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SHREWSBURY, Massachusetts – What a pleasure it is to finally be able to report great news after a dismal few years. With nearly 30 years selling homes here in Shrewsbury, I’ve seen recessions before. In fact, it’s always amazing to me when people drive through my neighborhood, Fox Farm Estates, and talk about what a wonderful community it must be to live in. What they don’t know, is that during the last big crash, in 1992, multiple developers of our subdivision went bankrupt trying to get the project off the ground. When the second one was foreclosed on by the bank, the bank then went under, until ultimately our lots were sold off by the Federal banking authorities. Now that was a bad recession! Extra credit points to anyone who can tell me what the ORIGINAL name of Fox Farm Estates was, before the first builders went under.
The great news for Shrewsbury home owners is that we are back now and better than ever. Way under the radar screen, we’re seeing drastic inventory shortages of properties in specific styles and price ranges across the board, and this is resulting in a pretty wild scene, with multiple over full price bids being tossed around, just as though it were the peak of the market back in 2006.
Just in the last few weeks alone, I’ve been in several multiple offer situations with my clients,which is not as much fun for us as you may think. In fact, it can be incredibly stressful, trying to counsel the seller on which offer to accept, or advise a buyer on what offer to make. Fortunately I have been blessed with some amazing clients recently, folks who actually listen to advice, trust in my experience, and in return reap rewards beyond their expectations. Often that comes in the form of letting me bring in my pre-marketing team to handle everything from touch up painting, wallpaper, and carpet cleaning to just doing general clean-up work. Other times, it results from just being priced properly to begin with, in the hopes of stimulating multiple offers during that first critical weekend. Either way, it feels great to be able to achieve that level of success at a time when so many have felt let down by the marketplace. This month is particularly notable, as there is no longer any doubt that we have hit a true turning point in the market, not just in Shrewsbury, but in Westborough, Northborough, and Grafton as well.
That brings me to an interesting topic, which is getting into far more depth in the pricing analysis than you might in a normally level marketplace. When fluctuations are rapidly occurring, it is important to be able to set aside the normal methodology of analyzing comparable sales , and have the courage to actually price above that level if the situation dictates. Taking into account the lack of inventory and the increasing valuations that we can see coming, we can more forward with increased confidence in establish a price higher than one might have originally thought possible.
Of course finding a buyer for a great property is just the first part of the battle. The real key comes with evaluating the different offers that come in, and hand selecting the one that will be the best fit – not only based on the offering price, but even more importantly based on the strength of the financing pre-approval that the buyer is presenting. At times like this, with prices on the rise, this is even more critical, as the most vital part of the process is making sure that we can get the property to appraise, relative to past sales that may have sold for much less. This is often where the experience of the agent comes into place, as does the reputation that they have built up within the community of appraisers. Yes, we’ve come a long way from the days of the simple drive-by appraisal.
In the end, what we are seeing here in Shrewsbury are inventory shortages that are worse than we’ve had in a long time. While it’s not unique to our community, it has certainly been far more pronounced here than in most other nearby towns, and that’s something to rejoice over for sure. It’s not just that I list a home and have a few offers, because that happens all the time, but rather that buyers after the fact are asking if they can be put on a list to be notified if I hear of other things coming on the market in the neighborhood. I literally now have multiple qualified buyers waiting patiently for the phone to ring, and emailing me, sometimes several times a day to see what I’ve heard about potential new listings coming on. You would think that would be a good problem to have, of course, but it only works when the inventory keeps coming, and remains in a reasonable balance. That may very well be where you come in.
If you’ve been thinking of a move for some time, perhaps even if you tried to sell in the past and weren’t successful, now is the time we need to chat. Yes, I know it’s cold outside, but as I have said in articles past, sellers often are surprised to find that they may do better in the dead of winter, than in the spring when the tulips are blooming. In fact, based on the backlog of Buyers I’m seeing, perhaps you’ll be one of the lucky ones who never even hit the market. I love when that happens – very quietly, no tracking of snow in the house, no signs, no tumult, just a nice, clean buyer willing to spend the money to secure a great home for their family. Don’t wait until you see the leaves on the trees in May, because by then we may very well be drowning in inventory again and wondering just what happened!
I’m easy to find, as you know so give me a call at 508 845-HOME , send me an email steveshrewsbury.net, Facebook message, or even a note tied to a carrier pigeon – but whatever you do, let’s get in touch sooner, rather than later, and let me show you just what I can do to help make your visions a reality.
Here’s a little video I put together with some Shrewsbury clients. Many people have found it helpful, so perhaps you might too.