A review of August’s stats confirms the housing market is continuing to normalize. The months of inventory is up 0.73% year-over-year, and up 0.18% since July. Compared to July’s statistics, the average days on market have increased 1 day; and the sold-to-list price ratio has gone down 2%, dropping under 100% for the first time in over a year. Furthermore, the average year-over-year sales price is up by only 7.94%.
While these changes seem insignificant, here’s how they translate for buyers & sellers:
- The days of picking a selling price from thin air and having the home close for that price or higher are gone. Appraisals have caught up with the market, and sales prices are leveling off. Sellers are finding that they must choose a price that aligns with the market value of nearby, similar homes if they want their home to have good showing traffic and sell in a reasonable amount of time.
- Sellers are finding that buyers are expecting reasonable repairs to be completed, and buyers aren’t accepting the structural or cosmetic flaws they once did.
- There are fewer multiple offers on homes, and homes are taking days, rather than hours, to go under contract.
- Buyers are enjoying a reprieve in the mad rush to find a home. With a slightly larger inventory and the days on market stretched a bit, buyers have more opportunity to see and consider a home without it being snatched out from under them.
- Buyers need to realize that, although there is a shift in the market, inventory reflects that it is still a strong seller’s market and, if serious about purchasing, they should do all they can in preparation of making a strong offer. Preparation would include choosing a lender (preferably a local lender), getting pre-approved for a loan, and setting aside money for the earnest money deposit, due diligence fee, and applicable inspections.
Both buyers and sellers would benefit from hiring a local realtor to protect their interests and, ultimately, their biggest financial investment. Seller agents aid by recommending a market-based selling price, advising in prepping the home for market, advertising the home, and guiding their clients during all facets of the transaction. Buyer agents aid by helping their clients find and view homes that meet their criteria, scheduling any inspections their clients request, coordinating with the lender and attorney to keep everything on track, and guiding their clients in all aspects of the transaction.