March 2020 Austin Real Estate Market Update
‘If uncertainty is unacceptable to you, it turns into fear. If it is perfectly acceptable, bitterns into increased aliveness, alertness, and creativity. When you become comfortable with uncertainty, infinitive possibilities open up in your life”
– Eckhart Tolle
I know things feel pretty strange these days but truly, I’m seeing a lot of opportunities out there. Opportunity to pause and reflect, to enrich our relationships, to better our health and yes, there’s even opportunity abound in the real estate market.
As you may have seen, the Austin Board of Realtors temporarily shut down home showings as a response to Austin & Travis County’s shelter in place ordinance.
Most of the Realtor and lending communities fully expect the Austin housing market to rebound quickly once the shelter in place ordinance is lifted. I’ve worked through a few market slumps and in my experience, Texas is last of the States to feel the effects, and first to recover – and even more so in Central Texas. That bodes well for us!
Interest rates are pretty volatile lately. For 30-year fixed mortgages, we’ve seen them dip to as low as 2.875%, jump up to 4% and then back down.
Homeowners, have you refinanced yet? I can’t stress this enough. If you have a mortgage interest rate of over 4%, we need to talk! A little more than an hour of your time can save you thousands of dollars
Home buyers, there’s no doubt the demand is temporarily depleted. Combined with lower interest rates, to me, that means the opportunity is still out there. Let’s consider an online purchase. I’ve sold many homes sight unseen and while I don’t necessarily encourage that for all, it is an option. Remember, Texas contracts have an option period that allows a buyer to terminate for any reason during a negotiating period without risking earnest money. Let’s consider prolonging the option period on your new contract from the usual 7-10 days to 21-24 days. That will survive the stay at the home ordinance and give us a chance to get inside the home, inspect it, deliver a timely close and beat the expected rush on homes when stay at home lifted.
Home sellers, believe it or not, it may not be crazy to move forward now depending on the property. Buyers are still looking and homes are still going under contract. Are you concerned about traffic through your home? Our virtual tour package offers prospective buyers a true online walk-through and even includes a virtual reality option. We’ve offered this package for years and yet most listing agents still don’t offer them. You will have a leg up with our virtual tour package, especially in times like these! You can check out our virtual tour package here.
Times feel uncertain for sure but there is opportunity abound. Stay safe and sane and let’s work through this together!
Best wishes to you and your family!