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Things To Know About Our Crazy Changing Housing Market In Tampa Bay

The Tinder Effect on Real Estate, Behavior Modification, and How Home Buying Is Changing with Technology.

Whether You’re Selling a House or Buying or Your Dream Home, Make Sure You Adopt These Smart Strategies

No doubt you’ve been reading the headlines, just as I have:

According to the Times story, specifics may vary, but virtually everyone in the housing industry agrees that years of home-price increases, outstripping income gains, have brought some home buyers to “a breaking point.”

As I’ve reported in recent blog posts, a slowdown isn’t a catastrophe, and it doesn’t mean “crash.” But the current, expected slowdown does call for some behavior modification – especially if you’re putting your house up for sale.

How Sellers Can Adjust

Florida is NOT on high on the list of states experiencing big boosts in inventory – that is, record numbers of competing homes on the market – according to the Fox Business report. The most affected regions are big cities in California along with Colorado Springs, Colorado; Salt Lake City, Utah; Seattle; and Nashville. “Houses that would once have drawn a frenzy of offers are sitting on the market for days or weeks,” says the Times report from Denver.

However, let me be crystal clear about my advice to sellers: When the market softens you are going to need to up the ante and hire a top-notch marketing and listing agent. At the end of the day, your home needs to be better than your neighbor’s house. And to conclude a sale, you may need to convince those buyers to take a look who may not have even considered your house. You can check out one of my recent listings here to get an idea of what I’m talking about! This property was listed with another agent for 60 days with no offers on the table. We were able to make some considerable changes in the way the house looked with better photography, staging, and a captivating description which resulted in a “feeling” about the home. Five offers later, the sellers got the price they wantedTinder Effect in Real Estate

What Buyers Must Keep in Mind

News reports suggest that market realities have given buyers the upper hand. But other trends are in force that may keep you from getting the home you most want at a price that works for you. One such trend is called the “Tinder effect.”

The internet has made virtually everything easier in our lives, but when it comes to home buying, what you see on the web may create the illusion that you are doing an exhaustive search – even when the opposite is true. The “Tinder effect” occurs when you click or swipe to find a match, click or swipe to reject. Often this is done in a split second, after a mere first impression. Buyers then risk overlooking factors that may not come through in pixels and cyber-bites. Some things you can learn only from literally, physically crossing the threshold and seeing a home with your own eyes.

Relying solely on the web could be a big mistake when you’re on the hunt to find your dream home.

You may think that you’ve entered everything relevant into your search criteria. You may think you can select a property based on the number of square feet or a floor plan or some other home fact that you can feed into a digital interface. But as a long-time Realtor, I can tell you that every home has a “feeling.” More than once I’ve seen a buyer fall in love with a home not on his or her list, but one that I insisted was worth a look.

Even a few minutes of conversation with a Realtor can reveal more about how a home might meet a buyer’s needs than half an hour on a website ever will.

Tips for Both Buyers and Sellers

Both buyers and sellers benefit from a Realtor’s representation. This doesn’t cost the buyer anything, and, paradoxically, it will almost certainly put more money in a seller’s pocket as well.  A Realtor will handle marketing techniques such as an open house, which is an event that serves both buyers and sellers. A Realtor also oversees appointments, negating that “Tinder effect” and preventing the awkward moments that ensue when a seller hangs around during a prospective buyer’s tour.

Both buyers and sellers might wish to remember that your time is worth the investment. Sellers: Take the steps needed to differentiate your property. Your Realtor can be your expert and your guide. Buyers: Don’t trust your home-buying decision to an algorithm. A home is more than bricks and mortar. A Realtor can help you make that perfect match!

Good News for Both Buyers and Sellers

I like to end on a good-news note, and today it’s possible thanks to Kenneth R. Harney in his Washington Post piece, A credit score of 704 adds up to good news for home buyers. He reports on the new record average FICO credit score among millions of Americans: 704. Americans are making better use of credit and avoiding mistakes like maxing out their credit cards. As Harney points out, this is positive news for home buyers, sellers, lenders and the overall economy.

So whether you’re buying or selling, if you need the help of a committed, experienced Tampa Realtor, give me a shout!

Written by Rae Catanese, Realtor

Licensed Realtor since 2002, Tampa Bay’s own Rae Catanese regularly gives expert advice and insider tips about the Tampa Bay real estate market via her blog, The Tampa Real Estate Insider. If you are thinking of buying or selling a home in the Tampa, St. Petersburg or Clearwater areas-then this blog is for you. I typically post articles once a week. To make sure you don’t miss my newest posts, you can subscribe here! Have a real estate question? Email me here!

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