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Pollution deterring homebuyers, survey suggests

Pollution deterring homebuyers, survey suggests

Homebuyers Prioritise Air Quality in Property Search, Survey Finds

Source: Property Industry Eye

A recent survey commissioned by eXp UK has revealed that a significant portion of UK homebuyers actively avoid areas with high air pollution when searching for their new homes.

The study, which involved over 3,000 respondents who purchased their properties within the last six months, sheds light on the importance of air quality in the decision-making process.

When asked about their general concern regarding air pollution, 67% of the respondents expressed worry. Furthermore, a substantial 63% of homebuyers confirmed that they actively disregarded areas with high air pollution levels during their property search.

The reasons for this avoidance varied among respondents, with 31% citing the desire for a better standard of living, 23% expressing concerns about the health of the planet, 22% aiming to protect their personal health, and 15% pointing to the well-being of their children.

Interestingly, 30% of the surveyed homebuyers were willing to move further away from their desired locations to ensure lower air pollution levels around their new homes.

Air pollution has become a prominent topic of discussion, especially in London, where the Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) is set to expand across all boroughs from 29 August 2023. This expansion has garnered mixed reactions, but the eXp UK research indicates that the majority of homebuyers support such initiatives. In fact, 67% of respondents expressed support for schemes like the ULEZ, and an overwhelming 83% believed that more initiatives aimed at reducing air pollution should be implemented in other regions of the UK.

As the importance of air quality in property searches continues to grow, online tools are available to help prospective homebuyers narrow down their options. Adam Day, head of eXp UK, commented on the findings, stating, "It certainly appears that the increasing appeal of the commuter belt and beyond isn't just about affordability; it's about health as well, which, in turn, leads to a better quality of life."

Day also acknowledged the potential downside of this trend, stating, "Of course, this could be seen as a double-edged sword as more demand for housing in less polluted areas will inevitably result in pollution levels rising. However, schemes such as the ULEZ in London are one way of curbing this increase in air pollution to ensure that those residing within a given area are safeguarded from a growing population."

The survey results underscore the increasing importance of air quality in property searches and the potential for policy initiatives like the ULEZ to shape the preferences of homebuyers in the future.


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