Treasure Coast Real Estate News

Articles on Our Housing and Real Estate Markets

March 9, 2021

10 Signs You Are Ready to Invest in Real Estate

When it comes to property investment, timing is everything. Ultimately, choosing the right time to enter the market will significantly impact your investment's long-term success.

Investment Properties

But how can you as an investor know whether the timing is right? Global property portal Lamudi has compiled a list of 10 tell-tale signs that now is the time to start building your investment portfolio.

1. You are financially ready. You have saved enough for the down payment, and you have also established your emergency fund. You have taken into account home maintenance expenses. Your credit history is good, and you can meet all the financial obligations.

2. You have set your long-term goals. You have a clear picture in your mind of your investment's purpose, and you are flexible enough to adjust to changing circumstances. You are not hesitant, and when the timing is right, you can adapt to the market needs and the development of technologies.

3. You have done your research. You know your future property's neighborhood well enough to foresee the coming trends and possible community changes. You have researched all the schools in the area and the best commuting means, and you can predict the next homebuyers needs.

4. You have chosen a stable economy. The area is financially stable, economic trends are promising, and equities are surging. No demographic fluctuation or irregular variation of the population has been recorded in the area.

5. You understand the country’s policies regarding real estate. The region's policies promote and encourage a positive, innovative environment and drive further economic growth. The tax policy in the country is positive for homeowners. The global innovation index is rising in the area.

6. Infrastructure projects are underway and likely to lead to an increase in property values. The area's infrastructure is being developed to focus on transport, energy, solid waste, and water management developments.

7. The region is moving toward sustainable development. The region’s awareness of global and local environmental issues increases and the demand for eco-friendly homes and sustainable rural and urban development is rising. As more and more people head toward sustainable living, investing in sustainable property will increase its value in the future.

8. The location draws a lot of interest. Whether it is the best travel destination or the hot jobs spot, the location is always on the top of the search engine. It has become a successful startup hub already or is planning to do so in the coming years, driving many job seekers into the area. The number of enrolled students is increasing every year; the area draws interest in international students.

9. You have found a reliable real estate agent. If you are an overseas buyer, it is particularly crucial to make sure you have a good representative on the ground. Your real estate agent is trustworthy and knows the local market well enough to help you make a choice.

10. You have researched local differences in the property market. Whether you plan to invest in residential property and turn it into a rental or office space, you are fully aware of all cultural differences that might occur when dealing with a property seller.

Source: Lamudi

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2015. All rights reserved.

 

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? With his team, Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast, we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, with no obligation.

 

March 8, 2021

Why Hire a Real Estate Agent to Buy from a Builder

Realtor Couple

How a Real Estate Agent Can Help When Buying From a Builder

Q: Do I need to hire a real estate agent to represent me when I buy a new home from a Treasure Coast new home builder?

A: Legally, no. But if you donʼt, you might be missing out on some tangible benefits that impact your wallet and how much you get for your money. There are many reasons why an agent is a sound investment during the purchase process with a builder. While some of them can be quite complex (and go beyond the scope of this blog post), here are a few highlights:

Market Value Compared to Purchase Price: How much money are you going to be able to come out of pocket for your down payment? If you donʼt want a nasty surprise when it comes to disparities between your agreed-upon purchase price and the actual market value of the home, youʼll want an agent with access to information that will help you accurately assess the true value of that brand new home.

Negotiation Power: Real estate agents are professional negotiators, and often an agent can get more from a builder than you would on your own. While some might be related to purchase price, other perks may include property or home upgrades.

Financing: Itʼs probably no surprise that your builder will have preferred financing partners to work with. Many of those “partners” pay good money for the opportunity to handle your loan. But is it the best loan at the best rate? An agent can be both a sounding board for financing terms and a source for trusted alternatives.

Contract Expertise: While your real estate agent isnʼt an attorney, they know a great deal about the ins-and-outs of property contracts. This includes builderʼs contracts, which may have provisions that put you in the dicey territory should something unforeseen happen. Protect yourself with an agent.

These four reasons are a good place to start, but there are plenty more. The bottom line is: The builder will have their own system to maximize their profit and minimize their costs. Shouldnʼt you? Iʼm is more than happy to help you buy from a builder.

 

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? With his team, Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast, we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, with no obligation.

