When Covid hit, the business buzzword was “pivot.” Life as we knew it came to a sudden halt, and consumer buying behavior changed instantly. By summer 2020, consumers were buying homes with the same frenzy they purchased toilet paper 3 months before. Homes in rural locations were being snatched up like people’s lives depended on it. And perhaps it did. Fast forward to May 2021…are we in a real estate market shift?
The past few weeks have resulted in the real estate market shift in a subtle side step, not a leap forward or back. 2021 buyers are concerned about overpaying for a property, and they will not blindly accept defects in a property. Their home wish-list focuses on a post-Covid lifestyle with thoughts of another lockdown as a possibility (just like they are keeping at least a few extra rolls of TP on hand, in case).
What has changed
Recently in our area is the announcement of a new five-story, 600,000-square-foot Amazon fulfillment center in Arlington, which will create an estimated 1000 full-time jobs. Since Arlington’s population is an estimated 22,000, there is no doubt that some areas of the southern Skagit County real estate market will benefit.
It is still a seller’s market, but sellers should not be greedy or unreasonable. More buyers’ are walking away from transactions where the sellers are not making reasonable concessions. Buyers’ are trying to avoid bidding wars, and are more content to wait and see what else will come on the market this spring or summer. New mortgage applications were down the third week of April despite a slight dip in mortgage rates. Nothing lasts forever.
Buyer fatigue is real, with many buyers choosing to stay in place and make modifications to their homes. As cities reopen and the protests have reduced, at least locally, some buyers are looking for a get-away rather than relocating their main residence. And some buyers are sitting out until the demand subsides. But record low-interest rates still make this an excellent time to buy if you want something your current home does not provide.
The number of new listings is picking up, but they are still selling quickly, and some still with multiple offers. This will most likely be the case throughout 2021, but 2022 could result in a shift toward a more balanced market.
If you are trying to decide if you should sell this year, please give us a call ( or email) so we can discuss your options and find out what is the best choice for you at this time. As always, all of our consultations are confidential and complimentary 🙂