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Info & Resources to Help You Navigate COVID-19

April 8, 2020


Last updated on April 21, 2020 at 10:49 am

We are all adapting to new information and guidelines as they develop. So we created this space to keep you up on the latest as you navigate buying and selling a home during COVID-19.

On March 28, the Federal Government and California deemed residential real estate an essential service. Here’s what that means for your home buying and selling journeys.

Health & Safety Measures 

What precautions is Reali taking to protect me during COVID-19?
Reali is adhering to strict health and safety guidelines as keeping our customers and employees safe is paramount. Although we recommend virtual home tours and video conferencing via Zoom, as of March 28th, buyers are now allowed to tour homes in person as real estate has been deemed an essential service. We are asking buyers to refrain from touching surfaces and have asked our agents to sanitize all door handles upon tour conclusion.

Buying a Home 

Can I buy a home right now?
For those in the market who need to buy or sell a home right now, Reali is here. We are using technology to keep home buying and selling as personal as possible.

How can I tour a home with Reali?
Reali has many convenient solutions in place to help buyers. We are conducting all of our appointments via Zoom. Buyers can also place contingent offers on a home, which is dependent upon an in-person tour after Stay-at-Home orders are lifted. In some cases, Reali Agents are able to open doors for buyers while maintaining social distancing guidelines.

Is now a good time to buy a home with everything going on? 
While our lives have changed suddenly and drastically, the decision-making factors associated with buying or selling a home are personal. Buyers will continue to be impacted by life events, personal finances, job relocation and stability, available housing supply and mortgage rates, to name a few and will make the decision to buy. A few points to consider:

With current market uncertainty, is now a good time to get a home loan?
If you are making the decision that now is the time to buy a home, we are here for you. Reali Loans has been entirely online since its inception, so our loan operations remain unchanged. If you need quick home financing and lower rates, talk to a Reali loan expert today.

Selling a Home 

Can I sell a home during coronavirus?
Yes, you are able to sell your home during coronavirus. Reali is following state and national guidelines to make sure are following all guidelines.

I get it. But is now a good time to sell my home?
Sellers have different motivations for selling a home. In California, housing demand is high, and in February, homes were selling quickly with minimal discounts. There is currently a dearth of homes available for sale with pending sales down and active listings falling by more than 20 percent in recent months. The bottom line: California’s chronically undersupplied housing market should keep some upward pressure on home prices as demand far outstrips available housing supply. Selling a home in today’s ‘new norm’ can prove fruitful.

What precautions will Reali take when selling my home during the coronavirus pandemic?
Reali Agents are offering Zoom appointments and virtual tours during this time. Real estate was deemed an essential service by the federal government on March 28th, and although buyers are now permitted to tour homes at private showings as long as social distancing is followed, we still recommend buyers tour homes virtually. Reali and other real estate companies are also not permitted to host open houses at this time. If a buyer does request to tour your home in person, we will only do so with your permission, and our team will follow cleaning and sanitizing protocols once the tour has ended.

How long will it take to close on a house now? 
It’s no surprise that home closings are taking longer now. At the end of March, Reali Escrow averaged 29-30 days from the time an offer was accepted. Closing times could increase in April due to getting appraisers and inspections scheduled with Stay-at-Home orders in place across California.

What if I need to buy and sell a home at the same time?
Whether you need to sell now to lower your monthly payment, or are eager to get into a larger home, we’re here to make it happen. Reali Trade-In gives you the opportunity and flexibility to buy your new home first with Reali Cash Offer (we give you the cash, you buy the house) and move in when you’re ready, while we sell your old home. The upside? You won’t have to worry about having two mortgages while trying to sell your home.

Is it a good time to refinance?
With rates at historical lows, it’s a good time to explore how much you can save by refinancing your current home loan. Please reach out to our Reali Loans team to get a quote to refinance.

I am decluttering and preparing to sell my home, can I donate items right now?
It’s a great time to go through your home, closets, and the garage to see what items you can donate. If you are planning to drop off items to an organization in your neighborhood, Goodwill or Salvation Army, make sure you call ahead as not all stores are open and accepting donations right now.

Reali Technology 

How is Reali different from other real estate companies?
As a tech company, we have always offered tech to home buyers and sellers. The Reali App allows you to work with our agents to buy or sell a home. You can chat with your real estate expert and manage all parts of the real estate transaction from your home. Buyers can experience 3D virtual tours of all our listings on the Reali platform. Sellers, we list your home on the MLS and provide digital marketing materials to reach the right prospective buyers.

Are you offering virtual open houses?
Yes, Reali is offering home sellers virtual open houses as physical open houses are not yet permitted. Your Reali Agent has the ability to schedule a virtual open house with approval from a home seller. Sellers are not allowed to be home during the virtual open house. Ask your Reali Agent for additional details.

What are the benefits of the Reali App?

At Reali, we don’t just have a team of licensed, local agents to help you buy or sell a home, we have an app to make it as convenient as possible. Nearly 30 percent of Reali customers choose to work with us because of the convenience of our mobile app. Here are are some benefits of the Reali App.

Buyers: After downloading the Reali App, buyers can quickly and easily see exactly where they are in the home buying or selling process, as well as what is coming up. Use the Reali app to connect with your local agent, search for homes, request information on homes via chat, and place offers.

Sellers: Download the Reali App to get kick off your home selling journey. You can request a fast, free valuation and find out what your home is worth in as little as 24 hours. Then, we’ll match you with a local agent in your area and give you important details about their previous experience.

A note to Sellers: Our vast network of buyers can quickly and easily place an offer on your home using the Reali App. We are encouraging buyers to place offers contingent upon an in-person tour. While the circumstances may not be ideal, this is the safest way for buyers to see the interior of your home at this time.

Additional Topics We’re Tracking 

Can I move during Stay-at-Home orders?
Yes, moving is allowed during Stay at Home if the move is a planned move. However, even though moving is allowed, some condominium buildings are not allowing residents to move during the shelter-in-place orders. So check with your HOA or condo board and your city before scheduling a move.

What additional real estate services are allowed during Stay-at-Home orders? 

The California Association of Realtors has compiled a list of local and county orders relating to real estate’s status as an essential service since stricter local and county orders supersede the state’s order. Many cities and counties are changing their guidance/orders based on local events. These change daily, sometimes hourly. Please check with our team if you have questions about the services allowed in your area.

We will continue to provide additional information and resources to answer your questions. Please check back for the latest, or reach out to us 7 days a week through our chat feature on the Reali App. 

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