How to Prepare for This Home Buying Season

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As we get ready for the warmer weather, the home buying market will likely stay hot.

It may go without saying but, buying a home during COVID-19 has changed the way many of the typical processes go including touring a home, virtual signings, and more. Staying up to date and knowing what to expect when buying a home during a pandemic is vital to make sure there are no bumps in the road.

Sight unseen purchases will likely keep happening because buyers are for the most part, forced to make quick and on the spot decisions about their potential new home. The market is so hot right now where the only way some buyers have seen their house before making an offer is through virtual tours and photos.

Sight unseen purchases are much easier nowadays with the ability to have the detailed photos and 3D renderings than in the past. These types of purchases are usually risky for the most part but to ensure that nothing is wrong with the place that can’t be seen in photos, hire a home inspector and get a home appraisal.

Although you may be able to tour a home in person, virtual home tours will still remain available. Drone shots of the property and 3D walk through layouts are still going to be very popular throughout this home buying season because it allows ways for people to explore the home at anytime from anywhere.

With virtual home tours continuing, in person tours will most likely remain by appointment only to not only keep contact down, but to merely weed out the curious people who are not serious about buying the home and just want to simply explore. This will help real estate agents and potential buyers know who is potentially planning on putting in an offer and if it is going to end in a bidding war or not.

Even though in person home tours are available, try to limit contact as much as possible and limit being in person to the homes that you are serious about.

Although there seems to be a light at the end of a very dark tunnel in the real world and real estate world, many of the new steps and processes are very likely to stay. COVID-19 has taught everyone that technology has adapted to every way of life and if it makes an older process much easier, then you should adapt it permanently.

What Will Crash First, Sales or Prices?

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As the competitive seller’s market continues and mortgage rates begin to rise, will the number of homes available keep up or will people decide to put off selling?

Fannie Mae predicts there will be a slowdown in the monthly pace of both existing and new sales later in the year. In the 2021 GDP forecast posted by Mae, the GDP is now 6.8 percent, up from a prior 6.6 percent.

We began the year with a strong housing demand with everyone wanting to buy due to low mortgage rates but as the year goes on, the hope of the housing supply catching up, is dwindling down. The hopes of people being able to buy their dream home within their budget is also dwindling down. As soon as houses enter the market, multiple offers come in and more often than not, a bidding war will happen which might push people over the top of their budget.

Not only are people spending more than their budget, but house prices are also increasing at an alarming rate so you might be paying more for a house than it normally would go for and then adding the bidding war on top of that.

With that, potential home buyers are holding off on buying a home because of these unstable market conditions. Because people are deciding to hold off on selling, less and less houses are becoming available to buy. This is also leading buyers to become frustrated.

But, with predictions of more millennials planning on buying homes in 2021, the housing demand should stay strong. In a number of ways, buying is more cost effective than renting which is attracting new millennial home buyers in this market. Unfortunately, with the shortage of homes available, millennials are causing the U.S. to run out of homes.

Even though mortgage rates are beginning to rise, they will remain on a friendly level through the rest of 2021 allowing buyers to still be comfortable and maintain the strong housing demand.

How to Guide Buyers in a Competitive Seller’s Market

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Navigating a seller’s market with your clients can be difficult especially when the market is very competitive like it is now.

Home prices continue to be on the rise and inventories are still lagging behind. Mortgages rates are starting to creep up, but they still remain low.

In a seller’s market with houses going on the market and coming off so quickly, you might want to help your client’s change their expectations a little bit. They might not find their exact dream home with everything checked off on their list but, they can still find what they are looking for if you help them set what is truly needed and what is wanted. Talking to your clients about what can be changed and what can’t be is extremely important in these market conditions. Lot size and location cannot be changed but features like the carpet and light fixtures can be.

When showing houses to your clients, try to stay below the top of their budget. In competitive market atmosphere’s, there will be multiple offers on homes which might turn into a bidding war. Your clients might end up well over the top of their budget if this happens. If you show a house in the lower or middle end of their budget, there will be more room for them to bid if a bidding war does happen.

In a competitive seller’s market, situations may happen a lot faster than what is ideal. Make sure your clients know they can trust you if they have to put in an offer sight unseen or within an hour or two of even touring the home. The more they trust you, the more they will be willing to move at a faster pace. Complete research on all the homes you are going to recommend your clients see so that way you can answer any questions they may have.

It may be beneficial to build relationships with certain people in different communities so that you have an “in” when a house enters the market. The more professional relationships, the better for you and your clients.

It may go without saying but stay on top of your research. Houses are coming and going at a record speed so make sure you stay on top of what houses enter the market that fit into your client’s wants and needs. Provide the information the moment you receive it so your clients can have the best chance at getting the house they want.

Guide them in making the right decisions during these tough market conditions. Find the right balance between guiding them but still allowing them to put their input and opinions in on what they truly want and need.

 

 

 

Eviction Moratorium Extended Through June 30, 2021

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The nationwide eviction moratorium to halt evictions to slow down the spread of COVID-19 has been extended by the CDC through June 30, 2021.

This is the third time that the moratorium has been extended which in turn is bringing relief to millions of renters that have been financially impacted by the pandemic. The order first came in September 2020 set to expire at the end of the year but was then extended until January 31, 2021. One of President Joe Biden’s first acts in the office was extending the order until March 31, 2021. But the CDC once again extended the deadline.

Preventing evictions is one of the many ways to stop the spread of COVID-19, ensuring that people can stay in their homes even if they cannot pay rent. Oftentimes, when people are evicted from not being able to pay rent, they are forced to go to homeless shelters. This ban will prevent overcrowding and congregated areas like shelters to help the spread of the virus.

With the pandemic closing millions of businesses worldwide and people losing their jobs left and right, this ban allows people to stay where they are and not get evicted if they do not have the funds possible to pay in full every month.

This ban on eviction is to provide protection for renters who are unable to pay their rent each month but they must give a declaration to their landlord stating that they are unable to but will give their best effort to pay with what they can.

But, once the ban eventually lifts, renters will be expected to pay all of their owed rent from the start of the pandemic or work out a payment plan with their landlord. This could in turn, force people to move or be evicted.