What is really going on with the real estate market in Chester County? The following table of Trend MLS statistics shows the real estate picture for the month of May in 2007, 2008 and 2009. By comparing the number of homes in Chester County that were “For Sale”, “Sold” and “Under Contract” (pending settlement) during the same time period during the past three years, it is clear that fewer homes are selling and the ones that don’t sell are staying on the market longer.
Is It Disaster or Opportunity?
To be honest, the answer to this question all depends on your specific situation. Besides being local, real estate is also individual. Last month there were 4,908 homes for sale throughout Chester County. Since only 525 homes went “under contract” in May, it would take over 9 months for all of the homes currently for sale to sell…and that’s if no other homes were listed!
Typically speaking, an inventory of homes for sale over 6 months is considered a “buyer’s market”. While inventories do vary depending on specific locations and price ranges it appears that buying opportunities are abundant in today’s market. From the buyer purchasing their first home and qualifying for the $8,000 tax credit, to the buyer moving up into a larger single family home… there may not be a better opportunity to make a move. The government cannot continue to keep printing money and keep interest rates at historic lows forever, can it? Just like the seller’s market that ended in 2006, this buyer’s market will eventually end because real estate is a continuous cycle. The question is…will you have missed your best opportunity before it does?
But I’m Selling…That Can’t Be Good, Can It?
Well, you may be in luck too…unless you bought in the last few years. Even in a robust market if you’re trying to sell a relatively unchanged house only a few years after purchasing it you may be lucky to break even.
Now, if you have treated your home like a long-term investment it may still be a good time to move. What? Yes, it may still be a good time to move if you have some equity in your home. If you are buying into a higher price range, moving to an area with a weaker market, or considering purchasing new construction today is ripe with opportunity. For example, if you had a $200,000 home to sell and were purchasing a $400,000 home and both homes lost 10% in value this year, you would still save $20,000 by purchasing the higher priced home. Generally speaking, the higher the price, the greater your savings. Here’s another example. Let’s say your parents have been in their house for 30 years and it’s paid off. They want to move to a better climate. Florida, Arizona, Las Vegas, etc…if they have equity in their home in Pennsylvania they can get a lot for their money in these hard hit areas. Sell here and go buy those bargains!!!
We’re Ready To Help When You Need Us…
Sometimes moves are planned, other times they’re not. When you or someone your know needs specific information about the local real estate market, please email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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