July 29, 2020 at 11:25am | Denise Bodman

Hi Everyone!

I am here wishing you all good health and happiness during these unprecedented times. It’s times like these we would normally ask our parents or grandparents for advice, but this is new territory for all of us and we are each navigating as best as possible. We WILL persevere and get through this together, as true Austinites do!!!

My husband and I traveled to Las Vegas for his birthday in February, just before Covid-19 hit the States. We stayed at Bellagio and it was wonderfully decorated for the Chinese New Year – my year – the Year of the Rat. Despite the festive season, this was the slowest I had ever seen Vegas. The city was still bustling, but definitely not as busy as other times we had visited.

Of course, we had no idea that this virus would hit the States about 4 weeks later. We had been keeping up with the news overseas as we have family and friends that both live in Asia or visit frequently.. But still, we felt safe. However, all of our feelings of safety changed as we closed our office on March 13, 2020. The Mayor of Austin shut down our city a week later and canceled our wonderful SXSW. [Side Note: The next time SXSW is here I plan to buy VIP tickets, because I missed it so very much. The festival is truly one of my favorite events in Austin.]

Dreaming of SXSW and other events that I miss dearly has me longing for life to return to normal. Life changed in an instant - businesses closed, events canceled. I am hopeful that the feeling of safety can return to all of us soon, but we will need to weather this storm together first. I am a big believer in wearing masks and have seen other countries do this and have not been upset or inconvenienced.. Please wear your mask too, this will help us all. Real estate during this time has been very interesting.

Real estate agents have had to adjust with the new norms learning to navigate this new environment with safety precautions such as personal protective equipment (PPE) and how/when to show spaces safely to clients if at all possible. Renters have been particularly interesting as they have traveled out and toured new homes for themselves but don’t want you to tour their homes to re-lease. Creativity has been key and luckily we have been able to come up with innovative solutions to accommodate clients, such as virtual tours using “FaceTime.” Technology has really pushed business forward during this pandemic even when it may not have seemed possible.

Even in these trying times - Real Estate Sales have gone through the roof!!! In fact, one of the major pitfalls of the recent market has not been demand, but supply. I feel for our clients that get “contract fatigue” due to multiple offer situations. Unfortunately, this market stress is just par for the course without enough inventory.

Speaking of inventory, we are still going strong with our exclusive listings for condominium developments on the East side of Austin – and now we have been awarded one at 25th and Lamar. I love condo living, and we feel very comfortable and safe in our building. We have had strong sales on all of our listings across the board.

Though these times may be busy for the real estate market, not every industry is going as strong. I like to support local businesses as much as I can. Not sure if everyone remembers my favorite sandwich place in town – Mums – well, it closed along with several other local favorites. However, they still have food trucks in a few places and will deliver once a week when you order online. Eating great food definitely keeps me going!

What are some of your favorite places? Let’s keep supporting each other and we will get through this together!





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