The Best Time to List Your House? TODAY!

You may have heard that the housing market is softening. There is no doubt that buyer traffic has decreased. There are fewer purchasers in the market than there were last month and at this time last year. What you may not have heard, however, is that there is still a severe shortage of listing inventory in many regions of the country. In a recent interview discussing the housing market, First American’s Chief Economist Mark Fleming put it simply: “The biggest challenge is really the availability of supply.” When we look at available inventory numbers released by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), we see that the actual number of homes for sale has decreased in each of the last five months. What does this mean to you as a seller? The best time to sell is when there is less competition. That guarantees you a better price and fewer hassles in the transaction. Bottom Line If you are thinking of selling your house this year, the best time to put it on the market might be right now. Let’s get together to evaluate the demand for your house in our market!

Want to Get the Most Money from The Sale of Your Home? Use These 2 Tips!

Every homeowner wants to make sure they maximize their financial reward when selling their home. But how do you guarantee that you receive the maximum value for your house? Here are two keys to ensure that you get the highest price possible. 1. Price it a LITTLE LOW  This may seem counterintuitive, but let’s look at this concept for a moment. Many homeowners think that pricing their homes a little OVER market value will leave them with room for negotiation. In actuality, this just dramatically lessens the demand for your house (see chart below). Instead of the seller trying to ‘win’ the negotiation with one buyer, they should price it so that demand for the home is maximized. By doing this, the seller will not be fighting with a buyer over the price but will instead have multiple buyers fighting with each other over the house. HGTV gives this advice: “First impressions are everything when selling your home. Studies have shown that the first two weeks on the market are the most crucial to your success. During these initial days, your home will be exposed to all active buyers. If your price is perceived as too high, you will quickly lose this initial audience and find yourself relying only on the trickle of new buyers entering the market each day. Markets are dynamic, and your price has an expiration date. You have one chance to grab attention. Make sure your pricing helps you stand out on the shelf — in a positive way.” 2. Use a Real Estate Professional This, too, may…

Top Renovations to Complete Before You Sell Your House [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: If you are planning on listing your house for sale this year, here are the top four home improvement projects that will net you the most Return on Investment (ROI). Minor bathroom renovations can go a long way toward improving the quality of your everyday life and/or impressing potential buyers. Upgrading your landscaping or curb appeal helps get buyers in the door. These upgrades rank as the 2nd and 4th best renovations for returns on investment.

Why You Should Not For Sale By Owner

In today’s market, as home prices rise and a lack of inventory continues, some homeowners may consider trying to sell their homes on their own, known in the industry as a For Sale by Owner (FSBO). There are several reasons why this might not be a good idea for most sellers. Here are the top five reasons: 1. Exposure to Prospective Buyers According to NAR’s 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, 95% of buyers searched online for a home last year. That is in comparison to only 13% of buyers looking at print newspaper ads. Most real estate agents have an Internet strategy to promote the sale of your home, do you? 2. Results Come from the Internet Where did buyers find the homes they actually purchased? 50% on the Internet 28% from a real estate agent 7% from a yard sign 1% from newspapers The days of selling your house by putting out a lawn sign or putting an ad in the paper are long gone. Having a strong Internet strategy is crucial. 3. There Are Too Many People to Negotiate With Here is a list of some of the people with whom you must be prepared to negotiate if you decide to For Sale by Owner: The buyer who wants the best deal possible The buyer’s agent who solely represents the best interests of the buyer The buyer’s attorney (in some parts of the country) The home inspection companies, which work for the buyer and will almost always find some problems with…

Where is the Housing Market Headed in 2019? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: ­Interest rates are projected to increase steadily throughout 2019, but buyers will still be able to lock in a rate lower than their parents or grandparents did when they bought their homes! Home prices will rise at a rate of 4.8% over the course of 2019 according to CoreLogic. All four major reporting agencies believe that home sales will outpace 2018!

