It is not a lack of buyers, but rather a lack of stock that is characterising much of the housing market right now. The recent twenty five basis point interest rate hike notwithstanding, conditions within the market continue to by and large favour sellers.
While the economic climate remains muted and many sectors are slowing down, the property market is one area that still provides plenty of opportunity. Although activity is slowing in some areas, our branches continue to report strong buyer interest with excellent attendance at show houses.
Sellers are still seeing good offers and provided they are pegging their price in line with what buyers are prepared to pay, are seeing good prices, often close to or even full asking price.
In many areas, the time that it now takes to sell a property has practically halved from what it was two to three years ago. Well priced properties in high demand areas can sell for well within a month of listing it, sometimes in less than a week.
In most areas, the number of properties on the market has reduced drastically, yet another factor pointing to the still favourable selling conditions. Agents report that in primary areas for example, there are now waiting lists of bond and cash-ready buyers just waiting for the next new listing.
The buoyant conditions have also led to many areas seeing excellent double-digit price growth over the last two years. This, on the back of stronger demand and buyers willing to pay more to get their hands on the right property in the right location.
While the economic challenges are no doubt mounting, we believe that the housing market will maintain its good balance throughout this year. Regardless, there will always be buyers and people who need to move for whatever reason, being transferred to another location, or getting a promotion and looking to move to a better house or area for example.
This means that there will always be activity in the housing market, sometimes a bit less as the case was three to five years ago and, sometimes more as we have seen over the last two years. With demand levels still well above what it was two years ago, now is still a particularly favourable time for sellers.
Be sure to also visit www.seeff.com to view Seeff’s excellent selection of real estate buys or to find your nearest branch if you are looking to sell or obtain a valuation for your property.