COVID-19 April 1, 2020 Update – Real Estate in a new world

Real estate has not been immune to the challenges we all are facing from COVID-19. While sales and listings are continuing to occur, recent data shows volumes are down significantly, mostly in listing volume. In some ways this will further reduce inventory, already challenging to buyers, but the off-set of a reduction of buyers will temper any price increase. The reduced number of buyers may in fact impair prices downward. The good news is that anyone out trying to buy right now, in a virtual world, is serious. Below find my take-aways on where we are & where we might be heading:

Current market:

  • Any listing currently under contract is allowed to close. Brokers, inspectors, appraisers, mortgage professionals are all allowed to do what is takes to fulfill contracts, with proper distancing, remote meetings, etc.
  • Moving companies can now move people to fulfill contract obligations, protect jobs or finances, & public safety.
  • Agents can list properties, tour properties, write offers, etc. providing that as much as possible is done remotely, & safe distancing on-site is followed.

Future Market:

  • Sales:
    • Listing volume is down significantly the last week after spiking because of the impending shut down. I expect list volume to increase significantly as restrictions are lifted for 3 reasons:
      • delayed spring surge.
      • Sellers / investors on the fence till now, feeling a sense of urgency to take advantage of high prices and the fear of an unknown future.
      • Struggling homeowners & landlords affected negatively by COVID-19 selling to avoid even larger problems.
  • Prices & interest rates:
    • Prices will fall due to increased inventory (see above), plus fewer qualified buyers out looking. This will begin to show this month as inventory rises, buyers disappear, & mortgages become harder to get.
    • Interest rates will rise as lenders increase their ‘risk premium’ amid an uncertain future.
    • Mortgages will become harder to get as underwriting standards are tightened up.

Need help with your real estate?? Give me a call or send an email, we can do a virtual meeting to discuss all your real estate needs.

Stay Home, Stay Safe – God Bless

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