Local Market Update

There’s a lot of chatter out there right now about the housing market and what to expect over the next few months. With that in mind, we wanted to reach out with an overview of where the market currently stands and some things for prospective buyers and sellers to keep in mind.

As always, we’re here to answer any questions and be a resource if you’re considering any real estate plans this fall!

If you’re looking to buy:

  1. Don’t wait for the housing market to crash: We’ve talked with several prospective buyers who want to wait until the housing market “crashes” before buying a house. If you’re among those waiting for such a moment, you may be waiting a while. There are several key differences between the housing market crash in 2007 and the market today, including stricter lending regulations, the stronger overall financial health of buyers, and the greater amount of equity most homeowners hold in their property. Though it’s impossible to predict the future, these and other factors make a crash unlikely. 
  1. Mortgage rates remain low but are projected to increase: At the start of last week, the average 30-year fixed rate was 2.65% and the 15-year fixed was 3.21%. Experts expect rates to continue rising in 2022. And while they may only go up in total by several decimal points, that can have a huge impact on a home purchase. Now is the time to take advantage, while rates remain low!
  1. Share of homes sold above list price drops after competitive summer: Over the summer, sky-high prices scared off some prospective buyers. The good news this fall is that this percentage appears to be on a downward trajectory nationally and locally. Within Kent County specifically, median sale price dropped below median list price in September for the first time since April. 
  1. Demand is still high, so be prepared to act: While the market is showing some signs of cooling off, the median number of days on market is still much lower nationally than it was last year. In Kent County, the median number of days on market is resting at about 36 days, down 16 days from September 2020, according to Realtor.com. As a result, if you find a house you like, it’s important to be ready to act. Getting pre-approved, creating a concrete strategy with your real estate agent, and knowing where your down payment will come from are all ways to set yourself up for success. 
Local Market Update – September 2021
A Research Tool Provided by the Michigan Regional Information Center

If you’re looking to sell: 

  1. Seller’s market persists: In September, the average sale price was $320,617 in Kent County. For comparison’s sake, in September 2020, the average sale price was $283,891–a jump of nearly $40,000 in just a year. With that price jump in mind, it remains an opportune time for sellers looking to take advantage of a hot housing market. 
  1. Be careful with pricing: It’s important to note that there has been a slight increase in price drops nationally year-over-year, a signal that some sellers may not be pricing their homes correctly for the current market. We’ve seen that in some homes in Kent County specifically as well. Determining your home’s listing price is an incredibly important part of selling your home and usually requires a skilled agent’s guidance. We are happy to do some research on your neighborhood and home type and let you know our recommendations for your house. 
  1. Expect the market dynamics to shift: Experts expect the market will become increasingly buyer-friendly as we head into 2022 due to rising inventory, among other factors. As a result, we’re encouraging all of our clients hoping to sell to strike while the market is still somewhat hot. With comparatively lower interest rates expected through the fall, this season may offer benefits to buyers and sellers alike–meaning if you’re in both boats, you may just get double the advantage. 

If you are looking to buy or sell, have questions about the housing market, or are interested in a home estimate, we’d love to help you.