EDMOND, Okla. — Real estate transactions may have slowed but are still ongoing during the coronavirus outbreak. The industry makes a major financial impact to the Edmond area, said Jilian Gardner, president of the Edmond Board of Realtors, when presenting to the city council.
The city council has not confined the real estate industry in consideration of the coronavirus; however, Gardner said EBR understands the council’s ongoing response to essential and non-essential businesses in Edmond if another emergency declaration is needed. She underscored that human lives will be affected.
Gardner presented to the city council what the local economic impact will be if the real estate industry is shut down. Edmond Board of Realtors has more than 1,000 members representing Edmond, Guthrie and Deer Creek, Gardner told the council.
“They are going to be personally and financially impacted by this,” Gardner said. “Some of them in really hard ways — could mean bankruptcy for someone or foreclosure if they are not allowed to close the transactions that are currently pending.”
The industry extends to the county clerk, abstracting and title companies, mortgage lenders to process loans, real estate licensees, and city inspectors.
“In 2019 alone there was over $357 million from real estate transactions that were dollars put back into our local economy in Edmond and surrounding areas,” she said. “So that equates to about $76,000 per transaction.”
These estimates are low, she said. They do not include people who make repairs such as electricians and plumbers. No special inspections were included.
“This is just Realtors®, title fees, appraisers, and inspectors involved in the transaction,” Gardner said.
About 725 pending real estate transactions with a buyer and seller are waiting to close on homes. About 253 of the 725 transactions represent new construction, Gardner said. An additional 1,035 homes are on the market in Edmond and Deer Creek.
“Four-hundred-fifty-two are under construction,” she said. “Again these are people who need to sell.”
The world of new construction goes beyond contractors and materials. Gardner said it includes product manufacturers, warehouses, and transportation of products to and from job sites.
“There’s a lot of industries that will be impacted there and we understand you have some hard decisions to make in that regard,” Gardner said. “But just taking all of that into consideration — these numbers are not even including ‘for sale by owner’ and custom home builders who would not have their home listed.”
Property management has a duty to tenants and owners to ensure properties are maintained and inhabitable. EBR puts out a consistent message to stay home and avoid all unnecessary contact and maintaining proper hygiene and social distancing.
Instead, she said, “Doing web meeting with buyers whenever possible, doing video meetings whenever possible.”
She added that realtors should restrict unnecessary showings or open houses.
Gardner asked the city council to take the $357 million impact to the local economy into consideration with their decisions.