Hot housing market sees a slight cooldown, but remains competitive

MANDEVILLE, La. (WVUE) – There is a slight shift happening in the housing market. Realtors on the North Shore report a lot of homes returning to the market with reduced pricing, homes under $300k returning to the market due to insurance issues, and fewer people buying due to rising interest and mortgage rates.

“I have read these articles and I’ve been waiting for this for a very, very long time but I don’t see it today,” said Barry Gurievsky, a realtor with Berkshire Hathaway. “Certainly we can anticipate it coming, rates have gone up substantially. However the market [crashing]… I don’t see it, there are still more buyers than sellers.”

Gurievsky believes it’s still very much a seller’s market, with buyers having a difficult time finding a house. “And when they do, oftentimes they’re competing,” he said.

“Often times these same buyers are paying several thousand dollars over full price,” he said. “We’re seeing a lot more cash buyers and those putting a substantial down payment on their homes vs. financing.”

He said in the last several years since the pandemic began, the housing market has been strong on the seller side.

But the shift that the market might be cooling down is ever so slight.

“Before it was like you had to buy it and make a decision within a day,” said Lisa Martinez, a realtor with ReMax. “So I think it is going to correct itself and it’s going to take a little while to do that, but I’m starting to see a turn in the market and it’s not as much as the seller’s market anymore.”

With rising interest rates and ongoing insurance issues, Martinez said it’s turning out to be not much of a buyer’s market either as some buyers are choosing to press the pause button.

“If they can get insurance it’s super expensive and that creates a lot of problems when it adds to that note every month,” she said.

Gurievsky said mortgage rates have increased from 3-3.5 percent to a near 5.5-6 percent range for a 30-year mortgage, something that will affect what someone can afford when buying a house. He said the market changes are slow to change.

For real estate from the North Shore to the south shore, the market is still very strong, but the surge may be running out of steam.

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, many would-be homebuyers are applying for fewer loans. Mortgage purchase applications were down 16 percent compared to 2021 due to the rapid jump in rates.

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