Raleigh, North Carolina, is One of the Best Cities to Buy Real Estate

Have you been pondering buying a home or investing in real estate? Like most people you might be putting off buying real estate because you are leery of the economy, waiting for the stimulus package or heard some negative press.

Well, now is a good time to buy, and the Raleigh area housing market is doing well.

Raleigh, NC, is listed as the 6th healthiest housing market in the US for 2009 according to a recent article in Builder Magazine. This comes as no surprise. The Raleigh-Durham area consistently ranks in the top 10 best US cities to live and is a popular choice for relocating families.

According to the article in Builder Magazine, they analyzed the top 75 housing markets in the country. The article looked at population trends, job growth, home prices and number of building permits to determine the top markets. The article noted what the healthiest housing markets have in common, including close proximity to the ocean, mountains or major universities and no significant increase in the price of homes. The Raleigh area has all these attractive qualities plus the four seasons, a comfortable climate, affordable cost of living, Research Triangle Park (RTP) and more.

The US Census Bureau announced the Raleigh-Cary area as one of the fastest growing metro areas between 2007 and 2008. From July 2007 to July 2008 there was a 4.8 percent increase in population in the Raleigh metro area and most of these people have yet to purchase homes. Additionally, Forbes recently ranked Raleigh as the number one city in the US for job growth.

The Triangle housing market is more stable and steady than the rest of the country. Homes here have not depreciated. According to the Triangle Area Residential Realty (TARR) Report, homes in the Triangle are appreciating between 2 and 4 percent. US homes on average are depreciating at 8.2 percent.

Plenty of homes are selling at their top value in a short time period. For example, a recent search for single family North Raleigh homes on the MLS in the $ 275K to $ 325K range yielded only 73 homes on the market with a median of 54 days on the market. That does not qualify as an oversupply in our marketplace. That is also an indicator of why most of our market areas have appreciated in the past 12 months, not depreciated as most of the nation has.

However, if you are patient, you can find a deal, not a steal. A majority of what is on the market now has been on the market for a while mainly because the initial asking price was too high. These are starting to drop in price.

Interest rates are the lowest they've been in 37 years. If you wait, thinking that you might get a lower price on a home, you may lose in the long run if the rates go up. Whatever, if any, savings in the sales price you may possibly gain would be outweighed by the higher interest rate compounded over a 30 year loan.

When the market starts turning to a sellers market, it will happen quickly. Listings that are properly priced and are in top condition will sell immediately when they hit the market.

Now is a good time to start shopping for a home. Talk with a real estate agent about available listings in the Raleigh area. Contact your mortgage broker to take advantage of the low rates.