Will Plano homes ever sell?

Asked by Jack Hannah, Fremont, CA Mon Jan 18, 2010

I'm not putting my home on the market since the current conditions are so bad. Yes, yes, I know - good home priced well, etc. But overall, it seems that Dallas and its counties have the lowest home prices and the highest foreclosures per capita. I think once the tax credit ends in April, things will get even worse. Any inputs? And I'd like inputs from non-realtors too if possible, since I'm looking for a realistic view of the market.

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Matt Anderson’s answer
Matt Anderson, , 75034
Wed Jan 27, 2010
At the end of March the fed will end the trillion dollar assistance to keep interest rates down. When that happens and the tax extension ends we will be hurting. I believe most people are not willing to move up or down. They just want to sit and stay until things get better.
2 votes
Don Tepper, Agent, Burke, VA
Mon Jan 18, 2010
First, a caveat: I don't know the Plano market. And a second caveat: I'm a Realtor, so you may consider my view less-than realistic. Still . . .

Yes, homes in most areas of the country (and I'd include Plano) will sell. The market will recover. There are a few areas--for example, certain areas around Detroit and elsewhere in Michigan, as well as some in other areas of the Midwest--where I'm not so sure the market will ever recover. Or at least not for 20-30 years. But those areas of really deep depression, coupled with a significant loss of jobs, are fairly rare.

There are plenty of other areas--parts of California, Nevada, and Florida--that are probably far worse off than Dallas. And California, Nevada, and Florida will all recover. I'm not saying this year, and I'm not saying next year. But they will.

The question is one of timing. I'll defer to any agents familiar with Dallas and the surrounding areas. But prices have already strengthened in some areas--Northern Virginia (where I am) being just one. I'd say 2-3 more years in areas that weren't terribly hard hit when the bubble burst. And I'd say 5-6 years in the harder-hit areas.

There is a school of thought suggesting that things will get worse once the tax credit ends. That could be correct. However, to the extent that prices may decline some, it'll make home prices even more affordable. The real driver, though, won't be the tax credit. And it won't be much else directly related to real estate. Instead, it'll be the whole employment situation in the United States. If unemployment drops from the current 10% down to 7% or so (which may take a few years), that'll help greatly. Plus, in addition to the unemployment numbers, there's also a question of consumer confidence. Even though most people have jobs, and most people won't lose them, right now there is substantial fear about the possibility of job loss or job cutbacks. People have to feel confident again before they'll be ready to go out and buy.

There are some other factors involved, too--such as the rate of inflation and the cost of money. Inflation is likely to rise, and the Fed at some point will feel the pressure to raise interest rates to try to slow down inflation. That'll depress the housing market.

There's also the fear that banks are holding back on releasing many foreclosures back onto the market and that--once they do--that'll depress housing values.

So, what's that all mean? Short-term, slow improvement, especially in areas that weren't too hard hit when the bubble burst. Medium-term, continued improvement so long as the unemployment rate continues to fall. But there will be a number of forces--inflation, higher interest rates, release of foreclosed homes--that will slow down a housing recovery.

I know that's not the definitive prediction you may be seeking, but I think it's a realistic view . . . even if it is from a Realtor!

Hope that helps.
2 votes
Ronda Allen, Agent, Plano, TX
Sat Jan 23, 2010
Sorry you are buying into the media hype about the market. When I get called to list a home in Plano, I hang up the phone and say 'WOO HOO! PLANO!!' The only problem I have with Plano listings is that I typically sell them before I can get much advertising time for my for sale signs. I don't hate to be the bearer of great news that you are the one with the unrealistic view of the Plano market. Either that, or you own an absolute 'piece' of a home in regard to condition and don't want to spend any money to get it ready to sell. You can keep trying to say it's bad here, but we know otherwise. Your house is in our office - Plano, Texas - and we can sell Plano all day, every day and twice on Sunday. If you doubt us, give any of us your listing and let us spend our time and our money proving you wrong.


