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Cabarrus Magazine

With Concord Listed a 'Boom Town', Is Now the Time to Buy or Sell You Home? 'Up Front' Takes a Closer Look

Dec 16, 2019 09:32AM ● By Jason Huddle

Episode 39: Is Now the Time to Buy or Sell Your Home?

Welcome to Up Front with Cabarrus Magazine, sponsored by Atlantic Bay Mortgage, Cabarrus Arena and Events Center, Cabarrus Eye Center, CERTEC Automotive, Code Ninjas, Concord Downtown Development Corporation, Family Wealth Partners, Merle Norman Cosmetics and Edie's Salon and Your CBD Store of Concord. I'm your host, Jason Huddle.
Good day to you and thank you for joining us for another edition of Up Front With Cabarrus Magazine. I was reading an article from, that's smart ass-set dot com, on the top boom towns in America. And wouldn't you know that Concord, North Carolina, little old Concord, North Carolina, made it on this list of top 50 boom towns in America at number 26? Now, this is what the article stated says. Their definition of boom towns are characterized by prosperity and robust development, and they're often desirable places to put down roots and take out a mortgage. Economic growth provides employment opportunities and draws new residents some places, however growing faster than others. And that's why they did this report. Here's some of the things they considered when gauging which towns were growing faster than others; Population change, Unemployment rate Change in Unemployment Rate, GDP growth rate, business growth, housing growth and change in household income. Now I will tell you that the Charleston area pretty much has it locked down as far as growth rate is concerned. Charleston, South Carolina, Charleston, North Charleston and Mount Pleasant, South Carolina are all in the top 10. So, if you're looking for somewhere that's growing even faster than Concord, Charleston area is for you. But if you want to stay here, we're doing pretty well. Here's how Concord ranked. When it came to those factors; Our five year population change, we're up 10.1% are average yearly. GDP growth is 2.96%, almost 3% on GDP, Five year change in number of establishments or businesses, 8.18%, 5 year housing growth is at 12.8%. And the index, we scored 83.53 out of 100. And that housing growth is what got me thinking. You know, we probably need to do an episode on if it's the right time, if you're even thinking about selling or buying a house, is now. The time to do that has the Concord region - and by Concord region, I mean Kannapolis, Mount Pleasant, Cabarrus County. Have we reached that point where if you were thinking along those lines, it's time to do it? Well, I don't know the answers to that, but I have called in a very special friend and guide for us today. Her name is Jennifer Parsley, and she is a Realtor with Alan Tate and Team Honeycutt. So she's gonna be in studio here in just a few minutes to help us walk through over the next half hour or so. So now you know why we're doing this episode. But before we get into anything, it is, of course, shameless plug time.
Last night, we were very honored to be a part of the Celebrate Cabarrus event that was put on by the Cabarrus County Convention and Visitors Bureau. Donna Carpenter and her team did a bang up job in doing that at the Speedway Club last night. They always have us be a part of that. If you are fans of the magazine, or have been following us for any length of time at all, you know that over the last couple of months, we were conducting our Reader's Choice Award voting. We had a nomination phase. Then we had a preliminary voting phase, based on the nominations that we received, and then a final vote, where we allowed people to vote on the top three in each category. Last night, we finally got to announce our winners, and I am pleased to tell you that they are as follows. Our best fine dining restaurant went to 73 & Main. Our favorite casual dining restaurant went to The Smoke Pit. We had two new categories this year. Best retail experience and best overall business. Retail experience went to Cabo Winery, and our best overall business was awarded to Cabarrus Brewing Company. We want to thank everybody for all the nominations. Thousands of votes were received and in those final two categories, it was a very, very close. It was literally up to deadline. Before we knew who the actual winners were. It was literally within a couple of votes, so we want to thank everyone who got the vote out, all our participating businesses, as far as getting the word out trying to round up those votes and, of course, congratulations to our winners. As an extra perk of winning this year, we are featuring our winners in the January edition of Cabarrus Magazine, so make sure that you keep an eye out for that. That will be coming out next month. And that is today's shameless plug time.  
Okay, stick around. We're going to have Jennifer Parsley in studio to help us navigate whether or not it's time to buy or sell a house. Stay tuned.

Welcome back to this episode of Up Front with Cabarrus Magazine. We're talking Today about is now the best time to sell your home. At the beginning of the program, I mentioned about the report where Concord was listed as number 26 in the top 50 boom towns in the country, and I brought in a local resident expert today, Jennifer Parsley. She is with Team Honeycutt, and Jennifer, first of all, thanks for coming on the program today.

Thanks for having me back.

Absolutely. Any time. It's always a pleasure.

