The process of finding and buying a home has changed in the past few months, leaving many potential buyers wondering, Can I buy a home, condo, land, etc. in Vermont during the pandemic?
The short answer is: yes!
And now, here’s the long answer.
Considerations for buying a home during the pandemic
There are a number of considerations to keep in mind now that the pandemic has turned the world of real estate upside down. Alongside the usual intricacies and nuances involved in the home buying process, Buyers and Realtors must keep in mind the safety measures put in place by each State due to COVID-19 pandemic.
In Vermont, we are now able to conduct in-person showings but must follow mandatory health and safety protocols. This includes:
- Maintaining physical distance
- Wearing masks during the showings at a minimum. Some Sellers are more comfortable with out-of-state Buyers also wearing gloves and shoe covers (don’t worry – we provide!)
- It is also required that Buyers complete a ‘COVID Compliance Certification Questionnaire’ to ensure that Buyers meet the State of Vermont guidelines. For example, it is required that potential Buyers from outside of Vermont have quarantined in their home State for 14 days prior to a showing or quarantine for 7 days and produce a negative COVID-19 test. View Vermont’s guidelines for cross-state travel here.
Additional considerations include the availability of essential parties involved in the home buying process, such as Building Inspectors, Attorneys, Appraisers, etc. Local businesses that provide these services are also required to follow the safety measures, and many are backlogged due to being shut down for March, April and much of May.
Vermont homes are still selling during the pandemic
As urban dwellers look for ‘safe haven’ in Vermont, greater numbers of potential buyers are becoming more comfortable with virtual showings, and we are seeing some property go ‘under contract’ sight-unseen. The motivation for the Buyers from areas that have become virus hotspots is the ability to spend time in quieter areas with more breathing room… less densely populated areas reduce the risks of contracting COVID-19, as demonstrated by the consistently low numbers of confirmed cases in Vermont.
States like Vermont are becoming a haven for city dwellers and enticing them to move out to the countryside. Cities have continuously experienced a decline in population numbers for a while now, and the pandemic has kept people flowing out “in search of greener pastures — fewer crowds, more space and a better quality of life…” according to relocation specialist Alison Bernstein (Source: CNN).
Additionally, companies are realizing that employees can work from home successfully and are consciously choosing to “maintain low overhead, canceling real estate leases and favoring the lower overhead cost of virtual teams,” allowing employees the chance to choose where they really want to live (Source: Politico).
Although the pace of the market is off-the-charts and multiple-offer situations are on the rise, Buyers are still careful about paying a fair price, often reconciling their purchase price with an appraisal, even in a cash purchase scenario. There is also significant interest in vacant land as Buyers consider their future potential to either relocate or retire in Vermont.
Buying a Vermont home during the pandemic
So amidst the pandemic, our answer is yes: it is possible to purchase a home in Vermont, and there are many benefits to doing so! We have a number of listings available in all categories, including single-family homes, condos, and vacant land parcels that span a range of price points to appeal to all buyers.
If you are interested in making a piece of Vermont your very own, we are happy to assist you in any way possible. Do not hesitate to contact us if you would like to learn more about our available properties and to begin your Vermont home-buying journey today.