Now that we've had a couple of days for members of our Great Smoky Mountains Association of Realtors to report May sales the picture is clearing a little. May sales will likely continue to dribble in but at this point we can already declare that the pace of sales has significantly improved. Total residential sales reported for May are currently at 140 units. This is the best performance our Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge/Sevierville real estate market has had since of October of 2007's 159 units sold. As I said in a recent post, one month does not constitute a trend but it does appear that the worst may be over (we hope!!).
Not a bit too soon either for those of us in the Sevier County real estate business. I know of several business owners who have had to borrow against their home's equity or from retirement savings to keep their business's doors open during the last year. Other real estate companies have failed or are in the process of closing their doors. From surveyors to appraisors, from builders to realtors we are ALL ready for some relief from the deep valley through which we have trod recently.
Our own business continues to be good but sadly many of the properties we are seeing sell are foreclosure properties that the banks are often willing to nearly give away. While these sales have kept us in the black it is very unpleasant to have to tell someone, as I did again today in Pigeon Forge, that they are going to have to quickly find new accommodations because their lender has completed the foreclosure process and they are no longer the owners of the real estate they have lived in. No longer their home, it is now simply the bank's real estate.
If you are interested in a great opportunity to purchase Gatlinburg area real estate for less (sometimes MUCH less) than it sold for previously please contact me.