How Has the COVID-19 Lockdown Affected Real Estate?

Our market has slowed since the COVID-19 lockdown began, but not substantially so.

What do the latest numbers say about our Southern California market?

First a quick reminder: I sent out a slew of emails before the CARES Act was passed about the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan. If you’ve applied for this loan and received it, I welcome your feedback. Also, for those I referred to a small community bank that processes this loan faster than big banks, I estimate that 50% of them have been approved, and some already have funding in their account. 

Now, for this market report, I’ll share the latest stats from the area bordered by the 710 Freeway to the west, 15 Freeway to the east, 210 Freeway to the north, and 60 Freeway to the south. 

In this marketplace, there were 1,499 closings between March 1 and March 31. During March of 2019, there were 1,466 closings. Between March 20 and April 15 (the “lockdown period”), there were 722 new listings taken and 709 escrows opened. These numbers are lower than usual, but not substantially lower. There were also 1,065 closings that took place during this period, compared to 1,348 last year.
Since there are more buyers than sellers on the market, demand is at an all-time high.

I’ve fielded a lot of phone calls from sellers preparing to list their homes once this lockdown ends. I’ve also gotten calls from buyers who are getting pre-approved in anticipation of the market opening back up. In the meantime, video communication is the new normal, and I’m doing listing presentations via Zoom.

There are a lot of people filing for unemployment insurance, but there are many others who are looking to pick up where they left off after the lockdown ends. When that happens, interest rates should still be at all-time lows. FHA loans are as low as 3%, while conventional loans are between 3.5% and 3.75%. Since there are more buyers than sellers on the market, demand is at an all-time high. 

Until my next video blog, stay safe and healthy! If you have any questions or would still like to buy or sell a home, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I’m here to help no matter what.

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