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New Challenges: A shortage of new homes and an influx of new agents makes real estate more competitive for people in industry

By Savanah Ramsey, posted Apr 7, 2022 on

The housing market has been everything but normal in the last two years. There have been shortages in houses, increases in homes for sale and price increases, and an increase in real estate agents in the nation.
As the months go on, the changes in the housing market are continuing.

The median sales price for a home in 2022, based on research from Longleaf Pine Realtors, in the last 12 months is $214,800. That is a 13.7 percent increase in median sale prices from 2021, when the median sales price for a home was $189,000. 

In the last two years, there has been a 11.2 percent increase from 2021 in closed homes with 12,649 homes closed, the research indicated. The volume of closed sales is the largest ever in the region, clocking in at $2,864,467,696. That’s a 26.1 percent increase from 2021 at $2,271,678,550.
Even with a large volume of homes closed on in just the last three months, the shortage of homes for sale continues to be an issue.
There has been a 24.2 percent decrease in homes for sale since 2021. From January to March 2022, 659 houses have gone up for sale on the market. In 2021, there were 869 homes for sale, which is a 58.1 percent decrease from 2020 with 2,076 homes for sale.
This year has seen 13,967 new listings, including new homes built and homeowners selling their homes. With a 14 percent increase from 2021 at 12,252, there continues to be a shortage in supply. Currently, the MLS is accounting for 0.9 months of homes for sale in supply for this year.
LPR’s data shows a decrease of 43.8 percent from 2021 that had 1.6 months worth of supply. However, that is also a 51.5 percent decrease from 2020 with 3.3 months worth of supply.

As the supply of houses continues to decrease, many homes for sale are not staying on the market longer than six days – a significant decrease from 2020, when the average days a house would be on the market was 31 according to Longleaf Pine Realtors.
Longleaf Pine Realtor President Amanda Smith added that some other trends are large upfront due diligence and earnest money deposits, buyers willing to pay more than a home is appraised for, and some inspections being waived or inspections only done for informational purposes.

With these challenges in the housing market, real estate agents are having to work ten times harder in order to please their clients.
“The workload has increased quite a bit. When you think about representing a seller the preparation to get on the market hasn’t changed,” said Smith. “Once it goes on the market, the number of calls and texts that you’re getting for offers and the variations of those offers, it can be quite daunting when sitting down with the seller to help guide them to what they want to achieve.”
Even with the overwhelming amount of offers that come towards the seller, on the flip-side as a buyer it is different.
“You’ll hear there’s no inventory and that’s not the case. There are homes for sale, but the demand is greater so there is just not enough to meet the demand,” Smith explained.

While real estate has been profitable for sellers, a nationwide increase in real estate agents has created problems in the industry.
“There are way more agents than there are listings, so that itself is a present challenge, especially new agents breaking into the market,” stated Smith. “The more seasoned agents who have spent years building a business based on their referrals and having repeat clients, have it easier in terms of navigating the market compared to a new agent. Even with the struggle of trying to build their own business, any real estate agent that works hard at the things that need to be done can become successful. If you’re willing to put in the time, the opportunities will present themselves.”
Seasoned and new agents alike have to find ways to deal with the shortage in homes. Many of the new agents are exploring ways to creatively market their names and participate in local associations and organizations for when there is a listing they have their name in the hat to be drawn to represent a seller or buyer.

The rest of the year in the industry and the future of the housing market are unpredictable. Currently, experts anticipate that, for the remainder of the year, the market will continue to experience high amounts of demand with multiple offers on homes, especially large amounts of cash offers.
“I do think that these factors are going to continue for a while, but I’m happy that we’re all continuing to work together through these challenges. It doesn’t matter if we all work for the same broker or not. This is a team sport,” added Smith.

As a realtor there are many legislations in place. Locally, the realtors deal with the Political Action Committee which serves as the voice for realtors to elected officials to keep the housing market attainable.
Also working to benefit realtors is the Government Affairs Director, who works with the local, state and national level to make sure that realtors in the community can keep helping clients.
“Our goal as realtors is the same, whether we’re representing the buyer or the seller, we want to get them into closing,” Smith said. “We want both sides to feel like they are well represented and things go smoother when realtors work together.”
The real estate industry is alive and well as many people across the country continue to work hard to make an impact in their communities.

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