COVID, hot housing market have Upstate buyers making offers sight unseen

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SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – If you’re looking to buy or sell a home, chances are you’ve noticed how hot the housing market is. 7 News spoke with a realtor who explained why.

“A house could hit the market and 20 people want to see it the day it lists,” realtor Brian Hurry said. “New construction has not even helped us keep up with the demand of the buyer.”

Upstate realtor Brian Hurry said we have a major shortage of homes, but more and more people ready to buy.

“Inventory has gone down, population has gone up. People have moved in from all parts of the U.S., because it’s a great place to live,” he said. “So, we have just seen more buyers move into the market with less and less choices.”

Hurry said, while it all depends on the location and price of a home, it’s definitely a seller’s market for anyone whose home is priced at about $300,000 or below.

“We have a lot of people with an everyday job, everyday income, and they want to buy an everyday house. We have more of those buyers than houses to sell them,” Hurry said.

And Hurry said COVID has changed a lot about the way things are done when buying or selling a house.

“We don’t allow overlapping showings,” he said. “Sometimes, sellers are nervous about opening their home up to anybody and everybody who wants to walk through it, and lots of buyers want to see it.”

Hurry said pictures, videos, and virtual tours have become extremely popular, and more people are buying houses sight unseen.

“We’ve sold houses to people on the other side of the U.S. who were never here to see them,” he said. “We’ll put you on FaceTime and we’ll say, ‘Hey, good morning! Here’s the house, here’s the front door.’ We do our best to point out everything.”

If you’re looking to sell, Hurry said it’s important to have a strategy and to know your timeline.

“If you have a $250,000 house that you want to sell and you want to buy something nicer, step number one is not putting a ‘for sale’ sign in the front yard,” he said. “Your house is probably going to sell and you might be homeless or you might be moving twice–moving to a temporary and then your dream home.”

And if you’re looking to buy, make sure you’re in a good place financially.

“Get yourself in a strong cash position, so that you can pay your own closing costs. Have money on hand to get successfully to closing, because it does take money to make a home purchase,” he said.

Hurry told us the good news is interest rates for a home loan will probably remain low for the foreseeable future.

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