Don’t Sell on Your Own Just Because It’s a Sellers’ Market

Don’t Sell on Your Own Just Because It’s a Sellers’ Market | MyKCM
In a sellers’ market, some homeowners might be tempted to try to sell their house on their own (known as For Sale By Owner, or FSBO) instead of working with a trusted real estate professional. When the inventory of homes for sale is as low as it is today, buyers are eager to snatch up virtually any house that comes to market. This makes it even more tempting to FSBO. As a result, some sellers think selling their house will be a breeze and see today’s market as an opportunity to FSBO. Let’s unpack why that’s a big mistake and may actually cost you more in the long run.

According to the Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers published by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), 41% of homeowners who tried to sell their house as a FSBO did so to avoid paying a commission or fee. In reality, even in a sellers’ market, selling on your own likely means you’ll net a lower profit than when you sell with the help of an agent.

The NAR report explains:

FSBOs typically sell for less than the selling price of other homes; FSBO homes sold at a median of $217,900 in 2020 (up from $200,000 in 2019), and still far lower than the median selling price of all homes at $242,300. Agent-assisted homes sold for a median of $295,000…Sellers who began as a FSBO, then ended up working with an agent, received 98 percent of the asking price, but had to reduce their price the most before arriving at a final listing price.”

When the seller knew the buyer, that amount was even lower, coming in at $176,700 (See graph below):Don’t Sell on Your Own Just Because It’s a Sellers’ Market | MyKCMThat’s a lot of money to risk losing when you FSBO – far more than what you’d save on commission or other fees. Despite the advantages sellers have in today’s market, it’s still crucial to have the support of an expert to guide you through the process. Real estate professionals are trained negotiators with a ton of housing market insights that average homeowners may never have. An agent’s expertise can alleviate much of the stress of selling your house and help you close the best possible deal when you do.

Bottom Line

If you’re ready to sell your house this year and you’re considering doing so on your own, be sure to think through that decision carefully. Odds are, you stand to gain the most by working with a knowledgeable and experienced real estate agent. Let’s connect to discuss how a trusted advisor can help you, especially in today’s market.

Jim Armstrong
Broker -Armstrong Field Real Estate

Homeownership Is Full of Financial Benefits

Homeownership Is Full of Financial Benefits | MyKCM

Fannie Mae survey recently revealed some of the most highly-rated benefits of homeownership, which continue to be key drivers in today’s power-packed housing market. Here are the top four financial benefits of owning a home according to consumer respondents:

  • 88% – a better chance of saving for retirement
  • 87% – the best investment plan
  • 85% – the chance to be better off financially
  • 85% – the chance to build up wealth

Additional financial advantages of homeownership included in the survey are having the best overall tax situation and being able to live within your budget.

Does homeownership actually give you a better chance to build wealth?

No one can question a person’s unique feelings about the importance of homeownership. However, it’s fair to ask if the numbers justify homeownership as a financial asset.

Last fall, the Federal Reserve released the Survey of Consumer Finances, a report done every three years, with the latest edition covering through 2019. Their findings confirmed that homeownership is a clear financial benefit. The survey found that homeowners have forty times higher net worth than renters ($255,000 for homeowners compared to $6,300 for renters).

The difference in net worth between homeowners and renters has continued to grow. Here’s a graph showing the results of the last four Fed surveys:Homeownership Is Full of Financial Benefits | MyKCMThe above graph only includes data through 2019, but according to CoreLogic, the equity held by homeowners grew by $26,300 over the last twelve months alone. That means the gap between the net worth of homeowners and renters has probably widened even further over the last year.

Some might argue the difference in net worth may be due to homeowners normally having larger incomes than renters and therefore the ability to save more money. However, a study by First American shows homeowners have greater net worth than renters regardless of their income level. Here are the findings:Homeownership Is Full of Financial Benefits | MyKCMOthers may think homeowners are older and that’s why they have a greater net worth. However, a Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University report on homeowners and renters over the age of 65 reveals:

“The ability to build equity puts homeowners far ahead of renters in terms of household wealth…the median owner age 65 and over had home equity of $143,500 and net wealth of $319,200. By comparison, the net wealth of the same-age renter was just $6,700.”

Homeowners 65 and older have 47.6 times greater net worth than renters.

Find out how much your Massachusetts home is worth

Bottom Line

The idea of homeownership as a direct way to build your net worth has met the test of time. Let’s connect if you’re ready to take steps toward becoming a homeowner.

