How do I sell a home during this coronavirus environment?

Image credit McEnearney Associates

Question: How do I sell a home during this coronavirus environment?

Answer: In good times and bad, there are few things more important to us than the place we call home. In uncertain times deciding to buy or sell a home can create increased angst and pressure on the individual that can influence the local real estate market. People who are being transferred in or out of the area may feel the greatest anxiety.

The limited inventory of houses available will, most likely, become even more limited as owners “hunker down and self-quarantine.” Expect fewer in-person viewings as buyers and their agents follow CDC guidelines for physical interactions, but prepare for increased demand of virtual showings with enhanced video and 3-D floorplans.

However, while these are extraordinary times, many practices can remain the same with a bit of tweaking. Sellers who are anxious about selling during this coronavirus challenge may find a bit of solace and opportunity in The Shannon Group’s Home Seller’s 11 Helpful Hints for success in today’s complex and jittery residential markets.

11 Helpful Hints:

  1. Today more than ever, turn to trusted, local, experienced agents with a network of other agents who may be able to produce a timely purchaser, minimizing the home’s time on market.
  2. As in ordinary times, have the home professionally cleaned to maximize the cleanliness factor, appearance and overall value of your home.
  3. Ensure you have dozens of professional photos, videos and floor plans online to maximize social/traditional media exposure as physical viewing by the buyer may become more restricted.
  4. Virtual Open Houses have replaced public opens and savvy agents have been hosting live tours on social media to answer questions and highlight features a buyer would want to know if they were visiting the home themselves.
  5. Show the home by appointment only with your agent and stagger showings by three hours.
  6. Provide hand sanitizers and/or cleansing wipes as a considerate and practical act.
  7. Remember, people who need to buy a house, still, need to buy a house and will most likely appreciate your consideration towards virus mitigation in spite of some inconvenience in scheduling.
  8. In uncertain times, working with a real estate group/team provides additional team members to show your home to prospective purchasers throughout the week and can accommodate just about any owner’s and buyer’s scheduling needs.
  9. Seek experienced agent with years of in-depth neighborhood and local housing knowledge who have expertise in producing successful home valuations over the decades of changing markets.
  10. Even if for just a few days, market your home in “Coming Soon” status to generate local agent/neighborhood/social media buzz. This enables you to get the word out to the market while you are finalizing your preparations.
  11. Find the local listing agent who provides you honest and concise analysis on whether “to sell, buy OR stay put” — good advice is a soothing elixir in troubled times.

Remember, people who needed to buy a house before the virus outbreak, still need to buy a house and will appreciate your efforts to make your home available to them through enhanced digital methods as well as safe practices for all.

Joan Shannon, McEnearney Associates blog

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