Buying or selling your home mid COVID-19? A financial adviser has this message

Hold onto your piggy bank

These are uncertain times and the housing market is bouncing up and down with instability.

But for people with pre-approval, or who need to buy or sell because of school zones, baby on the way or even concern about their job (and the possibility of getting a loan if they are unemployed), what should you do?

WATCH: These incredible makeovers might inspire you to stay put – at least until after the pandemic subsides. 

So should you sit tight and wait for the market to smooth out – or buy now? Financial Advisor Dianne Charman, AMP, has more than 20 years’ experience crunching numbers.

Here, Dianne shares her financial expertise for both buyers and sellers during this uncertain time.

Q. How does a pandemic like the coronavirus COVID-19 impact the housing market?

A. Something like COVID-19 has a huge impact on the market, however at this stage, it is beyond what we can scope. Currently, the biggest focus is ensuring that people have the knowledge and tools to navigate this impact not just from a property and finance perspective, but from a wider wellbeing perspective also.   

Q. How does a crisis like COVID-19 effect the behavior of buyers and sellers?

A. Buyers: We’re still seeing property settlements going through at the moment. That said, for those who are earlier in the buying process, they might be looking to put that off at the moment, whether that is to upgrade or relocate completely.

Sellers: People who are selling may need to start rethinking their timings, if they can. Their wider financial situation might have changed as a result and it might be in their best interest to hold on selling property for now. However, the other side to this argument is that there might be people in this situation who need to sell quicker, so it’s all about timings and reading the current market. With the market being as fluid as it currently is, it is understandable that people would be reluctant to sell.

Q. What should people who need to sell their house consider?

A. Applicable to both buyers and sellers is the fact that we are in a very fluid situation right now that is evolving every day, so it is important to take a step back and view the wider picture, whether you’re buying or selling, before making any big decisions.

Take stock of all your assets, your current financial situation and also your general living situation. Ask yourself, ‘is now really the time to be selling?’

Q. What about people that want or need to buy a home?

A. It might be time to hit the pause button and take a moment to think about all considerations when buying a house or property. There is so much more to buying a house then just ‘buying the house’ – and a number of other expenses that are incurred in this process.

What financial advice do you have for home buyers and sellers?

A. Our financial wellbeing and general wellbeing are so important at a time like this. Take the time to take stock of your financial assets, everything from income to property to super. Identify your financial commitments across the board and you might not be able to meet all of them and that is ok. Doing this can help you identify the areas where you do need assistance, so you can go and get it, whether that is from the government or your banking provider.

ABOUT: Dianne Charman, of Jade Financial Group, is an Authorised Representative of AMP Financial Planning Pty Ltd, ABN 89 051 208 327, AFS Licence No. 232706.

Any advice given is general only and has not taken into account your objectives, financial situation or needs.  Because of this, before acting on any advice, you should consult a financial planner to consider how appropriate the advice is to your objectives, financial situation and needs.

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