It’s a challenge for everyone around the world these days to be going out and doing activities that used to be simple and even hassle-free. Pre-covid if you are interested to see a house on the market, you only need to hop in your car and drive to where the house is. Today, to do that, you’d have to check what the state and local government say about real estate home showings.
The local governments all over the United States have identified essential real estate services. To this day, COVID-19 has yet to cease its attack on human health which results in a continuing impact on the world’s economic health. The guidelines set are varying and some may still be obscure. But one thing is certain, real estate consumers must prioritize their health first before anything else. Denver experts have some tips on how to do safe and legal home showings in the midst of COVID-19.
Listen in as Real Estate Consumers Specialists, Barry and Larry of the B&L Consumers Real Estate Radio Show exchange expert thoughts during a live podcast aired on April 18, 2020:
How To Safely and Legally Do Home Showings:
As of August 2020, Zillow reports the median price for a single-detached home in Colorado at $471,000 and in Colorado Springs at $339,000. Other sources put the November median prices as over $530,000 in Denver, and now over $400,000 in Colorado Springs. Barry and Larry agree that the Colorado Front range market is staying competitive. With that said, they encourage buyers to take a look at opportunities for buying a house during this time.
Below are some of their home buying tips and recommendations to buyers who can’t forego a home showing:
- Create contingency provisions within the contract. A buyer may put a property under contract and not be pressured to close especially when the contingencies stipulated are not met. A good buyer agent will be able to draw up a contingent contract that will maximize your rights and protection as a buyer, such as adding “subject to clauses”. However, in a strong seller’s market with multiple offers, and with an appropriately priced home, the seller may choose another bid that has no contingencies.
- Take advantage of the home inspections. Virtual tours are among the most popular platforms to showcase properties for sale. Amateur videos may not be ideal but remember that when the video tour does not give you enough reality of what the house is like, be sure to arrange with your agent to personally visit and/or go along on the showing appointment.
- Make showing appointments with the sellers. Visit the properties when it’s empty or when the sellers are away on errands or vacation. The key is to arrange a good day to visit the property for everyone’s safety.
- Rely on online and technology tools to check out the property. Compared to when the pandemic started in March, most realtors have now adjusted to the demand of providing virtual services which include professional photos and video recordings of the property. Some may have even invested in drones for aerial shots and live video sharing.
- Always exercise sound judgment. Follow the strict guidelines and search for safe and legal ways to exercise your rights as a buyer. Your safety is still the top priority. Also, exercise the mantra, “Only buy or sell when you have analyzed the benefits to you.”
Recent Statistics on COVID-19 Impact
The Research Group of the National Association of Realtors recently conducted a flash survey. It shows how the real estate economy is behaving and how it adapts to the changes brought about by COVID-19. In April 2020, 44% of buyers decided to delay their plans, 22% stopped due to job loss and uncertainty, and only 10% remained in the process. However recent reports no longer indicate that much impact on buyers. People, in general, realized the virus won’t be gone anytime soon and decided to move on with halted plans.
Kathleen Chiras, owner/CEO of the National Buyer Agents Association, compared the number of inquiries her association received for the first quarter of 2019 to the first quarter of 2020. She found that they’re the same in number. But a closer look at the database revealed that inquiries decreased by 27% for March – April 2020 compared to March-April 2019. But the statistics have changed recently. See our other blog showing the increase in buyers agents’ requests. The inquiries went back up again a couple of weeks before the month of May ended, and there continues to be strong market activity into the late fall of 2020.
“NAR conducted a flash survey of members on the impact of the coronavirus on their market. The survey was delivered to a random sample of 89,813 members. Twenty-seven percent of members were able to complete nearly all aspects of transactions while respecting the social distance. With minor modifications such as using masks and gloves, 40 percent felt person-to-person interactions were still required.”-NAR
Real Estate Safe Home Showing Online Tools and Apps
During the podcast, Barry stated that the use of technology has become the new norm in conducting real estate transactions. Where we are is a period of adjustment, still finding out what works and what doesn’t. It may still be too early to tell, but definitely, some of the current practices may continue even after the world is declared COVID-19 free. One of them is telecommuting. Realtors all over the US have responded to this recommendation as part of the solution. As a matter of fact, NAR lists the following technology tools that realtors are currently using to communicate with their buyers or sellers:
- Live Videos
- Social Media
- E-Closing Technology
- Virtual Tours
- Messaging Apps
Contact Your buyer’s agent Now!
One of the critical first steps in the home buying process is hiring the right agent to help ease you through the process. You can do your research and preparation with the help of professionals who can guide you every step of the way.
Start your journey right and get top-rate fiduciary agent recommendations from the Colorado buyer’s agent Association! Fill out our online form or call 303-671-1629 to talk with any of the staff or Kathleen Chiras, the association manager. The association provides assistance any time of the week from Monday to Sunday.