POLK COUNTY, Fla. — While she might not be seeing the same drop off in business that other realtors in other parts of the country might be seeing due to the coronavirus outbreak, one Polk County realtor we spoke to said the current crisis is still causing a huge change in how she does business.
- New home sales nationwide dropped in February, sharper drops anticipated
- Biggest change? No more face-to-face interaction
- More Polk County stories
Realtor Jen Lay now works from home due to COVID-19 sweeping the nation.
“I thought this week would be a little slow and no, it’s not even close to slow,” said Lay.
In fact, she’s expecting seven closings by the end of the month.
“From March 9 to today [March 25], there’s 613 new homes on the market. So that shows that still means that real estate is really, really active,” Lay said.
While the work hasn’t slowed down, Lay said there have been a lot of changes in her day-to-day operations.
She now utilizes mobile device apps such as FaceTime or Zoom to virtually interact with homeowners wishing to sell their homes.
“The biggest change is that face-to-face interaction. I miss that. I miss seeing my people,” Lay said.
For those in the market for a home, she now uses FaceTime to show them homes instead of conducting walkthroughs or visiting traditional open houses, which were all canceled on March 23.
Despite the changes, Lay said it’s a great time to sell, and interest rates are low, too.
“If you want to put your house on the market, you need to do it right now," she explained. "There’s no inventory and buyers are still looking. It might take a couple days more than it would have because our average days on the market ever since this started went up,” Lay said.
According to a United States Department of Commerce report, the median price nationwide for a home sold in February was $345,900, up 6.3 percent from January. It’s unclear how the coronavirus will impact numbers for March.