North Texas real estate professionals still taking risks in uncertain times

Year-over-year data indicates a significant change to the real estate market in the Keller-Roanoke-northeast Fort Worth area. (Katherine Borey/Community Impact Newspaper)
Year-over-year data indicates a significant change to the real estate market in the Keller-Roanoke-northeast Fort Worth area. (Katherine Borey/Community Impact Newspaper)

Year-over-year data indicates a significant change to the real estate market in the Keller-Roanoke-northeast Fort Worth area. (Katherine Borey/Community Impact Newspaper)

Image description
According to real estate agent Raquelle Renfro with Dani Hampton Group, the industry has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic by conducting more business through digital media. (Katherine Borey/Community Impact Newspaper)
As word of the COVID-19 virus spread across the country, real estate agents were some of the first to experience a disruption to their industry.

Year-over-year data from the North Texas Real Estate Information System indicates a significant change to the real estate market in the Keller-Roanoke-Northeast Fort Worth area.

Almost across the board, the number of new listings and homes under contract in March 2020 are down from the previous year in ZIP codes 76177, 76244, 76248 and 76262.

“We are still out there working, showing homes and taking risks to ensure clients get their money on time and rates for loans do not expire,” said Raquelle Renfro, a single mother of three and a real estate agent with Dani Hampton Group in Southlake.

According to Renfro, many buyers are scared and would prefer to not leave the house. Agents have responded by conducting business through digital media, she said, such as photos, videos, Apple Facetime and text messages.


The group also utilizes a virtual walk-through tool, Renfro said, which allows home buyers to virtually stand in the doorway of their favorite home. Buyers can then travel throughout a home with the click of a mouse, she said.

“A lot of it is about reassuring people [about what they are buying],” Renfro said. “Building trust with clients is important. They are trusting me to go to these houses and get information without them being able to see it.”

An estimated 80% of business happens through social media now, she said.

The challenge has been finding new buyers, but the group remains focused on spreading the “virtual word" and helping buyers and sellers while practicing social distancing, Renfro said.

Agents are also paying close attention to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, she said. Lysol wipes and hand sanitizer are used often, and agents, buyers and others entering a home are provided gloves for the hands and booties for the feet.

“There are things you never had to think about before, like touching light switches and doorknobs,” Renfro said. “We are making sure we are doing our part as listing agents [so] that whoever walks into a house is taking proper precautions.”
By Ian Pribanic
Ian Pribanic covers city government, transportation, business and education news for Community Impact Newspaper in the Keller-Roanoke-Northeast Fort Worth areas. A Washington D.C. native and University of North Texas graduate, Ian was previously an editor for papers in Oklahoma, West Texas and for Community Impact in New Braunfels.


MOST RECENT

The business opened in the Richardson Heights Shopping Center 16 years ago. (Makenzie Plusnick/Community Impact)
ROUNDUP: How DFW businesses are faring amid COVID-19

Here are 10 recent updates on the metroplex business and restaurant community, with stories on new businesses opening, old businesses struggling, owners making innovations and more.

Census population estimates show growth in Fort Worth and Roanoke, decline in Keller in 2019. (Katherine Borey/Community Impact Newspaper)
Census population estimates show growth in Fort Worth and Roanoke, decline in Keller in 2019

The city of Keller’s population increased roughly 18.5% from 2010-2017 but has begun to level off in recent years.

In April, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced that independent, freestanding ERs in Texas and several other states can be recognized health care providers eligible for reimbursement for treating Medicaid and Medicare patients during the coronavirus pandemic. (Cherry He/Community Impact Newspaper)
Freestanding ERs in Texas can now care for Medicaid, Medicare patients during pandemic

In April, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced that independent, freestanding ERs in Texas and several other states can be recognized health care providers eligible for reimbursement for treating Medicaid and Medicare patients during the coronavirus pandemic.

Here are the latest coronavirus updates for the Keller, Roanoke and Northeast Fort Worth-area. (Community Impact staff)
Coronavirus Latest: Tarrant County confirms 96 new cases; 30th death occurs in Denton County

Tarrant County officials have reported 96 new cases of novel coronavirus in the past 24 hours.

Mimi Conner (right) unloads food from her car after picking up nonperishable foods from the North Texas Food Bank and purchasing foods from Aldi, with help from volunteer Michelle Leavitt. (Liesbeth Powers/Community Impact Newspaper)
North Texas Food Bank says new donation will provide 300,000 meals for residents in need

The North Texas Food Bank received a $100,000 donation from online retailer Amazon as the nonprofit continues to provide meals for residents in need.

In observance of the Memorial Day holiday, city offices will be closed in Keller, Roanoke and Fort Worth on May 25. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
City facilities closed for Memorial Day in Keller, Roanoke and Fort Worth

In observance of the Memorial Day holiday, city offices will be closed in Keller, Roanoke and Fort Worth on May 25.

The state-run testing program is expected to return to other areas of Collin County on a rotating basis every two weeks, according to a May 14 release from Collin County. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Expanded testing, population growth in Frisco and 3 other DFW-area stories

Here are five recent updates from the Dallas-Fort Worth area, on a butcher shop in Keller, expanded COVID-19 testing in Collin County and more.

texas-reopening
LIST: What is open, closed in Texas and how businesses can operate

Texas openings are staggered with different opening dates and operating limits.

The testing sites use self-swab tests for those who meet Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria. (Chase Autin/Community Impact Newspaper)
New CVS drive-thru COVID-19 testing locations announced across Dallas-Fort Worth area, state

CVS Health is opening 44 new COVID-19 test sites at drive-thru locations across Texas, including a number of locations in the DFW area, according to a May 21 announcement by Gov. Greg Abbott.

All patients, residents and staff at Texas' 23 state hospitals and supported living centers are to be tested for coronavirus. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Texas to test all state hospitals, supported living centers for COVID-19

All patients, residents and staff at Texas' 23 state hospitals and supported living centers will be tested for coronavirus regardless of symptoms or exposure.

As a precaution, Discovery Senior Living announced May 4 it has begun a national program of targeted COVID-19 testing. (Ian Pribanic/Community Impact Newspaper)
Discovery Senior Living in Northeast Fort Worth testing residents, staff for COVID-19

As a precaution, Discovery Senior Living announced May 4 it has begun a national program of targeted COVID-19 testing.

MARKET DATA: New listings, homes under contract decrease in Keller, Roanoke, Northeast Fort Worth

Data from the Greater Fort Worth Association of Realtors indicates a significant decrease in new home listings and homes under contract from April 2019 to April 2020.