Companies representing non-traditional business models have reached a tipping point in the residential real estate business and account for a substantial portion of brokerages today, Paul Biagini agreed to this as industry experts said once at a workshop on competition in real estate hosted by the Federal Trade Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice. A national trend of low inventory and high competition for available properties is also affecting the real estate market in the Orange County however, not excluding Washingtonville.
Home sales in Greene, Albemarle, Charlottesville, Nelson and Louisa counties increased during the fourth quarter of 2016 compared with the same time period in 2015. Sales decreased in Orange County.
According to a news release from the National Association of Realtors, housing inventory at the end of December nationwide dropped 10.8 percent to 1.65 million existing homes available for sale, which is the lowest level since NAR began tracking the supply of all housing types in 1999. Inventory is 6.3 percent lower than a year ago and has fallen year-over-year for 19 straight months, the release said.
Paul Biagini said he thinks there are a few reasons for the low inventory.
“I think that we, of course, dug our way out of recession for the resale market, but it’s a much slower process on the builder side,” he said. “Historically, builders have filled in that gap, but because it takes so long to get geared up from a development standpoint, it’s just taking a little bit longer.”
Agents and buyers have to be “doing their homework” and know what could be coming on the market in the lower-priced homes, he said, because they’re going to need to move quickly to make a decision as to whether they want to buy the house.
Paul Biagini, a real estate broker, said a substantial part of the market will not be satisfied with new construction, which will mostly be in the $400,000 and up price range.
“For the most part, we still have more people who want to live in the urban areas under $400,000 than the market is able to support,” Paul said.
“I think that the localities need to bring in more jobs and more employment centers that will be able to provide good incomes for families and individuals to make a living that allows them to live here,” he said.
He said there are a lot of people willing to sell, but they are unsure where their next step will be because of the low inventory.
“I think that the increase in pricing is a typical response to high demand and low inventory,” Paul said. “I think that the only way to bring balance into it is going to be lesser demand, and I think that’s in everybody’s disinterest to have a less desirable place to live.”