Home Coronavirus People were Winners from Pandemic Relocations

People were Winners from Pandemic Relocations


About two-thirds of surveyed Redfin.com users who relocated over the last year have the same or lower housing costs, and almost as many said their new home is the same size or bigger. That’s according to a new report from Redfin (www.redfin.com), the technology-powered real estate brokerage. Key findings from Redfin’s recent survey of Redfin.com users who moved to a different metro area from March 2020 through March 2021: 

  • 78% have the same or more disposable income after their move. 
  • 68% have the same or lower housing costs than before their move. 
  • 64% moved into a home that’s the same size or bigger than their previous residence.  
  • 80% have no regrets about their decision to relocate.
  • 80% are happier post-move. 

Redfin conducted the survey during the first two weeks of April, surveying about 500 Redfin.com users who moved to a different metro area in the last year or plan to relocate in the next year. While housing costs went down and disposable income went up for many respondents, 64% reported moving into a house that’s bigger or at least the same size as their previous home—likely because many homebuyers moved to metro areas with more affordable housing. 

For 27% of respondents who have either moved in the last year or plan to move in the next year, living somewhere more affordable is a motivating factor in their move, and 21% said they’re relocating to live somewhere with lower taxes. 

“I recently worked with a couple that listed their home in Los Angeles and moved to Ohio because the wife was able to work remotely,” said Los Angeles Redfin agent Lindsay Katz. “The house sold for more than $1 million and they bought a nice home in Ohio for around $400,000. The husband had been a teacher in Los Angeles, but now he’s able to stay home and raise the kids because they’re saving so much money. Their mortgage is half of what it was, taxes are lower, even food costs less. Remote work allowed them to re-evaluate their living situation and their finances.” 

80% of people who relocated during the pandemic have no regrets

There has been a fair amount of speculation about the psychology of pandemic homebuyers, with some wondering whether homebuyers will regret making such a major life decision in the midst of a once-in-a-lifetime global crisis. Soaring prices and intense competition have led some homebuyers to do things they wouldn’t do in a typical year, like waive inspection and appraisal contingencies and buy homes sight unseen in an area they don’t yet live in. 

While there are stories of certain buyers regretting their home purchases—and 15% of respondents to Redfin’s survey have at least some regrets about their moves—it seems that the vast majority of homebuyers feel they made the right choice. 

“For most people, relocating to a different metro area probably wasn’t a knee-jerk reaction to the pandemic,” said Redfin lead economist Taylor Marr. “A lot of Americans had already been considering relocating, but they were blocked from actually making the move because they had to stay close to their office or wanted to live near friends or their child’s school. The pandemic and resulting work-from-home culture has removed some of those barriers, allowing many people to choose where they live based on factors like affordability, proximity to family and weather. And the loosening of social ties that come with remote work, remote schooling and a lack of in-person events made it somewhat easier for families to leave their comfort zone and try somewhere new. Those people are likely to be satisfied with their moves because the circumstances of the pandemic have allowed them to chase their dreams.” 

To read the full report, including additional survey findings and graphs, please visit:

About Redfin 
Redfin (www.redfin.com) is a technology-powered real estate broker, instant home-buyer (iBuyer), lender, title insurer, and renovations company. We sell homes for more money and charge half the fee. We also run the country’s #1 real-estate brokerage site. Our home-buying customers see homes first with on-demand tours, and our lending and title services help them close quickly. Customers selling a home can take an instant cash offer from Redfin or have our renovations crew fix up their home to sell for top dollar. Since launching in 2006, we’ve saved customers more than $1 billion in commissions. We serve more than 95 markets across the U.S. and Canada and employ over 4,100 people. 

For more information or to contact a local Redfin real estate agent, visit www.redfin.com. To learn about housing market trends and download data, visit the Redfin Data Center. To be added to Redfin’s press release distribution list, email [email protected]. To view Redfin’s press center, click here.

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S. Jack Heffernan Ph.D. Economist at Knightsbridge holds a Ph.D. in Economics and brings with him over 25 years of trading experience in Asia and hands on experience in Venture Capital, he has been involved in several start ups that have seen market capitalization over $500m and 1 that reach a peak market cap of $15b. He has managed and overseen start ups in Crypto, Mining, Shipping, Technology and Financial Services.