It is time for another Southwest Florida real estate market update. It seems everyone I talk to asks how the real estate market is doing during this Coronavirus shutdown. During the last 7 days in Lee County 212 homes came on the market and 301 went pending. 289 closed in the last week.  This tells us that we’re pending and closing more homes than are actually coming on the market.

This also tells us that now is a great time to sell. You have less competition from other sellers, and homes are actually selling. This past week our team held 9 virtual open houses. All open houses received over 200 video views and our best one had 3,300+ people tuning in. You might ask how do we get so many people to view our open houses online. We will answer that later in the story.

As you can see from the graphs, inventory levels were falling pre-Coronavirus. In other words, this is not a new trend. More homes have been selling than what is coming to the market. This was indicative of a strong housing market locally and a strong economy. Given the shutdown, we have no idea what shape the economy is in today. What we do know is the housing market has remained strong.

Southwest Florida Real Estate Market Closed Sales by Year

We have official sales numbers through March, and you can see that 2020 was on pace to eclipse the previous 4 years. Some people feared we would lose closings in March as buyers became fearful of the unknown. That scenario did not play out. The question going forward will be how does the disruption affect the market going forward?

Nobody knows for sure the answer to that. Hopefully answers about when states will open back up and to what degree will become clearer soon.  What we do know is that it is a good time for sellers right now! It’ always more fun to sell when there is less competition from other sellers.

Buyers still need to buy, and when you see low inventory and buyers buying sight unseen, you know it’s a good time to sell.  What will happen when this virus thing is over and all those sellers who did not want to put their home on the market during the pandemic decide to sell?  Sellers will have more competition. It does not mean the market will be bad, it just means it may take longer to sell as they’ll have more competition.

Pricing is still a critical component. The market either accepts or rejects the price, and some sellers will never get that point regardless of if the market is up, down, or sideways. Proper pricing is important.

Back to the question about how we drive so many people to our online open houses. It’s all about the marketing. The Ellis Team are Southwest Florida real estate experts at driving traffic, whether it be old-school like print marketing or cutting edge like targeting buyers. Our brand is wide and our reach is deep because we have a large digital footprint to draw from.

If you are considering putting your home on the market today, you want it sold for top dollar and fast.  You want to limit the in-person showings. The faster we get your home sold for market value, the better it is for everyone. The Ellis Team digital reach can help you achieve that.

If you’d like to get a quick feel for the value of your home, visit www.SWFLhomevalues.com  It you’d like to setup a meeting with Brett or Sande to talk about the market, your home, or your options, we can jump on a video call and talk about it. Simply visit www.Virtual-Listing-Appointment.com and fill out the form, or call 239-489-4042 Ext 4 and ask for Brett or Sande.

If you are thinking of selling, let’s talk about your opportunity today versus waiting and figure out what’s best for you.

Good luck and Happy Selling!

See last week’s article “Virtual Open Houses Sells Homes in a Virtual World

Check out this weekend’s Virtual Open Houses

Today we’d like to show you how virtual open houses sell homes in a virtual world.  People may not realize that real estate is still selling.  In fact, I just checked MLS and in the last 7 days 224 homes went pending and 247 homes closed.  In fact, more homes went pending than actually came on the market in the last week, and Florida is under a stay at home order.

Virtual Open Houses Sell Homes in a Virtual World

How is it that so many homes are selling?  Top agents are adapting to market conditions.  We know some buyers still need to purchase and some sellers still need to sell.  The market didn’t go away, even though access and the way we show homes did.

This weekend the Ellis Team is hosting an online virtual Open House Extravaganza.  We’ll have 7 virtual open houses this weekend. The neat thing is we can do this during the week too.  Our Virtual Open Houses website www.Virtual-Open-Houses.com has links to times and locations of each open house.  Each open house will be its own event and also streamed live.  The beauty of this is customers can tune into the live stream, and the virtual open house can live on long after as a posted video.  If you miss one of our open houses you can go back and watch a previous open house. Virtual open houses sell homes and the Ellis Team wants to be at the forefront of that process.

Who knows what you’re going to see?  Because this is live and reality based, you might see some unexpected things.  We’re not saying this will become as popular as the Tiger King, we’re just saying you never know.  These live events will be streamed on our Facebook page www.facebook.com/Ellisteam as a live event.  Check it out or check out our virtual open house page mentioned earlier for a complete and changing schedule.

We’ve been getting hundreds of people attending live open houses.  Not only do we get the live views, there are many more views later through shares.  Who knows, this may set a new trend in how open houses are conducted.

