Nobody knows how the impact of COVID-19 on Maryland Real Estate and Showings will impact the real estate market over the next few months because we don’t know what the real impact of the virus will be on public health and markets. According to the POTUS, it could disappear one day – and according to others, we could face a devastating pandemic. Uncertainty slows the real estate market down – it’s hard to see how this type of uncertainty doesn’t create a drag on real estate across the country, the question is how long it will last.

On the other hand, interest rates are still historically low, recently hitting all-time lows, and the market across the Baltimore and Washington D.C region has been hot since January so it’ll take a major shift in demand to slow things down as we head into peak buying season.

We have spoken to our clients, colleagues, and lending title partners about the state of business. Overwhelmingly everyone agrees that buyers are hoping the Coronavirus slows the market down so they can have a better opportunity to buy, but there seems to be very few people actually pulling out of the market. Buyers still seem more motivated by historically low rates and lack of buying opportunities than they are concerned that the impact of the virus. Long-term confidence in Maryland real estate and showings is still a stronger influence on people’s decisions.

This mindset could change quickly, having negative effects on the local market, if markets continue the downward trend and systematic failures appear in the market. And let’s not forget how people are experiencing more direct effects of the virus like business and school closures – even people they know testing positive. All of these scenarios are important for you to watch and understand if you’re considering putting your home on the market in the coming weeks.

 

Thinking of listing your home but have questions concerning the impact of COVID-19 on Maryland real estate and showings? Contact a client advisor now.

 

It’s important to distinguish between the facts and news media speculation.  Almost on a continuous cycle, the national news networks and local papers will have you believe that the market is on the brink of another recession. We have researched and believe the reasons why everything will be just fine, with industry growth ahead. Your decision should be focused on how long you can live happily in your home and what your best alternatives are to buying, whether that be renting or selling. Keep in mind that you want to consider the national, regional, and local economy as well as neighborhood trends, development pipelines, and other market indicators that will have influence – but be careful not to overvalue speculation.

We spent the past few days studying the reactions of clients to gauge shifts in supply and demand. All indications seem that many buyers are staying the course with their purchase but nervousness is setting in over the last couple of days, especially for those who also need to sell a home. Sellers are much more nervous – and understandably so and many are questioning the need to sell their home.

Almost all agents have experienced noticeable drops in open house and showing traffic (and now that we are on a Shelter in Place order by Governor Hogan these have ceased).  It seems that there are fewer people visiting homes who aren’t serious or ready to buy and that usually makes up a large percentage of total foot traffic. In Virginia and Maryland, bookings are down 15% from where they were the previous week and analysts are projecting a 10% decrease in bookings given the time of year. Nationally, bookings are down by 20%.

Impact of COVID-19 on Maryland Real Estate and Showings

Those clients that are in the middle of closing process had some concern that their transactions would be halted due to courts, appraisers, and loan underwriters shutting down due to Coronavirus but so far everything is operational, with the adjustments to to social distancing practices and electronic closings. Unfortunately, virtual closings haven’t been embraced yet so some buyers and sellers do need to sign in-person in the presence of a notary. This helps if someone is in quarantine or they are older who want to self isolate from the rest of the population. This will help to ensure safe distance and cleanliness is required in order to sign paperwork.