Every week, we ask a Houston real estate professional for their thoughts on the top three stories from the week before.
This week, we talked with Realtor Jeff Whitespeare with Rene Sorola Properties at Keller Williams in the Houston area. He studied at Northwood University and completed his degree at the University of Texas. So far this year, he has reached a sales volume of $6,500,000 and is very close to completing his goal of $7,500,000. Whitespeare is proud to be a part of Rene Sorola Properties, which is the 17th ranked real estate team, according to the Houston Business Journal.
Houston Agent (HA): How will the government shutdown impact the housing market?
Jeff Whitespeare (JW): Government shutdown will only make buyers and sellers a little more cautious before either buying or selling. FHA loans have been very attractive to first time home buyers over the last three to five years because of the low down payment. If those first-time homebuyers can’t proceed, due to the government shutting down, then the people they are trying to buy from can’t move on either, and that ripple effect impacts the entire industry. I see this being only a temporary shutdown, with little effects on the real estate market.
HA: It has been reported that first-time homebuyers have been missing in action. Are you noticing this trend in your area as well? Why or why not?
JW: I wouldn’t say they’ve been missing in action. I’ve helped quite a few first-time homebuyers here recently and it has been a large part of my business. With the “more experienced” homebuyers who have purchased before noticing these attractive interest rates, it has given them the opportunity to upgrade their homes and sell their current homes.
I would say there are more of these types of buyers in the market, so as of now there’s no better time to sell. With the sellers realizing they can get top dollar for their homes, they are deciding to sell and put their family in larger homes. Overall, there are definitely more buyers in the market who have purchased before, but I am still seeing a lot of first time home buyers in today’s market.
HA: Houston has one of the busiest housing markets in the nation. Why do you think that is?
JW: Houston is the place to be! The job growth is fueling this real estate market to new extremes. Along with the amount of time these interests rates have been low and the ever expanding job market in Houston, real estate is hot! Large companies like Exxon, Chevron, BP, etc. expanding and growing here in Houston has a direct reflection of the amount of people moving here, which in turn makes the home buying process a lot more intriguing.
Being a top producing agent in this Houston real estate market is great and helping buyers and sellers make new investments is a great feeling to have. If you’re not already investing in Houston real estate, the time is now!