• May 4, 2020

From every crisis follows inspiration, thought-provoking concepts and new ways of thinking. Following COVID-19 we’ve seen rusted-on habits smashed within days and with restrictions easing now is the time to maintain these fresh ways of thinking, which offer significant improvements on previous ways of doing business. In the real estate space, we made rapid adjustments to meet COVID-19 restrictions and to keep operational but as we slowly return to the more normal routine, we’re continuing to surge forward with game-changing ideas. Inspired by what we’ve learned through isolation and restricted business practice, we have seen clear ways to improve the experience for every client.

If we could say to any seller that we’ll only show your property to qualified buyers, would that sound of interest? If we could show a buyer that they can transparently see what other people are offering on a property, would that sound of interest? These are just two adjustments we made during COVID-19 and they’re changes that are here to stay. There is a host of other really simple yet more effective ways of helping people through the buying and selling process too. The uptake in digital meetings has been astonishing and connecting face-to-face without physical travel opens up all sorts of conversations and efficiencies. Perhaps the greatest learning from COVID-19 is that less is actually more and the forced downtime has been a wonderful period for many to self-reflect on what’s important.

We noticed an immediate uptick in confidence the day the Government discussed lifting restrictions and it’s become evident that optimism trumps pessimism. Our internal enquiry levels over the first weekend of May spiked when it was announced that real estate agents can return to open houses and on-site auctions, and we suspect this will only improve as we move through the month. The timing is quite interesting because as the real estate sector heads towards its typical hibernation over the cooler months, it looks almost certain we’re on track for different market conditions this winter. Listings will remain tight but as we exit out of this crisis, the improvement in confidence will filter through the property market, delivering a very unique atmosphere for this time of year.

While property prices have adjusted as a result of the economic challenges through COVID-19, there is no doubt our local property market has come through this better than originally estimated. There will be an economic lag along with significant behavioural changes which will keep a lid on growth, but as we all start to move towards a more normal work routine, we anticipate property prices will begin to stabilise. Critically though, the way in which we interact with our clients will be an improved process with a focus on transparency and efficiency.

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