Archive for the ‘Orlando homes’ Category

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What is a Housing Bubble? Is One Forming?

July 7, 2015

Bubble-2-KCM

The recent talk of Greece and its financial challenges has some questioning whether the U.S. could also return to the crisis we experienced in 2008. Some are looking at the rise in real estate values and wondering whether we are in the middle of another housing price bubble.

What actually is a price bubble?

Here is the definition according to Jack M. Guttentag, Professor of Finance Emeritus at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania:

“A price bubble is a rise in price based on the expectation that the price will rise. Sooner or later something happens to erode confidence in continued price increases, at which point the bubble bursts and prices drop. What makes it a price bubble is that the cause of the price increase is an expectation that the price will increase, which sooner or later must reverse itself.”

Does Professor Guttentag believe we are in another housing bubble?

In a recent article, he explained:

“My view is that we are a long way from another house price bubble. Home buyers, lenders, investors and regulators now understand that a nationwide decline in house prices is possible — because we recently lived through one.”

What are home prices doing?

Though home values are continuing to appreciate, the acceleration of the increases has slowed to year-over-year numbers which reflect a healthy housing market. Here is a chart showing year-over-year appreciation since January of last year:

Case-Shiller

We can see that appreciation rates have dropped from double digit numbers to more normal rates of 5% or lower.

Bottom Line

We think Nick Timiraos of the Wall Street Journal put it best in a recent tweet:

“Predictions of a new national home price bubble look unfounded for now, according to data.”

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Show me the money – from contract to close on a home…

July 16, 2013

In today’s real estate world…financing is critical. It is often the difference between deal or no deal. So, how do you make it work? There are a number of factors to consider:

1. Is the buyer’s lender local and reputable?
2. Has the buyer been pre-APPROVED?
3. Is there a significant down payment?
4. Will the house appraise?

Without a yes answer to the above questions, your contract could be in jeopardy. It is always important to work with a lender who properly qualifies prospects, No ambiguous language allowed on that pre-approval letter (look for the “out” clauses”)! Make sure you actually talk to the lender and find out the specifics on the borrower. Is the buyer putting down some funds…money talks in this market and deals are done when the buyer has contributed to the bottom line. Finally, is the home priced right? In today’s market…we don’t want to be a part of the problem. We have to be problem solvers!

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Holy cow – there are no homes to sell…

January 30, 2013

house sideways

Things have gotten a wee bit strange in real estate recently. There are simply too few homes for sale. I have buyers…lots of buyers actually but there is an absolutely nothing to show them. If you want a home in the $200,000 to $350,000 price range in a good area of Orlando then you had better be prepared to look a long time and jump on something the minute it becomes available. I’m seeing multiple offers on homes listed and anxious agents who want contracts signed before it is too late. There is definitely a sense of urgency in the Orlando real estate marketplace.

What does this mean? The economy is affecting homes listed for sale as potential sellers fear they won’t obtain fair market value for their home. The majority of homes for sale in Orlando remain short sales or foreclosures. We need to see the inventory of distress sales dwindle and more normal market conditions return.

What is normal? Who knows? But this certainly isn’t it.

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What’s happening in Orlando real estate?

July 1, 2012

What an interesting time in real estate. Homes ARE selling and I have had a great year to date. I’m grateful for that. But there is a lot of work to be done. In what direction are we moving as a nation?

The majority of homes sold are still distress sales. Homes that are NOT distressed (in foreclosure or short sale) are selling fast and furious. These homes are generally well cared for and the Seller can make a decision quickly. People are tired of waiting on banks and on being required to accept homes in shabby condition or AS IS without regard to repairs. I truly believe that buyers want to work with homes that they KNOW are well-maintained and show pride of ownership.

So who is buying distressed properties? Mostly investors with a lot of cash. Are we turning into a society of renters? Time will tell. I can tell you that there are a lot of people looking for rental homes. I probably get five to ten calls per day of someone looking for a rental house.

I am happy for the uptick in home sales but I will be happier when we see loans easier to obtain (even qualified buyers are unduly pressured during the loan process), appraisers realizing that the market is getting stronger and buyers not afraid to make decisions. WE NEED TO MOVE TOWARD A COUNTRY OF CONFIDENT CITIZENS.

I love our country as we approach this July 4th holiday and I pray that we will see our nation move in a positive direction with everyone working to the better good of our nation. May it be so.

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Show me the money…

May 15, 2011

If you have been reading my blogs then you would know this headline may be a bit misleading. It’s NOT really all about the money.

But when it does comes to money – people need to be smart. When I refer to people…I mean Sellers.

There used to be a thought process in selling real estate that the three things that mattered were PRICE, LOCATION and CONDITION. While it still remains true to some degree. I would argue that in our current market the ONLY thing that matters is PRICE.

