Coronavirus and Real Estate: News, Reports, and Discussions

This page will be updated multiple times per week. Our goal is to consolidate reports and discussions pertaining to Coronavirus's impact on real estate. We aim to keep everything on this page as unbiased and factually correct as possible. 

Real Estate News

 

How COVID-19 Has Affected Real Estate And The Housing Market

Between the NAR’s two studies, buyer interest dropped significantly. On March 9, 78% of REALTORS® reported there had been no change in buyer behavior. Only 16% of those surveyed noticed a decrease in buyers’ interest. However, by March 16, as schools began to close and social distancing guidelines ramped up, nearly half of agents claimed that buyers had become less inclined to purchase residential properties.

A similar trajectory was seen in New York City, which has not only the largest real estate market in the country but now also 10 times more COVID-19 cases than any other state. Open house traffic steadily declined before such gatherings were banned altogether. According to Fritz Frigan, executive director of sales and leasing for Halstead Real Estate in New York City, attendance at open houses across the Big Apple’s five boroughs dropped 42% between March 8and March 15, and a whopping 58% between February 23 (before the news had hit home) and March 15 (the day NYC public school closures were announced).

 

Federal Reserve cuts rates to zero and launches massive $700 billion quantitative easing program - CNBC

In an emergency move Sunday, the Federal Reserve announced it is dropping its benchmark interest rate to zero and launching a new round of quantitative easing. The QE program will entail $700 billion worth of asset purchases entailing Treasurys and mortgage-backed securities.

 

U.S. Cities And Counties Halt Evictions Amid Coronavirus Pandemic - Forbes

As the nation responds to the coronavirus outbreak, moratoriums on evicting renters take hold in cities and counties as means to curb the spread of the novel virus and mitigate the social and financial distress caused by it. These governments are pledging not to execute warrants of eviction for certain periods of time, often 90 days. This is a risk for landlords who may end up housing tenants who don't or can't pay rent. 

 

Analysis and Reports

 

Managing Capital Projects and Programs During a Time of Uncertainty - CBRE

In this very unusual time, construction projects face many challenges. Project management services are specifically suited to represent the owner’s interests in managing risk through all economic conditions and guide projects to successful outcomes. Well-managed projects can help building occupiers be successful in their business ventures and ultimately support global recovery. With that in mind, we recommend evaluating critical components of four key project areas:

 

U.S. Hotel Viewpoint | An Updated 2020 Outlook - CBRE

Economic conditions are deteriorating quickly with the Covid-19 outbreak causing a sharp drop in economic activity. Hotels are experiencing a significant contraction to demand. Our current expectations are that as early as Q3 2020, activity will begin to stabilize, and a recovery is expected to be underway by Q4.
 
CBRE Hotels Research has released a preliminary 2020 forecast that analyzes the impact of the pandemic on hotel performance and provides insight as to how hotels may start to recover in the back half of the year. 

 

With COVID-19, modeling takes on life and death importance - Science.Org

On 16 March, the Imperial College group published a dramatically revised model that concluded—based on fresh data from the United Kingdom and Italy—that even a reduced peak would fill twice as many intensive care beds as estimated previously, overwhelming capacity. The only choice, they concluded, was to go all out on control measures. At best, strict measures might be periodically eased for short periods, the group said (see graphic, below). The U.K. government shifted course within days and announced a strict lockdown.

This report has since been scaled back due to the results of efforts to slow the virus. 

 

How Much Worse the Coronavirus Could Get, in Charts - NY Times

An op-ed piece in the New York Times estimates 100 million people in the U.S could be infected with the virus in the coming weeks. The timing of those 100 million cases is crucial as they could overwhelm our existing healthcare systems. We have approximately 95,000 ICU beds in the U.S., which operate at about 90% capacity at any given time. An infection timeline with an early/high peak such as this could result in over 350,000 ICU cases at the peak – resulting in a massive shortage of beds, ventilators, and treatment options for not only COVID-19 patients but patients with seasonal influenza and other respiratory illnesses as well.

 

Insightful Forum Discussions

 

Coronavirus and Late or No Rent Payments - BiggerPockets

A thread with ideas on how to work with tenants during this economic slowdown. There are landlords who seem to be compassionate and others who draw a hard line. Regardless, the thread may help you brainstorm your own ideas.

 

What will be the impact of the Coronavirus crisis on real estate? - BiggerPockets

A long discussion with many different participants offering their perspective. The concerns range from low-income tenants not being able to pay rents to AirBnB cancellations. There are sensationalist posts within this thread as expected, but if you look past them you'll gain valuable insight and actionable advice. 

 

Corona Virus Cases are getting worse! should I buy now or wait? - BiggerPockets

A good discussion on whether or not you should still be in acquisition mode through the current economic crisis. Mixed opinions ranging from "a good deal is a good deal" to "wait it out."

 

Megathread on Coronavirus's impact on Real Estate - Reddit

This thread seems to be the best general thread on Reddit that we could find that provides updates on how Coronavirus is impacting different areas of the nation. There are great insights in the thread and localized updates/advice. Highly recommend tracking this one. 

 

Government, Tax, and Legal

 

The Real Estate CPA's Summary of Recent Legislation (Report)

We've compiled a summary of all recent legislation and have included details and planning tips important for real estate investors. 

 

Disaster Loan Assistance - SBA

Federal Disaster Loans for businesses, private nonprofits, homeowners, and renters. Here is more information on the program: https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/disaster-assistance.

 

IRS Coronavirus Tax Relief Webpage

This webpage will be continually update with IRS press releases, tools, and resources to help taxpayers. 

The IRS has officially extended the payment and filing deadlines for federal taxes and returns to July 15th, 2020. 

 

AICPA State Tax Filing Guidance (downloadable)

Many states are extending their tax filing deadlines. This document aggregates the decisions states are making across the U.S.