Area Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

July 23, 2018

7 Pricing Myths You Need to Get Past If You Want to Sell Your Home

When homeowners are preparing to put their properties on the market, one aspect is usually foremost in their minds: money. Setting the asking price accurately can mean the difference between getting an offer quickly and having a house languish for months, drawing little interest. With that in mind, it's important that potential sellers block out a lot of the noise that often surrounds the intricate art and science of pricing. There are plenty of myths that may cause sellers to lose sleep at night as they attempt to separate fact from fiction. The following are statements that can stand in the way of a successful sale.

1. 'If we keep waiting, a better offer will come along!'

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When sellers receive an offer from the first showing, they may be skeptical or hesitant to accept it, wondering if other prospective buyers would be inclined to pay more. Thoughts of potential bidding wars could cause sellers to want to wait and see who else falls for their place. But, remember the old adage, "A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush?" There's no guarantee other would-be buyers are waiting around the corner. If the offer is a fair one, entertain it and count your blessings.

2. 'Getting an offer right away, means the agent priced it too low!'

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When sellers receive an offer early in the process, as excited as they might be, many can't help but wonder, "Should we have asked for more money? Did our agent price it too cheaply?" While it's natural to be skeptical (and even a little greedy), receiving an offer on the early end of the spectrum most likely means your home was priced accurately and attractively. If you trust your agent, you know he or she didn't pick a number out of the sky, but rather based it on extensive market research. So, be glad your sale is moving in the right direction.

3. 'We should price it so there's room to negotiate!'

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Let's be honest: Most sellers would love to get top dollar for their homes. But overpricing it with the intention of being willing to accept a lower offer may just leave you empty handed in the long run. Plus, if you have to drop your ask multiple times, buyers may begin to wonder what's wrong with the place — other than the price, that is.

4. 'That's not what my Zestimate says it's worth!'

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Have you ever noticed how homeowners are eager to believe Zestimates or other automated valuation models when that price exceeds their expectations? Yet, when the opposite happens, they assume it's outdated or erroneous information? The point we're making is, these numbers can be inaccurate, so again, trust your agent over the Internet. Enough said.

5. 'We can add all renovation costs to the asking price!'

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Sellers may adore the improvements and renovations they've made and want to add in those costs to the asking price. But remember, not every change is going to land a huge return on investment. If you're curious about what you can expect on those fixes, check out Remodeling Magazine's annual ‘Cost Versus Value' report to get an idea of which upgrades yield the biggest bang for your buck. Also, as you're making changes, bear in mind that the infinity pool you view as an asset may just seem like a huge liability to a buyer.

6. 'My Realtor® overpriced my house to make a larger commission.'

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Agents are paid a percentage of the selling price of the home. However, even if they were to raise the ask by $25,000, in most cases that would yield an additional $1,500 in commission, which would then be divvied up between the broker the agent is working for and the buyer's agent, leaving your agent with less than $750 more in his or her pocket. It's hard to imagine an agent would blow a potential quick sale — and take on weeks or months of additional showings and marketing expenses — for a few hundred dollars.

7. 'Reducing the price is a sign of weakness!'

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While no homeowner is eager to drop the listing price, if time is passing and there's been little interest, it could be time to consider lowering the ask. Remember, time is money. While you're waiting for someone to meet your price, you're still paying the mortgage, taxes, utilities, and insurance etc. Plus, sometimes, lowering the price can put your home in front of a group of new buyers, which could generate a lot more interest and, ultimately, get the price back up closer to where it was in the first place.

Posted in Real Estate Focus
May 28, 2018

Home Improvements with the Best ROI

Home renovations are a great way to make your home more livable. But if you're thinking about selling your home anytime in the future, you want to know you're going to be able to get back at least some of your investment when you put your house on the market. But which renovations are going to give you the most bang for your buck? In honor of National Home Improvement Month, let's take a look at the home improvements you can make that will not only make your home better, but will give you a decent ROI. According to the 2017 Remodeling Impact Report from the National Association of Realtors® (which evaluated 15 different home improvement projects to gauge how much of each project's initial cost was recovered), there are eight home renovations that will recover at least 60% of their value:

