The Votes Are In

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Real estate buyers made their voices heard last month and made a clear choice for…  higher-end properties!

One of the interesting dynamics of our current market is the significantly- increased activity in higher price ranges.

The combination of high equity and low-interest rates is clearly causing people to move up.  They are able to purchase the home that has the features they have always wanted whether it be size, finishes, or location.

The considerable equity growth that has occurred for homeowners over the last 7 years is allowing them to have sizable down payments on their ‘move up’ property plus today’s rates keep their monthly payments lower than expected.

Here are the numbers we researched which demonstrate this trend.

Compared to October of 2019, sales of properties priced over $750,000 last month were up:

  • 176% in Larimer County
  • 375% in Weld County
  • 96% in Metro Denver

Properties in the $550,000 to $750,000 range also saw a large jump:

  • 57% in Larimer County
  • 63% in Weld County
  • 83% in Metro Denver

This is a unique time in history for people to move up and own a home they have always dreamed about.


Posted on November 6, 2020 at 6:39 pm
Tammy Fisher | Posted in Buying a Home, Loveland Real Estate, Loveland Real Estate Agent, Mortgage Rates | Tagged , ,

Brand New Market Report

Housing Market

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The latest quarterly report from our Chief Economist Matthew Gardner is now available.  Here is a quote from the report with his take on the Front Range economy:

What a difference a quarter makes! Following the massive job losses Colorado experienced starting in February—the state shed over 342,000 positions between February and April—the turnaround has been palpable.

Through August, Colorado has recovered 178,000 of the jobs lost due to COVID-19, adding 107,500 jobs over the past three months, an increase of 4.2%.

All regions saw a significant number of jobs returning. The most prominent was in the Denver metropolitan service area (MSA), where 78,800 jobs returned in the quarter.

Although employment in all markets is recovering, there is still a way to go to get back to pre-pandemic employment levels.

The recovery in jobs has naturally led the unemployment rate to drop: the state is now at a respectable 6.7%, down from a peak of 12.2%.

Regionally, all areas continue to see their unemployment rates contract. I would note that the Fort Collins and Boulder MSA unemployment rates are now below 6%.

Cases of COVID-19 continue to rise, which is troubling, but rising rates have only slowed—not stopped—the economic recovery. Moreover, it has had no noticeable impact on the state’s housing market.

To receive a complimentary copy of the latest Gardner Report, simply reach out to us and we will send it to you right away.


Posted on November 1, 2020 at 2:13 pm
Tammy Fisher | Posted in Fort Collins Real Estate, Housing Market, Loveland Real Estate, Loveland Real Estate Agent, Northern Colorado Real Estate | Tagged , ,

10 Steps to Selling Your Home

 

 

Navigating everything involved with selling your home can seem intimidating. Breaking the process down step by step will keep you organized and ready to work with your agent toward a successful home sale.

 

