COVID-19 & Real Estate? Here’s How to Keep Your Home Purchase Moving Along During a Pandemic
Published | Written by Pamela Briggs
COVID-19 & Real Estate?
Here’s How to Keep Your Home Purchase Moving Along During a Pandemic
Buying a home can be a complex undertaking in the best of times, but going through the process during a pandemic—that can add an entirely new level of challenges.
The good news is that real estate agents have been able to adapt rapidly to this new reality. And that means that you can still buy your dream home, even though that process may look slightly different.
From virtual showings to COVID-19 certification forms, here’s what you need to know to keep your home purchase moving along.
Take advantage of virtual tools
Thankfully, there are a plethora of virtual tools available today to make home purchases possible, even when social distancing and stay-at-home orders are in place.
The first thing you’ll want to do if you’re buying a house during coronavirus is hire a buyer’s agent. The agent will know what tools are available, and how to make the best use of them.
For example, many seller’s agents are hosting Facebook Watch parties for home walk-throughs in lieu of open houses.
This way, interested buyers can attend a virtual open house by logging on to Facebook to see a live walk-through, asking questions and getting answers in real time. This can be a great next step if you’ve found a home you’re interested in, but need to know more about.
Make sure safety comes first
When you hire your buyer’s agent, it’s critical to ask them how they’re approaching health and safety during this time.
Are they wearing masks, gloves, and booties when they meet with clients and other agents? Are they using virtual tools whenever possible? Do they bring disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizer to any in-person showings?
These things should be non-negotiables, especially since agents, by necessity, must interact with multiple different clients during the same period of time.
Be totally honest with your agent about what you can afford and how you want to proceed should your situation change
Given the financial uncertainty that so many people are facing due to the pandemic, you’ll want to talk openly with your agent about what you can safely afford, and what will happen should something change during the home buying process.
For instance, what if you’ve made an offer, but lose your job shortly afterward? Or, heaven forbid, what if you contract the virus, and are hospitalized for a lengthy period of time?
One way to protect yourself is with a coronavirus clause in your contract, which is becoming very common around the country.
The clause is designed to account for any processing delays with title searches, etc. and to grant extensions for things like home inspections and other necessary steps. It will also allow you to get your deposit back should you lose your job due to the pandemic.
Buying a home during coronavirus can feel different from a home purchase you’d make during “normal” times, but the end result is, of course, the same: a fabulous home that you’re excited to move into.
For more information or to get started on your home buying journey, give us a call at 909-631-0006 or download our FREE Home Buyer Guide!