I recently had the pleasure of being interviewed by The Journal Record and News Channel 9 in OKC concerning the Covid-19 outbreak. The links to those interviews are below, along with my written thoughts on the pandemic and its possible affects on our real estate market.
Local Real Estate Industry Bracing For Potential Impact Amid Coronavirus (COVID-19) – News Channel 9 – OKC
Housing Hesitation? Financial Fears Could Put Brakes on Home Sales – The Journal Record – OKC
We are doing our best to be respectful of the recommendations of Governor Stitt, Mayor Holt, and our Nation’s leaders while we conduct business across the metro area. In our industry people are motivated to buy and sell homes for many different reasons, and right now we are focused on helping those who currently have deals outstanding or would be otherwise homeless if we don’t push forward with their transaction. We have asked our Realtors to conduct their meetings virtually whenever possible, drive in separate cars when showing properties, and to keep a respectable distance from their clients when meeting with them face to face. We are considering, and utilizing, alternative marketing opportunities, like virtual tours and video walkthroughs for open houses, property tours, and marketing homes to sell.
My thoughts on how Covid-19 will affect the local housing market changes by the hour. Initially, I thought that oil prices would have a greater immediate effect on our local market…enter Rudy Gobert and the NBA shut down, then our real estate conference in Orlando was cancelled, and finally a state of emergency was declared. Now I fear that our biggest issues (obviously outside of the immediate health risks to the general public) is the direct impact on our local economy, especially hourly employees, self employed individuals, small businesses, and those in the service industry.
There are several avenues of concern from the real estate perspective. Demand for housing could be affected due to the stock decline, eroding down payments, and concern about a buyer’s future employment. Furthermore, social distancing could weigh on the ability to transact. Current home owners could be hurt if their incomes are impaired, resulting in more delinquencies and potentially more inventory coming to the market. Wage declines from social distancing and economic decline could affect renters’ income and landlords in turn. If landlords are hurt, that inventory could come to the market. And finally, the effects I just mentioned are due to social distancing, but actual illnesses could compound the decline in demand and supply. Stay with me, it’s not all bad news!!
Currently, we are hearing that some lenders in our market are overwhelmed from the volume of refinances due to rate declines and we have yet to see a slowdown affect our office specifically, but that is obviously subject to change.
The National Association of Realtors recently did a flash survey and the majority, 88% to be exact, of sellers have decided not to make a change in their current home listing. Half of all members cited there was no notable change in client behavior regarding the stock market and mortgage rate changes.
It is safe to say that nobody really knows how this unprecedented situation will impact the housing market, but it is almost certainly going to have a major impact! As you take stock of what is going on around us, remember that in the history of the stock market, after a decline the market has recovered 100% of the time, and after a recovery, the market has gone on to reach a new high 100% of the time! So stay home, stay safe, and stay informed!
Your neighborhood expert,
Robert Gideon II
NextHome Central Real Estate