Coronavirus: Selling A Home During Shelter-in-Place
With the new safety concerns and government orders, what is possible when it comes to real estate? Can you still buy or sell a home during these times? Let's get the latest from Angie Cole.
With the impact of coronavirus causing communities to shift to shelter-in-place or stay-athome orders, what does this look like for those in the process of buying or selling a home?
Angie says to take one day at a time. Depending on the community, the rules are a bit different but homes are still selling. Whether done by zoom meeting or following up with the contract via email, Angie and her team are committed helping their clients while also limiting exposure for the safety of everyone.
Can you really still sell your home even under these new stay-at-home orders? Believe it or not, there are still many possibilities when it comes to marketing and selling your home. You may have to take your own photos or give video walkthroughs, but you are able to sell your home online. Remember, during these shutdowns, more people are stuck home and looking online. And even before this all started happening with coronavirus, there were many people who bought a home without ever physically walking into it.
When it comes to appraisals, some mortgage companies are loosening some of the requirements. Some are being done with drive by appraisals where the comparables are more straight forward. Adjustments are also in process of being proposed in Congress to allow remote notarization.
With more real estate work going online, which search terms seem to draw more attention? Farmhouse, rustic, Scandinavian, vintage, and industrial are all words that describe the style of homes and were top choices according to a real estate website. Angie shares her thoughts on each of these terms and Walter shares some of the least searched homestyle terms.
Listen to the full episode or click on the timestamps below to hear more about how to real estate is adapting in light of coronavirus.
0:43 - New rules due to coronavirus such as shelter-in-place are changing things, how does that impact Angie’s business?
5:15 - What changes have Angie’s team made?
7:03 - Can you still sell your home when in shelter-in-place?
9:36 - Several businesses are adapting to still be operational during social distancing.
11:49 - Mortgage appraisal requirements are being eased to accommodate coronavirus restrictions.
14:06 - National Association of Realtors is urging Congress to allow remote notarization.
15:22 - Real estate website analyzed search data on google to find out which home styles draw the most attention.
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Note: This is an automated transcription. Please forgive the robots as they tend to make some (a lot of) mistakes...
Speaker 1: (00:02)
It's time for the savvy real tour podcast. I'm Walter Storholt alongside Angie Cole, the owner and broker in charge of ACole Realty serving you throughout the triangle, teaching you about the ins and outs when it comes to buying or selling a home. You can find the team online by going to eight Cole realty.com. That's a C O L E [inaudible] dot com or by calling (919) 578-3128. That's (919) 578-3128. And now it's time for one of the top real tours in the triangle, Angie Cole and the savvy real tour podcast. Angie, great to be with you once again on today's show as we, uh, kinda continue this interesting world of living in various States of locked down and shelter in place and whatever other phrases we want to use for our limited movements and restrictions. But Hey, we can still host the radio show remotely with one another. So we'll keep things ticking here on the air. Right? Exactly. Let's keep it going. How have you been managing all of these different, uh, you know, rules coming into place, cause I know you serve obviously such a large geographic area, you and your team and different cities and different counties kind of get different rules and things implemented. How do you adjust all of that?
Speaker 2: (01:17)
Yeah, honestly we just take it day by day. Right? Um, that's all we can do. Um, and, and stay positive about it because, you know, our, our main goal is to service our clients, you know, those that are already under contract and you know, those who are looking for a new home or trying to sell. So we're just trying to tweak the way that we do business. Um, the best that we can, you know, and um, you know, certain areas it is really turnpike County, right? As far as what we can and cannot do. So, um, certain areas, you know, business just the same, but we are trying to limit our exposure. So, you know, if a buyer clients are open to us, you know, either zooming or FaceTiming them and to a showing, you know, of course that's preferred. If we can do a virtual listing consultation that's preferred, you know, it's just to keep everyone safe and healthy. But yeah, I mean we're, we're there to still service our clients and you know, we're, we're still selling. We are,
Speaker 1: (02:11)
yeah. On a Tuesday night this week I went to pick up some medicine for a neighbor just because they're older and just, you know, trying to limit their exposure. So went out and picked up some meds for them at the pharmacy. And then while I was out I was like, yeah, we're kind of running, not super low but a little low on hand soap. So I thought I'd pick up a couple of extra hand soaps. I thought toilet paper was the only thing that had really been run out of town that that enhanced that time I was behind, cause it's been about a week and a half since I had, you know, been able to, I had gone out to the grocery store other than to get warriors one time I'm kicking myself for all of those little hand sanitizers I always receive from like builders and yes, I know we just chunk them because I would never use them.
