Tis the Season - to rent or to purchase?

Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker Elite

2007 is here and we are off to races!  Clients appear to be popping up everywhere.  Buyers, Sellers, Renters.  I have personally seen a strong push in the rental market as of late, with buyers and sellers coming in a close but strong second. 

I talk to a lot of people including other agents, lenders, read articles, talk to my broker and even title companies to keep up to date on how the market is coming along.  Here in the Northern VA area, the word on the street is that the market is rising this year at a 4% level this year.  Meaning that home prices will rise slightly as the year moves along.  Not exactly a hot market (not to mention that we are covered in snow today), but progress is being made and people are out and about looking for their dream homes.

My take on this, is people knew last year was an adjustment year for the housing market and held off waiting for things to bottom out.  I have seen new construction homes in the 400's now being sold in the mid 300's.  I have recently started getting signals from the media and word of mouth that things are beginning to rise but that it is still a buyer's market.  So, why wouldn't people buy?  Rates are good and seem steady, and the inventory is still plentiful with one major change.  The price of homes are cheaper than they were in 2005.  A big plus for buyers that have been in the area renting and watching.  I have successful chatted with folks over the past month and educated them on the market and the home owning benefits and 2 out of 3 have decided to purchase. 

 Did I change their mind?  I don't think so directly.  What I did was LISTEN first.  Showed them the rentals that met thier criteria and then during our conversations educated them on the area and available homes that they could own for a bit more plus get the tax advantages of owning their own home, not to mention the pride of ownwership most of us enjoy.  There are some awesome rentals right now out there, so not all clients can be sold on the idea of buying. 

My thought for this blog is, people may come to you thinking rent, rent, rent because the inventory is so good and a lot of folks are doing the double rent or buy ad.  But take the time to LISTEN, provide a service and then educate them if the opportunity arises.   You may surprise yourself and possibly make a long term client by assisting them in purchasing a home while the inventory is good and the prices are great!


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