No matter where in the world you are, these truly are unprecedented times; personally, professionally and economically. Future plans can feel uncertain, and this certainly can include those who are in the process of or were planning to move house. Indeed, for many homeowners, a pressing concern is how the current global situation will affect the sale of their home. Here at County Homesearch, our property finding experts bring you this guide to the current housing market practice during the coronavirus outbreak, whether you’re selling, buying or in the middle of the process!
How has COVID-19 affected the housing market?
As many of you will know, the outbreak of COVID-19 over the end of 2019 and beginning of 2020 has caused a huge amount of global uncertainty to all industries and markets, thanks to government restrictions and guidelines on social distancing, self-isolation and enforced venue closures across the world. The housing market is one of those naturally affected by rules and regulations on social distancing, which affects surveys and valuations taking place, viewing properties and even closing the deal! So, what does COVID-19 mean for you if you’re a prospective, imminent or seasoned homeowner? County Homesearch’s experts answer below.
How will COVID-19 affect my sale?
Firstly, there is no direct legislation as yet prohibiting the sale of purchase of properties. If you are mid-sale, there is no law preventing you from closing on your sale, nor offering or accepting. The issue arises, as you may predict, from the social proximity required to view, offer on and sell homes – it’s hard to view and make an offer on a property you can’t visit! For up-to-date legal guidance, it is important to check the government website which is able to reflect the very latest changes in law.
Luckily, County Homesearch remains on-hand to advise and assist with all aspects of your property viewing, including requesting virtual tours of properties and virtual completion of sale. Our agents at County Homesearch are also able to act on behalf of our clients by committing to view a property on the basis of photos, videos or virtual tours. Our agents remain on hand, available through their usual channels of telephone and email to assist all current and prospective clients wishing to find a property during this period.
What should I do in the meantime ?
If you are hoping to sell your property, this is the perfect opportunity to hugely improve your ‘sellability’ – that is, your prospects for profit! The number one factor differentiating the difference between houses that sell and houses that sell well is their appearance; how clean, spacious, and well-presented the properties are makes an enormous difference in the price they can reach!
Our top tip from our experts is to use this period to transform your home, and fulfil its potential into the best possible property it can be. This may include giving the walls a fresh coat of paint, investing in new decorations to improve its appearance, and gardening – this is truly the time for you to get around to all those jobs you’ve put off for months.
Our experts estimate that taking the time to do these simple household improvements can easily improve your property’s value by 10%. County Homesearch suggests holding a ‘trial viewing’ of your property: imagine yourself as a prospective buyer – what would your first impressions be? How can you make them better? Uncluttered, spacious, clean, bright houses always sell faster and for more than their cluttered, cramped counterparts, and particularly if this first impression is going to be obtained over photo or video!
Once you’re satisfied that you have invested sufficient time, energy and effort into presenting your property at its best, it is a good idea for you to reach out to buying agents like County Homesearch, to see if they have any clients with property requirements matching the qualities of the property you wish to sell. By providing suitable photos and videos, you can secure yourself a prospective buyer even during these difficult circumstances, who will send County Homesearch to view the property when it is safe and advisable to do so.
Indeed, should you wish to engage in a virtual auction during this time, this is also perfectly possible! A property auction held online has the same rules and regulations as a physical auction, allowing you to reserve a property from the comfort of your own home!
Of course, these are more difficult times to put a property on the market, but though times are complex for the housing market and indeed the wider world, County Homesearch are still able to assist you in many aspects of property seeking, property finding and completion of the deal. Simply get in touch with us today, and a member of our friendly team will be able to assist you with your enquiry.