Anne Arundel market reportedly rebounding


Residential real estate in Anne Arundel County has enjoyed a strong rebound since late January -- with buyers returning to the market in force, enthusiastic realty executives there report.

But Anne Arundel prices remain relatively depressed and no pricing rebound is anticipated in the immediate future, according to Patricia Sauter, sales manager for the Annapolis/Arnold office of Prudential Preferred Properties.

"Home prices dropped drastically last year and sellers are hoping that prices for their homes will come back. I think we're going to sell the inventory, but I don't think we're going to see a rapid increase in prices," Ms. Sauter predicts.

A release of pent-up demand for housing is behind the surge in buyer interest in Anne Arundel, in Ms. Sauter's view. Before war broke out in the Persian Gulf, "the pent-up people had been terrified to do anything in real estate. They weren't even phoning us last year. Activity was nil," she says.

Yet since late January (as the Mideast situation clarified), activity picked up strongly -- especially among buyers of homes valued at $250,000 and under, Ms. Sauter says. The surge is coming primarily from people 25 to 45 who seek to buy their first home or sell their initial home to go into the second phase of home purchase, she says.

A strong element in Anne Arundel's rebound has been new construction, says Patricia Savani, sales manager for the Annapolis office of the Champion Realty chain. Of special interest to many buyers have been new subdivisions where homes sell for $140,000 and under, she says.

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