1. Choose an agent

A lot goes into choosing the right agent. If you’re unsure where to start, get referrals from trusted friends, family, and neighbors. Although the ultimate goal is the sale, think about your compatibility outside of the transaction. Their ability to connect with you on a human level through the ups and downs of a home sale is just as important as their expertise and knowledge of the market.
2. Set a timeline 
Depending on your local housing market conditions, your timeline for selling your home may vary. However, a timeline is valuable in that it will keep you organized throughout the selling process and allows you to adjust if circumstances change. Your agent will work with you to build the ideal timeline.
3. What is your home worth? 
The key to selling quickly is correctly pricing your home from the first day it hits the market. In particular, overpricing can lead to serious complications in the selling process. Your agent can provide you with a Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) to better determine the best price of your home. CMAs provide information on comparable home sales in your area, both pending and sold, within the past six months.
While an agent will always have the best information, you can also try our automated value estimate tool as a starting point. Our seller page features home values and market information about what buyers are looking for in your area.
4. Repair & upgrade
Now it’s time to get to work on the house! This is the perfect time to tackle any and all outstanding projects or repairs. Create a list separating which repairs can be done yourself and which need professional attention. This is the time to consider a pre-sale home inspection to identify structural and mechanical problems before your home is on the market.
5. Make the best first impression
Making an impactful first impression goes a long way in the minds of buyers, so roll up your sleeves and prepare to check off that to-do-list. Start by cleaning up the garden and lawn, clearing out gutters, and adding color to your flower beds. Apply a fresh coat of paint anywhere you spot peeling or cracked paint. A great way to make an impact is by staging your home, with the goal of making each room feel as spacious and welcoming as possible.
6. Show your home 
Your local pandemic-era regulations will dictate the ability for agents to conduct in-person showings and open houses. Discuss virtual home tour options with your agent and other ways to generate maximum buyer interest. For in-person showings, it’s best that you leave the premises so the buyer can freely ask their agent questions and visualize the home as their own.
7. Offers & negotiation 
If you are in a seller’s market—defined by low inventory and high buyer competition—it is likely that you will receive offers at – or above – asking price. You can respond to an offer by a) accepting the offer, b) making a counteroffer, or c) rejecting the offer. Counteroffers should always be made in writing and provide a short window of time for the potential buyer to respond. If you are selling in a buyer’s market, you may have to be more open to negotiation. Discuss negotiation strategies with your agent to work toward a satisfying final price.
8. Prepare for closing costs
There are costs throughout the selling process, and as the close date approaches, that remains true. Be sure to budget for your real estate agent’s commission, and other common seller’s costs like title insurance, recording fees, and government transfer tax, among others.
9. Home inspection
Buyer offers are usually contingent upon a professional home inspection. Ask your agent for a home inspection checklist, so you know what the inspector is looking for ahead of time. They typically inspect the home’s foundation, structure, roof, plumbing and electrical systems, floors, windows, doors, and more for signs of damage and weathering.
10. Closing time
Congratulations! Your home is sold, but there are still some final steps before the deal is done. This is the time to ask the buyer to release any contingencies, sign the title, and close escrow before handing over the keys. Consult your real estate agent for any questions about legal documentation and settlement costs.
If you’d like more information about selling your home, an experienced Windermere Real Estate agent is ready to help.

Posted on November 1, 2020 at 6:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Posted in closing costs, Loveland Real Estate Agent, Real Estate Agent, Selling Your Home | Tagged , ,

The Remote Worker’s Home Buying Process

The pandemic’s influences on home life are far-ranging, prompting buyers to look at home ownership through a new lens. Remote work has created a paradigm shift in the wants and needs of homebuyers. Here’s what the remote worker should keep in mind when looking to buy.

Location

The location, location, location cliché has taken on new meaning for homebuyers who work from home. Because remote work gives us the opportunity to work from anywhere, home searches are expanding. Work commute times typically play a significant role in the home buying process; however, many buyers now have the option to view homes further away from their places of work.

 

Those who previously dreamed of the quiet life, but didn’t want the commute that came with it, are now able to make a move toward a more suburban environment. If you prefer to be away from the hustle and bustle of a downtown area but don’t want to feel isolated, search for properties in the suburbs with active town centers.

The proper space

When COVID-19 began sending workers home in the early months of 2020, homeowners worldwide discovered their varied level of preparedness for remote work. Some had spacious home offices and were able to make the transition easily. Others had to create makeshift workspaces out of living rooms or bedrooms. What we have learned is that a dedicated workspace is paramount to productive remote work, its importance emphasized by the unknown timeline of a return to working in-person in many parts of the country.

Before you buy: 
  • When searching for homes, understand that a home office situated in an open floor plan is more prone to distraction.
  • Look for features such as an additional bedroom, finished basement, or bonus room that offer ample space to create your remote work environment.
  • Having a designated space you can associate solely with work will not only drive your focus but helps to balance your home and work life. It allows you to wrap up the workday, leave your home office, and easily transition back into the goings on of your household.

 

After you buy: 
  • Light it up: You’ll want plenty of light in your home office to stay fresh throughout the work week. If you are next to a window, let in as much natural light as possible. Add in desk and floor lamps to brighten your space.
  • Work comfortably: While working at home, it’s easy to sit in one place for hours on end. Shop for comfortable desk chairs that provide proper lumbar support. Explore alternatives to desk chairs like yoga balls and standing desks.
  • Personalize: Adding personal touches will help to make your home office feel comfortable. Inspirational quotes, your favorite artwork, and pictures of loved ones are all types of décor that will keep you inspired in your remote work.

