‘Gobbling them up left and right’: RVA housing market remains strong despite pandemic

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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Despite COVID-19, housing experts in the Richmond region say the real estate market remains strong.

If a house is priced well, realtors say they are still often receiving multiple offers on homes.

A house on South Sheppard Street in the city went up for sale a week and a half ago.

Real estate agent Ernie Chamberlain with George: A Real Estate Group Hometown Realty says that’s exactly what happened with one property. Within three days and multiple offers later, his clients had a “contract pending” sign in their front yard.

“There’s just such low inventory that people are kind’ve gobbling them up left and right,” Chamberlain tells 8News.

Even with a pandemic, Chamberlain says its a “seller’s market” because so few homes are for sale.
It’s making some listings competitive.

“When something is nice that does come up and it has a decent price point — something that’s reasonable — it does tend to generate multiple offers still,” he said.

This realtor explains he is also adjusting his business practices and interactions with clients due to COVID-19.

He’s purchased more video equipment and now narrates virtual home tours for his clients to get a sense of size and space — without worrying about social distancing.

Just south in Chesterfield, Jeremiah Brown is getting ready to close on his first home in Midlothian at the beginning of May.

“Corona definitely caused us to kind’ve think a bit to make sure this is the right time,” Brown said.

Ultimately, he chose to move forward with buying a home because it had been part of his plan for over a year. Plus, he found the right property quickly and did not want to miss out.

“We were only looking for like a week and a half before we found one that really just clicked,” Brown said.

At a time where celebrations are few and far between, agents like Chamberlain say helping clients buy a home and mark a milestone in life is rewarding.

“When someone is buying their first house, especially if they have children and they’ve been in an apartment for a long period of time and they’ve been saving and grinding, those are the best,” Chamberlain said.

Chamberlain told 8News while the market remains strong and competitive, some people are choosing to step away from the market altogether.

He says two examples of those buyers are people without job security or those looking for an investment/rental property.

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