I want to preface my opinion with the understanding that I am not an economist, politician, or writer. I am, however, an individual with a unique outlook on our real estate market here in Florida. I am a local business owner who works full time as a Realtor (Multi-time Multi-Million Producer). I own and operate a team based out of Crystal River, Florida in the beautiful Nature Coast. In addition, I also invest in real estate.
As 2021 swiftly approaches, the news is flooded with opinions about the outcome of our recent Presidential election. Joe Biden has been recognized as the person who will likely fill the top seat in America. To half of America it is a blessing and to the other half it is the worst-case scenario. We are nearly to the New Year and with these changes we could see a shift in our housing market. Either way, it leaves you to wonder, “How will this affect us”? There are a few indicators that lead me to believe a shift will happen sooner then later. Uncertainty in the market (especially here in Florida where more then half of the voters voted for Trump), BPO requests/Foreclosures popping up, and appraisals coming in low. All these factors indicate that change is to come.
The uncertainty in the market will likely force potential buyers and mortgagees to be more cautious in their purchasing habits. In response to the number of buyers dropping, we will likely see our record low mortgage rates (around 2.5%) increase by June. As our new budget rolls out, we could see drastic increases. This will force lending companies who are doing tons of refinances, low interest and higher risk mortgages, to shift their focus onto the safer conventional options. As rates start to change, I suggest that you should be on the lookout for possible investment opportunities.
In times like these, my investors are licking their chops in hopes that the foreclosure/short sale market starts booming again. This situation is one that I believe will happen as we head into summer. I have seen the first wave of BPO, or Broker Price Opinions, come across my desk. A BPO is requested when the bank is foreclosing on a property and wants insight into the value based on the current market (much cheaper than an appraiser and same basic information). A lot of these homes were non-performing mortgages before Covid-19 and have continued to not pay even after we have opened back up. These are the first signs of our foreclosure market, which will open purchasing options to investors.
With more foreclosures, we will see home prices drop in order to compete with them on the market. One tale-tale indicator of this is the fact that appraisals are coming in low. I have seen competitive pricing also start to take place. The higher priced houses are staying on the market longer then they were a few months ago. As homes sit on the market longer, you will pay more bills. As the market shifts down, you will also be losing money.
So, what do we do about it? I am here to help. If you ever have questions on the buying or selling of real estate, anywhere in the state of Florida, call me. I can give you insight and guidance to the best path for your expectations. I also provide my listings with a “Seller To-Do” list. I guarantee that everything in my list will return a 2-1 profit on your investment.
Douglas C. Shumate