Vibrant housing market is excellent for sellers right now
VANCOUVER — It’s been a wild and winding ride for so many since “day zero’’ of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the housing market is no exception. Agents at Cano Real Estate in Vancouver saw weeks of slower activity, but thankfully, are now working more than ever in a booming market.
“It’s been kind of uncertain at times, and a lot of adapting involved with new rules and regulations that we need to follow,” said Cano agent Josh Dannenmann. “I think everybody right now is just fortunate to be where we’re at. We’re back to some sort of normalcy where we’re showing properties, listing properties, getting people in the homes and still being able to work in a very hot market.”
Cano Real Estate operates in a unique way from other firms, with a team atmosphere at their office in downtown Vancouver. The office motto is, “Hire an Agent, Get a Team.” Since the start of the pandemic, they have been adhering to the restrictions in the workspace and now have Dannenmann helping manage their best practices.
Masks and healthy amounts of disinfectant are used at the office and at all properties that Cano agents show to clients. Dannenmann also explained how one of the elements that has been different for the showing process, in addition to social distancing, is only being able to have one person in the home at a time.
Even in cases where folks aren’t ready to see a property in person, Cano agents have been creative. Along with drone shots and high resolution interior photos, Cano Real Estate recently invested in a 360 degree camera that can create 3D images and a virtual tour of the property.
While they had been using the technology for larger properties pre-COVID-19, the tool has become vital for so many more properties now.
“We’ll use it (3D technology) once this is all said and done, it’s a time saver, really, if you’ve got a client that’s interested in multiple properties,” Dannenmann said.
After the initial few weeks of uncertainty, the market has exploded due to continued low interest rates and many zero-down loans for first-time home buyers, agents said. While much of the American economy now sits in an economic downturn, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research, the housing market is excellent for both buyers and sellers, but predominantly it’s a sellers market right now.
“Know what you want and when it comes up, talk with your realtor and try and get in there as soon as possible,” said Cano agent Aaron Johnson. “Chances are, it’s going to be gone in a couple days. Time’s of the essence in this market. I would just say try and be safe and be respectful.”
Johnson described this market as stronger than ever before, and specifically pointed to the homes priced from $300,000 to $450,000 as being especially lucrative at present.
When it comes to the new normal, Johnson compared it to large stores and shopping. Many of the same protocols and calculated risk is involved when presenting one’s home or looking at others, he said.
“If you go to the grocery store, you’re going to see some people with masks on, some people with gloves on, and then you’re going to see some people that don’t do any of it,” he said. “That’s kind of what I’m seeing with real estate. Their caution or their opinion, or how they’re dealing with COVID, is the same in real estate as it is at the grocery store.”
With real estate officially in the list of industries that can assume full work schedules in Washington as part of Phase 2 of the governor’s reopening plan, more and more Clark County properties are being listed and sold. Johnson is one of the agents at Cano Real Estate who is licensed in both Washington and Oregon, and said many of his experiences were the same, but Washington was stricter in the early days of the shutdowns.
“There was just so much unknown, whether you’re selling real estate or a school teacher or a line cook at McDonald’s,” Dannenmann said. “The market’s still been hot through this whole process, and now I’d say it’s on fire. I think as people have kind of eased up a little bit and realize that the interest rates are still super low and competitive, they’ve wanted to take advantage of the hot market and look at properties.”