2021 is promising to be a good year for buyers and sellers. Homes in South Alabama have been selling at record prices and selling quickly because of historically low mortgage rates and the availability of affordable properties. The average price home’s average days on the market are 2 to 7 days, and the average sale price is $130,000.
The COVID-19 Pandemic doesn’t seem to have slowed down people’s movement or the sale of homes. Internet shopping, virtual home tours, and safety precautions like masking and sanitizing have helped keep the market moving. Also, the fact that many people work from their homes has made moving to rural areas more inviting.
Moderately priced homes, milder weather, and family ties bring buyers from all parts of the United States to Alabama, and one time residents are coming back home. According to Forbes.com (Residents Pay The Lowest Property Taxes In These States, Brenda Richardson, Apr 9, 2020), Alabama is one of the states with the lowest effective property tax rates, and housing is one factor for Alabama’s cost of living to be less expensive. Plus, all homeowners age 65 or older are exempt from state property taxes. Seniors with a net taxable income of $12,000 or less on their combined (taxpayer and spouse) federal income tax return are exempt from all property taxes on their principal residence.
Alabama is also one of 37 states that fully exempt Social Security from income taxes and payments from traditional pension plans. There’s no tax on income from the federal government, certain Alabama State and local government, or military retirement plans.
What does this mean to you if you are considering selling your home? Use a REALTOR© to market your property. You will get instant access through their multiple listing service (MLS) to thousands of local REALTORS© who are searching for homes for their clients, and also to millions of customers who are searching on the internet to relocate to your area. Selling as “For Sale By Owner” offers a limited market to websites that only cater to customers looking for a ‘good deal.’
It would be best if you decided where you will go and what you are going to do. Make sure before you jump that you have a safe place to land. Check your credit to make sure you can purchase another property. Investigate the market where you want to move. Most importantly, find a REALTOR© in that area that can help you from a distance until you can see the property in person. Sometimes you can make an offer pending your approval and always pending a professional inspection.
What should you do if you are looking to purchase a home? First, you should get pre-qualified for a loan.
This doesn’t cost you anything but a little time. Find a lender who will look at your income and expenses, run a quick credit report, and ask for a pre-approval letter. This letter will be needed when you make the offer on the home you want to purchase.
Don’t rely just on internet websites to check your credit. Lenders have a unique formula they use for home lending. Searching on the internet is good, but it is better to find a local REALTOR© to help you look for properties. They have immediate and accurate access to properties on the market, and they can often advise you, offering strategies to help you win that home. Make 2021 a great year, the year that you find your dream home, or move to a new location and begin a new adventure.
At Azalea Real Estate Agency, our experienced and knowledgeable REALTORS© can help you from start to finish. You can search the local MLS listings at our website at www.azalearealestate.us or contact us at 251-865-4266 for more information on homes and land in Mobile County.
©Aleta Boudreaux, 2020