SF Real Estate x (COVID-19 + Shelter-in-Place) = ???
The COVID 19 Pandemic certainly raises a lot of difficult questions while we all look forward to the day we are cleared to come out into the social world again. I’d like to briefly address some of those questions as they relate to the current state of the market and what real estate might look like in the future.
Is Real Estate On Hold During the Pandemic?
Know that real estate has been classified as an essential business. As of April 1st you can still sell and buy a home as mandated by the San Francisco shelter-in-place ordinance. There are severe restrictions around hosting open houses and coordinating vendor services. Please call for more information on how this might affect your plans.
Are there Opportunities?
The next two months offer a unique opportunity for bargain seekers. Sellers are far more likely to accept a lower offer now than once all this settles down. The great unknown will urge Sellers to move now while they have a Buyer’s interest. Successful Buyers will need the confidence that they can hold on in a downwardly moving market and the reserves to weather the investment.
Is it Better for Buyers or Sellers?
Both Buyer and Sellers may come out of this as winners. The Seller wins by moving on with their life and the Buyer can still find a home they love and afford.
What does the Near Future Hold?
For the near future, most Sellers will continue to make good on their investment. As we look towards the next 3 months most Buyers will pay less than they would have in the first two months of 2020.
What About Long Term?
I predict that the housing market will not go down as much as the unemployment rate goes up. The real Buyers of San Francisco / California real estate are well-positioned to weather this unemployment and economic storm. I also believe the vast majority of the unemployment claims are temporary and we will see those numbers bounce back. I also predict that this value reduction will be short-lived. We will continue to experience lack of inventory in San Francisco which will then drive the prices to their previous levels relatively quickly.
No more predictions for today but I do urge all of you to continue being cautiously optimistic. We are resilient, we will get through this, and we will recover. Stay safe, stay healthy, stay informed.
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