It seems strange and unreal that real estate hasn’t shown a dramatic slow down in sales due to the Coronavirus crisis, but that is exactly the case for Miami-Dade County. Real estate hasn’t suffered as much as most of us thought it will. Pending contracts keep converting into closed sales and sales keep increasing month to month. With 465 closed sales of single-family homes in the first half of March and 557 closed condos, there was a 4.5% and 14.1% increase respectively compared to the first 2 weeks of February.
The future is uncertain, and even more with the COVID-19 situation, but what is irrefutable is that Miami residents are way better prepared for a crisis now that a few years back in 2008 or after 9/11. North Americans now save 8% of the income compared to 3.6% in 2008. In Miami, only 5.3% of houses worth less than their mortgage value, compared to 47% in 2010!
It is important to notice that there has been a real hesitancy from sellers to keep their units available on the market. There has been an increase from 3% to 19% from sellers removing their units of the market. The ones who keep their units on the market are most likely really motivated to sell. The same happens with buyers and lessees. Those who call asking for information nowadays are genuinely interested and are expected to end up closing a deal.
Real estate agents have been forced to change the strategy to minimize the impact of this calamity. New techniques, such as virtual open houses, mobile notaries, video property showings, new marketing strategies embracing technology and more!
It is undeniable that we are facing a health critical situation that will at some point end up in a financial crisis, however, we are in a better position to face the problem than in previous adverse circumstances. There is no way to know what will happen for sure, but for the moment the market hasn’t shown any drastic change that some other industries have shown, such as restaurants, hostelry, entertainment, among others. News is changing by the hour, but so far, so good…