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Three Reasons Why This Is Not A Housing Crises

Three Reasons Why This Is Not a Housing Crisis | MyKCM

This IS a challenging time!  However, in times of uncertainty, one of the best things we can do to ease our fears is to educate ourselves with research, facts, and data. Digging into past experiences by reviewing historical trends and understanding the peaks and valleys of what’s come before us is one of the many ways we can confidently evaluate any situation. With concerns of a global recession on everyone’s minds today, it’s important to take an objective look at what has transpired over the years and how the housing market has successfully weathered these storms.

1. The Market Today Is Vastly Different from 2008

We all remember 2008. This is not 2008. Today’s market conditions are far from the time when housing was a key factor that triggered a recession. From easy-to-access mortgages to skyrocketing home price appreciation, a surplus of inventory, excessive equity-tapping, and more – we’re not where we were 12 years ago. None of those factors are in play today. Rest assured, housing is not a catalyst that could spiral us back to that time or place.

According to Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at Realtor.com, if there is a recession:

“It will be different than the Great Recession. Things unraveled pretty quickly, and then the recovery was pretty slow. I would expect this to be milder. There’s no dysfunction in the banking system, we don’t have many households who are overleveraged with their mortgage payments and are potentially in trouble.”

In addition, the Goldman Sachs GDP Forecast released this week indicates that although there is no growth anticipated immediately, gains are forecasted heading into the second half of this year and getting even stronger in early 2021.Three Reasons Why This Is Not a Housing Crisis | MyKCMBoth of these expert sources indicate this is a momentary event in time, not a collapse of the financial industry. It is a drop that will rebound quickly, a stark difference to the crash of 2008 that failed to get back to a sense of normal for almost four years. Although it poses plenty of near-term financial challenges, a potential recession this year is not a repeat of the long-term housing market crash we remember all too well.

2. A Recession Does Not Equal a Housing Crisis

Next, take a look at the past five recessions in U.S. history. Home values actually appreciated in three of them. It is true that they sank by almost 20% during the last recession, but as we’ve identified above, 2008 presented different circumstances. In the four previous recessions, home values depreciated only once (by less than 2%). In the other three, residential real estate values increased by 3.5%, 6.1%, and 6.6% (see below):Three Reasons Why This Is Not a Housing Crisis | MyKCM

3. We Can Be Confident About What We Know

Concerns about the global impact COVID-19 will have on the economy are real. And they’re scary, as the health and wellness of our friends, families, and loved ones are high on everyone’s emotional radar.

According to Bloomberg,

“Several economists made clear that the extent of the economic wreckage will depend on factors such as how long the virus lasts, whether governments will loosen fiscal policy enough and can markets avoid freezing up.”

That said, we can be confident that, while we don’t know the exact impact the virus will have on the housing market, we do know that housing isn’t the driver.

The reasons we move – marriage, children, job changes, retirement, etc. – are steadfast parts of life. As noted in a recent piece in the New York Times, “Everyone needs someplace to live.” That won’t change.

Bottom Line

Yes, concerns about a recession are real, but housing isn’t the driver. If you have questions about what it means for your family’s home buying or selling plans, let’s connect to discuss your needs. I am ready to help AND if you just need to talk, give me a call.  (404.219.1938)

Anit Wheeler Signature

425 E. Crossville Road, Suite 213  Roswell, Georgia 30075  Cell:404.219.1938  E-mail: AtlantaTopRealtor@gmail.com  Website: AnitaWheelerRealtor.com

TOP 5 Home Design Trends for a New Decade

Top 5 Home Design Trends for a New Decade

Here’s the truth…whether you’re planning a simple refresh or a full-scale renovation, it’s important to stay up-to-date on the latest trends in home design. Sellers who update their homes to follow recent trends make can absolutely generate increased buyer interest and, in many cases, a premium selling price. And Buyers should consider which features of a home will need updating immediately (or in the near future) so they can factor renovation costs into their overall budget.

Even if you have no immediate plans to buy or sell, you will want to know what is happening in the world of choosing options when redecorating your home. Choosing over-personalized or unpopular options could hurt a home’s value when it does come time to list your property. And selecting out-of-style or overly-trendy elements could cause your home to feel dated quickly.

To help you keep updated and “on it” we’ve rounded up five of the “hottest” home design trends for 2020. Keep in mind, not all of these will work well in every house. If you plan to buy, list, or renovate your property, give me a call. We can discuss how keeping your home updated will make a HUGE difference in getting it sold and to know exactly what Buyers are looking for in your market.

Photo by Rethink Design StudioBrowse living room ideas   

#1  IN: Sustainability / OUT: Fast Furniture

Consumers have become increasingly eco-conscious. Many are shunning the mass-produced, “fast furniture” popularized by retailers like IKEA, opting instead for higher-quality pieces that are built to last. And the availability of non-toxic, environmentally-friendly furniture and decor options is set to grow in 2020 and beyond.

At the same time, there’s been a noticeable shift toward individuality in today’s interior design. Instead of following the latest fad, more homeowners are opting to embrace their personal style and invest in items they believe will “spark joy” (à la Marie Kondo) for years to come.

Want to know more about Marie Kondo’s famous organization method and how it can increase your home’s value? Contact us for a free copy of our recent report, “Top 6 Home Organization Upgrades That ‘Spark Joy’ for Buyers.”

To incorporate this trend, designers recommend layering old and new pieces for a curated look that you can build over time. Instead of purchasing a matching furniture set from a big-box retailer, buy one or two sustainably-sourced pieces that complement what you already own. Try searching estate sales and Craigslist for vintage classics or well-built furniture that can be refinished. And to accessorize your room, mix sentimental items with newer finds to create a truly personalized space.

 

#2  IN: Cozy / OUT: Cold

Designers are moving away from cool grays, industrial finishes, and stark modernism. In 2020, there’s a big emphasis on creating warm and cozy spaces through color, texture, and shape.

Gray has dominated the color palette for the past decade. This year, expect to see a move toward warmer neutrals, earth tones, and nature-inspired shades of blue and green. Warm metals, like gold and brass, will also continue to trend. And hardwood floors are heating up, as cool gray and whitewashed finishes fade in popularity. Expect to see a rise in classic choices like walnut, mahogany, and oak in richer and darker tones.

Furniture will also get cozier—and curvier—in 2020. From rounded sofas and curved-back chairs to oval dining tables, softened-angles are dominating the furniture scene right now. And designers expect softly-textured fabrics—like velvet, shearling, and mohair—to be big this year, as homeowners strive to add a touch of “hygge” (the Danish concept of calming comfort).

Want to warm up your home decor? Try one of the top paint colors for 2020: Benjamin Moore’s First Light (soft pink), Sherwin Williams’s Naval (rich blue), or Behr’s Back to Nature (light green).

 

Photo by Halo Interior DesignSearch powder room design ideas

#3  IN: Bold / OUT: Boring

Bold is back! After years of neutral overload, vivid colors and prints will take center stage in 2020. Expect to see geometric designs, color blocking, and floral and botanical patterns on everything from pillows to rugs to wallpaper.

