There are 2 answers; one for buyers and one for sellers.Buyers:
- As an agent dealing with many buyers recently, I share this thought early in my conversations: "You make your money on real estate when you buy, not when you sell. If you buy right, you will always be able to sell it right with a profit."
- In order to buy low and sell high, you must find an agent who is an expert on local real estate information. I also tell my clients: "My job (as an agent) is not to sell you anything. My job is to educate and inform you. The only way you feel good at closing, is knowing that you made an informed decision."
- Use technology to it's fullest to become knowledgeable about real estate, but do not rely only on technology. Good agents live real estate 7 days a week. Laws, regulations and paperwork for real estate change constantly.
- Interest rates are low. Do you think by waiting a year the prices may go down another 5-10%? They may, but if the interest rates go up just 1% in the next year (quite possible), you are better off to buy now. Run the numbers and you can see for yourself.
- About 1/3 of all sales are short sales or foreclosures. This is likely to continue for another 2 to 4 years. Values are not likely to go up for a couple of years, but we are pretty much "bouncing" on the bottom.
- If values stay the same for the next year or two before before your property appreciates, should you wait to sell? NO. If your current investment (your real estate) is only likely to increase 2-6% over the next 5 years, can you put that money into a better investment (distressed real estate or others) that can earn you more? YES.
Real estate is the largest investment most people make in their lives. Get educated, get informed.