Normally I meet buyers who have been looking for some time or have made offers on properties already. I also get the usual amount of neighbors and lookie-loos, and once in a while you do get the first-day-out buyers. But over the past three weekends, for whatever reason, those types of buyers have been the predominant ones. And last weekend, they were almost exclusively the only buyers.
What has changed? What has happened lately to drive them out to look? Can it be exclusive to that one city where I was in south OC? Probably not. It could be lower interest rates, it could be pent-up demand finally easing itself, it could be buyers are hearing better news about the local real estate market, etc. I am just not sure, but it seems like a trend.
If you have been following my blog and reviewing the market data I have been posting, you will know that OC real estate inventory has been decreasing over the past several months, and pending home sales have been increasing for both condos and single family homes. Will this influx of new buyers mean even less inventory, especially as we head to the end of the year when inventory typically declines anyway? Could this put some upward pressure on prices as we go into next spring? Again, I am not sure, but if this IS a trend, and if the stats I have already posted continue their same trend, it could very well happen.
I truly don’t see a big increase in home prices any time soon (home prices usually increase an average of about 6% per year in this area in normal years), but we could experience some slight increases in the last half of next year. In the meantime, I am going to keep an eye on those folks just entering the market and perhaps ask them what has triggered them to do so.