Jim Valentine: Life in the Quarantineation

Things are stabilizing as we are all understanding how to live with our new social protocols. We’ve talked about some of them over the past few weeks as we encountered this new way of life.

It seems that as we get used to one set of guidelines, new ones come along, however the real estate industry is now in a relatively stable position that allows most buyers and sellers to continue forward with their lives as it pertains to real estate.

There are some general observations to keep in mind. Timing isn’t always the same for performance and compliance. Things can take longer, especially if you are dealing with a governmental agency. Results depend on the department and agency you are dealing with. Wiring funds can be problematic these days as well. You might need an appointment to send the wire, and, from our recent experience, that won’t always get you a wire sent. You can submit a cashier’s check but that takes a couple of days to clear. Plan accordingly.

Innovation is the mother of invention — agents are adapting well. Innovative agents are hosting virtual open houses on Facebook. Actual open houses are prohibited right now, but one can view a home online at set intervals on a given day. Not a bad way to adjust your quarantine routine, looking at a wonderful local home. One agent we know recently had 600 people attend a virtual open house! That is truly amazing since most of the time at a “live” open house you get a handful of people. Sure, there were a lot of Lookey Lous, but the agent is working hard for her customer in getting the home marketed in a creatively adapted manner.

Homes occupied by renters may not, under any circumstances, be shown to a buyer these days. Don’t push your agent to get into one of those homes for if the word got out it could be like the golfers in Las Vegas that went golfing as a group without practicing proper social distancing procedures. That resulted in the closing down of all golf courses across Nevada. The same could happen to the real estate industry. All agents know this is a hard and fast rule — don’t test it or you could have everything shut down. That would negatively impact not only the buyers and sellers and their wants and needs, but the many thousands of people that are a part of our industry, i.e., escrow officers and staff, title departments, inspectors, appraisers, handymen, engineers, lawyers, CPAs, etc. There are many facets to our industry that would be adversely affected.

Many crystal balls are working overtime as many people want to be able to anticipate the future. How long will this last? What will happen if it is extended? What will happen when it is over? How will values be affected? What will happen with renters that haven’t paid? How far will property rights be compromised in the interest of public safety? Will the dollar stay strong after it is over? Agents get these and many more questions whenever talking to buyers and sellers these days. It is interesting hearing agents talk about these topics. All have an opinion and but they don’t all share the same opinion. With time to ponder, there are probably as many answers as there are people that ask the questions.

My advice: Business is fine. Those looking to buy or sell today are serious or they wouldn’t go through the effort involved. It’s not unlike showing property in the snow – such buyers are serious. Agents and all supporting industries are fully functional. Plan ahead for a few inefficiencies and allow proper performance time when you prepare your contract. Go about your business, don’t put your real estate life on hold.

What a blessing to spend this time together with your family! While it may not always seem that way as nerves get frayed and patience limited, you will always remember your quarantine activities and experiences. One of them can be how you bought/sold your house with gloves, masks, distancing, etc. Time will tell if we will do deals without shaking hands, but for now, enjoy the moment. These are the good ole days!

When it comes to choosing professionals to assist you with your real estate needs… Experience is Priceless! Jim Valentine, RE/MAX Realty Affiliates, 775-781-3704. dpwtigers@hotmail.com


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