I'm always glad to be here.

But I brought in Jennifer because she's so knowledgeable about this stuff, and I wanted to get some answers from you on various topics. When it comes to selling your house, or buying house, quite frankly, it's not that simple of a Should I sell or should I buy. There are lots of factors playing into that, whether it be your age, the current market, the market you're in. There's so many different things. Let's talk about some fundamentals. First of all, a buyer versus a seller market. What's the difference and what are we in here in Cabarrus County?

So you hear that term a lot in in real estate is where it mostly used is a buyer's market versus a seller's market. And in a buyer's market, the bottom line is the buyer has the power. There is more supply and less demand, right? So what it allows you to do is, if you're the buyer, it allows you to negotiate a better deal. And sometimes when when we see that we're in a buyer's market, people tend to toe wait on the sell side and not want to sell in a buyer's market. So I always tell people they'll say, Well, it's a buyer's market. Is that good? Is a seller's market? Is that good? Well, it depends on where you're sitting. It depends on what your plans are and what your next question is to me. So I think that's the simplest way to put it. And then, of course, in a seller's market, the seller has the power, there's more demand, less supply, and then hopefully that allows you to negotiate that. Now there's pros and cons to both sides and again, depending on which side of the fence that you're on. But at the same time, it can kind of play into both pieces of that. If you if you would go back to the buyer's market and as a buyer. Sometimes scoring property in that market is very difficult, because, by the way, you're not the only one that's trying to use that to your advantage, right? I have had buyers in the past that we go into multiple offer situations and they lose house after house after house and being in the real estate market and navigating your way through one of the largest purchases that you're probably ever gonna make in your lifetime. There's a little bit of stress in it, and so when you're going through that and you're navigating that and you're losing on offer on a home that you think is the one that you want to be in, it can really It can really make some buyer step back and say, I'm out. I'm going to just rent. I'm just going to stay where I'm at.

Yeah, I mean, they're not gonna move, or I'm just gonna phone it in and we'll come back to it later. I have a friend of mine who bought a new house. Still have the old one. Still trying to sell the old one. Their realtor was pretty confident that they would sell it pretty fast. But we're about two months down the road now, still trying to sell that house in a market like this. And this is an adorable house. This isn't like a junkie house. It's a nice house in Kannapolis. You know, kind of one of the old mill houses. How do you navigate that when it's a market that supposedly there's more buyers than houses available? And yet you can't find the right buyer for your house? How do you navigate that?

Well, I'm in the same situation with a client right now. Adorable house, great neighborhood. And it's in that entry level point, and we're having showing after showing, and we're not getting offers. And from the cellars perspective is very frustrating. It's also frustrating from the agent perspective.

When it is your livlihood.

It is. It is. So you know, one of the things that I normally do is step back and see. First of all, Is there anything glaring? You know that it might be because there's sometimes, like, I tell my sellers that if a lot of people, they walk in a house and they're always looking for the open floor plan, right, it's the open floor plan and I love it. And I love the sunshine and things, well, some houses don't have an open floor plan. There's not a lot you can do to change that, right? So I would say, identifying the things that could be potentials. There's a lot of things that you can do from a staging perspective. You know, there's a lot of articles that you can read that say a stage house sells quicker than an empty house. So there's a lot of those things that you can go through and you can do your checklist. The reality is, it's about finding the right buyer for that home, and sometimes that takes time.

Does the cookie thing work, where you bake cookies? 

I think it has an impact, because who doesn't love walking into a house and smelling fresh baked cookies? I really I would tell people all the time. Sight, smell, right? Those were the two things that people are going to go on. Um, I think it's little things like that that you can start doing it now. One of the also. The other things you can do is call the agent that showed the home and say, Give me true feedback because sometimes people just say it won't work. Okay, well, tell me why it won't work. It won't work for the buyer. Or is there something you know? Are we seeing a pattern that can maybe be identified of something that we might be able to change?

And you said it. Ultimately, it's gotta be the right fit for the buyer, right? I remember when we were selling our house a few years ago. The complaint of the person that actually ended up buying the house. But their biggest complaint about the house was too many windows. I've never heard that before.

Never heard that before.

Right? What do you do with that? Are they vampires? I don't understand. Why would you have problem with too many windows?

When you're working with human nature. That's one of the things that we also have to remember, right? You can do your checklist. You can do all this. But the reality is, at the end of the day, people have to walk into a house. I can't tell you how many times I love to say, people buy. They look, based on their What. What do you need? I need a three bedroom, two bath. But they buy on their Why. People walk into a house and what they will do is they'll say, This feels right.

Right. I feel like I'm home.

