To say this has been an atypical week for the US economy would be an understatement of epic proportions.
The Coronavirus pandemic has undoubtedly been taking its toll on Americans physically, emotionally, and economically over the last two weeks, especially this past week, with the stock market plunging to levels we have not seen since 2008.
In light of this current crisis, President Trump is currently proposing a $1 trillion dollar coronavirus stimulus package, which will include specific bailouts in many sectors, as well as payments to individual taxpayers. Half is expected to be earmarked for individuals, with the other half designated businesses in “severely distressed sectors.” Additionally, in an effort to lessen the blow of the downturn, the tax filing date has been pushed back to July 15, Fannie Mae and Freddie have suspended foreclosures and evictions for “at least 60 days,” and interest has been suspended on federal student loans, allowing borrowers “to suspend their student loans and loan payments without penalty for at least the next 60 days."
Strong measures are being taken at this time to mitigate this unprecedented situation, and some experts remain hopeful that this will be short lived. National Securities’ Strategist Art Hogan thinks the “damage is probably going to be temporary, and we’re going to see a recovery probably in the back half of this year,” according to CNBC.
What Does This Mean Specifically for the Real Estate Industry?
Some early data is in and, as expected, it’s a bit concerning. Based on a new analysis conducted by Capital Economics, CNBC reports that home sales could fall 35% this spring, compared to the last quarter of 2019, noting it would be the “lowest since the start of 1991.” In New York, as reported bythe Halstead Housing Index, open house traffic dipped the weekend ending March 8 compared to the previous weekend. Halstead’s Fritz Fregan is hopeful, however, and suggests that “if we’re able to replicate Chinese efforts in curbing the virus, then by mid-July or early August we should see the markets and buyers confidence coming back to normal.”
Along with Fregan, Hogan, and other experts, we here at Casandra Properties also remain optimistic during this challenging time and will continually adapt to the rapidly-changing market and needs of our clients, as we always have. We have been setting up virtual tours and open houses this past week, along with other industry leaders across the nation. We are here for you now and when we inevitably emerge on the other side. In the meantime, wash your hands and stay well.