Friday, December 15, 2017

Slight Softening could be Golden Opportunity

Prices are stable in the local market with modest appreciation in values. I am seeing a little bit of a bump in inventory which is a much needed softening of the heavy seller's market we battled last spring.

Buyers that were frustrated over the summer with multiple offers and aggressive competition for property in what was a very tight inventory situation, may find that things tempered a bit. It seems like the number of buyers has lightened a touch and a modest gain in sellers is leveling the market into a healthy near neutral condition that just slightly favors sellers.

This is more evident in the upper price ranges but even in the sub-median market I see openings for buyers. Interest rates are nudging up and that can lower the buying power of buyers. This current moderation in the market coupled with still very low mortgage rates could be a golden opportunity to strike a deal for a house.

The classic fence sitters are faced with an opportunity that may not be around by summer. With rates on government backed mortgages still in the low 4s, and a slight flattening in appreciation, the time is now for buyers. Buyers should remember that historically speaking, any rate under 6% is a "low" rate. We have been under 6% for a very long time so some people may be under the delusion that 5% is a "high" rate.

I have written on this very blog about the dangers of waiting for a better price in a rising rate market. Rate will almost always hurt the bottom line more than price. Most analysts are predicting a modest gain in values for 2018 and rates are trending up which amounts to the classic "double jeopardy" scenario.

Get off that fence!

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