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Monday, March 18, 2013

Trying to keep up with the market

I'm sure that every market is different across the country, but we may all be trying to do the same things as Realtors - keep up with a changing market. We had the same issue on the slide down in market values during the recession. Now the challenge is to keep abreast of the rapid recovery in some markets.

Lately I've had to watch that I was not too conservative on pricing - still stuck in yesterday's pricing structure. The issue that is still unresolved is not so much whether prices are recovering - they are; it's really about how fast we and the rest of the real estate related industries change with it - the appraisers and loan officers and lenders and the like. I still have to caution sellers that the house must appraise for the new, higher value; before the sale price that they are so happy with can go through to a closing.

Fortunately the ancillary industries are trying to catch up and even lenders are loosening up some. There are also helpful programs at the Federal and State levels that are once again encouraging and assisting home ownership. Of course the very low inventory helps, although it's giving appraisers fits as they search for comps to use to justify the new, higher sale prices.

Even the assessors are scrambling to get on board the recovery with higher assessments and higher taxes. If there is a group that overshot badly in the down direction it is the assessors. Most homeowners thought that was great - lower assessed value and lower taxes; however, now that a number are trying to sell, they're trying to justify the much higher prices that they are asking for the place.

Of course, everybody will catch up and everything will settle into a new normal; likely that will happen this summer some time when inventory catches back up with demand. Until then it will be a scramble on the part of everyone to keep up with the changes that are happening. Welcome to the wonderful world of real estate.

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