In line with latest Government’s guidelines on home moving, the housing market remains open, and all our offices in England, Scotland and Wales continue to operate. Health and safety remains our main priority, and we continue to follow a number of strict measures to protect our customers and staff. More information

The outdoor features house buyers will want in 2021

The outdoor features house buyers will want in 2021

The past 12 months has seen a huge shift in our priorities when it comes to our homes and what we want from them.

The Covid-19 lockdowns have taken their toll, particularly on those living in cities, who have been left yearning for more outdoor space in particular.

So, we’ve taken a look at the most searched-for outdoor features buyers are craving, as well as the most popular outdoor trends for 2021…


The top 15 outdoor features house buyers want

It seems buyers are setting their sights high, with a huge 392% increase in searches for ‘houses with pools’ in May 2020 compared with May 2019, before the pandemic took hold.

City-dwellers, meanwhile, many of whom may own or be renting a flat or apartment already, appear to have outdoor space firmly on their minds. Searches for ‘balcony garden’ (238%), ‘flat with balcony’ (191%) and ‘flat with garden’ (191%) all saw huge increases in May 2020, with those in Norwich and Plymouth most desperate to bring the outdoors in.


Ranking

Search term

Searches: May 2019

Searches: May 2020

% Increase

City searching for the most

1

houses with pools

590

2900

392%

Norwich

2

balcony garden

1300

4400

238%

Norwich

3

flat with balcony

110

320

191%

Plymouth

4

flat with garden

110

320

191%

Norwich

5

greenhouse

110000

301000

174%

Bristol

6

sheds

165000

450000

173%

Bristol

7

decking

90500

246000

172%

Bristol

8

communal garden

480

1300

171%

Norwich

9

cottage garden

5400

12100

124%

Norwich

10

balcony

8100

18100

123%

Bristol

11

houses with gardens

1300

2900

123%

Norwich

12

garden

90500

201000

122%

Bristol

13

conservatory

74000

135000

82%

Bristol

14

bifolding doors

60500

110000

82%

Bristol

15

roof terrace

2400

2900

21%

London



The top 20 outdoor trends for 2021

Children (and maybe adults, too), were clearly keen to take advantage of 2020’s lovely spring weather, as searches for paddling pools rose by an astonishing 1012% compared with the same time in 2019. With swimming pools closed during the tightest restrictions, it seems many homeowners and renters looked to entertain the kids with a splash about in the garden.

And with pubs remaining closed for much of the spring, the desire for a cold pint sparked a huge 650% increase in searches for ‘pub shed’, as DIY fans looked to potentially create their own watering holes in the back garden.

Searches for hot tubs, meanwhile, peaked in Belfast, while Liverpudlians focused on fire pits to give their properties’ outdoor spaces a lift.


Ranking

Search term

Searches: May 2019

Searches: May 2020

% Increase

City searching for the most

1

paddling pool

74000

823000

1012%

Bristol

2

pub shed

880

6600

650%

Norwich

3

hot tub

201000

1500000

646%

Belfast

4

boho garden

260

1600

515%

Bristol

5

balcony ideas

2400

12100

404%

London

6

fire pit

165000

823000

399%

Liverpool

7

balcony decoration

590

2900

392%

Norwich

8

permaculture gardening

210

1000

376%

Norwich

9

garden fireplace

1900

8100

326%

Bristol

10

balcony planters

6600

27100

311%

Nottingham

11

balcony garden

1300

4400

238%

Norwich

12

balcony furniture

6600

22200

236%

London

13

garden summer house

12100

40500

235%

Bristol

14

garden pergola

9900

33100

234%

Bristol

15

cottage garden plants

6600

18100

174%

Liverpool

16

man cave

8100

22200

174%

Bristol

17

white garden

590

1600

171%

Norwich

18

kids garden house

1900

4400

132%

Southampton

19

treehouse

27100

60500

123%

Norwich

20

wild garden

720

1600

122%

Norwich



Top garden design features

Interior design trends always command a large number of searches online, but with buyer and renter focus switching to that desire for outdoor space, May 2020 saw a huge number hunting for outdoor design trends.

Fire pit designs topped the list, with a massive 656% increase in searches when compared with May 2019, while outdoor sofas (309%), rattan garden furniture (233%) and timber decking (174%) also suggest a switch of focus to the outdoors.


