Competitive Lowcountry housing market shows no signs of slowing

VIDEO: Competitive Lowcountry housing market shows no signs of slowing

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - The Charleston area’s real estate market has been a roller coaster during 2020 with record lows at the start of the pandemic. But a strong rebound has experts saying it’s more competitive now than ever to buy a home.

When selling her home, Lori Epps said she was shocked by how fast offers flew in.

“I knew it was going to go fast but I had no idea it would be before the for-sale sign got on the front yard and within five minutes of it hitting the market,” Epps said.

Experts say it’s in part because of a strong housing market that has not only recovered to pre-pandemic numbers but also exceeded Lowcountry sales in past years.

The median sale price of a single-family home in Charleston in September was up by 20 percent since 2019 from $370,973 to $445,000, according to the Charleston Trident Association of Realtors

The association’s president and realtor herself, Bobette Fisher, said it’s a good sign for sellers.

“When Covid first hit we weren’t sure what to anticipate and that was the bottom of the market,” Fisher said. “Since that time, we have done nothing but expand our market.”

With more homes selling at higher prices, Fisher says it’s getting more competitive and there are not enough homes to meet the high demand.

“Right now, we just don’t see a slowdown,” Fisher said. “We need an additional 10,000 listings to achieve a balanced market and that’s significant.”

Charlie Smith owner of CSA Real Estate Services in West Ashley said this year has been the best in nearly a decade in terms of how many properties he has sold. However, Smith said a market like this makes it harder to find affordable listings, especially for buyers who have been financially impacted by the pandemic.

“The housing market is very good for those who can afford to invest into the housing market right now,” Smith said. “The housing affordability for people who cannot afford to invest in the housing market right now, that’s a problem.”

More information on local housing market reports can be found here.

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