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Virginia Realtor of the Year expects strong housing market to continue in 2022

A Harrisonburg realtor wins VA Realtor of the Year and is appointed to state board. What he expects for the new year.
Published: Jan. 30, 2022 at 7:13 PM EST
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - 2021 was a big year for the local housing market and for one area realtor.

Kemper Funkhouser, the supervising broker at Funkhouser Real Estate Group, was named the Virginia Realtor of the Year and was appointed to a four-year term on the state’s real estate board.

Funkhouser has been around real estate all his life and has been licensed since 2003. His father Joe Funkhouser started the real estate group in 1975. He also won Virginia Realtor of the Year in 1989.

As a member of the state real estate board, Kemper Funkhouser will help oversee the state’s real estate licensees and rewrite regulations for them.

Funkhouser said he expects home prices and sales volume in the area to continue to increase in 2022 but at a slower rate than in 2021.

“We’ve seen, over the past year, both home prices and sales volume go up between 10 and 12 percent throughout the Shenandoah Valley. We expect continued increases in 2022 but maybe not at the same increase percentage. We expect to see that pace slow a little bit,” he said.

While he expects the 2022 real estate market to remain strong, he said there are two key factors to keep an eye on.

“If inflation increases, that’s going to be an issue. If we see interest rates continue to increase, it’s going to make homes more expensive and less affordable, and so, I would encourage buyers that are in the market right now to be ready to make that purchase in the near future to lock in the lowest interest rate that you can,” said Funkhouser.

Funkhouser said the demand for area housing is only going to increase as the larger millennial generation continues to move into the home buying phase.

“I think over the next few years we’re going to be looking at development of housing across all price ranges. That’s really the need, everything from affordable housing to custom homes. There’s going be an even greater need for workforce housing as we see interest rates creep up,” he said.

Funkhouser said there are typically seven to eight year cycles in the housing market, but he expects current trends to continue for the next several years.

“The past 20 years have been very usual as we think about the world events that have happened. So, what we would typically see is a financial cycle, but those years have been thrown off, we would expect cyclically a downturn in the market sometime soon; however, we’re seeing that the fundamentals of the market are very strong right now, so we don’t expect that,” he said.

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