The essentials of Real Estate in 2020
It feels like the real estate industry has been flipped on its head and all of the old rules have flown out the window. For consumers, what is real estate if not open houses, tours, and inspections? In the wake of social distancing and economic fragility, the way we do business has been utterly transformed. But there are always two sides to every coin, and it turns out that the way we do business is changing in a positive way.
Across many industries, consumers are taking more thoughtful and measured approaches to business and making decisions, and real estate is no different. With increased safety precautions in every facet of the sale— from the listing interview to the open houses, to inspections to settlement— the overall process has been slowed considerably. Because of this, transactions are becoming more deliberate and personalized than before. The quality of online listings, videos, and tours is paramount, as marketing new homes is almost exclusively virtual. And, the reconsideration of the overall buy/sell process also results in higher quality contracts, which means less stress and headache for buyers and sellers in the end. Additionally, it’s purified the process in some ways— all parties involved are much more serious. This change in the market has weeded out the tire-kicking buyers and instead left behind buyers who are seriously motivated and ready to buy. This is better for buyers as they must articulate their needs to be more specific about what they are looking for. As agents, we are better equipped to match buyers with homes that meet their particular needs. Sellers benefit too, as the interest in their homes is much more serious. Not only are “looky-loo” showings (those curiosity-fueled visits by those who aren’t actually in the market) a thing of the past, sellers can be assured that any visits made to their home are in earnest. Since we have been in a sellers’ market for so long, there was typically a feeding frenzy as soon as a house hit the market, often resulting in multiple-offer scenarios (which are frequently emotional, and not favorable to either side). Now people are being more practical in their approach, which has dampened the intensity. With each day that passes, there are always opportunities to find the silver linings in tough situations. In real estate and beyond, we are taking time to deeply consider what we have taken for granted as “normal,” and seizing opportunities to change the systems and processes that no longer serve everyone. The world is going through a lot of changes, but some of them are for the better.