EUGENE, Ore. -- A bottomed out real estate market in Lane County coupled with an increase in demand from home buyers has tipped the housing market in favor of sellers and builders.
Kelly Ritz, the president of Stone Bridge Homes NW, recently sold a model home in southwest Eugene. She said that the shift has been in the works for quite some time.
"Everything has been very slow for a while. In fact, if you look at the Eugene market and Lane County, there are about 600 homes on the market right now ... only 35 of those are new,” Ritz told KVAL News, before opening the doors to the model home for Stone Bridge Homes NW.
In just under two weeks, the Regional Market Listing Service recorded a market shift in the Eugene. With 500 homes on the books, 42 of them are listed as new home construction projects.
"The rest of them are used. They're existing, they're foreclosed, they're short sales. It's the existing inventory from 1902 until the crash of 2006.” said Ritz as she lead KVAL's Ty Steele on a tour through the kitchen of the model home. Ritz has sold nine Stone Bridge Homes sold in the Timberline Hills of southwest Eugene.
That is the year Ritz said her company slowed down home building and focused on surviving the Recession. But now she said the market has bottomed out and is just reaching a tipping point for sellers and builders.
“I think I have the belief that things are going to get better,” said Ritz.
As the housing market starts to rebound, home prices have started to rise. The median sale price for a home in Lane County so far this year listed by the Regional Market Listing Service is $177,000. Last year’s median sale price for the same time period was $174,900.
Prudential residential broker Marcia Edwards said this market trend is good news for real estate agents and home builders.
"We're shifting from a buyer's market, where's there's abundant opportunity and supply and little demand with all the opportunities in the world as a buyer, to a seller's market,” said Edwards, gesturing to a home she just sold on Vista Heights Lane in southwest Eugene.
Even with median home sale prices now on the rise, Edwards said low interest rates and flexible lending still makes it a good time to buy. Edwards added that the market has just begun this shift.
“As we see more people buying homes, putting more sub contractors to work, paying more fees to cities and counties, it all helps the economy,” said Ritz. “So, I think we're on our way up."