A boost in bandwidth can mean a boost in value
For many buyers, the ability to connect to the internet at a reasonable speed is an increasingly important feature when searching for potential homes, even edging out more traditional needs.
What do people look for when buying a new house? A nice garden? Good neighbours? How about a nice selection of nearby restaurants, or perhaps a local gym? Well, recent polls have shown that these amenities are being overshadowed in the minds of UK home buyers by one small factor: internet speed.
Research by broadband provider Hyperoptic has found a consistent growth in demand for reliable fast web access each year, with over 60% of the 3000 respondents considering it more important than an extra bedroom and 70% now checking access speeds during the house buying process. UK house buying experts are now advising those hoping to sell their property fast to ensure a good connection is offered in the property, reflecting the attitudes revealed by the poll, which has shown that buyers are extremely likely to rule out a property if the available speed is less than 9mbps. It also appears people are willing to pay on average an extra £23,000 for speeds over 100mbps.
So, what speed should you aim for? According to Hyperoptic, buyers look for a minimum of 18mbps when purchasing a house. While this speed is easily obtainable in urban areas, those in more rural settings are likely to suffer.
Improvements to speed can be made, but it is expensive to install new infrastructure in areas that tend to rely on old cabling, which was never intended to carry any signal other than a phone call. Options include rural broadband, an example of which is the B4RN network for certain areas between Preston and Kendal in north-west England, which provides speeds surpassing 1000mbps without the need for a BT line. Unfortunately, these schemes are not nationwide, and the chances of receiving the service depend entirely on the level of demand from the community.
Clearly, as the world becomes more interconnected, many of the services available via the internet such as Netflix, Amazon, eBay – not to mention the ability to check email – are indispensable for most house-hunters in today’s society. Those house sellers and estate agents who fail to take note of this cultural shift will surely start to fall behind.
“For many years broadband has been considered a ‘techy’ issue or, at best, ‘a nice to have’,” said Steve Holford, chief customer officer of Hyperoptic. “It’s good to see so many more Brits taking the time to check what services are available before they make an offer on a property, rather than moving in and being very disappointed.”
Worried your home isn’t appealing to buyers for one reason or another? Why not ask National Homebuyers for advice, as we buy any house. Call 08000 443 911 or request a call back to find out how much you could get for your property.