The virus-induced shutdown could put McMansions back on the menu in Australia as families bunker down to weather the health and economic crisis.
Experts say outer ring areas disadvantaged by long commuting times are also poised to see renewed demand as employees get a taste of working from home.
A survey conducted by social research agency McCrindle and research platform Cint found that nearly four in five (78 per cent) Australians think working from home will become the new normal.
The poll of 1015 people between March 19-23 also found that more than three in four (76 per cent) said they would stay longer with their employer if they were offered more remote working or flexible working options.
More than half ( 57 per cent) also said other people around and a lack of appropriate space were challenges they faced when working from home.
Demographer Mark McCrindle said these experiences could influence how people choose their next home.
"The extent to which this working arrangement has lasted and will last means that it will be deeply entrenched in people's psyches and therefore weigh on home buying decisions," he said.
"There will be a premium to home ownership over renting and detached homes over high rise apartments. This benefits some outer rings suburbs or regions near capital cities that used to have the disadvantage of long commute times."
Outer ring, lifestyle suburbs set to lift
CoreLogic's research director Tim Lawless said the more affordable outer ring areas are likely to see a boost in demand if working from home becomes the norm.
"Major hubs near the capital cities like the Gold Coast, Noosa, or Central Coast in Sydney, could see increase in demand as work becomes less reliant on commuting," he said.
Select Residential Property research director Jeremy Sheppard said if there's a flight to the suburbs because of COVID-19, these outer ring areas could see a bump in home values.
"There’s bound to be some buyers who decide to buy socially-distanced houses rather than commune near CBDs. Time will tell how big a proportion of buyers they are," he said.
Melbourne-based buyer's agent Cate Bakos said she's already seeing a shift in buyers' preferences as a result of the shutdown.
"I've seen an uptick in the number of people moving farther into the country or into areas that are within commuting distance to the CBD," she said.
"People want to get larger land, not necessarily for farming or animal-keeping, but for a healthier lifestyle and getting away from the high-density living."
Sydney-based buyer's agent Victor Kumar, director of Right Property Group, said he has also noticed a change in buyers' mindset.
"I have a couple of investor clients who were renting in the inner city and were hesitant to buy their first home in the outer south west area because of the long commute to work," he said.
"But when I spoke to them a couple of days ago, they said they were now open to buying their home within the Macarthur or Badgerys Creek area, because their employers have flagged they could work flexibly from home for a day or two a week, which was a game changer for them."
Mr McCrindle said bigger homes with more rooms could also become desirable again as people move back to the parental homes.
"McMansions with all those extra bedrooms would be back in vogue as you get multiple households - the parents, the kids and the grandparents- living under one roof," he said.
"Bigger homes have their purpose during these times of social distancing and working from home as you can turn the spare rooms into a study room for children or into a home office," he said.
"In times of insecurity, people look to increase their sense of safety. Detached homes provide that security as you're not forced into that community living."