The hottest trend in interior paint right now is bold trim and ceilings. Monochromatic rooms (e.g., walls, ceilings, and millwork painted the same color) will be big this year, as well as high-contrast pairings, like white walls with black trim. Color is coming back to kitchens, too, and two-toned color schemes continue to gain steam. In 2019, 40% of remodelers chose a contrasting color for their kitchen island.1 While white was still the top choice for cabinets, blue and gray are increasingly popular alternatives.

If you’re ready to “go bold,” separated spaces like laundry and powder rooms are great places to start. It’s easier to incorporate busy wallpaper or a bright wall color in an enclosed area because it doesn’t have to flow with the rest of your decor.

Of course, clients always want to know how design choices could impact their home’s value. The reality is, neutral finishes are still the safest bet for resale. If you’re prepping your home to go on the market, stick with non-permanent fixtures—like artwork and accessories—to brighten your space.

 

 

Photo by CplusC Architectural WorkshopDiscover staircase design ideas

#4  IN: Nature / OUT: Industrial

Biophilic design has been big the past few seasons, and it isn’t going anywhere in 2020. It centers around the health and wellness benefits of connecting with nature, even while indoors, and it’s impacted the latest trends in color, prints, and materials.

As mentioned previously, floral and botanical patterns are hot right now, along with nature-inspired hues, like blues, greens, and earth tones. I have also seeing a heightened use of organic shapes and sustainable materials in furniture and furnishings, including wood, wicker, rattan, and jute. This infusion of nature coincides with a decline in the popularity of urban-industrial fixtures. Designers predict that concrete floors and Edison light bulbs are on the way out.

Want to bring in elements of biophilic design on a budget? Houseplants are a great place to start. REALLY!  You may want to  enhance your home’s natural light and create a visual sightline to the outdoors by removing heavy curtains and blinds. (OLD curtains need to go!)  And when the weather is nice, open your windows and enjoy the breeze, sounds, and smells of nature. It’s not only good for your home, but for you too.

 

Photo by WickesBrowse kitchen photos

#5  IN: Functional / OUT: Fussy

In 2020, homeowners want design that’s beautiful, but also liveable. With the rise in remote workplaces, online shopping, and virtual exercise classes, many of us are spending more time at home than ever before.  Real life—and rising housing prices—necessitates creative use of limited space.

Durable, low-maintenance materials will also surge in popularity this year. Engineered quartz—which is more stain, heat, and chip-resistant than natural stone—is now the #1 choice for kitchen countertops.1 Waterproof, wood-look luxury vinyl is the fastest-growing segment in the flooring industry.3 And improvements to water and stain-resistant performance fabric has made it a mainstream option for both indoor and outdoor upholstery.

Now that functional is hot, what’s not? Designers say that mirrored furniture, open shelving, and all-white kitchens are too impractical for today’s busy families. I still love white and you may too…so go with your life-style and preference.

How can you start enjoying the time and energy-saving benefits of the new design trends? Begin by structuring each room so that it best suits your needs. And when purchasing furniture or fixtures, choose options that are durable and easy-to-clean. The truth is, design fads come and go. But a comfortable and relaxed home (that you don’t spend every spare minute maintaining!) can help create memories to last a lifetime which go to the top of the list!

“DESIGNED TO SELL”

Are you contemplating a remodel? Want to find out how upgrades could impact the value of your home? Buyer preferences vary greatly by neighborhood and price range. I am happy to share my insights and offer tips on how to maximize the return on your investment. And if you’re in the market to sell, I can run a Comparative Market Analysis on your home to find out how it compares to others in the area. Contact me to schedule a free consultation (404.219.1938).

Anit Wheeler Signature

Office:425 E Crossville Rd. #213  Roswell, Ga 30075  Cell:  404.219.1938  E-mail:  AtlantaTopRealtor@gmail.com

2020 Outlook: REAL ESTATE MARKET FORECAST

 

We’re in the midst of the longest economic expansion in U.S. history, and economists think there’s still room to grow. A recent survey by the National Association for Business Economics found that experts believe the U.S. economy will remain positive throughout 2020.1

Still, given that recessions are a natural (and necessary) part of a business cycle, we know this period of growth will inevitably end. So you may be wondering … how will an eventual recession impact the real estate market?

Many Americans assume a recession would lead to a decline in housing prices like we saw during the Great Recession of 2008. But the real estate market crash we experienced wasn’t typical. In fact, the last recession wasn’t typical at all. It was the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

ATTOM Data Solutions analyzed real estate prices during the last five recessions and found that, in the majority of cases, home prices actually went up. Only twice (in 1990 and 2008) did prices decline, and in 1990 it was by less than one percent.2

So what can historical precedent—combined with today’s data—tell us about the future of real estate? Here’s where experts predict the housing market is headed in 2020 and beyond.

 

 HOME PRICES WILL KEEP RISING

Economists predict U.S. housing prices will continue to rise, regardless of a recession. In fact, property data firm CoreLogic forecasts a faster rate of growth for home prices in 2020 than we saw in 2019, with the biggest gains at the lower end of the market.3

Arch MI Chief Economist Ralph DeFranco expects entry-level home prices to increase faster than incomes this year, making it even more difficult for many first-time buyers to afford to enter the market.4

“Low-interest rates and a shortage of starter homes will continue to push up prices,” predicts DeFranco. “This is especially the case for lower price points since builders have tended to focus on more expensive, higher-profit houses and less on replenishing low inventories of entry-level homes.”4

“Real estate is on firm ground with little chance of price declines,” said the National Association of Realtors Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “However, in order for the market to be healthier, more supply is needed to assure home prices, as well as rents, do not consistently outgrow income gains.”5

What does it mean for you? If you have the ability and desire to buy a home now, don’t let a fear of recession or falling prices hold you in limbo. Economists expect home values, as well as rent prices, to continue rising. So you’ll likely pay more the longer you wait.

 

 INVENTORY CONSTRAINTS WILL CONTINUE

According to Redfin, Americans are staying in their homes longer. In 2019, the average homeowner had resided in their home for 13 years, up from just eight years in 2010. That means there are fewer homes available today for those who want to buy.6

It’s possible that an increase in new construction could offer some relief. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) expects single-family housing starts to total one million this year, the highest level since 2007. And NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun predicts the average price of new construction will decline slightly as builders shift to building smaller, more affordable homes.7

However, these efforts may not be enough to meet current demand. “Despite improvements to new construction and short waves of sellers, next year will once again fail to bring a solution to the inventory shortage,” predicts Realtor.com Senior Economist George Ratiu. “In 2020, we expect inventory to struggle to grow and could instead reach a historic low level.”8

What does it mean for you? If you’re looking to buy a starter home, be prepared to compete for the best listings. Start your search early, and if you’re up against a deadline (like a new baby), build in plenty of time to find the right home. We can help you assess your options, including new construction and up-and-coming developments.

