Planning to buy or sell a home in 2019? Here's the good news: The New Jersey housing market looks strong, according to Ilene Horowitz, president of New Jersey Realtors.

She said the housing market was strong in 2018 and looks to be that way so far going into 2019 because of a shortage of inventory, which is normal for this time of year in December and January. Shortage of inventory also means higher demand and higher prices. The unemployment rate is also low in New Jersey which also helps with the housing market.

Horowitz said the median sales price for November 2018 stats was $315,000, a 4.1 percent increase from a year ago.

Move-in ready homes are the most desirable homes going into 2019, especially for millennials and first-time buyers. Horowitz said that's because of affordability. If they're putting smaller amounts of down payments, they don't always have a lot of money to do home improvements. She said they love the open floor plan concept so that means tearing down every wall possible. She said first time buyers and millennials love the white kitchens and gray, blue and white paints. They are also fans of dark, stained hardwood floors.

Horowitz said many first-time buyers are looking for these move-in ready homes near cities because of trains, town centers, restaurants, shopping and local events. But she said once these Millennials have families, they're interested in moving to the suburbs to have a sense of community, to be near schools and other forms of recreation.

Horowitz said she has seen people downsize and that will most likely be the case again in 2019. They are swapping out bigger homes for smaller ones near town centers and entertainment within walking distance.

"As lifestyles change, their needs change," she said.

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