February 2014 Real Estate Market

Greg Harrelson - C21 The Harrelson Group

First Quarter Observations

Just like last year, this year is going by quickly. Before we know it, we will be talking about 2015.

In this month's update, I want to discuss a few things that have come up so far this year. I have been getting a lot of calls and questions on the status of the market. In many cases, people are looking to sell their properties yet are still wanting to get a little more money.

Here are some common questions I have been asked this year:


Question: How much can I get for my property?

**Answer: Obviously, the answer to this question will vary from property to property. The important thing that you need to know is that the supply of property for sale in our area has decreased. In many cases, we see that the price we can sell your property for today is more than what it would have sold for 18 months ago.

It is also important to know that the market appears to be leveling off now that builders are back in our market. As usual, there are not a lot of controls on building which means that we will likely see too much supply listed for sale in another 18 months. Only time will tell, but logic tells us that now may be the time to maximize your selling price.

Question: Will I get more money if I wait to sell next year?

**Answer: This is a very good question. As we know, we cannot predict the future yet we can look at a few factors and make some logical decisions.

The first thing we need to look at is supply. If supply is on the decline, then prices have a chance to increase. In our market, supply has been low over the last few years and that is why prices increased. Based on new construction activity, we see that supply is increasing again - and that typically leads to a slight decrease in pricing.

Second, you need to consider interest rates. If you believe rates will increase next year then that would mean the prices could go down. As interest rates go up, buyers will not qualify for as much home. And that could put downward pressure on our asking prices.

Third, you need to look at why you are considering selling. If you are selling to purchase something else, then waiting for next year may cost you more money on your next purchase. I have seen too many cases where someone waits to get another $5000 for their property to later spend an additional $10,000 on the next property.

Question: How much money will I NET in my pocket if I sell this year?

**Answer: Please use my Seller Net Sheet Calculator to determine how much you would net in your pocket if you were to sell at different prices. Click Here to calculate your Net Proceeds Estimation.

Question: When is the best time of the year to sell?

**Answer: When you look at the MLS sales reports for the last few years, you will notice that sales are steady throughout the entire year. There may be a brief slow down around the two weeks of Christmas, yet other than that; things are steady during all seasons.

The best time to sell is when you are ready to make your move. Buyers are always searching the internet looking for a property. Buyers often buy when they see a property that fits their needs. The key to getting the most money for your property is to sell when inventory is low. So, if you agree that new construction will leads us to more supply than that means you should consider selling sooner than later.

Question: What do you do to market properties for sale?

**Answer: This is another great question that consumers often fail to ask. The truth is that every real estate agent does things differently. I think there are 2 types of agents when it comes to marketing.

Passive Agents: A passive agent is one who lists your property, puts in the MLS and then waits for a buyer. Or, they hold an Open House and hope that people drop by. This is what I refer to as the "do something and wait" method.

Personally, I do not believe in this approach. I think there are things that an agent can do to create demand for your property other than the MLS.

Active Agents: An active agent is one that has a written marketing plan to sell a property. They may use flyers, YouTube videos, internet advertising, and they often use telephone prospecting as ways to promote your property. This is what I refer to as the "do something to create" method.

Real estate is a competitive business and an agent needs to do something more than use the MLS to get a property sold. I do agree that the MLS is a great tool, yet an aggressive marketing plan will always create a sale and will likely produce the highest price.

I think all of these are excellent questions to be asking an agent prior to listing a property for sale.

As for the status of our local real estate market, the market is very active. We have seen a significant increase in buyer traffic to our websites as well as an increase in requests for buyer information packets. Based on the results of our marketing, we anticipate the next two months being very active. We want to earn the right to be Your Real Estate Resource, so please let us know how we can help you.

Until next time!

~Greg Harrelson