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Today's Buyer Should Know

The real estate and home buying market changes constantly. We go from buyer's market to seller's market, too much inventory to not enough inventory, easy credit to tight credit and so much more. When you are looking at buying or selling - having current information is so very important. Today. we look at the market from the buyers side. And, just a reminder - you can get our free Buyer Guide for more information

Number of Buyers Putting Down Less Than 10% Hits 7-Year High

WOW - things are easing up a bit since the great crash. If you are looking to get into your own home and enjoy the lifestyle and benefits, it is time to take a serious look. Prices go up, rates go up - waiting gets expensive! Have a look at today's report

Top 5 Reasons Why Millennials Choose to Buy

The number one reason is to control their own living space. It is an investment you can live in. Stocks, bonds, gold and other investments do not put a roof over your head. Learn more reasons Millennials buy

More Than Half of All Buyers Are Surprised by Closing Costs

That even comes as a shock to me! Until I think back to my earlier days and before we bought our first house. There was the day of reckoning and OMG! Too bad we do not have a more in depth courses in high school - about how to buy a home and what to expect. Somehow, we survive it and home buying still happens. What to know

4 Reasons to Buy a Home This Fall!

Actually, that headline can be changed to "4 Reasons to Buy a Home NOW!" It does not matter. If you look at the reasons to buy, they apply to the "here and now". Seriously, there are valid reasons to jump in and become a homeowner. It is a lifestyle. So, call me - Al

Vintage Oaks - New Braunfels

Last Thursday, we visited Vintage Oaks, a great developing community in New Braunfels. If you like Texas Hill Country living, this is an area you may want to include on your must see list. There are more than a dozen builders and lots of choices. If you are not yet working with a Realtor, I would be glad to meet you there and visit the model homes. Here are 3 model homes we visited

Monticello Homes

Perry Homes

Scott Felder Homes

Esperanza in Boerne

We have featured builders in Esperanza in previous posts. If you have not yet visited, Esperanza (Spanish for Hope) is a planned community in Boerne just northwest of San Antonio. There are a half dozen builders offering homes in villages within the community from roughly 300 to one million. Each has its own unique style and characteristics. Yesterday, we visited the Village of Loma Linda and one of San Antonio's premier custom home builders, Mike Hollaway.

Mike Hollaway Builders has an impeccable reputation for stunning design and quality built luxury homes. We toured three of them. If you are in the market for a new luxury home in the Boerne area, we would be glad to arrange an appointment for you. Call me, Al

Mike Hollaway and listing agent, Tamara Strait

The UNthinkable Happened - RENTING an Apartment!

Well, for those of you who are regulars here, you know my preaching about ownership vs renting - and all the reasons why! Last month I became an apartment renter. Yeap -for real. This is the first time I am renting an apartment since ____ (a long time ago - I think dinosaurs might have been running around outside). The house went faster than expected and I needed somewhere to live. So, we will try apartment living and report on it during the coming year. It is a different lifestyle and critics will no longer be able to say I have not done it. So, stay tuned for more posts right here at the San Antonio Real Estate Blog.

It's About Your Dreams

Hearth just released their 2017 State of the American Dream report.

Overwhelmingly, the statistics validate that across generations and demographics, Americans hold homeownership near and dear to what has become known as the "American Dream". We are a country of many freedoms - the right to own a home and the opportunity to own a home is not guaranteed in many nations. I personally hope America never changes. Have a look at today's report

Happily Ever Homeowner

Would you give up the big wedding in favor of a nice down payment on your own home? Many couples do that to leap ahead of the rental years and begin building the nest. That is a personal choice only you can make! The greatest number of first time buyers are married couples and that is pretty much the norm. But many unmarried couples are also buying as are singles and for good reason. Homeownership offers tax savings and increased wealth. It is a savings and investment plan that you can live in! Women are in the lead on singles who are buying (men, what are you thinking?). More Happily Ever

Know What You Want vs. What You Need

A Dream Home can be defined in many ways. Your perception of a dream home may clash with the reality of the pocket book. Dreams and goals are good. But, reality is an affordable home that does not break the bank! When buying, whether it is a first home or a new home for experienced buyers, the majority of us have a budget. Plan the budget and find a home with the basics or "must haves". Then consider the "nice to haves" and even the "wish list" and if you find a home with some of the extras and still within budget - go for it! Some years ago America learned its lesson about over buying. It is an important lesson to keep in mind. No need to keep up with the Joneses. Enjoy your own Dream Home

Your Home’s Value

How Your Home’s Value Grows Your Family’s Wealth

The experts predict that home values will increase around 18% by the end of 5 years from now. Have a look at the numbers - but in simple terms, a home of $250,000 in 2017 is expected to be worth around $298,000 in five years! Let's suppose you purchase that home in 2017 with 10% down (not necessary, just keep the math here simple). So, you invested $25,000 - had a nice place to live - and in 5 years you make almost $50,000 on your 25,000. Not a bad deal. Ready to buy now? Call me - Al

Do You Know Your Home’s Value?

