Did COVID-19 put your house selling plans on hold?
By Kathryn Dean
Did COVID-19 put your house selling plans on hold?
While the COVID-19 pandemic has temporarily altered the way Australians buy and sell property, it hasn’t put a stop to it altogether. But is now a good time to sell your property? Let’s break it down.
How many people are still house hunting?
Property data and analytical provider, CoreLogic, has reported a slowdown in the housing market activity in the past month as unemployment rates continue to rise. A survey conducted by CoreLogic found that buyer enquiry has fallen 50 per cent in some areas across Australia, due to falling buyer confidence and the rising unemployment rate.
Recent discussions I’ve had with other members of the real estate industry including an account manager from realestate.com.au, confirms that houses around Adelaide are still selling, but buyer enquiry has reduced significantly, as has new listings being advertised for sale. Some houses are still selling quickly and above the expected price range, while other houses are taking longer to sell and needing to reduce prices.
Interest rates are very low, first home buyers can access loans with less deposit thanks to the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme, many people are still in secure jobs and government grants are helping a lot of others through. Buyers are still looking and still buying, although numbers have dropped.
How quickly does the housing market react to a crisis?
While the share market has been negatively affected by the pandemic, it doesn’t mean the property market will be hit as bad. The share market is forward looking and tends to drop quickly when there is a crisis, however the property market moves at a different speed and will often take longer to react to a crisis because the property market is mostly made up of home buyers and not investors.
The Australian property market fared well during some past economic shocks but there is no clear cut evidence of how it will perform during the COVID-19 pandemic. What is evident now is that property transactions have dropped. Experts are commenting that this is a short-term event and that even if house prices fall, it will bounce back soon. In fact, I saw on the Morning Show today that South Australia is currently preparing to start lifting restrictions on 21st May 2020, if all continues to go well. That's just three weeks away!
What are some positives of selling now?
With many vendors putting their selling plans on hold to wait out the pandemic, there will be less stock available for the buyers still looking, which could mean more competition and a high sale price if your property is in a high demand suburb or price range.
The costs involved with selling could also be reduced, with a number of suppliers advertising reduced prices or extra benefits for the duration of the restrictions. Styling for example.... Investing in styling for sale is a must nowdays, if you want to a achieve a quick sale and the best price possible. Some styling companies are currently offering discounted rates or extended hire periods during the current ban on open homes.
Some online marketing platforms such as realestate.com.au have also announced added benefits for new residential listings published during the pandemic.
What COVID-19 restrictions do I need to consider when selling?
With a ban on mass open homes, buyers are relying on virtual and private inspections. You can expect agents to suggest you invest in professional videography, or at the very least the agent will film your property and possibly conduct online meetings from your property. If there are private inspections of your home, we’ll ensure prospective buyers keep their hands in their pockets and avoid touching surfaces in your home. However, you should always disinfect your property following an inspection.
Although we’re still able to hold a private inspection of your property, in some cases it can be difficult for people to leave their home for the inspection. We can try to coordinate any private inspections with your legitimate reasons for leaving the house, such as shopping for essentials, working or exercising. You will not be able to leave home if you are in mandatory isolation.
While on-site auctions are also banned, you can still sell through an online auction if this is the preferred method of sale.
Still prefer to wait? Here's what you should be doing now.
Depending on the location of your property and the demand in your area, selling during the COVID-19 pandemic might be favourable for you. If however, you’re not in a position that you need to sell now, you may prefer to wait COVID-19 restrictions out.
For those deciding to wait, I highly recommend you consider starting sale preparations now, to beat the rush of properties being listed for sale once restrictions lift and the market picks up again. With talk already beginning on the lifting of restrictions, if you get started now with cleaning, maintenance, styling and choosing your real estate agent, you could be ready to list while there is still a short supply of houses on offer.
Speak to us today about putting your property on the market and preparing for sale advice. Be ready and beat the rush of houses hitting the market for sale!
Director / Principal
Dean Family Real Estate
Phone: 0414 838 405