How to Take Advantage of a Limited Inventory Market

How to Take Advantage of a Limited Inventory Market

  • Summerville Partners
  • 07/25/23

A limited inventory market sets the stakes higher for all parties. The inventory of the Evanston real estate market is subject to the same influences as many regions across the U.S. Whether the causes for a tight market relate to high-interest rates, local population growth, or seasonal homebuying shifts, the basic facts remain the same: desirable properties tend to find high buyer interest. Properties with significant defects might find buyer interest more quickly, but even in a limited inventory market, a sale is not guaranteed.

It’s a sure thing that nothing is a sure thing in real estate, especially in a limited inventory market. So whether you’re a seller or a buyer in the Evanston real estate market, consider these tips to make the most of your circumstances.

Don’t procrastinate

If you’re a potential seller, a limited inventory market carries the exciting possibility that a buyer might swoop up your property in a matter of days. Depending on the desirability of your particular property, you might even receive offers on the same day when it goes on the market. So, take the opportunity to put your property on the market while it stands out and before it gets swallowed up in a sea of increased inventory.

If you’re a potential buyer in a limited inventory market, you might be tempted to hold off on your search until more properties become available. But it might not be the best idea to hold out for that elusive day, as there’s a chance that your dream home might be waiting for you now. Of course, your homebuying competition will likely be stiffer in a tight market, but there’s still a chance of finding and securing your forever home.

If you’re not actively searching for a home, your odds of finding something are exactly zero. So even in a tight market, searching and offering will dramatically increase your odds of finding the best property for you.

Scour the listings

Before you get the ball rolling to put your home on the market, take some time to scope out the competition. Your listing agent will use a variety of factors to help you to determine the most suitable asking price for your property, but you should also come to the table with an awareness of asking prices in your neighborhood. This time spent on some light research will help your initial conversations with your listing agent to progress, giving you a more realistic outlook about price points at which to start.

Now, if you’re a prospective homebuyer, it’s important to look through the listings to get a sense of price points in your desired geographic area. From there, you can narrow in on the specific properties that appeal to you. Although you won’t find a lot of properties for sale in a limited inventory market, the market might feel overwhelming at first. It might seem as though there’s little to suit your preferences, or you might feel that everything you like is getting swooped up too quickly. But the only solution is to stay on top of the listings. If you see a listing that piques your interest, contact your agent as soon as possible to position yourself with a chance to win.

Take neighborhood tours

When you’re selling your property in a limited inventory market, it’s essential to see your property in the same light as a buyer will. If you use your property as a primary residence, you’ve probably started to subconsciously block out some things on the exterior that could benefit from improvement. Drive around your neighborhood and try to assess how your property compares objectively. Even in a tight market, buyers will often pass on homes that look like they’re in need of repair. Is your roof covered in stains? It might be time to get it cleaned or to consider a new roof.

When you’re considering purchasing a property in a specific neighborhood, it’s helpful to drive (or walk) around the area beforehand. A neighborhood tour will help you be ready to strike when a desirable property comes on the market. Time is of the essence when competing against other offers, and you might not have time to thoroughly tour a neighborhood on the same day as your showing. So be sure to build time into your homebuying search to scout out neighborhood. Make sure you get a feel for the vibe of the area, the commute time to your place of work or school, the availability of shopping and resources, and anything else important to you.

If you’re a seller, don’t assume that your property will sell immediately

Most sellers get excited about a limited inventory market because they assume that their property will sell quickly, and as such, put their home on the market before it’s ready to be shown. Remember that a bit of time and money spent on sprucing things up will pay off significantly in the long run. You’ll command a much higher price if you’ve adequately attended to your property before the showings begin.

If you’re buying, consider neighborhoods that you might have otherwise ignored

Start your home search by targeting the neighborhoods that you find the most appealing. But if you’re not finding anything in that area, you might consider expanding your search parameters.

Of course, you shouldn’t abandon your search parameters entirely. But you might need to be a little more flexible if your goal is to find a property on a specific timeline. You might consider neighborhoods that are zoned differently than your original “goal” neighborhoods. Or, you might accept a slightly longer commute time than you initially aimed for.

Making things work in a limited inventory market doesn’t mean you have to obliterate all of your standards as a buyer, but it might mean that you have to revise your standards from your original intentions.

Ready to enter the Evanston real estate market?

If you’re ready to buy or sell in the Evanston real estate market, consider our team of brokers at Summerville Partners. We’ve seen and experienced every market condition there is and would love to help you secure your dream home.

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