Open houses attendance could fall amid coronavirus worries

Potential sellers are growing wary of letting the public into their homes

The latest gatherings to fall victim to the coronavirus could be open houses (Credit: iStock)
The latest gatherings to fall victim to the coronavirus could be open houses (Credit: iStock)

Coronavirus worries may be coming for New York City open houses, as sellers become more concerned about letting the general public into their homes.

Average attendance at open houses last weekend was 4.77 visitor groups, down from 5.62 the weekend before, according to Bloomberg, citing data from Halstead executive director of sales and leasing Fritz Frigan.

Frigan’s office, which monitors open house activity, has also seen one possible seller waver on whether to list a property over fears about visitors coming to see it. The broker told Bloomberg he is concerned about “a chilling effect” if the number of cases in New York City dramatically increases. New York City’s for-sale market is already contending with an oversupply of product.

The virus has already caused multiple real estate events to be postponed. Over the weekend, Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency as the number of cases in the state grew to more than 100.

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Jodi Freed, who was preparing to host an open house at her three-bedroom apartment in Queens on Saturday, ultimately decided to call off the showing over fears about the coronavirus spreading.

“I have a son with asthma and a daughter who has epilepsy, and I really don’t want a million strangers in and out of my house,” she told Bloomberg. “I didn’t want to put my family at risk.” [Bloomberg] — Eddie Small

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