I know, I know, an extra three weeks, minimum! On the other side of the coin last week we were told that estate agents could be one of the first to reopen in a report run by many newspapers. Deemed to offer the greatest boost to the economy, but carrying the smallest risk of transmitting the virus, estate agents looked to have been given an early start when the lockdown relaxes only if they can display effective social distancing. In fact, we have already made plans and taken steps this week to ensure our offices will be compliant to social distancing and appointments can be carried out physically without fear of transmission.

What the last week has seen in business terms is a big spike in homeowners looking to put their property to the market either for sale or to rent to capture the ‘captive’ audience we have at the moment. Having just had the period extended, it is the firm belief that as days go by we are certainly on our way to a more normal life. It is a good number of our clients’ beliefs that being available early for any pent up demand will gain a quicker sale and at potentially a better price. The way I heard it described this week was popping a cork on a champagne bottle, first you get the surge and then you get the flow! So if a move is on your mind maybe now is the time to be talking to us.

In the meantime, our video walkthroughs are proving popular with more and more being requested everyday as buyers look to get ahead of the market. Some of you may have seen on our Facebook page last week (https://www.facebook.com/BEAltd/) with Kevin from our Farnborough office, following sending a video walkthrough to a keen buyer, spent 45 minutes on a Facetime time call walking the client through the property, asking any poignant questions and even went up into the loft. Some hours later that very client offered on the property and, although we are yet to agree a deal, it looks like we are working our way towards agreeing something. Video walkthroughs are especially popular in our lettings department where tenants by their dozens are agreeing to rent a property from these videos alone, in fact they have been so popular that we have decided that when the distancing policies relax somewhat we will continue to offer this as a marketing tool in both sales and lettings for those who are unable to view physically.

In and around the departments of Bridges and Orchard by Bridges we continue to operate at a high level with many of the faces you all know and trust working diligently to ensure that all of our clients are kept up to date during this difficult period and, of course, accelerate the moves of those who are already under offer. In fact we are seeing quite a few transactions go through to exchange and completion now that the conveyancers and lenders have acclimatised to the market and what is and what is not possible during this distancing period. Working closely with conveyancers, mortgage brokers, lenders and removal companies we have been able to facilitate moves under government guidelines, that those less local would have found impossible to make happen. We have found that during these difficult times, as a local company of close to 30 years we have been able to bring people together to lean on each other to work for the very best outcome for all of our clients during this period, NHS and key workers at the forefront.

Lastly and vastly most importantly we would like to thank each and every one of our clients for their loyalty and understanding during these unchartered times. Whilst experts in property and having faced many markets, COVID-19 has given us a completely new set of challenges which we strive to overcome on a daily basis, our aim is to continue to do so to see us through the other side of this pandemic with our clients’ moves at the very top of our agenda.

If you would like to ask us anything about buying, selling, letting or renting, please don’t hesitate to give us a call on 01252 361550 or email [email protected].