The coronavirus pandemic and the lockdowns have been impacting not only the business world but how individuals behave.
The pandemic and the lockdowns changed people’s attitude towards many aspects including how they consider investing in a real estate property. The reason is that many people are working from home, spending more time at home and this has led people to reevaluate their properties and what it becomes important under such circumstances.
There are features that before the lockdown and the pandemic have not been important for potential buyers and renters, but this has changed.
Reasons that were not so important, became primary reasons for buyers and renters when searching for a property.
Home hunters since the pandemic and the lockdowns have been focusing on finding properties that can accommodate working from home. Several home hunters have been looking at properties that have a space to be turned into an office.
The new normal with people working from home is expected to continue for much longer than expected and it might be here to stay.
Many companies are considering the work from home even after the pandemic as it can be more productive, motivating and financially beneficial for both the employees and employer.
Furthermore, the pandemic created a lot of changes in the lifestyle of home hunters. Home hunters are now looking for properties that have space for exercising, as well as properties that have gardens. Since the pandemic there has been a higher demand in properties away from the cities and be closer to the countryside, park or the coast.
Also, it has been noticed that people are avoiding city centers, going for shopping and other leisure activities due to the higher possibilities of becoming infected with the virus. Therefore, the job hunters are looking for a property which can accommodate both their working and leisure environment.
Moreover, there has been a downward trend in properties which have an open plan. Home hunters are looking for properties that they have separated rooms as it is quieter, and it gives more privacy to the individuals living in the property.
In addition, the real estate seekers are not only looking at property features. They are also focused on the procedure prior to renting or purchasing a house. To elaborate, people are now looking for virtual viewing, high resolution photos and virtual tours.
Likewise, house seekers are looking for virtual transaction processes including digital contracts and signatures, and digital meetings with the real estate agents and/or the property’s sellers. The reason why home seekers now are looking to work with real estate agents that meet those prerequisites is to avoid the physical contact and thus to decrease the chances of spreading the virus and/or get infected. Thus, property seekers are looking for real estate professionals who are technologically savvy and know how to do things online.
Similarly, there is a higher demand from home seekers to ensure that all the safety measures against Covid-19 are followed when and where in person viewings are allowed. For example, both the potential buyer/renter and the real estate agent are wearing face covering, they are using hand sanitizer gel and they are wearing show coverings whilst in the house. Hence, the number of people allowed to view the property to be limited whilst maintain social distancing.
The Covid-19 pandemic and the countries’ lockdowns along with the regulations imposed to protect the public’s health have influenced how people are searching and purchasing real estate properties.
There is still a significant demand for properties and there is a lot of potential for the real estate market to evolve and prosper in the following years. There are a lot of things that changed and still changing, which might become permanent in the future.
One thing that is definitely staying and real estate professionals should focus on, is their presence online. It is now more important than ever before to have a strong online presence, as most property seekers are conducting their first search on various online getaways.
Real estate professionals should utilise the power of social media, real estate platforms portals and their own website to maximize their exposure, showcase their expertise, and connect with potential buyers and renters.
In addition, real estate professionals should ensure that they expand their property portfolio outside the cities, and they are following the regulations imposed by the government to ensure the safety of their clients.
To sum up, the current circumstances showed how important it is for buyers to be able to purchase a property online and get the same experience and ease as when purchasing a property in person.