‘Life will never be the same again.’ Its been said non-stop since Coronavirus, but there is no doubt it has accelerated long overdue changes in the property market.
Across the board, property-related professions are adapting and thriving despite the virus.
Over the weekend, 73 per cent of Australia’s capital city auctions were successful, according to CoreLogic.
Of these, Melbourne achieved a 60 per cent clearance rate – despite the Covid-19 lockdown. Given that auctions must now be held at an auctioneer’s home, rather than at agency offices this is an impressive performance.
Buyers are learning the art of bidding for a property online.
But online activities don’t just stop there. Necessity is the mother of innovation and the banks have been forced to adapt; NAB recently announced cuts at 115 branches across regional Australia as it increasingly replaces face-to-face interactions with phone and online services.
Other banks too are adapting to online mortgages; where once borrowers and brokers were forced to have face-to-face meetings, banks are increasingly accepting brokers having identified borrowers via Zoom or Skype for example.
This flexibility is good for brokers as it potentially means they can service clients across the whole country without having pressed the flesh.
This online flexibility also plays into brokers hands as it places less reliance on the banks with branches and allows the smaller (and often cheaper) lenders to compete against The Big Four.
At the last count, mortgage brokers facilitated almost 55 per cent of all new residential mortgages.
Covid-19 is having a huge impact on Australia’s geography with many professionals (and their bosses) realising that they don’t have to be in the CBD office every day; instead, they can choose to live in lifestyle locations such as NSW’s Central Coast or the Sunshine Coast – locations that increasingly lack bank branches, making the role of the mortgage broker all-the-more important in a post COVID world.