Easingwold, expects the Yorkshire residential market to remain resilient, and house prices to hold steady or even increase.

York Press:

Property developer Paul Brown, of Caedmon Homes.  Picture Tony Johnson.

“I say this despite the fears of a substantial increase in unemployment, the adverse changes in stamp duty in June and the possibility of a post-Covid recession. I believe Yorkshire, where the quality of life is excellent, will be insulated against the worst of the fallout.

"Hotspots will include York, with such quick access to London by train; the villages around Boroughbridge, with the A1 so close; and East Coast resorts like Whitby, which was named as the most sought-after seaside town in the UK by Rightmove earlier this year.

"The market will be stimulated by a seismic change in working patterns, a permanent legacy of Covid, with people searching for more space so that working from home can be a joy rather than a nightmare.

"As the economy recovers towards the end of this year, I expect northern regions to continue to see the greatest price growth, further closing the gap with those in the south. In particular, North Yorkshire has so much to offer, from its historic cities, to the glorious Moors and Dales to its majestic coastline, and this will be reflected in the county’s house prices."

York Press:

Ben Hudson, of Hudson Moody

Ben Hudson, of York-based Hudson Moody, said: "People who no longer have to work in the likes of London are making lifestyle choices and relocating to York.

"This has driven up house prices in some areas as competition has escalated. I think this year will continue to move apace with people re-evaluating where they are. The re-opening of York’s hospitality sector will bring people looking for second homes, and investment in buy-to-let properties will increase."

He said developments such as Hudson Quarter were adding to York’s housing supply, and he believes York is well placed to weather the storm with house values potentially rising by a further five per cent rise by the end of 2021.

York Press:

Hudson House is one of the developments which has continued in York during the pandemic.

"Following our reopening on May 13, 2020, sales have been running at more than twice the normal averages as buyers have re-evaluated where they are living and require different accommodation due to the pandemic.”

David Smith, of Mulgrave Properties, said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has turned house purchaser’s priorities upside down, as to where and how they want to live.

"Prior to the pandemic, the house served as a base to come home to after a long day at the office to relax during the evenings and weekend.

"All this has now changed with the home being used 24/7 and serving a dual function role as an office during the day, and a place to live in the evenings and weekends.

"This means the design of the property and shopping list of “essential requirements” have completely changed and there is a very strong demand for properties that can offer plenty of space to fulfil both functions.

York Press:

David Smith, of Mulgrave Properties.

"Of course, quality nearby schools and good transport links still feature high on the list, however there has been a significant shift in demand towards properties with larger gardens preferably in villages in the open countryside to breathe fresh air.

"Looking forward to sales in the next 12 months, I see strong demand for properties in more rural and coastal locations as people look to escape more built up areas, as well as more homes that have space for home working.”