February 2021 Real Estate Market on the OBX

February 2021 Real Estate Market on the OBX

Outer Banks Seller’s Market Continues to Persevere

Winter will soon make way for spring, but there is no end in sight to the strong seller’s market currently dominating the Outer Banks and beyond. Buyers are faced with the trifecta of low inventory, high demand, and low interest rates, which is leading to tight competition and epic frustration. With homes nationwide continuing to sell well above the asking price, buyers are feeling the squeeze in this tight market.

Real Estate Outer Banks. Ocean view from the beach access

Outer Banks Real Estate by the Numbers

The resiliency of the real estate market amid a global pandemic has continued to shock even the most seasoned real estate professionals. Even the months of December, January, and February – our typical “down” times – were booming with activity.

One word in the February 2021 MLS Statistical Report stands out like a sore thumb: inventory. As noted in the report, inventory in the Outer Banks has been on a steady decline since 2019. It reached a fever pitch in April 2020 when the bottom completely dropped out. Residential inventory is showing a reduction of 69 percent, while land inventory has declined by 22 percent. The National Association of Realtors has not yet released its February data. However, January statistics placed the OBX on par with what is happening nationwide with low inventory levels.

Other key data from the report includes:

  • Residential sales are up 68 percent and land/lot sales increased by 100 percent over 2020.
  • Under contracts experienced a 65 percent increase over February 2020.
  • Corolla was the “hot ticket” area, with a 327 percent increase in sales compared with figures for last February. A total of 47 residential properties changed hands in February 2021.
  • All Hatteras was the runner-up for sales, with 36 total properties sold. The figures reflect a 112 percent increase over February 2020.
  • Kill Devil Hills was in hot pursuit, with 38 total properties sold for an increase in sales over last February of 81 percent.
  • Ocracoke Island continued its trend for the lowest number of sales, with only 3 properties changing hands in February 2021. This is due to the lack of available inventory that has plagued the island for nearly a year.

Tips for buyers in a seller’s market

Sellers are in their glory these days with multiple offers – most coming in well above the asking price. It has left buyers exasperated as they navigate through the slim pickings. Here are some helpful tips to help improve the chances your offer will be accepted.

  • Offer the highest and best price within your budget. Bidding up to $20,000 over the asking price is not going to make that much difference in a monthly mortgage payment. It can mean the difference between having your offer accepted or rejected for one that is better.
  • Remove contingencies that can slow things down. This can include covering the appraisal gap and pre-signing property disclosures.
  • Get pre-approval from lenders. Having pre-approval not only helps you know how much you can offer on a property but also encourages sellers to choose your offer over others.

Always work with experienced and assertive real estate professionals who can guide you through the process. Whether you are buying or selling, reach out to us today for assistance to ensure a smoother process.