No one was ready for the pandemic, and it’s left many of us scrambling to determine our next steps. Specifically, what if you’re interested in selling your home during coronavirus? Is it possible, and furthermore, is it wise?
Current circumstances are reminiscent of the financial crisis of 2008, where the housing market did indeed take a massive hit. Is this going to be the same kind of situation?
Let’s dive in.
What Coronavirus Means for the Housing Market
First, it helps to understand what COVID-19 has done to real estate in a more general sense. While things will differ depending on where you exactly you live, here’s what research has found so far.
To the surprise of many, home prices have held relatively (and shockingly) steady, all things considered. A lot of people expected they'd need to dramatically lower their prices just to get the sale, but overwhelmingly, that hasn't been the case.
Where we have noticed a huge difference, however, is in the number of people actively trying to sell and purchase. Some estimates say that both the international and U.S. markets have seen a 50-75% drop in the volume of new listings. There have also been noticeably fewer people applying for mortgages. Furthermore, traffic to major real estate portals like Zillow dropped by 40% after coronavirus first left its mark.
The pandemic may have not affected us in the way we all expected it to, but it's certainly made its presence known.
What does all of this mean for you, as you’re in the process of trying to sell your home during coronavirus?
Is it Even Possible to Sell Your Home Right Now?
Yes, it’s possible — with a few new stipulations.
From a Federal level, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has deemed essential things like title search, notary, and other real estate services that support matters of mortgages and transactions.
However, again, this is at a federal level, meaning that your local governing body still has the right to make its own decisions. That’s why your situation largely depends on where you live and what’s happening there.
So, is it possible to sell your home right now? In all likelihood, yes. But…
Is it a Good Idea to Try Selling Your Home During Coronavirus?
Yes, it’s a good idea to try. Here are a few things to keep in mind.
The housing market was doing quite well before coronavirus hit, and in a sense, because housing prices didn’t tank, there’s still a good opportunity there for sellers.
Plus, because a lot of homeowners are deciding to hold off on listing their homes, it’s actually helping to somewhat improve the seller’s market, because there’s a lack of “inventory.” This essentially helps to increase demand. There are indeed people still looking to buy, meaning that you could still manage to sell your home during coronavirus for roughly the price you were hoping to get.
However, also bear in mind that tens of millions of Americans have lost their paycheck and don’t know when they’ll get it back. While we can’t technically say that we’re experiencing a recession (which can only be determined after at least six months of economic downturn), at the very least, some people are hurting financially.
The takeaway is that if nothing else, it definitely won’t hurt you to list your home for sale right now. Best case scenario, it sells. Worst case scenario, you have to wait until things start to blow over a little — if that.
Now, if you do choose to list your home, how can you tip the odds in your favor?
3 Quick Tips for Selling Your Home During COVID-19
1. Your Online Listing is Everything
In this digital age that we live in, online listings were already crucial when trying to sell your home, and coronavirus has only made this more extreme.
Social distancing and self-quarantining mean that potential buyers aren’t going to be strolling in and out of your home all day. They’re not going to get the full experience. So, you need to do your best to offer them that online.
This means flawless, beautiful, vibrant photos that showcase your home in its absolute best light. It means detailed listings that highlight the many amazing features your home offers. Finally, it means that virtual tours are your best friend.
And that brings us to our next point.
2. Virtual Tours Are Vital
Virtual tours supplement — or in this case — potentially replace in-person tours. If you skip this part, you’re taking away a huge piece of the home-shopping experience for your potential buyers.
It’s not as simple as walking through your home while recording it on your iPhone — although that’s certainly better than nothing.
Creating a virtual tour requires specific equipment and professional knowledge to capture, edit, and post. It’s an extra step, yes, but it’s what gets shoppers excited about your home and motivated to take the next steps.
3. Go Live
Images, videos, and virtual tours give people a good idea of what your home looks like. Understandably, though, they want to know what it looks like in person.
Because the quarantine has made the in-person experience more challenging, consider offering potential buyers the opportunity to do a live call through a platform like Zoom so that they can see your home in real-time. This is something that you or your real estate agent could manage.
Because it’s a little more time-intensive, it makes sense for this to happen only for more serious buyers. But the point is that during unprecedented times like this, we all have to think outside the box.
Selling your home during coronavirus is certainly possible when you work with the right real estate agent. The Brendan King Group continues to work with buyers and sellers during this difficult time. We've mastered the art of the online listing and even in the midst of a pandemic, we're prepared to do all that it takes to sell your home in a timely manner. Contact us today so we can get to know you better.