4 Great Reasons to Buy This Spring!

4 Great Reasons to Buy This Spring!

Here are four great reasons to consider buying a home today instead of waiting.

1. Prices Will Continue to Rise

CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index reports that home prices have appreciated by 6.9% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts that prices will continue to increase at a rate of 4.8% over the next year.

The bottom in home prices has come and gone. Home values will continue to appreciate for years. Waiting no longer makes sense.

2. Mortgage Interest Rates Are Projected to Increase

Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey shows that interest rates for a 30-year mortgage have remained around 4% over the last couple months. The Mortgage Bankers Association, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac & the National Association of Realtors are in unison, projecting that rates will increase by at least a half a percentage point this time next year.

An increase in rates will impact YOUR monthly mortgage payment. A year from now, your housing expense will increase if a mortgage is necessary to buy your next home.

3. Either Way, You are Paying a Mortgage 

There are some renters who have not yet purchased a home because they are uncomfortable taking on the obligation of a mortgage. Everyone should realize that, unless you are living with your parents rent-free, you are paying a mortgage – either yours or your landlord’s.

As an owner, your mortgage payment is a form of ‘forced savings’ that allows you to build equity in your home that you can tap into later in life. As a renter, you guarantee your landlord is the person with that equity.

Are you ready to put your housing cost to work for you?

4. It’s Time to Move on with Your Life

The ‘cost’ of a home is determined by two major components: the price of the home and the current mortgage rate. It appears that both are on the rise.

But what if they weren’t? Would you wait?

Look at the actual reason you are buying and decide if it is worth waiting. Whether you want to have a great place for your children to grow up, you want your family to be safer or you just want to have control over renovations, maybe now is the time to buy.

If the right thing for you and your family is to purchase a home this year, buying sooner rather than later could lead to substantial savings.

Housing Market Expected to “Spring Forward”

Housing Market Expected to “Spring Forward”

Just like our clocks this weekend in the majority of the country, the housing market will soon “spring forward!” Similar to tension in a spring, the lack of inventory available for sale in the market right now is what is holding back the market.

Many potential sellers believe that waiting until Spring is in their best interest, and traditionally they would have been right.

Buyer demand has seasonality to it, which usually falls off in the winter months, especially in areas of the country impacted by arctic temperatures and conditions.

That hasn’t happened this year.

Demand for housing has remained strong as mortgage rates have remained near historic lows.

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently reported that the top 10 dates sellers listed their homes in 2016 all fell in April, May or June.

Those who act quickly and list now could benefit greatly from additional exposure to buyers prior to a flood of more competition coming to market in the next few months.

Bottom Line

If you are planning on selling your home in 2017, let’s get together to evaluate the opportunities in our market.

Where Did Americans Move in 2016?

Where Did Americans Move in 2016?

Where Did Americans Move in 2016? | MyKCM

Some Highlights:

  • For the 5th year in a row, the Northeast saw a concentration of “High Outbound” activity.
  • For the first time ever, South Dakota held the top spot for “High Inbound” states.
  • Much of America’s outbound activity can be attributed to Boomers relocating to warmer climates after retiring.
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Top 5 Reasons You Should Not For Sale By Owner

Top 5 Reasons You Should Not 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 Buyers

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?

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.

The 8% share represents the lowest recorded figure since NAR began collecting data in 1981.

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.

Studies have shown that the typical house sold by the homeowner sells for $185,000, while the typical house sold by an agent sells for $245,000. This doesn’t mean that an agent can get $60,000 more for your home, as studies have shown that people are more likely to FSBO in markets with lower price points. However, it does show that selling on your own might not make sense.

Bottom Line

Before you decide to take on the challenges of selling your house on your own, let’s get together and discuss the options available in your market today.

Listing in the Winter Attracts More Serious Buyers

Listing in the Winter Attracts More Serious Buyers

A recent study of more than 7 million home sales over the past four years revealed that the season in which a home is listed may be able to shed some light on the likelihood that the home will sell for more than asking price, as well as how quickly the sale will close.

It’s no surprise that listing a home for sale during the spring saw the largest return, as the spring is traditionally the busiest season for real estate. What is surprising, though, is that listing during the winter came in second!

“Among spring listings, 18.7 percent of homes fetched above asking, with winter listings not far behind at 17.5 percent. While 48.0 percent of homes listed in spring sold within 30 days, 46.2 percent of homes in winter did the same.”

The study goes on to say that:

“Buyers [in the winter] often need to move, so they’re much less likely to make a lowball offer and they’ll often want to close quickly — two things that can make the sale much smoother.” 

Bottom Line

If you are debating listing your home for sale in 2017, keep in mind that the spring is when most other homeowners will decide to list their homes as well. Listing your home this winter will ensure that you have the best exposure to the serious buyers who are out looking now!

The study used the astronomical seasons to determine which season the listing date fell into (Winter: Dec. 21 – Mar. 20; Spring: Mar. 21 – June 20; Summer: June 21 – Sept 21; Autumn: Sept 21 – Dec. 20).

Homeownership Offers Stability & Wealth Creation

Homeownership Offers Stability & Wealth Creation

The most recent Housing Pulse Survey released by the National Association of Realtors revealed that the two major reasons Americans prefer owning their own home instead of renting are:

  1. They want the opportunity to build equity.
  2. They want a stable and safe environment.

Building Equity

In a recent article by The Mortgage Reports, they report that “buying and owning a home is the essence of ‘The American Dream.’ Each month, your housing payments go toward owning your home instead of renting it; building your personal wealth and assets instead of someone else’s.