 

For all these considerations and more, talk with your Windermere agent about how your remote work is shifting where you’re looking for a home and what you’re looking for when it’s time to move there.


Posted on October 29, 2020 at 6:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Posted in Buying a Home, Loveland Real Estate, Loveland Real Estate Agent, Northern Colorado Real Estate | Tagged , , ,

Forebearance Falls

The number of loans in forbearance just fell to their lowest level since mid-April.

 

This is good news for the real estate market.

 

Less and less people are seeking payment relief on their mortgages.

 

The number of loans currently in forbearance stands at 7.16%.

 

This news coincides with the U.S. Unemployment Rate falling to it’s lowest level in 5 months as more people are getting their jobs back.

 

The economy has added back roughly half of the 22.2 million jobs that were lost in March and April of this year.

waterfall


Posted on September 12, 2020 at 6:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Posted in Housing Market, Loveland Real Estate, Loveland Real Estate Agent, Real Estate Market | Tagged , , ,

The Top Reasons People Are Moving This Year

The Top Reasons People Are Moving This Year

Today, Americans are moving for a variety of different reasons. The current health crisis has truly re-shaped our lifestyles and our needs. Spending extra time where we currently live is enabling many families to re-evaluate what homeownership means and what they find most important in a home.

According to Zillow:

“In 2020, homes went from the place people returned to after work, school, hitting the gym or vacationing, to the place where families do all of the above. For those who now spend the majority of their hours at home, there’s a growing wish list of what they’d change about their homes, if possible.” 

With a new perspective on homeownership, here are some of the top reasons people are reconsidering where they live and making moves this year.

1. Working from Home

Remote work is becoming the new norm in 2020, and it’s continuing on longer than most initially expected. Many in the workforce today are discovering they don’t need to live close to the office anymore, and they can get more for their money if they move a little further outside the city limits. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors (NAR) notes:

“With the sizable shift in remote work, current homeowners are looking for larger homes and this will lead to a secondary level of demand even into 2021.”

If you’ve tried to convert your guest room or your dining room into a home office with minimal success, it may be time to find a larger home. The reality is, your current house may not be optimally designed for this kind of space, making remote work and continued productivity very challenging.

2. Virtual Schooling

With school about to restart this fall, many districts are beginning the new academic year online. Education Week is tracking the reopening plans of schools across the country, and as of August 21, 21 of the 25 largest school districts are choosing remote learning as their back-to-school instructional model, affecting over 4.5 million students.

With a need for a dedicated learning space, it may be time to find a larger home to provide your children with the same kind of quiet room to focus on their schoolwork, just like you likely need for your office work.

3. A Home Gym

Staying healthy and active is a top priority for many Americans. With various levels of concern around the safety of returning to health clubs across the country, dreams of space for a home gym are growing stronger. The Home Builders Association of Greater New Orleans explains:

“For many in quarantine, a significant decrease in activity is more than a vanity issue – it’s a mental health issue.”

Having room to maintain a healthy lifestyle at home – mentally and physically – may prompt you to consider a new place to live that includes space for at-home workouts.

4. Outdoor Space

Especially for those living in an apartment or a small townhouse, this is a new priority for many as well. Zillow also notes the benefits of being able to use yard space throughout the year:

“People want more space in their next home, and one way to get it is by turning part of the backyard into a functional room, ‘an outdoor space for play as well as entertaining or cooking.’”

You may, however, not have the extra square footage today to have these designated areas – indoor or out.

Moving May Be Your Best Option

If you’re clamoring for extra space to accommodate your family’s changing needs, making a move may be your best bet, especially while you can take advantage of today’s low mortgage rates. Low rates are making homes more affordable than they have been in years. According to Black Knight:

“Buying power for those shopping for a home is up 10% year over year, with home buyers able to afford nearly $32,000 more home than they could have 1 year ago while keeping their monthly payment the same.”

It’s a great time to get more home for your money, just when you need the extra space.

