Should I be House Hunting During Covid-19?

Tips to Understanding Whether You Should be House Hunting, and How to do it Safely.

If you’re wondering if you could, or should be house hunting during Covid-19, here’s what you need to know.

Real Estate is considered an essential service, but it is NOT business as usual.

It is important to note that real estate services are considered “essential” only insofar as they are being employed to close a transaction (oreacovid19info.com).

All Open Houses have been prohibited during the provincial State of Emergency. 

We’ve also been instructed by OREA to stop all showings of tenanted properties, and in-person showings wherever possible.

Instead, we’re turning to technology to do virtual showings and all other aspects related to a property purchase or closing remotely.  It is strongly recommended that no face-to-face business be conducted, and that we find technological alternatives.

What does this mean if you’re looking for a home, or hoping to get a deal?

For your own safety, and the safety of others now is not the time to be out house physically house hunting.  Unless you absolutely have to, all real estate services should be performed remotely, or through the use of technological alternatives. 

This means, you’ll need to use as many of the online resources available to tour homes, which includes photos, virtual tours, floor plans.  I’ve been recommending clients drive by a prospective house if they can, and get a feel of the actual house, street, neighbourhood. 

In many cases, listing agents are even asking potential buyers to not view a home until after they’ve committed to the purchase— meaning their offer would be conditional upon a tour AFTER the offer has been accepted.

These are certainly interesting times, but we need to do whatever we can to keep everyone safe!  And, thanks to technology, we’re able to navigate this like never before.

But, I Want to Get a Deal Right Now!

Many of my clients are wondering if they can get a good deal right now.

Here’s what I’ve been finding so far.

The “deals” per se haven’t exactly started playing out like crazy in the market yet.

It appears that Sellers are not yet ready to fully throw in the towel and discount their selling price at this point in the pandemic— at least in a lot of cases.  Of course, each circumstance is different, and that would depend on a seller’s motivation.

For those that don’t have an immediate need to sell, it seems they are either waiting for this to all be over, or holding strong on their prices.  I’ve seen many listings terminated when they haven’t received offers at “their” price, and in a few cases, prices have been reduced slightly— but still in line with the Market.

And of course, we aren’t seeing the same number of houses coming on the market due to all the restrictions.

Only time will tell how this will all play out, but I have a strong faith in both the Canadian Economy and the Toronto Real Estate Market that things will rebound once this is all over.  

By: Deanna Allegranza

Buying Real Estate During Covid-19