Reasons for Optimism for Real Estate in 2013
Camden Hills Realty provides real estate services in Knox & Waldo Counties. The agency and local industry overall has seen an increase in sales activity this past year and has recorded some encouraging gains. “We are optimistic about the prospects of a continually improving housing market going into 2013,” stated John Burgess, owner of Camden Hills Realty.
While nationally we read about a number of positive trends in housing our comments are focused on what is happening closer to home. The good news is Knox and Waldo Counties are in step with many of the positive trends.
Early year end reports for 2012 of single family home sales in our local market indicate about 100 more homes were sold this year versus last. The increase of units sold was up about 16% with transaction dollar volume increasing by 13%. Median prices also ticked up 3% to $165,000.
According to the Maine Association of Realtors, locally the fall selling season (September-November) showed activity up close to 20% over 2011. The expectation for December is also for a healthy increase as well. Real estate is on the mend!
Heading into 2013, there is a “new” balance of forces between buyers and sellers. It’s a trend we have not seen in several years. We are approaching a period where it is both a good time to buy and a good time to sell. An even footing is beginning to develop.
Pricing confidence has come back to the market. Yet, pricing and values still need to be thoughtful and in line. Neither the buyer nor the seller can be overly aggressive. “Fair Values” are the operative words when it comes to asking prices and offers in 2013.
Is it a good time to buy? You bet it is!... Interest rates are low, about 3.5% or lower. Banks are lending. Prices have bottomed out and are headed back up. Projections of appreciation will vary with some estimates calling for at least a 3% increase in values on the low side with others forecasting a high of 10%. Recognize the increases are based on last year, not the previous highs of 2004-2005.
In 2013, don’t waste time pondering your decision to buy a home. Get into a home. Do your homework (no pun intended) now. You will not see a market like this in the rest of your life time. Housing is an investment, but it is really a place to call home first. Take the long view as a buyer.
Sellers in 2013 will see increased interest in their properties. The right product, the right price, the right location, the right condition will all drive the final sale. The equation is simple; inventories priced well against improving demand. Now is a smart time to list. Our advice to sellers… “get a jump on the spring market.”
The view from Camden Hills of the surrounding coastal communities covers a lot of real estate. We encourage both buyers and sellers to contact a local Realtor to help guide the process and put you on the right path to the top.
Happy New Year from Camden Hills Realty.