FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA21) — America’s hottest — and most unexpected — real estate market in the country right now is Fort Wayne.
The distinction may have come as a surprise to the rest of the country, but not to realtors, buyers, and sellers in the Summit City.
“If you put a home on the market that is priced right and been cared for well, it can experience 20-30 showings in the first 24 to 48 hours, and it’s not uncommon to receive multiple offers on those homes,” Beth Walker says,
Walker of Fairfield Group Realtors also serves as president of the Upstate Alliance of Realtors.
She says she’s not surprised Fort Wayne was named the country’s hottest housing market.
“Fort Wayne has gotten a lot of attention and a lot of buzz in recent years, partly because of all the development happening in the community, downtown as well as out in the community. Partly because of the affordability of the market, and us being within two to three hours of seven major cities. We just have a lot going for us here,” she says.
She says the inventory of homes is almost non-existent, which is why developments are springing up all over town, and existing homes often fetch more than the asking price.
“Between $100 and $200,000, that’s what I would call kind of a starter median kind of price range, today there are only 137 houses for sale in our MLS in that price range. And that’s extremely low in a city of over 250,000 people,” she says.
Experts say people moving here because of the cheaper cost of living, plus moving out of mom and dad’s house, are contributing to the boom.
But in order for people to afford that $100-$200,000 price point, developer Matt Lancia says we may see a trend towards attached villas or duplexes.
“The density will become higher in those kinds of projects which should help bring down the costs of basically the home site,” he says.
He says he doesn’t see the hot housing market cooling off any time soon.
“I don’t know what’s going to flip the switch and make it go the other way. Our home inventory is so low in Fort Wayne right now that besides a catastrophic event, I don’t see how it would stop immediately,” he says,
If you plan to sell your home soon, Walker suggests you either make an offer on something else first, or have a backup plan like an apartment to rent in the short term until you buy another home.
Lancia tells us another reason prices of new homes are inching higher is because building costs have risen about 30% over the past four years.
That includes costs for materials, labor, and empty lots.