Sunday, January 28, 2018

Considering Selling? ACT NOW!

Now is the Perfect Time

Beat the rush! Many folks do not list during the holidays and then hold off in January and February, perhaps postponing until late March or April. That delay is exacerbating the shortage of available homes that has been an issue for the market for months! It is a window of opportunity for savvy sellers to jump in and take advantage of the market – it IS a seller’s market. Have a look at the chart. The most popular months for listing a home is April, May and June. Ready to get ahead of the crowd? A buyer will like you for it!


Gap Narrows to Lowest Mark in 2 Years

FINALLY – light at the end of the tunnel. The gap between what homeowners thought their house is worth and what appraisers thought the house is worth is getting narrower. So, what happened? Well, it is quite a combination actually. Some homeowners did not realize how much equity they had gained in the rising market. Others have relaxed their values and are being realistic to market conditions. Appraisers were challenged by the lack of comparables in the rising market and low inventory. The market remains short on available homes, but there are more comparables (closed transactions) for appraisers to use in their evaluations. It is getting closer!


New Tax Code Impact on Home Values

The sky is not falling – nor is the roof rising. The best predictions are that the new tax code will have a negligible impact on home prices. Checkout the chart for estimates in your state.


Where Did Americans Move in 2017?

Quite a few states had a heavy outbound population relocating to other areas. Some states were on the receiving side with more newcomers. However, the majority of the states seem pretty much balanced. Have a look at the chart to see how your state has been impacted.


Considering Selling, ACT NOW!!

2017 finished as a great year for home sales – homes sales were higher than in a decade - and the momentum is still there! The predictions for 2018 are more of the same. Positive news. However, the housing market inventory is down even from last year! The shortage of homes continues – and that affects sales negatively. The opportunity for sellers remains. It will not last forever.


Impact of Staging Your Home

Did you know that more than 50% of staged homes received a 1 to 10% increase in dollar offers from buyers? That is only the measure of hard dollars resulting from staging. It is much more difficult to quantify, but staged homes draw more potential buyers and likely score a sale sooner. Buyers like staging because it helps them visualize themselves in the home – with no clutter in the way! Buyer agents and Seller agents agree – the benefits of staging make it worth the small investment to get it done. Have a look at the chart to see just how much that can mean to you! Staging is a great way to begin the sale of your home!


Sunday, January 21, 2018

Wondering If You Can Buy Your First Home?

Ready To Buy Your First Home?

Are you on the sideline because you are unsure if you can qualify to buy a home? The sideline is not the place to be. Bottom line is you do not go for it, you just will not know. The sad thing is that there is a lot of information out there that is either old or just plain wrong. It has gotten much easier to qualify. We will address that in the next few paragraphs. Before you continue reading, have a look at the chart in today’s report (just click on the link above). Then, continue reading and get the latest information so you can begin the journey to buying your first home. (If you are reading this a few years from now, check our more current posts because we are going to keep on reporting about buying a home)


Majority of First-Time Buyers Put Down Less than 6%

Did you know that 61% of first time buyers actually put down LESS than 6%? That is one reason you should not disqualify yourself if you think more is required. There is incorrect information floating around that you must have 20% down – and that is simply not true! Again, sounding like a broken record – you will not know if you do not try! And, today is a good day to try. We will help.


Scores on Approved Home Loans Drop Again

Lower credit scores are being qualified too! It is not crazy like it was just before the market meltdown, but it is lower requirements than just a short time ago. This one is going to fluctuate so we are going to go back to the point being – go for it! That is how to find out if you qualify and if you don’t, what you need to do so that you can.


New Low in 2017 For The Time on Market

Time on market is at a new low and that means there are more folks buying and qualifying than there are houses becoming available to buy. It also means prices are being pushed higher (supply vs demand). It also suggests that action is required to become an owner and use the price increases to increase your personal wealth. Unlike money in the bank that pays you interests only on the amount in the bank, a home earns appreciation on the total value of the home. You may invest $10,000 in a home priced at $150,000 but you will be earning appreciation on the $150,000. The bank would only pay you interest on the $10,000!


Rising Prices Will Help You Build Wealth in 2018

Checkout todays’ report (click the link above) and find out how a house starting at $250,000 becomes a house of almost $295,000 in five years! Now what does THAT do your four personal wealth? Start in 2018 and grow your future – become a homeowner!


Vast Majority of Americans Believe Homeownership Is Important in Attaining the American Dream

America is said to be a melting pot – and IMO – we are! It means there are a lot of different opinions out there and on many different subjects! Getting Americans to agree close to 100% on something is no easy accomplishment. Yet, 93% of us fully agree that Homeownership is important in achieving the American Dream. Are you ready to fulfill your dream? Call me, Al.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

What Stays With The House

Often times we are asked, what must I leave behind and what can I take with. The Texas Association of REALTORS has created this one page summary to guide you.

If you are thinking about selling (or buying) we can help: https://sanantonio.homes/fine/real/estate/marketeval

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Why List Today

Tight Inventory on the Housing Market Has An Impact

Check out all the resources listed in the report (use link above). I am often asked if there is a shortage – and the answer is simply – YES! This is especially true at the lower price points and that creates a great opportunity for move ups!

New home construction can only create X number of homes per year. If X is lower than demand, then there is increased pressure on the market. There are buyers out there now! If you are thinking about using the equity that you have built up in your home and want to reinvest that equity – now is the time to explore


34 Days! - Median Days on the Market Drops

Holy smokes! The median days on market has dropped to 34. THAT says there is a shortage of homes available for purchase – less than meets the market demand.

