How’s the Market? It’s Making Lemonade

Austin real estate market l Austin Texas Housing Market l How's the market? l builder incentives How’s the market? Making today’s real estate market work means making lemonade. The real estate market as a whole is slow. It’s slow because people have more homes to see than they have had in years. It’s slow because mortgage interest rates are high enough to question whether any house is worth it. It’s slow because housing prices haven’t really come down enough to aid in the affordability factor. Interest rates and housing prices equal fewer ready, willing, and able buyers. While it may be slow, it is not dead. More and more sellers are meeting the market where it is. 

Sellers may need to work around the lemons: home seller advice

Affordability and interest rates aren’t just lemons for buyers, but they impede sales too because they limit the demand.  Markets are local and sometimes hyperlocal.  If home sellers are hearing crickets in their city, zip code, or neighborhood, it doesn’t matter how hot the real estate market is 1500 miles away or even 15 miles away. 

Home seller advice for those prepping to list need to take stock of the current state of their property in comparison to others and plan. That may mean pivoting based on local market price data, the condition of the home, location, or all three. Remember money makes things go away and that can include buyers. If the house isn’t priced to sell today, the price may be the lemon. Buyers will just move on to the next house.

How’s the market?  It may be slow but people are still buying homes

In any given month about a quarter of homes sold are cash transactions.  According to the NAR Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, 78% of recent buyers financed their home purchase, so the current rates aren’t stopping everyone.  What’s more, the Central Texas International Home Buyers Report shows The Austin Round Rock Georgetown MSA ranks #1 among the 50 largest US metros for net population growth with a 4.6% net increase in new residents. 

Austin Texas home sales l seller advice l home buying tips l builder incentives

Buyers need to make lemonade: home buying tips

The beauty of this market right now for buyers is that they have more inventory to explore than they have had in years.  They actually have choices within their financial constraints. Remember, those monetary limits are restricting buyer competition too. Multiple offers are still out there, but they are no longer the norm. Buyers are competing with their wallets right now more than other people.

The best home buying tip right now is don’t be afraid to ask. Don’t be afraid to make an offer. While it may be a futile exercise if the home just came on the market; it may ignite a conversation for a home that has been sitting.  Think of an offer as an invitation.  If the seller hasn’t had any offers, they may be motivated to have a conversation.  If the buyer and seller can come up with the right ingredients, both sides can get to yes.

New Home Builder incentives: Builders are premixing lemonade

While the wallet will always win, there are ways to stretch it. Many new home communities are offering builder incentives.   A brand new house with a 4 or 5% interest rate that may be an extra 20 minutes away might make more sense than a resale home in your ideal flight path with the same kitchen cabinets you grew up with. On the flip side, a point buy-down, or closing cost concessions might keep more money in a buyer’s pocket to ultimately replace those cabinets. No choice is perfect, but that doesn’t mean you will love your home any less.

Lemonade typically isn’t anyone’s first choice. It’s different, but it’s pretty good when you have it. There are a lot of reasons why this market doesn’t work for everyone. Buyers and sellers need to meet the market where it is. How’s the market? Right now it is making lemonade.

Are you looking for more data on the Austin real estate housing market? See Austin real estate news for October here. 

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