What Is A Buyers Market?

by : Andrew Stratton

In the world of real estate, there seem to be basically two types of markets that fluctuate with time. These are the sellers market and the buyers market. If you lived through the housing boom of the early twenty-first century you will be familiar with a sellers market, a time when there are more home buyers than sellers and plenty of competition for properties. Prices tend to be elevated and homes sell very quickly, sometimes even within hours of a listing. But what is a buyers market and how can you make the most of it?

A buyers market occurs when there are more home sellers than there are buyers. This means that there is an excess of inventory on the housing industry with longer selling periods. Consequently, sellers must compete against each other and new home builders for precious buyers. This means prices generally tend to be lower and very negotiable. It is a buyers market because the home buyer has plenty of options at very affordable costs.

So if you are a buyer and happen to find yourself in this place, congratulations! A good deal is still not guaranteed though. Here are some smart tips for making the most of a buyers market.

First, pick an area that has a solid economic status. During a housing boom, most prices will drop, but they may drop for different reasons. Some areas experience price decreases and increasing inventory because their economies are failing. Stay away from these areas. This will be a bad investment in the long run because there will be no industry and business to attract life to the area in the future. Other areas see price decreases because of overbuilding and the trading zone is correcting itself. Try to find these areas, where the home prices have generally seen healthy rates of appreciation. Do some research to make sure the home you are buying has a value roughly equal to the homes offered around it.

Second, do not be afraid to use your bargaining power to the fullest. The sellers are eager and sometimes desperate to strike a deal. This means you have the power to negotiate for a lower price, or other deals like upgraded features, extra landscaping. (Make sure you only get incentives that will add value to the house, not things like flat screen TVs or cars or cruises.) You can also ask that the seller pay your closing costs or points or provide money for the taxes or insurance. All of this can save you a ton and allow you to get a better rate on a loan with a larger down payment. And if the idea of bargaining scares you, don't worry! Your real estate agent will do it all for you, working to get you the best deal possible.

Finally, be thorough in shopping around for a good loan. Even in a buyers market, you need to make your money count by finding the best interest rate available. This will make your purchase even more worthwhile. Shop around by getting quotes and good faith estimates from several different lenders, checking out the annual percentage rate or APR on each loan for effective comparison.

Buying in a buyers market is certainly ideal, but make sure you make all the right moves to score yourself a purchase that will provide lasting savings and satisfaction.