 

 MORTGAGE RATES WILL REMAIN LOW

YES…Thank goodness.  Mortgage rates will remain low.  Mortgage rates have declined more than a full percentage point since November 2018, when they hit a recent peak of 4.94%.9 The Mortgage Bankers Association predicts rates will remain low, at around 3.7%, through mid-2021.10

While it may not seem significant, on a $200,000 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, that lower rate means buyers could save around $145 on their monthly payment and more than $52,000 over the life of their mortgage. Lower mortgage rates make homeownership more accessible and affordable for buyers.

Although economists expect mortgage rates to stay low, they caution against waiting to act. Economic factors, shifts in supply and demand, or unforeseen impacts of the November election could cause rates to rise unexpectedly. “We recommend borrowers with long-term plans of staying in their homes to lock in a low rate now because there’s no telling how long these low rates will last,” warns Preetam Purohit, a capital markets trader at Embrace Home Loans.11

What does it mean for you? If you’re looking to buy a home, act soon to lock in a historically low mortgage rate. It will minimize your monthly payment and could save you a bundle over the long term. And if you plan to stay in your current home for a while, consider whether it makes sense to refinance your mortgage at today’s lower rates.

 

 MILLENNIALS WILL DRIVE THE MARKET

Millennials are expected to account for more than half of all mortgages this year, outnumbering Generation X and Baby Boomers combined. It’s not surprising, considering their age and stage of life. In 2020, the largest cohort of millennials will turn 30, and the oldest millennials will turn 39.8

“Family changes tend to drive home-buying decisions,” explains Realtor.com Chief Economist Danielle Hale. “Millennials are going to be active in the housing market not just because they’re just at the age when they’re thinking about becoming first-time home buyers, but they’re also in the age range when they’re having kids.”12

Younger millennials flocked to urban centers that offered easy access to work, shopping, and restaurants. But high prices, lack of square footage, and subpar schools are driving millennials out to the suburbs as they begin to marry and expand their families.

In response, a new model for suburban living has emerged. “Hipsturbias,” or mixed-use communities that bring the live/work/play concept to the suburbs, were recently named one of the top real estate trends for 2020 by the Urban Land Institute.4

 What does it mean for you? If you’re a millennial who has been priced out of urban living or is looking for more space for your growing family, a number of suburbs in our area have a lot to offer. We can point you towards the communities that will best meet your needs. And if you’re a homeowner with plans to sell, give us a call. We know how to market your home to millennials … and can help you sell quickly for top dollar by appealing to this leading market segment!

 

I AM HERE TO GUIDE YOU

While national real estate numbers can provide a “BIG PICTURE” outlook, real estate is local. As a local market expert, I can guide you through the ins and outs of our market (Atlanta and North Georgia and the issues most likely to impact sales and home values in your particular neighborhood.

If you’re considering buying or selling a home in 2020, contact me now to schedule a Free Consultation. I will work with you to develop an action plan to meet your real estate goals this year.  Here are some suggestions!

 

START PREPARING TODAY

If you plan to BUY this year:

Get pre-approved for a mortgage. If you plan to finance part of your home purchase, getting pre-approved for a mortgage will give you a jump-start on the paperwork and provide an advantage over other buyers in a competitive market. The added bonus: you will find out how much you can afford to borrow and budget accordingly.

  1. Create your wish list. How many bedrooms and bathrooms do you need? How far are you willing to commute to work? What’s most important to you in a home? We can set up a customized search that meets your criteria to help you find the perfect home for you.
  2. Come to our office. The buying process can be tricky. We’d love to guide you through it. We can help you find a home that fits your needs and budget, all at no cost to you. Give us a call to schedule an appointment today!

 

If you plan to SELL this year:

Call me for a FREE Comparative Market Analysis. A CMA not only gives you the current market value of your home, it will also show how your home compares to others in the area. This will help us determine which repairs and upgrades may be required to get top dollar for your property, and it will help us price your home correctly once you’re ready to list.

  1. Prep your home for the market. Most buyers want a home they can move into right away, without having to make extensive repairs and upgrades. I can help you determine which ones are worth the time and expense to deliver maximum results.
  2. Start decluttering. Help your buyers see themselves in your home by packing up personal items and things you don’t use regularly and storing them in an attic or storage locker. This will make your home appear larger, make it easier to stage … and get you one step closer to moving when the time comes!

 

CALL ME AND LET’S TALK ABOUT YOUR PLANS FOR 2020

Anit Wheeler Signature

 404.219.1938

 

 

Member of the Institute of Luxury Home Marketing  *  Certified Master Negotiator *    Social Media & Marketing

Sources:

  1. NBC News –
    https://www.nbcnews.com/business/economy/what-impending-recession-new-survey-shows-most-people-think-they-n1098511
  2. Curbed –
    https://www.curbed.com/2019/1/10/18139601/recession-impact-housing-market-interest-rates
  3. HousingWire –
    https://www.housingwire.com/articles/corelogic-expects-home-prices-to-do-this-in-the-next-12-months/
  4. Forbes –
    https://www.forbes.com/sites/alyyale/2019/11/15/2020-housing-outlook-expert-predictions-for-mortgage-rates-home-prices-tech-and-more/#343ea4522935
  5. National Association of Realtors –
    https://www.nar.realtor/newsroom/expect-continued-economic-growth-slower-real-estate-price-gains-and-small-chance-for-recession-in
  6. Redfin –
    https://www.redfin.com/blog/homeowners-staying-in-their-homes-longer/
  7. HousingWire –
    https://www.housingwire.com/articles/builders-are-coming-to-the-housing-markets-rescue/
  8. com –
    https://www.realtor.com/research/2020-national-housing-forecast/
  9. YCharts –
    https://ycharts.com/indicators/30_year_mortgage_rate
  10. MBA Mortgage Market Forecast November 2019 –
    https://www.mba.org/news-research-and-resources/research-and-economics/forecasts-and-commentary
  11. Dallas Morning News –
    https://www.dallasnews.com/sponsored/real-estate/2019/11/23/experts-predict-where-mortgage-interest-rates-land-in-2020/
  12. com –
    https://www.realtor.com/news/trends/biggest-changes-coming-in-2020-real-estate-and-tips-for-buyers-and-sellers/

5 Good Reasons to Sell Your Home this Winter

Sell your home in the Winter

Winter is a GREAT time to Sell Your Home!

5 Good Reasons To Sell Your Home This Winter

Every year I have clients that ask me about listing their home in the winter.  The old myth that winter is not the time to list or sell your home is just that…a myth! 

I have sold homes and properties in the winter, spring, summer and fall. 

Really. 

I remember about two years ago closing on a lovely farm house and the closing was the first week of January.  Another home ($1.8 million) went under contract in November and closed between Christmas and New Years! 

