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Housing market cooling off a little, but the frenzy continues

Posted at 11:02 PM, Aug 31, 2021

(WXYZ) — In 2021, records have been set for housing prices, buying, and selling trends. It's been a learning process for agents and their clients. Prices are still at all-time highs up 17% from last year.

With COVID-19, the Fed dropped interest rates to zero and mortgage rates followed, hitting historic lows adding to the buying frenzy. The sky is no longer the limit. The new market is forcing some list prices to be reduced.

As a seller, you’re still not too late to the party. As a buyer, you still need to act fast.

“There’s still quite a big demand for homes for buyers. The rates are fabulous still so that’s keeping things moving,” says Gretchen Hudson of Park Avenue Real Estate in Allen Park. She just listed the home owned by Dawn and Tom Wieck and immediately booked three showings.

“I’m nervous, excited, overwhelmed because there’s a lot to it,” Dawn said.

Hudson puts homes into three categories:

  • Turnkey, needing almost no work or updates
  • Moderate, good “bones” that will need some updates
  • A total fixer-upper, likely to stay on the market longer

If a house hasn’t sold in seven to 10 days, it's time to reassess – starting with the price. And there’s the uncomfortable discussion with the clients who have high expectations.

“She gave us the facts. She was honest with us and she kind of talked us down, calmed us down, and said this is what we believe,“ Tom Wieck said.

Redfin is a national tech-powered real estate brokerage that watches trends.

“If you price too high because you’re going to get a bidding war no matter what, you may be mistaken because now we’re starting to see more price drops among homes for sale,” said Daryl Fairweather, Redfin Chief Economist.

Hudson says for buyers, the advice is very simple – don’t give up. More houses are coming. After 20 years, she’s just about seen it all. In May she listed a house in Southgate that had some 90 showings in three days. Our story went national. The Action was off the charts. Hudson says she had 29 offers and $350,000 over the asking price – three being cash offers.

Next year the market could come roaring back, says Redfin’s Fairweather. That’s because many buyers got shut out, for now.