The coronavirus continues to be a source of concern across the world; however, the silver lining is becoming more apparent. According to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) latest Economic Pulse Flash Survey, while the spread of COVID-19 is still impacting the markets, sellers remain calm and hopeful.
Nearly three in four REALTORS® are working with sellers right now, and of those, 74 percent said their clients have not reduced listing prices in order to attract buyers.
And it’s not just sellers who are proceeding as normal. Twenty-seven percent of surveyed REALTORS® have been able to complete nearly all transaction processes while practicing social distancing. For future clients, the most used tech tools are social media (61 percent), live videos (34 percent), messaging apps (38 percent) and e-signature programs (33 percent). There is a significant group, however, 40 percent, who say some aspects of the transaction still require person-to-person interactions; though masks and gloves are being used to lessen the risk of spreading the virus.
In the rental segment? Sixty-one percent of landlords and 37 percent of property managers report no issues in collecting rents. For those who are experiencing delays, 24 percent of landlords and 47 percent of property managers have been flexible under the circumstances. A very small portion of leases are being terminated—by 4 percent of landlords and 6 percent of property managers.
On the flip side, there has been a decrease in buyer interest, cited by 87 percent of members. Forty percent said the interest has declined by more than 50 percent. But this is most likely temporary—44 percent said buyers are delaying the process for just a couple of months. And while current sellers are not changing their listing prices, 55 percent of members said their seller clients are also postponing their real estate needs for a couple of months.
“Consumers are mostly abiding by stay-in-shelter directives, and it appears the current decline in buyer and seller activity is only temporary, with a majority ready to hit the market in a couple of months,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “The housing market faced an inventory shortage before the pandemic. Given that there are even fewer new listings during the pandemic, home sellers are taking a calm approach and appear unwilling to lower prices to attract buyers during the temporary disruptions to the economy.”
The biggest change to the entire selling process? No more open houses, which 71 percent of surveyed members reported. Next, 63 percent said buyers are simply taking precautions when entering a home by using hand sanitizer, washing their hands, using gloves, using shoe covers or wearing masks.
Of those surveyed, 77 percent are working in a local market with presumed or confirmed cases of COVID-19.
For more information, please visit www.nar.realtor.
Liz Dominguez is RISMedia’s senior online editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have had several hundred cases of infections, but not sure of anyone passing away. However, I did see an open house scheduled last Sunday and I am not sure why? I guess they are following and making their own rules even though legally we are not supposed to show or do open houses in NYS. Realistically, what percentage of purchasers will buy based on a 3D Virtual tour? Governor Cuomo should allow us to accompany home inspectors and the buyer so in this fashion, they can really check the home out while the inspector does his job for 1-2 hrs. Also, just the agent would open everything up w/o anyone else touching anything. Most important everyone entering the home would have to wear protective masks, gloves and carry disinfectant wipes! This will provide a lot more time than normal before the buyer signs the contract and if what they see in person doesn’t meet their expectations compared to the 3D VT that they had seen online, then they have the option of not signing the contract and going forward with the sale. Has this possibility been brought up to NYSAR and REBNY and provided to Gov. Cuomo. The majority of agents would most likely be prepared and do the right thing. However, without this option, how can we present this plan to our sellers, investors or buyers and no that it would be legal to perform this way?
I have been informed that the NYSDOS has been issuing fines to firms and individuals who violate the NY Pause order, specifically in person open houses are forbidden. The DOS is issuing fines based on complaints and submitted photographs.
More sellers are opting for a pre sales home inspection. They then fix some issues, obtain an updated inspection report and share it with prospective buyers