When I tell people I'm a Realtor I always get asked "how's the market?" The complete answer requires an explanation, and it's longer than what can be said in idle chit chat, so why not blog about it:
The foreclosure market is doing well, but it's also driving prices down making it hard for home owners trying to sell compete with bank owned properties. The deals can be hard to pass by when you see a home that sold for $350,000 three years back sell for $150,000 in today's market. Taking advantage of the $8,000 tax credit is even more tempting for "first time" home buyers, and so are relatively low interest rates.
Buyers, Sellers, and Agents are facing hard times. No sales means no income for agents. Strict lending and instability in the market make it difficult for buyers, and competing with foreclosures makes it next to impossible for sellers. Many agents have adapted to the new market and are now essentially working for banks performing "BPO's" (Broker Price Opinions.) Home sellers are looking at alternatives such as renting their property, or considering a short sale if in distress. Buyers are looking for ways to save enough cash towards a down payment, get financing, and improve credit scores.
There's no doubt about it: times are changing. Initially, people just wanted to point fingers- play the blame game. Politicians said it was failure to regulate lending practices, democrats blamed Bush, and republicans blamed dems! Some said it was outsourcing, or the fall of the auto industry. The blame game doesn't work, however, and nobody wins by playing it. What we need are results. Put the past behind in order to sort out the future. Survival depends upon the ability to adapt. Be liquid. One a brighter side- we are seeing more activity: More phone calls, and more showings!
Tomorrow is the kick-off of the fourth of July weekend- have fun everyone!
Jared Hammond, REALTOR
Coldwell Banker Harbor Springs
Sales and Property Management