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‘The best time to buy’

CNY real estate market holding its own

“It’s not easy, in fact it’s harder than it used to be, but I look at it as the new normal,” Re said. “We’ll never see another 2005 again, but it’s not as dire as you may think from listening to the national news, with foreclosures, short bails and people losing their homes in Florida, Arizona and California.”

Re said he is optimistic for the future.

“We’ve done incrementally better each year, and did a little bit better in 2012. It’s turning around slowly and steadily, although it will never be like it was before.”

Dan Bargabos, president of Heritage Homes, called last year “the toughest year for new home construction in recent memory.”

“Still, plenty of homes got built, but it was difficult,” Bargabos said. “However, this year, we’re already doing much better than the year before. There’s so much going on and a lot of people that are savvy are watching the news, paying attention to what is happening, and that affects how they see the world. People are recognizing that they want to stay in Central New York, and I think remodeling will pick up also.”

He said he has “more deals and potential deals in the pipeline, more appointments through the month of February this year over last year.”

Bargabos said the local economy “is stronger than people give credit for. The way we are affected is a lot different than the way the country was. We were impacted because the whole economy slowed down, but it is not that unusual to have a low or a high. We go through the cycles all the time, but because the underlying economy here in CNY is strong the reality is that nothing that bad happened here. The change is that someone who would have spent $500,000 on a new home is spending $400,000; the people who wanted to spend $600,000 are spending $500,000 and some people who wanted to buy a new house remodeled instead.”

He said the market seems to have settled a bit.

“We’re going to do fine,” he said. “Are we going to do great – no – we never did. We never got caught up in the sub-prime mess, and that is why we didn’t see the foreclosure situation that other parts of the country experienced.”

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