Real Estate

Austintown ‘Sells as Well as Any Area’

AUSTINTOWN, Ohio – In the midst of a surge of commercial development, the residential real estate market in Austintown is following in a similar vein.

“There’s a lack of desirable homes on the market, like ranch homes. So any time something like that goes on the market, they go pretty quick,” says Zakk Easterbrook, an agent in the Austintown office of Century 21 Lakeside Realty. “There’s a lot coming up in Austintown, which is making it more desirable. We’re getting a lot of requests from people moving into Austintown.”

Over the last six months, the average sale price in the township has been slightly more than $111,000, he reports, while the average time on market has been 86 days. In the previous six-month period, the average price was just north of $110,000 and the average time on the market was 84 days.

“Austintown sells as well as any area. When you put houses on the market, they’re a little lower in price range than Canfield. But if you put something out between $100,000 and $200,000, it sells in a couple [of] days,” says Bob Roberts of Mayo Realtors.

Even as a shadow looms overhead with the expected closing of the General Motors Lordstown Complex, the full impact hasn’t yet hit the real estate market, the real estate agents say. The final day of production at the plant is scheduled for March 8.

“I haven’t really seen too much impact yet. It’s coming up soon,” Roberts says. “But there are some who have transferred out and a few are staying put until they see what happens, if they get another car or another maker.”

When the fate of the plant is finally decided, then the picture of the real estate market for the remainder of 2019 will become clearer, like so much else surrounding the closing.

“It’s happening slowly. I do foresee a lot of listings coming up, for sure,” Easterbrook says.

Most of what’s driving the market right now is the development along Austintown’s major corridors – Mahoning Avenue, state Route 46 and South Raccoon Road. Over the past year, the township zoning inspector recorded projects valued at more than $5 million, including senior-care centers, restaurants, service stations and a medical office.

“That’s what drives residential sales, having those amenities,” says Lakeside’s Ted Kegley. “If you have vacant businesses, that’s what people notice when they drive through. When I go to a new area, that’s the first thing I judge: Why are there no new businesses?”

That sort of development can become a self-sustaining cycle. People move to the township because of the available amenities, which in turn provides more of a base for national chains, helping attract more to the area.

“There are businesses that are quietly looking at Austintown. I’ve been on the phone with someone I’ve known for years who’s researching Austintown for a restaurant,” Kegley says. “They don’t pay him to pick places on a whim.”

Adds Roberts, “It’s a big community and that’s driving commercial. … People from Austintown seem to stay in the town. They grow up, get a job, get married and then buy a house in Austintown again.”

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.