Here is my prognostication for the coming year's market activity.
1-The tax credit is driving the entry level buyers to get into a house now, with a lot of competition at the bottom price ranges for 3 bedroom 2 bath homes. This will continue through the June closing dates set by congress for expiration of the credits.
2-The interest rates will rise by the spring as a result of the bond market's difficulty finding buyers for long term treasuries to about 7% for a fixed rate loan, whether it be FHA or a Fannie/Freddie product. This will put a have a dampening effect on things until prices adjust accordingly to the new market levels.
3-The 3 and 5 year ARM resets will start kicking in in 2010, and with the rate increases will reset higher than expected, resulting in a third wave of foreclosure activity, with the HAMP program from the feds not having the desired effect of keeping the majority of borrowers who are in trouble in their homes. The inventory will climb from the current levels and the resulting price adjustments will take several years to wash out the overage back to a balanced market.
4-Buyers will continue to look for bargain sales prices and Sellers will need a lot of assistance and advice on the proper choices that will help them navigate difficult financial waters. Professionals will be worth their weight in gold when it comes to buying and selling properties that in prior years would have turned over multiple times in just a few years.
5-Creative prospecting and marketing will reward the diligent Brokers and Agents who will have an opportunity not seen in decades to acquire market share in their areas. Buyers and Sellers have migrated to the internet, yet the face to face ability to listen to what the customer wants and needs will be king in this market.
Now is the time to move to where the market is, rather than where it has been, things are changing on almost a weekly basis, so stay sharp, be aware of your competition and most importantly be aware of what the public is looking for in a professional Real Estate practitioner. The opportunity to prosper is directly tied to the level of creativity and service that we bring to the table!
Michael Curtis,CRS- Principal Broker Exit Realty Professionals, Portland, Oregon
www.BoldExit.com www.ExitRltyPros.com Mike@ExitRltyPros.com