SHAKER HEIGHTS, OH (WOIO) - The housing market in Northeast Ohio is sizzling. Realtors are predicting a busy summer and fall.
For any buyers right now, realtors say expect tough competition with other buyers.
It's a sellers' market meaning there's not enough homes to meet demand. That can quickly drive up the price of the house that grabs your attention.
"Buyers know that when they find a house they have to act on it, and they have to act on it quickly and smartly," said realtor Teri Chmielewski with the Teri Chmielewski Team at Keller Williams Realty.
Chmielewski has seen an uptick in first-time buyers and move-up buyers- those looking for more space and all the bells and whistles.
"With the interest rates as low as they are people are able to buy much more of a home then they would have been able to a couple of years ago," Chmielewski said.
She said the journey should begin with getting a mortgage pre-approval. Chmielewski stressed local lenders often work best because they have local knowledge, can often get applicants through the process more efficiently and with a more individualized touch.
"And once they discuss with the lender what they want to spend (and) what they're able to spend then we direct them to the proper homes," Chmielewski said.
Realtors said it's important for buyers to know their budget and stick to it.
"So that a house enhances your life and doesn't make it harder," Chmielewski said. "We do recommend that our buyers do not make any big purchases once they've decided to buy a home. Don't get a new car. Don't go out and buy furniture. Just keep your finances very clear."
It's also a good idea to ask friends, family members and neighbors for recommendations on good realtors.
"And then sign an agreement, a buyer's agreement, so that way they have your back always," Chmielewski said.
Lastly, be sure to have clear and honest communication with your realtor. Chmielewski said it's important for buyers to visit numerous home to get a feel for what are must haves and where there's room for compromise.
When all the hard work is done, and buyers seal the deal- it's a celebration.
"Some people bring their whole family (and) other people re very quiet about it, but it's an amazing end to a journey," Chmielewski said.