 

March 7, 2021

5 Tips to Predict House Values in any Neighborhood

House Values

How Local Economic Factors Impact Stuart, Florida Home Values

How do you predict the value of a neighborhood? While no one can say for sure how home values in a neighborhood will rise or decline over time, there are big-picture economic factors that you can look for to help get a handle on where they may be going.

1. Major regional employers. If a community depends upon one or two large companies for a high percentage of local employment, you can bet that as the company fares, so will the neighborhoods. While "company towns" are hardly the norm these days, don't overlook the possibility.

2. Number of properties currently for sale. Sometimes there's nothing wrong with a neighborhood just because the inventory (i.e., number of homes on the market) is high. Other times, something may be amiss. If you see street-after-street of "FOR SALE" signs, ask questions.

3. Major construction. Is that a new school they're building, or is it a supermax prison? Did they clear that land for a new shopping center, or is it a new loop for the interstate? Certain types of construction can improve home values while others can hurt. Getting in touch with the local planning commission and the local newspaper's business section (or website) can help illuminate what's behind those bulldozers and cement mixers.

4. Rental density. People who own the homes they live in intend to take better care of them. Also, it's preferable to have long-term neighbors versus high-turnover tenants. Absentee landlords or seasonally rented properties can also be a drag on a neighborhood. Get a feel for the rental density and the direction it's heading. Rental density matters.

5. Environmental conditions. One industrial accident that poisons a water supply is enough to annihilate home values. How susceptible is the region to extreme weather? Don't rule out environmental liabilities or benefits.

Nobody's crystal ball is perfect, but to ignore major macroeconomic factors is dangerous. Even if you're only planning on staying in a location for 5 - 7 years, do yourself a favor and try to position yourself to make, not lose money, on your home with these tips in mind.

 

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? With his team, Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast, we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, with no obligation.

 

March 1, 2021

Note to Sellers Who Are Also Buying: A Closing Date Is a Closing Date

Closing day has arrived but you haven’t found a place to move to? Option to help avert costly legal issues.

Closing Tips

Pitfalls to Avoid When Selling and Buying Houses Simultaneously

By Meredith Caruso

Some homeowners jumped into today’s hot sellers’ market, fielded multiple offers, got top dollar, and signed contracts within 48 hours. At the time, they may have considered their next home selection “a bridge we’ll cross when we come to it.” But sometimes there’s no bridge.

ORLANDO, Fla. – 2020 was a heckuva year. Everyone’s daily routine had to be adjusted thanks to the pandemic. One thing that remained solid, however, was the real estate industry. The market, in a word, is HOT.

While this is a good thing, to be sure, our Legal Hotline has received an uptick in calls regarding sellers who eagerly list their home to get top dollar – but then, come closing day, they haven’t found a place to move. This can only lead to costly legal issues, which we all want to avoid.

So how can you help avoid this problem? I’ve said it before, and I will repeat it: PLAN.

I get it, as an agent, securing a listing is “having a great day.” But in a time when properties are on the market less than 48 hours after several competitive offers come in, it’s important to have a frank discussion with your sellers about their plans. Do they have eyes on another property? What do they intend to do – buy or rent? Are they moving out of state? Do they have an agent they’re actively working with to find a new home? How far along in the process are they?

When should these questions be asked? I’d wager that they should be asked when the listing is taken and not 25 days into a contract.

Unfortunately, some sellers may be so pumped about the hot market and getting the best offer that they aren’t thinking about their long-term plans. As a listing agent, you should be incorporating these types of questions when you are taking the listing, so you are on the same page as the seller.

If you’re representing the buyer, I’d suggest communicating regularly with the listing agent regarding the sellers’ progress on moving out. Schedule your walk-through to occur the day before or the day of closing, and schedule it well in advance.

Sure, some alternatives might work in the event the seller is unable to find a new property to move to – however, those alternatives all involve the parties' cooperation. A seller may get a specialized lease drafted that provides for the seller to rent back the property from the buyer until a new property is located. The parties can also agree to an extension of the closing date – but this may not work with buyers who are financing their purchase if the lender increases any loan costs due to the closing delay.

Of course, both are more viable options if the sellers are already under contract on a new home or need a few more days to move out. The sellers who have no clue where they’re going? They may have a battle ahead.

So, at the risk of beating a dead horse, here is we're taking some time in advance to map out the sellers’ intentions can negate a panicked call to the Legal Hotline when, two days before closing, you realize the sellers don’t intend to leave because they don’t have anywhere to go.

