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Soren Pfeffer's Blog

By Soren Pfeffer | Agent in 05602

Looks like a very active Market coming up this Spring & Summer

This late winter and spring has turned out to be an incredibly active real estate market and it doesn't seem to be winding down any time soon.  This was the busiest winter I've had in many years, with the "normal" slow down all but non-existant and many buyers seeming to be willing to continuing their search for that perfect place even in the dead of winter.  And with inventory already fairly minimal, this spring has brought back memories of the markets before the economic recession hit the country hard over 4 years ago now.  If recent trends are any indication, the market is poised to come roaring back and with it you can expect a shift from the "buyer's market" we've enjoyed over the past couple of years to one where inventory is low and competition for those few desiralbe properties may become fierce.

Over the past few years, sellers rarely were in the situation of receiving multiple offers and buyers tended to take their time, looking at quite a few properties, weighing the pros and cons of each, doing quite a bit of research, and only then deciding to make an offer.  And although sellers were not always willing to sell at bargain prices, most sellers were aware that turning down a decent offer might mean a long wait for the next one.  In the past couple of months, about 30% of the properties I've helped buyers with have been  multiple offer situations.  And some of the others have only been actively on the market for a week or 2.  I presently have more properties under contract for my buyer and seller clients than I have ever had, even in the height of the summer selling season.  And there doesn't seem to be any sign that things are slowing down anytime soon.

This market trend has lead to a much lower invemtory of properties for sale, especially in an around Montpelier.  Presently, there are only a few properties within an easy walk to downtown  available and there are many more buyers looking for such properties (though these buyeres are not all necessarily in a rush to buy something).  If this trend continues, competition for the most desirable properties will surely build and at some point, this will undoubtedly lead to price inflation.  Prices in Central Vermont over the past several years since the economic downturn have not gone "bust" as in many other areas of the country which were overbuilt and where speculation was rampant.  But over the past few years, prices have at best been stagnant and for many (especially higher priced homes) have declined.  And with the average historic increase in housing prices of about 5% per year (but much higher between 2000 and 2007), we would expect that the housing market needs to "catch up", with a potential rapid 20-25% increase in prices just to get us back to the normal trend line.  And that's what many national housing pundants are predicting might be underway right now. 

Of course noboby can predict what will happen in the next 3-6 months but if recent trends continue this might be the best time to buy that house or land you've been thinking about for the past few years - waiting to see if the market had hit bottom before jumping into the pool.  Now might be the right time to jump, at least as i see it.
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