Charlottesville Real Estate Market – Hot or Cold?
As many of you know, the Spring 2017 market here in the Charlottesville area was hopping!
With low inventory, there were many occasions when a house would come on the market and have several offers within a few hours and go under contract not long after.
This can be frustrating for Buyers when they see their dream home disappear in a flash, even when their Charlottesville Real Estate Solutions Agent has prepared them to have their pre-qual letter ready and be on the constant look out online and as they drive through the neighborhoods they prefer looking for signs that a house might come on the market so they can act quickly and jump right in with an offer.
In the Spring, people who have been cooped up over the Winter are ready to get out and sample the sunshine. And for many, a potential address change at that time fits nicely with the school calendar.
The Spring “Hot Market” – even one as busy as ours – typically will slow into Summer, and we’ve seen signs of that already. Those who were on the lookout as early as January have found their homes and have either closed on them already, or are waiting for the final paperwork on their newly built homes.
Those who didn’t find their homes this time around might have already settled into a rental in order to wait the market out or until they spot the perfect house.
Fall/Winter is a time when it can appear that Sellers are at an advantage because they know that someone who braves the weather to come see their house is a pretty serious Buyer. They are buying with a purpose – whether they’re getting divorced or just realized they’re adding to their family or they’re getting a job transfer. There’s a reason for that move.
The pattern then follows a further slow down into the Winter season, but there are always Buyers at every point in a year.
While the Spring and Summer months are seen as the most popular times to look for a new home, house hunters willing to brave the cold in the Fall/Winter might be rewarded with a great deal even if there are fewer houses to choose from, because there are also fewer Buyers around.
One of our Solutions agents, Brenda Carlisle, points out, “I am not sure that I would agree that the Fall/Winter season is best for Sellers. Buyers are usually more motivated to purchase, but the Sellers generally are serious about selling as well. I think there are a lot less multiple offer situations that time of year.”
With the low inventory still a problem in the Charlottesville area, many Buyers are looking at building instead of purchasing an existing house. As can be seen by the growth areas in Crozet Virginia and north of town, construction shows little sign of slowing down for all the people that want to live in our area.
Our Solutions agents are happy to talk about the areas they cover and what they’re seeing in the market at the moment.
According to Brenda Carlisle, “After placing a townhome in RiverRun on the market in late February I received two offers within less than 24 hours!”
Jim Dickerson adds, “Since the market corrected in 2008, market trends have not been as steady year to year. For the Winter/Spring market of 2017, sales picked up earlier than normal then slowed down in May/June.
“I’m still seeing good activity in June, just not the level of showings, sales and listings as earlier in the year. I have seen an increase in land and farm sales in 2017 over the past few years,” he notes.
“It’s good to see buyers purchasing land to build a home on in the next year to five years plus farm sales increasing,” he adds. “For the rest of 2017, I look for the market to remain steady till after the first week in September and then pick up through our Charlottesville Thanksgiving.”
And last, but not least, our principal broker, Charles McDonald says, “
When inventory is as low as it’s been, it takes dedication and patience and a willingness to move quickly when the perfect house is spotted.