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Nov 7, 2022

The Impact of Rising Interest Rates

Sponsored Content provided by Jeff Lesley - Broker, Partner, Century 21 Vanguard

As one of the leading agents here in Wilmington for the past 11 years, it’s not uncommon for me to run into my former clients when I’m out and about.  And, this may not be a surprise to anyone, but one of the most common questions I have been hearing lately is centered on how the Fed’s manipulation of interest rates is going to impact the local housing market. In this article, I’m going to focus on how the impact this has made on supply; stay tuned for next month, as it will focus on demand.

With the stated intent of cooling inflation, the Federal Reserve has been increasing rates since the end of March.  This has had a negative impact on purchasing power and the inventory of available homes in our area has ticked up by three or four times since the beginning of April.

That doesn’t mean we are suddenly in a buyer’s market, however.  Contrary to the messaging that is being pushed out by the media and some of my colleagues, we are still in a market that is highly favorable to sellers.  The increase in inventory may appear significant on the surface, but the numbers don’t lie:  the inventory of available homes remains at historically low levels.

In a healthy, ‘normal’ market that is favorable to both sellers and buyers, there is around six months of inventory.  Right now, we are hovering around two months of available supply and of course, anytime the pace of demand exceeds the level of supply, conditions will remain strong for sellers.

I’ve had a lot of clients and friends question this viewpoint, however.  It has not been uncommon for me to hear that, “My neighbor’s house has been on the market for four months and it hasn’t sold!  What gives Jeff?”

My response is always basically centered on the importance of accurate pricing. It’s unreasonable to expect getting the same price that would have been possible a year ago, when inventory was three to four times lower.

Homes that are priced correctly (or even slightly under the median) in sought-after areas are still entering multiple-offer situations.  This is where experience matters, and it literally pays to work with someone who has a proven track record helping sellers establish pricing strategies that result in short market times and high sale prices.

Also, at this point it seems appropriate to mention that I graduated from UNC Charlotte with a double major in Finance and Management, and from UNCW with an MBA, so these insights were not just pulled out of thin air.  I like to think my education adds credibility and I know that, if I were considering an agent, I would want to know their opinions were backed by knowledge and experience.

Before closing, I should add that if you’re thinking of selling, there may not be a reason to rush.  Rates are going to continue to climb in the near-term but it’s unlikely that demand will decrease significantly anytime soon.  People will always need to move to support a growing family, job transfer, etc., but more on that in my next article. 

For a free evaluation of your home’s current market value or to start a search for your next home, call/text me at 910-297-7071 or email [email protected].
Jeff Lesley has been the #1 individual agent in Wilmington across all brands since 2015, with a track record of nearly 1,000 successful transactions and over $190 million in sales volume.  Together with Greg Harrelson, a leading Myrtle Beach agent and founder of the Harrelson Team, Jeff Lesley founded Century 21 Vanguard to provide a higher level of service for clients, as well as advanced training, coaching and resources for agents. Century 21 Vanguard provides knowledge-backed representation for buyers, sellers and investors in Myrtle Beach and the Grand Strand, Brunswick, New Hanover and Pender Counties. 

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