Speaker 1: (02:55)
That's right. That's right. So yeah, I think we're, I'm the same way you'd get them in like your Christmas stocking or something like that. It'd be, you know, like you'd have these little hand sanitizer bottles that then just kind of get tossed to the side or whatever. But anyway, I went to eight stores and could not find a single bottle of hand soap. So that's kind of what, that's kind of, when it hit me, like that was the first time I really gotten depressed and this whole thing, I was like, man this was a really waste of a couple of hours of driving around looking for this stuff. And just like you started to realize, I think now, you know, like if you pull up outside of a pharmacy or a grocery store and it's packed and it's got a lot of activity, it doesn't mean, Oh well they're not going to have anything left. That means they got something. So go in and if you pull up and it's empty, then nobody, it means they're already alluded out, nothing's left in it.
Speaker 2: (03:43)
I'm actually finding that, I feel like the pharmacies and the CVS is a Walgreens, they have more essentials there versus the grocery stores. Like we've actually found tool of paper and paper towels and stuff at the pharmacy is where, sorry, sorry, I'm not going to tell y'all which one and I'm just checking. Uh, now we, we were proactive there and we, uh, we got our shipment a long time ago, so if anyone needs an extra roll, let us know. We can help out.
Speaker 1: (04:09)
It makes sense though, because they don't have as much shelf space. So, yeah, they would probably have more in [inaudible]
Speaker 2: (04:14)
probably in stock in the back and just slowly, yeah.
Speaker 1: (04:17)
Set of one big massive dump out on all the shelves and then it's gone. They're putting a little bit out, it gets taken up and they put a little more out. It's taken up. I mean, that would be my guess as to why that's happening, but
Speaker 2: (04:26)
yes. Yes. So it's, uh, it's crazy. It's crazy. That's for sure.
Speaker 1: (04:30)
It's a strange world for all of us and we're certainly thinking about everybody that's from a job standpoint, certainly been impacted by this. And you know, we hear on the radio, we try to, it's one of those weird things, Angie, where we're trying to make the best of it. And with that comes a little bit of joking about it and trying to keep it a little bit light so that because every day could get very, very heavy if you're not careful, but at the same time, for other people, it's going to impact them much more than it might impact the next person. So, yeah, that's tough when there's that, uh, you know, depending on what restrictions get put in place, who gets impacted and all those kinds of things. So it's definitely a bit of a weird time right now, but we're going to do our best to address it here on today's show from a real estate perspective.
Speaker 1: (05:13)
And talk a little bit about that. Let's start off the show, just talking a little bit about Corona virus, a couple of news stories and headlines about how it's impacting the industry nationally and want to get your opinion on maybe locally what we're seeing as well. So I know, Angie, you mentioned a couple of things, just kind of off hand that you've changed a little bit with, you know, taking it day by day from a business standpoint, trying to do more video tours or meetings and those kinds of things. Anything else that you're doing as a business to navigate through these different levels of lockdown and what kind of impact are you seeing on the market right now?
