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Buyer's Market or Seller's Market? Why it May Not Matter


You’ve probably heard plenty of talk about whether it’s a buyer’s market or a seller’s market, with people saying not to buy in a seller’s market and not to sell in a buyer’s market.

But does it really matter what kind of market it is? Maybe not as much as you may think.

To understand the importance—or rather lack of importance—of whether it’s a buyer’s or seller’s market, we’ll first need to define each type of market. In simplest terms, market conditions are based on the basic principle of supply and demand. In a buyer’s market, there are a lot of homes for sale and thus a buyer may have more negotiating power and more homes to choose from. In a seller’s market, there are fewer homes on the market and thus a seller may be in the driver’s seat and may have multiple bids on their home.

One of the most overlooked facts about buyer’s markets and seller’s markets is that true market conditions can best be measured on a local scale, rather than on a national scale. Most statistics about market conditions are based on national or regional trends. However, in a particular area, the market can vary from neighborhood to neighborhood—or even from street to street. To accurately determine market conditions, you’ll need to look at housing statistics at a very hyperlocal level. On a local scale, the concept of a buyer’s market or a seller’s market may not mean much if the sample size—i.e., the number of sales or homes on the market—is small.

Whether it’s a buyer’s market or a seller’s market may not mean that much also because most people buy and sell based on their personal needs instead of current market conditions. Unless you’re a real estate investor, you’ll probably buy a home or sell a home when the time is right for you personally. If you’re concerned about local market conditions, keep in mind that every real estate transaction is unique and market conditions may not play a part in your particular purchase or sale. In other words, market conditions shouldn’t dictate your actions.

Even if local conditions do favor buyers or sellers, you can help counteract current market conditions by using best practices. If you’re buying in an area that favors sellers, know your financial limits, add a personal touch to your offer and be patient. If you’re selling in an area that favors buyers, set a good list price, market it creatively and make sure your home is 100 percent ready before it goes on the market.

As always, your real estate agent will be a vital component to your purchase or sale as they know local conditions and can help you break through the stigma of only buying in a buyer’s market and only selling in a seller’s market.

For more than 25 years, Omega Financial has been serving mortgage clients in Massachusetts. Our brokers have approximately 50 years in the mortgage business. You always will receive fast, courteous, and accurate information. Omega Financial, Inc. is a company duly licensed to operate in Massachusetts as a Mortgage Brokerage. We are located in the Town of Norwood, Massachusetts where we have been operating as Omega Financial Incorporated since 1988.

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Licensed by the Commissioner of Banks - License No. MB2671