The craziness of the spring and early summer market has subsided. The prices have stabilized as well. The buyers were chasing after the sellers before, but now it’s the opposite. This isn’t always the case but I’ve had this happen a couple times this past month. In one situation, the sellers didn’t agree to what the buyer requested after the home inspection so the buyer voided the contract. The sellers then came back a week later and agreed to the original terms, but the buyer had already moved on to something else. In these situations, the sellers are chasing the buyers since their homes are 30+ days on market in these late summer months.Most of the other desired homes have already sold or are under contract. July and August are generally considered the worst months to still have your home on the market. Most people have already purchased homes and are settling in before school starts or are on vacation. Currently, the market has slowed down a bit so there aren’t as many multiple offer situations.Having said that, people always ask me when is the best time to put their house on the market. Everyone thinks that spring is best, and generally that could be true. Yes, there are more buyers out looking, but there is also more competition due to greater inventory. This past spring was an optimal time for sellers to list their home because of record low inventory. However, it depends on the overall market. If the inventory is high for instance, then the spring may not be the best time to put your home on the market. One has to look at the overall state of the market to assess the best time. I think any time can be good because people are always moving due to life events (people get job relocations, people get married, first time buyers, etc). I think if you can wait until the spring, great - but there are always buyers and sellers throughout the entire year. I’ve purchased during the week of Christmas before and it was great. No one else was out looking in the snow!
So what’s the real estate forecast? Some experts maintain that the housing market will continue in the same trajectory for the next few years. Rates will continue to rise slowly, inventory will remain low, and buyers will outnumber sellers. If this is the case, sellers considering to list their home will be in a great position for the next few years. Conversely, other experts think there could be a recession shortly which would impact the housing market. Some indicators (based on a CNN money article) include declining home sales in four of the past five months while housing prices have grown, and wages remaining stagnant. Many people can’t afford to buy homes, and those who can are taking on a lot of debt to get into them. This is echoing what happened right before the Great Recession in 2008. So what should people do? Buyers ask me if they should buy now or wait. They don’t want to miss out on appreciation since home prices have been rising recently, or they are afraid of buying at the height of the market with the possible threat of a looming recession. I think people should continue to be well informed on the state of the market to make good decisions. However, it’s too hard to time the market and predict the future. A recession may or may not happen. Make decisions based on your life goals and needs. If we all had crystal balls, we would all be rich.
I hope this was helpful. As you can see, I definitely have a pulse on the local market, know the prices of resale and new construction, as well as have local neighborhood knowledge, since I’m in the trenches daily helping my buyers and sellers. So please feel free to contact me, your local area expert, for any real estate needs and questions!
Source: Jin Chen's opinions as a Licensed REALTOR as of 8/4/18.