Tuesday, November 10 2009
Great news to report this month both nationally and locally. The home buyer’s tax credit has been extended and expanded. The $8,000 first time credit is extended. In addition to the first time buyer’s credit there is a new $6,500 credit for buyers who have lived in their current residence for five of the past eight years. Both credits apply to transactions under contract by April 30th as long as the transaction closes by June 30th 2010, and neither credit will be extended again. As always consult your tax advisor for specifics as it relates to your situation.
Locally the dollar amount of closed transactions in October was 11.5% higher than last October. In addition the average days on market in October were under 100 days for only the second time this year (OK it was only 98 days but under 100 is under 100). The best news however is the supply of listed homes on the market. We now have 7.7 months supply of homes for sale. This is the second lowest figure in over two years and is a clear indication that market conditions have improved. Our market is not booming but it is stable and has improved significantly over the past year.
Although no one knows exactly how much impact these tax credits will have on our local market, they will definitely create some new buyers. Given that contracts must be signed no later than April 30th, buyers and sellers should take action quickly to take advantage of this valuable opportunity. Buyers on average start looking at homes about 12 weeks before they sign a contract. If you are considering selling your home it is not too soon to have it on the market. Real estate in our area is somewhat seasonal but last winter, in the slowest market in decades we still sold over 1,000 homes from November through February. While having prospective buyers in your house during the holidays can be an inconvenience, it is a small price to pay if the result is a successful sale and a new home in 2010.
Best wishes for a happy Thanksgiving holiday.