What Should You Look for In Your Real Estate Team?

What Should You Look for In Your Real Estate Team? | Simplifying The Market

What Should You Look for In Your Real Estate Team?

How do you select the members of your team who are going to help make your dream of owning a home a reality? What should you be looking for? How do you know if you’ve found the right agent or lender?

The most important characteristic that you should be looking for in your agent is someone who is going to take the time to really educate you on the choices available to you and your ability to buy in today’s market.

As the financial guru Dave Ramsey advises:

“When getting help with money, whether it’s insurance, real estate or investments, you should always look for someone with the heart of a teacher, not the heart of a salesman.”

Do your research. Ask your friends and family for recommendations of professionals they’ve worked with in the past and have had good experiences with.

Look for members of your team who will be honest and trustworthy; after all, you will be trusting them to help you make one of the biggest financial decisions of your life.

Whether this is your first or fifth time buying a home, you want to make sure that you have an agent who is going to have the tough conversations with you, not just the easy ones. If your offer isn’t accepted by the seller, or they think that there may be something wrong with the home that you’ve fallen in love with, you would rather know what they think than make a costly mistake.

According to the Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends Report:

Buyers from all generations primarily wanted their agent’s help to find the right home to purchase. Buyers were also looking for help to negotiate the terms of sale and to help with price negotiations.”Additionally, “Help understanding the purchase process was most beneficial to buyers 37 years and younger at 75 percent.”

Look for someone to invest in your family’s future with you. You want an agent who isn’t focused on the transaction but is instead focused on helping you understand the process while helping you find your dream home.

Bottom Line

In this world of Google searches, where it seems like all the answers are just a mouse-click away, you need an agent who is going to educate you and share the information that you need to know before you even know you need it.


Posted on April 3, 2018 at 9:00 pm
Ted Mansfield | Posted in Buying a home, First Time Buyers, Investment, Luxury market, Mortgage, Move Up Buyers, Real Estate, Selling your home |

GREEN Homes Introduction

In the next few weeks, I’ll be posting many new features and information about Green Homes that I’ve learned from earning my National Association of Realtor’s GREEN designation.

Whether you want to improve the resale value of your home or are looking for a new, more resource-efficient property, a REALTOR® with NAR’s Green Designation
can help.

NAR Green Designees really know green. While considering updates to your home, I can help you understand the advantages of resource-efficient upgrades to existing homes, interpret the benefits of high performance features, select the best products and professionals, research information on improving resource use, and access a variety of credits, incentives, and programs designed to help you make your home more resource efficient.

Why use a GREEN Designee? (click the link to be taken to the Green Designee website with specialized answers for Buyers, Sellers, or Builders.


Posted on March 28, 2018 at 11:08 am
Ted Mansfield | Posted in Buying a home, Green homes, Investment, Move Up Buyers, New Construction, Real Estate, Remodel, Selling your home, Uncategorized |

Are You Aware of How Much Equity You Have in Your Home? You May Be Surprised!

Are You Aware of How Much Equity You Have in Your Home? You May Be Surprised! | Simplifying The Market

Are You Aware of How Much Equity You Have in Your Home? You May Be Surprised!

CoreLogic’s latest Equity Report revealed that 675,000 US homeowners regained positive equity in their homes in 2017. This is great news for the country, as 95.1% of all mortgaged properties are now in a positive equity situation.

U.S homeowners with mortgages (roughly 63% of all the properties) have seen their equity increase by a total of $908.4 billion since the fourth quarter 2016, an increase of 12.2%, year over year.”

Price Appreciation = Good News for Homeowners

Frank Nothaft, CoreLogic’s Chief Economist, explains:

Home-price growth has been the primary driver of home-equity wealth creation. The CoreLogic Home Price Index grew 6.2 percent during 2017. The largest calendar-year increase since 2013. Likewise, the average growth in home equity was more than $15,000 during 2017, the most in four years.”

