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To Our Sellers: How LMKS Group is operating during the “Stay at Home” Order

Governor Pritzker and Mayor Lightfoot recently enacted a ‘Stay at Home’ order through April 7th to help protect the safety of the public and prevent the spread of COVID-19, and we are taking this order very seriously. 

You might be a little anxious about the sale of your home at this time, but we’re here to help keep you updated as it pertains to the real estate market, and what will be best for you and your home sale. We can provide you with current information, as things are changing on a daily basis.

We have discussed the situation with our team, colleagues, and other industry professionals, and for many of you, it will be best to keep your listing ”Active” on the market. If we have not yet gone live with your listing, we explain below what we will do in the weeks leading up to getting your property listed.

Why keep your listing Active:

People will be surfing the internet and browsing social media frequently while at home. We want your property to have as much exposure as possible during a time when people will be spending more time online.

What about my market time?

Since this is a world health crisis, there is an assumed explanation for market times that are longer than usual. We could also list your home as “Temp” (Temporarily off Market), which means your home wouldn’t accrue additional listing time on our MLS, MRED (Midwest Real Estate Data). The tradeoff? Your listing would not show up when people are searching for homes on third party websites.

What about buyers wanting to take advantage of low interest rates– will I lose out on this opportunity?

Rates have been fluctuating for the past quarter, and particularly in the past few weeks. In fact, rates this week have been increasing because lenders have been so flooded down with new purchase and refinance requests that they just cannot handle the workload.  Once the Stay at Home order is lifted, we hope to see rates become less volatile. Interest rates are still at historical lows. For any finance questions, please visit our preferred lender here.

What if someone wants to walk through my home?

The state of Illinois has deemed real estate services an essential business, so we will continue to operate during this time. However, we will be limiting in-person home showings as much as possible.

Our MLS, MRED, released this message:

“Immediately following the Governor’s press conference, MRED’s Board of Managers held a specially called session. In a unanimous decision, the board voted to suspend enforcement of active listings not allowing showings while the “Stay at Home” order is in effect” 

The good news is, we have taken videos of your property that we can forward to all prospective clients and real estate brokers! If you’d like to send us any additional footage with features you love that you’d like to specifically highlight, we’d love for you to share those with us! You can also send us things you love about the building, location, or favorite area hot spots (that people can visit post-Stay at Home order).

My property is vacant, can it still be shown?

It is likely that there will be few or no showing requests during this time, but if your home is vacant, we can provide access information on a case by case basis so they can show at their discretion.

What if someone really wants to purchase my home?

That would be amazing! We would ensure that we could facilitate everything electronically and virtually.

I’m considering listing my home – how long should I wait?

The best course of action right now is to allow us to “pre-market” your home. We must have a signed listing agreement to be able to do this, but we can post on Top Agent Network, list on the Private Listing Network, post on social media to create some awareness, provide video footage, etc. We have seen a slowdown in activity, so we want to put your home on the market when we have the best possible opportunity to sell at the best possible price. With the government mandated Stay at Home order, we will review the market every week to determine the best course of action. Based on the information we have at the moment, we anticipate that the first or second week of April will be a more appropriate time to list your property.

What can I be doing in the meantime?

Take care of yourself and your family! Relax, do what will make you feel good, do something you told yourself you would do if you had more time!

As It relates to your home, there’s plenty to do and now more time to do it!  Here are some things to consider:  

  • Clear out the clutter
  • Clean out and organize closets/drawers/cabinets to be “show ready” for when we go live
  • Do a deep cleaning – baseboards, stair cases, above cabinets, dust off light fixtures, replace dusty vent or light covers (approximately $4 each from Home Depot)
  • Take on painting if it suits you, and take care of any paint touch ups you might need

Everyone is in this together right now. We want to make sure you know that we are here to answer any and all questions, as well as help you make the best real estate decisions.

Please don’t hesitate to call, text, email–we are getting really good at using Zoom, so we’re happy to video chat as well!

Thank you so much for trusting us during these uncertain times, and we look forward to helping you once things settle down. Take good care of yourself.

Warm Regards,

Karen and Laura
Team Leaders – LMKS Group

Questions? Contact The Laura McGreal and Karen Schwartz Group

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