Seven Ways Covid-19 is Changing Real Estate

Butterfly Beach on Channel Drive in Montecito, California

The Pandemic has had a profound effect on just about every aspect of American lives. And, those effects are unlikely to disappear anytime soon.

"There’s no place like “home” and that sentiment has only increased as people rethink what’s really important to them. Being able to spend more time together with one’s family and friends is resonating more now than ever.

Health is at the forefront of everyone’s thinking these days. Buyers and sellers expect an increased awareness of cleanliness and safety throughout the process and this focus is unlikely to change. Curiously this awareness or interest in wellness has morphed into how they perceive property and its well-being.

Inequality is on the rise. In California, the most significant fallout from the pandemic has been felt among Black and Latino people who were already at great risk of being unemployed. The wealth and income of Black and Latino households is now compounded by the pandemic as it erodes their savings which may handicap their ability to purchase a home in the future.

Suburban markets are booming. The work from home trend has prompted urban dwellers to move out to the suburbs. The urban flight was already happening but the pandemic has accelerated the trend.

Real Estate has gone Virtual. Virtual showings, virtual open houses, and virtual means of communication have become the norm and appear likely to continue after the pandemic as it’s proven to be a more effective methodology.

Second homes are in demand. Google search trends for “buying a second home” and “buying a vacation home” reached a 5 year high in July jumping 235% annually!

The housing supply is even tighter. Not what buyers want to hear. Seller’s hesitation to list during the pandemic further accelerated California’s inventory woes bumping up home prices in the process. In September, the California median home price reached an all-time high of $712,430 a 17.6 jump increase year over year. Home sales remain strong, notably in the high end of the market, and are projected to continue well into the year.

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