Real Estate Buyers and Sellers and Covid-19

The threat of severe health consequences from the outbreak of Covid-19 in 2019 was an unprecedented event to say the least. Everyone’s world was turned upside down and sideways. I am here to tell you about what happened to Real Estate Agents and their Brokers in response to such dramatic changes.

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Initially there was a dramatic reduction in inventory. The market in NJ had slowed 75% less then a year before. Corporations took measures to avoid legal issues in regards to employees getting sick at work and sueing. This new era mentality rolled in every direction and for Real Estate the result was a COVID-19 Hold Harmless and Release form.

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How does this affect my buyers, it doesn’t really, Most sellers have a signed hold harmless at the property. Some do require a signed Covid Release form to be signed prior to which I use dotloop to digitally sign the document. Wearing a mask is the new normal for the most part. I have no issues supporting safe measures. I incorporate solutions such as offering back up disposable masks, booties, and hand sanitizer. We are all pretty well adapted to these new norms anyway.

Unfortunately Covid is having continued evidential impact on the markets. Currently we see many properties selling for above market value. That is not a bad thing if your buyers are all cash. What is happening is some sellers take a high offer and the buyers either get cold feet or worse the property does not appraise. ‘Does Not Appraise’ means that lets say you offered 450,000 on a property listed for 400,000. Your offer was accepted… inspections… the bank for the mortgage company sends out an appraiser and he says the house is only worth 410,000 that means that either the Buyer has to pay 40,000 more to cover the difference or the Sellers need to accept 40,000 less.

There are ways for Sellers and Buyers to protect themselves when entering these contracts and hiring the right agent who understands the importance of every detail makes all the difference in the confidence of your transaction. It is especially important with the continued competition amongst buyers to have your plan ready and your ducks in a row.

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