Speaker 2: (05:44)
Yeah, yeah. So, um, first of all, as an office, you know, we, we actually started the work from home. Goodness we can have two weeks ago. Um, I can't remember the dates. They're all starting to run together, but we're definitely practicing social distancing. Uh, sure. You know, it was actually, it was neat and funny and kind of cool how we hosted our first team meeting as a whole team. So we had 15 of us on a zoom call and we, we definitely took a picture trying to look like the Brady bunch. So, you know, we have to, you have to make the best out of everything. Right. Um, so, you know, we're definitely, you know, trying to stay as healthy as possible by limiting exposure into our office. And then from there, you know, when it comes to listing appointments showing, you know, if we can do those virtually, meaning we can do those zoom calls, we can do by FaceTime, you know, that is preferred. Of course, just limiting the amount of times we're touching handles, door knobs, that sorta thing. You know, that's what's important. We just want to keep everyone in the public. You know, safe, healthy and stop the spread of this. So, uh, we are doing what we need to do to still represent our clients, but definitely limit that access.
Speaker 1: (06:49)
Yeah, it's a fine line of keeping the business running as much as possible and helping people out while also following whatever rules go in place. And I think we're all navigating those waters to an extent. So maybe here's the million dollar question, can someone still sell their home if they're in one of these lockdown areas or knowing that it's stemming? Is it even possible right now
Speaker 2: (07:11)
is, um, you know, we will have to tweak some things that might not be quite the amount of exposure or perfect, you know, like we typically do our marketing, but first of all, like I mentioned, when it comes to the listing presentation or consultation, um, we can do that by a zoom meeting if you're not aware of zoom. Zoom is amazing. It's a video, uh, meeting online. We can even just talk over the phone. You know, there's many sellers that we assist that we never have the opportunity to even meet because they're not local. And we just do those conversations over the phone. So, um, that's no big deal. Nothing's really changing there. Um, but then, you know, as far as photography and we might have to ask the seller to become a photographer, right? Because photography is going to stop, you know, we won't be able to get our measure in there, but we will do our best as far as photography goes.
Speaker 2: (08:00)
We can do, um, you know, video walkthrough. So that's super helpful and just everything is going online, going virtual. Um, so yes, you know, people are still buying homes even though there are locked downs. You have to remember, you know, when there's a lockdown, people are stuck to their homes. Actually the, uh, amount of usage on internets on phones actually is probably going to skyrocket. So there actually might be a lot more people looking out there because they're looking online. Um, so they will see your home and there are many people were, first of all, people might say, there is no way I'm buying a home sight unseen. But before all of this chaos and before the Corona buyers, they are many buyers that buy a home site unseen. You know, maybe they're in a different state, they're unable to come to the area to actually physically look at the home. Um, and all the time we help clients to go under contract sight unseen. Um, uh, once again, we're sharing pictures, we're sharing, we're doing what's needed to help them to make that decision. So yes, you can still sell your home even if there's a lockdown.
Speaker 1: (09:02)
Sounds too, like you've already had kind of some experience, a trial run at this whole remote selling thing. It's something that you've had as a part of your business for quite some time.
Speaker 2: (09:11)
Yeah, I know it, I think it, um, at first scares us as real estate professionals or just any type of professional, you know, what does that mean for my business and for my company. But then I, you know, start to think about it. I'm like, wait a minute. We were already doing a lot of this stuff for certain clients because that's what was needed, you know, so, um, we can, they've been along. Yeah. Yeah. So we can make things still work for you even in a lockdown.
Speaker 1: (09:36)
It's kinda like a, I saw this thing with Domino's, just free free plug for Domino's here. Um, but they are, you know, and I, and I, and I don't take this the wrong way folks, when I say capitalizing or, um, you know, taking advantage of, you know, this bad situation, obviously, I don't mean that, I just mean they're adapting and looking for opportunities to stay in business and stay viable. To me, that's nothing to be, you know, afraid of talking about by any means. And so they said, all right, well, we need to adapt to this new world. So they actually have put out some marketing that shows, Hey, here's how we've changed our entire process so that you feel comfortable still ordering pizzas and they illustrate exactly how they're going to pull off the pizza out of the oven, slide it directly into the cardboard box.
