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Google Search Trends Reveal a Tense Housing Market During the Pandemic

Market Data + Trends

Google Search Trends Reveal a Tense Housing Market During the Pandemic

Shifting preferences among buyers and sellers are highlighted in popular Google search terms over the past three years

December 16, 2021
Google searches

Google search analytics from the past two years reveal a shift in the preferences of renters, buyers, and homeowners driven by a plethora of uncertainties and unprecedented market trends during the pandemic. Home buyers were especially focused on affordability, Point2 reports, with a 108% increase in monthly searches for the phrase “affordable homes for sale” during 2020.

For renters, popular search phrases like “rent relief” and “eviction moratorium” shed light on a hostile post-pandemic market over the past two years, while homeowners searched for pointers on “mortgage refinancing” and “home office design” at an increased rate in 2020.

  • For homebuyers, some of the terms with the biggest spikes in the number of monthly searches were “affordable homes for sale” (up 108% in 2020 compared to pre-pandemic times), followed by search phrases such as “first-time homebuyer” and “tiny home for sale” — but also “luxury condos” which was up 50% compared to 2019.
  • For renters, certain search phrases appeared in 2020 and 2021 that, prior to the pandemic, few — if any — people knew about or were interested in: For example, “rent relief” went from 90 searches per month in 2019 to 9,900 in 2020 and 49,500 in 2021. Meanwhile, “eviction moratorium” was searched only 40 times per month in 2019, but came up a staggering 40,500 times in 202, as well as 201,000 times in 2021.

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