It’s no surprise that our property market is facing some challenges, but with the city in lockdown, agents have been looking at new and innovative ways to help their clients reach their goals – and the results are impressive.
Belle Property’s Carolyn Wheatley has adapted to the situation and has buyers committing to purchase by using technology to allow buyers to view and experience the property. Here is some of her advice for buyers and sellers during lockdown.
What sort of virtual options have you been using to showcase property?
In our most recent sale, we offered professional photography of the property and of course a detailed floor plan, alongside a virtual tour filmed on a smartphone. Filming on a phone means it’s easy to share with clients and capture the full detail of the property.
What do clients think of virtual options for viewing and buying property?
Despite COVID-19, with so much information available online, these days most buyers get about 80 per cent ready to buy before they even attend a property.
While I’m sure most buyers would ideally want to physically walk-through a home, the virtual options that we now have, still give buyers a sense of what it’s like to be there, so we’re seeing qualified buyers using them, and still keen to make a purchase.
Are virtual options more useful for particular styles of property?
Virtual options can work a little better for land value properties, or recently renovated/built homes as these kinds of properties are fairly predictable in terms of knowing what you’ll get for your money.
Homes that need a lot of renovations or floor plan work can still benefit from virtual options but often these are the kinds of properties that buyers will still be keen to inspect in person so they can get a physical idea of the space.
What is your advice to sellers during lockdown and beyond?
For sellers, don’t let COVID-19 postpone your plans because properties are still selling right now. There may be a window of opportunity to sell before a large number of homes come on the market later. While there is a shortage of supply of listings at the moment, stock levels will start to creep back up, so the time to act is now.
What about buyers?
For buyers, consider this period a great opportunity to buy with less competition than you may normally encounter, which is especially appealing if you’re a first home buyer keen to break into the market this year.