Ronda Allen, Realtor and Certified Purchasing Manager
CEO of comingsoonhomes.com
RE/MAX Dallas Suburbs
1 vote
Bruce Lynn, Agent, Coppell, TX
Tue Jan 19, 2010

In my opinion Plano homes are selling....but you are right...they have to be in good condition and priced right.
I believe you are also right that things can change after April. If the tax credit gets wiped out and if Freddie and Fannie stop buying mortgages, interest rates will increase significantly. We also haven't seen inflation yet, but with all the $ the Fed pumped into the system, inflation will like increase at some point. The good news is that we don't see a lot of foreclosures in Plano. Average prices have fallen in Plano about 5% in the past 12 months. Even within Plano though some neighborhoods remain pretty hot, while others are not.
Probably the biggest problem for you or for us is that we just can't predict very well the future. Who knows where unemployment will be at the end of the year. Who really knows if Freddie and Fannie stop buying mortgages. Who knows what interest rates private investors will demand if they do. Who knows what kind of crazy schemes anyone in our government will come up with? Who knows what inflation will do? Who knows if there will be another 9/11?.....any one of these factors and many others could put a stop to home purchases or some other factor could influence people to buy.
If you want to sell, hanging on for prices to improve I don't think is always the best strategy. How do you know if they will ever improve? How do you know they will not get worse? We also have pretty high carrying costs in Texas with high insurance and tax rates. If you really want to sell there is typically never a better time than now.
If you would like to keep track of prices in your neighborhood, follow our Market Snapshot link below. It's a neat FREE tool available to you.

Bruce Lynn
Keller Williams Realty
Web Reference:  http://www.dfwSnapshot.com
1 vote
Mary Beth Ha…, Agent, Dallas, TX
Mon Jan 18, 2010
I get your frustration with trying to sell a house from such a great distance. You do not mention the price of your home or the location within Plano so I cannot be specific but in the last 6 months in all of Plano (which is a large area as you know) there have been 852 sales between $100,000-250,000, 287 sales between $250,000-350,000, 126 sales between $350,000- 450,000 and 43 sales between $450,000-550,000.

You can see the pattern here, the higher the price the sales decrease. If you have a home that requires a jumbo loan (any loan amount over $417,000) the market has definitely been hard hit. On the flip side, if you have a home that falls within the $8000 home buyer credit range (somewhere under $417,000 due to income restrictions) you have a large buyer pool right now.

It would be a shame to miss this opportunity of low interest rates, low housing prices, and ample buyer pool. if there was ever a time to try to get your home sold it is now.

Let me know if I can provide any further assistance.

Mary Beth Harrison
The Harrison Group
Keller Williams Realty
1-866-433-5678 toll free
Web Reference:  http://www.DallasNative.com
1 vote
Shirley Shep…, Agent, Dallas, TX
Wed Sep 8, 2010
If you are aware of the Dallas, Plano market then you know that our prices are realist and sell--home prices in this area are good because of location and Plano schools-- if the house shows well -- it sells--if it needs work and updates it stays on the market for awhile-- it depends on how agressive the agent is that lists your home in marketing your property.
0 votes
V Littles, , Collin County, TX
Wed Jan 27, 2010
Hi Jack - I live here. Houses are selling. However, if you are used to the California market, the price may not be what you assumed. In Texas, we do not have the huge swings in price as occur in California. In fact, if you hold on to the property, yes the value will appreciate, but nothing like CA or FL. I have posted a link to the latest market report for Plano from the local MLS data.

Contact me anytime if you would like to discuss your options.

Valarie DeLaCruz Littles
Realtor, SFR, eCertified 2.0 ®

Email: littles.homes@gmail.com
Web Site: http://www.dlproperties.net
Blog: http://activerain.com/blogs/vlittles

Phone: (214) 810-5135
Fax: (877) 388-1260
0 votes
Dp2, , Virginia
Sat Jan 23, 2010
As an investor who invests both in North TX (including Plano), Northern VA, and some other areas, I can tell you based on my own experience (and research) that the Dallas market is a great place to buy/sell properties--of course when priced correctly. I know more lenders who will lend on deals in TX than I know that will lend anywhere else.

