Buy, Sell or Wait? What’s Changing and Isn’t? Coronavirus and the Real Estate Market
Though we have made it through some highs and lows in the past, this unprecedented global health threat posed by coronavirus is unlike any other potential market disruption we’ve experienced before.
In this time of uncertainty, our clients and customers are asking a lot of questions. As your local resource for up to date market analysis, we want to try to address them the best we can while understanding, that the market is in constant flux.
First, know that William Raveis Vermont Properties top priority is the safety of our clients and team members. We are working diligently to stay informed and follow the latest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and World Health Organization recommendations.
We don’t yet know how long it will take to restore normal public health and return to everyday living. But we will get there by working together. And we will come out stronger.
All of us at William Raveis are working hard to assess the impact on the Okemo Valley real estate market. Unlike the financial markets, real estate data emerges over time.
Here’s what we do know:
- Buyers and sellers will still conduct business, but everything will happen much more slowly. Escrows might not close until Vermont’s shelter-in-place order is lifted and offices can reopen. Appraisal timelines will suffer as well. Anything that requires in-person out-of-the-house presence simply won’t happen until the end of April.
- Mortgage interest rates are at near historic lows and may go even lower.
- Today’s conditions are far different from those that led to the 2008 recession. Runaway lending led to the drop in housing prices then. It was a structural problem in real estate finance that has since been fixed.
- Historically, real estate is a good long-term investment and a hedge against inflation.
- Buying a house is not just an investment - it’s your home.
How is William Raveis VT Properties responding?
- Our No.1 priority is the health of our community. Following CDC recommendations, we are taking social distancing and sanitizing very, very seriously. We encourage everyone to stay safe and stay home.
- Pursuant to the shelter-in-place order issued by the Governor of Vermont, we have canceled all open houses and showings until the order is lifted. Disregard for the Executive Order is a violation of the Realtor® Code of Ethics.
- We are leveraging our digital platform and tools to enable buyers to tour properties with videos and virtual tours, like this.
- We are constantly analyzing market data and watching for significant shifts. Luckily, the first busy cycle, which starts in December, typically ends in mid-April so we have strong data from a healthy first few months. The second cycle starts mid-July so hopefully, we will see things settling down by then.
- We are planning to send regular updates to keep you informed as conditions change.
Thoughts for buyers:
- Tour virtually. We are making that possible.
- Review your down payment and available cash. You may want to shift your price point.
- Focus on finding the home that works for your family. Yes, price is important, but so are your housing needs.
Thoughts for sellers:
- You’ll probably be approached by bargain hunters, but remember that serious buyers are still shopping for homes.
- We are still getting inquiries from buyers that will be ready to buy once life is back to normal. We recommend you stay listed so you are ahead of the curve.
- It may take longer to sell your home as we make logistical changes in how we show your home.
- Expect some “Wait and Sees.”
- If you are in the midst of repairs and renovations to get your home ready to list, be aware that delivery of imported building supplies may take longer.
Thoughts for everyone:
Remember that home is where the heart is. It’s your sanctuary while we live with less contact with the rest of the world. Relish the home that shelters you and your family, and let that feeling be your guide as you make your real estate decisions.
We are here to help and listen. Call us at 802-228-8877 or email Info@vtprop.com with any questions or concerns. We’ll always tell you the truth, and we won’t pretend to know what we don’t know.
Our thoughts are with you as you work to protect your loved ones, neighbors, and friends.