Real Estate's Roaring. Sales are Soaring

Five Industry Professionals Share Their Insights On Current Market Trends

Article by Chris Watson

Photography by Terry Fravel

Originally published in Canton Lifestyle

Meredith Bailey

Cutler Real Estate

How would you describe the current real estate market in our community?

We are currently in a seller’s market. Properties are moving very quickly, often above asking price and frequently with multiple offers. It’s incredibly fast paced but patient buyers can still find their dream home.

What should every buyer know right now?

Because buyers must act quickly, they should research a property prior to their scheduled showing. I recommend driving around the neighborhood, studying the listing photos and talking to their real estate agent about local comps. Often an offer will need to be submitted after the initial visit. There’s little time to “think about it”!

Should I get pre-approved before house hunting or contacting an agent?

Yes. This market is extremely competitive, and the buyer needs to know what they can realistically offer on a property. You should allow for room to negotiate within your budget. 

What makes you stand out as a local real estate professional    and agent?

Working as a team with my partner, Nancy Platek, gives each client extra attention.  We collaborate to make sure all the details are covered and “divide and conquer” when necessary to keep the transaction moving. We understand our clients are busy and have extra flexibility with our schedules. 

Nancy Platek

Cutler Real Estate

What are the benefits of condominium living?
It’s primarily a lifestyle change. People in all stages of life can benefit from home ownership, less responsibility for maintenance and a streamlined daily life. Condo living can free up leisure time and offer the ability to “lock and go.” The community provides a neighborly feeling while maintaining individual privacy, with great opportunities to socialize like walking paths, pools or gyms.

What should be considered before “rightsizing?”
A few questions: How much of your current home do you still use and enjoy? Does a move improve your financial future? Will it help meet your lifestyle goals? For many people rightsizing is a freeing experience. 

What should be asked before purchasing?
Because condominiums are geared to simplify life, most will require some kind of association fee. It’s good to question the cost of the fees, what they cover, how often they are paid and what the rules and regulations encompass.

What makes you stand out as an agent?
As a 30-year resident and volunteer in Stark County, I’m familiar with all facets of our community and the needs of its people. I’m an effective communicator who believes in prompt response, attention to detail and empowering the client to make decisions while I handle the process.

Ruthanne Wilkof

DeHoff Realtors

How would you describe the current real estate market in our community?

Interest rates are at an all-time low, and inventory just isn’t there. Many homes receive multiple offers over listing, and there’s no time or room for negotiation. It’s pretty wild.

What’s the best time to sell a home?

Spring, summer and fall are the best time to sell, period. You get to show off the outside of the home, how well it’s been kept up. When people drive through developments and see kids outside playing they know it’s a safe, friendly neighborhood.

What should every seller know right now?

If you’re going to sell, make sure you keep your home in a presentable state. A showing can come at any time, so it’s unpredictable. Make sure you have an understanding of the market. Listen to your realtor when setting a price, it’s their job to know. It can be frustrating, so be patient with all parties in a transaction. We won’t give up until all is over and done with, so stick with us.

What sets you apart as an agent?

Whatever I may be juggling, I make every client feel like they’re my only one. I work just as hard for the 50k homes as I do for the 500k.

Joan Reusser

Premiere Plus Realty

What are the benefits of investing in real estate with a second home?

The trend lately has been that real estate appreciates more than ever before. It’s a good way to diversify your portfolio beyond stocks and bonds. I think Florida has been undervalued in the past but it’s finally catching up to other great places. 

How does the Southwest Florida market compare to our own?

Inventory is at an unprecedented low, but the phenomenon is pretty national. With so many people realizing they can work from home, they figure that they might as well live somewhere they’re comfortable. Many who used to live in a cold, 800 sq. ft. apartment for the sake of a career in a big city are now rethinking that lifestyle. Why not enjoy warm weather and pristine beaches?

What would you say is the best time to buy a home?

Since more people are moving here full time and not just investing as a snow bird, real estate isn’t as seasonal as it used to be. So the best time to buy is ASAP, and you have to come with an approval letter or proof of funds. With such low inventory, you have to be ready to pull the trigger within a day or so of listing.

Mark Memmer

Memmer Homes, Inc.

What are the benefits of new construction?

Remodeling an existing home is tough. You’re living in a construction zone for the duration and financing a renovation can be challenging. With a new construction you get exactly what you want, everything is new and under warranty. There’s a lot less worry.

What’s trending right now?

Home studies are regaining popularity. If you’re working remotely, you need a designated space for it. Similarly, second floor lofts and covered porches are really hot. It’s nice to have an escape so everyone’s not on top of each other.

What should every new construction buyer know?

It’s easiest to start a new construction in poor weather and finish details like lawns and painting in warmer months. Also, high material costs will drop eventually, but between inflation, construction costs and interest rates rising, I don’t see things getting any less expensive as we move on. So analyze your own situation, make a checklist of what you want in your new home, and base your decisions on that.

What distinguishes you as a home builder?

What really sets us apart is our focus on the customer. We’re building a dream home, so we give them exactly what they want as painlessly as possible. That’s why we have so many repeat customers.

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