John Chapman
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24 April 2020

Anyone who predicts, now, what will happen to Real Estate this year is either lying or silly or both!

The problem right now is Schedule 1 “Reasonable Excuses” of the Public Health (COVID-19 Restrictions on Gathering and Movement) Order 2020 (NSW) legislation.

Order clause 8 – it is legal to travel “…inspecting a potential new place of residence”.

HOWEVER, anecdotally only a few from Sydney, 95% of the market, viewed a property in the Upper Blue Mountains during the Easter Weekend, usually the greatest viewing period of the year.

Actually, I am told only ONE looked at a very keenly priced deceased Estate with Beneficiaries residing in England. They probably just want out!

I had THREE at the modest Unit 3/58 Lurline St Katoomba.

Until the lock-down restrictions have been lifted, and probably for a while after that, Sydney will not be travelling to the Blue Mountains for anything, let alone looking at a property.

The police can pull you up and ask what you are doing.

So why depend on clause 8. Spare yourself that embarrassment – don’t go, YET.

Even under the “Reasonable Excuses” you can only show a property, by a timed appointment, and to individuals – not even a married couple together!

Videos and “Digital Presentation” might sound like a good idea but no one’s going to buy a property without putting their foot on it.

I have my professional reservations about videos, 360° photos, and digital presentations – a matter for commercial discussion another time.

It’s just not going to happen!

If you were to put a property on the market right now it would sit there with “No Offers” for at least a month or until the restrictions are lifted.

“How long has this property been on the market?” – an often-asked question at Open Houses.

What you can do is make “A Plan”.

but as my old USA friend said “you only make plans so you know what you’re not doing!”

Autumn photography could take place, and discussions with me as to marketing – see my Website.

If you are in a position to buy, and for whatever reason have to, then simply offer something and begin negotiations.

If you “have to sell” simply tell your creditors to “go jump” and refer them to the various “Moratorium” Legislation. Tell them about the Courts that can’t operate by Skype and telephone calls!

Sensibly, in 3 to 6 weeks’ time when the situation clarifies perhaps a little, a vaguely sensible “guess” could be made about what Real Estate up here might actually do.

The Stock Exchange anywhere traditionally tries to predict what is going to happen in 6 months’ time – watch that volatility!

What will be truer than ever is that marketing will have to be done carefully and well.

“Buyers” are not simply going to “turn up”.

“It’s an ill wind that blows you no good” – at least you can park anywhere you like in Leura!

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