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Fall 2017 Seller’s Guide

5 Reasons To Sell This Fall 

Seller's Guide

 Before you sell your La Mesa Home==>   See how you can make up to $30,000 more

Here are five reasons listing your home for sale this fall makes sense.

1. Demand Is Strong

The latest Buyer Traffic Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains very strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing and able to purchase… and are in the market right now! More often than not, multiple buyers are competing with each other to buy a home.

Take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market.

2. There Is Less Competition Now

Housing inventory is still under the 6-month supply that is needed for a normal housing market. This means that, in the majority of the country, there are not enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers in the market. This is good news for homeowners who have gained equity as their home values have increased. However, additional inventory could be coming to the market soon.

Historically, the average number of years a homeowner stayed in their home was six, but has jumped to an average of almost nine years since 2008. There is a pent-up desire for many homeowners to move, as they were unable to sell over the last few years because of a negative equity situation. As home values continue to appreciate, more and more homeowners will be given the freedom to move.

The choices buyers have will continue to increase. Don’t wait until this other inventory comes to market before you decide to sell.

3. The Process Will Be Quicker

Today’s competitive environment has forced buyers to do all they can to stand out from the crowd, including getting pre-approved for their mortgage financing. This makes the entire selling process much faster and much simpler as buyers know exactly what they can afford before home shopping. According to Ellie Mae’s latest Origination Insights Report, the time to close a loan has dropped to 43 days, after seeing a 12-month high of 48 days in January.

4. There Will Never Be a Better Time to Move Up

If your next move will be into a premium or luxury home, now is the time to move up! The inventory of homes for sale at these higher price ranges has forced these markets into a buyer’s market. This means that if you are planning on selling a starter or trade-up home, your home will sell quickly AND you’ll be able to find a premium home to call your own!

Prices are projected to appreciate by 5.2% over the next year according to CoreLogic. If you are moving to a higher-priced home, it will wind up costing you more in raw dollars (both in down payment and mortgage payment) if you wait.

5. It’s Time to Move on With Your Life

Look at the reason you decided to sell in the first place and determine whether it is worth waiting. Is money more important than being with family? Is money more important than your health? Is money more important than having the freedom to go on with your life the way you think you should?

Only you know the answers to the questions above. You have the power to take control of the situation by putting your home on the market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire.

That is what is truly important.

Seller's Guide

Buyer Demand Continues to Outpace Inventory of Homes for Sale

The price of any item is determined by the supply of that item, as well as the market demand. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) surveys “over 50,000 real estate practitioners about their expectations for home sales, prices and market conditions” for their Realtors Confidence Index.

Their latest edition sheds some light on the relationship between Seller Traffic (supply) and Buyer Traffic (demand).

Buyer Demand

The map below was created after asking the question:

Seller's Guide

“How would you rate buyer traffic in your area?”

The darker the blue, the more buyers are looking for homes in that area. Only one state came in with a weak demand level.

Seller Supply

The Index also asked:

“How would you rate seller traffic in your area?”

As you can see from the map below, much of the country has weak seller traffic, meaning there are far fewer homes on the market than what is needed to satisfy the buyers who are out looking for their dream homes.Seller's Guide

Bottom Line:

Looking at the maps above, it is not hard to see why prices are appreciating in many areas of the country. Until the supply of homes for sale starts to meet the buyer demand, prices will continue to increase.

Lack Of Listings Slowing Down The Market 

Seller's Guide

The Joint Center of Housing Studies (JCHS) at Harvard University recently released their 2017 State of the Nation’s Housing Study, and a recent blog from JCHS revealed some of the more surprising aspects of the study.

The first two revelations centered around the shortage of housing inventory currently available in both existing homes and new construction.

Regarding Existing Home Inventory:

“For the fourth year in a row, the inventory of homes for sale across the US not only failed to recover, but dropped yet again. At the end of 2016 there were historically low 1.65 million homes for sale nationwide, which at the current sales rate was just 3.6 months of supply – almost half of the 6.0 months level that is considered a balanced market.”

Regarding New Home Inventory:

“Markets nationwide are still feeling the effects of the deep and extended decline in housing construction. Over the past 10 years, just 9 million new housing units were completed and added to the housing stock. This was the lowest 10-year period on records dating back to the 1970s, and far below the 14 and 15 million units averaged over the 1980s and 1990s.”

Bottom Line:

The biggest challenge in today’s market is getting current homeowners and builders to realize the opportunity they have to maximize profit by selling and/or building NOW!!

