Twin Cities home sales numbers for 2014 won't be released until next Wednesday, but there's no doubt sales fell short of 2013 because of the exodus of investors who don't live in the properties they buy, which is seen as a good thing for the long-term stability of the market.
We asked Michael Hoffman, the incoming president of the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors, and David Arbit, MAAR's research manager, what they think 2015 will be like.
"With the exception of mortgage rates, which were lower last year, all indications are as strong or stronger than last year," said Hoffman, who succeeds Emily Green of Sandy Green Realty as the association's president. Hoffman was a longtime vice president of business development for Coldwell Banker Burnet and still holds a license with CBB, but is no longer actively working with buyers and sellers. In 2008 he started FlightPlan, a business consulting and training firm that works with real estate agents, entrepreneurs and other small business in the Twin Cities metro.
Though reluctant to make any firm predictions, Arbit said he expects sales in the 13-county metro will be 4 to 7 percent higher than last year, and the median price of those sales will post gains of about 5 to 8 percent.
Hoffman, by the way, said recent subzero temperatures haven't put the market in a deep freeze.
"There's no evidence this has been a deterrent for buyers," he said.