The media lately is in an uproar about the latest Coronavirus pandemic. A typical coronavirus is a family of viruses that cause illness ranging form the common cold to the flu and possibly death. The most recent virus has people in a scare because there currently is not a vaccine for it and it has an incubation period of 1-20 days so people are walking around not knowing they have it. Over the last week, the world has seen some drastic economic shifts due to this virus. In the US, the stock market fell to numbers we haven’t seen since the financial crisis in 2008, and countries all over the world are shutting down venues and cancelling airplane flights. People are trying to protect themselves and regain some kind of control in the situation by pulling the reigns on where they do and do not go, what they do, and what they buy. In the last week, the Real Estate Market has seen a pull back as well, so we just want to talk a little about whats going on.
The media isn’t your friend and it needs a story. They for sure are causing a bigger panic which in turn is both helping and hurting certain industries. This virus is serious, but many doctors advise the best precautions are to treat it as if you are trying to prevent the flu. The fact that there isn’t a vaccine for this virus does make it extremely dangerous for those with a lower immune system who couldn’t fight off something like the flu or a cold. But an overall panic isn’t going to help anyone besides the drugstore and grocery stores like Walgreens and Costco. Where this takes us, is in areas such as Asia, their market has come to complete standstill. As for other parts of the world, like Europe and the United States, as people pull back on certain things, the real estate market is seeing a small hit. Especially on the coasts where more people have become sick, like in California and Washington, deals that were set to close, are falling thru. People want to see where this virus goes. The perception of where people think this virus is going to go has real estate firms, along with other businesses, see a loss in the last couple weeks. Mortgage interest rates dropped because of the fears associated with the virus and Chinese buyers who propel the luxury market around the world, have temporarily pulled back. It appears the only sector in the real estate space has been self storage.
China is the world’s second largest economy, and countries all over thee world rely on them for supplies. What happens over there is bound to affect the rest of the world. With China being the source of foreign demand for real estate, along with an overall panic of domestic buyers as well isn’t helping sales. Fair Housing laws protect against discrimination, but buyers are looking at any means to keep themselves safe. They are scared, and are acting based on that fear thats being fed to them. The best way to move forward is to find the ways in which your company or real estate business can protect people. How can you eliminate their fear? How can you market yourself to eliminate risks. The best medicine here is education. Educating yourself and not letting the media control where this story goes is the answer. Educate your clients, the buyers and sellers of the truth, but eliminate the panic.
The media can cause an overall panic on the macro level, but its our responsibility to bring the peace at the micro level. The dips we are seeing now are being caused by the media being able to control the story. As business owners, take back the power by reassuring people things will be ok. Advise them on how to be safe to avoid getting sick, and list the positives of why they are looking for a home in the first place. What was their motivation to move? Break it down much like the “fear” stage in any buying transaction. Reopen them to the reasons why they were looking in the first place. Eliminate the doubt with facts from your local market to ensure them that everything will be ok and you will see people shift their mindset. Tell them to get off the darn internet, nothing good is going to come from there. Stick to local statistics and the positives and you’ll give people a dose of reality that will give them the peace they looking to find.