No one made me God of Trulia, and no one needs approval or disapproval but I give thumbs up to Dragos, below. First I will tell you that Ive been in business 33 years. Many people in this industry dont care for attitude, which 1000% pro consumer and in many ways anti 'salesperson'. I wouldnt list your home right now for a dollar because Im not a lister---I work with buyers. I tell you that so you know Im have NO BIAS in this.
I spend SEVEN DAYS A WEEK evaluating homes for banks and other servicers who own mortgages. The values are for when the bank is considering doing a loan modification (Pure scam and huge lie to the public) working with the seller for a short sale, doing a full foreclosure or finally if they already took the home back and are going to sell it. I have evaluated 3,500 homes in the main tri-county area. I know values and whats been happening. While generally correct in their descriptions of the market, the topic needs elaboration.
1.NOW NOW NOW NOW is the time to place your house on the market. June starts our one short summer buying season if tradition holds. When valuing homes I have to come up with 3 like the subject that are for sale and 3 that have sold within 6 months. For the last 4 -5 months Ive had to extend my search for SOLD properties back to 9 months to pick up sales from last summer season.
Interest rates are not going anywhere but possibly down. You all can mark this prediction and either applaud me or laugh at me later, lol.
So, market your house NOW, its the right time. On the other hand---you have to BUY a home? When is the best time for that? Here is the main heart of this whole blog. Where are prices going? As several touched on the market is hot. I say it SEEMS hot. I could spend an hour here detailing this out but I'll nutshell it, though the nut is a coconut.As the market hit the fan in 2008-then harder in 2009, prices started to fall. Doesnt matter for now why this happened its too long a story. They fell to their true value---all our old values were false from a false lending market. Something BIG started to happen. Because so many thousands of Oregonians were losing their homes, they all needed places to stay. Their credit was shot and they couldnt buy so they became RENTERS. This huge demand for rentals started us on the road to record breaking monthly rent as landlords hovered like vultures over a dying buffalo. So you have a graph going. One line is declining prices. One is increasing rent and the other is the cost of owning the house---mainly INTEREST RATES. See my drift? Low rates equal low cost. At a certain price with certain rates, if the normal market rent income is greater you have a POSITIVE cash flow and get great return on your clams. So the first segment of real estate to start back up was cheaper 2 and 3 bedroom houses that hit in that section of the graph where it made sense to buy and hold. Investors came out of the woodwork to snap these up. After a while, with rents going even higher, competition started an increase in values.Out of country buyers also helped with this trend. We lost much commercial ownership to foreign investors, then they started on houses. The media, ever 'spinning' to make the public think the traitor Obama was doing a great job, headlined "activity up!' 'Prices increasing!' etc. etc.
Lets say 2 years ago we sold 5,000 homes in one county. last year we sold 2500. We had a 50% drop! So at the end of this year we sell 2501 houses. An increase! Yay happy days, right? Qualified, its only a small reversal of the down trend. The media says things are peachy again. WELL THEY AIN'T PEACHY. In certain areas real estate is increasing. In some limited areas it never went down! The majority of areas achieving the greatest increases have to stall because Joe and Jane American only make so much and can only afford so much rent. People with money have been watching to see what the market would do/is doing. At certain times someone always has to buy or sell. When million dollar homes dropped to 400,000 in some cases, buyers felt that it was an incredible opportunity even if the house dropped another 50,000 after they bought, so expensive areas have seen some increases in values but its SPOTTY and our number of sales are still much lower than in the good old days. Real estate was pretty well expected to keep falling in most areas because of the mass of foreclosed properties and short sales continuing to errode pricing. Now something unexpected is happening! Huge money corporations are buying foreclosed homes and homes in trouble (Actually buying the mortgage debt. Bad loans like this are called 'scratch n dent' in the trade) and they are going to keep them as rentals!! Owning rentals for the high income will be a HUGE FIRST for companies like that instead of investing in stock etc. This is already slowing the foreclosure sales and short sales negotiations. Regular houses are going up in certain areas. (ran out of space)