H-SAN LUIS OBISPO

Jul 15, 2013 8:50 PM by Cameron Polom, KSBY News

Sellers may have the upper hand in the SLO housing market

Living on the Central Coast has its perks, from the coast, to wine tasting, to the rolling hills we hike through. But do we have the homes to support those who want to move here?

Shelpa Patel is on the hunt.

She lives in Morro Bay but is looking to buy a home closer to her work; however, finding the one she wants could be difficult.

"The biggest challenge we have in this market is a lack of inventory in San Luis proper. There's less than two months of inventory," said Wes Burke, Owner of Patterson Realty in San Luis Obispo.

As that inventory continues to become even leaner, the chances of Patel running into some stiff competition for a home she likes only increases.

Low interest rates and affordable housing are making it a great time for first time home buyers to get their hands on the keys to a new home; however, buyers with cash tend to steal the deal.

"The fact of the matter is sellers prefer all-cash buyers, and the reality is it's because they have a much higher closing ratio," said Burke.

He says buyers need to be ready to make multiple offers on a listing. He also suggests having back up options if the home you like doesn't end up in your hands.

Sellers on the other hand seem to have the ball in their court.

"We're seeing most of the entry level inventory is selling above asking price," said Burke.

He adds, as housing prices increase, many sellers will hold onto property until an offer reaches their full expectations.

As for Patel, persistency is the name of the game.

"It can be discouraging at times but I'm very hopeful about finding something around town in this neighborhood," she said.

According to Patterson Realty, there are more homes available in northern San Luis Obispo County than in the city of San Luis Obispo.

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