Meredith Caruso is Associate General Counsel for Florida Realtors

© 2021 Florida Realtors®


If you’re considering buying or selling a home before the new year or in early 2021, contact us now to schedule a free consultation. We’ll work with you to develop an actionable plan to meet your goals.

 

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? With his team, Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast, we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, with no obligation.

 

Feb. 27, 2021

Discover the Basque Vineyard, BC

Develop Your Own Canadian Winery or Cannabis Cultivation Enterprise

Overview

Welcome to the Basque Vineyard BC Inc., a Canadian corporation licensed for the growth and manufacture of Hemp, Cannabis, and wine products in Ashcroft, British Columbia. The Vineyard has been completely upgraded, including a new drip irrigation system and plans for subdividing the 31.01-acre property into three parcels of 10+ acres each. The Basque Vineyard, Inc. is currently offered for sale and an in-hand Canadian license issued for the cultivation of Cannabis. Contact us today for more information about this rare opportunity to live and work in western Canada's beautiful Basque region.

Basque vineyard BC is a stunning 12.23 acres plus 31.01 acres property located on the beautiful sloping hillsides of the Basque region part of the South Caribou overlooking the majestic Thompson river.

Its southern exposure, sunny arid climate, and down gently sloping hills make it a more fertile environment for Grape and grape and hemp cultivation than the wine country in Spain and France. The potential of this area is limitless.

Basque Winery

Located south of Ashcroft, a 20-minute drive from the downtown area, this once-thriving vineyard produced Grapes used by summer lands: Sumac Ridge Estate winery in 1982.  With well-draining sandy loam soil and south-facing windswept slopes, and a newly installed water system for irrigation, plus a distribution center that has a purification system for drinking and domestic consumption, these are the perfect accompaniments to establish a successful vineyard.

The water pump connects to the water distribution center, then up all the way to the highest point of the slope, which is prepared to supply gravity-fed irrigation to the whole property without disturbing the topsoil.

In addition to the magnificent landscape and Thompson river views, there is a 1200 square foot 2 bedroom 1 bath rancher that boasts Italian ceramic tile flooring, open floor plan, laundry room, sunroom, and Jacuzzi bathtub.  As well as a cozy fireplace to warm up to on those crisp autumn evenings where you can sit and enjoy the views.

Developing Your Own Winery, Vineyard, or Cannabis Cultivation

The potential to develop your own winery, vineyard, and/or hemp cultivation business can be effortless as the current owner has had numerous studies completed, from soil suitability, establishing a drip irrigation system, and consulting with experts to determine which strains of grapes would do the best with the properties conditions.

 

Basque Winery

Expansion Opportunities

The ability to expand your vineyard is possible as the adjacent 31.01-acre property could be subdivided to 10+ acres each. Basque Vineyard BC Inc., with a license to grow hemp (the managing company of both properties), is also up for sale if the buyer needs to acquire it for immigration purposes.

Let your imagination run and create the winery, vineyard, and Hemp farm of your dreams!

Note: all drawings in the photos are Architectural concepts, and the buildings shown do not exist at present. Only the 1,200 square feet house and water distribution center exist.

 

Basque Vineyard BC

 Download the Basque Vineyards Site Plan

 

Contact Us to learn more about investment opportunities. Whether buying or selling, we are always happy to discuss your wants and needs with no obligation.

 

Eric Slifkin, a Broker Associate, is the founder of the Slifkin Team at Keller Williams Realty. Eric and his experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Port Saint Lucie, and the Palm Beaches.

 

Feb. 22, 2021

A Strong Housing Market Expected in 2021

2021 Real Estate Market

Housing Market Fervor Expected to Continue into 2021

“2020 will be known for a lot of things, and a record-breaking year for real estate will certainly be one of its more unexpected legacies,” prominent economist Daryl Fairweather said. And he’s right: most of us would have expected the housing market to suffer from circumstances like a once-in-a-hundred-year pandemic and historic inventory shortages. 

But, rather than a slowdown, we are continuing to experience a surprisingly robust real estate market across the country. And experts estimate that these conditions are likely to last well into the new year. Fannie Mae Senior VP and Chief Economist, Doug Duncan, predicts that existing-home sales will ultimately “be up a percent or more in 2021.” He believes home prices will continue to rise due to limited inventory. Still, he is confident the Federal Reserve will keep interest rates low into the future, which will be “very good for households.”