This is home and that's the big difference. You can't put that on paper you can't put - And also you can't figure out what that is for every individual buyer. So it's tough and also sent the right expectation. I do think that we are still in that market where things are moving quickly but quickly, and people's minds mean my house has been on the market for 10 days and hasn't sold. What's the deal? Sure, that's an unrealistic you know, when you talk about a buyer's market versus seller market that's based on six months inventory, Sure, So really, if your house is selling in less than six months, we're still in that buyer's market, so I also think it's the identification of what that looks like.

So just because we're in that market, our timelines aren't necessarily correct in line with what the definition of the market is.

And remember as I tell people, these are averages. And while we don't want to be average, we wanna be one of the above average. Somebody's gotta be below average to then pull that to the average. Does that make sense? And so sometimes it will take a little bit longer to sell that home in the price point depends on that a lot, because the higher the price point, you definitely see those days on market increase.

When we sold our house, we had an offer that we accepted within 18 hours. I thought that was easy, right? Then they offer falls through and it ends up being another three months before we actually ended up selling the house. So you never know.

It's an emotional ride

It is for sure, and you're talking about feedback. You know, people can be cruel. This is your house, and they just come totally dump on your house. And you're like, What did I do to you, man?

Well, I tell people this is like calling somebody's child ugly.


Right? Like, let's as I'm gathering that if I'm showing a home for a buyer, I filter that through the you know, you want to be helpful to the seller on the other end to say, Gosh, these are some of the things that we identified, you know, like one of the things is pet odor. That's Ah, that's a tricky subject. People love their pets. Listen, I'm all about my pets. But if you have a buyer that's seeing your home that doesn't have animals, is allergic to animals, you know, and the smell the dog, you know, the bowls out. It's little things like that again that I could provide you that feedback. And as a pet owner, you could say I'm offended. So it is an interesting balance.

Yeah, for sure. Okay, we're already out of time for this first segment, and we've covered one subject. So here's what I'm gonna do. I'm gonna throw it to break. And if you don't mind sticking around, we're going to come back and talk about the other 23 things on our list within another 10 minutes. Is that cool enough?

Sounds great.

All right, Great. We're here with Jennifer Parsley today from Team Honeycutt, Alan Tate Realtors. She is helping us navigate is now the right time to sell your house or buy, for that matter. Stay tuned. 

And welcome back we're, sitting here with Jennifer Parsley in studio today as she's helping us navigate selling or buying a house in this current market in Cabarrus County. And we talked at length about buyers versus sellers markets. Let's talk about the holidays, shall we? It is, in fact, less than two weeks to Christmas. Can you believe that? Last Christmas of the decade.

Oh wow, that's true. 

I know it's just sort of hit me the last couple weeks. This is the last Christmas of the decade. But anyway, Jennifer, let's talk about selling the house at the Holidays. As if the holidays weren't stressful enough, let's add buying or selling a house to the mix. Is that advisable? Is there a reason why you should or shouldn't do that?

Well, I think again, like with any situation it goes back to, you know, where you at in your life. We do see a lot of people either say I want to list my house, but I'm gonna wait until after the holidays. Or we have people that have their house on the market. And as we're coming up against holidays will say I'm going to remove my house from the market, and then I'm gonna put it back on then springtime. And I think part of that is the holidays make us all crazy, right? As wonderful as they may be, they are stressful. And, you know, I always tell my sellers, I will say this. So the sellers thinking, I want to slow down. I want to make sure that I'm, you know, kind of mitigating all the commitments that I have. But you think about that from a buyer's perspective. Most of the time when we have buyers that are setting appointments that are seeing your house, they're serious buyers, and that's the difference. You don't have the individuals that are, honey, let's start looking passively looking a year from now, they are not having those conversations during holiday, right? 
But isn't it true that a lot of people, if they are going to be moving, they like to move during that Christmas break? So when they get when the kids go back to school, they're ready to start even the new school or wherever they like to move in during those two weeks. Is that true? I've heard that before. 

You see that sometimes, not as much as we do in the summer. You know that transition in summer. And I think part of that reason is because sometimes you may be in a different school system, you know, it's a bigger transition. We see more people that are looking during the holidays. You know, the buyers that are we're off work because if you think about that, sometimes you've got either individuals or family or husband and wife that they're going to go out and look for homes. I have the day off tomorrow that I don't normally have a Thursday off. We're gonna go out and look for some houses. So it just kind of depends on the situation.

You told me before we turn the microphone on that one in six people live in a multi generational house. First of all was the definition of a multi generational house? Because, I would think that parents and kids constitute multigenerational. But I guess that means grand parents or other relatives. Is that right?

