Arkansas is one of the most affordable housing markets in the country. With median property prices at just $126,200, this makes the state a good option for low-income buyers. You also stand the chance of obtaining the best price possible by timing the Arkansas housing market well.
Buying a house is a stressful and emotional process. You'll likely have to spend weeks touring properties, fill out hundreds of forms, and invest a large chunk of your savings to secure the right house.
One way to make buying a house easier is starting the process at the right time. In Arkansas, housing inventory, mortgage rates, and market trends vary from month to month.
For example, this year listing prices for homes in Arkansas were lowest in January. On average, homes were $19,539 less expensive. While in November — the month with the highest prices — the listing prices were $15,041 more than the annual average.
In truth, the best time to buy a house really depends on your priorities and situation. Read on to find out which time of year will give you the most options and the biggest savings when buying a house in Arkansas.
Best Month For
7.0% lower than average
24.0% more homes to choose from
2.92% interest for 30-year mortgage
Realtor.com data (October 2020)
Bankrate data (December 2020)
If you're interested in buying a home, the first step in the home buying journey is getting preapproved by a licensed lender. Even if you’re already pre-approved, shopping around for lower rates can pay dividends over the life of the loan.
You can fill out the form below to be instantly matched with a licensed lender who knows the area and can guide you through the process.
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Best Time of Year to Buy in Arkansas
Arkansas is one of the most cost-effective housing markets in the country. With median property prices at just $126,200, Arkansas is an excellent choice for low-income buyers. This has been reflected in demand for homes in Arkansas, as inventory levels are relatively low at present.
Even with property prices growing by 6.3% last year, which represents a slower pace in comparison to the national average, Arkansas is a strong seller's market.
This makes the process of timing the market even more important.
Spring is the most popular time for Arkansas homeowners to list their property on the market. This means that you'll have more choice when it comes to finding your dream home. However, this also means that competition from other buyers will be more fierce, so you might need to pay a premium to get the house you want.
If costs are your main concern, then you'll likely to get the best deal once the summer months have passed. The Arkansas housing market typically begins to slow down in autumn and winter, meaning there are fewer buyers to compete with.
This is due to worsening weather conditions, which makes it unsuitable for viewings. Families also prefer to be settled into their Arkansas home well in advance of the new school year, so this segment of the buyer's market has usually closed by August.
With fewer buyers in the market, you're likely to get the best deal possible, although this will also mean lower inventories.
The Best Places to Buy a Home in Arkansas
Bentonville: With its low-crime rates and good cost of living, Bentonville is one of the most sought after areas in Arkansas. Median property prices are higher than the state average at $230,900, however, homes are expected to grow by 6.1% over the next 12-months, which would outpace the U.S. average.
Fayetteville: If you're looking for one of the most cost-effective housing markets in Arkansas, then look no further than Fayetteville. Median property prices sit at just $108,000, making it an ideal choice for low-income buyers. However, property prices are expected to grow by just 1.7% next year, so do take this into account.
Centerton: With more than 14 public schools in the area, Centerton is an excellent choice for families. Property prices are also reasonable, with a median value of $176,000. Centerton also offers good growth prospects, with an estimated 12-month increase of 6.9%.
Conway: If you're looking for a small town that offers good job prospects and an attractive cost of living, then consider Conway. Inventory levels are low here, with 51% of locals renting. However, median property prices are still attractive at $154,000.
Bella Vista: If you're looking for the ideal Arkansas location for your golden years, Bella Vista has a thriving retirement community. The area is surrounded by idyllic lakes and rivers, and there are ample opportunities for hiking. Median property prices are also a steal at $172,200.
4 Ways to Get a Great Deal on a Home in Arkansas
Find a Great Real Estate Agent Based in Arkansas:
Finding a reputable real estate agent that has long standing experience of the Arkansas housing market should be your first port of call. They'll be able to guide you through the buying process and help you time the market well.
An experienced agent will also be able to assist you with other areas of the buying process, such as finding a home to meet your needs, financing, and negotiation.
Read more: What can a real estate agent do for you as the buyer?
Assess Your Needs and Lay Out Your Goals:
When you first meet with a buyer's agent, you'll have the opportunity to lay out your goals. They'll be keen to explore your budget, the type of property you're looking for, and the specific Arkansas location that you'd like to live in. You should also consider whether you need to be situated close to specific amenities, such as schools, public transport, or the airport.
Once this has been ascertained, an Arkansas real estate agent will be able to short-list a number of properties that meet your needs and goals.
Find a Lender and Secure Financing:
Unless you plan to buy your home with cash, you'll need to apply for a mortgage. For most home buyers in Arkansas, interest rates are among the biggest factors when choosing a lender. Doing a little upfront research and comparing options to find the best rates could save you tens of thousands of dollars over the life of your loan.
For example, in Arkansas a typical house is worth $142,000. Assuming a 20% down payment, if you took out a 30-year mortgage for 3.5%, your monthly payment would be $507. But if you shopped around and found a 3% mortgage, your monthly payment would drop to about $479.
Getting a mortgage is a big decision – and it pays to shop around! Keep shopping until you find a lender with competitive rates who also understands your goals. Don’t get pressured into taking on a bigger loan than you’re comfortable with – work with a lender who explains what you’re really signing up for.
» Get instantly matched with a lender who works in your area.
Negotiate for the Best Possible Price:
Although the Arkansas housing market is a seller's market, there are still opportunities to negotiate a better price. This is especially true if your buyer's agent has timed the market well.
Real estate negotiations can be a stressful task, however, a reputable buyer's agent will be able to do this on your behalf.
If you want to find out more about how Clever can connect you with a top-notch buyer's agent that knows the Arkansas housing market well, be sure to get in touch. Simply fill in our online form, and a Clever representative will contact you. They'll also be able to advise you on whether you qualify for a buyer's rebate of $1,000, which is typically available if you purchase a property for $150,000 or more.