With all of the bad news about, there are certainly reasons for Americans to be concerned. The COVID-19 pandemic and the economic downturn it is creating are without a doubt the two biggest challenges, but they are not the only reasons to be on edge. Although amazingly low oil prices are a welcome relief for consumers, they have served to put our US oil industry into a turmoil that will almost certainly lead to the loss of some companies and the consolidation of others in that business. On the vacation resort community side of the fence, the decades low oil prices are a good thing for us here in Sevier County. Don’t know what your gas prices look like but here in Sevierville today they look like this:
No, those photos aren’t an April Fools’ joke. They really are selling gasoline at multiple locations for under $1.30/gallon. Not sure how long this can last but like everybody else I’m going to make sure that all of our vehicles are fully fueled.
Mortgage rates are also at historic lows, and that is without a doubt good news for real estate. We got our initial look at Smoky Mountain residential real estate sales today and although the number isn’t good, it never is on the very first day of the month. Most agents and agencies don’t get their last day of the month closings posted to the MLS for a couple of days so this quick number is always very preliminary. With the pandemic, more agents may have time to update the MLS database so the increase may not be as much as normal, but we will need to wait and see just how many additional sales are recorded. Here is the VERY preliminary report:
In coming months, there will almost undoubtedly be some slowing of our market as social distancing requirements make it very difficult to show real estate. Also, many buyers are understandably anxious about making a major decision at this time. Given the lack of inventory supply that we have had for some time, this may well serve to make our market a little more balanced. Better times are ahead, but you may not want to wait until everyone sees the clearer skies. By then the prices will be up again…