Knowledge is powerful. As we navigate through these times, the real estate industry continues to thrive. Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, the real estate industry was on solid ground and on the verge of a record year. Our region, as well as the nation, experienced an inventory shortage of homes for sale for nearly three years. During the lockdown, many sellers left the market and have not returned. Now that restrictions have loosened and proper safety precautions are in place, our members are experiencing a BIG bounce back in the housing market. If there has been ever a time to consider selling your home, now is that time!
Over the last eight years in the Battle Creek area housing market, the average home price has increased from $79,990 in 2011 to $144,999 in 2019. During that same time frame, the number of closed transactions increased from 1,300 in 2011 to over 1,750 in 2019. Due to the Governors Executive Order in April and May, our region experienced a record low level of Pending Sales. The housing market slowdown was the result of Government orders to address the COVID-19 pandemic. Since easing restrictions, market numbers have increased in June. Pending June 2020 home sales have increase 18% over June of 2019. These are promising numbers and a good sign that the real estate market will experience even greater gains over the summer.
According to the profile of Home Buyers and Sellers (2019), published by the National Association of REALTORS®, a Seller who tries to sell their home For Sale by Owner (FSBO), typically sell their home for less than the selling price of other homes. FSBO homes sold at a median of $200,000 and is significantly lower than the median of “agent-assisted homes” at $280,000 in 2019. That is a difference of $80,000. Home sellers received a median of 99% of their asking price this year and sold their homes typically within three weeks.
We are very optimistic that these upward trends will continue, especially with the guidance of the Michigan REALTORS® and local health officials working to insure the health and safety of our Buyers and Sellers. Mortgage rates are at an all-time low. In fact, the 30-year mortgage rate is at the lowest point it’s been in over 50 years as reported by Freddie Mac. Buyer activity is at an all-time high. Many times, homes listed with a REALTOR®, are receiving higher than their listing prices. If you’ve been thinking about selling, now is the time to put your home on the market.
Please contact your favorite REALTOR® to discuss your real estate needs. Remember, every REALTOR® must adhere to a strict Code of Ethics, which sets a higher standard of professionalism with clients/customers, the public and other REALTORS®. When you work with a REALTOR®, you can expect honest and ethical treatment in all transaction-related matters. For more information about homebuying or finding a REALTOR®, visit bcaar.com or call 269.962.5193.
By Mark Miller, Associate Broker/Manager at Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Michigan