The COVID-19 crisis and the stay-at-home orders have resulted in millennials changing their relationships with their homes. Nowadays, the lines between home, work and play are more blurred than ever. So, how will homes of millennials look like in a post-Covid era?
A recent suvey on the “At-Home-Pandemic Experience” conducted on more than 500 guests worldwide by Blueground, a real estate tech company that offers furnished apartments for flexible stays of a month or longer, has helped highlight the trends that will dominate the home space. Amine Housni, regional manager of Blueground Middle East, lists these as the need for functional work stations, larger spaces, access to outdoors and wellness areas.
Functional working stations: With more and more people working from home, amenities such as high-speed internet, speakers and comfortable working stations will be vital. Furnished apartments will need to add spacious and practical working stations (premium desks, high-quality office chairs) as an integral part of their offering. In a post-COVID era, the apartment is both a home and a workplace.
Larger spaces with more indoor amenities: Taking into consideration that people will spend more time at home, the need for larger spaces and amenities such as in-unit washers and dryers will become even bigger value points for apartments.
Access to open outdoor spaces: There will be an increasing need for access to outdoor space, even for the smallest of spaces. There is now an increase in searches for “balconies”. Going forward, apartments that feature balconies will be much more popular among millennials.
Big windows: According to several studies the exposure to natural light promotes happiness; better sleep, more physical activity, and higher productivity levels. Spending much more time at home means millennials will be more likely to seek apartments with big windows or gadgets that replicate the effects of natural light.
Wellness and workout areas: Without a doubt, COVID-19 has forced us to exercise indoors. Although the majority of the gyms and fitness centers have reopened, the at-home workouts and exercises seem to be here to stay - at least for the time being. So, a specially-designed place for meditation, yoga, or workout that is separate from the rest of the house would be very popular among millennials.
Spacious kitchen: The kitchen has become increasingly important since more millennials are cooking. Also, with less opportunities to meet for dinner or drinks outside, hosting small groups at home safely to remain sociable is a go-to for many and so the kitchen is where it will start and end.
68 per cent of people surveyed said they were working just as much, if not more, during their time at home. But this does not mean productivity is at an all-time high. In Dubai, in particular, almost 63 per cent of people reported they were getting the same or less amount of work done, although they were working much more
Globally, only 4 per cent of Blueground’s guests reported the at-home situation as a stressor during this time, while one-fourth of guests said their relationships saw no true change during this time. What is truly interesting is that in Dubai, the majority of guests (60 per cent) spent the pandemic at home all alone.
Around 44 per cent of worldwide guests reported more worried about the future, while nearly a third were trying to stay hopeful about returning back to the ‘normal life’ they once knew.
In Dubai, in particular, nearly 30 per cent of our Middle East guests were looking forward to the future, while roughly 10 per cent cited being even more optimistic as a result of challenges endured.