Warm weather and longer days mean just one thing at Smith Mountain Lake- more time for outdoor fun on the lake, golf course or whatever you take pleasure in. It also signifies some sizzling summer real estate deals in a very hot real estate market.
On a national level, the Northeast and Midwest are currently seeing an increase in pending home sales compared to lower sales volumes across the rest of the nation. The Case-Schiller home price index shows prices increasing, realizing a double digit rate of appreciation over the past 12 months. Mortgage rates are at the lowest level yet for 2014, with many industry insiders predicting that they will reach 5.5% by this time next year.
Locally, we continue to see a real estate market that is favorable towards buyers and where the properties sold are the ones that stand out from the crowd.
Waterfront home sales have started to pick up with a 4% higher average sales price so far in 2014. The average days on market has increased, which might indicate older listings are finally selling as an abundance of new listings continue to enter the market. At the current rate of sales we have 2+ years worth of inventory consisting of nearly 400 waterfront homes for sale.
Advice For Buyers
The market is full of available properties and great prices. Look for the best combination of lot and house, but remember that for the most part a home can be updated, repaired or replaced and the lot cannot. Also, be specific in what attributes you are looking for in a home so you can avoid being overwhelmed by the selection.
Condos and townhomes are extremely hot buys right now as the average sales prices are down from this time last year. The current inventory is 187 condos and townhomes which equates to 2.5 years worth. Sellers will be happy to hear that the average days on market from January through May 2014 were 213 compared to 237 days in 2013 and the number of units sold has increased.
Vacant property is a sizzling good deal at the lake due to a reduction in the days on market and a high level of inventory. From January through May, properties spent just 249 days on market as compared to 374 last year. With nearly 4 years worth of inventory and a short time on the market, purchasing a waterfront lot this summer is a sound investment.
Report based on year to date market data and conditions as of May 31, 2014.