When the pandemic started in March of this year, we all believed that it would be over with before the start of summer. Now that we’re seven months into it, many Americans are starting to rethink their way of living. Those who have been living in the big city are finding themselves yearning for more open space. Possum Kingdom Lake is temporarily in a "very brisk seller's market". I have not seen this since I have been in real estate here for the past 6 years. Lakefront properties are selling for all-time high sales prices! This market is especially unusual because of the uncertainty that election years normally have on second-home markets.
Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors®, has been quoted as saying,
“While migration trends were toward urban centers before the pandemic, real estate thought leaders have predicted a suburban resurgence as home buyers seek more space for social distancing. Now the data is supporting that theory. Coronavirus and work-from-home flexibility is sparking the trend reversal. More first-time home buyers and minorities have also been looking to the suburbs for affordability.”
Reasons Why People Want Out of the City
As the health crisis continues, people want to feel safe and healthy in the area they call home. The desire to have more space, both indoors and outdoors, and the proximity to fewer people top the list as to why so many families have made the decision to move out of the city. Not to mention the lower cost of living.
Surveys Report a Surge in Suburban Living
The NAR surveyed real estate agents across the country to better understand where their clients are seeking to buy a new house. Here is what we’re learned in the survey:
• 47% suburban/subdivision
• 39% rural area
• 25% small town
• 14% urban area/central city
• 13% resort community/recreational area
As you can see from the results, many are seeking refuge in less populated areas.
Zelman & Associates, a housing preeminent boutique research firm, also conducted a survey among real estate brokers and has reported 68% see either a ‘moderate’ or ‘significant’ shift to more suburban locations.
Many have asked, how long will this trend of moving to the suburbs will stick around? Since businesses have discovered new and innovative ways to work in remote settings, the shift has the potential to stay around.
How the Virus is Impacting the Second-Home Market
While not all homeowners in the Possum Kingdom Lake area are second home or vacation home homeowners, many are. As the suburbs continue gaining favor with home shoppers, second-home markets are seeing increased interest from luxury buyers.
Danielle Hale, Chief Economist for realtor.com, said, “Stay at home orders and social distancing have put a new value on the extra space. We’re seeing this in the luxury market as well, which could mean there is renewed interest from high-end buyers to find a second-home that is within driving distance from their primary residence.”
We can see from the data that there is a clear trend that homeowners are leaving the densely populated cities to more spread out areas. It could be a temporary change until Americans once again feel a sense of comfort in the cities they’ve grown to love, but we won’t know until the health crisis is entirely resolved.
If you have ever thought of selling your Possum Kingdom Lake property or moving into a secondary property, we are in The Perfect Storm.