The current market does not favor buyers. I repeat, the current market does not favor buyers.
Allow me to explain. For months, if not years, you have been told that the glut of housing inventory makes for a buyer’s market of epic proportions. Why, the ancient Greeks themselves would write songs about the opportunities that abound for any would-be hero with a hankering for a house. The only problem with this suggestion? It’s just not true.
What is a buyer’s market? Most would define it as a preponderance of available supply and an accompanying dearth of demand. Let’s take a look at both aspects of that equation.
In a perfect financial world, a buyer waits for the market stars to align in just such a manner before swooping in to claim a nest at a fraction of the “normal” cost. It all works great in theory, but real world application necessitates that the prospective buyer be subjected to the same set of variables that has drawn down the pool of demand at large. It’s a buyer’s market when few have the wherewithal to actually buy.
Appraisal difficulties and tightened lending regulations are contributing to a somewhat artificial suppression of demand. The “want” is present in the market. Consumers want to buy houses. They want to take advantage of the greatly reduced pricing and sublimely low interest rates. Homeowners want to refinance their houses so that they can stay in them, thus contributing to the lowering of the overall supply.
Want has nothing to do with it. Without ability, all of the consumer confidence and desire does not translate to actionable demand.
So to clarify the lead-in to this post, the current Scottsdale Real Estate market does not favor ALL prospective buyers, as the “buyer’s market” connotation suggests.
Further, the favorable conditions for those who are in positions to purchase do not necessarily translate to negotiable strength. Well-heeled cash buyers, W2 employees with verifiable income, solid credit history/scores, etc will find that they do not call the shots to the extent that they were led to believe. The bargain bin of bank-owned foreclosures is incredibly crowded. You are elbow to elbow with competing consumers when a new shipment arrives. The mom & pop resellers, by and large, do not have the equitable flexibility to negotiate the 30-50% off of list price that many buyers envision. The short sale properties with the absurdly low price tags are, more often than not, pie-in-the-sky figments of the listing agent’s imagination. You submit an offer 10% off list price to the bank, which in turn proves to be 40% off the BPO (Broker’s Price Opinion) that is performed three months later. The bank tells you they will gladly approve the sale – for 75k more than you offered..
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