The world is opening up, after an unprecedented year of unthinkable Pandemic-caused lockdown. This recession created an unemployment rate of 16% in the US.
We had three hundred and sixty-five days of unmitigated disaster, and life was bereft of the good and simple things—like camping, holding hands, traveling, and checking real estate properties.
But it’s all almost over. The economy is steadily—albeit slowly, opening up.
It’s still a long walk to freedom—and a pretty tiring walk for that matter, but we cannot complain. A year ago, we were oblivious of the new world we would be thrown into.
Today, many markets are breathing life. The real estate industry, state-wide, has begun more conventional transactions, and people are looking to buy and hold, or flip properties like they used to.
Winston Deloney, a Chicago-based real estate entrepreneur, spoke to our editor in a Hollywood-style tea party. Deloney, who also had his fair share of the pandemic-economy beamed with ideas and critical insights to tap into the real estate business in Chicago in this, well, seemingly post-covid era.
So, Winston, was your business affected by the lockdown?
To an extent, it was. Before the lockdown, flipping was a significant source of income in the Chicago real estate market. I also had several residential properties I leased out to tenants.
The pandemic, however, hit a lot of real estate investors. It was troubling for a few of my investor friends, but I always spoke about preparing for the unknown.
By the ‘Unknown,’ do you mean COVID-19 Pandemic?
No, not really. No one could have predicted that a virus would put every government of the world on its toes. It was a defining moment—a moment of great learning for me.
At that point, I realized that survival in business, especially in real estate, is connected to how much an investor plans for the future and prepares for the unknown.
Can you Share Key Insights for Chicago Real Estate Investment?
There has never been a better time to invest in real estate in Chicago as there is today. Seasoned investors—and even insightful beginner real estate investors, will make quite some money, especially if they can understand developing trends and consumer tastes.
Virtual tours and Visualization
Virtual tours not yet a wave; however, it will make a massive impact in your real estate endeavors if you can master the art of telling stories through virtual tours. With a 3D virtual tour, you can give your clients a real-life tour of your property, and they can decide to purchase—or not, after the tour.
Most people who want to buy properties today are still afraid of getting sick, traveling, or having too much contact with many people.
House flipping is a real estate strategy where you buy a property, refurbish, and sell again for a quick profit. House flipping, on average, should not take more than six months before the property is resold.
House flipping, unlike buy and hold, requires extreme timeliness; therefore, if you do not understand how it works, you should get lessons from a seasoned house flipper. Lumber prices across the country have increased in recent months, making house projects more expensive to finish; therefore, tread carefully when you decide to flip and ensure that you have enough funds to complete the process.
There is growing tension and worry amongst Chicago Real Estate Investors: And opportunity Knocks in Times of Tension
On July 28, the Third Annual Mid-Year Perspective on Chicago Real Estate Markets revealed that 40.3% of Chicago investors are worried, and 20.4 percent tend towards concerns for the market. With unease on the fate of lockdowns—or perhaps the threat of new lockdown initiatives, these worries will certainly suffice again.
People are desperate to sell some of their property lines to stay afloat. It’s a hole—a hole that can only be utilized by investors with liquid funds. Many companies have had to shed some of their space-weight mid-last year.
Many corporations are expected to follow the trend this year. Twitter and Square CEO Jack Dorsey informed all employees that they could work from home forever. Shopify CEO did the same. We should expect that trend in 2021.
So, investors are quite afraid of the unknown and what direction the real estate market will go. We have an excellent catalyst here: investors do not know if their investments—especially corporate offices, will still be in high demand or if the virus will even come to an end in 2021.
Smart investors must tap into the uncertainty and buy properties at prices ridiculously lesser than the property’s market value. These properties can be invested into house flipping or vacation rentals; both proved to be very lucrative during the pandemic.