As we near the end of 2016, our market has leveled out considerably. However, as you’ll see, there is still good news for buyers and sellers heading into the last part of the fourth quarter.
2016 is almost over, so it’s time to look back on what’s happened in the real estate market over the past year to get a good idea of what you should expect heading into the last months of the fourth quarter.
At the start of the year, the market was so strong that we couldn’t list homes fast enough. Current sellers have the perception that the market is still that strong, but it’s actually slowed down since then. There are still a few hot areas in our market, but that’s more due to the attractiveness of specific price points. In general, we’re seeing price reductions across the board.
Since perception is what we’re dealing with, it’s worth mentioning that many people assumed that the market must have been crazy year over year during the summer, when in fact the third quarter numbers (July to September) tell a different story. Compared to the third quarter of last year, the difference in the number of homes listed was literally just one house: 4,771 in 2015 vs. 4,772 in 2016. As you can see, after the initial onslaught, things leveled out considerably.
In predicting what will happen for the rest of the fourth quarter, we look at seasonality and year over year numbers. We’ve been talking about an impending downshift for the last 18 months or so, and now with the election over and interest rates beginning to rise, we should see that downshift happening soon.
However, there is still good news. Though they’re beginning to increase, we still have great interest rates. If you’re a buyer, you can still save a lot of money by buying a house now. Not only that, but you’ll have less competition from other buyers.
If you’re a seller, you should see a lot of buyers entering the market very soon because they thought they couldn’t compete in the previous quarter’s market. These buyers are less likely to suffer from buyer’s remorse, and during the inspection period, they’re less likely to get cold feet and flake out. As with buyers, you should also face less competition.
Stay tuned for our full 2016 market recap coming in January. In the meantime, if you have any questions or you’re thinking about buying or selling, please reach out to us so we can help you be on your way!