10 years ago, the economy was in a tailspin headed by the real estate crisis. Many people who’d bought homes at the top of the market or had homes built in the early 2000’s tried to sell at the same time, flooding the market with inventory and bringing prices down fast. The people who didn’t have enough equity to sell either kept their property, sold it for a loss, fell into distress (short sale or foreclosure), or reluctantly rented it out. Distressed property sales would even make up the bulk of transactions in some areas for a few years.
Now we’re seeing pressure at the other end of the spectrum. If you look at the chart below, you can see how the spread between active listings and closed sales is starting to converge. What does that mean? Well, if you have a home sell, you have a much better chance of getting a decent price. In 2008, there were about 10 homes on the market for every house that sold, so if you were shopping then, you had a variety from which to choose. Today, there are about 2.5 homes on the market for every sale, meaning you’ll have a lot less competition!
What about buyers? I know you’re wondering, is it a buyer’s market right now? The answer is an affirmative NO! Inventory is tight, and buyers are regularly competing for attractive homes. This does NOT mean that you won’t be able to find a nice home; it’s just a little more difficult and you have to have a decent plan. Where do you want your home to be? What are your search criteria? Are you willing to renovate? These are things for which you will really need to home in, so you can move quickly at properties of interest.
Contrary to popular belief, you will also need an experienced, aggressive agent to help you accomplish your home sale and purchase goals. Besides having to help you properly negotiate a contract, you’ll also benefit from your agent’s other resources like lenders, contractors, title companies and in some cases, financial advisors. Feel free to give me a call at (443) 866-6728 if you’d like more information about buying or selling real estate in the Baltimore Metropolitan area.