In response to the coronavirus, the California Association of Realtors issued several disclosures that need to be signed electronically before showing a home. In addition, Cal-OSHA has mandated strict policies about wearing PPE, cleaning the home before and after showings, etc.
It’s a whole new level of distractions for agents, and because management has made it clear how important it is to comply (five Compass agents have already been turned in by outside realtors for non-compliance), there’s usually more attention on masks, gloves, and booties than on selling. Some agents even insist on pre-qual letters and/or bank statements just to see the house.
I’m all for compliance!
But the buyers are going to tire of the additional hassles……unless they are really interested in the house.
Thankfully, the situation is also forcing realtors to be more adept at video production and virtual showings, so buyers are getting a better feel for a home before deciding to see it in person – which also means that the buyers who do go to the trouble of jumping through the hoops are probably real contenders.
Realtors won’t mind no open houses, fewer looky-loos, and only showing homes to legitimate buyers!
But agents better be ready to go.
It’s already happened three times this year where I sold my listing to the first buyer who saw it!
The old broker saying that “your first offer is your best offer” may be more true now than ever.
Benefits of Selling To The First Buyer:
Maximum negotiating power
Fewer repair hassles
Stop the showings
End the uncertainty
Get Your Money Sooner!
With the improved internet tools, buyers are more prepared than ever to buy your home – and they want to get it over with now, before they have to sign another form or wear another booty!
Our coronavirus showing disclosure form changes every week (sometimes multiple changes per week) and now it’s literally up to EIGHT pages long. Every buyer has to sign a new form for every house they want to see, in advance, and by electronic signatures only.
But it hasn’t slowed down showings – we are back to where we were last year!
We (Klinge Realty Group) have been fortunate to stay in full operation and be very productive this year, so we haven’t had layoffs or cutbacks. In fact, our team has grown – daughter Natalie is now on board!
But for those businesses that need assistance, the City of Carlsbad might be able to help:
The City Council approved $4.4 million for business loans as a part of the Economic Recovery and Revitalization Initiative focused on recovery from the COVID-19 health emergency.
Microloans will be made available for businesses with gross revenue of $2 million or less and 15 employees or fewer with loan amounts ranging from $5,000 to $10,000. Repayment rates are outlined below:
0% interest if paid back within 6 months
1% interest if paid back within 12 months
2% interest if paid back within 18 months
Small business recovery loans will be made available for businesses with gross revenue of $3 million or less and 50 or fewer employees with loan amounts ranging from $10,000 to $25,000. Repayment rates are outlined below:
2% interest if paid back within 12 months
3% interest if paid back within 30 months
All applicants must hold a valid business license with the City of Carlsbad as of March 1, 2020 and be in good standing with the city.
To begin the first step in the application process, please go to http://carlsbadca.gov/loan. We will review your information and respond within five business days with a determination on whether you can proceed with the application process.
In preparation for the next step in the application process you may want to gather documentation regarding the length of time your business has been in operation, the financial impact that the COVID-19 health emergency has had on your business, at least six-months of bank statements, and your plan for using the funds if awarded
The city will hold a webinar on June 3 at 3:00pm to answer questions regarding the loan program. Please click here to register.
The City of San Diego has closed their loan window already, but they have the list of federal, state, and local financial resources available for businesses here:
Here’s your competition – people will go out, if they feel safe. From Realtor Magazine:
Fifty-six percent of consumers say that despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, they would attend an open house or take a home tour without hesitation, according to the Back To Normal Barometer from research company Engagious. Additionally, nearly half of respondents to the survey say they would return to activities such as taking a cruise, attending a live sporting event, or staying at a hotel.
However, an even greater number—61%—are concerned about the overall public health crisis and the U.S. economy, a sign that consumers are more hopeful about their personal circumstances than they are about the country in general. “People are concerned about societal impacts rather than how [COVID-19] affects them personally,” said Jon Last, president of Sports & Leisure Research Group, a marketing research consultancy based in White Plains, N.Y., and a co-creator of the barometer. “And they feel the same about the economy.”
Engagious presented the findings of the Back To Normal Barometer, a biweekly survey that measures consumer interest in a variety of industries and activities during the COVID-19 pandemic, to the National Association of REALTORS® last week.
The panel also looked at the survey respondents who said they weren’t ready to go to an open house yet and what conditions it would take for them to feel safe enough to do so again. According to Rich Thau, president of Engagious and co-creator of the barometer, they would need specific assurances, including the approval of a COVID-19 vaccine (47%) and assurances from the local health department that touring open houses would be safe (45%). “Two things that are critical are a certificate stating that [an area] has been properly sanitized according to established protocols and that the certificate has been issued by a local authority,” Thau said.
The real estate–related findings come from a national online survey earlier in May of 1,040 buyers and sellers. The goal was to provide insights about how consumers want to safely navigate residential real estate transactions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Gina Derickson, research director of Engagious, expanded on the precautions that are important to consumers: People want to know that cleaning has taken place before they enter an establishment; they want to see professional cleaners rather than staff (or homeowners) working on high-touch surfaces like doorknobs and elevator buttons; and the right products and right wording are important. People prefer terms like “sanitized” and “disinfected” over “cleaned” on signage.
According to Derickson, respondents also saw a difference in risk associated with open houses depending on what side of the transaction a person falls on. The selling side is viewed as having a higher risk than the buying side. Sellers, Derickson explains, are perceived as having less control over who comes into the home and the surfaces people touch. On the other hand, respondents believe that buyers can better avoid COVID-19–related dangers and have a good sense of what a clean home looks like.
