Prereq: loan pre-approval 305, buyer consultation 206, cost estimate review 108, time frame 201
Okay, this isn’t a real college level class but it is at the level a home buyer needs to be if they want to take advantage of today’s real estate market. There is an “on-sale” mentality that has taken hold in our area, and home buyers who have been on the sideline are eager to buy low and finance even lower. And for those who qualify as first-time buyers, the $8,000 tax credit is stoking their burning desire to be homeowners.
The market statistics aren’t out for March ’09 yet and not every market or agent’s results are the same, but here are some observations on my March business:
- A listing had an offer close to list price in 48 hours.
- A buyer client competed with 2 other offers on a foreclosure (we won).
- Another listing had an offer within 96% of asking within a week.
- When showing homes to relocating clients, we had agents following us with clients at almost every home we saw in Oakton and Vienna.
And an associate in my office had six transactions come together in March which is exceptional.
I recognize that trends in our marketplace run with the season and spring has sprung. There is still a healthy inventory of available homes to choose from that did not exist in the 2005 era, but more than ever you need to be prepared because there are unique factors that exist here. The primary unique factor is jobs.
The monthly job-loss numbers popped up this morning with grim national news, 663,000 jobs lost and an unemployment rate at 8.5%. The Virginia Employment Commission reported in March that Fairfax County unemployment was at 4.7%, not to mention that the average income ranks high in national statistics. So we have 95.3% of the population working with well paying jobs.
Welcome to the big leagues home buyers! When you get e-mails on those “hot, new listings”, we are going into a potential fire-fight so let’s be prepared to take action.