Property Outlook: Trends, challenges, interest rates

Real estate has always been one of the most resilient sectors, come hell or high water or quite literally, a global health pandemic.

Indeed, the industry has remained resilient despite the challenges and is even seeing new trends.

Property Report has noted some of the trends that emerged as a result of the pandemic which will likely continue to guide the industry.

Sustainability: Green is in

There’s no surprise here given that the pandemic put strong emphasis on mental health which as we’ve seen during the lockdowns, was positively influenced by green developments. The more greenery we have in our places of residence and work, the better we feel.

Against this backdrop, there has been an increasing interest in sustainable and eco-friendly real estate projects. Developers are incorporating green technologies and environmentally friendly designs to attract environmentally conscious buyers.

Technology  integration

Because of new ways of doing things such as work-from-home, hybrid work or online schooling, real estate developments had to improve their technology infrastructure. Even the way developers sell their products has become hi-tech. Technology in real estate is on the rise. This includes the use of virtual reality for property tours, online property management platforms, and smart home technologies integrated into new developments.

Mixed-use developments

While integrated developments existed long before the pandemic, these developments, which combine residential, commercial, and retail spaces in a single complex have gained more popularity in recent years. In all, these projects aim to create a holistic and convenient living experience for residents.

Rise of co-living spaces

Millennials and Gen Zs love their people and their community. This is why co-living spaces are gaining traction. Shared housing arrangements with communal facilities, particularly in urban areas, are popular and cater to young professionals seeking affordable and flexible living arrangements.

Expansion in provincial areas

Property Report was among the first to report the donut effect or the growing interest outside metro areas, specifically provincial cities and towns. This is driven by the desire to decongest urban centers and tap into emerging markets. It has become popular during the pandemic as many families opted to move to less populated and less stressful cities.

Infrastructure development

Because of the government’s “Build, Build, Build” infrastructure program, there have been improvements in connectivity and accessibility in different regions across the country. Many homebuyers look into infrastructure before buying developments or moving into a place. Many prefer transport-oriented residential buildings or those close to MRT or LRT stations and other major thoroughfares.

Interest rates

However, the real estate industry is not without challenges.

A major challenge now is higher interest rates. As Federal Land Inc. president William Thomas Mirasol said during BusinessWorld’s Forecast 2024 economic forum, “higher interest rates naturally bring down demand. But as the economy is growing, we see more consumers that are more confident in the future. They’re saying the interest rate is higher than it used to be but it’s not that scary.”

Next level

In the same forum, Jon Canto, partner and managing partner McKinsey & Co said that real estate has been resilient but sustained demand and investments will take it to the next level.