May 8, 2020
How to Navigate the Home Search During the Pandemic
Life as we know it has changed significantly since the start of the Coronavirus Pandemic in 2020. Some of its effects include mandatory stay at home orders, masks worn on every excursion out of the house, and meetings/ celebrations being done virtually or through “drive-bys”. Despite these restrictions, life events are still occurring, and people are still needing to buy and sell homes.
Many Real Estate brokerages are working tirelessly to virtualize the home-buying process, offering the convenience of 3D Walkthroughs, Video-Chat Tours, as well as detailed photos to help clients make their decision. While all of these innovations are helping some to choose their next dream home, the thought of locking yourself into this kind of a commitment sight unseen understandably worries some home buyers.
If you believe that you’ve found your perfect home but still need to see it in person before pulling the trigger, follow these best-practices to keep yourself safe and prevent the spread of the virus:
Find a Real Estate Agent that values safety
In addition to helping you navigate through all of the legal mumbo-jumbo of a Real Estate transaction, your agent is your safety net. As your real estate agent, I would be the person in your corner, fighting for you to get the best deal on the best home in the best neighborhood. I promise you that you will never overpay. In addition to having your real estate needs in mind, I will also have your best interest in mind when it comes to your health. When choosing an agent, make sure that they are only allowing a limited amount of people in the home at one time, properly sanitizing each home before and after private showings, and wearing proper safety attire during showings to show that they care about their clients’ safety.
Don’t touch anything in the home
As we spoke about before, agents and sellers should be sanitizing homes before and after showings. However, we cannot make the assumption that every surface is completely free of germs. When viewing homes, make sure to wear gloves/ masks and only touch surfaces when absolutely necessary (door handles and railings). Bring sanitizing wipes with you and sanitize every surface you touch afterwards. To ensure your safety, Jim Slater will be at the home prior to the showing and ensure that you will not need to open any doors by yourself, for a touch-free experience.
Don’t go if you’re feeling unwell
Even if your symptoms don’t relate to COVID-19, at a time like this it is important to be very sensitive to the transmission of germs. Out of respect for the seller of the home, the realtor, as well as other people who may view the home after you, stay home and reschedule the showing if you are feeling sick.
Drive your own car
In pre-Coronavirus times, I would drive my clients from one home showing to the next and have the opportunity to converse about the homes, weighing the pros and cons of each. While this is a great way to connect with each other, the small spaces of cars make it a perfect place to transfer germs from one person to another. If you are able to drive your own car to a home tour, do so to prevent transmission.
Limit tours to two people
While we sometimes want the input of multiple people before making this important of a decision, now is not the time to bring your whole family to tour a home. Instead, bring only essential decision-makers with and do a video tour of the home to loved ones and get their thoughts. At this time, SRG is offering only private tours to small groups of people to ensure maximum safety.
While the impact of this virus is widespread, it doesn’t need to stop people from buying their dream home safely. Even a pandemic of this magnitude cannot stop life events from happening, which causes people to need to change up their living situations! While the safest way to view houses is virtually from the safety of your own home, adopting these simple best practices will keep you as safe as possible as you continue your search for your dream home!