Just months after the North Texas real estate market came to a near halt during the shutdown, it’s not only rebounded. It’s exploded.
"I think the first 17 or 18 houses that I wanted my Realtor to look at were all under contract,” said Dave Plumlee.
Plumlee’s not a first-time buyer.
But after renting for several years, jumping back into the market in Collin County felt like a game he’d never played.
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"It's not really like a bidding war. It's more like a silent auction. You get one shot. You put your best offer forward, and they decide if you want it or they want to deal with you,” said Plumlee.
Unlike previous times he’d purchased a home, Plumlee said he couldn't schedule showings when it worked best for his schedule.
Waiting too long after a house was listed would likely mean it would be snatched up before he’d get a chance to see it.
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"So we need to go in, what are the comps? Do we want to try and bid on this to compete with it? Do I want to pay above what we think it will appraise for? All of that comes into play and we try to make decisions on the fly,” said Plumlee.
In DFW where the market’s long been strong, today’s conditions are unprecedented and unexpected, even to those who study it.
“It’s surprising to see that the housing market is in an expansion, not a recovery. It’s already at pre-COVID levels or really above pre-COVID,” said research economist with the Texas Real Estate Research Center Luis Torres.
When asked how demand could exceed supply following a period of economic downturn, Torres pointed to historically low mortgage rates, millennials coming of age and new work from home trends driving buyers into the market.
Meanwhile, supply remains low with new builds unable to keep up with demand and the pandemic preventing some sellers from listing.
That’s thrown the market seriously out of balance leaving North Texas with less than a one-month supply of homes.
Torres said it’s the lowest he’s ever seen.
A balanced market requires a six-month supply though North Texas hasn’t been there in years.
“Once we see this strong price appreciation in housing, some people will be priced out,” said Torres.
But as it always does, Torres said the market will eventually adjust.
"It's really difficult to maintain those levels of price growth appreciation for so much time,” said Torres.
Though sellers are expected to have the upper hand for quite some time.