Over the past four to five years, nothing in the housing market has resembled "normal". Foreclosures and short sales seemingly were everywhere, prices were dropping fast while potential buyers were not confident of their future employment. Uncertainty was everywhere and adding to the local market problems, vacation homes were not a major priority for many people. No question, it was a dark time.
Little more than a year ago, we started to see some small changes. For the first half of 2012, the majority of my business was related to year-round,first-time homebuyers. That, to me, was a major sign of hope as it indicated that they were confident of retaining their jobs. This segment of the market had been absent for a very long time. It also suggested that buyers sensed prices were hitting bottom (why buy now if the house will be worth less in four months?). And many sellers listened to offers as they grudgingly acknowledged that prices were not bouncing back to pre-collapse levels. A sense of optimism returned!
This trend continued through the summer and fall as we had a number of Kezar Lake transactions. The activity was welcomed, especially since there were few waterfront sales during the previous three summers. Some of the camps sold were on the market for multiple seasons which indicates that buyers were ready this year but not in previous years.
As we enter 2013, will this slow and steady trend continue? Despite the uncertainty of the shameful budget shenanigans occurring in Washington, most signs point in that direction. The number of jobs keeps expanding, interest rates remain low and prices don't appear to be snapping upwards. Visits to our website, KezarRealty.com, have increased significantly over the past twelve months. November year-to-year sales for the state of Maine jumped up 23.6 percent while the median sales price increased 1.92 percent to $172,250 (Maine Real Estate Information Systems).
We are heading in a positive direction and while it appears that we might have a balanced playing field it is still a buyer's market. However, if sellers price a home properly, chances are that it will be shown often and attract potential buyers.
Whether you are a buyer or a seller, please do not hesitate to call Kezar Realty (207-925-1500) with any questions. We would be happy to help. Have a Happy and Healthy New Year!