Baldwin County Appraisal Services
We had a monumental show today on Uncle Henry’s “Ask the Expert” thanks to the good news provided by the Baldwin County ACRE market trends report and the expert analysis of local professional appraiser, Taylor Parks. Taylor has been appraising property on the Alabama Gulf Coast since 2005 and started his own appraisal company, Coastal Appraisal Services in 2008. Jason is grateful when his clients choose to work with Taylor, as he is one of the most thorough and honest appraisers in the business. It is the preference of our real estate team to do business with local experts in their field that both take pride in their work and care about people.
The current upward trend in the Baldwin County real estate market represents “the best intersection of supply and demand over the last decade” according to the Alabama Center for Real Estate. Sales are up 27% from 2012 and over 50% from the prior 5 year average. This is phenomenal news for sellers, yet it does present some challenges for professional appraisers, who are finding that people are willing to pay more than the current sales comps will justify. Taylor describes this as an opinion driven real estate economy, as opposed to the data driven market we have been so strictly adhering to the the last 5 years on the Gulf Coast.
The disconnect between active listings and sold comps can also create many challenges for the Listing Specialist, who has been hired to not only market and sell the property but also to help the seller arrive at a fair market value. It is Jason’s bold opinion, that neither the seller, nor his agent should be the dominant voice when it comes to the most critical element of the real estate sales process. With 80% of the effective marketability of property being derived from price, it is the staunch belief of our real estate team, that sellers should hire a professional appraiser to perform a pre-listing evaluation of the property. Doing so can not only help with the pricing strategy, but also help in contract negotiations and protecting the seller from a low appraisal during the contract to close period. For clarification on this discussion, simply email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The other piece of major good news for Baldwin County is the nearly 20% drop in its Absorption Rate or months to sell inventory, which is down to 6.7 months. With 6 months being the equilibrium between a buyers market and a sellers market, it would appear that Alabama’s largest county is on the verge of a pivotal market shift. This is great news for property values, yet it does present its own unique challenges for Realtors and their clients in the market to buy or sell. Agents representing buyers must set the proper expectations, so that their clients are prepared to “play to win” when it comes to having their bid selected amid fierce competition. Buyers who still have the “low ball” mentality are in for a rude awakening when the offer is rejected without a counter from the seller. Sellers need to be just as purposeful as they have been in preparing their homes to sell in a buyers market, to ensure top dollar and prevent setbacks from low appraisals.
Taylor’s advice is to mirror and match the homes listed in around you. If your competition has granite and stainless appliances and you don’t and you are priced higher, then you will likely play a key role in helping the homes around you sell first. Positioning your listing to sit and not sell, means more days on market and can ultimately cost thousands in lost profit. As Taylor mentioned on the show today and we tend to agree, “kitchens sell homes!” Invest in the kitchen for the highest probability of the return on your investment, yet make sure you have a firm grasp on the what’s trending in your current real estate market. You can’t expect for a new kitchen to be the answer to your prayers to the real estate gods, if you currently owe more than your house is worth or the other listings in the area with stellar kitchens are lagging on the market, collecting cobwebs with no offers.
For a no-obligation consultation or help hiring a reputable Baldwin County AL appraiser, contact the office of Jason Will Real Estate at 251-866-6464 and be sure to listen for his upcoming monthly appearances on “Ask the Expert” weekdays at 10:00 a.m. on news radio WNTM 710am.