The Town of Babylon and the surrounding communities have been hard hit by the Coronavirus. As a result, residential real estate has suffered immensely. The inability to show homes, or host open houses has severely limited the supply of new homes coming to the market.
As the Town of Babylon and surrounding areas continue to struggle with the onslaught of the Coronavirus, the question on many potential sellers’ minds is…How will this affect me if I put my home on the market this year?
Very few, if any of us have experienced a pandemic before so it is a little difficult to predict the outcome. There are many variables in play. Before the pandemic, the Town of Babylon and the surrounding areas were most definitely in a “sellers’ market”. Inventory was low and buyer demand was high. The restriction of new listings on the market brought on by COVID-19 suggests that potential home sellers have chosen to wait to list their homes for sale. It is difficult to list a home for sale, especially if it’s occupied, in an environment with such restrictions on viewings by potential buyers. So how will this play out? Will all those people who planned on listing their homes in early spring flood the market with new listings as soon as the pandemic is under control or will it be a gradual roll out? Many home-bound homeowners have taken the time to do projects around the home so those who are ready to sell may be inclined to put their homes on the market immediately. Still, others may take a wait and see approach before listing their homes. Another scenario is those homeowners who must utilize the 90 day forebearance of mortgage payments made available by the CARES Act Mortgage Forebearance. On the 91st day, 4 months of mortgage payments will be due. How will they navigate that scenario? Will they apply for a loan modification? Will they be fully employed and be able to qualify for a loan modification? If not, what will their options be? Will they be forced to sell? Will we be faced with a housing crisis that will result in a short sale/foreclosure environment?
What about the buyers? Many Long Islanders are laid off or furloughed while still many have reduced hours working from home which have negatively impacted their salary. With an uncertain future ahead, will they now put their home buying plans on pause? Additionally, some buyers who had saved their down payment and closing costs are now forced to use their savings to take care of living expenses. Again, faced with the possible resurgence of the virus and an uncertain employment future, will they also take the wait and see approach?
With so many variables, the future of home sales in the Town of Babylon and the surrounding communities is unclear. The hope is that the economy will recover quickly and we will have a balanced and robust housing market.