Coronavirus is definitely the most dramatic of all the health scares we have experienced. It has impacted every culture around the world. Each day we are inundated with new information about the current infection and death numbers. Many people are now working remotely from home, other businesses moved to virtual transactions, and toilet paper has caused a lot of commotion. But how does it impact the real estate industry?
Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, FHA and VA have all issued guidance on alternative ways to proceed with appraisals during this time of social distancing and self quarantine. Many appraisers are making the business decision to no longer complete interior inspections in keeping with the calls for social distancing, and are utilizing new tools that allow the homeowner to assist with the interior inspection.
In a time of great uncertainty on what impact this virus will have on the real estate industry and the economy as a whole, appraisers are working diligently to continue providing professional services to our clients. An integral part of the appraisal process is analyzing the market and reporting on trends and indicators in each area that we work. While it is still unclear at this time exactly what impact Coronavirus will have long term on the overall housing market as a whole, there are some early indicators of a reduction in new listings, and contracts in the New Orleans market.
Eventually the virus will be contained and we will all begin to resume our daily lives in this new normal. We are hopeful that our economy will rebound, our housing market will be strong and our families will retain some of the closeness that has been born of this forced confinement. Let’s all make time to continue those daily walks and bike rides and puzzles and board games and family dance parties and dinner together every night. Maybe even in the midst of a global crisis we can all look for the blessings. Forced social distancing has reminded us that life was not always so over scheduled. Our children can survive, and dare I say thrive, without being shuttled constantly from activity to activity. We have been given the rare opportunity to reshape how we live as a society. We live in an on-demand world of constant connectivity, but hopefully, we can now also live in a world of constant human connectivity as well, where we enjoy each other and our tribe, applauding the hard work of others and showing compassion and grace to each other.