Sell NOW, Before the Competition Hits the Market

The real estate market is not only hot, it’s been in full flame for quite some time. But how long will this last?

In their current edition of the Home Price Expectation Survey released last week, Pulsenomics asked this question of the 100+ economists, real estate experts and investment & market strategists they surveyed:

“In your opinion, what is the primary driver of recent home value growth in the U.S.?”

Here are the top four reasons given by those surveyed:

Sell NOW Before Competition Hits the Market | Simplifying The Market

As we have stated before, the current lack of inventory in most housing markets has caused home appreciation to increase at greater percentages than historical averages. This means that this is a great time to sell your home as supply is low and demand is high.

However, things may be about to change…

The fortuitous situation sellers see themselves in may soon change for three reasons:

  1. As more homeowners realize their equity situation has dramatically improved over the last four years, they will be more likely to put their homes on the market.
  2. With the residential real estate sector outperforming a sluggish economy, more home builders will be looking to add new construction inventory to a depleted supply of housing stock.
  3. Many banks are just now foreclosing on loans that have been delinquent since the housing bust. These houses will also be coming to market.

According to Daren Blomquist, senior vice president of RealtyTrac, in the Q2 2016 U.S. Residential Property Vacancy and Zombie Foreclosure Report:

“Lenders have been taking advantage of the strong seller’s market to dispose of lingering foreclosure inventory.” 

Bottom Line

In most housing markets, don’t wait for this additional competition to hit the market. If you are considering selling your house, now may be the time.

To get started: Click here to find out how much your home is worth in today’s market.

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If You Are Thinking of Selling, Now Is The Time

Getting an early startIf you thought about selling your house this year, now may be the time to do it. The inventory of homes for sale is well below historic norms and buyer demand is skyrocketing. We were still in high school when we learned the concept of supply and demand: the best time to sell something is when supply of that item is low and demand for that item is high. That defines today’s real estate market.

Jonathan Smoke, the Chief Economist of realtor.com, in a recent article revealed that:

“Would-be buyers face a dilemma: There will be more homes on the market over each week of the next three to four months, but there will also be even more prospective buyers. We are entering the busiest season of home buying with the lowest amount of inventory in three years. To be competitive, buyers should get pre-approved for a mortgage and be ready to act quickly if they find a home that meets their needs.”

Smoke goes on to say:

“Listings are growing as they normally do this time of the year, but because demand has been growing faster than supply, homes are selling faster. So the monthly trend is the normal seasonal pattern, but the year-over-year decline is reflective of demand being stronger than supply for more than a year, which is resulting in fewer homes available and faster-moving inventory.”

In this type of market, a seller may hold a major negotiating advantage when it comes to price and other aspects of the real estate transaction including the inspection, appraisal and financing contingencies.

Bottom Line

As a potential seller, you are in the driver’s seat right now. It might be time to hit the gas.

To get started: Click here to find out how much your home is worth in today’s market.

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Rent? Buy? Either Way, You’re Paying a Mortgage!

There are some renters that 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 your mortgage or your landlord’s.

 

As The Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University explains:

“Households must consume housing whether they own or rent. Not even accounting for more favorable tax treatment of owning, homeowners pay debt service to pay down their own principal while households that rent pay down the principal of a landlord plus a rate of return.  

That’s yet another reason owning often does—as Americans intuit—end up making more financial sense than renting.”

Christina Boyle, a Senior Vice President, Head of Single-Family Sales & Relationship Management at Freddie Mac, explains another benefit of securing a mortgage vs. paying rent:

“With a 30-year fixed rate mortgage, you’ll have the certainty & stability of knowing what your mortgage payment will be for the next 30 years – unlike rents which will continue to rise over the next three decades.”

As an owner, your mortgage payment is a form of ‘forced savings’ that allows you to have 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.

The graph below shows the widening gap in net worth between a homeowner and a renter:Increasing Gap in Family Wealth

Bottom Line

Whether you are looking for a primary residence for the first time or are considering a vacation home on the shore, owning might make more sense than renting with home values and interest rates projected to climb.

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Things to Consider when BUYING A HOME
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Your Home Purchasing Power, Visualized

Now that the housing market has stabilized, more and more homeowners are considering moving up to the home they have always dreamed of. Prices are near those of a few years ago but interest rates have stayed near historic lows.

Sellers should realize that waiting to make the move when mortgage rates are projected to increase probably doesn’t make sense. As rates increase, the price of the house you can afford will decrease if you plan to stay within a certain budget for your monthly housing costs. 

Here’s what I’m trying to say, look at this chart:2500_month_mortgage

I’m currently helping a move-up home owner; he was just pre-approved at a 3.5% interest rate on a 30 year loan! Just helped my sister-in-law buy her first home 2 months ago; she locked-in a 3.75% 30 year fixed mortgage! Folks, these are unbelievable low rates.

Freddie Mac predicts that mortgage rates will be closer to 4.7% by this time next year. Now look at the chart above…if you wait that long, you’re purchase power gets cut by over 10%.

So, thinking about moving-up? Need to sell your current home in order to buy your next home? Contact me, and I’ll show you how we can make this a reality.
It’s a simple step-by-step process.

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Take a stroll with us through downtown Livermore

Join us, as we take stroll down First Street in downtown Livermore. Michael Koenig and Maureen Torretto discuss a few reasons why they love Livermore so much.

Did you know the city of Livermore was incorporated 140 years ago on April 1st, 1876? Now you know.

