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Rockford area real estate market experiencing low inventory, bidding wars

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ROCKFORD (WREX) — June is traditionally the busiest month of the year for realtors. It's when most homes sell.

But low inventory and high prices create a phenomenon realtors say they've never seen.

"Ive been doing this 39 years in the fall and I've never seen a market like this," Jean Crosby with Crosby Starck Real Estate says.

Inventory is at it's lowest point in decades.

"We have 436 listings and typically we have around 1,500," Crosby says.

That means prices are up and it's a seller's market in the Rockford region.

"Rolling averages for the past three months have gone up and it's breaking new records," Justin Smith, a Century 21 realtor, says.

According to data from the Rockford Area Realtors, year over year, the average price for homes sold is up $20,000, creating a tight market for potential buyers.

"We've had as many as 27 offers on the same property for presentation within 24 hours," Crosby recalls.

"It just means you have to be motivated [and] you have to prepare mentally to be in competition," Smith says.

Crosby and Smith say, historically, low interest rates are enticing for first time home buyers, who make up the majority of home buyers in the region. But low inventory and bidding wars are causing frustrations.

"Those that are considering purchasing should see if they can get prequalified," Smith reminds.

But Crosby says this market trend won't last forever.

"We are going to see a reversal — how swift and how fast it comes? I don't know," Crosby says.

Smith guesses in the next six to 12 months.

And neither Crosby nor Smith believe there will be an influx of houses on the market, but rather a gradual increase as we return to normal from the pandemic.

"Buyers are more comfortable walking through homes then they were a year ago," Crosby explains.

It's an already fast-paced market with steep competition and the new normal continues to sink in.

As for where the market is headed, according to Rockford Area Realtors, mortgage rates are forecast to continue to rise, which may spur even more demand.

Richard Bodee

Richard Bodee is a reporter at WREX. He joined the 13 WREX team in June 2019 after graduating from DePaul University with a Master’s degree in broadcast journalism.

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