Hello to Family, Friends, Clients and Past Clients. Everyone.
We're one week into the Shelter in Place order given by our Governor. I trust you and your family are staying safe and inside as much as possible. It's been a trying time for everyone and I've received many many calls and questions about my thoughts on COVID-19 from past clients, family members, agents, brokers and more.
On a personal note, I'm afraid mostly for my parents — especially my mother. For those that know me, you probably know my mother has Multiple Sclerosis. There's no known cure and treatments have varying degrees of success only at abating the symptoms. I won't get into the details. I will say that along with it comes a compromised immune system. Mild colds for people with MS are very bad colds, flu's that would keep most people down for a few days keep many with MS down for a week or more and could be deadly. COVID-19 for my mother is deadly and it's been on my mind a lot lately. My father, who’s half superhero, half saint and had always had my admiration, is in my mind also. I fall into the trap many do of thinking their fathers are larger than life. His superpowers include always always always doing the right thing, being unflappable (even now), and not putting the day away until the work is done. Which also means he’s rather unconcerned and keeping him inside the house instead of going to Home Depot, Meijer and other stores has been a struggle.
I've been blessed to spend more time on the phone with them than normal during this time and will not take having my parents alive, well, and in my life for granted.
What is most personal is most universal
Life has a tendency to make us busy. Too busy. Too busy to talk to that person we used to be friends with in high school or college with, your old co-worker that was relocated, your family member that might live just a few miles away but the time escapes us to simply say hi. I've made it a point over the last week to reach out to a few people per day and have found:
A friend from high school is an accomplished pianist doing concerts from 8-10 pm every night (please give him a watch!) He's been a joy to watch. Search Drew de Four in Facebook
My sister who is on a 9 hour time difference (she lives in Abu Dhabi) has cats who are doing well and a new husband who is driving her nuts with the shelter in place. I used to talk to her every few months, but now we talk daily. Her cats are well and her new husband is driving her nuts with the shelter in place.
A friend of mine Ken in Flordia I don’t talk to nearly enough has his hands full with his three kiddo’s at home and is enjoying the extra time away from work. We’re equally disappointed in the new 3 star wars movies.
Also, I’ve been reminded that communication through comments and likes on Facebook, Instagram and more doesn't replace a personal call.
I've encouraged those around me including my team of agents to reach out to people they haven't spoken to in years, friendships faded, family members they’ve lost contact with. I get the same questions from all of them, they ask; ask “what do I say?” What's most personal is most universal. Everyone is affected by COVID one way or another. Call and start with "Hey, I was thinking about you. How are you doing with all of this?"
The State of Real Estate: Homes are selling, the “How” has changed
Many agents have told people or shared on social media homes are not selling right now and that they should wait to purchase or sell. This is false. I think it’s because most agents haven't adapted, or don't know how to adapt, to our new home selling reality.
Over the last week, I've been receiving many many calls about the state of real estate from people who NEED TO PURCHASE. There are so many people whose leases are coming up, who are being transferred in or out of Michigan for work, who have already sold and need to buy a home. Buyers have flooded the Governor’s phone lines asking her to allow showings, otherwise those families will be homeless. Literally. She relented and is allowing people to buy homes. How?
Buyers: The Governor heard your plea
Virtual Showings for Buyers: Safety is our number one priority: To keep everyone, buyers and sellers, safe we've developed a virtual showing system where buyers can, and are, purchasing site-unseen. Before this we had about 1 in 20 buyers purchase homes without seeing them first. Typically these were corporate relocations who didn’t have the time to see a home in person before buying it. Over the last 7 days, 80% of the homes that accepted offers were done with virtual showings and inspections to be completed after the shelter in place is lifted. If you need to purchase and want to find out more about our virtual, safety first process, click here:
Sellers: Safe Virtual showings
Virtual Selling for Sellers: Safety is our number one priority. That said, many sellers are taking their homes off the market right now or deciding to delay putting them on to begin with. There are buyers that need to buy right now, and a torrent of buyers will be on the street looking at homes within hours of the current Shelter in Place being lifted. If you're considering selling, let's get your home on the market now.
Pro: No muss no fuss. No need to clean up the house for showings right now or leave the house for hours at a time to accommodate them. Virtual showings allow YOU to control the timing.
Pro: An already tight market just got tighter for buyers. We have a better opportunity now with low-interest rates and a lack of homes on the market to get your price. With many sellers believing homes are not selling, the number of homes that went on the market between March 22nd and 29th are HALF of the same week as last year. However the number of offers accepted is only down 15%. I've included more data straight from the MLS below.
Pro: Closing doesn't have to be immediate, and can be contingent on you finding your next home. We have several closings now booking as deep as August and September with clauses to push that back if needed if this crisis isn't resolved. Also we have “get out of jail clauses” to cancel the contract if there isn't a great home for our seller to buy.
Con: We may get an offer that isn't great. If that happens, we simply reject it.
I encourage EVERYONE who is considering selling in 2020 at any point to look into our Virtual Selling Platform. With low-interest rates and almost no competition, now is the time. This is the week to start the conversation about your future home sale.
We Need You: Simply put. We've had more sellers and more buyers reach out to us in the last 7 days than in any week of this team's existence. We need GREAT agents. People who want to do good. People who are looking for a fun, high energy culture.
If you'd like to have a chat about what working together could look like, or if you have any questions on how we've moved with the market we would love to talk with you. If you’re a current agent and have any questions on an upcoming closing WE HAVE ONLY HAD 1 OUT OF 70 DEALS FALL APART DUE TO THIS CRISIS) we're here to help. As an agent community, we're all in this together.
Considering a Career in Real Estate
Why not now? Now maybe the time to explore the 40-hour course, ask questions about what a career in real estate looks like and more. We've partnered with an online licensing course bringing the cost under $100 for the class and would love to chat. In addition, our 90-day Launch Program gets agents up, trained, understanding the real business of real estate that the class doesn’t teach you, and in production quickly.
In closing, thank you all for taking the time to read this extremely long email. Please don't hesitate to reach out anytime with any questions or anything else I can help with. *I think you need something here to connect back to the top if they read the whole thing. Maybe: Look out for a phone call in the next few weeks from us as we keep connecting with those around us to make sure everyone we know is safe and healthy.