sydney bridge empty
The lockdown has now lasted for more than four weeks. Image – Canva.
  • Conversion to transactions from inspections remain high despite the lockdown
  • Demand overall still high, although he is concerned unemployment may rise again
  • REINSW CEO reminds agents to mutually support both landlords and tenants

Despite the lockdown, virtual tours and one-on-one inspections have continued to be successful with the conversion of inspections to transactions remaining high, according to Real Estate Institute of New South Wales (REINSW) CEO, Tim McKibbin.

Mr McKibbin also argued that the importance of the role of the real estate industry will only be amplified as the lockdown continues.

“Qualified buyers remain motivated to act and empowered vendors are in some cases bringing their plans forward to tap into the prevailing demand,” said Mr McKibbin.

“The vast majority of agents are doing an admirable job in tough circumstances. So much so that real estate remains one of few industries performing with strength.

“These challenging times elevate the importance for every industry, and every worker, to play their role as well as they can.”

Tim McKibbin, REINSW CEO

Like many, Mr McKibbin is concerned about unease in the community given the uncertainty regarding how long the lockdown will last.

He also made mention of the unemployment rate, which is below the 5% mark – what most economists agree is the ‘natural level of unemployment – adding that it is “hard to imagine it won’t creep back” over this level soon.

“The real estate industry will continue to serve the community’s housing needs in accordance with the current requirements, as determined by the Government based on the latest health advice.

“The importance of a healthy property market was recently reinforced in the industry’s contribution to the NSW Budget, and the importance of real estate’s economic role will only be amplified as the lockdown proceeds.”

In summarising the situation, Mr McKibbin said the institute’s advice to agents remains the same; “everyone in the industry should not only comply with current health orders but should also embrace the spirit of them.

“This extends to supporting landlords and tenants where possible to come to mutually agreeable resolutions which are mindful of the challenges we’re all facing at the moment.”

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