If you are anything like us, you have burning questions that you want answered. That’s what the Ask the Expert series is all about – it’s a chance to get questions answered by local experts.

Today, we’re turning to our friend Lindsay Thiel, a full-time Realtor with Ruhl&Ruhl Realtors in Iowa and Illinois (and mom of two boys – with a daughter on the way). She’s sharing the full scoop about the real estate market in the Quad Cities. (And, hint: It’s booming.)

If you have been house hunting or thinking of selling your own home in the Quad Cities, here’s what you need to know.

Now’s the time.

The first half of 2017 saw a record number of homes sold and closed in the region. That means now is a wonderful time to buy and sell. 

“The real estate market this year has been strong and busy,” Lindsay explains.

And while homes are closing fast, the number of the listings in the Quad Cities has been lower than the past 17 years. That means demand is high.

Home prices are going up.

As demand increases, prices will continue to rise. And this year did see increased home prices throughout the Quad Cities area. But while home prices are appreciating, homes in the region are also some of the most affordable in the country.

And when all signs point to a seller’s market, Lindsay explains that “a buyer needs to be ready to buy when they find ‘the one.'”

Here are a few suggestions to do that:

  • Get pre-approved with a good mortgage company or local bank.
  • Enlist a buyers agent to find the best options.
  • Be prepared to make a fair offer – low ball offers aren’t going to work in a sellers market!

Get your home ready to sell.

There are plenty of things to do as a seller to make your home more attractive as well. For those looking to sell, you can focus on a few key areas to get the most demand – Lindsay finds that renovated kitchens and bathrooms are particularly sought after. 

Other recommendations for sellers for a fast offer include:

  • Fresh paint
  • Clean carpet.
  • Tidy landscaping.
  • Deferred maintenance items.
  • Declutter and depersonalize

“A buyer and their agent will notice those things,” Lindsay explains. “A home inspection will reveal anything you try to hide, even in a sellers market.”

Related: 6 tips to a cleaner house with kids at home.

Low interest rates make buying a home more affordable than ever.

Mortgage rates continue to be low – making home buying much more attractive to families in the Quad Cities – both first time home buyers and those who are looking to relocate or find a larger home.

Low interest rates can help homeowners get more house for the same monthly payment. 

“Interest rates continue to be low,” Lindsay says. “And there are many home buyer programs that buyers can still take advantage of.”

To begin, she recommends talking to a mortgage professional to determine how much home you can afford and what costs will be associated with the loan.

Ruhl&Ruhl can help sell – or find – your dream home.

Lindsay and our friends at Ruhl&Ruhl can help you sell your current home, find your next home and finance your dreams. Tap into the Quad City experts in all things home – check online to see all homes for sale right here in the Quad Cities.

Disclosure: Thanks to the Ruhl&Ruhl for sponsoring today’s post. We at QCMB love working with our favorite local businesses to share useful information and make our community a better place to live, work and play.

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