Over the past couple of years, the housing market across the United States has been operating at all time highs because of factors such as historically low mortgage rates, low inventory due to homeowners staying in place due to the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic, and a surge of interest in single family homes due to a rise in work from home arrangements.
With the availability of coronavirus vaccines, new inventory is coming to the market, however,HomeLight notes in their Top Agent Insights for End of Year 2021 report that the housing market is still favorable for sellers because 46% of agents report that homebuyers have accrued significant amounts of savings from not traveling, dining out, or engaging in other social activities.
Agents are also still optimistic about the future with 95% of agents reporting that market conditions nationwide are great for sellers, which is much more than Q3 2019 when only 55% of agents reported seller market conditions.
If you’re looking to take advantage of these trends and put your home on the market you’ll want to consider the following information.
Leverage outdoor spaces
Now that many individuals and families are choosing to spend more time at home, it’s important to invest in providing a great outdoor experience to pique the interest of buyers. A popular way to do this is by installing a full-fledged outdoor fireplace in the backyard.
HomeLight found that 65% of agents report that buyer interest in outdoor fireplaces has increased since March 2020. As to whether you should install a gas or wood-burning fireplace, 48% of agents nationally advise to purchase a gas fireplace, while 44% advise to go with wood burning. Ultimately, every market is different so it’s important to speak with a realtor or other real estate professional that is familiar with your locale.
Consider installing an accessory dwelling unit
The coronavirus pandemic has caused many families to express concerns over the safety of nursing homes, which is causing a rise in multi-generational living opportunities and demand for accessory dwelling units (ADUs). 61% of agents report that ADUs are commonly used to house parents in their region, 35% report housing adult children that need temporary housing for financial reasons, and 32% of agents report that ADUs are commonly used for short-term rentals in their territory.
ADUs come in a variety of shapes and sizes. The most popular (cited by over a third of agents) is a detached structure that shares no walls with the property. Other homeowners (24%) have an ADU with at least one wall that is attached to the main property, or a converted basement/attic or interior setting (20%), or a converted garage (16%).
On average, adding an ADU to a property increases its value by $65,908, however, they typically cost $77,329 to construct. As with many other aspects of selling a home, exact costs and values depend on the market, so depending on where you’re located, an ADU might be a profitable investment.