COVID-19 Accelerated Virtual Home Buying Shift For Physicians And Real Estate Agents

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The DRS Agent Network reported a spike in virtual home buying over physical walk-throughs for relocating doctors in 2020.

“My wife and I had planned to fly there to tour some homes, but the ensuing lockdown in March would have required a two-week quarantine,” said Chase Beal, D.O. “No way would that ever work, so we moved ahead virtually.”

DRS Agent™ Network, a network of real estate agents who specialize in the home relocation needs of doctors, today reported that since the start of the pandemic, physicians on the front line have increasingly tapped the expertise of real estate agents who can help them buy a home site unseen, as well as serve their specific needs.

A monthly survey of National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) members in April of 2020 cited that one quarter of their REALTORS® had helped clients with a purchase contract without having physically seen the property. This coronavirus-prompted move toward digital home buying has especially spiked amongst relocating physicians.

One physical medicine and rehabilitation doctor, who finished medical school in Las Vegas, Nevada and was matched with a Cleveland, Ohio residency at Metro Health saw his in-person home buying plans halted. “My wife and I had planned to fly there to tour some homes, but the ensuing lockdown in March would have required a two-week quarantine,” said Chase Beal, D.O. “No way would that ever work, so we moved ahead virtually.”

Beal stated that a referral to Jeffrey Resnick, who had past experience working with doctors’ unique realty needs, combined with newer technologies in the field, helped make for a smooth real estate transaction. Resnick, who comes from a long line of family physicians, works for Keller Williams Greater Cleveland Northeast. He has been a part of the DRS Agent network for four years, and since the rise of the pandemic has helped facilitate three virtual home buys for physicians.

“In buying without an in-person walk-through, a physician must have complete trust that their real estate agent will show them both the good and bad sides of any home, and fully understand their specific needs, down to how he or she wants to receive communication at every step of the process,” said Resnick.

Daniel Frank, founder of the DRS Agent Network, said this quick shift towards virtual home buying out of necessity speaks volumes about the adaptability of its network of agents. “These men and women who cater specifically to doctors’ unique real estate needs are meeting the challenges that this pandemic has thrust upon their businesses,” said Frank.

In the Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington metro areas, Bryan Arakelian, who has been a Realtor for 31 years and works for RE/MAX Equity Group, saw that business would be vastly different when home showing instructions changed during the early part of the coronavirus pandemic. “It was obvious that, as agents we would need to adapt.” Since that time, he has had two doctors buy homes, site unseen; both doctors shared that the homes were even better than expected.

Denver, Colorado real estate agent Jen Riley, who works for RE/MAX Professionals, said that currently 63% of her business comes from physicians, due in part to her long history as an RN working in critical care, as well as being married to a physician. She stated that she has also seen an uptick in virtual relocation needs of doctors, having completed three recent similar transactions for physician clients.

“The biggest hurdle for me [in virtual transactions] is the worry about whether the person will like the home or not,” said Riley. “It’s a bit nerve racking as an agent; so far though, out of the three transactions, all three doctors are happy.”

While it is unlikely that the majority of physicians will continue to buy homes without setting foot in them as vaccinations continue and the country gets the pandemic under control, it is clear that DRS Agents have managed to embrace the new COVID protocols in 2021. For those physicians able to travel, seeing a home in person is now possible but good agents must know how to properly and safely show the homes while keeping the seller and the buyer safe. However, time-crunched doctors may likely embrace the virtual showing trend for the longer term, as long as they can locate agents with specific physician experience who can facilitate digital transactions, and have continued positive outcomes.

About DRS Agent Network

The Certified DRS Agent designation and network are committed to serving the real estate needs of the medical professional community through education and marketing resources. The DRS Agent Network is the only nationwide agent network working with medical professionals and certified with a Certified DRS Agent designation. The designation is limited to fewer than 1% of real estate professionals nationwide, and clearly differentiates the abilities of member agents from their peers. For more information regarding the DRS Agent Network, please visit: http://www.drsagent.com

DRS Agent Contact:
Daniel Frank, Founder
Email: dfrank@drsagent.com
Phone: 678-612-4010

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