What Do the Numbers Say About Moving During the Pandemic?
Covid-19 is here, and we can only hope that it slows down sometime soon so things can get back to normal again.
10:57 26 May 2020
In the meantime, we have to make the best of the situation and continue to live our lives in whatever fashion we can. For some, that means staying as isolated as possible to avoid getting sick. For others, they may still have to work or go out in public regularly. Some people may even still be planning a move. The question becomes whether right now is a good time to move or not. Let’s look at some facts and figures to get an answer.
The real estate market has taken a massive hit around the country and house prices are going to most likely fall. Were you planning on simply moving to a different home? You may be able to get a great deal, which would make it especially enticing if your current home wasn’t also losing its value. Of course, if you are looking at buying for the first time, then a move might make a lot of sense for you right now, provided you do it safely. You most likely won’t be able to actually view potential new homes, and will have to settle for virtual viewings. The number of actual listings is most likely going to fall as well, since people may not want to sell during the current economic crisis, which will temper those falling house prices. In fact, statistics show that new listings have dropped by 13% from the year before. You can expect that trend to continue during the summer as the true impact of the damaged economy is felt by homeowners. You should remember that effects will be felt differently in each market at different times. New York, the current hotspot for the pandemic in the U.S., has seen the largest decline in housing activity, and as other hotspots pop up around the country, those markets will be more affected as well.
One of the factors that was driving housing prices up before the pandemic were short-term rentals. Many people were purchasing second properties to rent out to travelers, which reduced the amount of properties available for rent or purchase. Now, with Covid-19 ravaging the tourism market, many of those short-term renters are looking for long-term renters to fill the gaps. You may be able to find great rental deals in furnished homes during this time as well.
Escaping the City
The fear of the pandemic has caused many people to want to avoid crowds. Most outbreaks have occurred in major cities around the world, which means that moving to a rural location could make sense. This might mean going just a few hours away to outside the city, but it could make all the difference when it comes to avoiding too much contact with other people when going shopping or working. A recent poll showed that approximately 33% of urban-dwelling Americans are looking to move to less densely-populated areas. It might be a good time for you to make this move as well, however you should make sure that the local healthcare system can handle an influx of people who might spread the virus and overwhelm it. Greener pastures can certainly be appealing if you are used to an apartment, or large crowds on your commute and sharing elevators with others.
As you can see, moving, even during a pandemic, is something that you don’t have to put on the back-burner. With housing prices likely falling, there is no need to wait if you find a home that you like. For those who wish, they can hire long distance movers to head out of urban areas and find attractive places to live at prices they can afford. Another thing to consider is that some of the products and services you need for moving may not be available, or things may be delayed due to the effects of Covid-19. Many businesses have shut their doors to keep their staff and customers safe, so you may need to do a little bit of extra shopping around to find what you need. There is no reason to think that you won’t be able to complete your move successfully, however.
The key is to make sure that when you move, you do it safely. This will protect yourself and your family, and the community as a whole. The world has changed, at least for the time being, but that does not mean that you need to put your home dreams on hold until the pandemic passes.