Telluride has some seller's market indeed, but also some buyer's market segments too.  Call me for a full explanation on what's going on in Telluride's real estate market- great deals to be had.  Telluride, real estate, Dan Henschel.....

Homebuyers better act fast and don't dicker, expert warns

 

The summer has been a hot one for real estate, and the trend toward a strong seller's market was underscored Thursday as the National Association of Realtors released its latest existing-home sales figures.

Sales were down 0.9% in August, but not for lack of buyer enthusiasm. Instead, it's because inventory is drastically low. With fewer sellers out there, price pressure is on the rise. The median sales price was up 5.1% from last year. Steve Udelson, president of Owners.com, a top 10 national real estate brokerage, gives his take on the home front. 

Q: What kind of home inventory are we seeing going into fall? 

A: We anticipate that consumer demand for homes will remain strong and we will see continued limitations on both existing inventory, starter homes and new construction. Low inventory is a major driver of price inflation, so we can anticipate that median home sales prices will also continue to be on the higher end.

Q: What does that mean for buyers? 

A: Because of limited housing inventory and historically low interest rates, we can still expect to see hot competition among buyers. It’s very much still a seller’s market in many regions. That’s why it’s critical for buyers keep their budget in mind, but also to be careful that they don’t underbid, because they could easily lose out on a heavily sought-after home. Since there are fewer options to purchase a home right now, the caution for home buyers is that they may need to move fast to close the deal, but could end up paying more than they might have anticipated or wanted. That’s why it’s crucial for buyers to do their homework to fully understand the value of the home so they can feel confident about their purchase decision. 

Q: How should buyers approach negotiations during this time?

A: The more the potential buyer knows about why the seller is moving, the better. For example, if the seller has already purchased another home and they are paying two mortgages, they may be more inclined to negotiate costs to move the process along faster. Buyers also shouldn’t assume that the home inspection will allow them to reopen negotiations. Having a sense of what upgrades the home might need, like a new roof or water heater, can be great to help negotiate costs upfront instead of waiting until the inspection time.

Q: The Fed has pointed to “economic uncertainty surrounding the November elections” as one factor for a cooler market. What would you say to people putting off a home purchase (or sale) because of the election? 

A:  There is always uncertainty leading up to an election, and it can cause both buyers and sellers to hold off on making any real estate decisions at all.  But usually, election-related uncertainty is not the sole reason someone would delay buying or selling a home.  Homebuyers shouldn’t lose sight that it’s a very good time to capitalize on low interest rates. For sellers, prices are nearing their pre-housing meltdown highs again. There may be some short-term economic shifts because of the election, but if you’re in the market to buy or sell right now, it’s not a reason to wait. If you need a mortgage, take action now.

Q: What’s one tip you wish buyers would take to heart? 

A: The best tip I can give to buyers is that with home prices at their current elevated levels, focus on finding smart ways to save. Savvy buyers will take advantage of tech-enabled brokerage services that offer reduced commissions or buyer’s rebates. Looking at "for sale by owner" properties or considering buying a home at auction are strategic options. Taking advantage of low interest rates so you can lock in a manageable mortgage is an obvious tip. Buyers should shop around carefully and get as informed as they possibly can about the areas where they’re looking to buy, because understanding local market dynamics can help while negotiating.