Many of our clients are asking for advice regarding the historically low interest rates we are enjoying right now. Granted, this is an amazing opportunity for many of you, and if you currently have a rate that is over 4 or 5%, we should really have a conversation. The question you will want to consider is this: what is your plan for the next 5 years?
Many of you are planning to stay in your home for another 5-7 years. Perhaps you just recently moved or you have no plans to move for many years. If this is where you see yourself, certainly, a refinance might be in order. Rates are indeed amazing!
On the other hand, if you are planning a move in the next 5 years, you would be wise to give us a call to discuss the implications of a refinance before jumping into the process. Refinancing is not without costs associated. Many times, these costs can be wrapped into the new loan, but they are still costs you will eventually pay. Because of this, we will want to evaluate the savings versus the cost of the refinance and determine the best financial move for you and your future.
We have a fantastic loan specialist who is happy to chat over these details with you, so do not hesitate to reach out if you have questions about your specific situation. We want to help you to make wise decisions where your home and loan are concerned and we are always here to help!
Whether you are selling, buying or staying put, you might be thinking about whether your home is still working for you. This time of staying at home, possibly working from home, and schooling children from home, has taught all of us to appreciate our homes and to better understand what we need in our home. As you consider your current home (or your dream home, for that matter!), what does it look like? What spaces are you using? What spaces could be better utilized or repurposed? Could a little bit of creativity and some time spent (and maybe a little bit of money) allow you to create spaces that work better for you in this unique time in history?
I want to encourage you to dream a little. Consider the spaces in your home. Could that guest room, that is very seldom used by guests, be dually purposed as an office space? Could the lower level rec room be split into a part rec and part homeschooling or distance learning space? How about the loft? Could this serve as a work from home station for part of the day?
As we consider what many are calling the “new normal,” more and more buyers are looking for office spaces and distance learning areas as a part of their search criteria; and if we get a little creative with the space each home offers, we can come up with new and innovative ways to make the best use of every floor plan.
If you are selling, I encourage you to consider strategically staging an office space in an area that makes sense for your floor plan. If you are buying, I encourage you to really consider the utility of each space that is on your wishlist and think creatively about how you might use each space. If you are staying put, perhaps you want to do an inventory of your current use of space (I know I am!) and consider whether each room is being used for its greatest good. If you need help getting into this mindset or preparing for your move, call us! We are always happy to help get you started, and we can get creative together.
Well, here we are. We are nearing the latter part of summer and the market is still going strong. Historically, we have noticed a slight slow down near the middle of July, and the market picks back up in September, but we are in a whole new world where real estate is concerned! With interest rates dipping lower and lower, prices inching higher and higher, and buyers jumping in at all price points, we have found a “new normal” yet again. The “new normal” is that the real estate market just keeps moving (no pun intended…).
According to our Twin Cities sales data, June sales were up 6% from this time last year and new listings are still not keeping up with demand.
This begs the question from many of our sellers: Do I have to (or should I) update a few things before hitting the market?
Answer: It depends (I know you love that answer!). One of the first questions we should answer in evaluating your specific situation is: “What are your goals?” If you are looking to net top dollar and are not bothered by a few to-do’s prior to listing, you will find that even small improvements will net you more money than the dollars you put into them, once you receive offer(s). And never fear! We have contractors and stagers that can help!
On the other hand, if you are looking to have a quick, low involvement sale and really would prefer to do NO improvement prior to listing, this is the market to do it in. With the low number of homes for sale, you have very good odds of selling well and netting a good sales price. Note, that this is a good sale price, not top dollar.
So, the question is really yours to answer and we can help advise you as you answer it. Many of our clients choose us because we are happy to come and discuss the implications of a few improvements versus no improvements where their listing is concerned. Which improvements will get us the best return/result when we list? Is it worthwhile to replace carpet now or offer an allowance? Should we repaint or leave it? Lots of questions, and we have answers. Give us a call and we are happy to help!
Well, here we are! Can you believe summer has come? The warm weather has certainly warmed up the real estate market. We are finding that as our economy starts opening up, real estate has never really closed down.
Sellers: This is an amazing time for sellers, as many who have contemplated selling have paused, due to the coronavirus threat. Many of the vulnerable population have decided to wait this out a bit or to move out of their new homes first and sell once they have vacated the property they are moving from. Therefore, those who have chosen to market their homes during this time are enjoying multiple offers and high demand for nearly all properties that are in good repair and ready for an eager buyer to call home. We may see inventory begin to rise as the lockdowns ease up and people start getting back to what “normal” will look like from here on out; yet we would have to see almost triple the inventory with no change in buyer demand to actually find ourselves in a shift to a more balanced market.
Buyers: This is an amazing time for buyers, as well, with the lowest interest rates we have ever seen in the market. Be aware, that as inventory remains low and interest rates remain low, prices will continue to rise, so this will become a factor in the buying decision of many who would like to enter the market at lower price points. We are finding nearly every well priced home in the under $300,000 market will likely see multiple offers. We like to educate buyers before they choose to enter this competitive market, so that they can be fully prepared for the tenacity and aggressive actions needed to secure a home, especially in the lower price ranges.
Your situation is unique. We want to help. If you are looking to make a move, give me a call and our team is happy to assist in every detail, from evaluating whether this is the right time for you to seller or buy (or both!), to the prepping of your home and mindset, to guiding you step by step through the process. We are always happy to help!
We have lots of clients calling us this month to ask us about timing their move from their starter home to a more spacious abode. Here are some of the points we are discussing, as we advise based on current market conditions:
Many of our clients are calling us early this year, as they are getting the “itch” to get moving on moving (did you get that?). Good move! As we start a new year and look at some of the changes in our market, I have been encouraging our clients to start planning now, so we can make sure they are educated and that they have a plan in place for that moment when they finally realize-It IS Time! So, what is going on in the market and how does it affect you?
