NJ Housing Market Has Banner Year, Good For Buyers

With the slow economic recovery and the headline-grabbing fury of Superstorm Sandy, many people might expect that the housing market in New Jersey would be at a standstill. But it turns out the opposite is the case: drawing on stats from the Commerce Department, the NJ Star-Ledger declared that 2012 was the best year for new home construction since 2008, and that the record number of homes for sale in NJcomes at a very good time for potential buyers.

New Construction

The total number of new houses begun in 2012 was nearly 1 million, which is an increase of nearly 200,000 from the year before. A good chunk of those starts were in December, helping push 2012 to pre-recession levels for the first time since the housing bubble.

Of course, many people worry about the effect that Hurricane Sandy had on all this new construction. The number of building permits requested for the new year has dipped a bit, indicating a slight slowdown in the construction industry, but overall the new construction has fared well. Most of the state did not receive the intense deluge or flooding that was featured on TV, and partly built houses are typically insured by the construction companies, so that setback cost has been minimal for homeowners.

Good for Buyers

The new homes on the way aren’t only good for the construction industry, although that’s a welcome change. The recovery has fortunate timing, coinciding with historic lows in the cost of borrowing, which makes early 2013 a smart time to consider purchasing a home, whether new or existing. Realtors across New Jersey are seeing renewed interest in the market and many sellers who have waited too long are ready to close at good prices.

At the same time, home values have finally started to nose up. Economic predictors indicate this trend will only gain steam, which to many potential buyers means there’s a limited but lucrative window for those who want to buy low and, someday, sell high. Thus the impetus is not just to buy, but to buy soon – at least for those savvy enough to stay ahead of the value curve.

The word is getting out, though: according to pundits at Wells Fargo’s National Association of Home Builders, buyer confidence is at its highest since early 2006.

A Changing Market

The “slow housing market” has been a buzzword for so many years that it’s practically become scripture. But in New Jersey at least that’s changing, and we can expect to see continued growth. The general strength of Jersey’s economy as well as the high consumer confidence and ideal financing conditions mean that homes for sale in NJare going to be moving faster and faster.

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