2014 expected to be happy new year for real estate

December 20, 2013 

Assuming flood insurance doesn’t become a major problem locally, Laura Crowther said she’s looking at 2014 as another good year for the area’s real estate market.

Prices and the number of sales are up, and she’s not too worried about new federal rules for mortgage creditworthiness. The latter, she said, will depend on how banks interpret it.

“Even though we think interest rates are going to go up,” said Crowther, CEO of the Coastal Carolinas Association of Realtors, “they are still at amazing lows compared to what it’s been in the past.”

The modest price gains seen this year could spur more purchases as those who were still waiting for the market low would see the increase and realize they need to buy their homes soon, she said.

The National Association of Realtors reports that South Carolina is among a handful of states where prices are likely to rise more than the national 4 percent average gain expected for 2014. In South Carolina and other states, prices could increase by as much as 8 percent, the national association said.

Crowther said that the sales of distressed homes along the Grand Strand continues to decline, which has been a major factor in the area’s real estate price increases this year.

She said that the supply of available homes is good, and noted the amount of home building in the area to satisfy a reawakened demand.

Contact STEVE JONES at 444-1765.

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