My husband and I had been Darby and Joan for a few years and then lockdown hit. Shock of shock! All our plans for the year – halted and now definitely scrapped and to top it, the children came back to live with us.
My first thoughts were how lucky that we could be safe and together and then the reality set in. I had a son arriving from Belgium. A foreign traveler in the home meant self-isolation a week before lockdown. The measures we took were exhausting and stringent with the potential risk of Coronavirus. I had survived numerous near-death experiences due to a persistent brain tumor and there was no way Covid-19 was going to claim me or a family member.
Level 5 began, and no one was sick. “Well of course not, “said the kids, “how could it be with such strict hygiene rules!”
Days were spent cooking and feeding and cleaning and gardening. Added to the mix was the cats and dogs that thought that Christmas was never going to end! It was eerily quiet – no traffic, no dogs barking – the world seemed to have stopped and every little sound of nature was amplified.
After a short while, I had had enough and a roster was designed – who cooked when, who was responsible for cleaning certain rooms, garden and home chores. I resigned from ironing and so my husband started seeing how far along he could get with the clothes in his cupboard – he was one of the few that went to work each day – and with far too many items of clothing – no ironing was required. The rest of us wore the non-creasing items of clothing and as often as possible.
Every day I tended my vegetable garden – it was my sanity as it allowed me peace and quiet time, even though my back broke most days. Apart from all the household chores I continued with on-line webinars and courses, Zoom meetings, got up to date with most of my work and clients and spent time on property portals and my listings. It became evident that things were changing in the property market in the areas I serviced. In the evenings I was exhausted and so when lockdown was extended it was with mixed reactions that I greeted the news.
Lockdown had allowed a slowness in some cases, but I didn’t have a spare minute to do what I had envisaged – there was no reading a novel or watching movie after movie. We seldom went out and when my husband came back from work, we would eagerly question him on what he had seen – such was the isolation.
From 1 May, it became evident that many buyers were ready to start viewing and buying – many with disbelief that real estate was zoned Level 2! And so my list of buyers to view properties began.
Come 1 June (Level 3), we were allowed to start work – sanitizer, masks, Covid-19 consent and waiver documentation, separate vehicles, social distancing, home offices and extra precautions was and still is the order of the day. And the pent-up demand started, welcomed by the lowest interest rates ever. Three months later and the market is still buoyant, however change is definitely on the horizon.
So the days have become weeks and then months. The question we all ask is when and if it will end; how many waves will we endure? How long will the interest rates stay this low? When will the present market change? When will we have the chance to travel, to see distant friends and family?
No one is going to forget 2020 – for many, it will be traumatic and for the lucky few it will be special. My hope is that everyone is in some way able to find a silver lining.
News from Pam Golding Properties.