Terminus House, Caridon Property Group’s Central Harlow property, comprises part-furnished studios and one and two-bedroom apartments. Each unit features a contemporary design and laundry facilities, with lift access and parking available on site. Situated in Central Harlow, Essex, within easy walking distance of the high street and superstores, Terminus House offers easy access to a wide range of dining experiences and leisure activities.

This article will look at the importance of location among homeowners and renters, exploring the benefits of living in developments that present easy access to local attractions and amenities.

The COVID-19 pandemic had a huge impact on consumer behaviour, triggering a significant uptick in business for ecommerce stores as shoppers took their spending power online. Simultaneously, dependence on local amenities plummeted amidst repeated lockdowns and stay-at-home orders.

Research from Strutt & Parker suggests that the number one motivator for moving home during the pandemic was the opportunity to live in a preferred area. For 81% of respondents, the decision to move home was primarily influenced by location. In terms of the most desirable locations, 12% said they would prefer to live in a small city, while 17% chose a town. Meanwhile, 29% said they wanted to live in a big city. 75% of respondents cited access to local shops as a motivator for selecting their new home, representing a significant increase from 47% just five years before.

As of March 2021, the UK Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme had supported more than 11 million jobs, with roughly half of the nation’s workforce working completely away from their place of work. Relieved of their daily commute, remote and furloughed workers spent more time at home, heeding government advice to avoid unnecessary journeys.

When non-essential shops reopened their doors in June 2020, Business Secretary Alok Sharma predicted that the move would culminate in high streets springing back to life. His assertion proved to be well founded, with more than 62% of shoppers returning to UK high streets following the first lockdown, venturing out to purchase non-essential items. Meanwhile, only 19% and 25% of returning shoppers said that they had visited shopping centres or retail parks respectively.

Data from YouGov suggests that in post-pandemic Britain, 46% of shoppers continued to show a preference for buying from local sources after lockdown measures had been eased. Encouragingly, 24% had increased their spending with local producers. Homebuyers rank supermarkets as the most important amenity to have within easy reach of their homes. Meanwhile, local shops and corner shops were rated as the next most important amenities for new primary homes.

Proximity to schools also featured prominently in homebuyers’ wish lists during the pandemic, with parents anxious for their children to return to school. In addition, homebuyers showed a preference for properties with good transport links, with 26% of respondents agreeing that they needed to be within a maximum of two miles from the nearest transport hub.

Close proximity to local amenities presents homeowners and renters with more than merely the opportunity to buy groceries easily; it enables residents to explore their new local area, discovering new places and enjoying new activities with family and friends. For families in particular, in-store events and activities hosted by high street shops can provide a fun and interesting way to spend time with the children, encouraging residents to get involved in the local community and helping them to meet new people and build new friendships and relationships.

Living near the centre of a city or town enables residents to meet most of their needs within a short bicycle ride or walk from their home. While the pandemic may have motivated some homeowners to look beyond urban areas, for many more, easy access to local amenities still ranks highly in buyer and renter priorities.