All over Madison County, there are For Sale signs in front of houses. In many cases, as quickly as they go up, buyers purchase the property. A new homeowner, DeLayna Shepard, said she looked at about 20 houses before closing the deal.
"I would find one and say, okay this one looks good. Then Sha [the Realtor] would say let's go look at a few more. Then I would say, 'Okay, I want to put in an offer in this one.' She'd look in her phone and pull everything out then go, 'There is already five offers in on it,'" said Shepard.
Shepard said she got into a bidding war for the property she decided to purchase.
"We were just countering back and forth. Give me your highest, best offer, give me what you've got. I made my highest and best offer and was very fortunate she chose me," said Shepard.
A Realtor, Sha Jarboe, explained, it is currently a sellers market. A big part of that has to do with all the new businesses coming to town, including the $1.6 billion Mazda Toyota plant, the $750 million Facebook data center and the major FBI expansion at Redstone Arsenal that will bring hundreds of jobs to the Army post in Huntsville.
"These really pushed those growth numbers really big for us. We've seen quite an average of more people moving in week after week in our area," said Realtor, Sha Jarboe.
According to the Huntsville Area Association of Realtors, 2018 broke the record for home sales despite a 15-year low in inventory. Residential real estate in Madison County experienced an amazing year with $1.75 billion in total sales up from $1.5 billion in 2017. Realtors sold more than 7,600 properties with an average 57 days on the market.
First-time home buyers, Danielle and Fredrick Jennings, said they acted fast when they found a home they loved.
"I think the main thing was once we found a house we really liked, we didn't want to lose it to other house buyers," said Jennings.
If you are looking for a house, Realtors say first you should pull your credit report and check your score. Then review your budget, get pre-approved and beef up your down payment. Realtors told WAAY 31 those are just a few important steps that will help you in this aggressive market.
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