Deals are moving so fast in TX, that some of my friends (also investors) have temporarily moved there (especially in DFW, McAllen, Houston, and Austin). Even some of the properties in some of the surrounding counties (Collin, Jefferson, etc) are moving relatively quickly.
0 votes
Paddy C, , Dallas, TX
Thu Jan 21, 2010
Remember it is your home! You can ask what you want for it. If your Realtor is good she will sell it... People are buying homes. A good Realtor will explain to potential buyers why your home is priced higher than others in the area! If your home is a great home than it should be an easy sell. Ask what you want for your home. If nobody offers to buy it for that amount than you don't have to sell it. It is true that if your home is way over priced than it most likely wont sell, no matter how great of a sales person your Realtor is. You never know though you may get lucky! Have a fabulous day Jack.
Paddy Coppin, Elle Realty
Dallas Texas
Web Reference:  http://www.ellerealty.com
0 votes
Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Mon Jan 18, 2010
I am unconfirmed where you are obtaining your data of Plano homes not selling

In past 6 monts 1,466 homes have sold in Plano

DOES not include
a) New construction not posted in MLS

Home sales were up to $3.5 million over 250 homes sold from $305K and up

244 Plano homes sold per month
8 closing per day

Currently there are 230 homes waiting close on the market

Hope that assists you

National Featured Realtor and Consultant, Texas Mortgage Loan Officer, Credit Repair Lecturer
Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/Lynn911

0 votes
Kerry Thornh…, Agent, Dallas, TX
Mon Jan 18, 2010
It's not that bad. It's a marketing problem, you see? Every house and situation is different, and some are more different than others. The key is this market is to look at your competition. If a buyer wants to be in your neighborhood, what are they looking at? We have to position your home to be the next one to go in the neighborhood. That's accomplished by marketing the property positionally to the other active properties that are its competition, and by creating a "sense of urgency" in the pricing approach. I'd be happy to explain to you how I do that.

All the Best!!!

Kerry Thornhill
Virginia Cook Realtors
0 votes
Andrea Brooks, Agent, Plano, TX
Mon Jan 18, 2010

I'm not sure I'd agree with your foreclosure rate per capita statement, particularly as it relates to the Plano market. Plano homes are selling. In fact sales in Dec. 09 were up 11.1% over the same time last year AND median sales prices were up 4.5% per CCAR stats. Now it's hard to say whether the tax credit is driving this increase in the market. My thought is that buyers are feeling more confident about getting back into the market now that the mortgage industry has stabilized. That, combined with low interest rates and and a rebound in the stock market, seem to be what's driving things rather than just the tax credit.

Frankly the best way to get a feel for what your property would sell for and how long it would take would be to have a comparative market analysis done. We go back to anywhere from 4 to 6 months of sales history in your specific subdivision/neighborhood and evaluate the data, then compare your homes features and conditions against those properties that have already sold and those that are active. It's not magic - it's a combination of data analysis and professional knowledge of the market.

I concur with Roxanne and can also say 2009 was one of my best years yet so things are not as gloomy as you might think!

If you'd like more information I'd be happy to visit with you further. You can contact me at 469-450-1326.

Best regards,
Andrea Brooks
The Brooks Team, Keller Williams
Web Reference:  http://BrooksTeam.com
0 votes
Roxanne DeBe…, Agent, Plano, TX
Mon Jan 18, 2010
Hello Jack Hannah,
Great Question! In the north Texas market this past year, my team and I had our best year in number of transactions. I helped 67 buyers find homes and 106 sellers get their homes sold. I will say that my average sales price was not as high this past year as the year before, but it was down only about 5%. I have been a Plano realtor for the past 35 years. I have seen the market much worse in the 80's. The good thing to understand is that interests rates are very key right now, as well as the tax credits being given by the government. These two items are key motivators to buyers. Homes values have not risen that much in the north Dallas area so they haven't fallen that far as well. Our inventory of homes is still very good and since builders have cut their spec building many people are looking at resale homes. I would tell people to put their home on the market now because of these reasons. You are correct about the government going to stop buying mortgage back securities or at least we think that is going to happen around March or April. This could effect interest rates, however I do not believe it will effect them significantly. If interests rates go up 1 point it will be extremely favorable even during this time. However, now is the time for buyers to look at homes to get the most value based on current conditions.

If I were selling my home, I would want it on the market now and not later. In the 80's Texas was the no#1 foreclosure state and interest rates were 19%. We are 29th in foreclosures filings and the interest rates are below 6%. Based on these numbers alone, I think it is a good time to buy and sell.

I hope my answer helps and if you would like more information, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Roxanne DeBerry
Email: roxanne@thedeberryteam.com
0 votes
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