Jim Armstrong
Broker – Armstrong Field Real Estate

Search for North Shore homes now

Rising Home Equity Can Power Your Next Move [INFOGRAPHIC]

Rising Home Equity Can Power Your Next Move [INFOGRAPHIC] | MyKCM
Some Highlights

  • Massachusetts’ homeowners have experienced an average gain of $14,000 in equity.
  • According to CoreLogic, homeowners across the country are gaining significant equity.
  • Over the past year, the average homeowner gained $9,800 in equity, growing their overall net worth.
  • If you’re ready to sell your house and begin looking for your dream home, let’s connect to plan how your equity can make that possible.

Red Velvet Pancakes with Blueberries and Maple Cream

Home is where the heart is, and in many homes the heart of the house is the kitchen. So this post is about cooking a truly American breakfast for your family. Who wouldn’t want to wake up to these delicious patriotic pancakes on July 4th? Red Velvet Pancakes with Blueberries and Maple Cream. 
https://americanlifestylemag.com/food-recipes/breakfast/red-velvet-pancakes-blueberries-maple-cream/

Jim Armstrong
Realtor / Chief cook and bottle washer

Is Now the Time to Refinance Your Mortgage?

Is it time to refinance

There are a large number of Americans struggling right now because of the effects of COVID-19. There’s no question the economy has taken a hit and, in turn, a lot of families have had to pay the price financially as well.

However, if you own a home, one of the options to help reduce your monthly payments and save money is to refinance your home loan, and with this changing market, refinancing is certainly something to consider. This process won’t be for everyone, but it’s a good first step to take if you’re looking to save a little bit of money—especially right now.

Read the rest of the article at:
https://americanlifestylemag.com/real-estate/buying-selling/is-now-the-time-to-refinance-your-mortgage/?ts=1592602428605&cb=MTc4NTEwNw==&utm_source=cam

Want to Make a Move? Homeowner Equity is Growing Year-Over-Year

Want to Make a Move? Homeowner Equity is Growing Year-Over-Year | MyKCM

One of the bright spots of the 2020 real estate market is the growth in equity homeowners are experiencing across the country. According to the recently released Homeowner Equity Insights Report from CoreLogic, in nearly every state there was a year-over-year first-quarter equity increase, averaging out to a 6.5% overall gain.

The report notes:

“CoreLogic analysis shows U.S. homeowners with mortgages (roughly 63% of all properties) have seen their equity increase by a total of nearly $590 billion since the first quarter of 2019, an increase of 6.5%, year over year.” (See map below):

Want to Make a Move? Homeowner Equity is Growing Year-Over-Year | MyKCMThis means that In the first quarter of 2020, the average homeowner gained approximately $9,600 in equity during the past year.”

That’s a huge win for homeowners, especially for those looking to sell their houses and make a move this summer. Having equity to re-invest in your next home is a major force that can make moving a reality, especially while buyers are expressing such a high demand for homes to purchase.

Frank Martell, President and CEO of CoreLogic addresses the potential long-term outlook and how homeowners will likely fare much more positively through the current recession than many did during the last one:

“Many homeowners will experience a recession during their lifetime, and it is reasonable to compare the current recession to those in the past. But the comparison is not apples to apples — every recession is different. Primary drivers of the Great Recession were an overbuilt housing stock, risky mortgages and the collapse of home prices, creating a massive increase in negative equity that proved difficult to recover from. Today’s housing environment has low vacancy and delinquency rates and a large home equity cushion.”

Bottom Line

Now is a great time to consider leveraging your equity and making a move, especially while buyer interest is high. Let’s connect to explore your equity position and make your next move a reality.

Jim Armstrong – Broker/REALTOR
Armstrong Field Real Estate
978-394-6736
jarmstrong@armstrongfield.com

How is COVID-19 affecting the real estate market?

What Impact Might COVID-19 Have on Home Values?

What Impact Might COVID-19 Have on Home Values? | MyKCM

A big challenge facing the housing industry is determining what impact the current pandemic may have on home values. Some buyers are hoping for major price reductions because the health crisis is straining the economy.

The price of any item, however, is determined by supply and demand, which is how many items are available in relation to how many consumers want to buy that item.

In residential real estate, the measurement used to decipher that ratio is called months supply of inventory. A normal market would have 6-7 months of inventory. Anything over seven months would be considered a buyers’ market, with downward pressure on prices. Anything under six months would indicate a sellers’ market, which would put upward pressure on prices.

Going into March of this year, the supply stood at three months – a strong seller’s market. While buyer demand has decreased rather dramatically during the pandemic, the number of homes on the market has also decreased. The recently released Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) revealed we currently have 3.4 months of inventory. This means homes should maintain their value during the pandemic.

