It’s no mystery to interested homeowners and Realtors alike that the Lansing housing market is one the rise, and very competitive. The 2018 Lansing real estate market data report shows what many already suspected about the previous year, but also reveals the best places to buy a home in Lansing and still get the home you want. With home prices rising quickly and home sales happening fast, you can still get the home that you’re looking for—if you act fast and look in the right area.
The Best Places to Buy a Home in Lansing According to Real Estate Market Data
Home Values Increasing Across Greater Lansing
The average sales price of homes rose in almost every neighborhood of Greater Lansing, from rural to suburban to urban. This is unsurprising considering the market is booming across the nation, though a few home value increases do stand out. The average home sale price increase across Greater Lansing was 5.4%, however average home sale price increases in Perry, Laingsburg and Grand Ledge topped the list at 29.7%, 13.6%, and 11.5%, respectively.
Contrastingly, total units sold declined or stayed mostly constant in most of Greater Lansing. Areas where home sales increased tended to be areas with lower average home prices. This indicates that buyers may be priced out of some markets, and prioritizing lower prices over amenities. For first-time homeowners, some of the best places to buy a home in Lansing right now are the neighborhoods that are rising in value, but haven't yet priced out homeowners (see Northern Suburbs or City Living section). For move-up buyers in areas where home values are sharply rising, this may mean having enough equity to move into a home in your dream neighborhood.
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Highest Value Areas Priced Out
Three of Greater Lansing’s highest-value real estate markets—Okemos, Haslett, and Williamston—may have reached a temporary price ceiling. Total units sold and average sales prices in these areas stayed relatively constant or declined. This indicates that many homebuyers may be priced out of these markets, especially first-time homebuyers. As more homes are built in these areas, the additional supply of homes may help to balance demand.
Move-up buyers that have seen their home values rise in other areas may have enough equity now to move into these areas. Since other buyers have been priced out, the slight decrease in demand means less competition as your hunt for your dream home. If you have been holding off your move-up buy out of concern for demand in these areas, now may be the time to take the leap.
Homeowners Look to Northern Suburban Communities
Perhaps as a response to the relatively high average home prices of eastside neighborhoods, more homeowners are looking towards Lansing’s and East Lansing’s northern suburbs. Average home values increased for DeWitt, St. Johns and Bath, and these areas were also among the few the see notable rises in total homes sold. Other suburban communities of comparable size to the south did not see rises in total units sold, indicating the northern communities may be particularly attractive.
For buyers looking for their dream home, but not sure about the prices in eastside neighborhoods, these northern suburban communities are the best place to buy a home in Lansing. Buyers will enjoy the peace, quiet and safety of a close community as well as rising home values, without the high initial investment.
Southern Suburban Communities Home Sales Steady
The popularity of the smaller communities to the north might have indicated a preference for Greater Lansing’s suburbs in general, but these home sale increases did not extend to all areas. Similar communities to the south, including Holt-Dimondale, Eaton Rapids, and Mason, as well as Grand Ledge to the west, did not see rises in total homes sold. This may be because these areas impose a slightly longer commute and farther distance from Lansing amenities. However, these areas, like most of the Greater Lansing real estate market, did see rises in average home sales prices.
Some first-time buyers that have saved up for their home may find exactly what they're looking for in these southern suburban communities. With home values rising, but demand holding steady, this may be among the best places to live in Lansing for new homebuyers concerned about competing offers. As demand rises in similar communities to the north, it would be unsurprising to see demand rising in these southern communities soon, so buyers who move quickly will benefit from a less crowded market.
City Living For First-Time Homeowners
As the Lansing real estate market rises, some homeowners are looking towards the city to find more affordable homes. The city of Lansing and Waverly, adjoining to Lansing’s westside, both saw increases in total homes sold as well as average price increases. As two of the most affordable housing markets in Greater Lansing, these areas are particularly desirable for first-time homeowners looking to build equity with a modest downpayment. With many newly renovated homes close to city amenities like shopping centers, restaurants, parks and local events, these areas are ideal for younger couples or singles.
Average home values across Greater Lansing are on the rise, which is great news for homesellers, but is presenting more challenges for prospective homebuyers. Move-up buyers may find the quaint suburbs are some of the best places to live in Lansing, while first-time homebuyers may look closer to the city for their home. Southern suburbs, which have yet to catch up to the simlar neighborhoods towards the north, present opportunities to those who aren't afraid to move quickly. For those who have patiently built equity in areas with rising home values, they may find that the most desirable eastside neighborhoods are now within their reach. For all buyers, two trends are clear for the foreseeable future: home values are on the rise, and so is demand.
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