Places mentioned: First Street Ale House, Livermore Chamber of Commerce, The Last Word, Bankhead Theater, Sauced BBQ, Cream, Loard’s Ice Cream, Farmer’s Market, Carnegie Park, Heritage Guild, Livermore Water Fountains, Uncle Yu’s at the Vineyard, Livermore Rodeo (cowboys), Lawrence Livermore Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratory, Livermore Weather

Maureen Torretto, Loan Consultant with iMortgage.
Email: maureen.torretto@imortgage.com
Phone: 925-577-8706

Michael Koenig, Real Estate Broker
Email: SFBayRealtor@gmail.com
Phone: 510-681-3499

 

Check out these hot new Livermore Listings: 

  1. 4 beds, 3 full, 1 half baths
    Home size: 2,905 sq ft
    Lot size: 9,232 sqft
    Year built: 2003
    Parking spots: 4
    Days on market: 0
  2. 2 beds, 2 full, 1 half baths
    Home size: 1,287 sq ft
    Year built: 2006
    Parking spots: 2
    Days on market: 1
  3. 3 beds, 2 full baths
    Home size: 1,413 sq ft
    Lot size: 4,500 sqft
    Year built: 2002
    Parking spots: 2
    Days on market: 1
  4. 3 beds, 2 full baths
    Home size: 1,343 sq ft
    Lot size: 5,750 sqft
    Year built: 1988
    Parking spots: 2
    Days on market: 1
  5. 3 beds, 2 full baths
    Home size: 1,350 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,718 sqft
    Year built: 1956
    Parking spots: 2
    Days on market: 1
  6. 4 beds, 3 full baths
    Home size: 1,635 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,300 sqft
    Year built: 1977
    Parking spots: 2
    Days on market: 1
  7. 1 bed, 1 full bath
    Home size: 838 sq ft
    Lot size: 5,000 sqft
    Year built: 1920
    Days on market: 1
  8. 3 beds, 2 full baths
    Home size: 1,204 sq ft
    Lot size: 6,120 sqft
    Year built: 1963
    Parking spots: 2
    Days on market: 2
  9. 6 beds, 2 full baths
    Home size: 1,485 sq ft
    Lot size: 7,350 sqft
    Year built: 1958
    Parking spots: 2
    Days on market: 2
  10. 4 beds, 4 full, 1 half baths
    Home size: 3,475 sq ft
    Lot size: 9,523 sqft
    Year built: 2002
    Parking spots: 4
    Days on market: 2

See all Real estate in the city of Livermore.
(all data current as of 7/1/2016)

Listing information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Read full disclaimer.

Buying a home? Beware of the latest scam!

Buying a home is exciting. You saved for the down payment, scheduled the move, and are dreaming of planting new roots. Closing is right around the corner… unless a scammer gets your settlement fees first.

The Federal Trade Commission and the National Association of Realtors® are warning home buyers about an email and money wiring scam. Hackers have been breaking into some consumers’ and real estate professionals’ email accounts to get information about upcoming real estate transactions. After figuring out the closing dates, the hacker sends an email to the buyer, posing as the real estate professional or title company. The bogus email says there has been a last minute change to the wiring instructions, and tells the buyer to wire closing costs to a different account. But it’s the scammer’s account. If the buyer takes the bait, their bank account could be cleared out in a matter of minutes. Often, that’s money the buyer will never see again.

If you’re buying a home and get an email with money-wiring instructions, STOP. Email is not a secure way to send financial information, and your real estate professional or title company should know that. If it’s a phishing email, report it to the FTC.

Here are some ideas to help you avoid phishing scams:

  • Don’t email financial information. It’s not secure.
  • If you’re giving your financial information on the web, make sure the site is secure. Look for a URL that begins with https (the “s” stands for secure). And, instead of clicking a link in an email to go to an organization’s site, look up the real URL and type in the web address yourself.
  • Be cautious about opening attachments and downloading files from emails, regardless of who sent them. These files can contain malware that can weaken your computer’s security.
  • Keep your operating system, browser, and security software up to date.

Learn more about protecting yourself from phishing and what to do if your email is hacked. If you gave your information to a scammer, visit IdentityTheft.gov.

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What is Your Home Equity Position?

Michael Koenig and Maureen Torretto discuss how the steady increase in real estate values over the past couple years has affected your home equity position.

Having this knowledge can give you options! Contact me to find out what your equity position is; then you’ll be able to make an educated decision as to your future direction.

Maureen Torretto, Loan Consultant with iMortgage.
Email: maureen.torretto@imortgage.com
Phone: 925-577-8706

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Buying a Home? New Rules You Need to Know!

Michael Koenig and Maureen Torretto discuss some new changes to real estate finance law. These new closing rules take effect October 3, 2015.

TRID is the New TILA RESPA Integrated Disclosures. The Loan Estimate replaces the initial Truth-in-Lending disclosure and Good Faith Estimate.

Maureen Torretto, Loan Consultant with iMortgage.
Email: maureen.torretto@imortgage.com
Phone: 925-577-8706

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Take Advantage of Market Volatility

Schadenfreude. Ever hear of this term? Basically, it means to take satisfaction or pleasure at the expense of someone else’s misfortune.

Well, that’s basically the opportunity now.

The financial markets are in turmoil, thanks to what is happening in Greece and China. The benefit to you? Look at the chart below. Interest rates are plunging again!
(I just took a screenshot from my Zillow Mortgage app this morning, July 8, 2015.)

Interest Rates Plunging again.

 

The overall trend of interest rates are definitely going up. Don’t let this second chance pass you by!

Contact me now to learn how to take advantage of the current market trend.

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It’s the 2015 Peak Home Selling Season!

Michael Koenig and Maureen Torretto discuss the current real estate market. What market dynamic plays a huge part in determining when to sell your home? Find out by watching.

Maureen Torretto, Loan Consultant with iMortgage.
Email: maureen.torretto@imortgage.com
Phone: 925-577-8706

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