WILMINGTON — Clinton County needs more housing, said Peelle & Lundy Realtors Vice President Robyn Clifton. Peelle & Lundy Realtors Owner Butch Peelle agreed.
“We have a lack of housing in all price ranges,” said Peelle. Homes coming into the market that are priced properly are selling briskly, he said.
Clifton thinks the price range of houses that Clinton County needs the most is between $120,000 and $150,000. Moreover, the median or typical cost of a house selling in the county presently is $147,000, according to her.
The inventory of homes is less than what it’s been in the past, said Peelle. Clifton said there are about a third of the homes on the market today as was the case three years ago.
She knows a lender who has 52 people pre-approved for home loans, but they haven’t found what they’re looking for yet.
Similarly, Peelle mentioned a couple people who have made offers on houses, but a number of other people made offers for the same places.
“When five people make an offer on one home, four people are going to be disappointed,” he noted.
Advised the theme of the News Journal’s 2019 Progress special supplement is “On the Rise”, Peelle remarked, “Well, we’ve [Clinton County] been on the rise for about three years. The only problem is people in Clinton County don’t know it because it’s been a slow, gradual move back up to where we were [prior to the DHL pullout and the Great Recession].”
The average price of homes in Clinton County increased 5 percent in 2017 and 4 percent in 2018, they said.
There also is a shortage of rental properties in Wilmington. During the past three years, said Peelle, it’s been very difficult to find either a house or an apartment to rent.
There are reasons for that, he said.
“There were eight years when people didn’t build houses; they didn’t take risks; they didn’t take chances; they didn’t build apartment buildings. And in that same eight years, we had a lot of high school graduates, a lot of college graduates.
“The rental market is so tight that for every rental [property] we have come available, we have maybe 10 people who want to rent it. So the fact is, it is easier to own a home in town than it is to rent,” said Peelle.
With that in mind, he has sat down with several people who came to Peelle & Lundy Realtors seeking a place to rent and guided them to consider home ownership instead.
If these people expect some day to own a home, Peelle asks them whether there’s any reason they wouldn’t try to do something now if they could find the right home and if no money down is required.
“Because it’s going to be really tough to find something to rent,” he said.
Clifton said there is a no-money down program available for first-time home buyers covering all of Clinton County.
Peelle estimated that 25 to 30 percent of home purchases that the Peelle & Lundy Realtors firm is involved with have no money-down loans.
In general, his advice for first-time home buyers would be to get in touch with a really good realtor who probably can put them in touch with a lender that can be a little more gentle with them.
And if you’re not eligible to buy a home right away for whatever reason, then Peelle recommends you find a lender who’s willing to share things with you so you can buy a home over the next, say, three to nine months.
“Because if you do nothing today, nine months will come and you’ll be no further along than you are today,” said Peelle.
Clinton County, of course, remains centrally located for the big cities of Cincinnati, Columbus and Dayton. “It’s always been a central hub,” commented Clifton.
Peelle followed up and said, “We are so blessed. We’re kind of a magnet, because if you’re in sales or any kind of profession where you need to get on an Interstate quickly — get to one of three primary airports in the state of Ohio quickly within an hour — there’s not anywhere else [in Ohio] you can live except Clinton County to be able to have such access so quickly.”
“We are really blessed. We’re blessed to have an airport [Wilmington Air Park] out here. We’re blessed to have a Wilmington College here. We have so many things that probably 80 other counties in Ohio would love to have. I mean just look around,” added Peelle.
“Just look around,” he reiterated. “The graduates from Wilmington College who continue to stay here. The high school kids who graduate, go away from home because they think that’s what you should do, but then many of them do come back here,” he said.
For more information about the firm and its staff, please visit peelle-lundy.com .