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California Real Estate Market Is Heating Up

Laguna Niguel Real Estate Market is Heating up

Ron Buck, Realtor®, blogged several times in 2012 about the low housing inventory in Laguna Niguel. It is still the nemesis of home buyers today as well but also a blessing to the home sellers. Of course we are just now approaching the listing season. For reference, during the peak years of 2005 and 2006 we reached close to 450 active homes on the market. As of today we hit 117 active listings, up from 95 in January.

After the national media declared a bottom to prices in March 2012, retail buyers decided it was a good time to buy. Investors were buying a year or more earlier. Summer brought us low inventory and multiple offers. Inventory declined in the fall because good homes got snapped up so quickly. Home prices went up from 5% to 15% by the end of the year depending on price and neighborhood. Most Realtors® I speak with think we are going to see another 15% appreciation in 2013. Ron Buck, Realtor, knows that these price increases started at the low end, as they always do, and are working their way up. As of today, Ron Buck, Laguna Niguel Realtor, reports that there are only two detached homes active below $500,000, and there are only 49 homes active between $500k and $1 million.

Follow Ron Buck’s advice! Today buyers must be prepared, have solid financing, if not cash, and be quick. Oh yes, it also helps to use a sharp Buyers’ Agent, as Ron Buck, Orange County Realtor, who will properly advise you and write a clean contract. Rising prices and multiple offers always create an appraisal problem since appraisers look at history – not the present or the future. Many listing agents are countering buyers asking to eliminate the appraisal contingency from their offer. This serves to put the buyers on notice that there will be no renegotiation of price if the appraisal comes in low. The board of Realtors says that one third of all sales in Orange County are all cash.

Ron Buck, Realtor, is often asked: Can anything derail the price increases? That is certainly a debate but Ron Buck thinks there is plenty of pent-up demand which will take a while to satisfy. We know interest rates will not stay this low forever. Ron Buck also thinks that when the prices go up another 15% many people who were underwater will bail out, which will increase the inventory. If the inventory goes up sharply and the interest rates rise it could cool this hot market, although not anytime soon, in Ron Buck’s view.

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