Bottom Line

People are moving for a variety of different reasons today, and many families’ needs have changed throughout the year. If you’ve been trying to decide if now is the time to buy a new home, reach out to a local real estate professional to discuss your needs.

https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2020/08/24/the-top-reasons-people-are-moving-this-year/


Posted on September 5, 2020 at 6:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Posted in Homeownership, Loveland Real Estate, Loveland Real Estate Agent, Real Estate Market | Tagged , , , , ,

A Snapshot of the Larimer County Market


Posted on August 26, 2020 at 3:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Posted in Housing Market, Larimer County Real Estate, Loveland Real Estate, Loveland Real Estate Agent | Tagged , ,

A Real Estate Pro Is More Helpful Now Than Ever

A Real Estate Pro Is More Helpful Now than Ever | Keeping Current Matters

Some Highlights

  • A recent study shared by NAR notes that both buyers and sellers think an agent is more helpful than ever during the current health crisis.
  • Expertise and professionalism are highly valued and can save buyers and sellers time and effort along the way.
  • If you’re thinking of buying or selling a home this year, be sure you have a trusted professional on your side.

https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2020/07/24/a-real-estate-pro-is-more-helpful-now-than-ever-infographic/


Posted on August 12, 2020 at 6:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Posted in Buying a Home, Grateful Realtor, Loveland Real Estate Agent, Real Estate Agent, Selling Your Home | Tagged , ,

Buyers: Are You Ready for a Bidding War?

Buyers: Are You Ready for a Bidding War?

With businesses reopening throughout the country and some experts indicating early signs of a much-anticipated economic recovery, more homebuyers are actively entering the housing market this summer. Today, housing is truly driving the U.S. economy forward. With so many buyers looking for homes to purchase and so few houses for sale right now, there’s a disconnect between supply and demand. This imbalance is pushing home prices upward while driving more bidding wars and multiple-offer scenarios. Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.com explains:

“People are surprised that prices are rising, not falling, because in the last recession home prices fell, the difference this time is the severe shortage of homes for sale…We are seeing bigger price increases with [a limited] number of homes…That is likely to lead to more competition and potentially multiple offers and bidding wars.”

According to the recent Realtors Confidence Index (RCI) survey conducted by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), this trend is growing:

“On average, there were about three offers on a home that closed in May, up from just about two in April 2020 and in May 2019 (2.3 offers).”

HousingWire also indicates:

“42% of homeowners who made a purchase during the January to May time period ended up in a bidding war, demonstrating the strong demand for homes amid low inventory.”

With more people returning to work we’ll continue to see the number of interested buyers increase. So, if you’re among the many people looking for a home to buy this summer, it’s important to ensure you have the right guidance from the start. This way, you make sure your offer stands out from the crowd when it really counts. Here are two tips to follow.

1. Hire a Trusted Local Expert

A trusted local real estate professional matters more than ever right now, as noted in a recent survey shared by NAR. In fact, according to respondents, 54% of buyers and 62% of sellers indicated that “Particularly during the pandemic, a real estate agent’s guidance is especially valued.”

We’re not in a normal market. We are in one of the greatest health crises our nation has ever seen. The pandemic has had a dramatic impact on the journey consumers must take to purchase a home. To successfully navigate the landscape today, you need a true expert on your side.

2. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

When there are more buyers than sellers on the market, the process to find a home becomes much more challenging. One way to show you’re serious about buying a home is to work with a lender to get pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search. With a pre-approval letter, sellers will see your true desire to buy this year, potentially helping your offer rise to the top.

Bottom Line

If this is the year you’re ready to buy, contact a local real estate professional to get the process started so you can make sure your offer is a strong one when the competition heats up.

https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2020/07/13/buyers-are-you-ready-for-a-bidding-war/


Posted on July 29, 2020 at 6:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Posted in Buying a Home, Home Buyers, Loveland Real Estate Agent, Real Estate Agent | Tagged , , ,

America Is Another Name for Opportunity

America Is Another Name for Opportunity [INFOGRAPHIC] | Keeping Current Matters


Posted on July 24, 2020 at 6:00 am
Tammy Fisher | Posted in Grateful Realtor, Loveland Real Estate Agent | Tagged ,