Selling

Hiring an Agent to Sell Your House May Cost You NOTHING!

There is no doubt that it is easier to sell your house when using the services of a local real estate professional. The agent will provide: Greater exposure to more buyers The skills of a professional negotiator A layer of protection from possible legal liabilities Professional guidance in navigating any pitfalls that may arise A level of safety while showing the home There is no doubt that these services are valuable to any family that decides to sell. The only question is – how valuable? One of the main reasons For Sale By Owners (FSBOs) don’t use a real estate agent is because they believe these services are not worth the fee an agent charges. But, what if those services didn’t cost the seller a penny? A study by Collateral Analytics, however, reveals that FSBOs don’t actually save anything and, in some cases, may be costing themselves more by not listing with an agent. In the study, they analyzed home sales in a variety of markets in 2016 and the first half of 2017. The data showed that: “FSBOs tend to sell for lower prices than comparable home sales, and in many cases below the average differential represented by the prevailing commission rate.” (emphasis added) Why would FSBOs net less money on their own than if they used an agent? The study makes several suggestions: “There could be systematic bias on the buyer side as well. FSBO sales might attract more strategic buyers than MLS sales, particularly buyers who rationalize…

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Moving-Up to a Luxury Home? Now’s the Time!

If your house no longer fits your needs and you are planning on buying a luxury home, now is a great time to do so! We recently shared data from Trulia’s Market Mismatch Study which showed that in today’s premium home market, buyers are in control.  The inventory of homes for sale in the luxury market far exceeds those searching to purchase these properties in many areas of the country. This means that homes are often staying on the market longer which can eventually lead to a price change. Those who have a starter or trade-up home to sell will find buyers competing, and often entering bidding wars, to be able to call your house their new home. The sale of your starter or trade-up house will aid in coming up with a larger down payment for your new luxury home. Even a 5% down payment on a million-dollar home is $50,000. But not all who are buying luxury properties have a home to sell first. In a Washington Post article, Daryl Judy, an associate broker with Washington Fine Properties, gave some insight into what many millennials are choosing to do: “Some high-earning millennials save money until they are in their early 30s to buy a place and just skip over that starter-home phase. They’ll stay in an apartment until they can afford to pay for the place they want.” Bottom Line The best time to sell anything is when demand is high and supply is low. If you are…

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Thinking of Selling? You Should Do It TODAY!!

That headline might be a little aggressive; however, as August 2017’s housing market data begins to roll in, we can definitely say one thing: If you are considering selling, IT IS TIME TO LIST YOUR HOME TODAY! In a recent article by CBS News, they explained that the number of existing home sales is shrinking, and Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors, said: “There should be 3 million homes on the market right now…Yet, there are only 1.9 million.” And this situation will be affected greatly by recent natural disasters. Yun continued by saying: “Before the hurricanes I would have predicted 1.35 million in new-home construction in 2018…I’ll have to scale that down now.” NAR, in their August 2017 Realtors® Confidence Index, indicated that: “Amid sustained job creation and sustained historically low mortgage rates, REALTORS® reported…that buyer demand is stronger compared to conditions one year ago… and that fifty percent of properties were on the market for less than one month when sold.” The only challenge to today’s market is a severe lack of inventory. A balanced market would have a full six-month supply of homes for sale. Currently, there is only a 4.2-month supply of inventory, which is down from 4.5 months one year ago. Bottom Line With demand increasing and supply dropping, this may be the perfect time to get the best price for your home. Let’s get together and discuss the inventory levels in your neighborhood to determine your next steps.

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4 Reasons to Sell This Fall [INFOGRAPHIC]

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

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Net Worth of Homeowners 44X Greater than Renters

Every three years, the Federal Reserve conducts their Survey of Consumer Finances in which they collect data across all economic and social groups. The latest survey data, covering 2013-2016 was released two weeks ago. The study revealed that the 2016 median net worth of homeowners was $231,400 – a 15% increase since 2013. At the same time, the median net worth of renters decreased by 5% ($5,200 today compared to $5,500 in 2013). These numbers reveal that the net worth of a homeowner is over 44 times greater than that of a renter. Owning a home is a great way to build family wealth As we’ve said before, simply put, homeownership is a form of ‘forced savings.’ Every time you pay your mortgage, you are contributing to your net worth by increasing the equity in your home. That is why, for the fourth year in a row, Gallup reported that Americans picked real estate as the best long-term investment. This year’s results showed that 34% of Americans chose real estate, followed by stocks at 26% and then gold, savings accounts/CDs, or bonds. Greater equity in your home gives you options If you want to find out how you can use the increased equity in your home to move to a home that better fits your current lifestyle, let’s get together to discuss the process.

