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    Covid-19’s Impact on Property Viewings and the Market

    Written By Robert Van Rhijn

    To say that Covid-19 has changed our daily routines would be putting it mildly. All of our lives have been touched by this tragedy, whether that be family members affected by the illness, or the anxiety and loneliness felt as we wait for the crisis to pass.

    While many businesses have been forced to shut their doors, real estate has been ruled an essential service; we all need a roof over our heads and though some buyers, sellers and renters might opt to wait out the pandemic, others have no choice but to move.

    We want to assure our clients that we at Strata are taking this pandemic seriously and are following all of the guidelines laid out by the municipal, provincial and federal governments.

    Can I view properties?

    Wherever possible, we’re looking for opportunities to minimize person to person contact, without denying you access to properties.

    This means:

    Video Tours: If a virtual tour isn’t available, we’ll go to the condo and personally record a video or conduct a live video call walk-through with you via Facetime, Skype, Zoom, etc.

    In-Person Showings: For priority properties, we can conduct in-person showings. Some precautions we must take include: Traveling separately, using hand sanitizer and wipes, maintaining proper social distancing and only meeting clients who haven’t travelled over the past 14 days and have no symptoms of illness. We will also ask that you refrain from bringing any children to showings.

    Narrow the Search: With our knowledge of neighbourhoods and buildings, we can help weed out the lemons and narrow in on the top contenders.

    Our Agents: Our active agents will not have travelled in the past 14 days, will be symptom-free and will follow strict guidelines to avoid exposure. We listen to provincial and federal updates on a daily basis and adjust our actions accordingly.

    COVID-19’s Impact on the Toronto Condo Market

    We’re not going to sugar coat it. Sales are 6x lower than they were a year ago in the Toronto condo market. And for the first time in about a decade, we’ve shifted from a strong seller’s market to a far more balanced market between buyers and sellers.

    If you’re planning to sell, it might be prudent to wait until the economy starts to reopen. If you’re planning to buy, the current market circumstances are much more favourable than pre-COVID-19, with many properties sitting idle. ‘Demand’ has been artificially flattened, as many who don't need to buy are staying home.

    Russian Dolls

    The rental market has also shifted, with a significant number of former short-term (AirBnb) units pouring into the market. This has levelled the playing field between renters and landlords.

    It’s too early to give a forecast on the post-COVID-19 real estate market, however, we do believe that with the emergency relief offered by the Canadian government (particularly the wage subsidy, which will keep unemployment at bay), low-interest rates and strong non-speculative demand, real estate prices will more than likely rebound in 3-6 months after the economy begins to reopen.

    Starting your search for a new home? Click on any of these links to access active listings, sold listings or contact a Strata agent.

    For any questions about this article or media inquires, please email