The Light: The Fourth Tee | John Burns Real Estate Consulting

The Light: The Fourth Tee

It has been 15 weeks since stay-at-home orders were issued in most parts of the country. The housing market remains on solid footing, helped in part by some of the most substantial government intervention in history. So where are we in the cycle? Since golf is one of the few sports played right now (and Lesley’s high school son broke 70 from the blue tees this week!), we decided it should represent the benchmark for our recovery timeline.

We believe the nation is about to tee off on the fourth hole of the housing market recovery. The fourth hole represents a stage in the game where players may have started to gain confidence with a few good shots. It also represents a point on the course where players must settle down, implement the right strategies, and consider the future. Here are three golf tips for the housing industry:

Play the Course, Not your Opponent

The “course” is the consumer, and what the consumer demands is evolving at unprecedented speed. Now is not the time to look over your shoulder at your competitors. Instead, understand who your buyers or renters are, study their preferences more closely than ever, and pull the right club from your bag. In the Light, we have highlighted many consumer trends from the pandemic: geographic shifts, the need for more functional spaces in the home, outdoor amenities, and economic empathy among them. Concentrate on playing your game and don’t worry about what shots your competitors are taking.

Watch for Hazards

Our forecast for a bumpy recovery includes a potential increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations, the end of fiscal stimulus, an election, and many unforeseen events that could cost you extra strokes on your scorecard. Companies may have to pivot (again) to stay on the fairway. By continuing to check the course map and anticipating the hazards ahead, you improve your chances to avoid them.

Thank Your Coaches and Teammates

The pandemic came quickly, forcing some businesses to adapt their game as they played it. We have seen great examples of companies integrating successful, flexible, work-from-home strategies, developers and builders implementing technology to help their new consumers find the home buying information they need while keeping their existing residents connected and informed, and lenders and title representatives helping consumers close their homes virtually. The creativity of new home product and design our clients share with us across the country every day has been nothing less than astounding and is helping us advise our partners in ways we never imagined. We’ve also been reminded both internally and externally that there are employees behind these innovations. Now is the time to listen to your experienced coaches, assess your company’s existing rock stars, and recognize your company’s future leaders. They are your caddies—the ones who are helping you carry your bag and reading the greens.

The first few holes on the course to recovery have given many in the housing industry the confidence to succeed if they maintain focus and discipline. We see a lot of yardage in front of us with many holes yet to play, and complacency does not favor the long game. Continue to survey the landscape in front of you, listen to your caddies and coaches, and make smart decisions. We would love to be your caddy.



 Lesley Deutch If you have any questions, please contact Lesley Deutch, Managing Principal, at (561) 998-5814 or by email.
Ken Perlman If you have any questions, please contact Ken Perlman, Managing Principal, at (858) 281-7214 or by email.