New housing report details challenges for those looking to buy in Tennessee
Knoxville Area Association of Realtors said in their yearly report that inventory is low while home prices continue to remain high.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - If you’re looking to buy a home in Tennessee, right now there may be a few hurdles to go through, according to research done by the Knoxville Area Association of Realtors.
In KAAR’s yearly housing report, they said that Knoxville homes now cost more than the U.S. average for the first time in many years while adding that inventory continues to be a problem for people looking to buy.
“Land cost is growing rapidly and land is our best commodity and it’s not a commodity anymore we can’t build more land,” said Hancen Sale with KAAR.
The report sated that in Knox County alone there was a 76% decline in housing inventory in 2021 when comparing those numbers to pre-pandemic levels in 2019.
These data points are being discovered by some who are looking to call East Tennessee home, like Kittu Pannu, who is moving to Knoxville from New York City after being accepted into a program at the University of Tennessee.
“It was a little jarring to see the prices as high as they were. I was definitely expecting them to be a little lower,” said Pannu.
Pannu said he’s been searching for months for a place to live, but as soon as he sees a home he is interested in, it’s gone in a matter of days, or even hours.
With low inventory and high costs, it’s created a tough situation for many potential buyers in East Tennessee as experts look ahead for change.
“Our land use and zoning regulations dictate how much housing you can build on a piece of land and we have to maximize what land we have left,” said Sale.
At Monday night’s Knox County Commission the topic of the housing came up while county leaders stressed the need to work to expand and develop businesses and companies already in East Tennessee instead of looking to bring more companies into the area citing a lack of places for them to live.
According to County Commissioner Larsen Jay, the county is working with their Advance Knox initiative to plan the growth of the county for years to come as they hope to have concrete plans of what form it will take in the coming months.
Jay added that there likely won’t be any concrete plans on potential zoning changes or any big housing developments for about another year.
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