When is the best time to buy a house in Myrtle Beach? Some Realtors will tell you that as temperatures rise, home sales rise, too. That’s true. Fifty percent of all homes are sold in summer. But, in fact, the best time to buy a home is when you need to buy a home, whether it’s the result of a job promotion or the kids moving on and it’s time to downsize or the prospect of shoveling snow for another winter is just too much to bear. It’s a good time to buy a home when you decide to buy a new home and Autumn offers some definite advantages. Trembley Group Real Estate Sales Executives are Myrtle Beach and Grand strand market experts and help all their clients take advantage of every season’s market benefits.
Prices Tend to Drop in the Fall
This year’s Myrtle Beach real estate market has been stronger than it’s been in years. Houses along the Grand Strand are consistently selling for a high asking price to selling price ratio and sometimes selling with multiple offers for more than asking price. According to Martin Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, autumn is the best time of year to get the best deal and avoid a bidding war. Yun says that year after year, closings in January tend to show a dip in prices, suggesting that buyers who made offers in October, November, and December got the best deals, he says.
“Some of this is driven by the types of houses that sell in the winter months,” says Yun. Families with school-age kids often account for larger, pricier homes, and they prefer to buy in the summer when kids are out of school.
Most people looking to buy or sell a house find out that fewer people look for houses in the fall and winter. Families with children are settled into the school year and don’t want to disrupt their kids’ schedules or move to a house in a new school district. Buyers are also focused on the upcoming holidays and not house-hunting. This combination of factors bodes well for home seekers. Less competition from other buyers means it’s unlikely a multiple offer situation will occur, or worse yet, a bidding war, which tends to drive up house prices.
Competition for houses drops off in the fall, a time many people consider to be off-season in real estate. But there are still homes for sale — and in some cases, there’s just as much inventory as there was during the spring and summer. “[Fall] means new inventory and repositioned old inventory that did not sell in the prime season,” says Jeremy Jenks, Vice President for Sales with The Trembley Group Real Estate. “This puts our clients in a great position to negotiate.” Jenks points out that many sellers are very motivated to sell before the holidays. If puts a buyer in a strong position if the sellers know that the buyers are willing and able to close before Thanksgiving or before the school winter break.
Sellers are Worn Out
Some sellers who put their homes on the market during the prime selling times of spring and summer might have been a bit overconfident by listing their homes for more than buyers were willing to spend. After months of no action, these sellers are often ready to make a deal. “Sellers who were unrealistic earlier in the year about price will now be more willing to reduce the price come autumn,” says Jeremy Jenks of The Trembley Group. “Because there are fewer buyers and because the sellers are now eager to sell, they are more inclined to take a lo offer than wait another six months for spring to come around.”
“Even though there typically is less inventory, the people that put their homes on the market this time of year are more serious about selling — otherwise they would wait until spring,” explains Jenks. “Motivated sellers tend to be more flexible during negotiations. There is often less competition from other buyers because families don’t like to move in the middle of a school year, people’s lives are caught up in sports and holidays, and generally, there is a cocooning effect that takes place as the days grow colder and shorter.” All of that means buyers are at a huge advantage when house hunting in the fall.
Prices are Often Lower
If you are out house-hunting in the fall, chances are inventory is lower than it was in the spring and summer. During the spring and summer, families tend to list their houses in hopes of selling and moving into their new communities before the school year starts. Yet sellers who list their houses for sale in autumn may have to move for a job transfer or some other reason not dependent on the time of year. These sellers often recognize that there are fewer buyers out looking and price houses lower in hopes of a quick sale. And sellers motivated to move may drop the prices on houses that have been on the market for several months – creating an opportunity to pay less than they would have just a few months earlier.
According to RealtyTrac, the average sales price is 2.6% “below the average estimated full market value” in October. This can potentially save buyers thousands of dollars – especially considering, when comparing a month like April, the same study shows buyers overpay by as much as 1.2%.
In the spring and summer, realtors are generally swamped selling homes and helping buyers find homes. But once the summer ends, their clients with children may have already bought a house or decided to hold off until the end of the school year. Not only this, but many spring and summer listings have been sold, freeing your realtor up to spend more time searching for houses with you. With more time on his hands, a realtor can generally meet you at open houses and get you into homes right when they come on the market. If you like what you see, he can then help you put in a strong offer immediately, positioning you to seal the best deal.
Because spring and summer are ideal times to buy a home, real estate agents are usually busier then. And that could mean you might not always get the attention you want. This is also true for other professionals you’re working with to buy a house. “Service providers, such as mortgage lenders and title companies, are moving out of the summertime sales swamp and can often respond more quickly,” says Jeremy Jenks, Vice President of Sales with The Trembley Group Real Estate.
The same goes for movers. “Because summer is a peak moving season, people often experience more delays and service issues, such as moving companies reaching capacity and running out of trucks to pick up shipments,” says Jack Griffin, President and Chief Operating Officer of Atlas World Group. “The probability of experiencing a delay goes way down in the fall season.”
Use End-of-Year Sales to Outfit The Home
There are bound to be improvements you’ll want to make after buying a house. You’ll also probably need to buy items to maintain your home, and if appliances weren’t part of the deal, you’ll need those too. Wouldn’t it be great to coordinate your home purchase with sales on items you’ll need? According to Consumer Reports, the calendar determines when it’s a good time to buy all sorts of consumer goods. In particular, September is a great time for buying carpet and paint. October means lawn mowers go on sale, and appliances and cookware are cheaper in November.
This Fall’s Outlook
The housing market is generally very strong. The U.S. Department of Commerce recently announced that new single-family home sales surged in July to a seasonally adjusted rate of 654,000 units – a 12.4% increase from June – thus reaching their highest level since October 2007. Additionally, while tapering off in July, existing home sales leaped ahead in May and June to what was their highest pace in almost a decade, according to the National Association of Realtors®.
Looking ahead to this Autumn, the real estate market could remain strong. The primary reason: historically low mortgage rates driven by rock-bottom interest rates, which expand buying power and create a sense of urgency for buyers to capitalize on low rates while they can. According to Freddie Mac, the monthly average commitment rate and points on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is still hovering around 4%.
The nation’s economic engine also appears to be chugging along. As a result, we can hope to see continued job growth, which should mean that more buyers will enter the housing market. The nation added 255,000 jobs in July 2016, as compared with 215,000 jobs in July 2015, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
For more information: Jeremy Jenks, Vice President of Sales, TheTrembleyGroup.com, 843.638.3002
Need help? Call The Trembley Group at 843.945.1880 ext. 1 and we’ll help you look for the perfect listing or buyers agent!
At The Trembley Group, we pride ourselves on being the experts at more than just selling real estate. We are local residents, some of us have been here for a lifetime. The rest of us will be here until the end of time. We love living, working, and playing in the diverse backyard of Coastal Carolina, and look forward to helping you live and love your dreams soon too. Please reach out to us by phone or email for personalized service and one-on-one advice.