Coronavirus and Charleston Real Estate
By Joy Gerardi, GRI, ABR • Carolina One Real Estate
During one of our last sales meetings before the quarantine began, there were about 50 Realtors at the meeting. Some of the agents were already a bit alarmed and were staying home as a precaution, and some of them were sitting there rolling their eyes about this “silly flu”. But the one question that all of us were thinking was, ‘What will this pandemic do the Charleston real estate market?’
It was about a week after that meeting that the nationwide lock-down was announced. The uncertainty of the time was now upon us, yet we were still busy! Several of us had a few deals still in the works and with the inspections completed, we could negotiate, manage repairs and close deals from our homes. Were we really going to just stop working? Later it was announced by the government that Realtors were designated as “essential workers”. Home buying and selling was not stopping.
I really don’t know what we were expecting, but we certainly were not expecting the Spring 2020 housing market to be at a record breaking high in Charleston’s MLS. But it was, and it still is today. During the weeks from April 27 to July 17, our MLS recorded an increase between 10% to 49%…with an average increase of 24%. We had 5 weeks with over 500 homes sold. All of this while we had the lowest home inventory we have seen in a long time.
So…what does that mean? Charleston is in a healthy market, but more homes are needed right now. Buyers are taking advantage of the lowest mortgage rates in our history. Sellers are seeing multiple offers on their listed homes. Break this down to a homeowner in our 3 communities. This is a great time to sell or to buy. I especially think of the homeowner who has lived in their current home for a few years but is now starting to out-grow it. This is a great time to upgrade to that family home that you will raise your children in for the next 15 years or more. You can use the equity in your current home to be the down payment, get a great value for your current home, and take advantage of a low interest rate to get in your dream family home.
We really do not know how this coronavirus pandemic is going to change our day-to-day lives, but we are certain that it will. Going forward, our homes will likely become an even more important part of our family.
Joy Gerardi is a Realtor and Broker Associate with Carolina One Real Estate