March 2020 issue - Northern Connection Magazine

Page 14


It’s Your Move – Now Is the Time to Enter the Real Estate Market By Janice Lane Palko

We all know the economy is booming, but has that rosy picture extended to the real estate market? We asked some local experts their thoughts.


Karen J. Anspaugh Attorney at Law

Adrienne Abstract & Closing Company 4499 Mount Royal Blvd Allison Park, PA 15101 Mobile: 231-668-1934 Adrienne Abstract & Closing Company


ittsburgh continues to enjoy a steady upward market surge in real estate, and it’s happening east, west, north and south,” said Michelle Bushée, Realtor, Piatt Sotheby’s International Realty. “For every unit that hits the market, there are 6-10 active buyers in the market.” “Interest rates are the lowest they have been in three years,” said Kim FerraroBuchanan, Northern States Mortgage, LLC “but credit is key. However, I do go down to a 500 credit score.” When asked if it was a buyer’s or seller’s market, Deb Walton, Realtor, Coldwell Banker Real Estate Services, replied, “It’s a seller’s market. Inventory in Pittsburgh is down 12.6%, so if you’re looking to sell, it’s a perfect time to do so.” “It is an amazing time to invest in real estate. The interest rates are low and stable!” said Colleen Anthony, broker/owner, MABC Mortgage. “I am asked whether it’s a good time to buy or sell daily,” said Michelle, “and my answer to both is yes! We simply do not have enough existing homes on the market to satisfy the market demand; however, the rates are so low that it is actually less expensive to buy a home today than to rent.” If you are considering entering the market, there are some things that you should do. “It’s always smart to contact your insurance agent early in the process,” said Peter Piotrowski, State Farm Insurance in Wexford. “We can go out and inspect the home before closing, which can save you money and a lot of trouble” “Given the low inventory situation, there is currently little to no competition. So now is the time to sell,” said Deb. “Interest rates remain low allowing many the ability to afford a home purchase. It’s important that buyers are prepared. They should obtain a mortgage pre-approval before looking for a home and hiring a Realtor with experience navigating multiple offer situations, which can occur due to low inventory.” “You definitely need to be pre-approved, preferably not from an online source,” said Colleen. “Local agents like working with verifiable lenders. If it is a multiple offer situation, price escalation should be considered and evaluated. This should be considered during your preapproval. A lot of situations require the agent to call the lender when in a multiple offer situation for price escalation. Having a local, assessable lender that can evaluate the buyer’s ability to negotiate with price escalation is imperative.” “At Northern State Mortgage, we have grant money available up to $7,500,” said Kim. Michelle cautions those DIY folks who may think that they do not need to engage a Realtor. “In today’s market a buyer absolutely needs a buyer’s agent to represent their interests and be able to navigate negotiations on their behalf. Buyers typically do not pay their agent. A buyer’s agent is paid by a cooperating

MARCH 2020 |