That's right. So I think the textbook definition is adults that are over 25 that are living in a home. So it could also be constituted by, you know, our millennials that we talk about sometimes that are. Maybe they're starting out their professional career. And once they hit over the age of 25 they're still living at home with the parents that's considered multigenerational. Okay, we see a lot of that, but what we see a lot of is Mom and dad with kids with Grandma and Grandpa, So I think that's a lot of where when we see we hear the term multi generational, it lends itself to both of those things.

So you mentioned grand parents. Now we're getting to the part where, especially the baby boomers are getting to an age where there it's harder for them to manage. That's large house that they've had for 40 - 50 years. How are people dealing with that? And are they downsizing? Are they moving or they stay input?

So I get a call at least one time a week, and usually it is from the child of the aging parent that says You need to go talk to Mom and Dad and tell them it's time to sell their house. And my first response to that is, Well, I can't make them do anything right because we all know if we have parents. They are sometimes set in their ways, and they and a lot of times what you see is these are individuals that have been in a home for 30 - 40 years, and then even if they will entertain the conversation to have around looking at downsizing or you know, a lot of times it's Mom and Dad. You can't take care of the yard anymore. You know, why don't you consider a townhome or something of that nature? And it doesn't make sense to them from a financial standpoint, why would I not stay in a house that's larger? That is potentially paid for Or definitely I'm not going to take a second mortgage out or another mortgage out at my age. You know, to do that, it doesn't make sense to them. And I think that trend so they're aging in place that's impacting our inventory. And then I think what also happens is if I'm aging in place and I'm still in a 3000 square foot house, sometimes what happens is then the kids move in with the parent because a lot of times in these multigenerational situations, we think about it's grandma and Grandpa helping me with my Children sometimes. But sometimes it's the Children and even the grandchildren helping take your grandma Grandpa. So it's that full circle.

You mentioned aging in place affects inventory. Let's talk about the current market conditions about inventory. Are we in a market, in Cabarrus County, where there are more people needing houses than inventory available. Is that where we are?

We're definitely seeing that, although there's a lot of factors that are playing into it because we have you have the existing inventory and, of course, with our growth in Cabarrus County, we're seeing a lot of new construction pop up. You know, I'm hearing that from a lot of people, and that also impacts when we go back talking about I've got my house on the market and I'm not selling it sometimes that new construction really has an impact on that piece of it, too, because people are comparing existing with new and sometimes that price is pretty close to being the same. So we're definitely seeing that I did pull some numbers. It's December, so I only have October numbers.


We haven't quite reported those yet, but if you look at where we're at right now again, six months is a normal supply market. We're at 1.9 month supply, so we're definitely seeing, absolutely we're seeing that piece of it that we don't have enough inventory to kind of fit all the buyers that are coming into the market and then if you also look at kind of month over month or year over year from September 2019 toe October 2019 month over month we were up 4.6%. So when I saw that increase and then your every year it's been 5.5%. So we are seeing that steady incline, and it's been like that for several years in Cabarrus County and you know it lends itself to the question of all right. At what point does it does it stop?

Right. Or does it?

Or does it? Or does it? I mean, that's a good question. You know, I think you hear a lot of people going back to those recession that 2008 kind of that talk. But you know, what came out of that was a lot of lending restrictions that are in place now. So things are a lot different because a lot of people jump immediately to that. Things are a lot different from -

Well, there are ebbs and flows in the economy, obviously. But 2008 was an extreme situation, probably the worst we've seen since the thirties, so I think it's important for people to remember that. And as you mentioned, there were things that led to that recession that had to deal with unwise lending, people taking out loans that they couldn't afford and eventually, you know, it just caught up with us. Sure so, and as you mentioned, there are things in place to prevent that. So I think it's important for people to remember that that just because there's growth again doesn't mean the bubble is necessarily going to pop anytime soon.  

That's  correct.

All right. But in the couple minutes that we have left that, and I do mean couple, Finding a trusted advisor. If you are looking to buy or sell your home, what should you look for in a Realtor? Because just because they have a Realtor's license doesn't necessarily mean there are completely equipped to help you and depending on your needs too. 

I would agree with that. So I think the average is a person knows at least 7-8 Realtors right in your circle, and I think that's probably true as you navigate that process. I think one of the things that's important to remember is if we have a tax question, we pick up the phone. We call our accountant, right? And the reason that we're doing that is we may trust him or her to do our taxes. And at the same time we also trust them from an advisement standpoint. And we trust them from a standpoint of their our knowledge base there, the one that's educating us. And there's no one that reality is saying, Just tell me what I need today, right? Or if I'm gonna draw up a contract, I call an attorney. And I think one of the things that you want to look for in a real estate agent is not only the relationship piece, because the relationship is very important and that's kind of the foundation. But in that piece of it, is it someone that is constantly knows? What the market is doing has their finger on that pulls And it's really educating people. And experience has a lot to do with that. You know, our team has over 30 years of experience in real estate. That's a lot of navigating. The ins and outs of every transaction is different. Every single transaction is different.