Home Prices Over The Last Year 

Every quarter, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) reports on the year-over-year changes in home prices. Below, you will see that prices are up year-over-year in every region.

Year-over-Year Prices Regionally

Seller's Guide

Looking at the breakdown by state, you can see that each state is appreciating at a different rate. This is important to know if you are planning on relocating to a different area of the country. Waiting to move may end up costing you more!

Year-over-Year Prices By State

Seller's Guide

Do You Know How Much Equity You Have In Your Home? 

CoreLogic’s latest Equity Report revealed that 91,000 properties regained equity in the first quarter of 2017. This is great news for the country, as 48.2 million of all mortgaged properties are now in a positive equity situation.

Price Appreciation = Good News for Homeowners

Frank Nothaft, CoreLogic’s Chief Economist, explains:

“One million borrowers achieved positive equity over the last year, which means risk continues to steadily decline as a result of increasing home prices.”

Frank Martell, President, and CEO of CoreLogic believes this is a great sign for the market in 2017 as well, as he had this to say:

“Homeowner equity increased by $766 billion over the last year, the largest increase since Q2 2014. The rising cushion of home equity is one of the main drivers of improved mortgage performance. Since home equity is the largest source of homeowner wealth, the increase in home equity also supports consumer balance sheets, spending, and the broader economy.”

This is great news for homeowners! But, do they realize that their equity position has changed?

According to Fannie Mae’s Home Purchase Sentiment Index (HPSI), more homeowners are beginning to realize that they may have more equity than they first thought.

“This is only the second time in the survey’s history that the net share of those saying it’s a good time to sell surpassed the net share of those saying it’s a good time to buy.”

78.8% of homeowners have significant equity (more than 20%) in their homes today!

This means that many Americans with a mortgage have an opportunity to take advantage of today’s seller’s market. With a sizeable equity position, many homeowners could easily move into a housing situation that better meets their current needs (moving to a larger home or downsizing).

Doug Duncan, Senior Vice President and Chief Economist at Fannie Mae spoke out on this issue:

“High home prices have led many consumers to give us the first clear indication we’ve seen in the National Housing Survey’s seven-year history that they think it’s now a seller’s market. However, we continue to see a lack of housing supply as many potential sellers are unwilling or unable to put their homes on the market…”

Bottom Line:

If you are one of the many Americans who are unsure of how much equity they have built in their homes, don’t let that be the reason you fail to move on to your dream home in 2017! Let’s get together to evaluate your situation!

Looking For A Luxury Home? Now’s The Time To Act! 

Seller's Guide

If your house no longer fits your needs and you are planning on buying a luxury home, now is a great time to do so! According to Trulia’s Market Mismatch Study, buyers are in control in today’s premium home market.

The inventory of homes for sale in the luxury market far exceeds those searching to purchase these properties in many areas of the country. This means that homes are often staying on the market longer, or can be found at a discount.

Those who have a starter or trade-up home to sell will find buyers competing, and often entering bidding wars, to be able to call your house their new home.

The sale of your starter or trade-up house will aid in coming up with a larger down payment for your new luxury home. Even a 5% down payment on a million-dollar home is $50,000.

But not all who are buying luxury properties have a home to sell first.

A Washington Post article gave some insight into what many millennials are choosing to do:

“Some high-earning millennials save money until they are in their early 30s to buy a place and just skip over that starter-home phase. They’ll stay in an apartment until they can afford to pay for the place they want.”

Bottom Line:

The best time to sell anything is when demand is high and supply is low. If you are currently in a starter or trade-up house that no longer fits your needs and are looking to step into a luxury home, now’s the time to list your house for sale and make your dreams come true.

The ‘Great News’ About Rising Prices 

Recently there has been a lot of talk about home prices and if they are accelerating too quickly. In some areas of the country, seller supply (homes for sale) cannot keep up with the number of buyers out looking for a home, which has caused prices to rise.

The great news about rising prices, however, is that according to CoreLogic’s latest US Economic Outlook, the average American household gained over $14,000 in equity over the course of the last year, largely due to home value increases.

The map below was created from CoreLogic’s report and shows the average equity gain per mortgaged home over the past year.

Seller's Guide

For those who are worried that we are doomed to repeat 2006 all over again, it is important to note that homeowners are investing their new found equity in their homes and themselves, not in depreciating assets. Seller’s Guide 2017 

The added equity is helping families put their children through college, and even invest in starting small businesses, allowing them to pay off their mortgage sooner or move up to the home that will better suit their needs now.Seller’s Guide 2017 

Bottom Line:

CoreLogic predicts that home prices will appreciate by another 5.2% by this time next year. If you are a homeowner looking to take advantage of your home equity by moving up to your dream home, let’s discuss your options!

