The Affects of Social Distancing and COVID-19 on Real Estate

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So you want to sell your house and you’re curious about the affects of Social Distancing & COVID-19 on Real Estate.  This is such an important topic these days as we are living in unprecedented times as the “Corona Virus” Pandemic of 2020 has virtually shut down everything from schools to movie theaters and even churches.  We’ve never seen anything like this, so today I want to discuss some factors that may affect the sale of your house under these conditions.

Coronavirus COVID-19

FIRST, DON’T PANIC

The first thing to keep in mind is that this is not “normal” and things will resume once the government and medical agencies get control of the situation.  Currently the timeline is unspecified anywhere from a few weeks to a few months.  We are currently practicing the advised Social Distancing policy to protect against any further spread with the hopes of choking out the virus.  Don’t panic, remain calm.  Your house will sell.

 

SECOND, THIS IS GREAT FOR BUYERS

Prior to the virus, real estate markets across the country were working with very low inventory causing a flurry of buying activity and multiple offers.  Buyers were getting frustrated not being able to find the right house.  With a slight slowing of purchasing activity, Sellers have a great opportunity to get out in front of this new wave of home buyers who want a house.  Buyers have a HUGE opportunity to cash in on historically low mortgage rates in the 2 and 3% ranges making home buying more affordable now than they have ever seen.  The government is offering to invest several hundreds of billions into mortgage backed securities to stabilize the markets and keep mortgage rates low for a time.  This is not permanent.  

 

Some things Buyers should know about this.  First, Take advantage of the low rates and buy now while you can afford to before rates go back up.  Second, Buyers must keep in mind that this is not a time to make ridiculous fear based offers on real estate.  If you’re out in the market to buy, be realistic with sellers and maintain that you are making a great investment in your future and in your home.

 

THIRD, HOUSING INVENTORY IS LOW

Mr and Mrs Home Seller, housing inventory is still at incredibly low levels.  There are more buyers out in the market looking for homes than there are homes available for them to buy.  Mortgage rates are at all time lows, employment levels are at all time lows and wages have been increasing over the last several years.  People are wanting to buy homes.  This is a time when you should absolutely consider selling.  The best time to sell is when people are buying.  There are people buying.  

The big fear right now is that if people stop buying and the economy is disrupted, then home values will drop.  If that is the case, then this is absolutely the best time to Sell your house.  The old adage is right, Buy low and Sell High.  Well, the inventory has been historically low for so long and there are still signs of buying ahead.  For how long.  Mr. and Mrs. Seller if you’re thinking about it, then do it.  Years ago, a 30 year veteran told me the best time to sell a house is the day you do it.  Strike while the iron is hot.

 

FOURTH, MORTGAGE COMPANIES ARE BACKED UP

Currently, we are experiencing a back up happening in the mortgage world.  Appraisers, Title companies, Survey companies, and Underwriters are all consumed with refinance business that our lenders are recommending a 60 day contract and escrow period to allow enough time to get the deals processed through.  Mortgage business has nearly doubled in the last few weeks with homeowners wanting to cash in on lower rates with refinances.  That affects our closing times on sales as everyone is backed up to handle the volume.  Be prepared to wait on the closing.  Lenders will work to close early and the 60 days is not a lock, it is only an “ON OR BEFORE” closing date.  

 

FIFTH, WHAT ABOUT OPEN HOUSES AND MARKETING

This is a great question.  These days if your Realtor (r) is not utilizing cutting edge technology to keep your property in front of people online, then they are getting left behind with the sellers using them.  In my practice, we utilize cutting edge technology to make sure the open house is happening 24/7 online.  Then as people are practicing social distancing, they are able to only visit the homes they have a strong interest in viewing based on their virtual walk through.  This technology allows us to keep people from bringing any contamination into homes on a just looking front and keeps our Sellers safe as well as our Buyers.  What open houses look like has changed.  That’s ok, we are using it to our advantage.  

 

The Bottom line is that houses are still selling.  Buyers are still buying.  If you own a house in Albuquerque or Rio Rancho and have been thinking about listing it for sale, then call us for a professional FREE Market Study to evaluate the sale of your home.  Together we can all achieve so much more when we keep a level head and keep pushing forward with life.  We’re not going to let a little bug stop us in our tracks.  It may look different than it did yesterday, and those who adapt overcome.  Those who don’t get left behind.  

Be Safe and don’t be silly about how you are dealing with these times.  Just know that we are here and ready to help you sell, even in this time.

Coronavirus COVID-19

Our prayers are with everyone affected by this pandemic and we look forward to a great recovery in the short term.  We are staying focused on our desired outcomes and we’re leading our clients on the outcome of their choice.  

For more information on Selling your house, we are here to help.  505-250-1944.  With nearly 20 years of industry experience, I’ve seen a lot of different markets and this is new.  In a few months it will be yesterday’s news.  Let’s work together to reach your real estate goals.

Joshua Christensen | NMREC 47662 | 505-250-1944 | www.christensenproperties.com

 

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