The first wave of the pandemic made many people hesitant to make any changes especially such large ones, like selling or buying a home, and rightfully so. The spring market, which is usually quite good, slowed way down. But today, things are heating up. This uptick in the housing market can be attributed to those who have put home selling/buying on the back burner during the pandemic shut down are now braving the waters. Because: 1) businesses have opened up and an air of “business as usual” has commenced, 2) people having a better sense of where they stand with employment, and 3) of months of isolation at home, people are realizing the importance of loving one’s home–people are starting to gain more confidence and move forward with decisions to sell and buy. With low interest rates and low inventory, buyers and sellers should and are taking the plunge.
For sellers, home prices hold steady for the most part, but a rise is forecasted. While this shortage of homes remains, many homeowners are taking advantage and seeking a higher price than they might have in January. Also, because of recent events and uncertainty, many homeowners are willing to sit tight and hold tight to their asking price.
While the low inventory and steady prices indicate a sellers’ market, there are some advantages to buying now. For buyers, it is an opportunity to buy a home at the lowest interest rate since 1971 at 3.23% on a 30-year mortgage.
Whether you are buying or selling in this new normal, here is some advice to get you started:
- Get a hyper-local real estate agent you feel comfortable with and trust. Allow them to help you consider what price to sell your home for which will help you to be realistic and minimize the emotions of selling a home with sentimental attachments.
- Price your home competitively! Don’t go too far over the mark and then risk your home sitting on the market too long. If you have a desirable home in a desirable location, you might find that pricing it 10% under value, will help get many interested parties who are willing to bid and bid again, hence creating a bidding war. It has more of a risk factor but can have huge payouts.
- Get busy making repairs. The home inspection will certainly lead to some additional repairs, but you can get a head start and repair issues that will be noticeable to homebuyers.
- Declutter and depersonalize as soon as possible!
- Get it ready for showings!
- Find the right agent for you that you feel comfortable asking questions and sharing personal information that will help them to find the perfect home for you. The agent has to be someone you connect with and whom you feel you can be honest and direct.
- Get started as soon as possible to allow yourself to find a great home in the areas that are your favorites.
- Be ready to bite the bullet when “that home” becomes available. When there is low inventory, bids come in quickly and you could miss your chance. Have your pre-approval ready and be ready to move fast.
- If you love a place, keep your offer simple! Too many contingencies, etc… can slow the process and hurt your chances with a hot property. And, make a competitive offer. Consider offering full ask price without going over your maximum budget.
- Be flexible. Remember that all homes will have their flaws and negatives. Beforehand, make a list of must haves versus wants and be ready to be flexible on that for the right location.
- Write a note to the seller. Many people are sentimental and filling them in on the type of homeowner you will be, can make the difference in which offer they choose. Keep it succinct and try to make an emotional connection with the owners.
Summer is in full swing, and a heat wave is upon us, not to mention the housing market is heating up too. So, take advantage! If you are considering selling or buying a home, the time is now. Let me help you with all your buying and selling needs.