The COVID-19 pandemic has created uncertainty around a number of everyday activities. When you are considering a major life event such as selling your home and moving to a new home, you probably have questions about whether and how it can be done. The good news is that you can move during the pandemic, to take advantage of a new opportunity or for a better location for your family. Your move will be made a bit easier when you know how to sell your home during COVID-19.
Houses are Selling
Yes, houses are still selling because people are still moving for various reasons. Even during the pandemic, people are taking new jobs or relocating to be closer to family. Although the market was a bit slower in the spring, when the pandemic closed down businesses and kept people at home, it is now rebounding at a healthy pace.
In fact, existing home sales rebounded at a record pace in June. A majority of homes sold, 62%, were on the market for less than a month. Properties typically remained on the market for 24 days in June, a significant decrease from 26 days in May and from 27 days in June 2019. Home sales increased in every region across the country. In addition, median home prices increased over last year’s.
Low Inventory, High Prices
Most real estate experts expect home prices to increase in 2020, even with the pandemic. Homes that buyers want are in short supply and new home starts aren’t sufficient to keep up with the demand. Real estate agents are searching for homes to list as they typically have more potential buyers than sellers. With the increased demand comes higher prices.
The experts do advise, though, that when you are ready to sell your home during COVID-19, you should not overprice it based on this information. It is very possible to overprice a property and that will scare away buyers. If there is no movement on a property within a certain amount of time, it then gives potential buyers the impression that something is wrong with it. Buyers and their agent can also run a comparative analysis of what the home should sell for, given recent activity in the neighborhood.
Potential home sellers are being advised to err on the low side of price. In a competitive market, there may be multiple bids on an available home. A home buyer will probably offer at least the asking price, if not more, to secure the property.
Buyers are Better Qualified
The pandemic has also brought on a recession, with more people out of work because of COVID-19. In a recession, banks and other lending institutions tend to tighten their requirements for a mortgage loan. The good news in regard to selling a home is that the potential buyers will be better qualified so there is less opportunity for something to fall through at the last minute, just before closing.
Interest rates are also at historic lows now. Currently, mortgage rates are at 2.88% for a fixed rate, 30-year loan and 2.38% for a fixed rate, 15-year loan. An FHA fixed rate 30-year loan is at 2.25%. These interest rates are very attractive to home buyers.
When preparing to sell your home during COVID-19, you should take all the precautions you can to ensure it is a safe experience for everyone. If at all possible, move out so your agent can show the home with minimal human contact. Sanitize everything and speak with your agent about sanitizing surface areas after each showing.
Have your real estate agent only show your home in person by appointment. Those appointments should be limited to pre-qualified buyers. You can ask for a pre-approval letter issued by the buyer’s lending agency. Knowing that potential buyers meet a bank’s qualifications and are seriously in the market will eliminate the possibility of showing your home to curiosity seekers.
Lay down rules for visitors to your home, such as requiring masks and shoe coverings, and provide hand sanitizer and wipes for them to use as they enter. Home buyers should not object, given the current situation, and will appreciate your efforts to keep everyone safe and healthy.
A safe alternative to in-person showings is the virtual tour. Real estate agents are using 3-D technology to give a virtual reality feel to a remote showing. They are also conducting individual live virtual tours. The agent will walk through your house with a smartphone or tablet camera and encourage potential buyers to ask questions in real time.
Ready to Sell Your House and Plan Your Move?
When you’re ready to sell your home and move to a new home in the Nashville area or across the country, we’re ready to help. We are prepared to take every precaution necessary to maintain your safety and well-being throughout the process. Contact us for more information about your next move. Call Fox Moving & Storage Nashville at 615-965-5640 to learn more about our services and to get a free quote.