Sales of the real estate sector in Managua were reduced by more than 50% in 2018, affirmed Friday the company Keller Williams (KW Nicaragua), which brings together almost 200 real estate agents across the country.
The regional director of KW Nicaragua, Roberto Serrano (son), explained that a combination of factors has influenced that fall in the real estate market.
"From the economic point of view, because there are people who, once they have no work, can no longer buy or rent a house. On the other hand, there is the financing. A good part of the sales that were made was through loans. There is also the part of insecurity, which is very important. And so there is a series of things that influence, "said Serrano.
Meanwhile, Roberto Serrano (father), CEO of KW Nicaragua, said that despite this fall in the real estate market, real estate agents calmly take the current situation of crisis in the country, to stay in business "day a day".
Precisely why they developed this Friday the panel "Opportunities in Real Estate in a Crisis Economy", which was attended by all the agents of that company.
"In Nicaragua, houses are being sold. The market has dropped, as the graphs say, by more than 50% in the municipality of Managua. So, what we emphasize is to train our agents and let them see that there are businesses that follow the model we have and we will continue doing business, "said the CEO of KW Nicaragua.
He said that tourist areas have been affected in relation to a fall in property prices. "There we have prices that have dropped between 30% and 50%," he said.
The crisis has forced advisers or real estate agents to "adjust," said KW Nicaragua's regional director, Roberto Serrano (son).
"If we really are not prepared with a model and a system with which you can do business in a time of crisis, many really go out of business. We have seen many developers who have stopped making houses right now, and many agencies that have closed, and real estate agents who have gone to other countries to do business, "said Roberto Serrano.
According to the specialist, some companies currently work with less than half of their real estate agents they had before the crisis. "A good part has left the market," he said.
The CEO of KW Nicaragua said that the crisis in the business of the rental of houses and properties has also had an impact at the national level.
"What happens is that they are running out of their budgets (of people or companies), probably they ran out of any work of the people of the house and they have to go to a lower value building, but for that they have to find the best price possible. Other people are leaving the houses they rented because they are leaving the country, and now there is an oversupply, "said Serrano.
María Dolores Barreto, real estate sales consultant, admitted that she had to change her business strategy a bit.
"The moment of crisis for me was rather a moment of opportunity, because I followed the model of Keller Williams and helped me survive at the time of the crisis, seizing the area of rents and now I am focusing on wanting to close sales, because yes you can looking for properties that really are within the market price, and customers who are looking to buy, "he said.
FACING THE CRISIS
Roberto Serrano, CEO of KW Nicaragua, an international franchise, said that many times the business focus is lost during a crisis and the main activity is stopped.
"The day to day is for us to make appointments every day. If we can do the number of appointments that we propose, it allows us even in crisis to obtain the profits that we want. What is done is that if I had 10 appointments before to be able to capture a property or make a sale, now maybe I have to do 20 or 30 to achieve the same results as last year. It's a numbers game, "Serrano explained.
The officials of KW Nicaragua say they have an ace up their sleeve: In 2018, although their sales fell by more than half, the acquisition of properties grew by 100%. "What does that mean? That there is more demand for our services, "said Serrano, the CEO of the company.
For his part, the regional director of KW Nicaragua said that growth expectations go to achieve greater growth in this 2019 on the side of income.
Alejandro Castillo, one of the real estate agents, said that "we are betting that all this (sociopolitical crisis of the country) will happen and when it happens we will be ready to move forward ... We are working not only for the moment, but also for the future" .
Castillo explained that the real estate sector is being affected by the lack of credit to the real estate sector and the uncertainty of the investors, which in his opinion would be resolved if there was an early "socio-political solution" to the crisis in Nicaragua.