As you have likely noticed, interest rates have crept up slightly from last year, and are hovering around that 5% mark. This is still being regulated by the Fed slightly, and we really should be up closer to around 6%. Will 6% happen this year? No one can say for certain, yet I would say that if you know your move is inevitable, we should get together and start planning sooner than later, as a 1% rate hike can certainly affect affordability in every price range (unless you have cash, of course!).
What about inventory?
Well, as we look at our stats that wrapped up 2018, we notice a few things. First off, our months supply is still a lowly 2.1 months of inventory overall. This is down 8.7% from the previous year. Remember, a balanced market is around 6 months of inventory, so it is still a great time for sellers.
Never fear, buyers! We are seeing more inventory, in most of our price ranges and areas, coming onto the market this winter. We should see more houses for you to choose from, if you are looking to make a move. Homes for sale is slightly down overall, yet in some of our mid to higher price ranges (think $300,000 and up), we have seen a 10.5% increase in listings. Good news, as this market shifts into 2019.
Overall, we are noticing a slight shift in the market, yet the outlook for 2019 is a positive one for those with a move on their radar. Every area within the Twin Cities is slightly different where these trends are concerned, so if you would like a more in depth look at YOUR area, we would love to share it with you. Give a call, shoot us a text or an email and we would be happy to spend some time with you discovering the best strategy around your plans this year!
We meet with clients who have all kinds of needs each season and one of the greatest needs they share with us is to understand the extent to which they need to prepare their home for listing. We often meet them months or even years before they actually plan to make a move. This has been a great opportunity, as we do believe that a picture perfect listing is not only guaranteed to sell, but it also sells for more money than the average “unprepped” listing. As the Market has turned toward favoring sellers, many agents are suggesting that sellers “just list it.” Though there are instances where the “just list it” method is employed, here is a short story that tells another perspective.
John and Jenny* were looking to make a move across town and they hired a local Realtor who seemed to sell a lot of property in the area. The Realtor came and evaluated the property, told them to just get it onto the market quickly, staging and details don’t matter… 30+ days later and no offer, not even many showings… John and Jenny are dismayed and wondering what they’d done wrong? They decided they wanted a change in representation and after several interviews, chose The Angela Sadat Group for their fresh perspective and team approach. Angela, her stager, handyman and the rest of the team got together and helped with suggestions and staging “on the spot” which led to a successful sale and closing just a few weeks later. The details mattered!
Just a few small tweaks can help your home to sell more quickly and for more money than the average listing. These preparatory steps can actually mean the difference between selling and not selling in certain sections of the market. Call us today and let us help you to win at the highest level in this market and put more dollars toward your next home-we’ll make it easy for you and promise smiles all around at closing!
(*Names changed for privacy)
How do you know if it is a good time to sell your rental property? Great question! We have had several clients that have called us this year to inquire as to the market conditions this spring/summer and whether now would be the time. Of course, my first inclination is to exclaim a resounding, “Yes!!! We have low inventory and you will get top dollar in this market!!!” Yet, we should really slow down just a moment and ask a couple of key questions before making such a decision…
Well, here we are again (finally!): Spring has arrived, the snow is melting and buyers and sellers are ready to go! If you are considering a move, you may have some trepidation as you look at statistics and news reports that tell the tale of “no inventory.” For this reason, we are going to reprise a few tips that we sent out around this time last year, as they are very applicable for those of you considering your move this year!
This is a fantastic “opportunity market” for many of you, so do not get frozen in logistics. Let us help! See below for where we start the conversation of “selling then buying” and the give us a call to discuss the details of your situation and to create a plan for success. Here we go:
Many of our clients are excited about the state of the market and yet they are questioning what happens if they find themselves in a multiple offer situation. Clearly multiple offers can be stressful for buyers as well as for sellers; let’s focus on the buyer side of things for now. You have found your perfect “place to call home” and you are ready to write that offer… Then… You find out there are other buyers who also want to call this property their home! Yikes! Well, fear not, there are several things we can do to make your odds of securing the home more likely!
1) Write it clean and be non-contingent. Coming in contingent, asking for closing costs and trying to get a better price in multiple offer situations is not advisable, in most cases. We always evaluate the market before writing an offer, and it is likely that if several buyers want the property, it is priced right.
2) Ask about preferred closing timeline. Does the seller have a preferred date for moving? Can you be flexible? This is a term that will often come into play when the seller reviews offers and if you can be flexible, you just might win!
3) Write a “love letter.” It can be seen by some as cheesy, but to a seller with a lot of emotion and many memories tied to the property, letting them know a bit about you and why you love the home can be a game changer (add a picture for extra effect!).
4) Hire a proactive buyer’s agent. A good agent will not just email over an offer with no word of explanation or rapport building. Listing agents want to know who they are going to be working with. A great buyer’s agent can build a relationship with the listing agent that will encourage them to feel comfortable working with them, and with your offer, over others that they know nothing about. They do not want the deal falling apart, so a proactive buyer’s agent shows they will work hard to make the transaction a smooth one.
5) Offer over list price?? Sometimes, when you know a property is possibly even under priced, or there is high competition, you may have to write your offer for over the listing price, if you are able. This is case by case yet can be a necessary step in winning. There are many other helpful tricks we use to win in multiple offer situations and each scenario is different. We endeavor to find out as much as we can ahead of time to ensure we are structuring the best and strongest offers for our clients and we have had great success in winning for our buyers! Call us today to find out how we can structure your move and make it a successful one where we handle all the details and close with smiles. 😊
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