I’m writing this the Saturday after Thanksgiving and certainly hope you had a great holiday. There’s no rest when writing a column for the Community Advocate – there was a reminder in my email early this morning.
I’m not an epidemiologist or economist; suffice to say this is my read of the tea leaves and you should consult others on your investment strategies.
My last article gave thanks for 2021; it’s reasonable to ask what 2022 will look like. One thing that’s clear is COVID will still be with us as the news channels gear up for Omicron. My guess is we live with COVID forever and will more than exhaust the Greek alphabet. COVID didn’t stop real estate in 2020 and won’t stop it now.
My colleague Sue Gordon and I track MLS statistics over time. We’ve (gasp) paid to include one of the charts with this article. It shows what’s on the market each Saturday (an approach I learned from Anthony Lamacchia). You can see the periodic cycle of homes for sale and how we are struggling to get to pre-COVID levels. You can also see when people say there is no “inventory” what they are referencing, and this has prompted many “off MLS” transactions. Overall, this suggests a market with strong demand with traditional seasonality reappearing.
Interest rates are creeping up. OMG, some interest rates are over 3%. Yes, this is higher than the 2’s we saw a few months ago. And it does start to temper the market. That said, a quarter or half percentage point difference isn’t going to drive people out of the market. It’s a talking point, and it is not going to change behavior.
Inflation is a concern. We are seeing some of the highest inflation numbers in decades, as food and energy costs rise. This could lead to higher interest rates. If we see dramatically higher interest rates, then housing will be impacted. The tea leaves I look at suggest interest rates are not going to spike.
OK Gary, net it out
Overall, 2022 looks to be a robust real estate year with some of the craziness muting. If you list your home, you may not have six offers by dinner. You may need to wait to get an offer. This doesn’t mean your house is no longer saleable…we are just returning to a more normal market. If you are buying, you will still need to put forth your best offer and go in strong.
Enjoy this time of year and stay sanitized!
Here is a free app for your phone/tablet tied directly to the MLS https://www.homesnap.com/Gary-Kelley.
Gary is heard on WCRN AM 830 discussing “All Things Real Estate.”
If you need advice on selling your home or buying a new one, give us a call at 508-733-6005.