Earlier in March, real estate information provider Lifull conducted a survey of 925 real estate companies to see how the coronavirus situation was affecting them. Over 70% reported that their operations were already being impacted, while 91.9% were concerned about the future effects that this virus would have on their business activities.
Noticeable impacts have included a drop in the number of visitors to brokerage offices and for property inspections. For customer inquiries, 42.5% of rental brokerages noted a decline, while that number was 50.1% for sales brokerages. Almost a third of sales brokerages reported either delays or cancellations to sales negotiations.
As for taking preventative measures and precautions to limit the potential spread of the virus, the numbers were surprisingly (or not surprisingly) low. Only 6.3% of the real estate companies have shortened their working hours, while sales brokerages had the lowest response rate with 4.4%. For shortening their working week, only 6.7% of brokerages had made any changes. Online tours have so far failed to attract an audience with only 2.8% of brokerages reporting an increase in virtual inspections.
Only 1.6% of rental brokerages and 1.5% of sales brokerage have reported an increase in customer inquiries.
Source: Lifull Co., Ltd. March 19, 2020.