According to April 2021 data from the Coastal Carolina Association of Realtors:
- Prices on all properties are up 10.4%
- The number of properties for sale is down 29%
- Average days on market has gone down every month since August 2020
- What does that mean? Prices are up, inventory is down and things have sped up.
The most important thing you can do is to have a trusted Realtor. Can you buy a property without one? Yes. Does it cost you any money to work with a buyer's agent? No. Commissions are negotiated with a listing agent before the property ever hits the market. Don't just work with any Realtor. Work with one that you trust and that truly has your best interest at heart.
After identifying a trusted Realtor, identify your deal breakers. Then, talk those deal breakers through with your agent. I tell people all the time that just like sports, you scrimmage against your own team before you ever go out on the field with someone else.
Talk through the following options:
- Waiting- its ok to wait. No one knows when the market will shift but from here, it has to slow down eventually. (But that's what I said last year and I was wrong) I wish I would have pushed people harder to buy last fall before prices increased even more.
- Buying new construction. New construction allows you to choose your finishes and you aren't in a bidding war. There's lots of advantages to new construction in our current market!
- Removing contingencies. This one is scary and only do it if you're willing to take the risks. Buyers can choose to waive inspections and agree to pay in cash the difference between appraisal and purchase price. Be careful and talk this through with your trusted Realtor.
- Change your search. In years past, someone with a budget of $250,000 would search for homes $275,000 and less and hope to negotiate the seller down. In our current environment, I encourage you to do the opposite. If your budget is $250,000, search in the $225,000 range and plan to go over asking price.
- Be willing to work for it. Take a closer look at homes that are not move-in ready. If a home needs renovations, this home could be an opportunity for you to buy what other people can't tackle.
Plenty of folks need a turn-key property because they lack the resources or physical ability to update a home. If you can, use that to your advantage.