One for the Road

Nick Churton of Mayfair International Realty – a valued affiliate of Intracoastal Realty – looks at a transitioning property market in the wake of the incomparable past two years.

The thing with changing real estate markets is that we eventually adapt to each manifestation. Evolving markets are a bit like a pandemic. First, they are a surprise, next, sadly, some people are harmed by the new normal, and then we learn how to handle the threat.

Frustratingly, just when we begin to get comfortable, something new happens in the world and we have to adapt to a new market all over again. This is where we are now.

Property market watchers have been on high alert for some time, looking for signs that the post-pandemic real estate party is over. But they don’t have to watch too closely as all the signs are there for anyone to see. In many countries, the days of putting a property on the market at almost any price, and then exceeding that figure in a market awash with cash buyers desperate to move, are over. We may never see their like again – or, at least, not for decades. Today’s buyers are a new breed – they have to be. Steep cost of living rises, changes in working practices, difficult travel conditions, and an uncertain and often unstable world have led to understandable caution.

So, with what sort of new market must we become familiar? There are some interesting patterns emerging. It is becoming more of a buyers’ market. There will be a wider choice for buyers, who will feel less pressured to make their final choices. Sellers will have to become used to delay and uncertainty.

How often have we heard that a property’s three most essential things are location, location, location? Well in this new market those things will become price, price, price. In a market with greater choice attracting a buyer becomes more challenging. There are two ways to overcome this: correct pricing and making your home as buyer-friendly as possible – thermally efficient, clean, tidy, decluttered, sweet-smelling, and great-looking from the curb.

Oh, and there is another way to succeed in selling: make sure an experienced estate agent who understands how to adapt to changing times and markets is handling the sale – and then listen to that agent.

Finally, sellers shouldn’t despair. The post-pandemic party may be essentially over, but for sellers with a great real estate agent, good housekeeping, and accurate pricing there is still time for one for the road.

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