Discerning the dynamics of this real estate market has been a challenge the last month or so. Yes, as I’ve written before, it seems slow. So I’m often surprised when I call a listing agent to show a property that’s been on the market for only a few days or a few weeks to find that its already gone. A small, 800 sq. ft. cabin on 6 streamfront acres near Yulan had 2 offers on it within days of being listed at $149,000. A small, converted one room schoolhouse on less than 1 acre listed for $129,000 didn’t last a week. The common denominator, however, isn’t just ‘inexpensive’. A renovated farmhouse on 15 acres went almost immediately at full price, $495,000, while another at $489,000 also had a deal within 2 weeks. And there are a dozen other recent examples of houses that moved quickly, across a wide range of prices.
The properties that have moved quickly all had some elements of classic charm, and were attractively priced for what they offered. I did drive-bys on all of these houses when they came on the market, and in every case I thought, "That’s a great deal. That will sell quickly." — and it did.
The lesson here is that the market isn’t dead, but its a heck of a lot more discerning. For buyers, a house has to be both appealing and perceived as a good value – and if it meets those 2 criteria, it will likely sell.