Homebuying During COVID-19

Traditionally, homebuying was a full-contact experience. Much of the process was conducted in person — from meeting with real estate agents (and shaking their hands to say “hello”) to touring homes for sale and sitting around a table at closing.

COVID-19 disrupted the typical ways of doing business, but that doesn’t mean buyers can’t purchase homes during the crisis. Real estate pros are getting creative to keep things moving.

Below, you’ll find our ongoing series about the challenges buyers face during COVID-19 and how the homebuying process is adapting to meet their needs. Don’t lose hope, you can find your dream home!

Looking at homes for sale? Tour them virtually!

With the housing market adjusting to life in a crisis, the process of shopping for homes is going digital. Real estate agents are offering virtual tours of houses that are for sale, for example, while sending paperwork to buyers via email.

We explore how to buy a home during COVID-19.

Can you get a mortgage entirely online?

Could applying for a mortgage become as simple as ordering something from Amazon? It’s possible!  

The mortgage industry is moving toward what some pros call the “all-digital” mortgage.

Read up on applying for mortgages online.

family playing outside

Time for an appraisal. Do appraisers have to come inside?

Ever heard of an exterior-only appraisal? What about a desktop appraisal?

If you’re taking out a mortgage, your lender will require an appraisal of the home you’re buying. To keep appraisers and homeowners safe during COVID-19, some appraisals are allowed to compile their reports without going inside.

Here’s a guide to appraisals during COVID-19.

woman walking through empty house

Home inspections are being held remotely, too

With folks buying more homes remotely than ever due to COVID-19, homebuyers are touring sales listings on their phones and buying houses they’ve never set foot in, making home inspections especially important.

We looked into home inspections during COVID-19.

Heading to closing ... from a social distance

You’ve already been through quite a journey by the time you get to closing on a home, and now you’re in the home stretch.

The challenges added to the homebuying process during COVID-19 are the last thing anyone needed, but steps are being taken to handle them safely.

Check out our guide to home closings during COVID-19.

Notaries for closing docs — are virtual notaries a thing?

While buying a home, some documents you sign in the process will need to be notarized. 

But with closings taking place remotely amid COVID-19, how can a notary witness your signature?

Here’s what you need to know about notaries during COVID-19.