I'm sure you've read about the market slowing down. A lot of what we read is using national statistics and you need to do some local research if you're really interested about the market in your area.
While many agents have been complaining about the slow market, I am heading for a record year. I believe my real estate presence with my Chicago suburbs real estate site is bringing me net savvy buyers and sellers and agents that do not have a real estate website are still relying on the old fashioned methods of marketing.
However, as local as real estate is, even putting all of the suburbs together won't give you the exact market your specific town might be in. There is also a different market between single family vs. condos and townhomes and price range also makes a difference.
Even after all the years I've been in the business, I still get surprised. I listed a beautiful home in Alsip that hasn't had much action, even though it's in a first-time buyer price range in the low $200,000's. The day after I listed that home I also listed a single family Orland Park home for sale that had many showings and an accepted contract in a matter of days. Ask that seller if things are slow.
But I also have a beautiful Orland Park townhouse that isn't getting the same amount of activity the single family home did. The townhouse is priced higher than the home was but it is less than a year old and loaded with upgrades. This just goes to show that there is more activity in single family homes and when you get in higher price ranges, especially for attached properties, the amount of ready, willing and able buyers is lower. Combine that with the amount of townhomes for sale in the price range and although the seller won't agree, I am happy to have the showings we've already had for this property, especially with the lack of showings on my much more affordable, move-in condition home in Alsip.
So, all in all, the market is definitely slower. Buyers have so much to choose from and are taking their time making their decisions. However, if you have a property that is priced correctly, like the Orland Park home was, it should not only sell but can sell quite quickly. Location and price can make all the difference in today's market.
Personally, I have always priced my own properties at the lower end of the price range. I have never had to make a price reduction, even in a slow market. Every day is full of properties on the MLS that are reducing price. Maybe if they had been priced right in the beginning they would have been sold by now.
Sellers and agents are still trying to get used to this "new" market. I also believe this will be the year that many areas see their average prices drop. A few in our area dropped last year from the year before, but I think more will join those ranks.
Remember, we can provide all the marketing in the world for a property but it still won't sell if it isn't priced correctly. It will only end up "selling" the other properties around it that are priced right.