My personal belief is that there is always a BUYER out there ready to purchase your home. The season doesn’t matter.  When the time is right..the right Buyer will come along.  In the meantime, below are…

 

FIVE GOOD REASONS TO SELL YOUR HOME THIS WINTER~

1. Demand Is Strong

The latest Buyer Traffic Report from the National Association of Realtors ( NAR) shows that buyer demand remains strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing, and able to purchase, and are in the market right now. More often than not, in many areas of the country, multiple buyers are competing with each other to buy the same home. Atlanta is NO exception. The Buyers are looking for YOUR home. You may just want to take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market.

2. There Is Less Competition Now

Inventory  is still under the 6-month supply needed for a normal housing market. (And less in many areas in the Atlanta area. This means in the majority of the country, there are not enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers in the market.

Historically, a homeowner would stay an average of six years in his or her home. Since 2011, that number has hovered between nine and ten years. That said, there is a pent-up desire for many homeowners to move as they were unable to sell over the last few years due to a negative equity situation. As home values continue to appreciate, more and more homeowners will be given the freedom to move.

Many homeowners were reluctant to list their homes over the last couple of years, for fear they would not find a home to move into. That is all changing now as more homes are coming on the market at the higher price range. The choices buyers have will continue to increase. Don’t wait until additional inventory comes to market before you decide to sell. BE AHEAD OF THE MARKET!

3. Buyers Are Serious at This Time of Year

Traditionally, homeowners think about spring as a great time to list their homes, when more buyer traffic may be out there actively searching. In the winter, however, the buyers who are seeking a home – whether for relocation or otherwise – are serious ones. They’re ready to make offers and they’re eager to move, often quickly. Your house may be exactly what they’re looking for, so listing when other potential sellers are holding off may be your best opportunity to shine.

4. There Will Never Be a Better Time to Move Up

If your next move will be into the premium or luxury market, now is the time to move up. There is currently ample inventory for sale at higher price ranges. This means if you’re planning on selling a starter or trade-up home and moving into your dream home, you’ll be able to do that now. Demand for your entry-level home is high, and inventory in the luxury or premium market is too.

According to CoreLogic, prices are projected to appreciate by 5.6% over the next year. If you are moving to a higher-priced home, it will wind up costing you more in raw dollars (both in down payment and in your mortgage) if you wait.

5. It’s Time to Move On With Your Life

Look at the reason you decided to sell in the first place and determine whether it’s worth waiting.

*Is money more important than being with family?

*Are you ready to follow your dream?

*Is there a lifestyle change you are wanting to make?

Only you know the answers to these questions. You have the power to take control of the situation by putting your home on the market NOW. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire.

That is what is truly important.

If I can answer any questions for you or if you want me to do a comparative marketing study (FREE) on your home, call me today to schedule an appointment to discuss questions.  (Or we can just chat about real estate) You can reach me on my cell at 404-219-1938.

 

Anita G. Wheeler/BROKER   404-219-1938   E-mail:  AtlantaTopRealtor@gmail.com

 

Anita Wheeler Co. Logo

 

Member of the Institute of Luxury Home Marketing    Certified Master Negotiator     Social Media & Marketing

 

Working with a Local Real Estate Professional in 2020

Working with a Local Real Estate Professional Makes All the Difference [INFOGRAPHIC] | MyKCM

Highlights

Choosing the right real estate professional is one of the most impactful decisions you can make in your home buying or selling process for 2020!

  • A real estate professional can explain current market conditions and break down what they will mean to you and your family. In addition, a professional real estate agent can sit down with you and understand your goals, aspirations, and dreams for your new home or in selling your current home
  • If you’re considering buying or selling a home in 2020, make sure to work with someone who has the experience to answer all of your questions about pricing, contracts, and negotiations.

Do you have any questions about buying or selling a hone?  Call me and let’s talk.

Anita G. Wheeler   

404.219.1938 

E-mail: AtlantaTopRealtor@gmail.com

 

5 Steps to Finding Your Next Home…..

Whether you’re a first-time buyer or a seasoned homeowner, shopping for a new home can feel daunting. In fact, 56% of buyers said that “finding the right property” was the most difficult step in the home buying process. Buying a home is a significant commitment of both time and money. And a home purchase has the power to improve both your current quality of life and your future financial security, so the stakes are high.

Follow these five steps—and complete the corresponding worksheet offered below—to assess your priorities, streamline your search, and choose your next home with confidence.

STEP 1: Set Your Goals and Priorities

The first step to finding your ideal home is determining WHY you want to move. Do you need more space? Access to better schools? Less maintenance? Or are you tired of throwing money away on rent when you could be building equity? Pinpointing the reasons why you want to move can help you assess your priorities for your home search.

Don’t forget to think about how your circumstances might change over the next few years. Do you expect to switch jobs? Have more children? Get a pet? A good rule of thumb is to choose a house that will meet your family’s needs for at least the next five to seven years.2 Be sure to set your goals accordingly.

STEP 2: Determine Your Budget

Many financial professionals recommend following the “28/36 Rule” to determine how much you can afford to spend on a home. The rule states that you should spend no more than 28% of your gross monthly income on housing expenses (e.g., mortgage, taxes, insurance) and a maximum of 36% of your gross monthly income on your total debt obligations (i.e., housing expenses PLUS any other debt obligations, like car loans, student loans, credit card debt, etc.).3

Of course, the 28/36 rule only provides a rough guideline. Getting pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage BEFORE you begin shopping for homes will give you a much more accurate idea of how much you can borrow. Add your pre-approved mortgage amount to your downpayment to find out your maximum purchasing potential.

STEP 3: Choose a Location

When it comes to real estate, WHERE you choose to buy is just as important as WHAT you choose to buy.
Do you prefer a rural, urban, or suburban setting? How long of a commute are you willing to make? Which neighborhoods feed into your favorite schools? These decisions will impact your day-to-day life while you live in the home.

Another important factor to consider is how the area is likely to appreciate over time. Choosing the right neighborhood can raise the profit potential of your home when it comes time to sell. Look for communities that are well maintained with high home-ownership rates, low crime rates, and access to good schools, desired retail establishments, and top employers.4

STEP 4: Decide Which Features You Need (and Want) in a Home

Start with the basics, like your ideal number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and square footage. Do you prefer a one-story or two-story layout? Do you want a swimming pool? Keep in mind, you may not find a home with all of your “wants,” or even all of your “needs” … at least not at a price you can afford. The reality is, most of us have to make a few compromises when it comes to buying a home.
Some buyers will opt for a longer commute to get a larger, newer home in the suburbs. Others will sacrifice hardwood floors or an updated kitchen so that their kids can attend their desired school.

If you’re faced with a tough choice about how or what to compromise in your home search, return to STEP 1. What were your original goals and motivations for moving? Reminding yourself of your true priorities can often provide the clarity that you need.

STEP 5: Meet with a Real Estate Agent

A good real estate agent can remove much of the stress and uncertainty from the home search process. From setting goals to securing a loan to selecting the best neighborhood to meet your needs, we will be there to assist you every step of the way. And no one has more access to home listings, past sales data, or market statistics than a professional agent. We can set up a customized search that alerts you as soon as a new listing you might like goes live. Better yet, we get notified about many of the hottest homes even BEFORE they hit the market.

