Is the market too hot for regular Joes?
QUESTION: My wife and I really want to buy a house. But all this talk about investors and fast sales makes us leery. Is the market too hot right now for regular buyers like us?
ANSWER: No. The real estate market has improved over the last year. We're past the bottom and on the way up in most areas. This has been caused by many factors, including large investors on a buying spree. But there is plenty of opportunity for regular buyers to find a home.
Despite widespread claims that properties are selling within hours or days, this still is the exception rather than the rule. In Broward County, Fla., for instance, the typical home still sits on the market for 29 days before going under contract, down from 37 days a year ago, according to the Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors. That's plenty of time for potential buyers, including you, to make an offer.
It's easy to get caught up in the hype and stay out of the market entirely or jump on a home that might not be a good fit. Neither of those is the right move, in my opinion. While you must be realistic about your buying power, you still need to stick to your wish list and not settle for a house just to get one. You shouldn't stay on the sidelines if you are ready to buy because interest rates and home prices will continue to climb. Remember that it is your personal economy that matters more than the general economy.
You may be out-bid on a few homes and the process may be more stressful than you'd like, but be persistent. If you're ready to be a homeowner, it's still a great time to buy.
ABOUT THE WRITER:
Gary M. Singer is a Florida attorney and board-certified as an expert in real estate law by the Florida Bar. He is the chairperson of the Real Estate Section of the Broward County Bar Association and is an adjunct professor for the Nova Southeastern University Paralegal Studies program. Send him questions online at http://sunsent.nl/mR20t7 or follow him on Twitter @GarySingerLaw.
The information and materials in this column are provided for general informational purposes only and are not intended to be legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is formed. Nothing in this column is intended to substitute for the advice of an attorney, especially an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.
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