Why This Summer Is the 2020 Real Estate Season

home buyers, home sellers, summer real estate, annie hyatt real estate, windermere, redmond wa real estate

With stay-at-home orders starting to gradually lift throughout parts of the country, data indicates homebuyers are jumping back into the market. After many families put their plans on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic, what we once called the busy spring real estate season is shifting into the summer. In 2020, summer is the new spring for real estate.

Joel Kan, Economist at The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) notes:

“Applications for home purchases continue to recover from April’s sizable drop and have now increased for five consecutive weeks…Government purchase applications, which include FHA, VA, and USDA loans, are now 5 percent higher than a year ago, which is an encouraging turnaround after the weakness seen over the past two months.”

Additionally, according to Google Trends, which scores search terms online, searches for real estate increased from 68 points the week of March 15th to 92 points last week. As we can see, more potential homebuyers are looking for homes virtually.

What’s the Opportunity for Buyers?

Another reason buyers are coming back to the market, even with forced unemployment and stay-at-home orders, is historically low mortgage rates. Sam Khater, Chief Economist at Freddie Mac indicates:

“For the fourth consecutive week, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage has been below 3.30 percent, giving potential buyers a good reason to continue shopping even amid the pandemic…As states reopen, we’re seeing purchase demand improve remarkably fast, now essentially flat relative to a year ago.”

With mortgage rates at such low levels and states gradually beginning to reopen, there’s more incentive than ever to buy a home this summer.

What’s the Opportunity for Sellers?

Finding a home to buy, however, is still a challenge, as this spring sellers removed many listings from the market. Though more people are now putting their houses up for sale this month as compared to last month, current inventory is still well below last year’s level.

According to last week’s Weekly Economic and Housing Market Update from realtor.com:

“Weekly Housing Inventory showed continued tightening. New Listings declined 28% compared with a year ago, as sellers grappled with uncertainty and hesitated bringing homes to market. Total Listings dropped 20% YoY, a faster rate than in prior weeks, leaving very few homes available for sale. As Time on Market was 15 days slower YoY, asking prices moved up 1.5% YoY.”

If you’re thinking of selling your house this summer, now may be your best opportunity. With so few homes on the market for buyers to purchase, this season may be the time for your house to stand out from the crowd. Trusted real estate professionals can help you list safely and effectively, keeping your family’s needs top of mind. Buyers are looking, and your house may be at the top of their list.

Bottom Line

If you’re thinking of selling, many buyers may be eager to find a home just like yours. Let’s connect today to make sure you can get your house in on the action this summer.

Posted on May 27, 2020 at 2:56 pm
Annie Hyatt | Category: Buyers in Seattle, Buying a house, Buying Houses, Seattle, Seattle Area Homes, Seattle Eastside, Selling Houses, Selling in Seattle | Tagged , , , ,

See Past the Wallpaper

“If they don’t like my style, then they don’t have to buy the house!” my 85-year old mother says to me when we talk about what she needs to do to get her house market ready.  Truthfully, this a fake scenario since I would never let my parents sell my childhood home; they know I would buy it from them first.  But every time I go visit, my mom asks me what I would do if she did sell it, and every time she belligerently quotes the above.

My mom has style and a great sense of interior design, but it isn’t what would sell a house quickly.  When I was an infant, pictures show a checkerboard linoleum floor, dark paneling,  and an orange leather couch, so VERY 1969. The 1965 Mad Men-like kitchen cabinets are solid wood and have served well for the 53 years she has inhabited the home. I don’t even notice the pastel pink cabinets in my childhood bathroom with flower wallpaper, but my husband did the first time he went in wide-eyed. The formal dining room and living rooms, which we were never allowed in except for special occasions, used to be covered in chintz, but now it and much of the main areas display a Southwest style, which I actually like.

And wallpaper.  Wallpaper everywhere, even on ceilings. My mom has jokingly said that if she and my dad were ever going to divorce, it would be over wallpaper installations.

Today I went into a beautiful home in a gorgeous Eastside Seattle suburb (click to see here), but it was hard to see past the wallpaper (and the hundred rooster representations) throughout the house.  Laura Ashley would have been proud of these interior decorating decisions.  A lot of knick knacks, wall paper, and fabric designs in every room. I can see the love and careful choices the owner made years ago to make her house a showcase, but now the style is a bit much for today’s buyer.

So I have some suggestions for both Sellers and Buyers.

Buyers: See past the wallpaper and thingamajigs. Wallpaper, curtains, and brass fixtures can be removed easily. You will make the house your own and it will be so cool for you and your collection of bobble heads can be displayed prominently until you move on to a new life adventure years down the road.

Sellers: Declutter, declutter, declutter. I know you raised your three, beautiful children there and have amazing memories when your daughter wore the biggest bow in her hair for pictures in front of the Christmas tree. It is time to let your home bring joy to other people who see the home through a different lens and can’t see themselves in the home with all of your many possessions filling the space.

These out-of-style homes are well-loved, and that’s the kind of energy you should want in a new home. It is ready to be updated and welcomed into a new era by your family now.  Except my parents’ house…no one is buying that house but me!

 

Posted on August 19, 2018 at 1:04 am
Annie Hyatt | Category: Uncategorized | Tagged , , , ,