COVID-19 AND REAL ESTATE
Will COVID-19 effect real estate? In our opinion the simple answer is yes. We feel and have seen a slowing of the market. Buyers are not keen to go into other people’s homes, Royal LePage has cancelled and will not hold any open houses in the near future and sellers are thinking twice about listing their homes unless they have to.
This will create a situation of leveling out the market. We expect to see less multiple offers so prices may soften a bit. This is not all bad news. Buyers will have an easier time in buying a home at a more reasonable price and yet the value of homes is still high.
Recently we had two of the exact same model of homes for sale. The differences between the two were minor and in a normal marker should have sold for very close to the same price. The first home went on the market just before all the restrictions and closing were announced. That home received 6 offers and sold for $65,000 over asking. The second home went to market just as all the closings and restrictions were announced. That home received three offers and sold for $41,000 over asking, a difference of $24,000 for no obvious reason except for the change in the market in a two week period.
So, if you’re thinking of buying or selling we offer a bit of advice:
- Still a great time to sell with values still strong.
- Good time to buy with the market value of homes stabilizing and even falling a bit.
- Use online views of homes. Today there are great photos of most listing as well as virtual tours. These will give you an idea if a home is even worth visiting.
- If you are listing your home, use an agent that provides professional photos and tours. If you don’t, you’re putting the sale of your home in jeopardy.
- Be smart! If you’re selling your home have hand sanitizer available for visitors and wipe down surfaces such as light switches, banisters and door knobs with a disinfectant wipe of spray.
- Leave all lights on for a showing especially in the even and instruct your agent to tell other agents to leave all lights on and not to touch light switches or lamps.
- Make sure to go out for a walk or a drive when an appointment is scheduled so that you do not come in direct contact with potential buyers.
- Ask that showing agents let your agent know when a showing is finished so you can be informed and return home.
- If you are a buyer do not go to visit a home if you are ill or have just returned from a vacation. You’ll just have to wait and see what homes are on the market after you are clear of an illness or have finished a self quarantine.
LET’S ALL BE SAFE AND SMART! This pandemic will pass. It will take some time as the experts have said but being careful can not only save you from a severe illness but may save the life of others including your own family.
You can still buy and sell real estate. It will just be different and require a “SAFETY FIRST” attitude!
Stay well and stay safe.
Irwin & Mindi Hartman
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