When Critical Thinking Skills Vanish

We’re not sure what housing market the National Association of Realtors are referring to, but their headlines continue the “glass is half full” mentality which only serves to mislead the public in an effort to bolster their own organization—one which I might add, we are forced to be a part of, for better or for worse.

Take these headlines ripped from the email blasts by NAR just today…

This first one is a classic example. Sight unseen offers are growing from what? From when before the shelter in place order when no buyer in their right mind would buy a home sight unseen?

Then there’s this glass half full headline. All this tells me is that 75% of buyers do NOT accept the virtual buying scenario. And it’s not as if buyers really have a choice right now, so 25% took a leap of faith and dove in to the pool of house hunting no matter what is happening in the world.

What we do not know for certain yet, but soon will find out, is that these buyers are probably taking advantage of desperate sellers, and getting deep discounts on home prices. We’ve been hearing anecdotal stories from our colleagues of prices renegotiated downward immediately following the COVID outbreak.

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And lastly, the electronic signature platform Docusign’s CEO pronouncing that they have yet to see a slowdown. Wonder why? Since sales have dropped in San Mateo county by 78% this year compared to last year during the same period, from when the shelter in place order was initiated until today (one month).

Perhaps it’s because today, that is the ONLY way one can sign a contract, when before it was optional?

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Here are the facts. In San Mateo County during the period from March 17th until April 17th of this year, during the COVIT 19 shelter in place order, when it became illegal to show an occupied home, sales of single-family homes have dropped 78% over the same period in 2019.

The amount a seller has received from the few sales that have already closed, indicates that sellers are receiving on average 100% of their asking price. Not bad, all things considered, yet that’s a 5% downswing over the same period last year.

Truth be told, it’s too early to measure the damage that the mishandling of the COVID 19 outbreak will inflict upon the housing industry, or the economic health of the U.S. as a whole. 

We seem to be getting enough mixed messages from our leaders, and we would hope that the REALTOR trade organizations wouldn’t fall into the same trap, as if our fragile sanity relied upon drinking Kool-Aid from a glass always half full. 

Drew & Christine Morgan are REALTORS/NOTARY PUBLIC in Belmont, CA. with more than 25 years of experience in helping sellers and buyers in their community. As Diamond recipients, Drew and Christine are ranked in the top 50 RE/MAX agents nationwide and the top 3 in Northern California.  They may be reached at (650) 508.1441 or emailed at info@morganhomes.com.

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The information contained in this article is educational and intended for informational purposes only. It does not constitute real estate, tax, insurance or legal advice, nor does it substitute for advice specific to your situation. Always consult an appropriate professional familiar with your scenario.

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