The homes selling in the Central Florida area are priced right and priced to sell. That means short sales as well as non-distressed properties. In this market, your home has to be priced to compete. Sellers should understand why their home isn’t sold – it is most certainly going to come down to price. I have seen homes in the worst of condition that sell because they are priced to attract buyers. It is our job, as real estate sales educators to advise our clients accordingly. PRICE = SOLD.

Show them the money.

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One is the loneliest number

December 15, 2010

 

 

It’s that time of year – the time when everyone starts bombarding your email with solicitations for SEVEN ways to get rich, SIX steps for a better year, FOUR ways to get your home sold, THREE things you need to do to guarantee sales success. You get the picture. 

I don’t know who started this trend but the minute I see a number associated with an activity – I just zone out. I find the whole thing a little hokey. You want to be successful? ONE THING – WORK hard. You want more money? Work hard. You want happiness? Work hard. It’s really just that simple. 

We live in a culture that wants quick fixes to all our problems. That is simply not how life works although it would be nice in theory. To make your life successful you don’t need SEVEN secret tips…you just need to put one foot in front of the other toward your goal and make it work. I promise this is true. 

I have one suggestion for you today – decide to be succesful and happy and WORK hard to make it so.

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Is the grass greener?

February 5, 2009

Survey Finds Grass Is Greener on the Other Side

The results of a survey exploring attitudes related to where Americans would like to live show that the grass is definitely greener on the other side of the fence.

About 46 percent of people would prefer to live in a different type of community from the one they live in now, the survey by the Pew Research Center’s Social & Demographic Trends found. That sentiment was most common among urban dwellers.

But the desire to move elsewhere doesn’t stop people from appreciating their current locale. About 80 percent rank their current communities as excellent, very good or good. Both the 63 percent who have moved at least once and the 37 percent who have lived in the same place all their lives are equally satisfied with their current locations.

Other findings include:

  • Americans are all over the map in their views about their ideal community type: 30 percent say they would most like to live in a small town, 25 percent in a suburb, 23 percent in a city and 21 percent in a rural area.
  • About 75 percent of Americans say they prefer living where the pace of life is slow, not fast. A similar majority prefers a place where neighbors know each other well to one where neighbors don’t generally know each other’s business.
  • About 65 percent say they prefer to live in a hot-weather climate rather than a cold one.
  • Fast food gets the nod with 43 percent preferring to live in a place with more McDonald’s outlets vs. the 35 percent who would rather have more Starbucks shops.

Asked to rank cities where they would live if they could, nearly everyone chose warm weather locations in the South or the West. Here are their top 15 picks:

1. Denver, 43 percent
2. San Diego, 40 percent
3. Seattle, 38 percent
4. Orlando, 34 percent
5. Tampa, 34 percent
6 San Francisco, 34 percent
7. Phoenix, 33 percent
8. Portland, Ore., 31 percent
9. Sacramento, 29 percent
10 .San Antonio, 29 percent
11. Boston, 28 percent
12. Miami, 28 percent
13. Atlanta, 26 percent
14. Washington, DC, 25 percent
15. New York, 24 percent

Source: Pew Research Center (01/29/2009)

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Household Tips

July 28, 2008

by Linda Hutchinson

I am here today to share some household tips with you. OK…not the kind of tips you would expect.  To be honest. I don’t do dishes, don’t cook and have help around the house. Too much darn real estate to sell out there and I couldn’t care less what stain peroxide will remove.

But I do want to give you some buying tips for finding just the right house for you:

  1. Get pre-qualified. This is important. Too often I have buyers who come in ready to purchase a home and they think they know their price range. In today’s lending world, you have to sit down with an expert and talk to your lender. They can assess your financial situation and let you know, quickly, at what price point you will be comfortable. Surprisingly enough, it’s usually not the home price that matters. It is how much cash you have to put down and how much you have to pay per month.
  2. Narrow your search. There are so many listings in Orlando and many of them are luxury homes and many of them are homes in the $250,000 range. I have NEVER seen so many homes under $300K that were this high quality. If you were wondering if you could afford a nice home in the low $200K range…now is the time. They are out there and they are fabulous. BUT…you have to know where you want to live. Looking all over God’s green earth will only confuse you and wear out your agent. Chose a location and go for it!
  3. Be prepared to compromise. This may come as a shock to some but NO HOME IS PERFECT. There are many beautiful homes but not one has everything. I have not yet met a buyer who said this home was absolutely perfect. Most buyers end up with homes that are close to perfect and most importantly, make them happy. That is true perfection.
  4. Buy something you can afford. You don’t have to spend a fortune and you don’t have to spend up to your maximum loan limit. Buy what you will find is reasonable and enjoy life a lot. It is better to buy something you feel fits your budget than to buy a home that leaves you cash poor.
  5. Be satisfied. As my Dad always says…there is always someone with more than you and someone who has less than you. Be grateful for what you have and enjoy living. To borrow Martha’s phrase…It’s a good thing!

