How Will the Meaning of Home Change?

The Coronavirus outbreak has generated a significant amount of uncertainty in financial markets and for the global economy. The range of potential impacts varies wildly from forecaster to forecaster, but it has become clear that this is unlike anything the U.S. has faced in modern history.

EVERYTHING real estate is always ULTRA-localized and will more than likely vary dramatically from region to region, city to city, neighborhood to neighborhood, price-point to price-point. National 'averages' related to real estate pricing and valuation are almost meaningless.

The weeks we’re spending inside are going to forever change our concept of home. We are living through the biggest shift in the relationship between people and their homes since the 1950s when the American Dream of home ownership swept the nation.

Home has never meant so much to us in so many different ways. Home is now where we live... and work... and eat… and sleep… and exercise… and relax… and stress out… and play. Living rooms have become classrooms and exercise studios and virtual meeting rooms. Kitchens have become restaurants serving breakfast, lunch and dinner every single day and way too many snacks in between. Some bedrooms have become hospital quarantine rooms where we care for the sick while trying not to get sick ourselves.

Home is now the place where we shelter in place. Home is where we stay to keep safe, and keep our families safe and keep our communities safe. Staying in our homes is literally saving people’s lives; our homes have become life-saving devices.

Our homes have become everything to us.

After this, the idea of home may never be the same again. It’s changing in ways that are clear to us now and in ways that won’t be clear for a long time. When this is over, what will we expect from our homes? What types of places will people want to live? What scenarios will they be preparing for? What will words like “comfort” and “safety” and “community” mean to us? Will there be an increased demand for touchless controls, better outdoor space and delivery handling accommodations? Will we seek out less density?

How will our idea of our place in the world — or of the world itself — be different?

I take seriously my responsibility to help people find the home that provides the sense of belonging, sense of security and sense of possibility that will be more important tomorrow than ever before.