What to expect in 2019:
Forget fevered bidding wars and snap home-buying decisions. Slower and steadier will characterize next year’s housing market.That follows a 2018 that started off hot but softened into the fall as buyers – put off by high prices and few choices – sat out rather than paid up.Affordability issues will remain a top concern going into 2019, exacerbated by rising mortgage rates. But some of 2018’s more intractable issues will begin to loosen up. The volume of for-sale homes is expected to rise and diversify, while the number of buyers is forecast to shrink.” For home sellers, they need to recognize those days of frenzied market are over. They must price competitively to sell their home,” said Lawrence Yun, the chief economist at the National Association of Realtors. “For buyers, there will be challenges when it comes to rising interest rates, but they don’t have to make hurried decisions anymore.”Still, some cash-strapped first-time buyers will simply be priced out, while a cohort of potential move-up buyers will decide to stay in their existing home, make renovations and enjoy their current low, low mortgage rate. Price increases will moderate and everyone in the market will need to adjust.

Bottom Line:
If you’re a seller: Price realistically and be ready to cut the listing price or offer other incentives to get a deal done. “It’s still a seller’s market but not like it was,” Hale said. “Sellers need to be mindful of competition, especially for more expensive properties.”
If you’re a buyer: Don’t worry about going slow when making decisions. “There is less buyer competition and more inventory,” Yun said. “Buyers can take time to find the home that fits into their budget.”

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