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Why are homeowners tired of the seller's market?

It doesn’t seem that a homeowner should ever be tired of a seller’s market, right? Well, that is not the case, as I was reminded today after I called the neighborhood surrounding a home that our team recently sold. My message is the same every time, “As a neighbor I wanted you to be one of the first to know the good news that we sold your neighbor’s home quickly and for a great price. While I have you, are you or someone on your street considering a move?”

That’s it. A very simple message. However, it was met with anger, cursing, and three hang-ups. That is right. This particular resident called me back three times to yell at me more.

After forty three years on this earth I have learned that “people are doing the best they can with what they have on their plate” and I don’t take these calls personally. Yet it does cause me to ask, “Why is she so mad?”

Here are some of the frustrations that I have received from residents in hot areas of town where homes have been in high demand with low housing supply over the last few years:

Stop trying to kick me out of my home! This one breaks my heart. My wife says I am an old soul and I love nothing more than meeting a neighbor who has been in their home for decades, has raised their kids there, and intends to live out their life there. I call them homesteaders because they have put up a homestead and don’t intend to go anywhere. The last thing that I would want to do is kick someone out of their home. On the flip side, sometimes life happens and a homesteader has to move because of health reasons or other causes. And when that happens, we want their family to be represented by someone who has their best interest at heart. Someone who appreciates the history of the home and the memories that were created there over the generations.

You just wanna tear my house down! Yes there is a lot of that taking place in the NEJC market. However, there are also a lot of young people and families looking for a home in certain areas where very few are available. I know that there are a lot of NEJC residents that hate the tear down phenomenon that we have seen in recent years. Trust me, they are very vocal about it. And it is important to know that Kansas City is not the only market that is seeing this trend. Tear downs have become prevalent all over the country, especially in landlocked areas where housing stock is limited. The target of these tear downs are often in areas where the housing has become functionally obsolescent in the eye of the home buyer pool and therefore need to be updated, or rebuilt. All neighborhoods have a life cycle and one step in the life cycle is often rebuilding the neighborhood. Lastly, just because a Realtor is contacting you does not mean that they have a bulldozer hiding on the next block over. They might just be diligently and proactively serving their home buying client.

You guys are just driving up values and taxes! This one gives the Realtor population way to much credit. We have no more control over housing values than we do interest rates, construction costs, or lending guidelines. Our job is to simply interpret the market and position our buyer or seller as best we can to accomplish their goals. Home values are solely established by the relationship between housing supply and the demand for it. If supply is down and demand is up, then home prices go up. If supply is up and demand is down, then prices will drop. If both are in equilibrium, then prices will hold pretty steady. If I could control home prices then I would be on a beach somewhere with an umbrella drink in my hand.

I know I can throw my house on the market tomorrow and sell it. I don’t need you to tell me that! There was a time when this statement could have been true. However, that ship has sailed my friends. With the shift from a seller’s market towards a buyer’s market, home buyers have more options today than they have had in years and thus, they expect more from the condition of a home and they want it at a good price. This is one of the main reasons that we are proactively contacting neighbors in the area. If the future sales price of your home is important to you and a move is inevitable, then the market indicates that selling sooner rather than later is the way to go. And please know that “throwing your home on the market” will most likely not get the job done. Nor will it get you top market value. I may sound like a broken record, but today’s market is a price war and a beauty contest.

I share this column this week to let you know that if you were to receive a call or a mailer from our team asking if you would like to sell your home, please know that our intent is simply to serve as many families as possible in the Kansas City area. Also, our market is certainly shifting out of the strong seller’s market we have been in for the last several years so there may come a time in the near future when homeowners miss the feeling of being sought after. I guess we will have to wait and see.

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