He also believes this is a great sign for the market in 2018, saying:

“Because wealth gains spur additional consumer purchases, the rise in home-equity wealth during 2017 should add more than $50 billion to U.S. consumption spending over the next two to three years.”  

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

A study by Fannie Mae suggests that many homeowners are not aware that they have regained equity in their homes as their investment has increased in value. For example, their study showed that 23% of Americans still believe their home is in a negative equity position when, in actuality, CoreLogic’s report shows that only 4.9% of homes are in that position (down from 6.3% in Q4 2016).

The study also revealed that only 37% of Americans believe that they have “significant equity” (greater than 20%) when in actuality, 83% do!

Are You Aware of How Much Equity You Have in Your Home? You May Be Surprised! | Simplifying The Market

This means that 46% of Americans with a mortgage fail to realize the opportune situation they are in. With a sizeable equity position, many homeowners could easily move into a house (either larger or smaller) that better meets their current needs.

Fannie Mae spoke out on this issue in their report:

“Homeowners who underestimate their homes’ values not only underestimate their home equity, they also likely underestimate 1) how large a down payment they could make with their home equity, 2) their chances of qualifying for mortgages, and, therefore, 3) their opportunities for selling their current homes and for buying different homes.”

Bottom Line

If you are one of the many Americans who is unsure of how much equity you have built in your home, don’t let that be the reason you fail to move on to your dream home in 2018! Let’s get together to evaluate your situation!

 

 

 


Posted on March 21, 2018 at 12:48 pm
Ted Mansfield | Posted in Active listing, Finance, Mortgage, Move Up Buyers, Real Estate, Selling your home |

The relation between interest rates and your purchasing power

Hoe does interest affect home buying power?

We all know that higher interest means higher payments. But what does that mean in real world numbers? The following infographic shows just that. A 1 point jump in interest basically means 10% less house when looking at a $700,000 house. The highlighted numbers in the table show what the same payment buys across a range of home prices.

What does it mean to me right now?

As we are foreseeing a slight bump in interest in the next year, you might want to consider making your jump now to get the most house you can.


Posted on February 23, 2018 at 10:52 am
Ted Mansfield | Posted in Buying a home, Finance, First Time Buyers, Investment, Mortgage, Move Up Buyers, Real Estate, Uncategorized |

The Mortgage Process: What You Need to Know [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Mortgage Process: What You Need to Know:
The Mortgage Process: What You Need to Know [INFOGRAPHIC] | Simplifying The Market

 

Some Highlights:

  • The Mortgage Process may seem complicated, but broken down into steps it becomes fairly straightforward.
  • Many buyers are purchasing a home with a down payment as little as 3%.
  • You may already qualify for a loan, even if you don’t have perfect credit.
  • Get pre-approved BEFORE looking or searching for homes.
  • Talk to your real estate professional for referrals to mortgage brokers and lenders they know and trust. Your Realtor is there for much more than just showing you homes.
  • Take advantage of the knowledge of your local professionals who are there to help you determine how much you can afford.

Posted on February 23, 2018 at 10:24 am
Ted Mansfield | Posted in Buying a home, First Time Buyers, Mortgage, Move Up Buyers, Real Estate | Tagged , , , , ,

5 Reasons to Love Using A Real Estate Pro [INFOGRAPHIC]

5 Reasons to Love Using A RE Pro [INFOGRAPHIC] | Simplifying The Market

 

Highlights:

  • Hiring a real estate professional to guide you through the process of buying a home or selling your house can be one of the best decisions you make!
  • They are there for you to help with paperwork, understanding the process, negotiations, and helping you with pricing (both when making an offer or setting the right price for your home).
  • One of the top reasons to hire a real estate professional is their understanding of your local market and how the conditions in your neighborhood will impact your experience.

Posted on February 10, 2018 at 6:41 pm
Ted Mansfield | Posted in Buying a home, Finance, Investment, Mortgage, Real Estate, Selling your home | Tagged , , , ,

Eastside Market Review – 4th Quarter 2017

Our Eastside Market Review is now available for the fourth quarter of 2017.