Where Are Home Prices Heading In The Next 5 Years? 

Seller's GuideToday, many real estate conversations center on home prices and where they may be headed. That is why there is tremendous value in the Home Price Expectation Survey. Every quarter, Pulsenomics surveys a nationwide panel of over 100 economists, real estate experts and investment & market strategists about where prices are headed over the next five years. They then average the projections of all 100+ experts into a single number.Seller’s Guide 2017 

The results of their latest survey:

  • Values will appreciate by 5.0% in 2017
  • Cumulative appreciation will be 18.4% by 2021
  • That means that the average annual appreciation will be 3.6% over the next 5 years
  • Even the experts making up the most bearish quartile of the survey are still projecting a cumulative appreciation of 6.7% by 2021

Individual opinions make headlines. This survey is a fair depiction of future values.

 

Don’t Wait! Move Up To The Home You’ve Always Wanted

Seller's GuideAccording to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage have hovered around 4% all year and are still near record lows.Seller’s Guide 2017 

The interest rate you secure when buying a home not only greatly impacts your monthly housing costs, but also impacts your purchasing power.

Purchasing power, simply put, is the amount of home you can afford to buy for the budget you have available to spend. As rates increase, the price of the house you can afford will decrease if you plan to stay within a certain monthly housing budget.

Seller's GuideThe chart to the right shows the impact rising interest rates would have if you planned to purchase a home within the national median price range, and planned to keep your principal and interest payments between $1,850-$1,900 a month.

With each quarter of a percent increase in interest rate, the value of the home you can afford decreases by 2.5% (in this example, $10,000). Experts predict that mortgage rates will be closer to 5% by this time next year.Seller’s Guide 2017 

 

Where Are Interest Rates Headed? 

Seller's GuideIf you are considering moving up to your dream home, it may be better to do it sooner rather than later. The two components of your monthly mortgage payment (home prices and interest rates) are both projected to increase as the year moves forward, and interest rates may increase rather dramatically. Here are some predictions as to where rates will be by the end of the year. Seller’s Guide 2017 

Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist Sean Becketti predicts that despite the fact that 30-year fixed rate mortgages are still near a seven-month low, they will “start rising slowly as the year progresses…” The good news, however, is that he predicts they will remain “right around 4%.”

Another prediction from CoreLogic’s Chief Economist Frank Nothaft says that “fixed-rate mortgage rates are likely to gradually edge higher over the next six to 12 months,” and that “rates are likely to rise to 4.25% to 4.50% by the end of 2017.”

Mike Fratantoni, Chief Economist for the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) anticipates similar rises in interest rates and says that the MBA thinks “[the Fed will] hike once more in September and then probably three or four times in each of the next couple of years.” He also expects that 30-year mortgage rates will “be near 4.5% by the end of the year – and above 5% by the end of 2018.”

Bottom Line:

If you are feeling good about your family’s economic future and are considering making a move to your dream home, doing it sooner rather than later makes the most sense. Seller’s Guide 2017 

How To Get The Most Money From The Sale Of Your Home 

Seller's GuideEvery homeowner wants to make sure they maximize their financial reward when selling their home. But how do you guarantee that you receive maximum value for your house? Here are two keys to ensure that you get the highest price possible.

  1. Price it a LITTLE LOW

This may seem counterintuitive. However, let’s look at this concept for a moment. Many homeowners think that pricing their home a little OVER market value will leave them room for negotiation. In actuality, this just dramatically lessens the demand for your house (see chart below).

Seller's Guide

Instead of the seller trying to ‘win’ the negotiation with one buyer, they should price it so that demand for the home is maximized. In doing this, the seller will not be fighting with a buyer over the price but instead will have multiple buyers fighting with each other over the house.

Realtor.com recently gave this advice:

“Aim to price your property at or just slightly below the going rate. Today’s buyers are highly informed, so if they sense they’re getting a deal, they’re likely to bid up a property that’s slightly underpriced, especially in areas with low inventory.” 

  1. Use a Real Estate Professional

This, too, may seem counterintuitive. The seller may think they would make more money if they didn’t have to pay a real estate commission. With this being said, studies have shown that homes typically sell for more money when handled by a real estate professional. Seller’s Guide 2017 

A new study by Collateral Analytics, reveals that FSBOs don’t actually save any money, and in some cases may be costing themselves more, by not listing with an agent.

