Say what you will about the real estate industry, but we’re an adaptable bunch. We swiftly embraced virtual systems and changed the way we work to accommodate restrictions and lockdowns. I dare say we were one of the fastest sectors to do so!
All through lockdown, I’ve continued to work with clients in New South Wales and Victoria. Every week I get dozens of enquiries from people who want to move to Queensland.
I tell them it’s definitely doable to purchase a property you’ve never seen in real life before (in fact, it’s happening all the time!). It’s all a matter of trust and technology. Here are the tools and adaptations we use to make it happen.
Open homes are now virtual
It’s very commonplace these days to hold property viewings over Zoom or FaceTime. If I do say so myself, I’ve got the process down pat when I do a virtual viewing with locked-down clients.
I can even zero in on features, damage or flaws to give people a realistic picture of what they’d be buying. As their buyer’s advocate, they trust me to be honest with them about my impressions and concerns.
Auctions are very accommodating to absent bidders
Auctions are stressful and it’s standard practice for buyer’s advocates or other representatives to do the talking for bidders. I usually bid on behalf of my local clients anyway because it’s such a hectic process where emotion can take over. It’s no different when I’m bidding for clients based in Sydney or Melbourne. Over the past 18 months or so, the auction strategy and process has become much more amenable to virtual bidders.
Buyer’s advocate with local market knowledge and contacts
If you’re in lockdown and you don’t know anyone in the area you want to move to, online research is the only tool you have to go on. That’s why buyers engage a buyer’s advocate with in-depth local knowledge and a broad network of contacts. I can give buyers in lockdown a good understanding of property values in the area they’re interested in.
Online meetings with mortgage brokers
Mortgage brokers are all about the Zoom consultation these days and my clients are loving it. Helps things move more quickly! If you’re in lockdown and ready to buy, ask your chosen lender for a virtual meeting to get the ball rolling.
Electronic settlements and moving exemptions
Conveyancing and the property settlement process – famously archaic – is finally moving into the 21st century thanks to COVID! Electronic signing methods through DocuSign are now widely accepted and PEXA settlements have been able to happen virtually in locked-down states. Processes are even in place for contactless key handovers. As a nominated representative, buyer’s advocates have always been able to attend settlement on behalf of buyers.
Not many people realise that you can still move house while in lockdown. It’s one of the exemptions. While you still have to obtain the necessary permits and abide by quarantine requirements, for many people it’s worth it for the lifestyle upgrade.
Ready to enquire about buying property through a Brisbane buyer’s advocate? Call 0415 364783