So let me throw you this curveball, okay?  
 All right.  

Uh, let's say you're trying to sell your house and Uncle Harry over here just got his realtor's license. And why don't you help him out and let him let him try to sell your house for you? How do you navigate that?

I hear that a lot, right? And I always navigate it with first and foremost. It's It's the decision of the buyer or the seller. You know, whichever piece that you're coming from, I also navigate it from sometimes that educational and that experiential piece of it. And I get that, you know, you wanna help somebody out. But to me, helping somebody out is, you know, maybe doing him a solid in another way, not trusting them with your largest purchase or sale of an asset. And at the same time, it is so absolutely common. And I just tell people you ultimately have to make that decision. But I had a lady that called me about six weeks ago, and she had closed on her. She sold her house, she closed on it and the buyer had come back and there was some air condition issues and the by heard come back and said, You need to fix this. They already closed on the house, right? And she said, My agent, who, by the way, was her neighbor that had gotten their real estate license two months before, said she didn't know. You told me to call somebody that knew, and I decided to call you. So first of all, I thank her for that because that made me feel like, Okay, this is the position that I want to be in, right? I want to be that trusted advisor, but I think it's an example of. There's a lot of twists and turns in that piece when you're walking that journey and assembling your team, and you just want to make sure that you got the best people on your team.

You have to tell us what happened, though. Did she end up paying for the A/C?
She did not. 
I didn't think so.  Sorry, dude, you closed. That's what inspections are for.

That's right. That's what we went through the whole process, and I explained that to our and then when she was, she felt more confident and she was able to call him back and explain that and say, Listen, I talked to my agent and this is what set? And he backed off. And so it was just more a matter of two people don't know. And that's the thing we don't know. And so you wanna you wanna position yourself besides someone that does know and that can navigate that, but also someone that won't step into another lane that they're not supposed to be right? That is outside of my purview. We need to speak to an attorney or we need to speak to your mortgage lender. That's a big piece of it, too. That's not my purview. And so you need to make sure you find an agent that is great at what they do, and it's great and assembling that team with them to say this is his.

Excellent. I'm sure we could spend another half hour talking about this, but we were out of time. Jennifer Parsley, with Team Honeycutt, Alan Tate Realtors, thank you so much for coming in and sharing your wealth of knowledge with us today.

Thank you. It's always a pleasure to be here.

You guys stay tuned. We will be back and close up the show in just a moment.

I want to thank Jennifer Parsley for coming into the studio today. I really appreciate her insight and wisdom as far as helping us navigate through buying or selling a house during our conversation. If you recall, we were talking about buying or selling during the holidays, and a lot of people, as she said, do take their house is off the market during the holidays. One thing I neglected to mention during the conversation was the fact that when we were selling our house a few years ago, we received the offer we ultimately accepted, on Christmas Eve that year. So, there's obviously no cut and dried answer. As far as the holidays are concerned, some people say, you know, it's not a good time to be selling your house, but yet we actually did sell our house on Christmas Eve. Merry Christmas to us, right? So just to add that into the mix and create more confusion, I'm happy to do that. Before we get off the subject of selling your house. I would like to mention that one of our sponsors can be a great help to you if you are looking to purchase a house, and that's Diane Wilkowski at Atlantic Bay Mortgage. So, if you are looking to seek out a mortgage, get a good rate, get somebody that you can trust, give Diane Wilkowski a call at Atlantic Bay Mortgage, and we certainly appreciate her support of this program. Next week will be our final Up Front with Cabarrus Magazine for the year, and we're going to help you find local solutions, for getting those last minute products. We all do it. We all wait till the last second, and we're here to help you, so make sure that you tune in and get some great ideas on how you can both find those last minute great gifts for your loved ones, and your family, and also support local businesses as well. So make sure you tune in for that next week on Up Front. I want to thank our sponsors; Atlantic Bay Mortgage, Cabarrus Arena and Events Center, Cabarrus Eye Center, CERTEC Automotive, Code Ninjas, Concord Downtown Development Corporation, Family Wealth Partners, Merle Norman Cosmetics and Edie's Salon and Your CBD Store of Concord. I've been your host, Jason Huddle, saying, it's a seller's market, ya'll.

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