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Housing market is HOT: Homes selling in hours, multiple offers

It's a seller's market. People are paying thousands over the listing price to get their dream home.

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — Homes are being sold before you see the for-sale sign in the yard.

According to Real Estate Information Network Inc (REIN) active inventory on homes in the Hampton Roads market during the month of October is down about 39 percent year-over-year. There are more than 4,800 homes are on the market today compared to about 8,000 last year.

It’s a red-hot real estate market across the United States, especially in Hampton Roads. Low interest rates and little inventory is creating a surge in sales.

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“We put in probably five or six offers on different houses but there are so many offers, it’s just a matter of who is going to win,” Dawn Decker said.

It took more than two months for Decker and her husband Kevin Zingraff to find their dream home in Hampton Roads after getting outbid on several homes. The family is relocating from Richmond.

“We’ve offered to forgo home inspections on a couple of properties just in the hopes of maybe that would sway, and we could get the house that we wanted. We’ve offered above asking price. We’ve gone as far as $10,000 over ask. It still hasn’t worked out for us,” Decker explained.

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The couple even submitted offers on houses they haven’t even seen in person. Forget photographs, their real-estate agent Kit Lockett uses FaceTime.

“The one that checked all the boxes, it was on the market for one day. We saw it as soon as it came on the market. By the time we could get in touch with her, there was already four other offers,” Zingraff explained.

Lockett calls it the season for sellers. She said if you want to sell your home, it’s time to do it, although she expects this hot market to last for a while.

“Not one of us expected this market to go this way,” she explained. “As long as these current conditions are ongoing and these interest rates stay low, which they are predicted to do, I don’t see any change in this market.”

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Forget an appraisal, homes are selling for thousands more. Some homes are even going into a bidding war. 

“Every one house on the market there is on average five to six buyers. It is that crazy,” Lockett explained.

For the Zingraff family, they ended up getting lucky. A seller accepted their offer on a home in Chesapeake. While it was a long and tiring process getting outbid several times, they said the wait was worth it.