Real Estate Tips
We are now seeing record high selling prices for homes in many markets of California and the nation.
The sky high home values that seemed unbelievable back in 2007 have now been eclipsed in many of the larger markets of the state. The markets in the Bay Area now boast the highest values and record fast sell times.
- Employment is strong throughout the state. In all coastal counties, the unemployment rate is now at the full employment level, meaning that job opportunities are relatively abundant and wages are rising.
- The average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage was 3.83% this week — significantly below the 5% to 6% range during the 2005 to 2007 “bubble” years.
- In fear of facing higher interest rates because of overt statements by the Federal Reserve to push rates higher in a measured fashion, demand for mortgages has increased.
- Because consumer confidence in March was at its highest level since 2000, people in general are feeling very confident about their employment prospects, their future income prospects, and the stability of the economy right now.
- The financial market composite indices are at or near all time record highs. Households owning financial assets are feeling more wealthy today than during the previous 10 years.
Click HERE for the full article.
In real estate markets near and far, growth is abundant and it looks like it will continue that way for at least a bit!
According to National Mortgage Professional Magazine, “… Sky-high potential price gains may be finally prompting more homeowners to sell.” This is fantastic news for sellers and buyers alike. Movement increases inventory. Inventory increases a buyers choices. We all like choices! The unique and distinctive properties available on the market right now are not to be missed!
Announcing our new monthly newsletter: Polished. Click HERE for a ton of information, including a 2017 National Housing Forecast.
Happy New Year!
I wanted to share with you the latest information of the South Bay new home sales from 2016. Also, see what 2017-2018 holds for new home pipeline.
Happy New Year!
CoreLogic reported in late December that home buying saw the fastest November in more than four years even though the month’s sales totaled 7.5% below 1988 month average. The surge in sales increased what buyers paid. Our relatively robust local job market created more job opportunities along with pay hikes nationwide. Fewer absentee buyers were reported. Mortgage financing was not used in 21% of the deals.
For full report, click HERE!
“Existing-home sales rebounded strongly in September and were propelled by sales from first-time buyers reaching a 34 percent share, which is a high not seen in over four years, according to the National Association of Realtors®. All major regions saw an increase in closings last month, and distressed sales fell to a new low of 4 percent of the market.”
Click HERE for complete article, plus inside market info!
This South Bay Beach Cities market video shows new construction sales, new home pipeline, and a year over year comparison from the early 2000s.
Market insight is the essential ingredient in all of the services I offer. I answer the question “How is the market?” By monitoring real estate trends and statistics, I’m able to help you make critical decisions…all while giving you valuable information on an ever changing housing market!
Renovating, remodeling, and improving your home can be great ways to give it a makeover, gain extra space, or otherwise make it possible for you to stay in one place longer. But will they increase your selling price? Owners of older homes dream of updating or modernizing kitchens and baths. In fact, before they place their homes on the market, some folks go to all the effort to update the kitchen they’ve been meaning to redo for years … only to have someone else enjoy it. The challenge can be when the update is for the purpose of increasing your home’s marketability or resale value. In that case, does the renovation really pay off? Here are some things to consider before you tackle that upgrade or renovations just to sell your property. When it adds value: Anything that increases your usable square footage adds value to your home. So, if you finish a basement or an attic space, add a wing or just extend a single room, that extra space and increase your home’s market value. Adding a bathroom or bedroom is a substantial improvement that changes a home’s category. A three-bedroom home with three full baths has more market value than a similar home with only two baths, or two bedrooms. The biggest bang for you buck, however, can come from making some simple changes. Consider this: a new front door, on average, adds up to 96.6 percent of the amount you will spend on it to the value of your home. Of course, you’ll need to pay attention to which door will enhance your home and which might look like an afterthought, but the right new door adds instant curb appeal. In fact, even painting the front door can bring a significant improvement (without the extra expense of replacing it). Other improvements, such as replacing windows or worn and discolored siding can yield a greater return than an expensive kitchen remodel. Minor kitchen upgrades, on the other hand, can add back over 82 percent to the value of what you spend on them. A “minor” kitchen upgrade can be as simple as new cabinet doors and hardware, or new appliances, an updated counter surface and sink, or new fixtures. When it’s not worth it: A $100,000 kitchen remodel on a $600,000 home will yield anywhere near that additional value to your home, especially if all of the other homes in the neighborhood are in the same price range. So, if you upgrade it while you’re living in it because your love to cook and want the perfect kitchen … the value is your enjoyment of the upgrade. Don’t expect it to increase your home’s resale value by that much though when the time comes to sell. When it doesn’t pay off: If you increase the value of your home while you continue to live in it, realize that you may be increasing your tax basis as well. A new assessment of your home may increase your taxes and cause it to be more expensive to live there. Simple improvements such as adding a garden shed can trigger a reassessment in some localities, while moving a wall or putting in an additional bath or bedroom most certainly will. Before you take on an improvement, addition or upgrade for the purpose of increasing your home’s marketability, talk to your local professional real estate agent. She can discuss with you the potential ramifications of the changes you want to make, the return on your investment and whether or not it could trigger a tax assessment and property valuation increase.
With the national elections ramping up, many voters already have voter fatigue (also called voter apathy). That is, we’re already so tired of hearing about the elections that we don’t bother to vote at all. In fact, voter apathy is quite high in the United States: Somewhere between a third to a half of eligible voters do not vote in national elections and even fewer vote in local elections.
But, “the likelihood that a homeowner will vote in a local election is 65%, compared to 54% for renters” and they are 3% more likely to vote in national elections than renters.
Here’s why not voting is a bad idea:
- Local elections can affect the marketability of your home
The value of your home is determined by a variety of factors, one of which is the rating of the local schools and another is the infrastructure of the community (the age and condition of the bridges, roads, drainage, street lights and other municipal projects). When a municipal bond issue comes up for vote, the outcome can affect both your bottom line through property and sales taxes, and the community desirability via new roads, better schools and protection from flooding (for example).
- National elections can affect home prices
The affect on home sales prices is not because of the specific outcome of the elections, but because consumers become more nervous about the economy during election years. When larger blocks of homeowners vote, they are placing their trust in the economy and the expectation that home values will rise.
- Direct effect on property taxes:
Some propositions have direct effect on your property taxes and the sharing or distribution of municipal expenses. For instance, in an upcoming election in Texas, directly changes the amount that a homeowner is able to exempt from property taxes (the homestead exemption) and makes that change a constitutional amendment … meaning that it takes another vote of the State’s entire electorate to change it. You might think that this would raise marketability to non-child families and lower marketability to families with children, but proponents believe that instead, it will increase home values across the board, thereby increasing tax revenue to schools.
One aspect of participating in local elections is that the homeowner gets to know what is important to other people in their community. Being part of a community is one of the benefits of homeownership. Connecting with your neighbors to improve your schools, streets and bridges can bring a sense of civic pride and camaraderie to your neighborhood.
As your local real estate professional we can indicate which areas in your neighborhood adversely affect the market value of your home. If you can help improve those things now, you should, so that when you’re ready to sell, your home’s value is at its highest.