REALTORS® Help Buyers Find Homes in Low Inventory Markets
The start of the busy spring buying season means a growing number of Americans are on the hunt to purchase a home, but many could have trouble finding a home to buy. A new survey by the National Association of Realtors® reveals for the first time that difficulties finding the right property have surpassed challenges obtaining financing as the most cited reason clients are not purchasing homes. This finding speaks to the tightened inventory conditions seen in many areas of the country. There simply aren’t enough homes available to purchases.
“There’s more demand than inventory, which has pushed up home prices to levels above what many first-time buyers are comfortable spending,” said Seth Task ACAR President. “People spend valuable time going through the process of obtaining a pre-approval and locating their perfect home only to find themselves competing in a bidding war.”
Fortunately, the market is showing signs of improvement. Housing inventories increased in April, rising 16.8 percent to 2.29 million existing homes available. This represents a 5.9 month supply, up from a 5.2 month supply in March. NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun says a housing supply of over 6 months is needed for a generally balanced market between home buyers and sellers. He predicts that we will continue to see a balancing act between housing inventory and price growth, and that more inventory and increased new-home construction will help to foster healthy market conditions.
So the future is looking brighter, but what should potential buyers looking to enter the market now do to increase their chances of finding their dream home?
Akron Cleveland Association of REALTORS® suggests buyers carefully evaluate their finances and get prequalified or pre-approved for a mortgage. “You’ll be able to have a firm idea of what you can afford and feel comfortable finding the right financial fit,” said Task
Making a clean offer with as few contingencies as possible can also help buyers who find themselves competing with multiple bidders. “The best offer isn’t always the one with the highest price,” said Task. “It’s often times the one with the fewest hassles and restrictions with the quickest closing terms.” Eliminating or reducing the number of contract contingencies, through things like pre-offer inspections, can help make your offer stronger.
Most importantly, Akron Cleveland Association of REALTORS® recommends working with a Realtor®. “Prospective buyers should look for a RealtorÒ who is familiar with the areas and neighborhoods they are considering,” said Task. “A Realtor®’s unique knowledge and insight to local markets can’t be replicated by simply searching online. They can provide valuable advice, discuss listings, show you homes in person, navigate you through all the online information, negotiate on your behalf and help you stay focused on the emotional and financial issues that are most important.”
“Consumers who want the most accurate, up-to-date property listings in their area should also visit realtor.com® “, said Task. Together, Realtors® and realtor.com® can give buyers the advantage they need in today’s market and help make their dream home happen.
Remember, when you’re ready to buy or sell a home, contact a REALTOR®, a member of Akron Cleveland Association of REALTORS®