Market conditions like fewer available listings, changing criteria for desired homes, and record-low mortgage rates change the way people buy and sell homes, most likely in a lasting way. But this sustained activity, even in the uncertainty that is 2020, proves that our country still views real estate as a sound investment. The only question now is how can you take advantage of the “new normal?” 

Seller's Market

Fewer Listings = A Seller's Market

Inventory, meaning the number of homes for sale, is at a record low across the country. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reports there are fewer homes on the market today than the association has seen in data going all the way back to 1982. Currently, the total housing inventory is about 1.47 million units, which is a decline of 19.2% from one year ago.

The New Normal for Homebuyers and Homesellers

Industry groups such as MarketWatch had previously anticipated housing starts would occur at a pace of 1.45 million, and building permits would come in at a pace of 1.52 million. But it turns out that the market exceeded expectations: compared with last year, housing starts are up over 11%, and new home permits occurred at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 1.55 million, which represents an 8% year-on-year increase.

For now, the fact that there are fewer listings creates an advantageous housing market for sellers. But buyers have to act fast to snap up available homes. As a result, most properties that come on the market stay for an average of around 21 days before they are sold. “That is the fastest ever recorded in our monthly series,” says NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun.

Another benefit is that sellers are enjoying higher net returns on their listings. This is thanks to the tough competition for homes, which often results in bidding wars between buyers. Nationwide, the median home price in September rose to $311,800. That translates to about $40,000 (15%) more than just a year ago.

This seller’s market is not simply a product of the pandemic. In fact, in the country’s top 100 metro markets, inventory has been dwindling since the first quarter of 2020. This means that even with increased construction, buyers can’t simply wait for things to go back to normal before reentering the market. Rather, all signs indicate that this is the new normal.

2021 Real estate Market

What It Means for Homeowners: 

These higher home prices show that buyers are willing to spend more on a home right now than they did last year. So, if there ever were a time to list for top dollar—and expect to receive the asking price quickly—that time is now. Ask us for a free consultation of your home’s value today.

What It Means for Homebuyers:

Due to low inventory, buyers could easily find themselves in a bidding war. Time is of the essence in a seller’s market, so you’ll need to get your financing in order and be preapproved for a loan before you begin your home search. We can connect you with a trusted mortgage professional to get you started.

Buyers Benefit From Low Mortgage Rates, Bigger Playing Field

Don’t worry, homebuyers. This “new normal” of real estate has benefits for you too. 

For example, people used to base their next home purchase on how far the commute was to work or in which public school district it was. But now, thanks to the pandemic shifting the locus of jobs and work, they are free to consider what they need from home to make it a place they truly want to be in as they work, teach, exercise, cook, and live.

Often, this equates to needing more space in different types of areas. Realtor.com consumer surveys show that people desire quieter neighborhoods, home offices, updated kitchens, and access to the great outdoors.9 The search for these criteria drives residents out of densely populated metropolitan areas and into the suburbs.10 And this exodus from cities is good news for buyers: it opens up more possibilities for an inventory that they could not have considered pre-pandemic. 

Another advantage for buyers is the record-low mortgage rates. The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage hit a record low in mid-October when rates fell to 2.81%. That’s the lowest since Freddie Mac began surveying in 1971 and well below last year’s 3.69%. Similarly, you may be able to get a 5-year fixed-rate mortgage for as low as 2.35% compared to 3.15% a year ago.

Thanks to these rates, buyers are allowed to buy nearly $32,000 more homes than they could one year ago while keeping their monthly payments the same.12 So even though home prices are high now, it is currently more affordable to buy a home now than last year.

If you want to take advantage of these rock-bottom mortgage rates, you need to act fast. Though rates are projected to stay low, housing economists predict that the window of opportunity to get the best rate could be closing in the coming months. Mike Fratantoni, a chief economist at the Mortgage Bankers Association, said he expects the average rate on a 30-year mortgage to rise to 3.5% by the end of 2021.

What it Means for Homeowners

Record-low mortgage rates offer you the opportunity to lower your monthly payment—or even take out some equity—with a refinance. With those additional funds, you could even choose to invest in a second home in a new desired location. Reach out to us for a referral to a trusted mortgage professional or an agent in those markets. 

What It Means for Homebuyers

The time is now to determine how much home you can comfortably afford and plan to find it. We can set up a search for you to find homes that best meet your new needs, even if they’re in neighborhoods you wouldn’t have considered before.

