Selling During COVID
As a prospective Seller, we know that you might have questions about the process with COVID-19 which affects almost everything that we do. Since March of 2019, nearly every aspect of home showing and selling has changed dramatically but sales are strong and we are making it work with your safety in mind at every juncture.
The real estate industry has added extra precautions and the industry has changed the way that we operate. Recommendations from local officials and the CDC are adhered to and the use of technology has certainly aided in our day to day activities.
Seller Consultations and Paperwork
We understand that you may desire to keep distance at this time. We are happy to do our consultations over the home utilizing Zoom or Facetime. We can “meet” each other and talk about your questions and concerns. You can walk us through your home and we can discuss all of the features as well as make preliminary suggestions on what next steps to take to get your home market ready.
If you’d prefer for us to have an in-person visit, we are happy to do that as well and will come equipped with our masks on.
If your home needs repairs or updates prior to selling, we will facilitate that for you if desired so that your contact with outside providers is minimal. Most stagers, inspectors and workers are asking that no one be home while they are doing their work.
Your seller disclosures and all standard disclosures can all be filled out and signed electronically. We double check everything to make sure they are filled out properly.
As always, how your home shows online is very important. Now, more than ever, buyers are first doing a lot of research online about your home so it’s vital that we portray it in the best possible light. Professional photography and a floorplan are standards and we will have a videographer or virtual tour available as well. Pre-Inspections and a full disclosure packet for prospective buyers to look at are a very good idea so that no one is wasting time looking at a home that they are not prepared to love.
A staged home is a better looking home, however we recognize that sometimes, this is simply not possible. With technology, we are able to de-stage your furnishings and re-stage (virtually) with universally appealing furniture. Our online companies can change paint colors, re-do the décor, even mock up a remodel so that it shows well online.
Our listings are populated onto all of the search engines online so that you’ll receive maximum exposure and show in the best possible way.
The current County protocol states that one agent and two buyers are allowed in the home at any time after all online material has been viewed.
If a prospective buyer wishes to view the home via Zoom or Facetime, we will allow their agent access or simply do it ourselves. If you live in the home, you’ll be asked to vacate for the duration of the showing so please think about where you might be able to go for a bit.
There are no more open houses for the time being. All showings are by appointment only with the Buyer’s agent and their clients. The good news in all of this is that only serious Buyers are coming through your home. All buyers and their agents will have to sign a Property Entry Advisory (PEAD) prior to setting foot into your home. We can also ask them to provide a pre-approval letter or proof of funds for the purchase.
For showings, if you live in the home, it’s best that you switch on all the lights and leave closet doors open so that your visitors don’t have to touch anything. In addition, our company will provide PPE (gloves, booties, wipes, sanitizer) at each home. Although we request that agents wipe down surfaces and refrain from touching things, we will always advise you to take the extra precaution of wiping things down when you return home.
In Contract – Escrow to Closing
After accepting an offer on your home, there are still many things that need to happen before we get to the finish line. Often, the buyer will conduct their inspections during their allotted time period. Many inspectors do not want others in the home while they are there. Some will allow buyers to be there towards the end of the inspection.
Appraisers for the lender(s) will also need access to the home. This generally takes about 30 minutes and they too, wish to be in the home with no others present. It’s important that inspectors and the appraiser have full access to basements, the garage, and any outbuildings.
Our company has resources for you from handymen to organizers, to movers. You’ll be well equipped to schedule time and people to help with your move. Just reach out, we are here to provide resources.
When it comes time for you to sign your paperwork with the Title Company, they will likely send a notary to your home. This process is simple and we will be available by phone in case any questions arise. Prior to that appointment, you’ll be able to view your closing statement and we will review it together to make sure there are no errors.
Home Prices and COVID
We are not sure that anyone could have predicted that housing prices would have gone up to the degree that they have. Inventory has been low over the past few years and in this COVID time, the fact that many home sellers are reluctant to having people come through their homes has further reduced the amount of homes that are available to be viewed. For the most part, the market is a seller’s market with multiple offers that are over the asking price and often without contingencies. We will have ongoing discussions with you on the state of the market and position you in the best possible way for success.
Economically speaking, we are still due for a recession at some point. If we had a crystal ball, we’d tell you when that’s coming but since we don’t, the best advice for now is have your home on the market when interest rates are low and inventory is low. That means now (Or as soon as possible)!!
For now, San Francisco is experiencing a bit of a slowdown. Counties outside of SF are doing well. Single Family Homes are selling quickly and with multiple offers. Condominiums and Townhomes are taking a bit longer. When you are ready, we will run an analysis on your home and together come up with a pricing strategy for you.
People are moving all the time and you too can do this. Front Porch Realty Group is here to help you every step of the way. Please reach out and let’s have a conversation about it.