Triangle realtors face intense competition for homes; Huge Pittsboro development unfolding

The low number of homes on the market, and a high number of realtors, is leading to intense competition in the Triangle as consumers try to take advantage of low interest rates and buy.


In Wake County, there were 1,123 active listings in February 2021, compared to 3,298 in February 2020.
And despite the low numbers, there are plenty of realtors. The Wall Street Journal recently noted that in January,there were 1.04 million U.S. homes for sale, down 26 percent from the previous year. But the National Association of Realtors had a whopping 1.45 million realtors — up 4.8 percent from the previous year.

That’s also true in the Triangle. Andrew Sims, CEO of the Raleigh Regional Association of Realtors, notes that the Triangle Multiple Listing Service has 13,600 subscribers (mostly realtors) and about 4,300 listings.

But he said that’s a bit deceptive. At any given time, only about a third of those are full-time realtors, with others doing it part-time or in addition to another career. And interest in becoming a realtor tends to rise in tough economic times, as people in sales and similar fields transition to new careers.

Regardless, this is one of the hottest markets in the Triangle in recent memory. Millennials ready to buy their first home are butting into investors who can put more cash down, all contributing to an intense experience.

“Buyers are exhausted,” Sims said. “They are exhausted from every listing in a certain price range being between 60 and 70 offers and many of them sight unseen."

Epic Games raises even more cash

One might have thought Cary-based Epic Games would be content with its cash status after closing on a $1.78 billion raise last year.

Apparently not.

Britain’s SkyNews reported on March 22 that the video game developer is looking to raise another $1 billion, bringing the “Fortnite” maker’s valuation to a stunning $28 billion. It was valued at $17.3 billion after the 2020 raise.

Epic Games declined to comment on the report.

The latest news continues a streak of headlines the company has been making since last year. In July, it was revealed that entertainment giant Sony had grabbed a $250 million stake in Epic.
Then in August came news about the $1.73 billion raise, which included the Sony cash.

More North Carolinians start businesses in pandemic

The pandemic forced many in business to pivot – and North Carolinians did so in a big way.

According to business application data from the U.S. Census Bureau, people in this state submitted 93.8 percent more new business applications in January 2021 than January 2020.

Across the United States, business applications jumped 72.9 percent in January from the previous year, according to the Census Bureau.

Huge Chatham Park development unfolding

The developers behind Pittsboro’s Chatham Park development have brought on a Raleigh brokerage firm to handle leasing and land brokerage at two of the park’s burgeoning districts as activity ramps up.

Mosaic developer Lee-Moore Capital and Chatham Park developer Preston Development tapped Lee & Associates to head up leasing at the 44-acre commercial district Mosaic and land brokerage at the 92-acre Northwood Landing. The first building is set to open at Mosaic in May.

Moss Withers, CEO and president of Lee & Associates Raleigh- Durham, notes new businesses have grabbed 60 percent of the available space.

Altogether, that part of the park will feature 750,000 square feet of retail, restaurant, office, medical, service and educational space for lease.

West Raleigh looks to make key step forward

A reimagined west Raleigh is moving closer to fruition, with the state planning a new headquarters for the Department of Health and Human Services on Blue Ridge Road.

The Blue Ridge corridor has been a mish-mash for years, with key facilities such as PNC Arena and N.C. Museum of Art sharing the space with low-slung state properties. But dramatic change is coming, with Bandwidth building its new headquarters in the area and the state ready to revamp the properties it owns.On March 23, the N.C. Department of Administration held a virtual town hall to discuss plans to take zoning from 3 to 5 stories to 12 at the site for
the new HQ across from the art museum.

That opens up all sorts of mixed-use opportunities on Blue Ridge Road, which would enhance the region and help spark the growth imagined when PNC Arena opened in 1999.

It eventually means workers, and Wolfpack and Hurricanes fans,
could walk out and enjoy restaurants, bars and amenities – finally.

She said it

“If you feel like your voice is being marginalized ... I invite you to be able to feel courageous and brave enough to address that yourself, but if you don’t, get help. Those of us who see it, I want us to lean into our responsibility for not staying silent. ... It is incumbent upon us as leaders to address that situation and not remain silent.”

Gina Loften, chief technology officer at Microsoft US, speaking to a virtual crowd at the North Carolina Technology Association’s Diversity + Inclusion event March 24.