Consumers also love it when we do a virtual open house from a gated community.  They no longer must worry about getting through a gate.  Consumers can see if the home and property interests them before deciding to give up time to go visit a gated community.

Our agents are getting better and better.  Each home is unique, and the internet or cell phone access can vary greatly by location.  They are stepping out of their comfort zone to bring you properties you can see.  In addition to our listings we can bring you new developments and new construction homes as well, so stay tuned for all kinds of opportunities.

Perhaps you’ll find a listing you love.  Perhaps you won’t.  Our agents also show homes virtually through our www.Virtual-Showings.com program.  The virtual showings program differs in that we have a virtual meeting with you and listen to what you’re looking for.  We then select properties that match your criteria and show those homes to you versus a live stream virtual open house.  The virtual showing is sort of like your custom virtual open house only we can do that live or through a 3D tour anytime day or night.

If all this is confusing to you, we’re still available to talk to.  If you’d like to sell your home, you should call Brett or Sande Ellis 239-489-4042 Ext 4 and we can show you all the tools we’re using to sell homes today.  Remember, 247 sellers closed this past week.  It might as well be you.

If you’d like a Free online instant estimate of your home’s value, check out www.SWFLhomevalues.com  It’s quick, free, and pretty darn accurate in most cases.

Our team is here to help.  Hopefully we’re providing the tools you need wherever you are, in whatever situation you’re in.  If you need to talk, we’re a quick phone call away.

Take care and stay safe.  This will all be over soon.  Maybe not soon enough, but hopefully soon.

See Last Week’s Article “Guided Virtual Showings Program Helps Buyers Tour Homes Safely

Be sure to check out our video on virtual showings too

Sellers can take advantage of our Virtual Listing Appointment

Last week we focused on keeping sellers safe using the virtual listing appointment program.  Today we’d like to talk about buyer’s safety. Guided virtual showings program helps buyers tour homes safely and efficiently.

Let’s face it, no matter what is going on in the world many sellers need to sell, and many buyers need to purchase.  Did you know that in the last 7 days 254 new homes came on the market, 240 homes went pending and 354 homes closed in Lee County?

So how can we show homes safely and efficiently in today’s environment?  The Ellis Team guided virtual showings program helps buyers tour homes safely.  The guided virtual showings program consists of several steps.

Virtual Consultation.  Our agents listen to what you’re looking for.  We ask detailed questions about the type of home you’re looking for.  Based on your answers we get to work finding the best properties that match your criteria.  An Ellis Team agent sorts through all the clutter to get you to the best homes at the best value.

Guided Virtual Showings Program

6 Easy Steps

We set you up on a favorite list whereby we email you new or modified listings each day that match your criteria. We want you to know about hot new listings first.  Speed wins and the best homes go fast.

We setup virtual showings online. Together we go through each of the best homes.  You tell us what you like and what doesn’t work for you.  Many times, we’ll have found the home on the first attempt, if we’ve done a good job of listening.  Sometimes we tweak the search a little bit, and sometimes we must go back to drawing board.  The neat thing is, because this is all being done virtually, the process can happen quickly.

Electronic Signatures– All of the purchase agreement can be created and signed electronically. The advantage to buyer is it can be done quickly which means your offer may get accepted before another higher offer comes in from another buyer.  Speed wins the day.

Home Inspections– Many home inspectors will inspect the home and send you a report along with photos and proof of items needing repair. Home inspector can even setup a virtual meeting to discuss items.  This limits people needed at the home inspection and keeps you safer with social distancing.  Sellers appreciate it too because there are less people invading their home potentially getting them sick.

Closings– Much if not all of the closing can be done remotely or by Fed Ex. You do not need to attend closing.  In the days of social distancing, why be present for something you don’t need to be?  You can focus your time on more productive things.  We’ll arrange to meet you with the keys to your shiny new home.

We Listen-Then Suggest

The key to the whole system is listening to what you’re trying to accomplish, educating you on the market, and helping you find and negotiate to a successful transaction.  We have lenders that offer low rates and zero lender fees.  Our team has access to so many resources.  We can discuss your needs and ways we can save you money and make the process easier for you when we meet.

To get started, simply go to www.Virtual-Showings.com or you can request a virtual consultation and virtual showings from any of our websites like www.LeeCountyOnline.com

If you’re a seller, you’ll be interested in www.Virtual-listing-Appointment.com Sande and Brett will use the same tools to get your home sold fast, and safely.

As always, we can always talk on the phone the old-fashioned way too.  You can reach Brett or Sande at 239-489-4042 Ext 4

See last week’s article “Virtual Listing Appointment Program to Safely List Your Home