So how is a busy gottalotastufftodo person supposed to know a great time from a bad one in today’s real estate market? How can she/he/you/they be (reasonably) sure prices are more likely to head up than down? After decades of experience I can tell you what the pros look for and what they ignore…
First, what the nightly national news has to say about the national real estate market really doesn't mean a whole lot in a local area.
Interest rates are an important part of the equation but not the most important part (I'm getting there). Everyone likes low interest rates but a great rate won't make for a great investment if the key ingredient is missing. There’s a key?
Historically the job base in Southwest Virginia, home of Progress Street Builders, has remained remarkably stable and unemployment runs below the national average. But it's a small market, so a one-stop source for local job growth information doesn’t exist as in larger markets.
But local news media sources stay on top of big job news – a company decides to locate here, another one is hiring, or a big layoff is announced. Local government websites do a fine job of tracking employment – try
Montgomery County, VA Economic Development, Demographics on the Town of Blacksburg's site, Economic Development on the City of Roanoke's site or Roanoke County Economic Development. You will be amazed at all the information at your finger tips.
Watch, listen, and learn a little about job growth in your area and you can decide for yourself if now is a great time to buy… really.
Eric Sallee is President of Progress Street Builders, a custom home builder serving the Blacksburg, Roanoke and New River Valleys of Virginia, specializing in the design and construction of unique single family homes, townhouses, additions and residential remodeling projects.
Progress Street Builders, Inc. is a client of Handshake Media, Incorporated, the parent company of Handshake 2.0.