Home Buying Demand Is Up: Here’s Why Sellers Should Act Now

Couple with a sign showing their first home

Despite all that’s going on in the country and its economy, home buying demand is surging. In fact, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association, applications to purchase a home are now up 18% over the year.

Home showing traffic has also rebounded and then some. According to ShowingTime, national showing traffic was up 21% in May, with all four regions of the country seeing upward gains. 

This is all despite historically low housing supply. Buyers want to buy homes, but their options? Those are limited — and prices are being driven up as a result.

While this certainly isn’t good news if you’re on the buying end of the equation, homeowners have a lot to gain by getting in on the game soon. Do you own a home? Are you on the fence about listing it in the near-term — especially during a pandemic? Here’s why you just may want to act now.

1. You can have your pick of buyers.

You’re not going to be hard-up for potential buyers in today’s market. Buying demand has increased exponentially in the last few months — even more so since shelter-in-place orders have started to lift. 

If you live in more rural or less-dense areas (think suburbs or the outskirts of town), you’ll probably see even more interest. Recent data from Realtor.com shows listing views on suburban properties were up 13% in May. Urban dwellers are also more likely to move, according to a survey from Apartment List — likely in an effort to spread out and more easily social distance from neighbors.

2. You might get more than you paid for it.

Prices aren’t climbing at sky-high rates as they once were, but they’re still on the rise — and continued demand should keep them on that upward trajectory. That may mean getting more than you paid for the property. And if you’ve made improvements or have a solid amount of equity in the home? That means potentially even more serious profits once you leave that closing table.

3. Mortgage rates are historically low.

If you’re planning to sell your home and buy a new one, you may be able to expect a low rate on your mortgage loan. Mortgage rates have hit record-setting lows a whopping four times this year, and most experts expect them to stay in the low 3% range for the foreseeable future (or maybe even go lower).

For you, this can mean either 1) a lower payment and less interest paid on your new home or 2) a bigger budget to work with when picking out that newer property. Either way, you win — plus you lock in a great rate for possibly decades to come.

4. You can do it safely and while social distancing.

If the pandemic and all its health concerns have you worried about selling right now, there are loads of technological solutions in place that can help. Your agent can conduct tours on FaceTime or Skype, you can include 3D tours and virtual walkthroughs on your listing, and you can even do closing appointments virtually or in your car. This ensures you — and your buyers — keep the appropriate distance and safeguard your health during the entire process.

Tips for success

Ready to hop on the selling bandwagon? For best success, make sure you price your property right. Homes might be in high demand right now, but many people are uncertain about their finances given the current health crisis. Asking too much for your home may make it take longer to sell (or not sell at all).

You should also do your best to declutter and stage the home before putting it on the market. Most buyers are relying heavily on listing photos and virtual tours right now, so that means a clean, clear, and well-set-up environment is key to making a good impression.

If you are allowing buyers on site for in-person tours, make sure to clean and sanitize both before and after every showing. You should also set up sanitizing stations throughout the house, and stock up on supplies, like masks, gloves, and booties, to ensure everyone takes the proper safety precautions while on the property.

Ready to put your home on the market?

If you’re thinking about listing your house in the coming weeks or months, make sure to get Approved to Move™ for your mortgage first. Embrace’s Approved to Move™ program gives you a fully underwritten approval so you can shop and make offers with confidence.

This can ensure you’re shopping in the appropriate price range and also give you a leg up on other buyers — something particularly important in today’s competitive market.

Get in touch with an Embrace loan specialist today to learn more or get started.

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Aly Yale

Aly J. Yale is a freelance writer focusing on real estate, mortgage, and the housing market. Her work has been featured in Forbes, Bankrate, The Motley Fool, Business Insider, The Balance, and more. Prior to freelancing, she served as an editor and reporter for The Dallas Morning News. She graduated from Texas Christian University's Bob Schieffer College of Communication with a major in radio-TV-film and news-editorial journalism. Connect with her at AlyJYale.com or on Twitter at @AlyJwriter.