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 Sherry Palermo of Zann Commercial Brokerage in Houston. Palermo has been in the real estate industry for five years, working in both the commercial and residential side. Prior to that, she worked with investors on purchasing real estate for their portfolios.
Houston Agent (HA): In your opinion, can agents live without the MLS? Why or why not?
Sherry Palermo (SP): No. The MLS provides tools and research to not only educate ourselves, but also our clients. Information that has been provided by a trusted source is invaluable. The data from the MLS is used for real time analysis, which is important to determine current market value for a property. The general searches from the internet does not always provide reliable information and it can be outdated.
HA: What has Houston’s rental market been like for the third quarter? What are your predictions for fourth quarter?
SP: Houston’s commercial real estate market continues to be defined by increased demand for limited office space. Although the vacancy rate has not changed for this quarter, reports show a 0.6 percent increase in rent rates. In addition, Houston will remain a landlord’s market for the foreseeable future as we anticipate higher rent, less space and higher tenant activity. There are several building projects in the Woodlands area as also for the Katy Freeway/Energy Corridor. I think there will be measured growth across all sectors for the real estate market.
HA: There has been a rise in mortgage rates this year. Will it continue to rise?
SP: In recent reports; 67 percent of the panelists believe mortgage rates will rise over the next week or so, 22 percent think rates will fall, and 11 percent believe rates will remain relatively unchanged (plus or minus 2 basis points).