I just wanted to check in and talk about Selling Real Estate on Oahu in these crazy times, with the threat of Coronavirus. Basically, a lot about selling real estate on Oahu has changed in only the past few weeks. But what definitely remains the same is our commitment to you, our listing clients. Below is a summary of the OAHU. REAL ESTATE. LIFE. video (above) on Selling Real Estate on Oahu & Coronavirus.
Real Estate Declared an Essential Business Service
- Both Honolulu Mayor Caldwell and Governor Ige have declared real estate services to be essential business services.
- For the time being, our team will continue selling real estate on Oahu, despite many business shut downs, because we are an essential service.
- However, the service we provide will change and adapt, using the best practices we can reasonably achieve as to social distancing, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), and sanitizing.
Listings in Escrow Are Handled Using Social Distancing, Etc.
- Inspections, appraisals, and pest treatments are still happening for listings in escrow.
- Service providers have implemented their own policies for safety, and the use of PPE and sanitization, which will vary.
- Some service providers are refusing to provide service to owner-occupied homes.
- Some service providers are prohibiting realtors and clients from attending inspections. Instead they are using written reports, as well as Skype, Facetime, and teleconferencing, where necessary.
- Some inspectors have stopped doing inspections altogether, due to personal health concerns, causing other inspectors to be very busy.
- Realtors are or should be avoiding any contact with inspectors or other agents/clients at listings.
- Personally, our team does not interact with the inspectors/appraisers other than ensuring they can get in. Lockboxes are also used more often. We wipe down lockboxes, door handles, light switches, faucets, toilets & seats, counters, and anything we can think of that might be touched at our listings. We either sit in the car or leave the property until service providers are finished. Afterward, we wipe down everything again and lock up, or have the service providers lock up. We try to wait days in between inspections if possible. If we have to speak with anyone at a home it is done using at least 6 feet distance.
- If the house is owner occupied, we treat the situation on a case-by-case basis, working with the seller and the inspectors, to help minimize exposure and risk.
- All of this has been working well! Everyone we have encountered seems very careful and incredibly professional.
Selling Oahu Real Estate with No Open Houses
- Recently, the Honolulu Board of REALTORS expressly prohibited Open Houses and has disabled the function in MLS.
- Realtors should NOT be holding any Open Houses and if you find one open, please do not attend.
- Open Houses could be risky activities for spreading Coronavirus.
Selling Oahu Real Estate Using Creative Marketing
- We are still effectively marketing many current listings without open houses.
- Hawaii Life Create, our in-house marketing team, has doubled down on its efforts to provide innovative and unique marketing for our listings. And, even before this, we had the best marketing in the business.
- We are using Matterport virtual tours, as well as professional photography and video, as needed.
- Matterport tours are not new and have been proven to be particularly effective tools for distance buying for many years. They show a property’s layout very well and may be zoomed in to an amazing level of detail!
- We anticipate fewer new listings will be coming to market in the near future, particularly owner-occupied listings, due to Coronavirus concerns.
- Listing now, is not necessarily a bad idea because there may be less competition. Even prior to the Coronavirus, inventory on Oahu was fairly low. We see prime properties potentially being in even greater demand.
- There will still be people who have to purchase, even during this unpredictable period, due to jobs, family, and other reasons.
Yvonne Ahearn and Ana Kuna, the OAHU. REAL ESTATE. LIFE. Team of Hawaii Life are available and ready to answer questions, address concerns, or help you manage any of your listing needs! Just give us a call at 808.721.8088. ~ Aloha
Connect With Yvonne Jaramillo Ahearn, Esq. (B)