Posted by: Marvin Remmich | December 5, 2016

Benefits of Listing Your Home Over the Holidays

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When it comes to putting a home on the market, the majority of people believe it is always best to list during the spring and summer months. While it is true that these are the most busy seasons for real estate transactions, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is always the most beneficial time to sell. There are certain benefits of selling a home during every time of year, and here are some of the main benefits of listing your home over the holidays!

Fewer competing listings- During the holiday season, most home sellers stop paying attention to their listings, and oftentimes take them off the market. This means you will have fewer homes to compete against, and your home will get a larger share of the attention of potential buyers.

Your listing feels more like home during showings- The key to landing an offer during open houses and private showings is to allow potential buyers to be able to imagine themselves living in your home. There is no better time to make your listing feel like home than during the holiday season. You can decorate the exterior and interior of your home, light a fire, bake some holiday cookies, and really show off the cozy potential of your listing during this time of year.

Potential buyers have more free time to view homes- During the holiday season, buyers will be working less, and be more available to come see your listing. If a buyer is able to focus more on buying a home, you may be able to make a deal more quickly. The holiday season will allow you to get more of a buyer’s undivided attention because they will be less distracted with work obligations.

Buyers tend to be more serious- If someone is looking for a home during the holiday season, the chances are high that they need one sooner rather than later. The spring and summer months tend to draw a lot of buyers that are just casually browsing listings, but aren’t in any hurry to buy. On the other hand, people searching for homes in the winter often need a place to live as soon as possible. That is really helpful for sellers because a more serious buyer will be willing to make a deal more quickly, and that can result in fast offers for you and less negotiation.

These are some of the main benefits of listing your home during the holiday season. If done correctly, every time of year has some fantastic benefits to sell or buy a home in. If you would like to learn more about how to make a great real estate transaction, contact us right away!

Posted by: Marvin Remmich | November 17, 2016

Tips for Showing a House When You Have Pets

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We know how important home showings are when you are selling a home. If you do not have things go well during a home showing, you may be costing yourself thousands of dollars on the offers you receive on your house. One area of concern when showing your home, is how having pets can affect the way potential buyers see your home. For us, a pet is a part of the family, but for the next owner, they may be a nuisance that causes damage to the appeal of the home. Here are some important tips for showing a house when you have pets.

1)  Make arrangements for your pet to stay- During a showing, it is important that your pet is not seen by potential buyers. Your best option is to have your pet stay with a loved one during the showing. However, if this isn’t an option, make sure they are crated and safely secured in an area that will not be seen throughout the viewing.

2) Clean up the yard- The condition of your yard plays a huge role in the value of your home to potential buyers. It is crucial to keep the yard pristine by picking up all animal waste, covering holes that have been dug, and fixing any damage your pet may have caused out there.

3) Address the pet smell- Our pets add a great deal to our lives. Unfortunately, one of the things they add is an odor to your home. We may not notice it because we are used to it, but an unfamiliar buyer will be able to detect it, and it may drastically reduce their interest in your home. Make sure to use odor eating products to clean up, and you may want to even hire a professional service to clean your carpets.

4) Remove signs of owning a pet- You want to appeal to as many potential buyers as possible when showing your home, so make sure to not showcase that you keep a pet in the house. Many people do not want to live in a home when they know that animals have been living there, so put away any toys, bowls, beds or other items that show you have a pet.

5) Remove pet hair- Many pets tend to shed, and this can make your home look messy if not dealt with. However, an even worse problem is that pet dander can trigger the allergies of potential buyers, and completely drive them away from your home. Make sure to do a great job vacuuming, dusting, and sweeping your home before a showing to get rid of all the pet dander.

Showing your home to potential buyers is one of the most important steps of the home buying process. By following these tips, you can help assure your beloved pets do not cause the value of your home to drop. To learn more about how to prepare your home for showings, contact us today!

Posted by: Marvin Remmich | October 5, 2016

INVESTORS EYE MORE REAL ESTATE ASSETS

Could real estate be the hottest trend in investing? While the concept itself isn’t new, confidence and intrigue in this investment strategy are high according to recent findings from a national survey of U.S. investors by Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, which found 89 percent of U.S. investors surveyed are interested in incorporating real estate into their investment strategies. The results also revealed that 80 percent of U.S. investors surveyed believe a real estate portfolio is one of the best financial legacies they could leave for their family

Posted by: Marvin Remmich | October 4, 2016

5 Common Regrets Homeowners May Have

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Buying a home is a huge decision that will greatly impact your life. If you make a mistake during this process, it may come back to haunt you for an extended period of time. Be prepared and cautious during the home buying process to make sure you do not have regrets in the future. Here are some of the most common regrets homeowners have after purchasing a home.

1) Agreeing with every demand a seller makes- Oftentimes, a buyer will be so desperate to close on a home that they will agree with all of a seller’s terms, even if they are detrimental to the buyer. Never be so desperate for a home that you make poor financial decisions. If a seller is not willing to work with you, and create a fair deal for both parties, walk away. If you do not walk, you may end up regretting it later.