But whether on the buying or selling side, survey respondents agreed on one thing: Agents are crucial in helping them navigate the open house process. “Buyers and sellers depend on agents to inform them and enforce compliance,” Derickson said. “They want the agent to tell them what to do, and they want vetting to make sure the home is safe.”
In analyzing the survey results, Thau said real estate agents matter more than ever on both sides of the transaction. Fifty-eight percent of sellers and 58% of buyers say the buying and selling of real estate is an essential service, and 62% of sellers and 54% of buyers say a real estate agent’s guidance is especially valued during the pandemic.
Don’t Rely Completely on Virtual Tours
Thau offered some intriguing insights into the characteristics of the buyers and sellers themselves. A majority of both say they are comfortable with technology and conducting business on a computer, as well as taking online tours of homes. In addition, 55% of buyers say virtual tours are great for initially vetting which homes they would seriously consider purchasing, though that number dropped quite a bit when asked if a virtual tour was an acceptable substitute for an actual tour. Despite the drop, two out of five buyers say they would consider buying a home without a visit.
Thau revealed that there are ways to enhance the value of a virtual tour, such as including a tour of the neighborhood or providing written information about home improvements the seller has made. He found that 54% of buyers and 55% of sellers believe it’s important to have a real estate professional help buyers navigate virtual homebuying options.
In terms of traditional in-person home tours, both buyers and sellers see value in precautions, such as providing sanitary wipes, limiting visitors to two to four at a time, providing hand sanitizer, and requiring masks, gloves, and shoe coverings. Thau also noted that buyers and sellers see hand sanitizer, sanitary wipes, and visitor limitations as precautions that will need to remain in place over the long term.
Thau also included a caution for agents in reference to in-person tours: Thirty-eight percent of buyers and 48% of sellers indicate that they would consider legal action if they contracted COVID-19 after a showing. And 29% of buyers and 41% of sellers indicate that they would still consider suing even if they had signed a release. However, 58% of buyers say they’re willing to waive their right to sue.
Agents Expected to Offer COVID-19 Guidance
According to Thau, what matters the most to buyers and sellers about in-person tours is the real estate agent, who is expected to know and enforce health-related safety rules. Sixty-four percent of buyers and sellers state that agents should understand state and local protocols for COVID-19 safety and provide guidance, and 63% of buyers and 64% of sellers say that if someone in the home is not following health protocols during a visit, they expect the real estate agent to address it.
Buyers and sellers also indicated that it is important for an agent to know how to close a real estate transaction electronically, and a majority of both indicated that agents add value to an online search. Helping buyers uncover valuable information about a property, helping them sift through online listings, and providing more in-depth pictures and videos of properties were among the ways agents could be of service to clients. And while 40% of buyers and 52% of sellers stated that they wouldn’t need to meet their real estate agent in person to buy or sell a home, they did place a premium on oral communication—70% of buyers and 66% of sellers said they felt more comfortable talking on the phone or talking via Skype, FaceTime, Zoom, or a similar app that allows face-to-face communication, which are much higher numbers than those who felt comfortable communicating by email or text.
What this means, Thau said, is that agents really matter during the pandemic. Forty-seven percent of buyers and 53% of sellers indicated that relying on a real estate professional for buying or selling a home was more important than before. “Agents’ value has gone up tremendously as a result of the pandemic,” he said. “People need reassurance.” And he offered this advice: “Know the protocols, follow them, and don’t be afraid to enforce them.”
We are back to having a similar number of California showings as we had in the first week of March!
It looks like we will jam the usual six-month-long selling season into just four – May through August – but only if there is enough to sell. The showings leveled off recently, and it might be because buyers have seen everything there is to see. But the total number of new actives did surge higher, but that might only mean you have 1-2 more to look at:
The 121 new listings this week is the most since we had 122 on March 11, 2019 – yet we’re still 200+ listings behind where we were a year ago. The new pendings had a big week too with an increase of 57% over last week’s count:
Mortgage rates hit their all-time low this week, so it’s all blue sky ahead!
We are #24 on the Top 30 markets to be affected by the coronavirus, which is pretty far down the list – and we’re still relatively affordable when compared to other higher-end areas.
For those who are thinking of moving to a more affordable area and aren’t affected by the statistics, here are my favorites that still have a 2020 median SP under $300,000, in order of how they rank on the list:
Las Vegas – $283,000 (1st)
Miami – $275,900 (5th)
Orlando – $245,000 (6th)
Ft Myers – $235,000 (8th)
Fresno – $265,000 (12th)
Lakeland FL – $193,000 (13th)
Memphis – $145,000 (21st)
Jacksonville – $210,000 (25th)
Daytona Beach – $202,000 (26th)
Phoenix – $288,000 (28th)
And their surrounding suburbs might be an even greater value!
"I cannot believe there are no reviews of Donna yet, ugh!! She is the secret sauce of the Jim Klinge/Donna Klinge combo! I will touch on Jim here, but Donna is why I'm so totally loyal to these two (no offense to Jim :)).
I consider myself a rather savvy buyer/seller. I've bought/sold 7 times in more "
"Jim and Donna Klinge are by far the most professional, personable and responsive realtors I have ever worked with. They provide VIP concierge level service in every area of the process of selling your home. My home was marketed so successfully that we received an offer the day after our first and only open house. Thanks to Jim's pricing and negotiating, our house is now the highest sold in our community... more "
by Ann Romanello
"Jim educated us, helped us find the perfect house, and then negotiated us a great deal. I would hate to be sitting across the negotiating table from ... more "
"Jim is thorough and will be brutally honest about the homes he shows you. He provides great service and follows through until the very end and even ... more "
"I highly recommend Jim as a buyer’s agent. Working with Jim, we closed this week on a San Diego condo. Jim prepared a list of comparable sales to ... more "