The COVID-19 pandemic has devastated economies, and already, some businesses have folded due to the loss of sales. The three worst-hit sectors in the UK are bars and restaurants, with a 37% rise in businesses in critical distress; real estate, with a 21% rise; and construction, with an 11% rise.
The Centre for Economics and Business Research has predicted that home values will fall by 13% by the end of 2020. In part due to potential home buyers losing income and steady employment. Besides this, measures to stop the spread of the virus mean that viewings are canceled even for those who could still afford to buy a home.
How will this affect you?
Aside from fewer opportunities for showing if the lockdown continues, there are likely to be long-term effects as well. The same CEBR research has predicted that, on average, a home in the UK will lose £30,000 or more of value, with average prices at risk of dropping below £200,000. While this may be good for prospective buyers who previously could not afford a home, it also means that sellers may choose not to put their homes on the market, but wait for home values to rise again.
An even larger effect will be the reduction in the pool of buyers, as those who lost their jobs during the economic shutdown will not be in the market for a home. If your real estate business is located in the hardest-hit areas, such as Yorkshire, Humber, or Northern Ireland, expect business to stay slow even after the lockdown is lifted.
How can Estate Agent Software help your real estate business in these times?
Estate Agent Software not only tracks applicants, viewings, and sales; through the use of multi-listing services, you can network with other agents. Not every area is equally affected, so by sharing listings among a network of agents, you can be matched with a prospective customer in a different area looking for an opportunity to relocate.
But we can’t show during the lockdown!
Fortunately, as technology advances, videoconferencing is not just for business meetings anymore. With the right Estate Agent Software, it is possible to produce a high-quality virtual showing. In this manner, you can show a property without the need to meet the client in person.
The pandemic has created a new trend. Nowadays, you can close real estate deals using only virtual showings, often using a 3-D capture so that prospective buyers can view the property inside and out from every angle. This trend is likely to continue even after the lockdown is lifted, as people remain reluctant to allow multiple prospective buyers in and out of their homes.
The only constant in this world is change. Businesses that survive are those that adapt to a changing world. There is no way to predict how long the effects of COVID-19 will last, but you can adapt by leveraging existing technology. As long as there are people, they will need homes. The real estate industry will survive; and with the right strategy, you and your business can survive, too.