2) Not buying the right size home- When buying a home, it is important to try to anticipate how many bedrooms and square feet you will need. Many people anticipate that they will have a lot of children, and buy a home far too big for their current situation. Always remember that you can buy a larger home in the future if you end up having a large family down the road. On the flip side, do not buy a small home when you are planning on having a lot of people under the roof in the near future. Try to think ahead to what is realistic, and find the middle ground of the size home you should have.

3) Not accounting for the small details- Sometimes people overlook the small details of a home because they fall in love with one they view. When viewing homes, bring a list of all the features you need, and one for the features that would be nice to have. This will give you something to review when looking back at multiple homes you viewed. Remember that lacking many small details can add up into something huge.

4) Not accounting for location- Location is everything when buying a home, so make sure you buy in the right area. Try to account for your commute to work, proximity to schools (even if you don’t have kids yet), amenities nearby, and how the neighborhood is projected to grow in the future. Do your research, and try to buy in an area that should rise in value over time.

5) Waiting too long to look for a new home- Many people wait to start searching for a new home until they absolutely must move right away, and this is a big mistake. There is nothing worse than being rushed during the home buying process because you will likely make bad decisions out of desperation. Make sure to start looking into the home buying process long before your lease runs out, or you outgrow your current living situation.
These are some of the common regrets home buyers have after purchasing a house. If you have some forethought, and think clearly during your real estate transaction, you can avoid these mistakes and be thrilled with your home purchase decision. If you would like to learn more about how to make a great decision during a real estate transaction, contact me today!

Posted by: Marvin Remmich | September 21, 2016

Things to be Ready For When Renovating Your Home

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Renovating your home can be a fantastic idea that will make your house more valuable, livable, desirable, and appealing for yourself and potential buyers. However, when preparing for a renovation while you are still living in your home, it is crucial that you are prepared for some of the potential negatives of this situation. Here are some of the things you need to be ready for when you are renovating your home!

1) It will be stressful at times- When renovating your home, it will not always go perfectly as planned. There will be times where the process is frustrating, and you will be stressed out at points during the process. It is important to go into the renovation understanding that this can happen, and making sure to keep your calm during stressful situations. It will be okay in the long run!

2) It may not always be on schedule- Renovations are one of those things that always seem to take longer than anticipated. Understand that there may be a chance your project goes past the schedule you expected, and there may not be too much you can do about it. If you go into the renovation understanding that this is a possibility, it will make it much easier to take if it actually happens.

3) You may go over budget- Sometimes renovation projects become more expensive than you originally expected. This is why it is crucial to allow a little bit of wiggle room in your budget, and what you can actually afford to spend without completely running out of money. With renovation costs, you must always prepare for the unexpected.

4) Your normal home life will be more strenuous- Living in a home in the middle of renovation can be far from convenient. It will be loud with the noises of hammering and sawing. It will be messy with what seems like endless amounts of dust, rubble, tools, and tarps. There will be people in your home throughout the day. All of this can make it very difficult to relax while you are at home, so make sure you are ready for this before you commit to a renovation.

A renovation on your home while you are living in it can be difficult, but if you are prepared for the negatives in advance, you can greatly help your chances of making it a successful project. Just remember that while there will be difficult moments, there will be a lot of great ones too. People that renovate their homes in this fashion get to see the project come together, and become stronger in the process. Just make sure to throw a fantastic party in your newly renovated home to celebrate when you are done! If you would like to learn more about renovating your home in order to increase its value before listing, give us a call today!

Posted by: Marvin Remmich | April 22, 2016

Housing Outlook Stays Bright as Economic Forecast Darkens

Housing Outlook Stays Bright as Economic Forecast Darkens

forecastWhile the outlook for overall economic growth is darkening, the housing market is expected to keep up its momentum in 2016, according to Freddie Mac’s April 2016 Economic Outlook released on Friday.

Freddie Mac downwardly revised its forecast for Q1 GDP growth from 1.8 percent down to 1.1 percent. The “advance” estimate for GDP growth in the first quarter will be released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) on Thursday, April 28. The GDP grew at an annual rate of just 0.6 percent in the first quarter of 2015 but then shot up to 3.9 percent for Q2; for the third and fourth quarter, the real GDP grew at rates of 2.0 percent and 1.4 percent, respectively.

The first quarter for the last few years has been punctuated by slow economic growth. While some of this can be attributed to seasonality, Ten-X (then Auction.com) Chief Economist Peter Muoio said that last year’s dismal GDP showing in the first quarter could be attributed to the brutal winter which slowed economic activity, labor disagreements at a bunch of the West Coast ports that really slowed the flow of cargo in Q1, and low oil prices (though this was partially offset by lower gas prices which put more money in consumers’ pockets).

“We’ve revised down our forecast for economic growth to reflect the recent data for the first quarter, but our outlook for the balance of the year remains modestly optimistic for the economy,” Freddie Mac Chief Economist Sean Becketti said. “However, we maintain our positive view on housing. In fact, the declines in long-term interest rates that accompanied much of the recent news should increase mortgage market activity, particularly refinance.”

