COVID-19 & Real Estate
COVID-19 has created uncertain times for citizens across the globe, and for those planning to take a financial leap, it might be downright scary. So, if you were one of the many people planning a spring home sale—or purchase—but have decided to wait, you may not have to wait long. Let’s take a look at what you can do in the interim.
Embrace a whole new [virtual] world
While virtual home tours have grown in the past few years, it’s practically mandatory these days. In fact, one of the best selling tips during coronavirus is embracing some of the outside-the-box ideas agents are coming up with to move homes.
Sellers should work with their agents to facilitate filming, as there is an increasing number of buyers purchasing homes sight unseen. And in those areas where agents are still actively practicing, many are hosting Zoom open houses or using FaceTime to conduct real-time house tours and answer questions on the spot.
When it comes to buying, you’re not forced to purchase without physically viewing the house. Still, you’ll want to take advantage of the virtual offerings available. And if you’re interested in a home, don’t sit on an offer. It’s still very much a seller’s market, with low inventory levels becoming increasingly lower as new home construction has halted in many areas.
Press ‘play’ when others are pausing
Coronavirus’ effects on the spring housing market have been most noticeable in the slowing of activity. While many state and local government regulations have forced a slowing, buyer and seller caution has caused people to pause their plans. This pause is great for those buyers and sellers who must move forward with a real estate transaction, as well as though who aren’t letting the housing market daunt them.
If sellers price carefully, they’ll take advantage of a housing market that favors them. The market remains backed by supply and demand, and inventory levels were already low when the virus reached pandemic proportions. Some sellers have reacted by pulling their homes from the market, choosing wait until things settle to re-enter. Because of this, those wishing to continue will face less listing competition -- it’s a great time to sell!
At the same time, buyers shouldn’t get discouraged by the seller’s market. Much like homeowners continuing to list while others hit pause on their plans to sell, many buyers are putting purchase plans on hold. There’s less competition for available inventory on the market, which bodes well for motivated buyers.
Make good use of your time
If you’re planning on selling, but want to wait a little longer to see how the market fares, take advantage of the extra time to do projects around the house. Get your home looking pristine and show-ready so that when the time comes, you’re positioned to list without a wait time.
With extra downtime, tackle years of clutter and begin organizing and packing in advance of your [eventual] move. Get storage areas looking orderly, showcasing the available space for potential buyers. And more than anything, spend some time outside, making sure your flower beds are well-tended and that your lawn is carefully maintained. Power washing your home’s exterior areas—siding, fencing, and deck—is the perfect project to make your home shine!
More than anything, motivated buyers and sellers should note that it’s as good a time as any to proceed with housing plans. However, those in areas where real estate transactions have halted, or those waiting things out, should make good use of their time. Take advantage of the opportunity to spend more time researching agents, skimming listings, tackling home projects, and even getting a head start on packing.