It’s been more than a year since the COVID-19 pandemic began and it can sometimes seem like we’re no closer to a new normal than we were in March 2020.
There was a period last summer when national leaders were more optimistic and we had a little more free movement. But confident predictions of an end to life in the grip of coronavirus have proved nothing short of premature.
We’ve being somewhat fortunate in the property market – or at least more fortunate than some. The buying and selling of homes has been allowed to continue.
However the coronavirus crisis has still had a telling impact – not least the acceleration of a move towards online processes which were at first maligned by many of the old-school agents.
Despite the misgivings of the more traditional high street names, portals like Rightmove and Zoopla and online research tools such as Google Maps and Street View have become even more valuable assets in the armoury of both buyers and sellers.
Agents on the ground still have a place, of course. An expert view on how the markets are performing and help and advice on perhaps the largest financial transaction of your life are still as important as they ever were.
But, like so many other things in the 2020s, our reliance on online technology was probably only ever going to increase anyway – and COVID-19 has given it an extra shove.
Of course, if you’re seriously considering an investment in property, you’re still going to want to see it first. First-hand viewings remain a vital part of the buying and selling process and any good estate agent will still be there in the background to offer advice.
Just the same though, online images, virtual viewings, 360-degree photography and even internal and external drone footage can allow a vendor to showcase their home or offer a buyer a better feel for a property which seems to match the ticks on their wish list.
In some countries, online search tools not only allow you a helicopter view of the neighbourhood but can also tell you something about crime rates, the performance of local schools, typical traffic flows and even recent development in the area.
So, in summary, if you were thinking what a new normal of your own looks like but had written off your plans to move for now – don’t.
The property market is still functioning – in fact blazing a trail through new technology which is probably going to be as familiar as our smart phones to our grandchildren in a few decades’ time. Although there may be some additional challenges, either buying or selling a home is by no means impossible at the moment.
In fact, if you’re selling, it may well be you’ll find your buyer that bit sooner than you would during the predicted post-virus rush. If you’re buying, we still have plenty of options available right now – whether you’re on the hunt for a holiday home, a place to retire or even a buy-to-let investment for when the travel restrictions are finally lifted.
Just drop us a line or give us a call if you’d like more advice. We’re not just about the buying and selling of homes; we’re happy to help with the logistics, paperwork and advice before, during and after your move so feel free to get in touch. We’d love to help if we can.
Alternatively, feel free to browse our blog for previous posts you may find useful or, if you’d like to check out our portfolio, you can find details of properties currently on our books right here. You can also keep up to date with our Facebook page here.