Current housing market: Realtors find supply and demand challenging
WICOMICO CO., Md. – When the pandemic first started, many experts weren’t sure what to expect when it came to the housing market. Now, realtors on the Eastern Shore say the biggest obstacle for the housing market is supply and demand
“Those houses that came on the market went very quickly because we had these very well qualified buyers and everybody was at home,” says Kate Deckenback, the team leader at the Sell Delmarva Group of Keller Williams in Salisbury. “Already we didn’t have a whole lot on the market and then when everything shut down, everyone stayed in place and put the brakes on we really had a dive in the houses we had available to sell.”
While unemployment has skyrocketed, industry experts say mortgage rates have stayed at a good level. “Interest rates stayed very low even through all of this so buyers were looking to take advantage of those low interest rates and people had time at home to think and consider,” says Deckenback.
On the flip side, the competitive market has also had an impact on what home buyers are willing to pay. “Prices have definitely gone up a little bit and people are paying over the asking price sometimes,” says Jeff Ashley, the team leader for the Ashley Group at ERA Martin Associates.
As for the low inventory, people may still be hesitant to list their homes even though agents are practicing countless new safety protocols. “I think people might not want to put their homes on the market because they don’t want big groups of people coming through their home with the virus going on,” says Ashley.
But because there’s such a demand for homes, realtors say this is a great time if you’re looking to sell. “In this market, it’s still a seller’s market so when homes come on, you’re looking at multiple offer situations a lot of the time in desirable price ranges,” says Deckenback. “Certainly there’s definite concern with people who have been put out of work for the last several months and that’s definitely going to make an impact and take a toll but I don’t think it’s going to affect the housing market in nearly the same way that it did in 2008.”
If you’re looking to buy a home, realtors recommend getting pre-approved for a loan so that you can act quickly when you find what you’re looking for. If you’re looking to sell, they say your home likely wouldn’t be on the market for long. Agents say the summer months look promising so if you’re looking to buy or sell, now could be the time.