I thought it would be interesting to share the following information provided by our Association as it pertains to the Topeka Kansas Real Estate Market for 2008 Year‐end.
• Sales are down approximately 18% from 2007
• Listings input for the year are also down 16%, which indicates a fairly stable market
• Average sales price is down about 3% from 2007, however, it is up 1% over 2006
• Average Days on Market for year-end was 71, which is up from 64 in 2007 (11%) and up from 61 in 2006 (16%)
• Year end average inventory was 6 months - still indicating a balanced market
So, what does all this mean for the Topeka home buyer and/or seller? Well, I interpret it this way: Yes, sales were down 18% BUT so were listings down 16%. That means if I am a buyer and cannot find a home of my liking it might be because of the lower number of homes to choose from. The inability for a buyer to purchase may in reality have nothing to do with the ecomony at all. Buyers typically do not think, "OH WELL I can't find a house I like so I will settle for this one over here." Heck NO!!! They are saying, "I'll wait until something I like becomes available"!! AND That has nothing to do with the economy!!
SO, my recommendation is this: SELLERS: Get your house on the market. BUYERS: If you are first time buyers, yes, you now have to bring 3.5% downpayment (welcome to your parents world!! They probably had to bring that and more as downpayment) BUT you have a $7500.00 tax credit just waiting for you to take advantage of. THE REST OF YOU BUYERS: If you are watching any of the congressional hearings, well, you know. If the Senate version passes with the $15,000 tax credit, I think the real estate market is going to explode again.
Additionally, I think we DO have to see some drop in Interest Rates too to stimulate the first time home buyer. Bond Money with a reasonable interest rate would be GREAT too.
FINALLY, If you are real buyers and sellers, stay on top of the congressional activity bcause you want to be at the beginning of the activity not the end. Sellers, get your house on the market NOW and be a little patient. Average days on market of 71 days is Awesome in a RECESSION?