Pandemic real estate boom – KYMA

A special report on real estate during the pandemic

EL CENTRO, Calif. (KYMA, KECY) – Houses on the market are going faster than expected both in Yuma and Imperial County. Buyers are quickly contacting listing agents to make appointments as soon as home listings are made public. Some clients sometimes going as far as making offers contingent upon seeing the home.

That’s not how realtors expected the market to be at the start of the pandemic. On the contrary, the pandemic raised many concerns.

Sylvia Rubio, broker and president of Rubio Realty said, “as soon as march hit we were like oh my gosh what’s going to happen? I personally thought that it was going to come to a screeching halt, but it didn’t.”

Jay Goyal a broker at Exit Realty shared his experience and said, “business was slow from April to July.”

Valentina Estes, senior loan officer at Benchmark Mortgage also shared her thoughts saying that she was scared at first. Estes continued to say, “What’s going to happen? Are we going to lose our jobs? Nobody is going to be able to buy houses.”

Despite the fears and concerns, things continued to move along.

Since June there has been a huge demand for homes causing prices to continue to rise.

Goyal said, “due to the pandemic, the federal government is trying to help every person and reduce interest rates dramatically.” He continued by giving an example, “some people can buy, depending on their credit, the home as low as 2.5%, 2.75%, 3%, which is very low and is helping a lot of buyers in making the decision to purchase the homes.”

Rubio also spoke about the rates decreasing saying, “with the rates coming down, people were very motivated. They were saving $200 – $300 on what they would’ve normally paid six months before. So on the same house, a $250,000 house, they were going to pay $300 less.”

But since more people are buying homes now, inventory has decreased while competition for buying a home has increased.

Estes said, “what we’ve been seeing in the last six months is prices are very competitive. People are coming with $2,000, $5,000 $10,000 in cash to get a house because we don’t have enough houses. and this is all over the world.”

Estes was able to help a client from Texas trying to move to California.

The client had to live in a hotel with her two dogs. Once Estes pulled her client’s loan from Texas, she was able to find her a home within a month.

Goyal said this is the perfect time to sell. Sellers “are getting top of the market price. We have not seen these kind of prices since 2006,” said Goyal.

Rubio shared advice for those who want to buy. “For buyers, you may be competing. You may be competing against other buyers, so make sure you’re pre qualified with your lender and once you’re ready, you really need to write that offer up really…

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