A Record-Setting Year for Home Sales is Just the Beginning

2020 US Housing Market Recap

Despite the seemingly adverse buyer conditions, 2020 experienced a 14-year high number of home sales, NAR reports. Existing-home sales, including single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums, and co-ops, rose 9.4% in September to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6.54 million.14 That’s a 21% increase from a year ago! 

Every region of the country has seen a surge in sales activity. According to George Ratiu, senior economist for Realtor.com, part of the reason for these continued sales is that the pandemic has created a paradigm shift in real estate patterns.15 For example, housing needs are typically resolved by late summer and early fall to coincide with the new school year's commencement. However, with homeschooling and remote work, buyers have been freed to continue their home search into the traditionally slow winter months.

Another reason for the robust market is that Millennials are finally putting their money into homeownership. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the homeownership rate for 25-to-34-year-olds rose to 40.7% by the end of last year.16 This is significant because Millennials, the generation of people in their mid-20s to late-30s, currently surpasses Baby Boomers as the nation’s largest living adult generation. As the remaining percentage of this group starts investing in homes soon, demand will persist.

All of these factors indicate that the housing market is poised to remain strong as we head into the new year. And as Jonathan Woloshin, head of U.S. real estate at UBS Global Wealth Management, believes, they could “buoy the housing market for years to come.”

What It Means for Homeowners:

It’s tempting to believe that homes will basically sell themselves in a market like this. But we still see properties that are overpriced and under-marketed sit unsold. We can help you optimize the process of selling your home so you can get the best possible offer.

What It Means for Homebuyers:

Preparation is key to success in a seller’s market like this, but don’t let yourself become paralyzed. We are here to answer your questions and offer sound advice to guide you through all the available options.

Real Estate is a Safe Bet

Your other investments might have been on roller coasters this year, but the real estate market has been steady, competitive, and strong throughout. That makes it a good choice for your financial future.

National real estate numbers can give us a pulse on the market, but real estate happens in our own backyard. As your local market experts, we can help you understand the market's finer points that impact sales and home values in your own neighborhood. 

 

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? With his team, Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast, we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, with no obligation.

 

Feb. 12, 2021

What Is Your Home Worth NOW?

Factors That Can Affect A Home's Fair Market Value

Getting ready to sell? One of the first steps is to know your home's worth or fair market value in today's market. Your home's fair market value is determined by the dollar amount a knowledgeable buyer and seller would agree on within a reasonable amount of time (usually within 90 days).

The fair market value is only an estimate. It also takes into consideration such things as location and home conditions. Fluctuations in the market, interest, and motivation can also affect prices.

Home Values

Factors That Can Affect Your Your Home's Value

 

Get Your Home's Approximate Value With Our Free CMA

Find your home's value with our free CMA (Comparative Market Analysis)

What is a CMA?

A Comparative Market Analysis, or CMA, is a report used to determine the fair market value of a home. Based on local market data, a CMA takes into account recent and pending sales as well as current listings. From this information, we can establish an appropriate listing price for your house. This price may need to be adjusted as the market changes to ensure that your house remains competitively priced.

The fair market value of a home is determined by the dollar amount a knowledgeable buyer and seller would agree on within a reasonable amount of time (usually within 90 days). The fair market value is only an estimate. It also takes into consideration such things as location and home condition. Price adjustments are based on fluctuations in the market, interest, and motivation.

This CMA report includes information on current local listings and other recently sold (or pending sales) in your neighborhood. Although no house is exactly like yours, these are the most similar properties and are often the ones that appraisers use to determine home values. Also factored in are things such as; square footage, location, amenities, property condition, and existing financing. All included data has come from the most reliable sources: local real estate firms, title companies, and the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).

View More
Feb. 11, 2021

Six Essential Homebuyer Tips

We recently surveyed several hundred real estate professionals and industry experts to determine the top home buying tips they would actually recommend to their clients.

Home Buying Tips

More Tips

Get a Home Inspection

91.4 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.54 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Get a home inspection to evaluate the safety and overall condition of your new home, even if it appears flawless.

Get Preapproved for a Loan

89.0 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.78 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Before you start house hunting, get preapproved for a mortgage loan.

Communicate Through Your Agent

89.0 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.27 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: When you want to ask or tell the seller something, always go through your real estate agent.

Put the Deal Into Writing

87.5 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.83 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Get the seller to put every component of the deal and any verbal agreement into writing.

