Well, I guess by now you have all heard the bad news, so with 2009 coming up, I've decided to focus on THE GOOD NEWS.Here are 10 reasonswhy I think 2009 will be a good time to buy Real Estate in Litchfield County.
1) Little Speculative Building. The really devastated real estate markets are in areas where there was rampant speculative over development. We do not have that problem here. There has been very little speculative building in the last year. This will serve to lower theinventory of new construction comingon the market as we work through the current inventory.
2) Conservation. There is so much conserved land int his area, that the possibility of major subdivision or excessive inventory build up of new homes, is always lower than in other more developed areas. In addition to the land officially owned by the land trusts, there are thousands more in conservation easements. See my website for more info on conservation easements http://www.staceymatthews.com/AreaInfo/conservation.html
3) Tough Zoning Laws. Bridgewater, Roxbury and Washington have very tough zoning. There are virtually no subdivisionsin the traditional sense of a large cul de sac with homes all built by the same builder. If you are a builder of these homes, I feel safe to say that you should stay away. These towns will not welcome you.
4) Proximity to the City. We remain the only premium weekend area that you can get to in 1 1/2 - 2 hours from the city with virtually no traffic (once you get to the GW bridge). We are the only place that is close and yet has that completely country feel.
5) Low taxes. CT has very low real estate taxes compared to other areas(like anywhere in New York State especially the Hamptons). Washington and Roxbury have two of the lowestMill rates in the state!
6) Economic Stimulus Plans: The amount of money our government is pumping into this economy is staggering, and if that doesn't fix it, Obama seems set on putting in more. Much of this money is aimed directly at the housing market. Today's news is that Obama is considering a corporate tax cut aimed at getting corporations to invest and begin to hire again.
7) Interest Rates Fall Sharply. Interest rates are near 50 year lows. Do I need to say more?? Applications to buy and refinance homes doubled and tripled respectively last month. People are going to be saving a lot of money after refinancing at these rates.
8) Cheap Oil. This is also putting a lot more money into consumers pockets. Hopefully as this stock market stabilizes, consumers will start spending again.
9) Deals. There are GREAT deals to be had, and they won't last forever. We will never know the bottom until we are way above it. I believe the brave who step forward in the next few months will be quite happy with themselves a year from now. When the springstarts to bloom, my experience tells me that sellers get LESS negotiable. The depths of winter is usually the best time to get a deal.
10) Real Estate is Local. While many markets in California and Florida have been killed, this is due to rampant speculative over building. We do not have this kind of problem in this area, and therefore, I do not anticipate our markets will ever godown as much as thoseother areas have. We will remain the preeminent country destination for New Yorkers and many of those who come here will move here full time. I anticipate that as the stock market stabilizes and volatilitydeclines, the buyers who have been looking for the last year will be coming in with offers. To most we are still an undiscovered area, and there is plenty of room for upside as more people tire of the Hamptons.