How Can A House Sell As Is During Social Distancing?

Our Short Answer:

Selling your home as is during a pandemic through home auction and other virtual platforms is rapidly becoming a lucrative option. Selling houses without a walk-through and countless in-person tasks is unnecessary during times like this, making homes sell faster and easier! 

Selling a house as is now:

Selling your house is historically a stressful experience for the majority of people. A fortunate aspect for home sellers is that despite the struggles of a pandemic, selling a home can be much easier when all routes are turning towards virtual sale. Social distancing means that all parties previously involved in the traditional selling processes need to move to a digital method, which often can benefit the buyer’s time and return. 

This means that even when selling a house as is through a realtor, social distancing often either reduces crowded open-houses in exchange for digital tours. That way, potential buyers can still see the house themselves while staying safe.

Why It’s A Great Time To Sell A House As Is Now?

The entire sales process today is hi-tech, rather than high-touch.

Today, drive-by appraisals of homes, virtual home inspections, and settlements with minimum in-person interaction are the safest and most effective options, which happen to typically speed up the entire process.  

This may sound like there’s a catch, i.e. virtual sales mean less return, but that’s simply not true. You can still get a fair market value for your home!

The real estate market and property investments are proving to be recession-resistant. In fact, supply is struggling to keep up with demand. Because of the hungry market, now is a great time to sell a house as is, without necessarily having to make any repairs or alterations.

What Are Factors Potential Buyers Are Looking For When Purchasing A New Home?

More Baltimore city dwellers have been changing spaces because they want more breathing room than their city-sized apartment offers. Some buyers are looking for a home office and a spacious kitchen because they’re spending more time at home. 

Other buyers are looking for a backyard or a space to work out, as going to the gym is more difficult nowadays . 

Lavish extensions, modern kitchens and other upgrades are no doubt nice to have, but are certainly not as crucial as they once were. Taking care of minor cosmetic stuff won’t set you back tons of money, but it’s these things that matter when selling your home during social distancing.

If You’re Still Unsure If You Should Sell Your Home As Is Now… 

According to research shown by Mashvisor.com the housing market looks promising for home sellers:

There is a demand for property with a larger living area and more outdoor space. Homes in smaller towns closer to nature are also becoming more sought after”.

Housing inventory has decreased. There are fewer properties for sale because people are uncertain if they can buy another house to live in after selling. Having no competition can mean multiple offers. Research estimates a fall in housing price between “1.3% to 1.8% from now though to 2021”. It’s very possible that it’s better to sell now, rather than waiting. 

How Selling A House As Is Can Be Done At Auction  

Fortunately, years before the pandemic, many home auctions established digital platforms for buyers to bid on houses virtually. In essence, many Auction Houses were ready before all of this happened. 

Advantages Of An Online Home Auction:

  • They are safe during a pandemic. Everything takes place online from the time of an auction’s start to close. The home auction company manages paperwork so everything can be signed online. 
  • Home sellers are in control of the whole process, they place a reserve price before an auction takes place, a minimum bid. This is usually just around the market value of the home, to increase chances of a higher return.
  • Home sellers get exposure to a wider audience – often investors from all around that are used to and comfortable purchasing properties without visiting them.

The Two Types Of Home Auction

There are two ways a home seller can choose to sell their home; either through an unconditional or conditional online auction

An unconditional auction is defined by an exchange of contracts immediately after a closing bid is accepted. This is subject to the reserve price being met or exceeded. 

The conditional method of home auction in comparison, provides the buyer and seller 40 days to exchange contracts and finalize the sale. This method appeals to potential buyers because they have more time to get their finances organized. 

How You Can Sell A House As Is Without Physical Contact If You Wish To Go With A Real Estate Agent Or Sell On Your Own.

If you want to sell your home as is during these unprecedented times, you’ll need to adopt a sales strategy that embraces technology. 

The safest option during these times is a no physical contact option.

In some cases, buyers will make an offer without setting foot inside a home, but this circumstance can be few and far in-between.

Real estate agents are permitted to conduct open house sales in some states. However in other places they’re restricted, or at least discouraged. 

As such, digital open house sales are often encouraged, using Facebook Live or a video camera on a smartphone. Watching a video tour allows potential buyers to get a feel for the layout of your home. It may not be the same as seeing it in person, but it’s the next best thing. 

Ultimately, it gives them a clearer idea of whether your home could be a good fit for them. For the home seller, this also limits the amount of people coming through your door, protecting your own health.

Taking Photographs For Your Listing

If you aren’t comfortable with having anyone in your home, you can take your own listing photos with your iPhone or android camera. You can use these images to create a video slideshow. Here are a few tips for taking your own photos:

  • Use a tripod for stability; it also prevents your camera from shaking.
  • Avoid the glare and reflections from windows, mirrors and glass shower doors.
  • Make sure you do your photoshoot at the right time of day where there is plenty of natural light and less shadow.
  • Use props like furniture to show the size of unused spaces. For example, getting out your deck furniture to demonstrate the size of your patio.

Promote Your Listing On Social Media

During the pandemic, social media is the main way to spread any word of mouth news. You may find an interested buyer. On social media, listing with photos is free, unlike multi-listing services, and explores your own network and extended network – your friends, and your friends friends.

When Agents Want To Perform In Person Showings To Sell A House As Is

Home showings with large groups of people aren’t happening right now. However, traditional buyers often prefer to see a home in-person, sort of like a test drive. With this in mind, real estate agents have to take precautions to make sure all parties stay safe.

Real estate agents and their teams have to make sure that there are no overlapping showings.

Best practices during the pandemic are that masks are worn, shoes taken off, and hand sanitizer is at the door or available throughout the house.

If you are conducting a home showing, it’s a good idea to leave all lights on and doors open, even closet doors. This minimizes the chance of surfaces being touched. 

Restrictions For MD Showings Include:

  • In person showings or meetings must be by appointment only
  • There can be no more than 3 people (including the agent) at a property at a time.
  • Social physical distancing guidelines established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of remaining at least 6 feet apart must be adhered to

Delays In Real Estate Transactions

Delays happened all the time even before the pandemic. There are numerous things that can put off closing a deal. It could be pushed off because of changes in pandemic or travel restrictions, hold ups in scheduling appraisals or home inspections. 

There are many factors that can still happen regardless of this situation that are out of control if you are selling your home as is. 

Quick Cash Offer Sites For Selling A House As Is Right Now

If you need to sell quickly, and a cash-quick website catches your fancy, they’re always an option, but also still have to follow social distancing guidelines. 

The model of these companies hasn’t had to change too much, since there’s always been little contact in their process. However, just as before the pandemic, the same sacrifice arises – you may sell your house faster, but you’ll have to take a significantly lower price than market value, sometimes up to 50%.

How Do You Close, Selling A House As Is During A Pandemic?

It’s important during these times to limit interaction between people. There may be restrictions in place, but you can still close a deal for your house. Here are several ways you close a deal remotely. 

Whether you are selling your house through auction, an agent, yourself, or through a quick cash company, closing a sale without seeing the buyer can be difficult, and is often easiest when handled by an external entity. Once again, the primary benefit to selling at auction, is that the platform has already been set up to close remotely, whereas real estate agents and cash-quick sites are trying to catch up.

The Bottom-line:

During the pandemic selling your home as is in MD can be easier than you think, especially through home auction. With a platform already set up for a completely online experience from listing to signing closing documents, it’s simply the safest, and quickest option with a high return.