Buyers working hard to navigate competitive sellers' market

Updated: Jul. 10, 2017 at 8:03 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Real estate agents in Louisville said it's a sellers' market right now. There are about 500 fewer homes that in the market this year versus last year. To survive in the real estate market, competitive buyers must prove their creditworthiness.

"We had some medical bills that went bad," Steve McCubbin said. "You have to have those things cleared up. We didn't know that. We were told most people would overlook that, but that's not the case."

After a neck injury, McCubbin could not work. His medical bills piled up and his credit score took a hit.

"We had a large debt to income ratio that we had to fix," McCubbin said.

Overwhelmed, Mccubbin rented a home for his family for seven years. He says over that period he spent about $80,000 in rent.

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In 2016 there were 4,449 houses available in Louisville's market. As of July 2017, there are 3,861 houses for sale in the area.

According to the Greater Louisville Association of Realtors, the average housing prices are up eight percent from last year. From January to May 2016 the average selling price was $186,118. For the same period in 2017, the average selling price is $200,996.

With a low credit score, McCubbin felt like the odds were stacked against him.

"It seemed to me every time we found a house that we liked so did everyone else," McCubbin said.

Over the past five years, the average number of days a house is on the market has continuously d ropped. In 2012 the average was 93 days and in 2017 the average is 50 days.

"Any market where inventory is so low and you are getting four or five offers on these properties, Steven Adams said, "the only way you have a chance is to be creditworthy."

Adams is a realtor and says bidding wars on a home made it crucial for him to connect McCubbin with a plan to chip away his debt and improve his credit score.

"The progress he made in such a short time was pretty impressive," Adams said.

"I think I'll have a basketball net out here soon and I can imagine my kids running around," McCubbing said as he stood outside his new home.

In two weeks, it will be moving day for McCubbin and his family. Mccubbin improved his credit score by over 100 points in under 4 months.

"You have to stop and say do I really want to take this vacation to Disney or do I want to buy a house," McCubbin said.

Mccubbin's financial discipline paid off and he hopes to inspire others.

"There were things that I was taught by the mortgage lender. And it didn't happen all at one time, but it did happen within six months though," McCubbin said.

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