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Pandemic May Be Altering Home Buying Habits In Colorado

DENVER (CBS4) - The coronavirus pandemic has shown many people the importance of keeping a clear physical distance from each other during a health crisis, and the same could be happening for homebuyers who may now find it more appealing to have more space from neighbors. Real estate agents CBS4 interviewed this week said there had already been a trend for people to move out to the suburban areas, but they think the pandemic could push even more people to move out of city centers such as downtown Denver.

Austin Hartley with Hartley Team Realty told CBS4 that COVID-19 has created a lot of uncertainty in the housing market. Though inventory has dropped because many sellers have taken their homes off the market, he said prices have not, and he said, more of his clients are asking about single-family homes.

"We've really seen a movement already of people moving from very rural areas and city living -- very dense areas -- to more of a suburb life, where you have a single-family area, you're 20 minutes from the city, you're close enough to stores where if there's no meat and toilet paper in the stores, you can still get some (somewhere) and you're also not right on top of your neighbors. I think this is definitely going to speed up that trend."

Hartley also said the pandemic has made clients more interested in extra space so they can work from home. It's another reason why some may move to the suburbs.

Lower inventory has also pushed prices up. Hartley says he's seen some clients willing to pay more for residences, especially single-family homes.

Hartley thinks what he's seeing early signs of how the pandemic has changed people's preference in home buying, however, he said it is too early to know for sure if this is long-term.  He said data is now being collected, and it should paint a clearer picture in a few months.

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