Recently there has been a lot of talk about home prices and if they are accelerating too quickly. In some areas of the country, seller supply (homes for sale) cannot keep up with the number of buyers out looking for a home, which has caused prices to rise.
In this day and age of being able to shop for anything anywhere, it is really important to know what you’re looking for when you start your home search.
According to Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey, interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage are currently at 3.47%. Rates have remained at or below 3.5% each of the last 16 weeks, marking a historic low.
The results of countless studies have shown that potential home buyers, and even current homeowners, have an inflated view of what is really required to qualify for a mortgage in today’s market.
Nobody in Central MA can escape the fact that we are now immersed in the full-bore
election year media onslaught. You would need to be living under a rock not to have noticed and the rock would have to be somewhere out of earshot of radio and tv.
Fortunately, since this is a space where we discuss buying and selling homes in Central MA, we try as best we can to steer clear of politics; so let’s enjoy this island of non-partisanship or perhaps that’s impossible, because of the topic, which is too interesting to ignore.
Recently, a study came out of Stanford that answered an interesting question: do higher taxes drive wealthy people out of state? If you ever plan on selling a high-end Central MA home, the answer would be more than theoretical. Whether our own state’s position on the tax rate hierarchy could measurably affect high-end property marketability, that is, if the well-heeled set are beginning to allow changes in state tax tables to determine their home base is very much at issue.
So this investigation (it was sponsored by the U.S. Treasury Department), which focused on millionaires, came up with the statistical answer to the question (as Forbes put it) of “Do High State Taxes Drive Away the Rich?
For any agent running million dollar listings or for any multi-million-dollar property owner considering selling their home in Central MA anytime soon, that’s one fewer factor to have to address. The study found that U.S. millionaires who earn over $1 million annually (certainly not me) are actually one of the groups least likely to relocate to a new
state. It could be because their seven figure incomes are tied to their current locale; or it could be because in the rarified atmosphere mega-incomes provide, marginal tax rates don’t matter (I doubt that high income folks usually have plenty to worry about, and taxes are certainly in there).
Also interesting: the lower your household income, the more likely you are to move. In a mobile society like ours, that seems to make good sense and is somewhat reassuring. People are still chasing opportunity; are still motivated to go where jobs can be found.
So what does this mean for those selling a home in Central MA? Or buying one?
That depends, as it almost always does, on your individual circumstances. What is definite is that if you are thinking of buying or selling a home in Central MA this fall or winter, success starts with a solid, localized market analysis. Call me anytime!…..Realty Ace, LLC
If you’ve been house hunting for the Central MA home you know is out there, the one
that will fit your needs, is situated in a suitable neighborhood, and fits your budget. When you home in on a likely candidate, try not to fall in love with it (at least not right away). House hunting is a nesting exercise: part logic, part emotion. Nothing will change that. Problems can result when emotions take over early on in the process. It’s human nature to rush past what seem to be irksome little details as you near the finish line. If, later, “irksome” turns into “awful,” it can usually be traced to a rush to judgement born of emotion. The most productive attitude is one of patience energized by hopefulness but moderated with cool judgement. When you have faith that you will find what you’ve been house hunting for, persistence comes easily.
One basic house hunting tip has to do with your original checklist. You certainly start out with a list of what your minimum must-haves must be, but if you don’t keep that basic list close at hand, you are apt to fall in love with a place that’s missing one or two vital elements. If your Central MA dream house lacks something you set out thinking of as a necessity, you’ll be much more satisfied in the end if you at least consciously decide early on that the other wonderful features make the sacrifice worth the tradeoff.
The second tip category deals with maintenance and upgrades and décor changes and the like. It’s about the realistic cost you are going to pay for necessary changes to will bring the property into line with your tastes and requirements. Being realistic about the amount of effort and budget that will be required is hard to do when you are already in love with the place but it needs to be done realistically. The bottom line for your new Central MA digs will include changes you know you’ll be making, so estimating those costs is integral to developing a levelheaded negotiating position.
The third house hunting tip is really the most important; the financial factor. If the home you’re falling in love with satisfies this one, go ahead and fall, this isn’t puppy love: it
looks like the real thing! This tip is sort of a romance killer (it’s like a pre-nuptial). After you’re pretty sure the property is what you’ve been looking for, stop and seriously consider what its resale value will be in a few years. Of course you’re not going to sell your dream house anytime soon but one day you may want to do so. Will the property’s construction stand up to Father Time? Does the neighborhood look like it, too, will retain its charm (or even better, improve with the years)? And are the fine points of the house the kind that have wide appeal and not just peculiar to the sellers (and you)?
House hunting can be fun; it can be stressful; it can be (and usually is) both. But it is a terrifically valuable use of your time. The goal is to emerge from the process with the Central MA home that will be a pleasure to come home to for many years to come. All the better when it produces an investment that creates value as those years pass. It’s my job to assist my clients in making the most of every house hunting hour. I hope you’ll call me so we can get started!…..Realty Ace, LLC
In today’s housing market, where supply is very low and demand is very high, home values are increasing rapidly. Many experts are projecting that home values could appreciate by another 5%+ over the next twelve months. One major challenge in such a market is the bank appraisal.
Most Central MA house flipping veterans can look back on their successful projects and
place them in either of two columns. Either they were intended to be quick flip turnarounds where speed was a prime ingredient because of an original tactical decision or they were not.
The quick flips depend on speedy, focused action in three of the four phases a house flipping project entails. In the opening phase lining up the capital; speed is not important. Of course, nothing else will materialize unless financing for the Central MA property is obtainable when needed, but there is no timer ticking away. Once it is likely that funding will be obtainable, that’s when the clock starts.
Phase Two: finding, negotiating, and closing on a suitable property can be a real foot race. A quick flip only materializes after a suitable property has been identified. “Suitable” in this context means a home that can be made attractive in the local market without requiring extensive and time-consuming rehabilitation, cosmetically challenged, but not structurally unsound. If it is already on the market, it’s probable that the present owner’s circumstances make them disinclined to oversee any turnaround work themselves. The need for speed is apparent: since the current asking price has to be low enough to allow sufficient profit upon its resale, other interested parties will be interested once they get wind of the opportunity. This kind of qualified house at a sensible price is certain to find a ready buyer quickly.
During the next fixup phase, speed and agility is equally important without sacrificing the quality of the work and/or materials. The work of repairing and renovating calls for fixing underlying mechanical issues, then making everything cosmetically inviting and immaculately clean. Time really IS money: not just the time a project takes, during which the investment capital can’t be allocated elsewhere but also the house flipper’s time. It’s why many are themselves experienced contractors and why most of the others have a deep contact list of those they can rely upon. When a turnaround effort drags on for month after month during which the project is consuming rather than producing, the bottom line suffers. A quick flip’s success can be measured by its final net profit divided by the number
of weeks it took, purchase to sale.
The end phase of house flipping is the sale which calls for expediency for the same reasons. If all else has proceeded as planned, speed here is likely for one simple reason. If the first three house flipping phases have been professionally executed, that means that a profitable sale can happen with an asking price that’s in tune with or slightly beneath comparable Central MA properties. Nothing assures speedy success more than that!
Quick flips are not the only kind of Central MA house flipping, either. Some properties need a lot more tender and time-consuming care (I know that firsthand!) before they can be profitably returned to market. But for either kind of buying or selling, being able to rely on an experienced Central MA Realtor® is a key asset. Whether your next real estate endeavor is in search of profit or simply a home that’s just right for your family, I hope to be answering your call!…..Realty Ace, LLC