On the positive side, Freddie Mac expects the unemployment rate will fall back below 5 percent for 2016 and 2017 (last month it ticked back up to 5.0 percent after hovering at 4.9 percent for a couple of months). Reduced slack in the labor market will push wage gains above inflation, although the gains are expected to be only modest, according to Freddie Mac.

While the economic forecast for Q1 has grown darker, the forecast looks bright for housing in 2016, however.

“We expect housing to be an engine of growth,” Freddie Mac stated in the report. “Construction activity will pick up as we enter the spring and summer months, and rising home values will bolster consumers and help support renewed confidence in the remaining months of this year.”

Freddie Mac

Low mortgage rates have boosted refinance activity in the housing market during Q1. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate averaged 3.7 percent for the first quarter, which drove an increase for the 1-4 single-family originations estimate for 2016 up by $50 billion up to $1.7 billion. Rates are expected to bump up, however, and average 4 percent over the full year of 2016, according to Freddie Mac. House prices are expected to appreciate by 4.8 percent over 2016 and 3.5 percent for 2017; homeowner equity is expected to rise as a result of the home price appreciation, which could mean more refinance opportunities.

The low mortgage rates combined with solid job growth are expected to make 2016 the strongest year for home sales since the pre-crisis year of 2006 despite the persistently tight inventory of for-sale homes, according to Freddie Mac.

“Sales were slow in the first quarter, but trends in mortgage purchase applications remain robust and we expect home sales to accelerate throughout the second quarter of 2016 as we approach peak homebuying season,” Freddie Mac said.

Posted by: Marvin Remmich | January 6, 2015

California tiered home pricing

Home prices displayed mixed signals in Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Diego in the single month of October 2014. Prices dipped in San Diego, remained roughly level in Los Angeles and rose slightly in San Francisco. Low-tier property prices are still on average 10% higher than one year earlier. Mid-tier and high-tier prices are 6% higher.

As in 2010, today’s price movement is the tail end of a mini-bubble, set into motion some 18 months earlier. This price rise was produced by short-lived speculator interference in 2013 (not a tax stimulus, as in 2009). This pricing activity is under pressure from insufficient personal incomes, rising fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) rates and new construction.

Prices are expected to fall in the coming months, likely bottoming in mid-2016 and retreating toward the mean price trendline. The cooling of speculative fever and continually rising mortgage rates will prolong the falling trend in sales volume, pulling prices down in turn. Remember, real estate prices track and run with bond prices due to interest rate movement. A lag time of up to 12 months exists due to expectations of continued recent price movement — the sticky price phenomenon.

Posted by: Marvin Remmich | December 12, 2014

Burglary Statistics And Prevention 101

Before you go on vacation this holiday season, have you prepared against burglary? Do you store your valuables, close the blinds, lock the back door and so on? Many homeowners might be unaware of a string of burglaries in their neighborhood and come home to find their house broken into as a result.

Home burglaries account for $4.7 billion in property losses every year in the United States, because burglars find a way in.

<!–Start Growing Loyal Leads!–> According to statistics, a home burglary occurs every 13 seconds because someone forgot to lock a window or door — almost 30% of the time. With you going on holiday, make some home security investments to avoid inclusion in this statistic.
Posted by: Marvin Remmich | December 9, 2014

Zillow: Renting is twice as expensive as buying

Renting is now twice as expensive as buying, and mortgage payments as a percentage of buyer income is at historic lows

Posted by: Marvin Remmich | November 18, 2014

5 Real Estate Predictions for 2015

The new year could be a seesaw. Freddie Mac says the home-purchase market will improve with the economy, but there will be some stumbling blocks in the way of the housing recovery.

  1. Mortgage rates: Interest rates will likely be on the rise next year. In recent weeks, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage has dipped below 4 percent. But by next year, Freddie projects mortgage rates to average 4.6 percent and inch up to 5 percent by the end of the year.
  2. Home prices: By the time 2014 wraps up, home appreciation will likely have slowed to 4.5 percent this year from 9.3 percent last year. Appreciation is expected to drop further to an average 3 percent in 2015. “Continued house-price appreciation and rising mortgage rates will dampen affordability for home buyers,” according to Freddie economists. “Historically speaking, that’s moving from ‘very high’ levels of affordability to ‘high’ levels of affordability.”
  3. Housing starts: Homebuilding is expected to ramp up in the new year, projected to rise by 20 percent from this year. That will likely help total home sales to climb by about 5 percent, reaching the best sales pace in eight years.
  4. Single-family originations: Mortgage originations of single-family homes will likely slip by an additional 8 percent, which can be attributed to a steep drop in refinancing volume. Refinancings are expected to make up only 23 percent of originations in 2015; they had been making up more than half in recent years.
  5. Multi-family mortgage originations: Mortgage originations for the multi-family sector have surged about 60 percent between 2011 and 2014. Increases are expected to continue in 2015, projected to rise about 14 percent.

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