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Deal Or No Deal

Posted by James Schiller on January 12, 2016
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It probably comes as no surprise that the real estate market as a whole has rebounded quite nicely since the “Great Recession”, but recently the market has been down a little in the last two months. According to NAR:–Existing-home sales dropped off considerably in November to the slowest pace in 19 months, but some of the decrease was likely because of an apparent rise in closing time frames that may have pushed some transactions into December, according to the National Association of Realtors®. All four major regions saw sales declines in November.Total existing-home sales1, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, fell 10.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.76 million in November (lowest since April 2014 at 4.75 million) from a downwardly revised 5.32 million in October. After last month’s decline (largest since July 2010 at 22.5 percent), sales are now 3.8 percent below a year ago — the first year-over-year decrease since September 2014.However in Charleston SC our market has remained fairly consistent and strong so where is one to get a bargain? Recently I wrote an article about the housing affordability problem Charleston SChigh lighting the stress buyers feel to be able to afford to live in the area. So where can one find a “deal” in the Charleston area? Realistically speaking you’re not. Most all of the Charleston area is a seller’s market and especially the hot suburban areas closer to the city downtown area such as: Mount Pleasant, Daniel Island and James Island. With that said you will definitely get more “bang for your buck” the further away you go from the city which isn’t anything you don’t already know. Nationally it is more or less the same thing, but on a larger scale. Cities and states that are more rural and less congested see the largest amount of deals to be had as compared to the rest of the United States. Trulia recently said: of the top 10 housing markets with the largest discount, five are in the “Bargain Belt”. Dayton and Toledo, Ohio, lead the pack, where, on average, bargain properties come with a 19.6% and 18.1% markdown, respectively. On the median priced home, this translates to a $22,900 price cut in Dayton and $19,848 cut in Toledo. Knoxville, Tenn., Buffalo, and Omaha, Neb., round out the top five, where price reductions range from 11.5%-12.8%. It goes without saying that coastal cities and metropolitan cities like DC & NY where space is at a premium rarely see price cuts. Whereas cities with a lot of land available, diminishing job potential, and cold weather have people looking to leave more so and thus more willing to discount their home.Moreover here in Charleston SC it’s the exact opposite. Many older neighborhoods will see home prices stay the same or jump drastically as soon as a home hits the market because no one wants to move. Although the job market here in Charleston has improved substantially in the last 10 years with companies like Boeing coming, there still isn’t enough high paying jobs for most to afford to live near town. If you want to live in our neck of the woods called the Low-country you had better be prepared to pay full price in most cases unless the home you’re considering needs a lot of work and/or updating.
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