You might guess that the VIP service we provide is very expensive. Well, the good news is, we can represent you throughout the entire home buying process at NO COST to you. It’s true; the home seller pays a buyer agent’s fee at closing. So you can benefit from our time, experience, and expertise without paying a dime. It’s no wonder 87% of buyers choose to purchase their home with the help of an agent.1 And although we’ve listed it here as STEP 5, the reality is, it’s never too early (or too late) to contact an agent about buying a home. Whether you plan to buy today, next month, or next year, there are steps you can (and should) be taking to prepare for your purchase.

Call me today to schedule a free consultation! I would love to help you decide if this is the time for you to buy a home or list your home. 404-219-1938

Anita G. Wheeler

 

 

 

Sources:

  1. NAR 2019 Home Buyers & Sellers Generational Trends Report – https://www.nar.realtor/sites/default/files/documents/2019-home-buyers-and-sellers-generational-trends-report-08-16-2019.pdf
  2. Architectural Digest – https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/this-is-how-long-you-should-live-in-your-house-before-selling-it
  3. Investopedia – https://www.investopedia.com/terms/t/twenty-eight-thirty-six-rule.asp
  4. Money Talks News – https://www.moneytalksnews.com/20-clues-youre-buying-home-the-right-neighborhood/

Simplifying the Market

5 BEST STRATEGIES TO DOWNSIDE YOUR HOME

Downsizing Your Home

In our “bigger is better” culture, there’s an expectation that each home should be larger and grander than the last. But life changes like divorce, kids leaving for college, or even the simple act of growing older can prompt us to find a smaller home that better suits our shifting needs and lifestyle.

In fact, the advantages of downsizing are being increasingly recognized. A “tiny house movement” has gained passionate advocates who appreciate the benefits of living simply at any age and stage of life. Not only does a smaller home typically cost less, it also takes less time and effort to maintain.1

Whatever your reasons are for downsizing, the process can seem overwhelming. That’s why I’ve outlined five steps to guide you on your journey. And in the end, I hope you’ll find that less is more … more comfort, more security, and more time and energy to spend on the activities and the people that you love.   

 

5 STEPS TO DOWNSIZING SUCCESS

1. Determine Your Goals and Limitations

The first step is to figure out your goals for your new living environment. Do you want to live closer to family? Are you hoping to cut down on home maintenance? Are you looking for a community with certain amenities?

You should also consider any limitations that will impact the home you choose. For example, are stairs an issue? Do you need access to medical care? In the case of divorce, are there child-custody issues you need to take into account?

Estimate how long you plan to stay in your new home. Do you expect your needs to change during that time?

Make a “wish list” of features and prioritize them from most to least important. If you’d like any assistance with this process, give me a call!  (404-219-1938) I would be happy to sit down with you for a free consultation.  I can also help you assess the value of your current home so you can set a realistic budget for your new one.

2. Find the Perfect New Home

Once you’ve established your “wish list,” we can begin the search for your new home. As local market expert, I  know the ins and outs of all the top communities in our Atlanta. I can help you determine the neighborhood and type of home that will best fit your wants and needs.

From family neighborhoods to retirement communities, I serve clients in all stages of life. If you or a loved one are in need of extended support, I can also share my knowledge of the assisted living facilities in town and help you identify those that offer the optimal level of care. I spent the past three years as a guardian for my 95 year old aunt and I feel like I have a realistic view on retirement communities. (I should write a book!)

Are you planning to relocate out of town? I can refer you to a trusted real estate professional in your target area who can help you with your search.

3. Sell Your Current Home

If you’re ready to sell your current home, I will begin the process of preparing to list it as we search for your new one.

I have a special interest in helping homeowners who are facing major life transitions, and we offer a full-service real estate experience that aims to remove as much of the stress and hassle of selling your home as possible. I also understand that many of our clients choose to downsize for financial reasons, so we employ tactics and strategies to maximize the potential sales revenue of your home.

I do this by employing a proven three-part approach, which focuses on optimum preparation, pricing, and promotion. As part of that plan, I invest in an aggressive marketing strategy that utilizes online and social media platforms to connect with consumers and offline channels to connect with local real estate agents. This ensures your property gets maximum exposure to prospective buyers.

4. Sort and Pack Your Belongings

Even before you find your new home, you can begin preparing for your move. A smaller home means less space for your furniture and other possessions, so you will need to decide what to keep and what to sell or donate. Sorting through an entire house full of belongings will take time, so begin as early as possible.

Parting with personal possessions can be an extremely emotional process. My daughter actually owns the #1 Estate Sale Company in Georgia and has conducted over 850 sales!  Here are some tips:  Start with a small, unemotional space like a laundry or powder room and work your way up to larger rooms. Focus on eliminating duplicates and anything you don’t regularly use. If you have sentimental pieces, family heirlooms, or just useful items you no longer need, think about who in your life would benefit from having them. For large collections, consider keeping one or two favorite pieces and photographing the rest to put in an album.2

Make sure the items you keep help you achieve the goals you outlined in Step 1. For example, if you want a home that’s easier to clean, cut down on knickknacks that require frequent dusting. If you’re moving to be closer to your grandchildren, choose the shatterproof plates over the antique china.

Allow yourself time to take breaks if you start to feel overwhelmed. You might want to consider hiring an organizer!  If you’re helping a loved one with a move, try to be a patient listener if they want to stop and share stories about particular items or memories throughout the process.3 This can be therapeutic for them and an opportunity for you to learn family history that may otherwise have been forgotten.

5. Get Help When You Need It

Moving is stressful in any situation. But if you’re downsizing due to health issues or a major life change, it can be an especially tough transition. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

Seek out friends and family members who can assist with packing and decluttering. If that’s not an option, or if you need additional help, as I mentioned above you may want to consider hiring a home organizer, full-service moving company, or even an estate company if you think you have enough that you want to sell.  Consultations are free!!

If financial constraints are holding back, let us know. I can help you explore the possibility of tapping into the equity in your current home now. That way you can afford to get the assistance you need to make your transition as smooth as possible.

ARE YOU LIVING YOUR BEST LIFE?

If your current home no longer suits your needs, maybe it’s time to consider a change. I would love to help you explore your options. Contact me today to schedule a FREE no-obligation consultation. CALL 404-219-1938.

 

 

Sources:

  1. The Tiny Life –
    https://thetinylife.com/what-is-the-tiny-house-movement/
  2. My Move –
    https://www.mymove.com/moving/senior-guide-downsizing/
  3. Daily Caring –
    https://dailycaring.com/5-tips-to-downsizing-for-seniors-keepsakes-mementos/
  4. National Association of Senior Move Managers –
    https://www.nasmm.org

5 TIPS TO GETTING YOUR HOME SOLD FAST!!

 


SELLING YOUR HOUSE NOW!   by Anita G. Wheeler

 

Since June of last year, we have seen an increase in the inventory of homes for sale month per month. Every spring and summer, the inventory increases because people want to sell their home. For those with children, they may want to be in their new home for the beginning of the school year.

