At the end of this tough news week, we wanted to provide an update on the real estate market as it relates to COVID-19 (Coronavirus).
Unequaled Strength of Long & Foster
Although several states in our markets have stay in place orders, our numbers have been steady. Month-to-date, Long & Foster’s real estate agents have sold more properties for a higher volume than the same time last year. In addition, year-to-date, our numbers remain positive, with an increase in closed volume and transaction units.
An Increase in Virtual Shopping on Longandfoster.com
More consumers are shopping for a home, from the safety and comfort of their homes. Our website traffic has increased a significant 30% month-to-date, with 660,000 unique visitors to the site. This demonstrates the demand for real estate has not changed; instead, consumers today are pausing, taking a deep breath and focusing on their families, but still shopping for real estate online.
Focusing on the Positive
There’s much to be worried about these days with so much uncertainty, but there are some bright spots to remember. Mortgage interest rates remain at historic lows, increasing buying power. Homes are appreciating at a steady pace. Congress passed a stimulus package this week that will pump money into our economy.
The pandemic is undoubtedly causing an economic slowdown, but that does not mean it will turn into a severe recession…and even if it does, it is unlikely to result in a housing crisis. During 3 of the last 5 recessions in the United States, home values actually increased while one resulted in a 2% decline. The 2008 recession, which did experience a substantial loss in home values, was caused by easy access to mortgage credit. We no longer have the risky products that fueled that crisis and we have a much healthier market today.
Fortunately, our company was built for this moment. Not only are we capable of withstanding and overcoming this very serious situation, our family of businesses are equally strong and focused on providing the very best care and service possible.