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Before President Barack Obama signed an extension and expansion for a homebuyer tax credit, I was hearing some chatter that the frenzy in the market would drop off dramatically after Halloween. The rationale: buyers would be too late to get into a house before the Nov. 30 deadline for the tax credit, and therefore might wait until spring to resume looking.

It was a sentiment I’d included in this story:

The question is: will the frenzy subside after the deadline passes?

“Following this weekend, there’s going to be a perceived drop in demand from buyers who were saying, ‘Hey, I can close by the end of November,’ or just — ‘Hey, let’s just wait a few more months and see what happens,’” said Dan Cassidy, a Hillcrest-based real estate agent.

Cassidy called me this afternoon and we chatted about what he’s seeing in the market now that the credit’s been extended and expanded to April 30. He concludes that the buyer frenzy hasn’t disappeared, but it has experienced a typical November pattern.

“I think it kind of just slowed down,” he said. “I am seeing a general seasonal slow.”

There’s been no market crash, he said — no complete disappearance of buyer interest. But by extending the credit the federal government decreased the urgency and there’s less of a demand to close now than there had been in the run-up to the deadline.

“I’m actually glad not to see a huge ramp-up in desire because I think it leads to ugliness,” Cassidy said. “Price increases, bidding wars, sellers saying buyers have to drop all contingencies (demands) or they’ll cancel the deal.”

Are you a buyer trying to take advantage of the tax credit? Are you taking a break from your house hunt for the holidays? Leave a comment below (in Survival) to share your perspective.

KELLY BENNETT

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