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Real Estate Trends During the Pandemic

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As 2020 has shown us the world can throw us many curveballs; and predictions can be as useful as resolutions. So in the spirit of the unexpected, I thought it would be interesting to talk about a few real estate trends that were accelerated by the pandemic and discuss whether they will fade or flourish in 2021.

1. Emotional value of Home increased: Trend will Flourish
The pandemic has pointed out how many things at home can be for us. Now more than ever buyers are wanting more space, a view, gourmet kitchens, home gyms, entertainment rooms, his/her/kids office, and outdoor open space nearby. Buyers are moving to resort towns typically deemed a second home market such as McCall, Sun Valley, and Driggs. I predict these communities will continue to be popular places to buy, but we will see some corporations move their employees back to part time office structure which would force some people to move back.

2. Consumers expect Convenience: Trend will Flourish
We already were living in an Amazon Prime world but now more than ever our clients expect the same buying experience when purchasing a home.
In 2020 we conducted many buyer consultations, listing appointments, and showed a lot of houses while our clients sat on their living room sofa in socks and sweatpants. Did it work? You bet it did! Clients desire an experience that gives them more control and flexibility when it comes to viewing a home, doing an inspection walk through, and attending their closings; and we don’t foresee this trend changing in 2021.

3. Speed shopping: Trend will Flourish
Stay at home orders created a lot of downtime resulting in a surge of buyers shopping online for their next home and creating saved searches on their favorite website. With inventory so tight, buyers are feeling frustrated because by the time they found a house they liked it was already pending. Clients are now getting increasingly wise to the saved search syndrome and the fact that everybody is seeing and competing for the same desirable properties. As a result we are pushing to find exclusive access to off market properties hoping to set our clients up with the backstage pass. Like speed dating, we are all realizing that you have to make an offer within hours of a property listing, even if the listing says sellers will review a few days later.

4. High density housing: Condos and Retirement Homes will Fade
From day one of the pandemic, we have seen high density housing such as retirement communities struggle with keeping their citizens healthy and safe. As homeowners’ needs for medical assistance increases, I predict many consumers will opt to stay put in their current home rather than move into a retirement community. The caregiver will come to them. Similarly, I predict condo ownership will be stagnant especially in second home markets. People have been quarantined in such a small space, those buyers might be leaning towards not duplicating a second home in a dense building such as a Sun Valley or Tamarack condo.

5. Realtors valuing community and team structure over Top Producer awards: Trend will Flourish
As you know, Trail 27 is a small group of stellar humans functioning in a team structure. We always have two agents assigned to every client so when the perfect house hits the market, there will always be someone available to show and write our clients’ offers. I believe this is so much better at meeting our clients needs and providing a better lifestyle for our agents. Solo agents are burnt out trying to juggle multiple tasks and missing opportunities for one buyer because they are busy with another client and are seeing the value of a team, so are consumers.

The bottom line is 2020 took some existing residential real estate trends and threw gasoline on them. Like so many other elements in our lives that have changed during the pandemic, it will be interesting to see if we go back to the status quo or have indeed entered into a “new normal.”
Here’s to a healthy 2021 for all!