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Why you should include your home office in your listing

by Heather Warthen
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With the recent COVID-19 pandemic, having a home office went from being a nice-to-have feature to a must-have amenity for those joining the work from home life.

Based on Global Workplace Analytics’ analysis of the 2018 American Community Service (ACS) data, more than 5 million employees, or 3.6% of the U.S. employee workforce, currently work at home half of the time or more. 

Add in the recent pandemic – which had 40% of adults ages 18-64 working remotely, according to a Pew Research Center survey in March – and you have homebuyers eager to find a home complete with additional space for their new home office, or in some cases, a “Zoom Room.”

A survey conducted by Zillow in May showed that having a home office space was at the top of the wish list for potential home buyers – something sellers with a home office seem to have taken note of when listing their home. 

In that same survey, Zillow also noticed a recent uptick in sellers mentioning a home office in their listings – this past April, a home office was mentioned in 8.2% of all for-sale listings which is an estimated 10% increase from 2019.

With many homeowners taking advantage of home improvement projects during the recent quarantine – with most redoing kitchens or bathrooms – 1 in 10 homeowners chose to remodel or add a home office last year, according to the 2020 U.S. Houzz & Home Study. The study also revealed that Millennials (11%) and Gen Xers (11%) were more likely to create a home office than Baby Boomers (9%).

The results of Zillow’s survey also uncovered that 31% of respondents were likely to consider moving if they could continue working from home to live in a home with a dedicated office space, giving those selling a home another reason to list their home office space as an amenity in their listing.

While those working from home likely already had a dedicated office space, many suddenly joining the work-from-home workforce were faced with the challenge of creating a home office space. Many people chose to repurpose bedrooms, living rooms and dining rooms as their new home office, but with that also came challenges including privacy and minimal interruptions, especially when the work from home lifestyle tends to come with countless video conferencing calls. 

Most people have seen the video of the toddlers accidentally crashing a live video interview with Professor Robert Kelley on the BBC, so having additional space in a home that can be used for privacy for Zoom calls has started appearing in real estate listings, according to a recent article on SFGATE.com. 

Working from home will likely continue as companies learn to navigate how to operate during the coronavirus pandemic. For those selling their home, adding your home office to your real estate listing could help you increase the value and desirability of your home.

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