How COVID has changed the Springfield area real estate market

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- The coronavirus has changed the way realtors do business.

Without buyers being able to go into just any home, those who are walking through-- are very serious lookers.

Even during this pandemic, people are still buying and selling and moving homes.

Realtors tell us right now, there are more buyers out looking, and not quite enough homes to be found.

"We had to get pre-approved with our realtor Charity before we were able to look at houses," said Craig Donaldson. He is in the market-- looking to sell and buy.

"It's different. Things look a lot different online than they do in person. You get excited about a house online and then look in person and it's completely different," he said.

If he is stepping inside, it's because he's serious about buying it.

"We are able to show properties, but with quite a bit of restrictions," said realtor Charity Fitzgerald with Murney/Michelle Cantrell Group. Fitzgerald is outfitted with all the gear.

"Oh yes, we have to wear masks, gloves, I bring Clorox wipes and sanitizer with me and shoe booties," she said.

Buyers mean business and must be pre-approved to view a house in person. Otherwise, they're only touring properties virtually.

"We're excited that we get to be an essential business because people are still buying and selling and I think when you are stuck at home with your family, you think maybe I need a house with a home office, or I need a basement now to have a space for my kids, or my house is too big we don't even use half of this space, let's downsize," Fitzgerald said.

She says the pandemic has home owners considering what they are really looking for in a home-- that has truly become their castle.

"I got four buyers this weekend and I am going to Mount Vernon, to Lebanon, to Nixa, where we are at right now. They're still out there looking. You have to be pre-approved though, that's the main thing. With sellers being kind of leery to put their houses on the market because of the coronavirus, you have to make sure that your buyer is pre-approved with the bank before we'll allow you to go into a property," she said.

Open houses are a thing of the past for now. All must be done virtually, or some realtors do a walk-through on Facebook live.