History has shown that homeownership is a clear path to wealth-building, with homeowners boasting a net worth [that is] multiples higher than the net worth of renters.”  

Family Stability 

Does owning your home really create a more stable environment for your family?

survey of property managers conducted by rent.com disclosed two reasons tenants should feel less stable with their housing situation:

  • 68% of property managers predict that rental rates will continue to rise in the next year by an average of 8%.
  • 53% of property managers said that they were more likely to bring in a new tenant at a higher rate than to negotiate and renew a lease with a current tenant they already know.

We can see from these survey results that renting will provide anything but a stable environment in the near future.

Bottom Line

Homeowners enjoy a more stable environment, and at the same time are given the opportunity to build their family’s net worth.

Buyer Demand Is Outpacing the Supply of Homes for Sale

Buyer Demand Is Outpacing the Supply 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 monthly 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: “How would you rate buyer traffic in your area?”

Buyer Demand Is Outpacing the Supply of Homes for Sale | MyKCM

The darker the blue, the stronger the demand for homes in that area. Only six states had 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, the majority 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.

Buyer Demand Is Outpacing the Supply of Homes for Sale | MyKCM

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. If you are debating listing your home for sale, let’s get together to help you capitalize on the demand in the market now!


Love it or List it

Love It or List it is a home design TV show currently on HGTV. If you have ever watched it you would know the show is designed to help homeowners choose between keeping their newly renovated home or to buy a different home. Have you ever considered such a challenge?

Reconsider your home and what you love and what you wish you could change. You can draw a simple two column chart labeled, “Love it” or “List it”. First of all, do you love your location? Do you wish you could live in a different area of town, nearer to your child’s school, or your work? Obviously changing the location of your current home is very impractical. If living in a different neighborhood is important to you, make a check in the “List it” Column. Otherwise, if you love your location, check in the “Love it” Column.

Is your home big enough? Or too big? Adding an addition to a home is often a good way to improve your home for your needs. But practicality is depending on lot size, floor plan, budget, and vision. If you need more room for a growing family you can reinvent spaces too. For example, finishing the basement with egress windows for an extra bedroom. If there is no room to reinvent or you simply have too big of a house, consider checking in the “List it” column.

What current need isn’t being met in your house? Do you need main floor laundry? Or a place for coats and boots so they don’t litter the living room, possibly a garage? Explore ideas for how this could be added. Sometimes closets you have in your home already could be set up for laundry for a couple hundred dollars. But what about a mud room? Depending on your home and the space you have, this might mean an addition, or not possible at all. Reconsider how valuable it would be, whatever your need, and the difficulty/expense of implementing it in your own home. If you feel it isn’t a possibly to add to your home, put a check in the “List it” Column.

What about that layout? Do you dream of a open concept floor plan? Or a master bath? Sometimes a wall knock out can open up an entire home. Figure out what can be done to accomplish your dreams. And decide whether you feel it is feasible or not. Don’t forget to check the column that applies to your decision.

How do you like the style of your home? Floors, cabinets, doors? If you love your home but just wish it was more modern, go for the upgrades! If cabinets scream 90’s with golden blonde wood, you can ditch them all together, paint or stain them. Sometimes just new counter top, cabinet hardware and new flooring can modernize your kitchen while keeping your blonde cabinets. Install new paneled doors and replace your golden door knobs with oil rubbed bronze. These upgrades don’t have to break the bank and can be done over time as your budget allows. If these type of upgrades are all you need to Love It, then put a check in the “Love it” column.

Continue to do this for all of your needs/wants. You might find that your home just needs a few upgrades or that your home doesn’t work for you anymore and it is time to List It.

If you think it is time to List your home and find one that better fits your needs, Give me a call! Angie Uttecht 605-350-2553





Maybe Someday….

Image result for someday quotes

Remember the first time you lived away from your parents? You likely lived in a small apartment or in a dorm room. It usually doesn’t take very long of writing rent checks to realize that you would like to own a home, someday.

Years go by and you still don’t have a down payment. Your credit still isn’t high enough.

But when the time is right, when the stars align, someday, you will buy a house.

You find a house that seems just right, in a great neighborhood, great price, it is perfect, but…  You still don’t have a down payment? 

That’s okay. The time just isn’t right for you. You just got to wait until the time is right.

Here is the problem. Time alone doesn’t make you more eligible for home ownership.

It does, however, take time to accomplish down payment and credit score goals. Don’t waist the following years waiting for it to happen on its own. Be proactive in your goals.

  1. Find out what you can afford. You can always buy cheaper but you must always stay in a comfortable range. Use this tool to help. http://acerealty.net/buying/affordability-calculator/
  2. Calculate 10% of your price point. For an example, if you figure you can afford a $100,000 house you should be making at least $2600/month. You should start to save $10,000 for a down payment.
  3. Make a Savings Plan. Set aside 10% of your paycheck a week before you pay your bills. You more than likely will find that you can live on 90% of your income just fine. Do you know how long it will take to save $10,000 at that rate of $260/month? 3 Years and 2 Months. If you can save more than that, great! The sooner you will be ready. Can’t save 10% a month? Then you need to be looking into cheaper priced houses.
    Your numbers will actually look very similar no matter what price range you are in. If you are buying a house that is within the affordability calculator suggestion, and save 10% of your monthly income, you should have enough in 3 years and 2 months for the down payment.
  4. Get your credit score up! Here are some suggestions right from FICO.

What is easy to do is also easy not to do — Jim Rohn

When you are ready for the next step of shopping for a house, contact me! I would love to help.

Angie Uttecht 605-350-2553