The real estate market has been dealing with low inventory for a while now, a trend that only got worse during the market madness of 2020. The good news is that the trend appears to be taking an upward turn.

Inventory has been rising since May 2022, and November saw the year’s largest month-over-month jump since then. The current real estate trends going into 2023 are all about the market slowing down and approaching something normal, and that’s a great sign.

If you are looking to buy a house on the Crystal Coast this year, the professionals at Al Williams Properties will walk you through what to expect.

Buyer beware!

There are also some rising—but very risky— trends to watch out for.

Buying and selling real estate through online services is a bit of traction, but it’s definitely not smart. Hiring a real estate agent is!

And dicey buying options like rent-to-own are unfortunately more accessible than ever.

How to navigate lower inventory.

Lower-than-normal inventory means you need to be on your toes when you go house hunting because homes will likely be snatched up fast. In November 2022, most homes spent only 56 days on the real estate market—18 days less than pre-2020 levels.

In 2021 and for part of last year, real estate was moving at a record-setting speed. Homes were selling in hours, above the asking price, and for cash.

This year, however, you can expect a continued slow-down, but you still don’t have much time to mull over your home search. If you want to find a good home in this slim market, here’s some advice:

Get preapproved ASAP. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage before you go house hunting is a must in any market. And it’s even more important when inventory is low.

If you don’t do get preapproved in advance, you risk having a preapproved buyer swipe the home you want right out of your hands.

Sacrifice some wants. If you can’t find the house you want, be willing to give up some nice-to-haves for your must-haves.

Find the least expensive home in the best neighborhood you can afford and upgrade over time.

Expand your search. Is the location where you plan to buy too competitive? You might be surprised at the gem you can find in a less popular neighborhood.

Working with Al Williams Properties professionals who know the area is the best way to find a home that fits your budget and lifestyle. Check out our listings in Atlantic Beach, Beaufort, Emerald Isle, Morehead City, Newport, Pine Knoll Shores, and surrounding areas.

Save a big down payment. Ideally, you’ll want to save a down payment of at least 20 percent to avoid PMI (private mortgage insurance).

For first-time home buyers, a smaller down payment like 5 percent to 10 percent is okay too—but then you’ll have to pay PMI.

Saving a big down payment is possible! You just have to be patient and focused. Who knows? With diligence, you may be able to build up a five-figure down payment by this time next year!

Work with a professional.

If you plan to buy a home in 2023, know that you still have many options. Every market has its challenges. Being prepared is essential.

At Al Williams Properties we can help you do your research to ensure you are ready to find the ideal listing and make the best offer.

We have been in business for more than 30 years, and we have the knowledge, expertise, and stellar reputation to help you make the right home-buying choice on the Crystal Coast. Just give us a call!

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