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The Truth About Homeowner Equity

A recent article from a reputable news source was titled: Here’s why some homeowners still can’t sell. In the opening bullets of the article, the author claimed, “Negative equity is one of the main reasons why there are so few homes for sale.” The article then goes on to soften that stance but we want to bring better clarity to the equity situation. A recent report from CoreLogic (which was quoted in the article) revealed that over 80% of all homes now have “significant equity,” which means the home has over 20% equity. That level of equity allows the homeowner to sell their home if they so desire. (There was no reference to significant equity in the article.) If eight out of ten homeowners now have significant equity in their homes, it is hard to make the claim that lack of equity is “one of the main reasons why there are so few homes for sale.” Here is a map showing the percentage of homes in each state which currently have significant equity: Bottom Line If you are one of many homeowners who is debating selling your home and are wondering how much equity you have accumulated, let’s get together to determine if now is the time to list.

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A Tale of Two Markets: A 6-Month Update

Six months ago, we reported that the mismatch between the type of inventory of homes for sale and the demand of buyers in the US was causing the formation of two markets. In the starter and trade-up home categories, there were significantly more buyers than there were homes for sale, causing a seller’s market. In the premium, or luxury, home categories, the opposite was true as there was a surplus of these homes compared to the buyers that were out searching for their dream homes, which created a buyer’s market. According to the National Association of Realtors latest Existing Home Sales Report, the inventory of existing homes for sale in today’s market is at a 4.2-month supply. Inventory is now 6.5% lower than this time last year, marking the 27th consecutive month of year-over-year decreases. Looking at the latest report from Trulia, we can see that not much has changed, and in fact, recent natural disasters across the country have made inventory conditions even more dire. Trulia’s market mismatch score measures the search interest of buyers against the category of homes that are available on the market. For example: “if 60% of buyers are searching for starter homes but only 40% of listings are starter homes, [the] market mismatch score for starter homes would be 20.” The results of their latest analysis are detailed in the chart below. Nationally, buyers are searching for starter and trade-up homes and are coming up short with the listings available, which is leading to…

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You Don’t Want to Hear This from Your Listing Agent

You’ve decided to sell your house. You begin to interview potential real estate agents to help you through the process. You need someone you trust enough to: Set the market value on possibly the largest asset your family owns (your home) Set the time schedule for the successful liquidation of that asset Set the fee for the services required to liquidate that asset An agent must be concerned first and foremost with you and your family to garner that degree of trust. Make sure this is the case. Be careful if the agent you are interviewing begins the interview by: Bragging about their success Bragging about their company’s success An agent’s success and the success of their company can be important considerations when deciding on the right real estate professional to represent you in the sale of your house. However, you first need to know that they care about what you need and what you expect from the sale. If the agent is not interested in first establishing your needs, how successful they may seem is much less important. Look for someone with the ‘heart of a teacher’ who comes in prepared to explain the current real estate market to you, and is patient enough to take the time to show you how it may impact the sale of your home; not someone only interested in trying to sell you on how great they are. You have many agents from which to choose. Pick someone who truly cares.

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Which Homes Have Increased in Value the Most?

Home values have risen dramatically over the last twelve months. The latest Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors puts the annual increase in the median existing-home price at 5.6%. CoreLogic, in their most recent Home Price Index Report, revealed that national home prices have increased by 6.7% year-over-year. CoreLogic broke appreciation down ever further into four price ranges which gives a more detailed view than simply looking at the year-over-year increases of the national median home price. The chart below shows the four tiers and each one’s growth from July 2016 to July 2017 (the latest data available). It is important to pay attention to how prices are changing in your local market. The location of your home is not the only factor in determining how much it has appreciated over the course of the last year. Lower priced homes have appreciated at greater rates than homes at the upper ends of the spectrum, due to demand from first-time home buyers and baby boomers looking to downsize. Bottom Line If you are planning on listing your home for sale in today’s market, let’s get together to go over exactly what’s going on in your area and your price range.

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Thinking of Selling your Home? Competition is Coming

The number of building permits issued for single-family homes is the best indicator of how many newly built homes will rise over the next few months. According to the latest U.S. Census Bureau and U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development Residential Sales Report, the number of these permits were up 7.7% over last year. How will this impact buyers? More inventory means more options. Danielle Hale, Realtor.com’s Chief Economist, explained this is good news for the housing market – especially for those looking to buy: “It’s not spectacular construction growth, but it’s slow and steady in the right direction. Eventually, the pickup in single-family home construction will mean [buyers] will have more options. Especially with the limited number of sales right now, more options are really needed.” How will this impact sellers? More inventory means more competition. Today, because of the tremendous lack of inventory, a seller can expect: A great price on their home as buyers outbid each other for it A quick sale as buyers have so little to choose from Fewer hassles as buyers don’t want to “rock the boat” on the deal With an increase in competition, the seller may not enjoy these same benefits. As Hale said: “As new construction continues to increase, home shoppers will eventually have more [choices] and a bit more time to make purchase decisions compared to today’s quick-moving housing market.” Bottom Line If you are considering the sale of your home, it might make sense to beat this new…

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