Sunday, 19 September 2021

Buyers choose home in just 38 minutes

ACCORDING to recent data, on average it takes just 38 minutes to make a decision to buy a home.

ACCORDING to recent data, on average it takes just 38 minutes to make a decision to buy a home.

This means the average homebuyer in the UK now spends less time than it takes to play one half of a football match, before making one of the biggest and most expensive decisions of their lives.

With the vast amount of property and local information now available online — including the Standard’s own Property section ( — house hunters no longer need to spend hours viewing properties and interrogating estate agents before deciding on which property is right for them.

Property values, property purchase history, recently sold properties, photos, floor plans, Google street view, school catchment area, transport links, employment opportunities, crime rate, tax band and so much more is available at the click of a mouse.

Nearly two-thirds of people view a property on two occasions before making an offer to buy with 10 per cent doing so after just one viewing, and only 29 per cent returning to a property more than twice.

The research reveals women take slightly less time (38 minutes) than men (39 minutes) when viewing a property before deciding to put in an offer.

However, men were more likely to make a snap decision with 11 per cent of them choosing to put in an offer after just one viewing, compared with nine per cent for women. The survey found those spending £500,000 or more on a property did manage to take two minutes longer on average before deciding to buy (probably sensible given the amount of money involved!).

However, according to the new data, whether you are spending £100,000 or more than £500,000, there is only a matter of minutes between making a decision across each price bracket.

An online property website spokesperson said: “The fact of the matter is people don’t need to spend as much time on the viewing process as they once did.

“The reason for this is simple. Now when a potential buyer views a house, they are viewing the house and the house only.

“With the internet providing a wealth of information, they already know if a property will suit them from a practical point of view before stepping through the front door.

“If a property has ticked all the boxes prior to a viewing, then all that is left is whether you walk through the door and your heart screams, ‘This is it!’

“Most potential buyers will know within the first 60 seconds whether or not it is the one for them and the majority of buyers tend to return for a second viewing just to validate their thinking.”

Viewings before making an offer%

One viewing 10

Two viewings 61

Three or more 29

Time to make that offer (per cent)

Less than 15 mins - 13 per cent

15 to 30 mins - 36 per cent

30 to 45 mins - 28 per cent

45 mins or longer - 23 per cent

Property price

Under £200,000 - 39 mins

£200,000 to £500,000 - 38 mins

More than £500,000 - 40 mins

By LUCY BOON, Standard property correspondent

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