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Buying and Selling: Real Estate in the Age of Social Distancing

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Deciding whether to make a move in the real estate market is always a difficult decision to navigate. Real estate as an industry is an interpersonal experience with frequent up-close interactions with each transaction. Before the pandemic, it was commonplace to drive together from property to property while stopping for lunch or a snack to rank your preferences and discuss the features of listings.

In the age of social distancing, the variables of the real estate journey compounded for some homeowners and potential buyers. Prior to the pandemic, many real estate services engaged buyers and sellers through the assistance of technology, but heavily relied on face-to-face, social interaction to navigate the process. With the current state of things, real estate professionals are working to alleviate consumer concerns about health and safety by customizing socially distanced experiences to meet client’s preferences.

Our tips for navigating the new normal in the real estate industry begin with choosing an agent who aligns with your health and safety priorities. Your choice of real estate representation is often influenced by personal referrals or professional networks. Referral is a great place to start, but it is important to get to know the agent for yourself.

Here are some considerations when determining how to proceed with your next real estate move:

Make health and safety a priority

  • In your initial conversations with potential agents, convey any health concerns or risk factors making you particularly vulnerable and requiring special accommodations. Requesting the use of masks and other PPE during meetings, tours, and other interactions is easily accommodated. Setting the groundwork for your accommodations early on may avoid uncomfortable interactions later.

Prep your property for the competitive market

  • When listing your property for sale there are often preparations or small home improvement projects to increase your chances of getting a top dollar bid. First, consult with your agent before investing time and money into improvements. Some improvements impacting the selling price and potential than others. Second, if you need to hire a contractor or handyman for the job, ask for a referral. Real estate agents often have a network of reliable resources to refer you to.

Equip yourself with technology for quick action

  • There are a handful of technologies you should train up on to make quick and decisive action, and your agent should be equipped as well. Visit your potential agent’s website to ensure that it is user-friendly and a good resource to review current listings. Learn to use a video conferencing platform like Zoom or Google Meet for interactions and video property showings. Become familiar with electronic signature platforms like HelloSign, DocuSign, and Adobe Sign. You will not need an account for the electronic signature platforms, only a cursory understanding of the functionality and security.

Curb appeal has always been social distanced

  • First impressions are lasting impressions and this applies as much to real estate as it does to people. That is why curb appeal has one of the greatest impacts on the marketability of your property. It may be even more important now in the age of social distancing as buyers are doing a lot drive by shopping to narrow their options. Taking the time to spruce up your street view of your home for drive by shoppers and for the photos buyers will peruse online is worth your time and effort.

The state of the pandemic has been difficult to navigate for everyone, but it doesn’t have to be a deal breaker for your buying plans. There are plenty of ways to navigate this market safely. 360 Real Estate Services takes your health and safety seriously and prioritizes your needs and concerns while we help you discover your new dream home.

For more guidance on current market trends, contact me for a free consultation. I can walk you through the latest strategies and you can share your real estate plans. Together, we can come up with a plan that works for you.

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