As the real estate industry has been impacted by the negative effects of COVID-19, we surveyed agents to see how they felt about the current state of the industry and how it has affected their business.
The state of the real estate industry is treacherous, but agents found some comfort in the market and believe that the industry will be prosperous in the future. Check out what agents had to say below.
The Market Isn’t All Bad
The real estate market is challenging; however, the market seems to be doing well in spite of things. About 74 percent of our surveyed real estate agents felt confident in the state of the market. This means that agents felt good about where the market stood in terms of inventory, the amount of sales and the fact that they are conducting business.
About 60 percent of surveyed agents also claim that their business is about the same, if not better, compared to this same time last year. This might indicate that while the COVID-19 outbreak may have disrupted their business, they are still able to conduct business at the level they are accustomed to.
Listing Inventory Is Down
During this time, real estate agents have found that listing inventory was low. When asked how many listings they have compared to this time last year, when things were normal, roughly 58 percent of agents stated that they have fewer listings while about 41 percent claim that they have more listings than normal.
The low inventory we are seeing could be due to homeowners wanting to protect themselves during an outbreak that could jeopardize their health. When asked if there were listing cancellations, meaning the listings were pulled front the market, only about 34 percent of poll respondents experienced a listing cancellation.
Virtual Open Houses and Tours Haven’t Really Helped
While virtual open houses and tours are a great help to homebuyers purchasing their home from a distance, they have not been able to help agents close on homes. Many homebuyers still prefer to see their future home in person.
About 44 percent of surveyed agents say that they have conducted at least one video tour, virtual tour or a virtual open house. Around 69 percent of agents who have tried these say that they have not helped them close on a home. This could indicate that during a time where homes are in high demand, these homes are being closed by being shown safely and in person.
Clients Know What They Want
During a time where people are socially distancing themselves by remaining home, homebuyers are thinking of new things that they may want when it comes to their new home. Homebuyers are still looking for popular features such as open floor plans, but now 36 percent of agents are also seeing homebuyers looking for additional features. With many homebuyers working from home during COVID-19, dedicated home office spaces have risen in demand. Many homebuyers are also seeking bigger and better outdoor spaces.
The Positives of Budgets and Interest Rates
Real estate agents may have expected homeowners to lower their budget during a time where things were uncertain. However, 63 percent of agents said that their clients’ budgets have not changed and/or remained the same, while around 14 percent of agents said their clients have increased their budgets.
While most budgets have not changed, interest rates at an all-time low have created a surge of new homebuyers interested in purchasing homes during a time where they can secure a low interest rate. Fifty-nine percent of our surveyed agents say that low interest rates for mortgages have helped them gain new business.
Although these times may be uncertain, real estate agents have been able to look at their business and find the positives. Some have been able to build their business thanks to low interest rates and others see that their business is better than it was compared to this time last year. If you’re an agent looking to take your business to the next level, try Homes.com’s Local Connect. With Homes.com’s Local Connect, you can be one of the local experts selling listings in your area.