Hardwood Flooring Refinish

Cost: $3000 Estimated Cost Recovered: $3000 Percent of value recovered: 100%

New Wood Flooring

Cost: $5500 Estimated Cost Recovered: $5000 Percent of value recovered: 91%

Insulation Upgrade

Cost: $2100 Estimated Cost Recovered: $1600 Percent of value recovered: 76%

HVAC Replacement

Cost: $7475 Estimated Cost Recovered: $5000 Percent of value recovered: 67%

Basement Conversion to Living Area

Cost: $40,000 Estimated Cost Recovered: $25,000 Percent of value recovered: 63%

Complete Kitchen Renovation

Cost: $65,000 Estimated Cost Recovered: $40,000 Percent of value recovered: 62%

Posted in Real Estate Focus
April 10, 2018

6 Awful Reasons

6 Awful Reasons for Not Hiring a Real Estate Agent

 

There are millions of homes bought and sold every year, most of them with the help of a real estate agent. However, there is still a segment of the population that chooses to go it alone when it comes time to sell or buy a home.

 

There are different reasons for this, many of which aren’t very good. The only good reason might be if you’re an agent yourself, and even then, it might be better to work with another agent so that you’re not letting your own emotion cloud your judgment. Here are some of the worst reasons for not hiring a real estate agent:

 

1. To save some money

You might think you’re guaranteed to save yourself money by not hiring a real estate agent, but that’s not true. It’s very likely that it will cost you money during the process because of all of the potential pitfalls that you’re not even aware of. There are multiple points in a real estate transaction where making the right decision, or knowing what to look for will save you thousands of dollars. Real estate agents know this.

 

2. Because you think you’re a great negotiator

You probably think you’re a great negotiator, and you might be, but you also might not be as good as you think. In fact, there are many billionaires and CEO’s who openly admit that they aren’t good at negotiating, and oftentimes have other people negotiate on their behalf. Again, understanding real estate, and what factors may affect price are things that a real estate agent knows that can help with negotiation, and will get you a much better deal.

 

3. You read about a bad experience someone had

Of course there are horror stories on social media and forums about people’s experience buying and selling a home. This shouldn’t deter you from hiring an agent to guide you through the process, because you’re much more likely to find yourself in a nightmare scenario if you go it alone. There’s an important thing to remember about the nightmares you see online; people are much more likely to post about their negative experiences than their positive ones. There are lots horror stories about hospitals, restaurants, and hotels too — that doesn’t mean you’ll never leave the house again, right?

 

4. Because you saw a real estate show on HGTV

We all love real estate shows. It’s a lot of fun to sit back and watch a shockingly good-looking couple flip a home and make a $50,000 profit in less than 30 minutes. But it’s important not to confuse television with reality. You can’t learn everything you need to know from watching tv, otherwise this country would be full of expert martial artists, race-car drivers, and stand-up comedians. Hire someone with real-world experience to help you along.

 

5. You think you’re the only one who knows how much your home is “really worth”

You love your home, and it’s likely that you love it and appreciate it more than anyone else does. It’s completely natural to not only develop a sentimental attachment to where you’ve spent years of your life, but to also appreciate all of the repairs, upgrades, and other special details that you know and love. But just because you believe your home should be priced a certain way, doesn’t mean that’s what the market will bear. Having a business-minded, detached approach to pricing and selling your home is critical to a successful real estate transaction.

 

6. Because… “How hard could it really be?”

Some lessons in life are only learned through experience. Real estate agents have studied, been through it, and know that conducting a real estate transaction can be a potential minefield if you’re not careful. As a buyer or seller, it’s important not to minimize the difficulty and effort that goes into closing on a home. Hire a real estate agent, and let them worry about the difficult aspects, you’ll be glad you did.

Posted in Real Estate Focus
Jan. 18, 2018

Tax Deductions for Rental Homes

Tax Deductions for Rental Homes

Amy Yount - Monday, January 08, 2018

“Although being a landlord certainly has its cons, tops among its pros are the tax deductions rental homeowners enjoy.” Check out this File-With-Confidence Tax Guide by HouseLogic

Also, check out what the new tax bill might mean for you as homeowner in this article.

Jan 08, 2018, Courtesy of HouseLogic, Copyright 2018 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS
July 31, 2017

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Curious about local real estate? So are we! Every month we review trends in our real estate market and consider the number of homes on the market in each price tier, the amount of time particular homes have been listed for sale, specific neighborhood trends, the median price and square footage of each home sold and so much more. We’d love to invite you to do the same!

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We can definitely fill you in on details that are not listed on the report and help you determine the best home for you. If you are wondering if now is the time to sell, please try out our INSTANT home value tool. You’ll get an estimate on the value of your property in today’s market. Either way, we hope to hear from you soon as you get to know our neighborhoods and local real estate market better.

Posted in Market Updates