The COVID-19 pandemic was a significant disruption to the ways of life for people across the globe. Changes have been felt in every corner of life, including work, school, travel, family, friends, and living situations. With the health emergency forcing people to spend more time at home, many began to reconsider whether they were happy in the place they live, and whether it was suitable for living and for work. The sector most involved in the rethinking of living spaces is, of course, the real estate industry. Real estate constitutes a major share of GDP for many countries; here in the US, spending within the housing market constituted 17.5% of GDP in 2020. The housing market has had quite the run during 2020 and 2021, with much debate about whether to call it a “bubble” and speculation on when it might burst. Despite the continued strength of the market, there have been low points; in April-May 2020, nationwide home sales fell to their lowest point since 2007, and some metro areas experienced decreased residential sales throughout the peaks of the pandemic, but sales then recovered in the ensuing summer months.
Looking back at the housing market activity throughout the duration of COVID-19 can teach us valuable lessons about selling a house during a pandemic. We will use these lessons to guide our behavior moving forward, and to be more prepared if a similar situation arises in the future.
Here’s 5 important lessons learned about selling your house during a pandemic:
Lesson 1: Quality Photography and Virtual Viewing Are Essential
At a time when house buyers are not able to come view properties in person, it is imperative that you provide a great collection of photos of your home. As always, de-personalize the space by removing all personal belongings, stage the space as you see fit, and let prospective clients imagine how they can customize it to their own tastes. High quality photos will allow for effective communication of the qualities of the home that you want to highlight.
A small upside of the pandemic is the opportunity to take advantage of new technologies. Virtual tours have become increasingly popular in recent years- even before COVID- but during the pandemic they provided buyers with an immersive, comprehensive touring experience, without ever having to show up at the house. This is of course a huge strength when trying to adhere to health safety protocols, but the benefits of virtual touring extend beyond pandemic-related reasons. For example, buyers from out of town, or even anywhere in the world, can view the home with ease, expanding your reach and increasing the likelihood of making the sale.
Lesson 2: Cleanliness is King
This goes without saying: during a public health crisis, the perceived cleanliness and health safety of a home you intend to sell are paramount. Cleaning is always a part of the home selling process, but during a pandemic, extra steps will need to be taken for your potential buyers to feel comfortable and safe in the home. Deep clean, disinfect, and repeat as often as necessary so that the home feels hygienic, both in person for showings and virtually by way of photographs and virtual tours. Many companies who provide cleaning and staging services modified their services appropriately during the pandemic, so if you don’t want to take on the cleaning yourself, check out your local businesses that provide these services.
Lesson 3: Make the Paperwork Process Easy
If you want to sell your house quickly during a pandemic, then make sure all of the relevant paperwork is in order as soon as possible. The more organized you are when a potential buyer becomes interested, the smoother the whole process will be, with less chance of them adding conditions or slowing things down.
Besides simply being organized with the documentation that’s required for each step of the process, another important way to make things go smoother is by utilizing e-signing services. These are secure websites that allow parties to sign fully legitimate, legally-binding contracts and other documents completely online. Typically, the selling parties (seller/agent) must be physically present with the buying parties in order to sign documents and complete paperwork. This is no longer the case, as parties can sign remotely and at their own convenience using e-signing services. This simple tool will help expedite the selling process, and create a pleasant and convenient experience for all involved.
Lesson 4: Advertise Appropriately
What’s the number one way people access information — especially while spending a lot of time at home? It’s the tool you’re using to read this article: the Internet. You can take advantage of the time people spend on Google and social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok, and more by running custom-tailored advertising. In general, ads should be highly targeted in order to capture the attention of your ideal customer, at a time when they are seeking out your services. In our case, we want to identify the people who are ready to buy a house, who have the financial means to buy at our price point, and who are in or nearby our geographic area, as a few examples. Crucial steps include identifying the platform most used by your target audience, crafting messages that speak to that audience appropriately, and optimizing your campaigns so that the ads are shown to the right people.
Lesson 5: Communicate With Investment Groups and Real Estate Agents
Real estate investment groups and agents are typically the go-to for quick and easy house sales. During COVID-19, most have adjusted operations in order to accommodate the new situation so that we can still work with you, even if your home is on lockdown. It’s never a bad idea to explore your options when selling your home; some people prefer to work with agents, while others like working with investors or other parties, so do some searching and figure out the best fit for you.
In a time of crisis, it can be difficult to make decisions. But when you know the facts and have an expert team behind you, selling your home during the pandemic is possible. Our goal at 321 House Buyers is to help you sell your home with ease, exactly when you need it. With a nationwide network of buyers looking for homes at virtually every price range, location and condition, we’re confident that there’s someone waiting for your property.
If you or someone you know needs to get rid of their property fast in Brevard County Florida or surrounding areas, contact us today. We will meet with you for a no obligation consultation and set you on the right path forward, pandemic or not!