Buying a new home can be an exciting time. It can also be frustrating and exhausting. To help prepare, here are five important things to know about the market.
1. Is it a buyer’s market or seller’s market — and what’s the difference?
- In a buyer’s market, there are more homes for sale than there are people who want to buy them.
- In a seller’s market, there are more people who want to buy homes than there are homes for sale.
- Look at days on market, list-to-sales price, and other data points to see where your market is right now.
2. What are the local pricing trends?
- Do some online searches in communities where you’d like to live.
- Check neighboring areas and towns and compare prices there, too.
- Areas with higher home prices usually are in higher demand.
- As you become familiar with trends, you’ll be able to spot good deals and overpriced homes.
3. Where are the up-and-coming areas?
- A key indicator of a soon-to-be-hot town is new infrastructure and development.
- Look for new businesses, shopping centers, roads, and schools.
4. How are the schools?
- Schools are ranked by how well kids perform on math and English tests.
- Compare school scores for neighboring areas and try to prioritize good school districts; it’s good for resale.
5. What are the neighborhood demographics?
- How many homes are occupied by owners?
- How many are rented?
- What’s the average age of occupant?