Include Contingencies With Offer

83.0 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.78 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Include important contingencies, such as financing and property inspections, with your offer.

Develop a Wish List

82.4 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

0.27 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Come up with a realistic wish list. Find out what you can afford in terms of house size, neighborhood and amenities.

Know Your Local Market

75.6 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

1.7 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Know as much about the local market as you can. Use your agent’s CMA to learn about the selling price of comparable homes and the strength of the local real estate market.

Prioritize!

68.5 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

1.11 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Decide what’s most important to you before the negotiation so you know what parts of your offer you’re most comfortable giving up.

Look Into Government Programs

57.7 of agents say this is a very important tip.

1.36 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Look into programs for first-time homebuyers. See if you qualify for the lower interest rates, low down payment options and down payment assistance programs some banks and governmental organizations offer first-time homebuyers.

Research Real Estate Agents

54.7 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

7.61 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Don’t just work with the first real estate agent you come across! Do your homework and find one you’re comfortable with.

Keep Other Houses in Mind

43.9 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

5.8 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: When you begin negotiating on a specific property, know of other houses you’d be interested in buying. You don’t want to be so desperate to buy a certain house that you give in to whatever the seller wants.

Be Smart With Your Contingencies

40.6 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

9 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Avoid including unnecessary contingencies in your offer. Doing so will make it less attractive.

Keep Negotiations Short

39.8 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

4.8 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Avoid long, drawn-out negotiations, which can negatively affect the chances of your offer being accepted.

Shop around for Mortgages

37.9 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

4.7 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Shop around for at least several mortgage quotes before choosing one.

Ask for More Than You Want

32.1 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

10.1 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Ask for more than you want during negotiations, without asking too much. You can “give in” to the seller without actually giving up the things you want!

Scope out Neighborhoods, Neighbors

31.9 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

7.1 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Talk to neighbors to get the inside scoop on what it’s like to live in the neighborhoods of homes you are interested in. While doing so, gauge if you would like to live next to these people for the foreseeable future. Bad neighbors can affect your property’s value.

Connect With the Sellers

24.9 percent of agents say this is a very important tip.

27.5 percent of agents don’t recommend this tip.

The tip: Establish a connection with the sellers. You may be able to get a better deal if the sellers see you as a person, not just an opportunity.

Source: Market Leader

This post has been authored by Eric Slifkin, REALTOR® serving South Florida’s Treasure Coast. You can reach me at 888-288-1765, or visit my Web site. As your resource for information on new or resale homes throughout the Treasure Coast, please be sure to contact me about any home you may find on the Web, yard sign or ad and I will research the property, arrange showings and handle all the details.

 

Feb. 11, 2021

Home Buying in a Seller’s Market

Home Buying

Questions to Consider in a Seller’s Market: Multiple Offers

When home buyers outnumber sellers, the result can be a multiple offer scenario. If you’re searching for homes in a competitive market environment, you’ll want to take time to understand the dynamics of multiple offers and understand how this might impact your negotiating strategy.

Some questions to discuss with your buyer’s representative:

 

  1. Will I know if I’m in a multiple offer situation? Not necessarily. Typically it works to a seller’s advantage if buyers are told they are competing with one another. But a seller must give their agent permission to disclose the existence of other offers before this can be shared with your buyer’s rep.

  2. How will offers be presented to the seller? The seller decides how they want this handled, either individually or as a group presentation. Once presented, a seller can elect to accept (or counter) one offer, reject all offers, or reject all offers in conjunction with a request to resubmit a “highest and best” offer.

  3. Will the details of my offer be kept confi dential from other buyers? The only way to preserve confi dentiality is to ask the sellers to sign a confi dentiality agreement before presenting your offer (which also applies to their agent). However, if the seller decides to have a group presentation of offers, you’ll either have to withdraw your offer or revoke the confi dentiality agreement.

  4. If my offer has the highest price, can I be confi dent that I’ll beat out other buyers? No. Sellers can accept whichever offer they consider “best” and that may be based on other factors, like the certainty of closing (e.g., the buyer is already approved on their mortgage) or fl exibility on closing dates.

  5. What are my options for writing a stronger offer? In addition to firming up your financing (or paying cash) and offering flexibility on timing, there are a number of other things you can do, including eliminating contingencies, increasing your earnest money deposit or paying closing costs, to name a few. Discuss your options with your buyer’s rep.