24 Hours that Suddenly Improved the Market

This year started strong for real estate, but then the market began to soften. Home inventory in the starter and move-up categories dwindled to almost nothing, mortgage rates were projected to rise, and home sales had decreased for several months in a row. To many, the outlook heading into 2019 appeared dim… at best. Then, in a 24-hour window last week, things seemed to change. On Wednesday, the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) revealed in their Existing Homes Sales Report that home sales had INCREASED for the second consecutive month. The next day, NAR’s economic research team announced that the percentage of first-time buyers in the market was higher than last month and even higher than a year ago. What happened to turn around the downward momentum in the market?  You only needed to wait a few hours to find out. On the heels of NAR’s revelations, Zillow released their November Real Estate Market Report that explained: “After nearly four years of annual declines in inventory, the number of homes for sale has now increased year-over-year for three straight months…” Ending 2018, we now know two things: Listing inventory increased over the last three months Home sales increased over the last two months Maybe a lack of inventory was the major challenge all along. But, what about those pesky interest rates? Last Thursday (the day after all of the above news), Freddie Mac announced that mortgage rates did not increase but instead decreased…again. From their release: “The response to the recent decline in mortgage rates is already being felt in…

Buyers Are Looking for Your Home, Now [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Existing home sales are currently at an annual pace of 5.32 million and have increased on a monthly basis for the last two months. The inventory of existing homes for sale remains below the 6-months needed for a normal market and is now at a 3.9-month supply. Inventory remains low due to high demand from buyers who are still looking for houses to buy!

4 Quick Reasons NOT to Fear a Housing Crash

There is a lot of uncertainty regarding the real estate market heading into 2019. That uncertainty has raised concerns that we may be headed toward another housing crash like the one we experienced a decade ago. Here are four reasons why today’s market is much different: 1. There are fewer foreclosures now than there were in 2006 A major challenge in 2006 was the number of foreclosures. There will always be foreclosures, but they spiked by over 100% prior to the crash. Foreclosures sold at a discount and, in many cases, lowered the values of adjacent homes. We are ending 2018 with foreclosures at historic pre-crash numbers – much fewer foreclosures than we ended 2006 with. 2. Most homeowners have tremendous equity in their homes Ten years ago, many homeowners irrationally converted much, if not all, of their equity into cash with a cash-out refinance. When foreclosures rose and prices fell, they found themselves in a negative equity situation where their homes were worth less than their mortgage amounts. Many just walked away from their houses which led to even more foreclosures entering the market. Today is different. Over forty-eight percent of homeowners have at least 50% equity in their homes and they are not extracting their equity at the same rates they did in 2006. 3. Lending standards are much tougher One of the causes of the crash ten years ago was that lending standards were almost non-existent. NINJA loans (no income, no job, and no assets) no longer…

Why Houses DO NOT Sell in a Strong Market

As we approach the end of the year, many homeowners find themselves asking the question, “If we’re currently in a strong real estate market, why won’t my house sell?” Below are the 5 most common reasons why a listing contract will expire: 1. The Price Sometimes when the market is hot, homeowners attempt to set their listing price higher. Their hope is that a motivated buyer will be willing to pay any price for a house in their desired neighborhood! Sellers must remember, though, that in today’s market a house must be sold twice; first to the buyer and then to their bank. A buyer can agree to pay the homeowner’s asking price, but after the bank conducts their appraisal, the price might need to be adjusted. The bank will only give the buyer a mortgage for the value of determined in the appraisal. Sellers must also keep in mind that today’s homebuyers are well-educated. Before they look to buy a house, they have already seen many houses online. They’ve done their research on the neighborhoods they are interested in, including information on the school districts in the area. They will know if your house seems overpriced and will not waste their time considering it. This is why it’s so important to make sure that your home is priced right from day one on the market! 2. The Condition of the House In many areas, builders are taking advantage of the lack of inventory of homes for sale by building…

4 Reasons to Sell Your House This Winter [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Buyer demand continues to outpace the supply of homes for sale which means that buyers are often competing with one another for the few listings that are available! Housing inventory is still under the 6-month supply needed to sustain a normal housing market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire.