In taking the reins as President of the Greater Chattanooga REALTORS® from my friend Robert Backer, I am both inspired and optimistic. No matter your profession or background, 2021 was a year that proved we are all capable of adapting to change and we are much stronger when we work together.
All things seem to be pointing in the right direction for our market and I am confident that our market will continue the trend of recovery and homes will remain accessible to people moving to our area from all over the country.
Like many REALTORS® who’ve served before me, I held a variety of jobs before choosing the career path of a full-time REALTOR®. During college, I worked in the food and beverage industry where I honed my people skills. While working as a journeyman carpenter in my late twenties, I learned that I really enjoyed building, which led me into general contracting and project management. Overall, I believe that all of those experiences and life lessons led me to where I am today as a REALTOR®.
Years ago, I had been away from Chattanooga since I went away to attend college, and I returned to find it booming, and seeing it blossom was a great feeling. Neighborhoods were thriving, businesses were moving here from around the world, and downtown had an energy that I had never experienced in my youth. Many people talk of Chattanooga’s renaissance, but I feel we are far from seeing the height of its rebirth. In my years as a Realtor, I’ve seen many trends and fluctuations affect our market, but I also feel that these changes were quickly responded to with necessary adjustment. Not just on the part of the consumer, but from all perspectives - builders, government, buyers, sellers, lenders, and REALTORS®.
We must all remember that we will often face a wide variety of disruptors, but eventually, things sort themselves out. Recently Dr. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist of the National Association of REALTORS®, provided a market forecast that included a frenzied market mellowing out even with a slight rise in mortgage rates. In 2022, market forecasters are projecting a 3.7% growth in home sales and a 6.9% increase in home prices in the Greater Chattanooga market.
After 2021 year-end numbers come in, we will have a better grasp of what these projected numbers mean locally for our housing market. I know that I’ll be looking forward to seeing the data from this past year to see where we need to focus locally. For example, we must continue to look at ways to solve our inventory issues and ensure that affordable homes are more accessible to homebuyers that are ready to invest. It is without question that homeownership leads to numerous positive outcomes that extend beyond the home, such as economic stability, better access to quality education, increased civic and social engagement and better health.
The positive predictions for 2022 point toward a market that should be a bit more stable than 2021. While markets are ever-changing, we hope to see stability return in the areas that support and surround real estate. This would include home-building, labor, and supplies.
At Greater Chattanooga REALTORS®, we have been blessed with some of the brightest leaders over the years. I’ve had the privilege of serving alongside many of these great leaders on various committees, including Governmental Affairs, Grievance, Community Partnerships, and Leadership Development. Most recently, my service on the Board of Directors has provided me with the encouragement that our membership is home to many good, hard-working REALTORS® who want to see our market continue to grow and thrive. They have weathered a few tough years and deserve the recognition for their hard work. It is because of them that I am truly honored to serve in the role of President in 2022.
To homebuyers and sellers within or moving into the Greater Chattanooga area, you can rest assured that REALTORS® will continue to advocate for policies that will help make the most out of your investment and ensure that your property rights are at the forefront of our conversations with elected officials.
I’ve enjoyed reflecting on 2021, but like most of you, I’m ready to see what 2022 holds for all of us. I also feel confident in saying that on behalf of all REALTORS® throughout the Chattanooga area, we love serving our clients and our community. That’s Who We R.