A survey by an online comparison website for removal companies says that more than 500,000 people have moved in 2021 so far, across rental and sales sectors, with the average distance travelled between the old home and the new home 54 per cent from an average of 32 miles to 50 miles a home move.
The survey also appears to suggest a significant number of people moving out from the cities to towns or rural areas.
Of some 67,000 people have moved out of cities to towns or rural areas and just 30,000 ‘outsiders’ have moved in. This is despite companies and employees preparing for a return to office in July.
Between 2019 and this month, there has been a 20 per cent decrease in people moving from rural areas to cities.
“In the past year as offices closed and more people worked from home or were placed on furlough we witnessed a strong current of people moving out from cities into rural areas or towns, whether permanently or temporarily” says Angus Elphinstone, chief executive of AnyVan, the firm behind the survey.
“Now that offices are back open employers and employees face a conundrum as to whether they help the working from home trend continue. At the moment our data shows us that we haven’t seen the trend invert. In fact, our data shows there has been a significant decrease in people moving from rural to cities at the start of 2021 than in 2019.
“Many companies are phasing a return to office and there are many employees that either want to go back in full-time or with some working from home involved.
“This means that we may well see more people returning to the cities, but it will be a gradual move and one we may not see start to gather pace until the summer when high streets are fully open and the vaccine programme has given more confidence to people living their lives in more crowded cities.”