Triangle's red-hot real estate bad news for homebuyers

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It's a seller's market in Raleigh, so buyers are advised to be patient.

Realtors are warning buyers looking for a home in the Triangle to be patient and leave your emotions at the door.

With high demand and inventory on a steady decline, it is a seller's market.

In 2015, the number of closings was up about 9 percent over the previous year, but inventory of homes for sale decreased more than 15 percent.

Thomas Wohl, RE/MAX Preferred Realtor, has been in the real estate industry for 22 years. He told ABC11 he's never seen a seller's market like this; one of his buyers offered more than 5 percent over the asking price for a home in North Hills, but were outbid.

He said it's common to see up to a dozen buyers make offers well over the asking price for a home that oftentimes needs major repairs.

"People are willing to knowingly overpay for the right location," he said. "Sellers, these days, don't make repairs. They don't take care of their home, barely stage their home because they know they can sell it no matter what."

Melinda Bilcheck of Raleigh is looking to downsize. She was one of several interested buyers swarming a North Raleigh home Friday on the first day it was open for showings.

"I have my median price range I'd like to stay at, but am I willing to go above that? Yes," she said without hesitation.

Wohl said he fears the housing market is headed for a bubble. He explained appreciation is based on both demand and improvements to the home, but sellers are realizing little to no improvements are necessary.

"So if you have a house that hasn't been improved, the only thing you're counting on is a demand," Wohl said of a buyer who overpays. "You only have half of what it takes to make it a stable market. So it's only a demand and supply. At some point it will turn the other way."

His advice to buyers is to be patient, do your research, and don't make an emotional decision.

"I'm seeing across the board that houses don't have the right backyard, don't have the right kitchen, they're a little bit noisy in the back because it backs up to the road, people are still overpaying for it," Wohl said. "And to me, when the market goes off, they're not going to be very happy with the results."

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