COVID-19 has undoubtedly affected everything and everybody. Our daily routines and lives have been interrupted in ways most have never experienced before. Unfortunately, one big impact has been massive amounts of job layoffs. According to a Federal Reserve estimate the COVID-19 pandemic could cause 47 million jobs lost. With all the job loss it is virtually impossible to not have some impact on the real estate market. Even if we come out of this in the next 6 weeks we will see economic impacts for at least the rest of the year.
As a Realtor you must adapt your business to be ready to handle the changes that we will see by fall where the market just will not have the same amount of demand and it will be noticeable. Here are some ways you can adapt starting today so that if we do experience market correction you will not only survive but thrive!
1. No selling, be compassionate
Realtors have different opinions on how to, or whether or not to, conduct business during this time but I think one thing we can all agree on is being a caring human comes first and foremost. Right now is not the time to be pushing a seller to list or a buyer to buy. Rather show your clients sympathy and understanding with the current situation they are in and any decisions they make. If they decide to hold off on listing or searching for houses, then don’t push it. Be respectful. Sellers will not be in any harm if they wait a couple weeks to list as Anthony explained in his Q&A for Realtors LIVE video and several other videos since.
2. Get In touch with every single past client
Call all of your past clients to say hello to make sure they are doing well and seeing if they need anything. They will think of you first when the time has come when they are ready to list or start their home search.
Just because you should be social distancing from people doesn’t mean communication seizes to exist. Now is a great time to dial, dial, dial! The phone is your friend and will make you the most money as a Realtor. If you do have listing appointments scheduled use Zoom to conduct them. The great thing about technology nowadays is that we have these alternate ways of staying connected and resuming life as best we can (thank goodness!)
3. Be the resource
The best way you can show your value as a Realtor is to truly be a resource for your client. What do we mean by resource? Get them the information they need when they are in trouble, provide them with the most up to date information with what is currently happening using your Realtor Association. We created a Realtor resource page for reference on all things real estate and COVID-19 related. If your client is potentially going to have any trouble paying their mortgage guide them to the Homeowner Mortgage Assistance section so they can learn who owns their mortgage and you can encourage them to get in touch with their mortgage servicer.
As previously mentioned, now is not a time to sell! SHOW, don’t tell, that you are the real estate resource and expert. How? Write or share a blog, film a video on what the market looks like right now (people are more interested than ever considering the time we are in), create a graphic showing statistics on the area you serve. The possibilities are endless. Your audience has been widened ten-fold on social media due to these circumstances and it’s your chance to be the voice of real estate.
4. Watch inventory levels
We are in a supply and demand business meaning you need to stay on top of what is happening currently with the market. Remember, the market can only crash if inventory goes UP and UP dramatically. Therefore, pay very close attention to the inventory of homes for sale in the towns you sell in and all of its surrounding towns. Right now, inventory is actually lower but that’s because many sellers are holding off on listings so don’t be fooled yet. The true test will come in the fall.
5. Master pricing & price adjustments
Anyone who just started in the business in the last 5 years is going to get a wakeup call come this Fall because the market has changed. You will need to be able to talk to your sellers about pricing and price adjustments confidently. This will be crucial so be sure to sharpen your skills now to prepare yourself for having to have much more detailed conversations about their homes likely not being worth what they thought.
6. Don’t sit around feeling bad for yourself - TAKE ACTION
Don’t stop and sit back. Stay busy! Catch up on training, check in with leads and clients, get listings ready. There is still so much you can continue to work on from the comfort of your own home. This is not a time to get down on yourself – be on offense!
Although many of us have not experienced such a time as this we must remember: “This too shall pass.” Do the best with what you have, be a resource, support your clients and remember everyone is in this together.
Visit our COVID-19 Realtor Resource page for weekly market updates, new crush it videos & updates, Realtor Association information and more!