Each January, real estate experts start throwing out their market predictions for the coming year. These predictions are based on a number of different figures, including data compiled in the Existing Home Sales Report released by the National Association of Realtors. These reports give investors a clearer picture of what they can expect in the months ahead. While we won’t really know until the end of the year if these predictions are correct, here are the expectations for the 2015 housing market.
-Prices on existing homes will increase.
-Homes will fly off the market (this is already happening in Bryan/College Station).
-Mortgage rates may increase, though they’ll still be considered low.
-New homes are being built, and the number will continue to rise, getting closer to the average number needed in order to balance out the market.
Not only are these facts and figures helpful on a national level, it’s also great knowledge to have when you’re ready to delve into your local market.
Why is now a great time to find out what’s happening locally?
-It’s important to know how much your home is worth. Home improvements and upgrades can certainly increase the value of your home, but ultimately, it’s the local market that dictates worth.
-If you’re thinking of selling, getting an accurate picture of the current market can help you decide if this is an ideal time to put your home up for sale.
-If you’re thinking of buying, knowing the statistics of the local market and how much homes in your desired neighborhood are selling for is a valuable tool to help you decide how much you’ll need to invest into the home of your dreams.
So far this year, professionals in the local real estate market such as myself, have been blown away by what we have seen! Properties that have been listed before and sat cold on the market for months are flying off the shelves in a matter of days. Homes that normally would have been sold in 30 days are selling in 30 minutes. Local inventory is at all time lows, and continuing to decline, while home buyers are suddenly coming out of the woodwork. This obviously makes for an interesting seller’s market!
If you are looking to buy, you’ll want to be prepared with a lender approval letter, earnest money and option money of 1% of the sales price (a minimum of $1000) in your bank account. Always make sure to bring your checkbook with you when you go house shopping. You will want to be prepared to pay over asking price (and even sometimes as much as $10,000 over asking) in order to be the buyer that gets their offer accepted. In this current market, it’s important to be open-minded about your purchase, as options are very limited. You’ll want an agent that can keep you updated on listings the minute they come on the market. When a listing comes up, my experience has taught me that I need to be prepared at a moment’s notice, in order to get that home secured for my buyers.
Being connected in our real estate community is important as well. More times than I can count, I have sold listings that weren’t even on the market yet, simply because I found out about them before the public. It is so important to have a connected agent who works in your favor! Often times we are making offers before we even see a home in order to secure our place in the negotiations. You must work with an aggressive, experienced agent who is willing to go to work for you any time you need them. If your agent is unable to do that, make sure to give me a call. Even if I have another appointment, I have other agents on standby, ready open doors so that you do not miss out on the home that is perfect for you!
If this all seems overwhelming, remember not to let it scare you! It definitely makes for an exciting real estate adventure, but when you win the bid for the house you love, it will all be worth it!
If you’re ready to know more, give me a call! Sellers, I will give you a free estimate of your home’s value and can answer any real estate questions you may have. Buyers, I can get a flash set up so the MLS sends you listings to meet your needs so that you are aware right away when your new home comes on the market. Keep my phone number saved in your phone and remember, I am never too busy for you or your referrals. If you know someone looking to buy or sell real estate, please let me know!
Kristi Fox Satsky, REALTOR®
*All information used with permission from ©2015 Buffini & Company. All rights reserved.