Speaker 1: (10:25)
And so the pizza never gets touched by anybody. And then they're now starting to apply seals to the box so that, you know, it didn't get opened or anything like that in transit. Then they have a like I guess a clean surface that they set. They come to your front door, they set their, like a mat down of some sort and put the box on the mat. Then they back away, you pick up the box and say goodbye, close your door. Then they walk back up to your door, pick up the mat and walk away. And so they actually like put out marketing and a graphic showing how they're adapting to what's going on here.
Speaker 2: (10:56)
No, we all, all businesses are, you know, being affected probably in some way, you know, from this. And um, you know, in order to keep afloat, I mean, you gotta do what you gotta do and people still need any pee, eat pizza. Right. Um, so I think that's smart, smart marketing for them.
Speaker 1: (11:13)
If you have any questions for Angie Cole about buying or selling your home. A quick reminder, you can always get in touch by calling or texting Angie at (919) 538-6477 that's (919) 538-6477 or get in touch [email protected] that's a C O L E realty.com. Angie, you know, that was one of the articles that I read this week about some of the changes to the real estate injury. Multiple companies are reporting indeed a surge in demand for video home tours. And so I think that's a pretty obvious one there. Yes, definitely. Something else that jumped out here, you know, mortgages have been the news with a different, you know, rate fluctuations going on right now. But just from a qualification standpoint, some mortgage giants are easing appraisal requirements to help the housing market fight through the challenges of Corona viruses. And um, you know, one of the big things is I guess alternatives to interior inspections in some cases. So have you seen that trickle through yet to the triangle area?
Speaker 2: (12:14)
You know, I haven't, um, I haven't noticed it yet, but we have to also remember whenever it comes to appraisals, you know, other than it being scheduled, I don't know exactly how in depth and appraiser's going right, but that is exactly right. I was actually just speaking with one of my lenders this past week about that. And they said that first of all, um, the count of appraisers that they have on their books has dropped by about 50% because some appraisers, you know, just will not step foot in someone else's home, which I appreciate that. I respect that. But that means the other 50% are just busy, busy, busy, and you know, there's too many homes closing too much business and not enough appraiser. So they are allowing or they will start allowing for more drive by appraisals. It's called, um, instead of actually going into the home and taking all of the notes.
Speaker 2: (13:03)
Um, so for the easier homes where comparables are very straight forward, uh, they're being a little bit more lax on those. On top of that. There's also, um, talk of employment of verification that they're being a little bit more, you know, relaxed on are meant to get someone from like HR on the phone to confirm employment. You know, they will use the very most recent pay stub as verification or an email for verification just because typically a employment verification is the very last call before everything is said and done. They have to make sure that person is still employed, the buyer still employed before they fund the loan. Um, and so they're becoming, again a little bit more relaxed on that end as far as employment verification. So, you know, the, the lending world are these, like you said, the mortgage giants are doing their part to just push business along still, you know, help the economy and sense of, you know, things still closing and people get into homes.
Speaker 1: (14:01)
Yeah, that's a great point. Good to see them making some adjustments and changes. And uh, last but not least, one other headline I thought I'd throw atJ and G. NAR, the national association of realtors is urging Congress. So as of the last we've checked, this hasn't gone through, but they're urgent Congress to allow remote notarization in States that don't already allow it. And that could help make transactions even more remote than they already are.