  6. If I don’t want to compete with other buyers, can I withdraw my offer? Yes, as long as you deliver notifi cation to the seller revoking your offer before they've accepted it.Every home buyer benefi ts from having their interests represented in a real estate transaction, but in a multiple offer scenario, you’ll gain even more if you’re working with an Accredited Buyer’s Representative. Discuss these and other questions with your buyer’s rep so you can anticipate each step in the negotiation process and improve the likelihood of a successful outcome.

Every home buyer benefits from having their interests represented in a real estate transaction, but in a multiple offer scenario, you’ll gain even more if you’re working with an Accredited Buyer’s Representative. Discuss these and other questions with your buyer’s rep so you can anticipate each step in the negotiation process and improve the likelihood of a successful outcome.

Source:  Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council (REBAC)

This post has been authored by Eric Slifkin, REALTOR® and Accredited Buyer’s Representative* serving Florida’s Treasure Coast. You can reach me at 888-288-1765, or visit my Website.

As your resource for information on new or resale homes throughout the Treasure Coast, please be sure to contact me about any home you may find on the Web, yard sign or ad. I will research the property, arrange showings and handle all the details.

*The Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR®) designation is awarded by the Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council (REBAC), a subsidiary of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). To learn more about REBAC and access various home buyer resources, please visit REBAC.net.
Feb. 10, 2021

Selling Your Home Without an Agent

Want to sell your home For Sale By Owner?

9 Step Guide to FSBO (For Sale by Owner)

Selling your home is a huge decision. After quite a bit of research on local realtors in your area and how long the selling process, you may feel that it’s better to sell your home yourself. Commonly referred to as FSBO, For Sale By Owner is when you sell your home without the help of a Realtor or licensed professional. By doing FSBO, you can avoid paying commission, working with an agent, and you have complete control over your listing.

If you’re ready to sell your home but unsure where to start, we made a step by step guide on how to FSBO.

Step 1: Price your home accurately

According to NAR, 17% of people who have done FSBO said pricing their homes was the most challenging task. Not only can pricing your home be difficult but accurately pricing your home can be close to impossible. According to Trulia research, homes priced by owners are an average of 2% higher than homes listed by agents. Although that may sound good, it doesn’t necessarily mean they will sell at that price. Inaccurately pricing a residence may cause it to stay on the market longer.

To accurately price your home, here are a few things you should research:

  • Current prices for homes similar to yours in your city and neighborhood. Because you aren’t a Realtor, it’s impossible to pull an accurate list of comparable homes without access to the MLS data, so you may need to rely on Zillow and Trulia aren’t always accurate. However, you can get a free home value report here.
  • Calculate the ROI of any improvements and renovations you’ve made to your home. Depending on how many improvements you’ve made, this can take quite a bit of time and research. You’ll also want to be careful not to over or underprice the ROI since that will directly affect your home value.
  • Prices overtime to find any market trends. Again, it will be more challenging to find accurate data about the market over time without access to MLS data.

Step 2: Prepare your home.

Since you won’t have an agent that offers their knowledge and expertise on home improvements that buyers look for, you will have to decide what should be upgraded or repaired in your home. To determine what should be updated, weigh the costs of the projects you think should be completed against your home's value from step 1. After making any necessary renovations to show buyers you’ve put work into your home, you will need to stage your home.

Staging is the process of strategically arranging the furniture and decor in your home to be show-ready so buyers can imagine living there. According to NAR, 83% of buyers’ agents said buyers could better visualize living in a house if staged. 22% of sellers’ agents saw the dollar value of offers increased 1-5% when they saw a staged home, and 17% saw the dollar value of the home increased 6-10% compared to similar homes. Many agents offer their staging services as part of the selling process, but you can either hire a professional stager for an additional cost or do it yourself since you are on your own. If you decide to stage yourself, the rooms you should prioritize are the kitchen, living room, master bedroom, and dining room.

Not only does the inside of your home need to look perfect, but so does the outside. Curb appeal is how your home looks from the street and is another crucial step you don’t want to overlook. It’s the first impression potential buyers will have of your home, so you’ll want to make sure the exterior is also show-ready. According to NAR, landscape maintenance, overall landscape upgrade, and standard lawn care service rank as the highest projects that should add value to your home when selling.

Home Valuation

Step 3: Photograph your home.

