They are definitely serious buyers. Some have gone through the mortgage pre-approval process and some are planning on doing so in the near future.
Yet, I have been told by quite a few potential buyers that they are planning to buy in the "spring". While there are some very good reasons to buy in the spring when the weather is generally more agreeable, there are certainly some very good reasons to act now.
For one thing, the Northern Virginia area is experiencing high demand for housing coupled with a limited supply of properties. New household formations, delayed household formations during the Great Recession, a strong job market, are some of the reasons for the increased demand.
Lack of building during the "Great Recession" is one reason for lack of supply. In addition, some studies have shown that many retirees are electing to "stay put" in their homes as opposed to selling and downsizing.
Lack of inventory is a great reason to act now if purchasing a home in 2014.
The potential for rising interest rates is another good reason to act in the near future. The monthly mortgage payment is the "true cost" of owning a home. As interest rates rise, the cost to own a home increases. If acting now can save hundreds of dollars a month in mortgage interest payments, it only makes sense to buy now!
Happy New Year and call me to get the ball rolling on your next home sale or home purchase. Its a great time to buy and sell!
PS Photo is a courtesy of freedigitalphotos.com