Speaker 2: (14:25)
Yeah, exactly. Because right now, for example, when it comes to selling a home, you have to get what's called your seller docs notarized. So you have to go in person in front of a notary and you have to get all those notarize. Same thing when it comes to buying a home, you know, right. In, in North Carolina, we are an attorney state. Every state's a little bit different, but our closing attorneys actually have to notarize and be there in person to get everything signed off. And so right now there's, there's no social distancing right now to make closings happen. We do have a recording and a lot of our counties, uh, which is wonderful, so the attorneys don't have to actually go in to record. So it can all be done electronically. But yes, that would be amazing if they could, you know, get that passed to allow remote notarization
Speaker 1: (15:12)
that's a great point. And, uh, uh, okay. I lied. I have one more. I have a non coronavirus story for you. Okay. All right. So just, just to switch gears for a moment, but while we're in this headline mode, this one just caught my eye, uh, as well. This UK real estate website analyzed search data on Google to find out which home styles draw the most attention in the United States. So I guess ignore that it's a UK company cause it was U S search data that they were using. But in any event, uh, leading the way was a farmhouse with 318,000 searches per month. That doesn't come as a surprise, right?
Speaker 2: (15:51)
Not at all. Yeah. I actually, I work with an amazing builder, Ron tutor with Glenwood builders and his style is typically more of the farmhouse style. So it has all of the newness, right? Not the tutor style. The, I know that good jokes, Hey. Yeah. But, uh, the now you just threw me off. Goodness. Um, but most of his styles are more of the farmhouse styles and um, you know, so they have the newness but also just that kind of, you know, older, you know, just Southern feel. Um, very charming and Oh my goodness. I mean people just love, love his bills, you know, they, they typically sell very, very fast. Um, but it's, yeah, I can see why that's one of the top searches.
Speaker 1: (16:30)
Yup. Still certainly very popular. Rustic came in second. Uh, it had 190,000 searches. So again, a good bit behind farmhouse but a, a good bit in front of the third and fourth place. And then what was interesting, I thought third and fourth place were almost identical in terms of how many searches for them slightly ahead in third place with Scandinavian style. And then vintage was in fourth place is Scandinavian style.
Speaker 2: (16:56)
I didn't, I don't even know what Scandinavian style I guess. I think Ikea when I think Scandinavia, you know, very clean like clean lines, whites maybe I would just go with modern. I know as far as like if a buyer was explaining the style they are looking for, I don't think that I've ever heard of Scandinavian. Interesting. Like he is very modern, sleek lines, modern contemporary, like, yeah, that's what I'm thinking. Uh, yeah. So I'm just, I'm surprised that that word in general as one of the top searches, but right next to it being vintage. So to me, I think of, when I think of the word vintage, I automatically think of like furniture and clothing. I don't think of homes. So yeah. Yeah. As being like a style. So interesting. Industrial in fifth place by
Speaker 1: (17:50)
the way, which that's, you know, I guess in, um, that's, you're like really popular, right in like restaurants and that kind of thing. Like that industrial style where you see the exposed piping and duct work and a lot of that kind of stuff. And I can see that, I think from just watching lots of HGTV over the years, lot of like bigger cities, you know, this is nationwide, you've got a lot of lofts and condos and things like that where people love that more industrial style. So yeah, I can see that being pretty funny. Look, I love it. Yeah. The least searched home styles getting in and entire 730 searches per month combined between the three of them were ones that, I'm not even one, I'm not even sure how to pronounce it. Direct trois, direct to direct to direct to to us. I had no idea that one and modernist and Omarion American colonial, not very popular.
Speaker 1: (18:42)
I could see that. Yeah. I mean it's still beautiful, but it's just not 2020, right? Yeah. Not 2020. So anyway, I thought that was kinda neat. Sounds like that data, uh, does resonate for the most part, at least in the, the top when they're with the farmhouse. Certainly with us locally here as well in North Carolina. So thought that was an interesting one for sure. And you've been listening to the savvy real tour podcast. I'm Walter store Holt alongside Angie Cole. She's the owner and broker in charge of Aiko Realty here in the triangle. And if you have questions for Angie, we invite you to go online to a Cole realty.com listen to past podcast episodes on the website. Read the blog and all the great information, including the option to find a home right there on the website. That's a Cole realty.com and you can also call Angie with your questions. (919) 578-3128