Our housing market in Portland and Beaverton is hopping! Every weekend, Open Houses are packed with home buyers, looking for a great property at a competitive price. With the number of price reductions I see every day, I think the market is definitely becoming more buyer-friendly.
Winter home buying means fewer buyers to compete with, and sellers are more motivated on pricing. Housing prices in January and February are at their lowest every year. If you buy a home over the winter, it gives you the opportunity to discover things that otherwise might not be noticeable in warmer weather. Learning about potential defects will be useful in your decision making and your negotiations about the final price of the home.
Because there are fewer real estate transactions in the winter, the brokers, appraisers and inspectors all have more time and availability to you as a buyer. Also, fewer loans are closing over the winter so lenders are more likely to offer incentives, lower loan costs or slightly more competitive interest rates on mortgages.
As a matter of fact, interest rates have dropped almost ½% in the past 90 days! In early October rates were sitting at 5.125%-5.25% for a 30YR fixed loan; today, they are at 4.75%.This is largely due to the unrest in the country, which in turn, has had a negative impact on financial markets. While this is good news for homebuyers, my guess is that this rate drop is somewhat temporary, and when things settle down so will rates. So, to sum this up: lower rates aren’t going to last forever, so take advantage of them while you can!!
If 2019 is your year to buy a home, start looking now while prices are dropping and sellers are feeling a bit stressed. I am available most any day to get you into any home currently active on the market. You don’t need to wait for an Open House or call one of those showing agents!