Once your home is prepared and staged, it’s time to photograph your home. Although the newest iPhone has a pretty good camera, hiring a professional who knows everything about lighting and the most appealing angles will be worth the extra cost. According to the Center for REALTOR® Development (CRD), homes with high-quality photos sell 32% faster, and the more photos you have, the faster your home will sell. Homes listed from $200,000 to $1,000,000 with professional photos have sold for $3,000 to $11,000 more.

Most Realtors offer professional photography and 3D tours and videos as part of their services, so if you have the budget, this is something you want to consider.

Step 4: List your home.

After all the preparations you’ve made for your home, you’re finally ready to create your listing. Unfortunately, only real estate agents can create listings on the MLS. After they list on the MLS, the listing is automatically put on sites like Zillow and Trulia, where buyers agents can find the newest listings to show their clients.

You can list your home yourself as FSBO on Zillow or pay a "limited service" broker to list your home on the MLS.

For homeowners who need to sell quickly because of death, disaster, debt, divorce, or other life events, iBuying or instant offer services and agents who offer these options enable home sellers to quickly sell their property to a company rather than to an individual.

Step 5: Know your home disclosure requirements.

If you’re selling your home on your own, you will need to research your state's requirements for what you need to disclose in your home. A seller disclosure includes what sellers must tell buyers about their home. Seller disclosures can include structural problems, past issues such as flooding, and any repairs or upgrades you’ve made on your home. A seller disclosure will save you time from any surprises that may come up in a home inspection. If you do have any shocks or bumps in your home inspection, you could incur expensive and unnecessary repairs or demands from buyers.

Step 6: Market your home.

Now that your home is (hopefully) listed, it’s time to market your home. Although you may think a for sale sign in your yard is good enough, it’s not. In selling your home, we typically start with an email blast to our database of buyer leads we’ve accumulated over the years. You could send an email to friends and family, letting them know your home is now on the market but may find it hard to get results that way.

Next, we usually set up an ad on Facebook and Instagram and target potential buyers in our area. According to NAR, members found social media as the most valuable source to obtain high-quality leads. With more than 1 billion monthly active users on Instagram and 2.41 billion monthly active users on Facebook, marketing your home on social media is one thing you don’t want to neglect. You could post about your home on your page, but exposure and reach will be limited, and the quality of leads may be inadequate.

For some of our listings, we will even put together a video to share on social media. To get a more detailed example of what we do to market our listings, check our marketing page here.

Step 7: Communicate with potential buyers.

Hopefully, by now, you’ve acquired a few leads that have started to show interest in your home. Even though you don’t have an agent, your potential buyer probably does, which means you’ll be responsible for all communication with them throughout the process. You will need to be on top of emails, texts, and phone calls to schedule showings and meetings with your potential buyers and their agents and be responsive to any questions they may have about your home. Just remember to be patient and think about your responses - selling your home (especially on your own) can be emotional and make you say things you didn’t mean.

Step 8: Hire third-party experts

You might want to hire an attorney to help you throughout the selling process, especially when signing legal documents, purchase agreements, and seller disclosures. Some states even require representation from an attorney when you close. Although this can be costly, it’s ultimately for your protection throughout the process.

Step 9: Wait for offers.

And now we wait. Depending on how much effort you’ve put into the preparations, staging, marketing, and listing of your home will determine how long it will take your home to sell. According to Inman, 18% of FSBOs did not sell their home in the timeline they were hoping for, and the average FSBO home was sold for $200,000 while homes sold by agents were $265,500 in 2017. Homes sold through the MLS were sold on average 20 days faster, according to NAR.

 

Are you feeling overwhelmed? If the selling process seems like too much to handle on your own, we're here to help.

Schedule a call to learn more about how we help home sellers on the Treasure Coast.

 

Eric Slifkin, Broker Associate

Eric Slifkin, Team Lead

Your local real estate expert

Are you seeking a home that suits your lifestyle, community, and neighborhood needs? With his team, Eric offers home buyers a turn-key approach to finding and purchasing real estate from the Treasure Coast to the Palm Beaches and beyond.

 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Whether buying or selling a home on the Treasure Coast, we are always happy to meet with you to discuss your wants and needs, with no obligation.

Eric Slifkin has authored this post, a Broker Associate at Keller Williams Real Estate and the Slifkin Real Estate Team founder. Eric and his experienced agents serve South Florida and the Treasure Coast, including  Stuart, Hobe Sound, Palm City, Port Saint Lucie, Jupiter, Tequesta, and the Palm Beaches.

 

 

Leave a Comment

 

Web Analytics