The pandemic perhaps slowed the local real estate market but didn’t stall it.
Blue Springs-based ReMax Heritage real estate agent Joey Zarillo said the spring had been slower than average activity during the pandemic but started to pick up in May, and it remains a seller’s market.
“I did three deals through March and April, and typically then I do three per month, but in the last two weeks people have gotten a little more comfortable,” Zarillo said. “I’m now working on eight different transactions at once, and I’m happy if I’m doing three or four. I think there’s a lot of pent-up energy.”
During the pandemic, Zarillo says he’s seen about 100 listings per day going on the market, compared with 250 or 300 that he would normally see.
Much of the activity he’s continued to see and hear from other agents is for single-family homes under $250,000 – usually three bedrooms and two bathrooms. With one such listing, he had 38 showings over a Saturday and Sunday, with eight offers by the end of the first day.
“Those are the highest amount, about a 10:1 ratio (buyers to sellers) for those types of homes,” Zarillo said.
One adjustment area Realtors have had to make is single-person or family showings with no overlap. In addition, Zarillo said,
“Everybody has to wear masks, and we wipe everything down.” They also prep houses so customers don’t have to turn on a light or open a closet or cabinet. If possible virtual tours or showings can be used.
Zarillo said there will likely be some fallout in the market due to the pandemic, and the loan process might be different for some due to income changes, with public health restrictions starting to ease and the calendar nearing the time when many people arrange moves between school years,
“I think we’re going to rebound very quickly.”
On the building side, home construction has been allowed to continue in the metro area during the pandemic, and through March the Home Builders Association of Greater Kansas City said its year-to-date total of more than 1,200 single-family home permits metro wide was 54 percent higher than 2019’s first quarter.
“New home construction had a great deal of momentum built up prior to COVID-19,” Will Ruder, vice president of the KCHBA, said in an April release. “While the market has certainly been disrupted, our builder members say contracts continue to be written, communication between them and consumers remains active, and orders are being placed every day.”