This information is consistent with the research completed by John Burns Real Estate Consulting, which recently reported:

“Historical analysis showed us that pandemics are usually V-shaped (sharp recessions that recover quickly enough to provide little damage to home prices).”

What are the experts saying?

Here’s a look at what some experts recently reported on the matter:

Ivy Zelman, President, Zelman & Associates

“Supported by our analysis of home price dynamics through cycles and other periods of economic and housing disruption, we expect home price appreciation to decelerate from current levels in 2020, though easily remain in positive territory year over year given the beneficial factors of record-low inventories & a historically-low interest rate environment.”

Freddie Mac

“The fiscal stimulus provided by the CARES Act will mute the impact that the economic shock has on house prices. Additionally, forbearance and foreclosure mitigation programs will limit the fire sale contagion effect on house prices. We forecast house prices to fall 0.5 percentage points over the next four quarters. Two forces prevent a collapse in house prices. First, as we indicated in our earlier research report, U.S. housing markets face a large supply deficit. Second, population growth and pent up household formations provide a tailwind to housing demand. Price growth accelerates back towards a long-run trend of between 2 and 3% per year.”

Mark Fleming, Chief Economist, First American

“The housing supply remains at historically low levels, so house price growth is likely to slow, but it’s unlikely to go negative.”

Bottom Line

Even though the economy has been placed on pause, it appears home prices will remain steady throughout the pandemic.

How To Keep Your Home Spotless On A Budget When You’re A Dog Owner

Cleaning House: How To Keep Things Spotless On A Budget When You’re A Dog Owner 

Dirty Dog - Dirty Home

Photo via Pixabay by Pexels

Cleaning your home can be a challenge no matter what you have going on; you may have a busy schedule, a large family that leaves messes behind, a tight budget, or a big house that requires more time than you have to give. When you’re a pet owner, it can be even more difficult to keep things tidy. Even the most well-behaved dog can leave behind hair, dander, dirt, and saliva as he moves through the house, making your job that much harder. The good news is it doesn’t have to be a struggle to keep your home in great shape. By making a few small lifestyle changes, you can ensure that each room of your house will stay clean season after season without breaking the bank.

Some things to think about include pet grooming, lawn maintenance, and planning ahead when your dog goes outside for a walk or for an extended period of time when the weather is bad. It’s also a good idea to invest in a vacuum cleaner that includes a HEPA filter so you can keep pet hair and dander from being thrown back into the air when you clean the floors. You don’t have to spend a fortune on this essential tool; you can often find top-rated models on sale on sites like Amazon, so keep an eye on their daily Gold Box Deals.

Here are a few more things to consider when it comes to cleaning your home on a budget when you have a pet.

Get the cleaning supplies you need

Even house-trained pets can sometimes have accidents or make messes, and when this happens and you aren’t prepared with the right cleaning supplies, your home can suffer. Shop for these supplies at an already-affordable store like Target; be sure to watch out for sales and use Target in-store coupons to get the best deal on everything you need to keep your floors and furniture spotless. Having these on hand will allow you to take care of messes right away, which could mean the difference between a soiled carpet and one that just needs a bit of care.

Keep him groomed

Good grooming is essential for your pet for many reasons, one of them being that it will help you keep your home free of excess hair and damage. Well-trimmed toenails and short hair can go a long way toward making sure your floors and furniture stay in great shape, and this is often something you can do yourself. If you aren’t comfortable with cutting his nails on your own, the local pet store or your vet will do the job without breaking the bank.

Maintain your lawn

When your lawn is in good shape, it can help your pet’s feet and fur stay dry and clean. Keeping the grass cut in spring and summer, picking up waste every day, and making sure there are no muddy areas for him to roll around in will ensure that he doesn’t track in a mess on your clean floors. You can also lay out a thick-pile doormat for him to wipe his feet on (Overstock.com has lots of lovely but inexpensive options, and they offer a special discount to new customers), or keep pet wipes or a bowl of clean water by the door to give him a little foot bath before he comes in. This can be especially helpful during the rainy season.

Do a little each day

Cleaning your home can be overwhelming if you wait to do it all at once on the same day; that’s why it can be helpful to do a little bit each day. You might give everyone in the family their own section of the house to be responsible for, or write out a list of things to be done for every day of the week on a cleaning schedule. This will help break it up and make it more manageable when you don’t have a lot of time or energy to devote to cleaning.

Keeping your house clean when you have pets doesn’t have to be a stressful, costly event. With some simple changes and a little planning ahead, you can ensure that your home is spotless every day of the week, no matter how many pets you have–or what your budget is.