Home Buyer Predictions 2018

Home Buyer Predictions 2018

Home Buyer Predictions 2018 brought to you by Sally English, Associate Broker, Realty Associates of Atlanta. Sally English and the English Team specialize in homes and neighborhoods convenient to Emory University and The CDC.

Home Buyers continue to face a challenge when purchasing a home. I am not an economist so I can’t predict what the U.S. economy is going to do – but I will take a swing at what I think the local housing market is going to look like.  Please keep in mind a national recession (bubble burst!) will negate most of my predictions.

But first let’s grade my 2017 predictions.

SALLY ENGLISH Home Buyer Predictions 2017:

  • There will be an increase in the price of existing homes in the first half of 2017. Low market inventory in combination with increased buyer demand will result in inflation of home prices. Home prices are going up! NAILED IT – home prices did go up.  In the Emory and CDC neighborhoods of Northeast Atlanta we saw strong increase in home values.
  • Home buyers can expect mortgage rates to continue to rise in the first half of 2017. Affordability is going down!  CORRECT  Rates did go up but maybe not as much as I expected.
  • Housing inventory is low as of December of 2017 and pent up demand for housing will result in listings going under contract almost as soon as they hit the market in the first quarter of 2017. Housing inventory will stay low for the first quarter of 2017. NAILED IT.  Houses sold as soon as they hit the market if they were priced correctly and had some updates.
  • Home buyers will have more inventory to choose from in April through June as home sellers who have been sitting on the sideline will enter the market to take advantage of increased home values. MISSED IT. Home sellers never came out of the wood work because they were afraid they would not find a suitable home to buy.  Inventory stayed low all year.
  • The housing market in the second half of 2017 is largely dependent on the economic policies of the Trump administration. If mortgage interest rates continue to rise that could dampen the housing market in the second half of 2017. The Federal Reserve Bank will continue to walk a tightrope as they try to control an overheating National economy.  MOSTLY MISSED IT The second half of the year had a strong housing market – not sure it was logical as Trump administration policies did not give much support to the housing market.
  • Home buyers must have a renovated home (for housing originally built in the 1960s-1980s) will have to pay top dollar for their homes. New kitchens and new baths equals paying a premium price. Home buyers may need to expand their search to include some houses that need renovation work, NAILED IT. Still true for 2018.
  • Millenials watching HGTV will be disappointed to learn their real estate agent can not select three great homes and then they pick one as the home they will buy.  Many of the homes available for first time home buyers will not have granite countertops, stainless steel appliances and soft close cabinet drawers. NAILED IT.  First time buyers had to compete with cash paying investors for affordable homes.  They had to take what they could get and it did not include upgrades.
  • It is going to be tough to find a good remodeling contractor in 2017. Heck it may be tough to find a handyman in 2017. Everybody will want to do some home improvement in 2017 as they have a few extra dollars in their pocket from an improving economy. Home buyers may have to take a price concession for their inspection punchlist items rather than demanding repairs from a home seller. TOSS UP. The best contractors are busy but there was a deeper sub contractor bench than I predicted.  You can get a home remodeled in a reasonable amount of time.
  • If President Trump successfully reduces the capital gains tax then all H*LL will break loose on the investment side of real estate. Any home under $250,000 in my market will be subject to purchase by an investor. Home buyers in the under $300,000 price range will have a lot of competition from investors paying cash for homes. Hint: Home sellers prefer cash buyers. NAILED IT.
  • Home buyers should team up with savvy real estate agents using predictive analysis to identify home sellers. Many of the best homes will never be listed in the MLS before they are bought and sold. You have to work with local agents who know your real estate market for this to strategy to work to your advantage. STILL TRUE

SALLY ENGLISH Home Buyer Predictions 2018:

  • Housing inventory remains low and 2018 will be a seller’s market.  Home buyers will have be first to attractive new listings and offer at or over list price to snag the best homes.
  • The new tax plan will not have a significant effect on the housing market in Atlanta Georgia.  The interest deduction cap does not impact a significant percentage of the market.
  • If you are a serious buyer ready to make a purchase you will be beat out to the best properties if you are not using a direct MLS feed from a Realtor.  The delay of publishing listings on Zillow and Trulia will be just enough to cause you to miss a chance to purchase the most attractive features. Note – the MLS alert must be properly set by your real estate agent.
  • Advice from your momma and daddy about how to purchase a home will cause you heartache in the 2018 housing market.  It’s a whole new game and what was true 10 years ago ain’t worth diddly (except for that location-location-location rule)
  • Sellers are going to want to see serious evidence you are a legit buyer before they let you tie a home up in a contract.  It may take more than a “prequalification” letter from your lender to nail down that dream home.  You may actually have to go through some underwriting steps in the mortgage process and get “Pre-Approved”.
  • Finding a Realtor to show you a house is going to be more difficult.  Realtors are not real interested in getting a call about “can you show a home in 30 minutes”.  You are going to need to establish a relationship with a Realtor and schedule time for showings.  Why?  When that dream home hits the market you will want a motivated Realtor who does not mind showing it at 9:00 am on short notice.
  • Homebuyers who want to find a perfect house are never going to make it through the inspection contingency phase of a home purchase.  When you ask a home seller to change light bulbs that are burned out they are going to tell you to go pound sand.
  • All the good home buyer technology is mobile.  Your smart phone is the number one tech tool for homebuyers. There are so many good real estate apps!
  • Homebuying in 2018 is going to be a lot more frustrating than in previous years.

You can call or text Sally English at 404-229-2995.