As Realtors and local business owners, we are in a unique position to share with you how the COVID-19 pandemic and the Shelter In Place is affecting the East Bay market. At Arrive Real Estate Group, we are constantly watching the market data and listening to as many industry calls as possible. Some of us have definitely hit a Zoom maximum capacity! Anyone else???
Real Estate is considered essential in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties, but with very strict restrictions. First, we are not able to show listings that are occupied. We can show vacant properties, but it can only be the Realtor and 2 adults who reside in the same home. When showing vacant properties to clients, we show up early with gloves, mask and Clorox wipes to wipe down all the door handles and open as many doors and windows as possible. We do this again after the showing. There are many “work arounds” to these restrictions as people are listing homes as “vacant” and then offering a “no-contact showing” where the seller leaves for a couple hours. Please use caution in these situations.
For our Sellers, almost everything is virtual now. We drive by the home to assess location and then do a virtual walkthrough to determine value. We are also counseling sellers on what they can do now to prepare for when the SIP is lifted. However, if desired, we can list occupied homes now. Arrive Real Estate Group can coordinate any necessary repairs or improvements as well as schedule professional photography, virtual staging and marketing. Remember, there are Buyers who still want/need to buy and Sellers who still need/want to sell. If you do, call us and let’s discuss how to get creative and have a little fun with preparing your home!
Let’s talk about the economy….well sort of. We are not economists but are reading the news and know that we have a record number of unemployment filings and small businesses that are in dire need of support. We also know that going into this pandemic Americans had more equity in their homes than ever before and the percentage of Americans who were in the foreclosure process was under 4%. We will not see a flood of bank-owned properties hit the market as a result of this. Similar to 2008, it is expected that we will not be hit nearly as hard here in the East Bay as other parts of California or the nation as a whole.
We still have a shortage of housing and therefore, Sellers will still be in a position to receive great offers on their homes. This is especially true for the homes that have been well maintained and offer something special (proximity to community structure, views, schools, remodeled kitchen, open concept, outdoor living etc), they will still sell very fast.
We were at the cusp of our local Spring Market before COVID-19 hit. Almost 90% of the homes that have been “withdrawn” post in the comments that they are coming back on the market in May or June. Our Spring Market is just delayed and will be shifting from March/April to May/June. Sellers are prepping and buyers are waiting…still actively looking online and hoping “the one” pops up.
So…if you have found yourself in a situation where life has changed, your work from home situation has changed or you are finally ready to talk about selling/buying, what can you do? Do your homework. Analyze the data. Prepare now. We are available to you, your friends and family. We care deeply about our clients and our communities. We will continue to offer the same thorough, wise and focused care as always.
Be well and be in touch.