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Michiana homes in high demand

Homes across Michiana are selling fast.

So fast, some frustrated buyers are starting to ask homeowners if they are willing to put their house on the market.

“It's been very challenging. We've been looking since February. With the housing market right where we're looking at the houses are going very quickly,” Bill and Jeannie Hall explained.

The Halls moved from Florida, hoping to find a home close to their son and two grandchildren.

“We've looked at a total of about 10 to 15 homes already,” Bill Hall said.

In this competitive housing market, they continue to get outbid.

“As soon as they're coming on they're going into pending status. And we've had a couple homes that fell through,” said Jeannie Hall.

Irish Realty Associate Broker Steve Smith said in his 10 years working in real estate, he has never seen the housing market this hot.

“Homes are going incredibly fast. I'd say our average days on market now is 14 days or less. Last Friday night we had a home hit the market 6 pm and by 9 pm it was sold,” Smith explained.

Smith has sold nine homes in 10 days and said the numbers continue to rise.

It is so competitive some of his clients are starting to make some desperate requests.

“They're asking us to send letters to sellers in different neighborhoods where there's no inventory or homes available where they want to live,” said Smith.

Smith said, surprisingly this buyers boom is happening all across St. Joseph County.

“Whether it's a $300,000 home in Granger or an $80,000 home by Washington High school,” he explained.

It is a demand rising across neighboring counties as well.

In Niles, Coldwell Banker is now hiring more agents as a result of increased business.

“Business has been up. Sales have been up 14 percent in Southwest Michigan,” Coldwell Banker Real Estate Agent Cameron Melvoin said.

So why the sudden increase?

Realtors say the boom is because of low interest rates - below 4 percent.

They also say there aren't very many homes on the market.

Realtors added the ‘HGTV Effect' has made an impact. They said now buyers want updated, turnkey homes.

And finally in St. Joseph County, Smith said there has been a decrease in home building.  

“Since about 2006 we've only been building about 150 homes per year in St. Joseph County, compared to 800 or 900 prior to that,” he said.

Realtors said the best advice for house hunters is to download real estate apps to your Smartphone and when you see a property online that you like, you should plan to see that house within 48 hours. 
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