You can read the full report online by clicking the image below.

Eastside Market Review Q4 2017


Posted on February 7, 2018 at 3:29 pm
Ted Mansfield | Posted in Buying a home, Investment, Luxury market, Mortgage, Real Estate, Selling your home |

Where Are Mortgage Interest Rates Headed in 2018?

Where Are Mortgage Interest Rates Headed in 2018? | Simplifying The Market

The interest rate you pay on your home mortgage has a direct impact on your monthly payment. The higher the rate the greater the payment will be. That is why it is important to know where rates are headed when deciding to start your home search.

Below is a chart created using Freddie Mac’s U.S. Economic & Housing Marketing Outlook. As you can see, interest rates are projected to increase steadily over the course of the next 12 months.

Where Are Interest Rates Headed? | Simplifying The Market

How Will This Impact Your Mortgage Payment?

Depending on the amount of the loan that you secure, a half of a percent (.5%) increase in interest rate can increase your monthly mortgage payment significantly.

According to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index, national home prices have appreciated 7.0% from this time last year and are predicted to be 4.2% higher next year.

If both the predictions of home price and interest rate increases become reality, families would wind up paying considerably more for their next home.

Bottom Line 

Even a small increase in interest rate can impact your family’s wealth. Let’s get together to evaluate your ability to purchase your dream home.


Posted on February 7, 2018 at 3:26 pm
Ted Mansfield | Posted in Finance, Investment, Mortgage, Real Estate |

Bidding wars – how long will they continue?

Bidding Wars Abound… How Long Will They Continue? | Simplifying The Market

Bidding Wars Abound… How Long Will They Continue?

Just like with any product or service, the law of supply and demand impacts home prices. Any time that there is less supply than the market demands, prices increase.

In many areas of the country, the supply of homes for sale in the starter and trade-up home markets is so low that bidding wars have ensued, and the busy spring-buying season is just around the corner.

CoreLogic recently conducted an analysis on national home prices at the time of sale for their January 2018 MarketPulse Report and found that a third of homes sold for at least list price.

“The share selling above list price was almost three times the trough in January 2008 and represented more than one-fifth of total sales.”

Many markets in the western part of the country and around major cities are experiencing higher shares of homes selling above list price.

“San Francisco had the largest share of homes—76 percent—that sold for at least the list price, and Seattle and Los Angeles followed with 63 and 51 percent, respectively. Miami had the lowest share—16 percent—of homes selling at or above the list price.”

Increased demand during the spring and summer months, the traditionally busier seasons for real estate, will no doubt influence how many homes continue to sell over list price.

This should not be seen by sellers as permission to overprice their homes, though. Buyers are becoming more and more educated, especially those who have been searching for their dream homes for a while now while waiting for new inventory to come to market.

Realtor.com gives 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.”

Bottom Line

Without a large wave of new listings coming to market, buyers will continue competing with each other for the homes that are available. If you are thinking of selling your home, now may be the time to do so before more competition comes this spring. Let’s get together to determine the demand for your house in our area.


Posted on February 1, 2018 at 1:53 pm
Ted Mansfield | Posted in Buying a home, Finance, Luxury market, Mortgage, Real Estate, Selling your home |

5 Reasons Millennials Choose to Buy

5 Reasons Millennials Choose to Buy [INFOGRAPHIC] | Simplifying The Market

 

Some Highlights:

  • “The majority of millennials said they consider owning a home more sensible than renting for both financial and lifestyle reasons — including control of living space, flexibility in future decisions, privacy and security, and living in a nice home.”
  • The top reason millennials choose to buy is to have control over their living space, at 93%.
  • Many millennials who rent a home or apartment prior to buying their own homes dream of the day when they will be able to paint the walls whatever color they’d like, or renovate an outdated part of their living space.

Posted on January 26, 2018 at 12:52 pm
Ted Mansfield | Posted in Buying a home, Community, Investment, Real Estate |