Our First Pandemic Home Sale
An experience we'll never forget...
What started as a typical Spring home sale has emerged as one of the most rewarding transactions of our careers.
The ambitions of our client were similar to many of those that had come before her. She was retiring from her work as a junior college professor and administrator. Her children were grown and she now had young grandchildren across the country in North Carolina. She was ready to leave the Silicon Valley, cash in on her well-appreciated home, and move to be close to her daughter.
We began our typical prep process looking to optimize her go-to-market strategy while taking into consideration her personal and professional calendar, as well as typical Spring market forces. As we evaluated the home for repairs, packing and staging, the news started to trickle in about a virus in China - nothing too alarming.
Fast-forward to March 13, 2020 when schools started closing and talk of social distancing began. By March 15th, the official Shelter in Place (SIP) ordinance was announced and all real estate came to a shuddering halt. What now for our client?
We strategized quickly and determined that the immediate market - when buyers that have been active remain so, likely with a specific need - was her best bet. The months ahead were unpredictable and simply would not yield the gain she needed to make the move.
With safe practices always at the forefront of our decisions, we moved forward with the prep of the property. Our client moved into an AirBnB to allow for vacant individualized appointments and showings. We briefed her daily on the activity, despite being limited, and noticed that buyer interest was genuine when it surfaced. With no open houses and restricted showing access, we had to personally engage with each potential buyer to really gauge interest and facilitate a sale.
Sure enough, one month into SIP, the right buyer appeared and stepped up. A lovely young family looking to move out of an apartment and into a home where they could raise their children and grow roots in the community. Feeling comfortable with modest financial security, they wanted to move forward with their plans despite the uncertainty in the world around them.
Two stories of families, our client and the buyers, that are safely continuing on. We feel blessed to have played our role and pivoted our business practices to allow this sale to go forward. Our “Zoom” sign was filled with tears of joy all around as we celebrated the deeply human connection in our work even when personal interactions are curtailed by a pandemic.
She told us her story, and we set the stage.