Cheers, Linda

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Buyer’s Market?

March 17, 2008

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ARE THESE THE DOGS DAYS OF REAL ESTATE? On the contrary, it’s A GREAT TIME to buy a home. Why…because buyers hold a lot of power right now and if used properly today’s buyer can become very successful at buying a home at the most opportune time in over a decade. Like it or not, buyers have a big advantage in this market because sellers are now more willing to negotiate. There are also more homes for sale on the market and the lenders are begging for qualified buyers. Buyers rule the world. However, buyers need to be careful. Why? Because things are getting a little ugly in the real estate industry and EVERY BUYER seems to think that all Sellers are DESPERATE for an offer, any offer. I have lost track of how many transactions have not only come in $5,000 under listing price but sometimes almost $500,000 under list price. Buyers need to understand that not EVERY SALE IS A SHORT SALE and not every SELLER is in panic mode. But what you do have…Sellers willing to make some good “deals” out there and you are missing the action. Why are buyers hesitant? I have no idea. I do know this…if buyers wait around for the PERFECT time to buy a home they will miss their chance. He who hesitates… So think about it, go out and look. Find a good REALTOR and get an offer in on the home of your dreams. It’s still a good buy, but even better, it’s good to come home each and every night to your “OWN” place and have a little slice of heaven here on earth.

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WEEKEND home projects

January 28, 2008

 

I find that most buyers today are looking for a home that they can move in without having to lift a finger to make any improvements. TV has brought us the designer dream homes, designing on a dime and trading houses. It’s a whole new world full of ideas for today’s homeowner. For the luxury buyer…there is always the hired help. For those of you who can’t afford hired help, here are some great suggestions for the weekend home repair warrior.

According to Cecilia Sherrard with RISMEDIA, the following are the top things you can finish over a weekend.

1. Replace Old Knobs and Door Handles. This is an easy, inexpensive way to dress up or change the look of doors, cabinets, and more. Many homes in the Cleveland Ohio area are older and have outdated hardware. These small changes can actually transform the look and style of your home. Whether you choose vintage glass, shiny metal or even rustic wood, installing these new knobs and handles can add to the value of your home, as well. Don’t overlook the hinges! If you can’t quite get to those now, but have a squeaky door, try spraying the hinges with a cooking spray like Pam. It works!

2. Install a Greenhouse Window. A beautiful addition to any room in the home, a greenhouse window will allow you to grow flowers, herbs and other plants even during the winter! Replacing a regular window with a greenhouse window adds dimension, light and display space while eliminating clutter. Available at home supply stores, they come with many options including granite finishes and glass shelves.

3. Paint, Paint, Paint! Painting can instantly change your home’s look and feel. Don’t limit your color change to just your walls – an updated color on furniture or cabinetry can really spice things up, as well. Play with new colors, patterns and techniques. Don’t be afraid of going bold; remember, if you don’t like the way the color looks, you can always paint over it! There’s a wall, trim or doorway in everyone’s home that could use some paint or freshening. Cheap and easy, get to work!

4. Replace Builder Lighting or Outdated Fixtures with remote ceiling fans. Not only will it save energy and keep your air circulating, it will add appeal, value and enhance the beauty of a room and pull your entire decor together from the floor up. Ceiling fans today are modern, fun, classy and relatively easy to install. They come with directions and there’s help online. If you purchase one in a home improvement store the sales people will help you as well! Make sure you call on their advice and expertise, that’s what they’re there for!

5. Work on your closets and cabinets. Most homeowners have secrets hiding in their closets and cabinetry. The closet is the least looked at part of the home and there we tend to find cracking or peeling paint, old contact paper and clutter! How about taking a few hours and organize, adding new shelves, hooks or hardware and giving yourself more room by throwing out or donating some of the items you think one day you’ll use but haven’t in a decade!

6. Don’t forget your home’s air quality. Change your furnace filter! You can add a couple of dryer sheets to the new one to add a cheap and whole-house air freshener. Remove your vents and soak them in a hot bleach bath while you vacuum inside to remove dust and build up. Clean the hard to reach spots in your home that you don’t get to often. Behind entertainment centers, baseboards, behind heavy furniture and under beds. Removing dust in the home can make it smell better and create a healthier environment!

These fun projects are a great way to pass the time this winter, not to mention the way they’ll quickly improve the look and value of your home!

For more information, tips, and ideas, see: YouShouldOwn.com.