ANDERSON – Standing in his new backyard, Adam Souder said his first home is a big improvement over his former rental.
“We have more room than we know what to do with it,” he said.
Souder is one of many new homeowners in the area. Overall, Madison County saw a spike in home sales this month compared to last year, but the number of active listings and home prices were down.
A report released by F.C. Tucker shows seven of the nine counties monitored experienced higher home sale prices for the first six months of 2014, but Madison County was not one of them.
“Low-end properties are selling for cash,” said Sam Johnson, a broker with F.C. Tucker/O.C. Clark Realtors, 309 W 11th St., Anderson. “If you are buying a house for $30,000 that is worth $60,000, you are going to get data skewed that shows property values down.”
Johnson said when properties are selling for $20,000 and $30,000 cash it will drive the average home sales down. Inventory is also down because people have been waiting to sell their property in the hopes the values will return to what a home was worth in 2007.
But now is the time to sell and buy.
“If you sell your home for less, you are going to buy your next property for less,” Johnson said. “You can upgrade because you can buy more now for less money. That means you are going to get a new home, in a better area than what you have now. You are just trading properties and interest rates.”
Johnson said with interest rates at 4 percent, people are paying less in interest than what his parents paid in 1954.
“That’s an incredible interest rate,” he said.
A new homeowner can buy a brick home today for under $80,000 that would have sold for $100,000 in 2007, Johnson said. With a 4 percent interest rate, the average house payment for the home, with real estate taxes and insurance included, is between $500 and $520 a month.