As we move into a post-pandemic era, it is critical to assess what has changed about selling real estate. After all, if you want to stay at the top of your game, you need to stay on top of attitudes and trends. Here are some aspects from the perspective of post-pandemic buyers on what has changed in real estate sales.
Post-Pandemic Buyers: What’s Changed
There was little concern about inflation in the pre-pandemic economy, and interest rates looked like they could stay low forever. Today, inflation is growing as a concern, and virtually everyone agrees that near record-low interest rates are a thing of the past. While both can be problematic for real estate agents, both can offer opportunities. Real estate, for example, is an excellent hedge against inflation and prospective buyers should understand this. Increasing interest rates provide a sense of urgency for agents and buyers. Both inflation and rising interest rates can bring new people into the market who may have otherwise remained on the sideline.
Attitudes on In-Person Viewings
Buyers may be less likely to attend public open houses and an increasing number of prospects are purchasing homes without an in-person visit. This magnifies the importance of visual presentations, accurate, attention-grabbing descriptions and even on home inspections.
Location. Location. And Location.
Of course, location remains a critical element for buyers, but depending on their situation, it may be a bit less important. There are several reasons for this, including more people are working remotely. This offers more flexibility for some buyers in where they choose to call home. Even food and restaurant deliveries have made location just a bit less critical.
While a spare bedroom or office space may have been nice pre-pandemic, the importance of extra space has become more important than ever. A study room, fitness room or flex space could close the deal for families spending more time or working from home.
The Value of Outdoor Living Space
Through the pandemic, many have learned that dining and entertaining outdoors can be safer than congregating in large groups indoors. This may place more importance on outdoor space, including sunrooms, decks, and patios. These can prove to be more attractive than ever.
Communication Is Still Key
While there have been massive changes in technology, social distancing, and even in the number and type of competitors, one thing that hasn’t changed is the importance of communication. In fact, a real estate agent’s ability to ask the right questions and to listen to the answers of a prospective buyer may be more important than ever. Everyone has had their personal experiences with the pandemic and have made their own changes to their lifestyles. It can be extremely valuable to discover these impacts on your buyer before assuming anything.
A large part of what makes you so valuable as a real estate agent is your ability to ask questions, listen, and relate to your buyer clients. Discover how you can best make them feel more comfortable about the buying process and the “just below the surface” property features that can help you make the sale in a post-pandemic environment. It is no longer enough to find out what buyers want, but how they want to buy.
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