It’s no surprise that throughout the pandemic consumers attitudes and behaviours have changed. COVID has impacted our spending levels, our choice of items and our confidence. Many ‘non-essential’ items have been pushed to the back, while an increase in essential items like food, hygiene and cleaning products have flourished. It’s safe to say consumers have gone back to basics for the majority of their day-to-day lives, but can the same be said about large purchases – like property?
Research indicates the property market has come out unscathed.
The market has experienced an annual price growth more rapid than anything seen in almost two decades. Prices in Sydney alone have risen by 15 per cent over the past year and Melbourne prices have increased 9.7 per cent this calendar year, according to the latest data from CoreLogic.
With record low interest rates and an increased amount of savings from a reduction in spending, the property market has been booming over the past 12-18 months. More specifically, there is a pattern for what people are looking for in their future home. What once might have been considered a spacious property for a homeowner is no longer appropriate to juggle personal, professional and recreational needs. Recent research shows that the top three features people look for in a property are: Home office (52%), Study area (47%) and a pool (43%). Backyards and larger kitchens also came closely after.
Consumer’s needs may have changed, but are people afraid to buy or sell during the pandemic?
We’d say NO!
With on-going border closures and lockdown restrictions coupled with a booming housing market, more people are making the biggest purchase of their lives based on video tours. Yes virtual property tours, alongside good contracts and providing potential buyers with an outline of the features of not only the property but the neighbourhood are making an impact. Previously, buying a property unseen was something done only by investors, or people moving from overseas but it is becoming an increasingly viable and a timely option for many prospective buyers.
Adapting to the ‘new normal’ may require some time.
Naturally, many buyers and sellers may feel hesitant with either buying or selling a property virtually, however with high-quality video capabilities and a detail oriented agent who understands your potential concerns, together with your objectives the process might not feel so daunting. It is a large financial decision for both sides, and without physically stepping foot into the property, the question may arise – will you get the best price or will you pay the right price?
Our expert market tips below may also assist you in feeling more confident with your decision:
• Do an inspection (and do it again): virtual walkthroughs are available when restrictions are in place, and vendors offer a one-on-one inspection when they can
• Do your homework: understand if the valuation is accurate and what other similar properties in the area have sold for recently.
• Understand your financial capabilities: know your limit, consider the oncosts and what you need for a deposit
• Check the contract: understand what is and isn’t included, and what conditions are in place.
Remember, not to rush into anything, It’s important to think rationally and avoid being swept up in emotions when it comes to buying a property but don’t be afraid to take a chance! Once you have ticked the boxes and feel confident about progressing then the opportunity is yours.