By David Floan
According to the National Association of Realtors, the sale of homes across the United States is expected to increase 3.7 percent in 2018 compared to 2017. Driving the increase will be a continued lack of housing inventory to purchase.
Low inventory is a huge problem around the Puget Sound region as listings sit at record low levels with not much change expected in 2018. The result: not many homes to purchase. When homes are available, they are often off the market in a few days. Popular neighborhoods also continue to see bidding wars, cash offers and sometimes foreign buyers. These conditions make it challenging for anyone looking to purchase a home at any price point.
Expectations for Redmond are no exception. Zillow estimates that the median home value in Redmond is $817,500. This is an increase of 16 percent over the past year and that price is expected to rise another 6 percent in the next year.
As the local market remains hot, potential buyers need to take steps to prepare to buy a home before they start trekking from open house to open house. Potential homeowners looking to buy in the Redmond market in 2018 should sit down with a trusted mortgage lender and ensure they are in the strongest position to purchase a home.
At Evergreen Home Loans, we recommend our homebuyers get preapproved so potential sellers know you are in a strong position to close. Preapprovals involve completing an application and providing income information along with documenting the borrower’s assets. This process goes beyond a basic income verification, so the lender is able to issue a loan approval amount. It also provides homebuyers with their budget constraints as they search for the perfect place to call home.
It’s also critical to enlist the services of a local real estate agent who is prepared to move quickly to put an offer on your dream home. As a buyer, you need to be prepared to go in with the strongest offer possible. If you drag your feet on a home you love, you will most likely miss out on moving in a few months down the line.
The local real estate market is a challenge, but it’s still a great time to buy a home. Interest rates have only slightly increased from record lows and there are strong financing options for all buyers, even first-time homebuyers. Preparation and putting yourself in the strongest position to buy is the key. With a trusted mortgage lender and a real estate professional at your side, you will find yourself with a competitive advantage that hopefully sees you moving into your dream home in Redmond in 2018.
David Floan is executive vice president of loan production for Evergreen Home Loans.