If you are one of those Sellers, you may find these 5 tips helpful in getting your home sold NOW!.

 

#1. PRICE IT RIGHT

 DEFINITELY #1   As we mentioned at the beginning, more inventory coming into the market guarantees there will be some competition. (It most certainly depends on the price range of your home and your specific market.)  However, you will want to make sure your home is noticed. The key to selling your house is ensuring it is Priced to Sell Immediately (PTSI). That way, your home will be seen by the greatest amount of Buyers and will sell at a great price before more competition comes to market!  Please take note of what comes next…

         THE MARKET VALUE OF YOUR HOME IS NOT

         * What You have in it.   

         * What You need out of it. 

         * What it is appraised for.   

         * What the tax office says it is worth. 

         *  What it is insured for.

        THE MARKET VALUE OF YOUR HOME IS

          * What a Buyer is willing to pay for the property- TODAY.   

          * Based on Today’s Market.   Based on Today’s Competition.   

          * Based on Location. 

          * Based on the Buyer’s perception of  Your Properties Current Condition. 

                                PRICE YOUR HOME TO SELL!

              

#2.   MAKE BUYERS FEEL AT HOME

YOU SHOULD DECLUTTER! Pack away all personal items like pictures, awards, and sentimental belongings. Make them feel like they belong in this house!  You want your home to show it’s best every showing.  

According to a recent report from The National Association of Realtors  “83% of Buyers’ agents said staging a home made it easier for a Buyer to visualize the property as a future home and staged homes SOLD!”

Not only will your house spend less time on the market, but the same report mentioned that,

“One-quarter of Buyers’ agents said that staging a home increased the dollar value offered between 1 – 5%, compared to other similar homes on the market that were not staged.”

 

#3.   KEEP IT ORGANIZED

Since you took the time to declutter, keep it organized! Before the Buyers show up, pick up toys, make the bed, and put away clean dishes. It is also a good idea to put out some cookies fresh from the oven or a scented candle. Buyers will remember the smell of your home! According to the same report, the kitchen is one of the most important rooms to stage in order to attract more buyers. (YOUR Master Bath is #2).

 

#4.   GIVE BUYERS FULL ACCESS

One of the top 5 Elements when selling your home is ACCESS!  If your home is available anytime, that opens up more opportunity to find a Buyer right away. Some Buyers, especially those relocating, typically or on a set schedule.  If they cannot get into the house, they will move on to the next one.  Be sure your home is on lock-box so Agents can have access to PREVIEW!!  Encourage other agents to PREVIEW so they can encourage their potential Buyer’s to put your home on their list.

 

#5    PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHS ARE A MUST!

The photographs of your home are the first impression a Buyer sees!  They may even determine whether you get on their list of homes to see!!  In addition those photographs are used for marketing, brochures, etc. and MUST be shot by a professional home photographer. When interviewing a listing agent be sure to ask to see brochures and other marketing materials to assure that your home will be VIEWED in its best light.  In this modern day of technology you can be assured that prospective purchasers are looking all over the Internet (Zillow, Realtor.com, etc.) and the first impression of your home is CRITICALLY important.

Anit Wheeler Signature

Bottom Line:  If you want to sell your home in the least amount of time, at the best price, with as little hassle as possible CALL ME today and let’s talk about HOW to get your home SOLD. Call for a FREE CONSULTATION and Home Evaluation! 404.219.1938

 

 

1125 Sanctuary Parkway  Alpharetta, Ga. 30022 770442-7300 License#100951

Woodlawn Wedding and Event Venue FOR SALE!

 

WOODLAND GARDENS AND EVENT CENTER An entrepreneur’s dream, live the life you have always imagined; owning a fabulous venue for hosting weddings and events, a place for creating memories that will last a lifetime! This is a rare opportunity to own a beautiful property situated on 5+/- acres, located just six miles east of Cleveland, Georgia in White County.  The event center was built around a rustic, circa 1896 schoolhouse with original heart of pine floors and convenient private spaces that make getting ready easy and fun for a bridal party. Additional structures include a spacious, covered and open outdoor event hall with a stacked-stone fireplace and a separate building with commercial bathrooms and a commercial kitchen, perfect for catering. The beautiful, gated grounds include gorgeous gardens, a pool with waterfalls, a fire pit area, a goat barn, a chicken barn and a greenhouse; the perfect backdrop for any outdoor event!   PRICED $995,000  REDUCED THIS WEEK  $750,000 Don’t Miss This Opportunity to Own this Lifestyle Business!  CALL TODAY for additional information.  404-219-1938

Will Your Remodel Pay Off? The Best (and Worst) Ways to Spend Your Budget

 

 

Most new homeowners have something about their property that they want to change. And as family needs and design trends shift over time, many will eventually choose to remodel. Some homeowners make updates to their property before listing it to maximize their potential sales revenue.

Whatever your reasons are for taking on a home improvement project, it’s wise to consider how the money you invest will impact your home’s value.

We’ve taken a look at six popular home renovations and identified those that—on average—have the best and worst returns on investment. So before you lift a hammer or hire a contractor, take a look at this list and see if your remodeling efforts will reward you when it comes time to sell.

 

RENOVATIONS THAT PAY OFF

These three common home improvement projects not only add function and style to your home, but they also offer a strong return on investment. Making strategic upgrades to your property will help you increase its value over time.

 

Minor Kitchen Remodel

The kitchen is often referred to as the “heart of the home,” and for good reason. Traditionally used for preparing food, it has morphed into so much more. Many of us now eat our family meals in the kitchen, it serves as a favorite spot for homework and kids’ art projects, and it’s the place guests tend to gather when we host events.

Because we spend so much time in our kitchens, it’s natural that we will eventually want to make updates and upgrades to better suit our needs and changing style preferences.

Luckily, a minor kitchen remodel is one of the best investments you can make in your home. According to Remodeling Magazine’s annual Cost vs. Value Report, it has an average 80.5% return on investment.1

The key to making a kitchen remodel pay off is to keep it modest in scale. Spend too much on custom or high-end selections, and you are less likely to recoup your investment. Instead, make an effort to keep your existing layout if it works for you and your family. Paint or reface cabinets instead of replacing them. Update countertops with low-maintenance quartz and swap out old light fixtures with modern alternatives. Replace outdated appliances with energy-efficient models. The average cost for a minor kitchen remodel is $22,500, and it’s likely to recoup more than $18,000 at resale.1

 

Wood Deck Addition

A deck addition is a popular way to extend and enhance the use of your outdoor space. It’s the perfect spot for grilling, dining alfresco, and entertaining. In fact, 81% of surveyed homeowners said they have a greater desire to be home since completing a deck addition.2

For a 16 x 20-foot wood deck, you can expect to spend around $13,000. Fortunately, the money you invest offers an average return of 76%.1

Decks made of composite material are a popular alternative these days, as they don’t require the regular sanding and staining that wood decks need. However, at an average cost of $19,000 for a 16 x 20-foot composite deck, they are significantly more expensive. Plus, the expected return on investment is only 69%.1 Still, if you plan to hire someone to provide regular maintenance to a wood deck, then a composite deck may offer cost savings over time.

