Sustained Demand for Garden Offices Continues in the Post-Pandemic Era

by James Powell

Sustained Demand for Garden Offices Continues in the Post-Pandemic Era

At JW Wood Estate Agents, we observe that the surge in interest for 'garden offices' during the height of the pandemic has seamlessly transitioned into a strong demand for hybrid work solutions. Recently released data from L&G sheds light on this trend, showcasing an increased prevalence of homes featuring garden offices in the market.

"The intriguing rise in garden office construction aligns with the evolving shift from traditional work routines to hybrid models."

Insights from Legal & General Surveying Services provide a comprehensive overview of Google searches related to garden offices, emphasising the ongoing importance of optimising living spaces for hybrid work arrangements following the pandemic. The analysis highlights an annual average of 396,000 Google searches for 'garden office' from April 1st to March 31st (2022-2023).

A Trend in Ascendancy

Indeed, while the pandemic's peak prompted a surge in 'garden office' searches, reaching 726,000 between 2020 and 2021, in previous years saw a decline, with 486,000 searches recorded in 2021-2022. Notably, despite this dip in overall searches during 2022-2023, they remained 22% higher than the pre-pandemic period (2019-2020).

Delving deeper, our search reveals a significant rise in properties listed for sale that feature garden offices over the past decade. According to data from Rightmove, the proportion of property listings incorporating the term 'garden office' is now 11 times greater than it was a decade ago, representing an impressive surge of 1,046%.

This surge aligns harmoniously with the persistent trend of UK professionals seeking adaptable hybrid work solutions. 'Hybrid working' searches experienced a remarkable surge post the initial lockdown, skyrocketing from an average annual count of 120 searches to nearly 119,000 in the period of 2022-2023.

Tangible Value Enhancement

Specially conducted research underscores the substantial value that a garden office, or the conversion of an existing out-building into one, can contribute to a property. On average, the addition of a garden office can increase property value by 7.5%, equating to an approximate gain of £21,563.

Essential Considerations for Property Owners

While the potential property value uplift through garden office construction is notable, there are crucial aspects that homeowners and potential buyers considering this addition must consider.

In many instances, garden offices can be classified as permitted development, eliminating the necessity for planning permission. However, specific criteria must be met:

  • The structure must not be situated in front of a primary elevation wall.
  • It should maintain an eaves height not exceeding 2.5 meters and a maximum height of four meters for a dual-pitched roof, or three meters for other roof styles
  • The overall height should not surpass 2.5 meters, and the structure should remain within two meters of a boundary.

At JW Wood Estate Agents, we're committed to providing insights that enhance your property decisions. The sustained demand for garden offices signifies the evolving landscape of modern living and work preferences, and we're here to guide you through every step of this exciting journey.

Source: Adapted from Property Reporter

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