Nevertheless, not all homes will sell fast. It is not the “throw the bare hook in the water and catch a fish market”. You need to have your house priced right to sell. You also need to make your house marketable – the right look matters


Why Sell This Winter - 4 Reasons

Need a little more convincing? Besides the low inventory, there are other reasons to sell and move on. Checkout the report for 4 additional reasons to list your home now


Sales Reach Highest Annual Pace in 11 Years For Existing Homes

For those that have already decided to sell and have done all the right things, the news is good. No, not good – the news is great! Existing home sales are the highest annual pace in 11 years! That news kind of takes us full circle back to the short supply. The forecast going forward is more of the same. This is an opportunity. Will you make it yours


You Shouldn’t FSBO - And The Top 5 Reasons

If you are a regular here, you already know there are compelling reasons not to FSBO (for sale by owner). Much like any profession albeit a doctor or a plumber, somethings are best left to those who have all the training.

Statistically about 90% of the folks who try FSBO eventually turn to an agent. Studies have proven the FSBO net theory wrong. Your friendly REALTOR has the training to price right, screen clients, and absorb many of the headaches that can accompany a real estate transaction. That is what we do


Top Reason to List Your House Today!

We saved the best for last today! Many folks believe that waiting for spring is a good strategy. Well, more people may shop come spring, but there are real shoppers out there right now (more foot traffic than at any time in the last 5 years - see today’s report – link above). The demand is there. The demand is stronger because less houses are available. More houses will be available in spring. Your opportunity is now if you are ready to seize it


Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Saturday, January 6, 2018

What Is A Boomer To Do?

Plans Include a Move? What’s Stopping You?

Not unlike the stock market, real estate has its ups and down and thankfully, the real estate market has made a dramatic turnaround. Once again, most folks have positive equity in their homes. In the last year alone, depending on your area of the country, there have been some very substantial gains in value.

If you have been thinking about a change in lifestyle – perhaps having more freedom with a downsized home or even condo to escape the chores and maintenance expense that go along with home ownership – maybe it is time to look at selling your home and investing that appreciation. Your home equity can open doors for your next lifestyle choice!


Empty Nesters - Is It Best to Remodel or Time to Sell?

Parent minus children equal empty nesters. Is that you? What to do becomes the question. You could remodel to the needs of your current lifestyle however, you seldom recover the cost and may make changes that will lower the value of your home. Selling now in a seller’s market is another option and one that will probably bring you the greatest return on your investment.

Sometimes, moving on makes more sense. It is an opportunity to redefine your lifestyle and your needs. Closing doors simply means opening new ones. Time to enjoy life.


Home Prices Up Across the Country!

We have been talking about appreciation and improved equity – and how to best utilize it to provide what is right for you now. Have a look at the chart and then talk to your favorite real estate agent to find out the value of your home today. Curious?


Should I Downsize In This Seller’s Market Now?

Ride the wave of the seller’s market – repurpose your investment – enjoy life and all it has to offer! Up to you to decide if you really need the big home or if selling it nets out to more monthly cash available to do what you want to do. Think about it – a change that gives you $500, $1000, $1500, or more a month that is no longer needed to maintain a home. What does that do for you?

I am working with someone right now – not as her agent, but as her friend and letting a local agent actually handle the transaction for her. When we are finished, she will have around $2000 a month in more spendable cash! She can do what she wants, visit her kids and the grands – and quite simply, not have to stress over what is going to need fix’n next. Thank on it. My point in sharing that with you is simple. I live what I share here, this is not hype!


Boomers Buy or Rent after Selling?

To buy or to rent – and that IS the question. It requires your personal answer. If you are staying in your hometown, the decision is less risky. You look at your situation and decide if financially and freedom of responsibility is better one way or the other. If you are relocating, then I strongly urge you to rent the first year. Make sure you have chosen the right area (vacations there do not necessarily give you an informed decision making background) – and if it is the right area, a year to explore will let you make a comfortable choice about neighborhood. You do want to get it right – right?


The Top 5 Benefits of Hiring an Agent

So why hire a professional? Well, for one thing – that is how we make a living. OK, just kidding here – while that is true, this article, this blog is about you. And, now may be a good time to answer the question about why I write this blog in the first place and the reason is the same one at the top of the list on why you should hire an agent.

To help the Sellers and the Buyers understand the process! To educate. To facilitate.

Now, enough about me. You can find the benefits described in the article – just click on the green link above. If there are other subjects you would like me to write about, let me know. You can even call me if you want. I did not used to be an agent – my background is business. Let’s do business now in real estate!



Thursday, January 4, 2018

Instant Offers

"Instant Offers" - the latest real estate rage! But are they good for you?

In my opinion, NO. And I say that not as a real estate agent but as a person who has bought and sold homes and investment property of my own (even before getting into the real estate business). The purveyors of the concept are on a campaign to convince folks that professionals are either not necessary or can be reduced to a lesser participation. The pitch is that there is an opportunity to save you from high real estate fees. People who try FSBO (for sale by owner) once thought that too - yet close to 90% find it to be a bad idea and hire a professional to get the job done. Would you want to gamble on what may be your largest single investment? Do you think it is a good idea to be a DIY doctor? lawyer? accountant? - how about firefighter? (hmmm - is there an app for putting out fires?) How about all the "fires" that may result from purchasing real estate?

Who could benefit from instant offers? At the top of the list would be Investors. What a great concept for paying less than a professionally handled listing may cost. Investors (who, unless they are just starting - have the advantage of knowing how to "invest" and turn a profit - your profit). Next on the list would be the stressed property owner who has an absolute need to get rid of a property sooner rather than later. Of course, your real estate professional is likely to be able to help there too!

I suppose "Instant Offers' platforms could become the eBay for homes. Then again, I have already seen homes for sale on eBay. That did not seem to catch on and maybe folks just agree that professionals do it better!