Ranking

Search term

Searches: May 2019

Searches: May 2020

% Increase

1

garden furniture with fire pit

1600

12100

656%

2

garden rugs

6600

40500

514%

3

outdoor fire pit

8100

49500

511%

4

garden furniture sofa

1900

9900

421%

5

outdoor fireplace

5400

22200

311%

6

garden furniture paint

6600

27100

311%

7

outdoor sofas

18100

74000

309%

8

rattan garden furniture

165000

550000

233%

9

trellis fence

22200

74000

233%

10

luxury garden furniture

2900

8100

179%

11

iroko decking

260

720

177%

12

wicker garden furniture

5400

14800

174%

13

timber decking

8100

22200

174%

14

cast iron garden furniture

3600

8100

125%

15

sunken garden

880

1900

116%



Top allotment searches

The coronavirus pandemic has also seen a huge switch towards sustainability and the big outdoor trend to emerge last spring was growing your own fruit and veg – as well as baking banana bread, of course!

Searches for ‘home allotment’ grew by 170% in May 2020, alongside ‘garden allotment ideas’ (243%), ‘allotments near me’ (235%) and ‘how to get an allotment’ (213%) – with searches peaking in Plymouth, Norwich, Bristol and Southampton.

Searches for ‘growing vegetables on balcony’ also increased 420% from May 2019 to May 2020 – proving again that those in flats or apartments were aiming to make use of the outdoor space they had.


Ranking

Search term

Searches: May 2019

Searches: May 2020

% Increase

City searching for the most

1

home allotment

30

170

467%

Plymouth

2

garden allotment ideas

140

480

243%

Norwich

3

allotments near me

5400

18100

235%

Bristol

4

how to get an allotment

320

1000

213%

Southampton

5

allotment for rent

480

1300

171%

Norwich

6

allotment shed

720

1900

164%

Norwich

7

allotment ideas

3600

8100

125%

Bristol

8

allotment

22200

49500

123%

Manchester

9

allotment raised beds

480

1000

108%

Norwich

10

private allotments near me

210

390

86%

Norwich



The top 20 foods the UK is growing

While baking banana bread has been the pastime of choice for many during the Covid-19 lockdowns, many people have looked to combine that kind of sustainability with getting outdoors.

There’s a healthy feel to our list of the top-20 foods we’re growing during the pandemic, too, with searches for ‘growing radishes’ 519% higher in May 2020 than they were 12 months earlier. Searches on growing butternut squash, lettuce, peppers, spring onions, cucumbers, courgettes and potatoes all saw more than a 400% increase, too.


Ranking

Search term

Searches: May 2019

Searches: May 2020

% Increase

1

growing radishes

1600

9900

519%

2

growing butternut squash

1900

9900

421%

3

growing lettuce

1900

9900

421%

4

growing peppers

2400

12100

404%

5

growing spring onions

2400

12100

404%

6

growing cucumbers

6600

33100

402%

7

growing courgettes

6600

33100

402%

8

growing potatoes

9900

49500

400%

9

growing spinach

1900

8100

326%

10

growing beetroot

2900

12100

317%

11

growing sweet corn

2900

12100

317%

12

growing cauliflower

1300

5400

315%

13

growing aubergines

2400

9900

313%

14

growing coriander

2400

9900

313%

15

growing peas

4400

18100

311%

16

growing carrots

3600

14800

311%

17

growing onions

3600

14800

311%

18

growing tomatoes

12100

49500

309%

19

growing broad beans

2900

9900

241%

20

growing chillies

2900

9900

241%



Further reading…

This year is looking like another year of change for the property market in the UK, as we navigate our way through the coronavirus pandemic.

Find our everything you can expect from the market in 2021 by taking a look at our guide.

And with more and more buyers looking to switch from the city to a rural property, here are the best places to look for your next property.

Methodology:
Martin & Co used Google Keyword Planner to pull the search volume for all outdoor-related searches across five different categories. We then took the May 2019 volume as well as the May 2020 volume and worked out the increase or decrease to give us our percentages. For the regional data, we pulled the individual search volumes for our top terms for each category across the 18 biggest cities in the UK. We divided these numbers by the population of those cities in order to find who was searching for those terms the most per capita, which gave us our regional rankings.