Research has shown that due to the coronavirus, open house events have been seriously harmed in a very serious way. A recent survey by the National Association of Realtors suggests that potential home buyers are more than ready to get back to visiting open houses. According to the report, approximately 65% of people who attended an open house over the past year would be more than happy to do it again without any hesitation.
Our country, as well as the real estate industry, has endured some of the most difficult times over the past year but there are now signs of improvement and we are all seriously hoping the worst is now behind us. According to Vincent Malta, the National Association of Realtors president, while we celebrate homeownership month, people are embracing homeownership and the path potential buyers are taking to reach their dreams. For potential buyers, the need to own a home is still very strong and the professionalism and experience of realtors are more important than ever before.
The survey found that almost half of buyers (47%) and sellers (53%) said that during the pandemic, relying on a real estate professionals when looking for or selling a home has become even more important. The majority of buyers and sellers said that guidance from a real estate agent is especially valuable. Also, nearly 59% of buyers and 58% of sellers believe that buying and selling real estate is an extremely important service.
Even though the rise in fighting the virus including virtual home tours to help keep buyers and sellers safe, approximately half of buyers surveyed said an agent can help them get more valuable information from online listings than they could possibly get on their own.
59% of buyers believe an agent can save them time and stress from weeding through online listings. Some buyers said they would stay on the side of caution and 15% are not comfortable attending an open house unless there is an approved COVID-19 vaccine or a proven medical protocol is in place to remedy the effects of the virus. 20% would be willing to resume going to an open house as long as there is a combination of local and national medical authorities present. Also, the location they visit has provided assurances that it’s safe to do so.
Besides protocols in place, a lot will depend on the comfort zones of buyers. The report offers important actions that real estate agents can do as they continue to navigate their responses to the pandemic. Steps for realtors:
• Can realtors help buyers and sellers get the most from online listings?
• Combine virtual tours with written information regarding home improvements.
• Make sure to include a tour of the neighborhood the house is in and/or nearby.
• Engage in the online search process with buyers.
• Make sure to limit the number of visitors at one given time.
• Make sure there are always plenty of wipes and sanitizers available.
• Remember that buyers and sellers might be litigation-prone.
• Understand the protocols and follow them. Do Not be afraid to enforce them.
• Stay in touch with your client and talk to them. Don’t just send them text messages and emails.