In the study, they analyzed home sales in a variety of markets in 2016 and the first half of 2017. The data showed that:

“FSBOs tend to sell for lower prices than comparable home sales, and in many cases below the average differential represented by the prevailing commission rate.”

The results of the study showed that the differential in selling prices for FSBOs when compared to MLS sales of similar properties is about 5.5%. Sales in 2017 suggest the average price was near 6% lower for FSBO sales of similar properties. Seller’s Guide 2017 

Bottom Line:

Price your house at or slightly below the current market value and hire a professional. That will guarantee you maximize the price you get for your house.

Seller's Guide

The Role Access Plays In Getting Your House Sold! 

Seller's GuideSo you’ve decided to sell your house. You’ve hired a real estate professional to help you with the entire process and they have asked you what level of access you want to provide to potential buyers.

There are four elements to a quality listing. At the top of the list is Access, followed by Condition, Financing, and Price. There are many levels of access that you could provide to your agent to be able to show your home.

Here are five levels of access that you could provide to a buyer with a brief description:

  • Lockbox on the Door – This allows buyers the ability to see the home as soon as they are aware of the listing, or at their convenience.
  • Providing a Key to the Home – Although the buyer’s agent may need to stop by an office to pick up the key, there is little delay in being able to show the home.
  • Open Access with a Phone Call – The seller allows showing with just a phone call’s notice.
  • By Appointment Only (example: 48 Hour Notice) – Many out-of-town/state buyers and relocation buyers visit an area they would like to move to and only have the weekend to view homes. They may not be able to plan that far in advance or may be unable to wait the 48 hours to be shown the house.
  • Limited Access (example: the home is only available on Mondays or Tuesdays at
    2 pm or for only a couple of hours a day) – This is the most difficult way to be able to show your house to potential buyers.

In a competitive marketplace, access can make or break your ability to get the price you are looking for, or even sell your house at all. Seller’s Guide 2017 

The Importance Of Using An Agent When Selling Your Home 

Seller's GuideWhen a homeowner decides to sell their house, they obviously want the best possible price with the least amount of hassles. However, for the vast majority of sellers, the most important result is to actually get the home sold. Seller’s Guide 2017 

In order to accomplish all three goals, a seller should realize the importance of using a real estate professional. We realize that technology has changed the purchaser’s behavior during the home buying process. According to the National Association of Realtors’ latest Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, the percentage of buyers who used the internet in their home search increased to 94%.

However, the report also revealed that 96% of buyers that used the internet when searching for a home purchased their home through either a real estate agent/broker or from a builder or builder’s agent. Only 2% purchased their home directly from a seller whom the buyer didn’t know.

Buyers search for a home online, but then depend on an agent to find the home they will buy (50%), to negotiate the terms of the sale (47%) & price (36%), or to help understand the process (61%). Seller’s Guide 2017 

The plethora of information now available has resulted in an increase in the percentage of buyers that reach out to real estate professionals to “connect the dots.” This is obvious as the percentage of overall buyers who used an agent to buy their home has steadily increased from 69% in 2001.

Bottom Line:

If you are thinking of selling your home, don’t underestimate the role that a real estate professional can play in the process. Seller’s Guide 2017 

Two Things You Don’t Need To Hear From Your Listing Agent 

Seller's GuideYou’ve decided to sell your house. You begin to interview potential real estate agents to help you through the process. You need someone you trust enough to:

  • Set the market value on possibly the largest asset your family owns (your home)
  • Set the time schedule for the successful liquidation of that asset
  • Set the fee for the services required to liquidate that asset

An agent must be concerned first and foremost with you and your family in order to garner that degree of trust. Make sure this is the case.

Be careful if the agent you are interviewing begins the interview by:

  • Bragging about their success
  • Bragging about their company’s success

An agent’s success and the success of their company can be important considerations when deciding on the right real estate professional to represent you in the sale of your house. However, you first need to know that they care about what you need and what you expect from the sale. If the agent is not interested in first establishing your needs, how successful they may seem is much less important. Seller’s Guide 2017 

Look for someone with the ‘heart of a teacher’ who comes in prepared to explain the current real estate market to you, and is patient enough to take the time to show you how it may impact the sale of your home; not someone only interested in trying to sell you on how great they are.

You have many agents from which to choose. Pick someone who truly cares. Seller’s Guide 2017 

Homeowners: Your Home Must Be Sold Twice 

In today’s housing market, where supply is very low and demand is very high, home values are increasing rapidly. Many experts are projecting that home values could appreciate by another 5%+ over the next twelve months. One major challenge in such a market is the bank appraisal.