Home prices have rebounded - big time! Have you checked with a real estate professional recently? You may be surprised at how much equity you have. Almost 80% of the US homeowners have significant equity and home prices are about 50% higher than the lows of 2011. If you are ready to make your next move, now is a great time to look at the numbers. Have a look at today's report

How Supply and Demand Impacts Real Estate Home Values

Anytime there is less than a 6 month supply of homes on the market is considered a seller's market. If you are a regular reader, you know supply has been hovering around 4ish! The demand during a period of short supply pushes prices up. Check it out

Millennial Homeownership

Somehow Millennials have come to be known as the “renter” generation. But the facts are the homeownership rate for American households age 34 and under is now over 35% and homeownership numbers are expected to increase.

Millennials are clearly the most educated generation to ever exist in the United States and indications are the higher the education, the increased likelihood of ownership. Earnings typically associated with higher education makes homes more affordable. We can expect great things from this generation as they come of age. Recent headlines exclaimed the homeownership rose in the second quarter of 2017 and Millennials proved to have the highest increase of any age group! Read more

Some Millennials became homeowners years earlier and - It May Be Time to Sell

Imagine that - the young generation ready to move on to their next home, perhaps larger or more upscale. These folks bought at the right time to enjoy the increased appreciation of the housing recovery and now may likely have an equity sufficient enough to make that move up. And, now is the time to do that. Home prices are looking to move up and interest rates are too. That means higher payments or less house in the future. Read more about why now is a good time to sell

For more on purchasing power, check out the charts

Where Are Home Prices Heading in The Next 5 Years? simple - UP!

The expectations are reasonable, not crazy inflation. A survey of over 100 leading economist projects growth of 3% to 5% yearly. That means your investment is expected to grow and equity increase. But if you are not a homeowner it will make an eventual purchase more expensive! Have a look at today's report

We have special guides for Millennials - have a look

Disaster Preparedness & Recovery

Be sure to check out our brand new page in this blog:

Disaster Preparedness & Recovery

All About Selling

14,904 houses sold yesterday, 14,904 will sell today, and 14,904 will sell tomorrow.

Those numbers come from the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) latest Existing Home Sales Report which also revealed that there is currently only a 4.2-month supply of inventory available for sale (6-months inventory is considered ‘historically normal’). This IS a great time to be a seller! But, if your home has not sold ask your agent representative to go over the many reasons you are still on the market. Most often, price is one of those reasons

96% of buyers who used the internet when searching for homes purchased their homes through either a real estate agent/broker or from a builder or builder’s agent.

Everyone wants the "best price". Think about it - if you are the seller, you want to receive the best price you can for your home. If you are the buyer, you want to buy the home for the best price you can. It is the agent who brings the two sides together with the minimum of hassle. Achieving the best deal is a win-win for both sides. Read more on that

Top 5 A+ Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Pro

It is about the professional training, the licensing requirements, the ongoing education, and the experience. Find out about the 5 reasons

FSBOs Don’t Save Real Estate Commission.

If you are a regular follower - how many times have we discussed this one? It may seem logical that eliminating the real estate commission is a way to pocket extra cash, but it is proven not to work. A few lines above we discussed that both sides want the "best price". So the buyer thinking you are saving the real estate commission wants it "since you are not paying it" and you think the very same thing. Maybe the thought is split the savings - and, everyone will have thoughts on how that should work too. And, even if all that worked - did you price your home right? There a reasons to go to a specialist. Some of them were stated above. Check it out

20 Tips for Preparing Your House for Sale

Not all of these tips may apply to you but the objective is the same. If you are selling, your real estate professional will guide you toward preparing your home for the market. Seriously - appearance is important starting with the first impression when folks pull up or drive by the very first time. For more on those 20... some really great ideas

Empty Nesters - Remodel or Sell? I am going to call this one a very personal decision. And I am going to share the reason why.

If the decision is simply a financial one, it is relatively easy. To cut expenses, downsize - or possibly relocate. If the cost of staying is not an issue, the decision gets a little more complex. Stay because of emotional attachment and family history, changing nothing or stay and remodel?

It is a very personal decision. If I had this discussion with my grandparents, they would choose to stay put. They would not remodel - they would hold on to family memories of their children and their grandchildren. They might change colors when painting, but not much else outside the comfort zone. Often, the home would be passed on to the next generation with the expectation that it would remain in the family.

In our more modern culture there is less attachment. Families are more mobile and often relocate moving on an average of 8 years. So when the nest is emptied decisions are influenced by other personal choices and there is no right or wrong. If you do decide to stay, there may be a temptation to remodel. One must be careful to not remodel "beyond the neighborhood" and be prepared to get a return of about 64 cents on the dollar spent on remodeling. Not a good return financially - but if you really WANT TO! More on the report

Watching My Investment - uhm, GROW!

OK - so I ordered a beanbag - simple, inexpensive "furniture". Ever see the episode of "I Love Lucy" where Lucy baked bread and it grew and grew and grew.... the beanbag instructions said cut and release from the plastic bag and it will grow - they were right, it grew

Buyer Guide - Seller Guide Fall 2017

Well, they are not officially released yet, but if you would like a pdf copy now, email me. Be sure to let me know which one (s) you want - or all of them if you wish and in English or Spanish. Get 'em while they are hot