Real estate market booms on Long Island as COVID-19 lockdowns end

Lorraine Ferretti is getting paperwork together for agents planning to hold in-person open houses now that Long Island is well into Phase 2 of the reopening. The paperwork consists of essential questions for prospective buyers including whether they’ve experienced any symptoms of COVID-19 in the past 14 days.

Ferretti, who is the office manager at Remax Best in West Babylon, has spent the past month retrofitting the office.

“At the front and at the back door we have sanitizing stations,” Ferretti said. “The common areas in the office have to be disinfected twice a day and whenever anyone uses them and that’s the copier, computer, and even the bathrooms.”

Changes also include - new dividers to separate agents and staff. There will also be staggered appointments with only 4-5 people all in masks inside the office at once. Ferretti says it’s different from the way it used to be.

“Agents could come in and out and bring buyers in whenever they wanted,” she said. “We’d make sure we had plenty of coffee, snacks on the back bar but all that’s changed.”

Broker owner Mike Carroll says the market heavily favors sellers and the boom we’re seeing is comparable to sales in back the 90s.

“I think we sold half our inventory since last Wednesday,” said Carroll.  

Robert Quercia’s Bay Shore home was among the sales.

“It’s time for a change and taxes are too expensive here,” he said.

What’s going first? Experts say anything under $450k with the majority of sellers getting asking price and above. It’s unclear how long the run will last. With only one person allowed inside during an open house - agents will be working longer hours.

“We had to keep the people separated, we had lines of cars down the street, we had to provide a mask and gloves for everyone,” Carroll said.

Adjusting to the new normal while making sure safety remains the number one priority.


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