First time home buyers are struggling with the rising price of real estate around the country, but buyers in Columbus, Ohio are having a particularly tough go of it. Thanks to a low inventory of homes in the $150,000-$250,000 price range, new home owners and low income buyers are challenged. However, the Realtor and developer communities are looking to change that.
Low Mid-Range Housing Inventory
On the tail end of the Great Recession we are now seeing home prices rise far faster than wages. This home price-wage dichotomy has left younger and lower income buyers in a difficult position, and Columbus is a shining example of the problem.
Over the last year, the county saw 4,600 homes sell in the $150,000-$250,000 range. As of July, there were 392 such homes on the market with 722 under contract. That adds up to a very low inventory of mid-range housing available in the area.
While higher end homes are not facing the same shortage, the price for lower priced homes is lurching upward. Thanks to the shortage, multiple offers and fast selling homes have become the norm.
While hot real estate markets like Denver, Portland, and Austin are now known for this type of mid-range housing crunch, Columbus is an example of the much wider issue effecting Generation X and Millennial buyers.
Owners Waiting Longer to Upgrade from Mid-Range Housing
In Columbus local real estate agents and developers are not waiting for this problem to solve itself. They are taking steps to improve mid-range housing availability in the local market.
A nationwide trend shows first-time buyers waiting longer to purchase their first home. Rather than buying smaller starter homes, first-time buyers are saving more so they can jump right into mid-range housing, further exacerbating the shortage.
One developer and Realtor renovated a five unit building with the intention to rent, but found that he could turn a very fast profit selling the units as condos instead. The two-bedroom units are 1,300 square feed and sell for $179,000.
The Franklinton Development Association, a local nonprofit development agency, found that the strongest demand falls in the $135,000-$145,000 price range for new homes in the area.
Learn more about the Columbus mid-range housing market at the Columbus Underground.
Find Your Home in a Competitive Market
Whether it is your first home or your tenth, buying a home in a competitive market is a serious challenge. Seeing homes snatched off the market in a matter of hours and multiple offers on older, weathered homes can be discouraging.
Working with an experienced, local, knowledgeable real estate agent is an excellent first step in finding your home in a difficult market. Even if reviews are scarce, the right agent is there waiting to be found.
Once you find your ideal agent, take these steps to help you land in the perfect property.
- Review new listings daily on real estate apps like Zillow and Trulia
- Spend time every weekend visiting open houses in your favorite neighborhoods
- If you see a property you like, don’t wait a minute. Contact your agent to setup a viewing.
- Talk to a bank to be pre-approved, not pre-qualified, for a mortgage so you can make a solid, competitive offer.
If you don’t have an agent you love just yet, don’t worry. AgentHarvest is here to help.