What’s the BIG news in the Smith Mountain Lake real estate market? Increased inventory and low mortgage rates make it a great time to enter the local market. The month of May saw pending sales increase across the country with reports posting sales up by 6.1%.
An average of 5 million homes are sold annually in the United States with many economists predicting a higher number for 2014, despite the slow first quarter start for most of the country. Locally our 2014 numbers have been on par with what they were last year. Why are so many buying in 2014? Simple. There’s more inventory, favorable mortgage rates, an improved economy and job market.
Local Market Update
Higher-priced homes have begun to sell more prevalently due to the stock market and other economic factors. With waterfront homes seeing an average price increase of $28,572, there is a higher sales price from January through June 2014 compared to the same time frame in 2013. Waterfront lot sales have also increased, translating to a higher average price and less days on market. Condos and townhomes continue to supply a good selection of listings, and sales have kept in pace with what they were last year.
1. Home Price Appreciation
On a national level, the median existing home price is expected to grow anywhere between 5 to 6 percent this year. For 2015, predictions are pointing to a range of closer to 4 to 5 percent. Home prices made their peak back in April of 2006; while we still haven’t returned to the high that was set that year, we are still continuing to see home price appreciation gains locally.
2. Days to Sale
Otherwise known as days on market (DOM), we have continued to see a decline compared to last years numbers. The biggest news on this front is with condos and townhouses which realized a 190 day decrease from 2013 (424 days average DOM) to 2014 (234 days average DOM) for the same time period of January through June. This is great news for sellers. If you are a buyer, then you need to consider acting quickly as to not miss out on a deal.
3. The Value of Buying a Vacation Home
Smith Mountain Lake isn’t made up exclusively of primary residents; we have a large number of vacation homeowners that value the wonderful people, fantastic scenery, and wide selection of activities in which to partake. Tax breaks are able to assist in making a vacation home extremely affordable. While it primarily depends on if you will utilize your vacation home for personal or rental use, each scenario creates its own unique advantages. Consult a CPA for further details on how owning a vacation home can pay off.
4. Investing in Vacant Property
Perhaps one of the more famous quotes that pertains to real estate came from Mark Twain, who stated, “Buy land, they’re not making it anymore.” Many have the pioneer spirit and desire to build their own piece of the American homeownership dream. We have a great selection of available properties at the lake to choose from and many reputable builders that can help in making your vision a reality. Building a custom home has many perks and allows you to personalize the house the way that you want it rather than buying a house and trying to make it into what you want. Buying a vacant lot also allows you to choose a location that best suites your needs.
5. Know the Market
If you are thinking about buying or selling a home, it is important to know the local market. We are currently in the midst of a strong buying season here locally. Contributing to this trend is the great selection of inventory, reasonable prices, and low interest rates. With higher average prices across the board this year and less days on market, the local real estate market is experiencing a hot summer buying and selling season.
The local real estate market forecast predicts that the sizzling summer market will continue. If you are looking for an experienced and savvy real estate professional to assist you with your next real estate transaction, then please consider contacting me. I bring my 20+ year career in Smith Mountain Lake real estate to assist you in your next transaction; whether it be for a primary residence or a vacation home. I have been privileged to work with the most amazing clients and I would love the opportunity to work with you!