Covid-19 has affected not only real estate but most industries globally. At the beginning of the pandemic, quarantines and lockdowns were implemented to control the spread of the coronavirus. Businesses were given limitations to operate as precautions. Worse is, some were even forced to shut down. The pandemic is not only related to the health sector, it also brings up changes that may affect all sectors and professions.
The real estate industry is categorized as one of the leading business industries. Real estate companies are being impacted in different ways. Though the pandemic has a massive negative effect on the real estate industry, it also opened opportunities for buyers. The government enacted important regulations aimed at issuing low-interest rates and long-term housing loans as a solution regarding economic surplus and burdens caused by the pandemic.
The New Normal in the Real Estate Industry
Though health experts are trying to come up with solutions in trying to control the health crisis, we may be transitioning to a “new normal” life. Many industries have successfully changed the way they run business and how they transact.
Do people still look for properties to buy? Yes! Housing prices are dropping. Interest rates are incredibly low and it is an opportunity for potential buyers to buy. In fact, according to floridatrend.com, Florida’s rural real estate is booming amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Despite the financial impact of COVID-19, the real estate market in the United States is still “hot”. According to Realtor.com, “Median listing prices grew 9.9 percent due to combination of eager buyers, low mortgage rates, and reduced inventory; Total inventory is down 36 percent, which further proves the reduced availability of houses and increase of motivated, active buyers, despite the pandemic.”
Keeping your Real Estate Business Running During COVID-19
Homebuyers search online for properties. This isn’t new but this time of crisis, homebuyers use the internet in their home-searching process more than ever. And, as a real estate agent, you must come up with more effective digital marketing plans to reach out and convince these potential buyers.
A global study into consumer attitudes, media habits, and expectations during the COVID-19 pandemic conducted by kantar.com says: Web browsing increased by 70 percent, traditional TV viewing by 63 percent, and social media engagement by 63 percent compared to normal usage rates.
Build your online presence
The majority of homebuyers use the internet when searching for properties to buy. Having a real estate property website will help you build your online presence. In fact, developing a website is the most used real estate marketing strategy that successful real estate agents follow. A real estate property website is the best place on the internet to showcase your listings, services, and helpful blogs.
Share your contact information on your online pages and you should keep your lines of communication open at most times. Always prepare yourself to answer questions and inquiries from potential homebuyers.
Provide real estate 360 virtual tours
Including a 360 virtual tour on your website will not only make your site look cool but will also allow potential buyers to look at your listing more effectively. Since open houses are limited because of the pandemic, virtual tours became very useful in showing properties. It lets potential buyers look at a property through virtual reality. This way, homebuyers can feel how it’s like to live in the property without physically stepping into the house.
Important safety precautions during physical property showings, open houses, and inspections by orlandorealtors.com:
- Driving separately to showings
- Having all parties wash hands and/or use hand sanitizer before and after entering a home
- Asking buyers to avoid touching anything in the home
- Asking buyers to wear shoe covers or booties
- Canceling showings if buyers or sellers are sick
- Opening all interior doors before showings to minimize the need for buyers to touch door handles
- Opening exterior windows and doors for ventilation
- Turning on all lights before showings to prevent touching light switches
- Disinfecting all door handles and high‐touch areas before and after showings
- Having all parties stand six feet away from each other during showings
Creative and powerful marketing tools
Your online first impression matters! Digital marketing is a long-term strategy. Using professional real estate photos for your listings will sure impress home seekers. Even though house prices are dropping, people still prefer to see beautiful images of a house rather than poor-quality images. Professional real estate photography has proven its worth and effectiveness in helping real estate agents in selling homes. Including professional real estate photos and videos with your marketing plans will guarantee you a faster return.
Do not give up
Running a real estate business during this health and economic crisis can be hard. Instead of giving up, take time to improve your business plan and expand your knowledge. keep updated on the state’s guidelines, stay informed so you can set the proper expectation for your clients.
The pandemic has altered much of our life. COVID-19 did not only threatened human heath but also left a significant effect on global finance and economic crisis. Most industries have changed the way they operate and transact to cope with the effects of the pandemic. In real estate even during COVID-19, people will still sell their homes and people still buy homes. When you pivot your strategies and workflow, you will recover and increase your real estate business while offering your clients an exceptional experience.
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