By Kim Koppen - CRS
Great Bear Properties 

Springtime for Sellers and Buyers in Seeley Lake!


March 29, 2018

As the houses start to pop out of the snow banks this spring, the Seeley Lake real estate market is set to take off!

What this Means for Sellers:

We all know that the best time to sell anything is when demand for that item is high and the supply is limited. Listings are scarce in Seeley Lake and buyers are abundant!

Today, because of the tremendous lack of inventory, sellers can expect a great price for their home; keeping in mind that a "great price" doesn't mean "overpriced!" Sellers can expect a quick sale as buyers have so little to choose from and hopefully fewer hassles with selling as buyers don't want to upset sellers with menial requests. This is the current market in Seeley Lake and could change rapidly once the snow melts and sellers decide to start listing. Once competition increases this spring, sellers will not enjoy these great benefits. Buyers will have more choices and overpriced listings will sit.

As always, if a property is priced at fair market value, with the climate of this market, it should sell quickly. Keep in mind the normal annual appreciation rate is approximately 3.5 percent, and expected to remain at this rate for several years.


As an example, if a home sold in 2015 for $355,000, at 3.5 percent appreciation in three years, the home would now be valued at $394,000. The temptation for sellers is to overprice their homes due to the lack of inventory, however, market history shows that overpriced homes will sit and not sell.

The graph below reflects where prices would be (blue bars) if values had increased by the normal annual appreciation of 3.5 percent versus the dramatic, unsustainable increase in prices prior to the 2007 market crash (orange bars) and the dramatic decline in prices that followed.

Since the Great Recession, we have not experienced much new home construction in Seeley Lake adding to the lack of inventory problem. However, as builders start building new homes and buyers have more choices, sellers can expect to have competition for their homes sales.

According to Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR: "The under production of single-family homes over the last decade has played a predominant role in the current inventory crisis that is weighing on affordability."

Seeley Lake is a unique, local market meaning that events take place here that don't happen in other markets. For instance, what impact will last fire season and this record-snow-fall winter have on a buyer's desire to live here or a seller's desire to sell?

What this Means for Buyers:

With interest rates expected to keep on increasing, we should see buyers aggressively seeking a home to purchase. As home prices and interest rates increase, your monthly payment is impacted - pushing many buyers to get off the fence. Buyer demand usually falls off in the winter, especially in areas of the country like ours. However, we have seen buyer demand remain constant in Seeley Lake this past winter as buyers are making offers and anxiously awaiting new inventory to come on the market.

Demand for housing has remained strong as mortgage rates are still at historic lows. Even with the recent increase in rates, buyers are still able to lock in an affordable monthly payment. Buyers are confident with better-paying, secure jobs.

Buyers Need to Prepare:

Seeley Lake will be hosting a first time homebuyer's class, sponsored by Homeword, Inc of Missoula. This class will be a wealth of information for those looking to buy a home and will focus on Introduction to Home buying and Financial Strategies Workshops. The class will help to prepare ready, able and willing buyers for the next surge of inventory coming on the market. Contact Karissa Drye at 406-532-4663 x12 for more information.

As always, buyers consult your local real estate professional to guide you through the steps of purchasing your home. Sellers, consult your real estate professional for the current fair market value of your property. With guidance from your knowledgeable professional, decide if this is the year for you to move on with your life and sell, or buy a new home and settle down!

The market is bursting with opportunity whether you are buying or selling!


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