Attention Buyer…Get off the Fence!

We’ve all seen the headlines; “Housing Starts” Are Up. But how is the market here in Queens and is it time for hesitant purchasers to jump in? The answer is a resounding yes. We have seen a major shift in the market starting late winter and it has only accelerated toward a sellers market. There is serious excitement around properties that are properly priced and bidding wars are artificially inflating prices further. Buyers should expect stiff competition these days and be prepared to pay close to asking. We’ve had a number of homes here in Astoria and Long Island City go well over asking by $50,000 or more in the last few months. First showings, in some cases, have twenty or more potential buyers viewing the property and sellers with many qualified offers to choose from. Rates have crept up slightly but are still near historic lows. The time to take advantage of the lowest prices is far behind us.

So what does this mean in sales numbers?

In Western Queens (which includes the neighborhoods of Astoria, Long Island City, Woodside, Sunnyside, Corona, Elmhurst, East Elmhurst, Jackson Heights and Maspeth) we have seen dramatic changes in the housing statistics over the last year. Residential inventory during Jan 2013 has dropped by nearly 30% compared to January 2012. During that same time we have also seen a 25% increase in the number of closings and the average price of closed sales has jumped by 12%.

Next post on how, as a buyer, to position yourself to find your next home before it’s sold and get your offer accepted in an increasingly competitive market.

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