If prices are surging, it is difficult for appraisers to find adequate, comparable sales (similar houses in the neighborhood that recently closed) to defend the selling price when performing the appraisal for the bank. Seller’s Guide 2017 

Every month in their Home Price Perception Index (HPPI), Quicken Loans measures the disparity between what a homeowner who is seeking to refinance their home believes their house is worth, as compared to an appraiser’s evaluation of that same home.

Bill Banfield, VP of Capital Markets at Quicken Loans urges anyone looking to buy or sell in today’s market to remember the impact of this challenge:

“While a 1 or 2 percent difference in home value opinions may not seem like a lot, it could be enough to derail a mortgage.

A homeowner [or a buyer] could be forced to bring more cash to closing in order to make a mortgage work if the appraisal is lower than expected. On the other hand, if an appraisal comes in higher, they could be surprised with more equity than they had planned. Either way, if owners are aware of their local markets it will lead to smoother mortgage transactions.”

The chart below illustrates the changes in home price estimates over the last 12 months. Seller’s Guide 2017 

Appraiser Home Value Opinions Compared to Homeowner Estimates

Seller's Guide

Bottom Line:

Every house on the market has to be sold twice; once to a prospective buyer and then to the bank (through the bank’s appraisal). With escalating prices, the second sale might be even more difficult than the first. If you are planning on entering the housing market this year, let’s get together to discuss this and any other obstacle that may arise. Seller’s Guide 2017 

5 Reasons You Shouldn’t For Sale By Owner 

In today’s market, with home prices rising and a lack of inventory, some homeowners may consider trying to sell their home on their own, known in the industry as a For Sale By Owner (FSBO). There are several reasons why this might not be a good idea for the vast majority of sellers.

Here are the top five reasons:

1. Exposure to Prospective Purchasers

Recent studies have shown that 94% of buyers search online for a home. That is in comparison to only 17% looking at print newspaper ads. Most real estate agents have an internet strategy to promote the sale of your home. Do you? Seller’s Guide 2017 

2. Results Come from The Internet

Where did buyers find the home they actually purchased?

  • 51% on the internet
  • 34% from a Real Estate Agent
  • 9% from a yard sign
  • 1% from newspapers

The days of selling your house by just putting up a sign and putting it in the paper are long gone. Having a strong internet strategy is crucial.

3. There Are Too Many People to Negotiate With

Here is a list of some of the people with whom you must be prepared to negotiate if you decide to For Sale By Owner:

  • The buyer who wants the best deal possible
  • The buyer’s agent who solely represents the best interest of the buyer
  • The buyer’s attorney (in some parts of the country)
  • The home inspection companies, which work for the buyer and will almost always find some problems with the house
  • The appraiser if there is a question of value

4. FSBOing Has Become More And More Difficult

The paperwork involved in selling and buying a home has increased dramatically as industry disclosures and regulations have become mandatory. This is one of the reasons that the percentage of people FSBOing has dropped from 19% to 8% over the last 20+ years. Seller’s Guide 2017 

5. You Net More Money When Using an Agent

Many homeowners believe that they will save the real estate commission by selling on their own. Realize that the main reason buyers look at FSBOs is because they also believe they can save the real estate agent’s commission. The seller and buyer can’t both save the commission.

A new study by Collateral Analytics revealed that FSBOs don’t actually save anything, and in some cases, may be costing themselves more, by not listing with an agent. One of the main reasons for the price difference at the time of sale is:

“Properties listed with a broker that is a member of the local MLS will be listed online with all other participating broker websites, marketing the home to a much larger buyer population. And those MLS properties generally offer compensation to agents who represent buyers, incentivizing them to show and sell the property and again potentially enlarging the buyer pool.”

If more buyers see a home, the greater the chances are that there could be a bidding war for the property. The study showed that the difference in price between comparable homes of size and location is currently at an average of 6% this year. Seller’s Guide 2017 

Why would you choose to list on your own and manage the entire transaction when you can hire an agent and not have to pay anything more?

Bottom Line:

Before you decide to take on the challenges of selling your house on your own, let’s get together and discuss your needs.

Seller's Guide

CONTACT ME TO TALK MORE

I’m sure you have questions and concerns…

I would love to talk with you more about what you read here, and help you on the path to selling your house. My contact information is below. I look forward to hearing from you…


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Seller’s Guide 2017

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