 

 Siding Replacement

Everyone knows good curb appeal is important when selling your home. And while it may not be the most exciting way to spend your remodeling budget, new siding can make a big impression on buyers … and your selling price.

Your home’s exterior is one of the first things buyers see when they view your home. It sets the tone for what they are going to see inside. It also gives an impression of how well the property has been maintained. Worn, peeling, or rotted siding can be a major red flag for buyers.

Replacing 1,250 square feet of siding costs around $16,000 and will net you an average of 76% at resale.1

For an even greater impact, consider replacing a portion of your siding with manufactured stone veneer. It can have a dramatic effect on the visual appeal of your home. A 300 square foot area will run you around $8,900, but you can expect to see a nearly 95% return when it comes time to sell.1

 

RENOVATIONS WITH WEAK RETURNS

These three popular remodeling projects are homeowner favorites. However, don’t expect to see a high rate of return at resale. Instead, consider them an investment in your current quality of life. Just make sure you’ll be living in the home long enough to make them worthwhile.

 

Major Kitchen Remodel

If there’s one room the majority of homeowners dream about making over, it’s their kitchen. From custom cabinetry to high-end appliances, the possibilities are endless. But those dreams can come at a cost.

An upscale kitchen remodel with high-end cabinetry and countertops, commercial-grade appliances, and designer features can cost upwards of $130,000. And unfortunately, you’ll only get back around 60% at resale. Even a mid-range kitchen remodel that includes new semi-custom wood cabinets, laminate countertops, and energy-efficient appliances could run you around $66,000 and net you a mere 62% at resale.1

Of course, an outdated or non-functional kitchen could turn buyers off from your home completely …  and keep you from enjoying it yourself! So if your kitchen needs a major remodel, you shouldn’t necessarily scrap your plans. Just go in with the realization that you may only get back a fraction of what you invest. Then you can decide which upgrades are worth the splurge.

In-ground Pool

Few additions deliver more entertainment or enjoyment than an in-ground pool. It brings families and friends together, provides a break from the summer heat, and offers a fun and convenient way to stay fit. Plus, you’ll be the envy of your neighbors! But before you dive into a pool addition, consider whether the benefits outweigh the (substantial) costs.

The average expense to install a standard 18 x 36-foot in-ground pool is $57,500. And the estimated return at resale is only or 43%.2 In addition to the installation cost, plan to spend money each year on maintenance, repairs, and additional insurance.

However, 92% of surveyed homeowners said they “have a greater desire to be home” since installing a pool, and 83% have “an increased sense of enjoyment when they are at home.” For you and your family, the perks of a pool may be priceless.2

Master Suite Addition

If you own a house built before the 1980s, there’s a good chance it lacks a master suite, which is a feature that has become commonplace in most newly constructed homes.3

Master bedrooms have evolved from a simple place to sleep into a homeowner’s retreat—often featuring a sitting area, his-and-hers walk-in closets, and an attached bathroom with double vanities, a soaking tub, and a walk-in shower.

And master suite additions have become increasingly popular—both in homes that lack one as well as those with aging owners who can no longer accommodate stairs to an upper-level bedroom.

But what’s the typical return at resale? Unfortunately, a master suite addition offers one of the lowest returns of any remodeling project. With a median cost of $125,000, most sellers will only recoup around 52% of their investment. Nevertheless, in a survey of homeowners, the majority were satisfied with their decision to add a master suite, giving it a “Joy Score” of 10 out of 10.4

 

WEIGHING COST VS. BENEFIT

It’s always wise to enter into a remodeling project with knowledge of how it will impact your home’s value. In most cases, upscale or highly-customized upgrades are less likely to offer a high rate of return. That said, home renovations that improve your quality of life and enhance your enjoyment may be worthwhile no matter the cost.

Anit Wheeler Signature

 

GET A CUSTOMIZED ANALYSIS OF YOUR PROJECT

We’ve been talking averages. But the truth is, the actual return you can expect on a home improvement project will vary depending on your particular home and neighborhood. If you have plans to remodel, call me!  (404-219-1938).

I’d be happy to conduct a free analysis to determine how the renovations will impact the value of your home!  Anita

 

 

Sources:

  1. 2019 Cost vs. Value Report -
https://www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/2019/
  2. NAR’ Remodeling Impact Report – https://www.nar.realtor/sites/default/files/documents/2018-05-remodeling-impact-outdoor-features-05-23-2018.pdf
  3. Zillow -
https://www.zillow.com/blog/evolution-of-the-master-bedroom-48286/

House Logic -
https://www.houselogic.com/by-room/bedroom-closet/master-suite-addition-return-investment/

 

Starting the Search for Your Dream Home? Here are 5 TIPS…..

 

 

In today’s real estate market, low inventory dominates the conversation in many areas of the country.  It can often be frustrating to be a first-time homebuyer if you aren’t prepared.

In a realtor.com article entitled, How to Find Your Dream Home—Without Losing Your Mind,”the author highlights some steps that first-time homebuyers can take to help carry their excitement of buying a home throughout the whole process.

1. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage Before You Start Your Search
One way to show you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search. Even if you are in a market that is not as competitive, understanding your budget will give you the confidence of knowing whether or not your dream home is within your reach.

This step will also help you narrow your search based on your budget and won’t leave you disappointed if the home you tour, and love, ends up being outside your budget!

2. Know the Difference Between Your ‘Must-Haves’ and ‘Would-Like-To-Haves’
Do you really need that farmhouse sink in the kitchen to be happy with your home choice? Would a two-car garage be a convenience or a necessity? Could the ‘man cave’ of your dreams be a future renovation project instead of a make-or-break right now?

Before you start your search, list all the features of a home you would like and then qualify them as ‘must-haves’, ‘should-haves’, or ‘absolute-wish list’ items. This will help keep you focused on what’s most important.

3. Research and Choose a Neighborhood You Want to Live In
Every neighborhood has its own charm. Before you commit to a home based solely on the house itself, the article suggests test-driving the area. Make sure that the area meets your needs for “amenities, commute, school district, etc. and then spend a weekend exploring before you commit.”

4. Pick a House Style You Love and Stick to It
Evaluate your family’s needs and settle on a style of home that would best serve those needs. Just because you’ve narrowed your search to a zip code, doesn’t mean that you need to tour every listing in that zip code.

An example from the article says, “if you have several younger kids and don’t want your bedroom on a different level, steer clear of Cape Cod–style homes, which typically feature two or more bedrooms on the upper level and the master on the main.”

5. Document Your Home Visits
Once you start touring homes, the features of each individual home will start to blur together. The article suggests keeping your camera handy to document what you love and don’t love about each property you visit.

