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  • Writer's pictureKate Fulford

Portland Spring Real Estate : how to Thrive


If history repeats itself, Spring 2024 Real Estate will be a bustling, dynamic market. This year we have key factors affecting the market:


  • High interest rates: There’s no doubt that the higher interest rates are affecting buyers ability to purchase, especially first time buyers. The monthly payment is so much higher and the prices keep rising.

  • Low inventory: the natural flow of selling to buy up/down has been slowed to a trickle due to the Unicorn Years of ultra low interest rates. People are reluctant to give them up - so when they may have naturally moved (to upgrade or downsize), they are deciding to stay put - or perhaps keeping the home as an investment property. This means inventory is severely limited.

  • Spring Weather: flowers and fauna are in full bloom, making Portland a fine example of curb appeal!



BUYERS TIPS

1. BE READY

Low inventory means homebuyers need every advantage they can get to make a strong offer and close the deal. Being pre-approved is considered essential when submitting an offer. Pre-approval can also speed-up the home buying process so you can move faster when you’re ready to make an offer. Being ready to put your best foot forward when the time comes may be the leg-up you need to cross the finish line first and land the home of your dreams. Need a lender? Please reach out - I know some outstanding people to refer your to.


2. Connect with a Professional

There’s a lot of noise going on in the media about how buyer’s will have to pay their own commissions with the NAR Settlement. This is something that we’ve always dealt with - usually with a FSBO (For Sale By Owner) - and a seasoned agent can help you navigate the commission confusion and ensure you are getting the best deal. Do know that part of the settlement includes a new mandate that an agent MUST have a Buyers Service Agreement in place before showing property. Thankfully, my brokerage has already implemented this practice and we are familiar with how it works. Happy to chat and explain to anyone who may be confused.



A fabulous agent can educate you about the market and the process. Their experience can guide your course of action depending on your unique needs (budget, wants, etc). And they can help prepare the best offer for the situation (whether it’s a home that has been on the market for some time or a hot, multiple-offer scenario). We can also help find the best contractors for repair negotiations. The real estate transaction can be a tricky (and expensive) milestone - take advantage of representation you can count on.


3. Know Thyself

Knowing what you want in a home is an important step in your search. There are so many factors to consider - including your budget, neighborhood, size and configuration, condition, future plans, style, etc. From working from home, to spaces for guests, to your favorite hobbies and pets - there are a multitude of needs that can be addressed. I personally find that my home plays a significant role in my world - and I am particularly interested in helping folks who hope to ignite delight in their life. I observe and file away comments and thoughts to best advise my clients. My extensive knowledge with the market, the process and renovations tend to be a helpful tools in the arsenal as well.  


4. Expand your search

At the same time, low inventory means it's important to broaden your search parameters to explore different neighborhoods and property types. Being flexible and open-minded can help you find hidden gems that meet your needs and budget.


SELLER TIPS

The market right now is a tale of two homes:  the home that for whatever reason is not moving (could be location, price, styling) - AND - the home that is getting multiple offers (usually great location, beautifully presented, special features).  The goal is the same: attract BUYERS to achieve your goals (whether quick sale, highest net, ease - or a combo).



1. ATTRACT MORE BUYERS

When there isn't much interest in a property, buyer's get nervous and suspicious that there may be something wrong with the home that they may be missing, and that could sometimes be further from the truth. You want to price your home competitively to entice more showings. When you price your home correctly, it leads to more showings, more appointments, and more excitement around your home.


2. STRATEGIC PRICING

While pricing your home competitively is essential to attract buyers, it's also important to consider the unique features and selling points of your property. Collaborate with your agent to set a price that reflects the value your home offers, taking into account recent market trends and comparable sales.


Sellers are also hearing all the chatter about the NAR settlement that states that buyer agent commissions will not be posted on the MLS. Does this mean sellers should disregard the buyer's agent?  This is a discussion that will need to take place between agent and client. However, I do believe that offering the BAC (Buyers Agent Commission)  is a marketing tool that is a worthwhile investment. Remember, most sellers become (or have been) buyers. Do you hope that fee is covered for you? Will not offering a BAC mean that a buyer cannot afford your home - and either needs to lower the price or move to another option? It’s not cut and dry  - that’s for sure! Lots to consider as we see how this plays out.


3. STAGING IS KEY

It's without question that to get over market value for your home, it has to be in tip-top condition. Discuss with your agent the importance of having your home professionally cleaned and staged to attract more buyers. Starting up a buzz won't lead to much if buyers walk into your home and are turned off by unappealing lighting, or rooms that are not properly staged. You want to allow buyers an opportunity to see your home in the best light the first time they walk through your door (or see their first photo online).




4. Enhance Curb Appeal:

In addition to the beautiful spring weather, consider investing in enhancing your home's curb appeal. Simple tasks like freshening up the landscaping, adding colorful flowers, and ensuring the exterior is well-maintained can make a significant difference in attracting potential buyers.




I LOVE prepping homes for sale - this really ignites my delight as I so enjoy renovations. Helping you decide what makes sense to do with time and budget constraints is my special power. I have a great sense of what buyers love - and I have the connections that can help get it done. Follow my IG page for ongoing tips.


Are you ready to buy or sell this Spring? Then by all means, reach out to me


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