Disappearing house: Richmond could become a seller’s market

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RICHMOND, Va (WTVR) -- Some experts see an uptick in the housing market in the Richmond, stemming from job growth in the region and high demand for quality housing.  Real estate agents say home for sale do not stay on the market long.

William Frick and his family sold their two-story home in Hanover only two days after they listed it for sale.

"Two different people came to look at the house on Saturday, and we had an offer Saturday evening," said Frick.

Chris Parks, a mortgage loan officer in Richmond, closely studies trends in the market.

"2008, 2009, and 2010 were pretty rough years for everybody, so I would have to say 2007 when things were starting to slow down was when we saw the volume and speed we are seeing now," Parks said.

Park took CBS 6 took a couple of open houses Sunday afternoon.  Real estate agents at those location said many homes in prime areas of Central Virginia, like Henrico or Chesterfield, sell within a day or two of hitting the market.

Parks said he is not ready to call Richmond a seller's market, but he is inching that way.

"If you price the home correctly, within about one percent of what market says it can bear, you're going to see the house turn quickly and sell very fast," said Parks.

Forbes magazine recently ranked Richmond a top five city in the nation for job production this spring.  Positive economic indicators like job growth, Parks said, has driven demand for quality homes in the region.

A shrinking inventory of quality homes for sale due to high demand has forced some buyers to jump head in.  Parks said many homes have two or three competing offers within days, and in a way, the old days of spending time negotiating offers is gone.

"That's not there anymore.  The time is now if they want to make it happen.  They need to be realistic with their first offer because they may not get a second," said Parks

Parks said seller's had to face the reality their houses wouldn't go for as much as they bought them for due to depreciation during the downturn of a few years ago.

However, it seems many real estate experts in Richmond are optimistic  about the housing market's future.

"I don't have a crystal ball when it comes to that kind of stuff, but I do have to say that things are looking very encouraging," Parks said.