Making notes on the listing sheet as you tour the property will also help you remember what the photos mean, or what you were feeling while touring the home.

The Bottom Line
In a high-paced, competitive environment, any advantage you can give yourself will help you on your path to buying your dream home.

Call me if I can assist you in finding your PERFECT home!

Anita Wheeler

c  404.219.1938 |  f  678.235.3069  | o 770.442.7300

Multi Million Dollar Sales Club
SRS Sellers Representative Specialist    Certified Negotiation Expert

 

Homeowners: Now Is A Good Time To Sell Your House

Homeowners: Now Is A Good Time To Sell Your House | MyKCM

Every month, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) releases their Seller Traffic Index as a part of their Realtors

Confidence Index. In the latest release, NAR reported that homeowners have been reluctant to sell their houses. This is

reflected when broken down by state. Only 11 states have a stable level of seller traffic compared to the remainder of the

country, which came in with a weak rating. As we can see in the following table, the number of people who moved last year

is half of what the rate was in the 1980s.

 

As we can see in the following table, the number of people who moved last year is half of what the rate was in the 1980s.

Homeowners: Now Is A Good Time To Sell Your House | MyKCM

This does not come as a surprise, as tenure length (the number of years someone owns a home before moving again) among existing homeowners has increased. It has risen from an average of 6 years from 1985 to 2008, up to 9.5 years over the last few years. This is shown in the graph below:

Homeowners: Now Is A Good Time To Sell Your House | MyKCM

 

As we can see, there is a pent-up seller demand!

What led to this change in behavior? Falling prices during the housing crisis led to many homeowners having negative equity in their home, meaning they owed more on their mortgage than the home was worth. Others were able to secure a low interest rate on their mortgage and have not been quick to obtain a new mortgage with a higher rate.

Will this trend continue?

Recently NAR reported that “69% of people believe now is a good time to sell a home.”

With a strong economy, low interest rates, and wages continuing to rise, some homeowners will be ready to put their house on the market and move up to the home of their dreams!

The Bottom Line

There is a great opportunity for sellers to take advantage of the current real estate market before new inventory comes to market. If you are considering selling your house or would like to know your options, let’s get together today to help you understand the possibilities available to you! Call me!

Anit Wheeler Signature

Anita G. Wheeler  Atlanta Fine Homes, Sotheby’s Realty  Cell:  404-219-1938  Office: 770-442-7300

Why Pet-Friendly Homes Are in Demand

Why Pet-Friendly Homes Are in High Demand | MyKCM

One of the many benefits of owning your own home is the freedom to find your ‘furever’ friend. By pointing out the aspects of your home that make it ‘pet-friendly’ in your listing, you’ll attract these buyers, rather than alienating the 68% of American households that have a pet!

If you are one of the many homeowners looking to list your home for sale, how do you stand out to the millions of pet parents searching for their dream home?

Whether a dog person, a cat person, or someone who prefers the company of another pet species, 99% of pet owners say that they consider their animal to be family. When finding a home, 95% of animal owners believe it is important that a housing community allows animals.

study by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) revealed that there are many aspects of the home buying, selling and owning experience that have been greatly impacted by our love for our pets.

This should come as no surprise, as $72 billion was spent on pets in the U.S in 2018. NAR’s President William E. Brown shed some light on the impact of pet owners and their home search.

“It is important to understand the unique needs and wants of animal owners when it comes to homeownership. REALTORS® understand that when someone buys a home, they are buying it with the needs of their whole family in mind; ask pet owners, and they will enthusiastically agree that their animals are part of their family.”

The Power of Pets When Choosing the Right Home

  • 89% of pet owners say they would not give up their pet due to a housing restriction
  • 81% of Americans say their pets play a role in their housing situation
  • 31% of animal owners have refused to put in an offer on a home because it wasn’t a good fit for their animals
  • 19% of Americans say they would consider moving for their pet
  • 12% percent have moved for their pet

New home builders have actually begun installing retractable pet gates that tuck away neatly inside door jams as a highly requested feature in new homes to attract pet-parents.

So, if you are a homeowner looking to sell in today’s pet-friendly environment, point out the features of your home that will attract pet owners:

  • Fully fenced in backyard – (91% of pet owners ranked this as the most important feature of a home to accommodate their pet)
  • Locations of dog parks/walking paths/pet-friendly beaches in the area (71% ranked this as the top feature of any neighborhood they would consider)
  • Proximity to veterinarians/groomers/pet supply stores (31%)

The Bottom Line

Americans love their pets and will look for pet-friendly features in the home they wish to buy, so take advantage of this knowledge by pointing out your home’s ability to meet their needs.

 

P.S. Meet Tai and Emma…these are my two dogs!  I LOVE my dogs and I bet you love your pets too.  Let me know if I can help you in finding a new home or sell your current home.

Anit Wheeler Signature

Know Your Competition

Check the competition in your neighborhood!
Know Your Atlanta Real Estate Company Competition
Time Your Listing Perfectly
Many industry experts say spring is the best season to list a home, but the truth is, this is a pretty wide time frame. The trick is to look for the sweet spot. For example, you can list your home before the influx of buyers hits during April and May, so your listing appears just as they’re starting their search.

See Your Competition In Person
As a home seller, you need to see for yourself how your home stacks up against the competition. Talk to your agent and ask if there are any homes you can drive by or open houses to attend so you can find out how you can improve your own home.

Look At Properties That Are NOT Selling
Observing properties that are selling can be helpful, but taking a look at properties that are not selling is just as important. Try to figure out why they are not selling at their current price, and see how the properties compare with your home. Doing this will help you avoid committing the same mistake when pricing your home, which can give you an edge over the
competition.

Use Great Photos
Nine out of ten buyers start their search online – your listing’s photos play a huge role in attracting potential buyers. Make sure your home is photo-ready before you take pictures. Highlight its best features, and avoid showing any eyesores, such as cluttered garages or outdated bathrooms. If you’re not quite confident with your photography skills, then you may want to consider hiring a professional photographer.

Make Sure Your Home Is Easily Accessible
When you have competition in your neighborhood, being prepared to present your home at any moment can give you a big advantage. Having multiple listings in a certain area means there may be more “impulse house showings.” In case some buyers overlook your listing online, there’s a good chance they’ll spot your “for sale” sign outside once they visit the neighborhood.

Be Creative
In some cases, properties can stay on the market for extended periods of time, even when their sellers aren’t really doing anything wrong. Try to make your listing more dynamic by using different strategies. Use new photos ever few weeks, and rewrite your sales ads every once in a while to keep it fresh. Previous buyers who may have looked at your listing may view it again in case they see a photo that was not there before. In addition, you can try asking people who have visited your home for feedback. Any information they provide can be useful in identifying how your home compares with similar properties they viewed, and if there are any improvements you need to make.

Want more helpful tips for buyers and sellers? Take a look at our Buyers and Sellers guide.

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