Recession, Inflation & Housing – Home Prices Fluctuate, Real Estate Market Responds to the Economy

Amazingly, financial reporters still are reluctant to say the American economy is in recession (which it most obviously is). Hence when inflation fully shows its ugly face, expect housing prices to catch up with oil which already accounts for the dying dollar (a currency no longer carrying much weight with OPEC as a basket of currencies is being embraced and the Euro and yen are taking preeminence).

Undoubtedly inflation and the recession caused by it shall weigh heavily on the Fed and we the American people. Since it seems financial reporters are usually about a year or two behind the actual occurrences in the market (that is reporting them honestly to the general public), always choosing to use colorful and positive language, it may be another year or two until we see the true signs of inflation in the real estate market. A big spending, pro-inflation government however will always prove inflationary when it comes to U.S. currency (since this sneakily reduces their repayments).

The U.S. economic forecast remains bleak to say the least. Latest reports released show that consumer-level inflation remains steady, while the housing slump shows no signs of improvement.

The U.S. consumer price index (CPI) rose 0.3% in March while the core rate, which excludes food and energy prices, was up 0.2%, following flat readings in February.

Energy prices are rising at a 17.0% year-over-year pace. Gasoline prices rose 5.2% and are up 26.0% from a year earlier.

Recent inflation reports underscore and highlight the the Federal Reserve’s ongoing challenges. “Ongoing hefty gains in headline prices will continue to needle (policymakers) despite the Fed’s near-term focus on economic risk, as the Fed faces an inflation problem that may have greater shelf life than the problems in the financial industry,” says Action Economics.

U.S. housing starts plunged 11.9% to a 0.947 million annualized rate in March, though after an upwardly revised 1.075 million pace in February (1.065 million before). Markets expected a more modest fall to 1.003 million. Starts are down 36.5% over last year. Permits fell 5.8% to a 0.927 million pace, and are down 40.9% over last year.

Contracts for housing will remain dismal as the recession deepens and the media hype dies down to the tune of reality.

Will Wallpaper Affect The Sales Price Of Your Home?

The Hester Prynne of literature might have worn a scarlet A to mark her past transgressions, but the house with too much wallpaper might be marked by a giant W in the minds of buyers. Wallpapering every room with pattern-intense wallpaper is a trend that goes in and out of vogue and was last popular in the U.S. in the 70s. Now, potential buyers who spurn its scarlet letter treat a home with too much of it with disdain.

Why Buyers “Hate” Wallpaper

Too much wallpaper can impact the sales price of a house, especially for the new generation of buyers who want homes that are “move in ready.” Previous buyers expected to remove unsightly wallpaper, repaint, and make minor initial improvements when they first moved in. Many buyers now regard what they don’t like as a deal breaker or as license to make a lowball offer for the inconvenience of changing a home to reflect their personal tastes.

Modern tastes tend to be more minimalist. Rooms with florals, plaids, or other prints on the walls and even the ceilings can be overwhelming and make a house look outdated. Large amounts of big flowers remind many people of their great grandmother’s house. Mirrored foils remind people of the 70s and 80s. Why wallpaper is such a big impediment to people often comes down two main factors.

First of all, many buyers have no vision and have a hard time imagining what a room would like without the wallpaper or with different paint. Even more than paint color, wallpaper is a reflection of personal taste. Real estate agents suggest that sellers make their homes more neutral to help buyers in seeing themselves in the space; even then, the result does not appeal to everyone.

Second, the older the wallpaper is, the more likelihood there is that removing it will be difficult. Some dry, strippable wallpaper from 20 or 30 years ago may come right off, but this is not always true, especially if the built-in glue was reinforced with paste. Other types of wallpaper bond to the wall, which makes removal challenging.

Does Wallpaper Impact The Ability To Sell A Home?

Some Realtors® note that whatever wallpaper is in place seldom meets the taste of a new buyer. Based on this, paint is safer. As a seller, should you remove the wallpaper in your house before you put it on the market? As you refurbish rooms, should you add new paper? The common wisdom is that you should be careful in your use of wallpaper when your main purpose is to sell your home. If you can, take it down.

Wallpaper can add a dramatic look to a room when used in moderation. Adding an accent wall of wallpaper that is coordinated to the paint color can make a room pop. Many interior designers recommend this technique. In cases where walls are in less than perfect condition, wallpapering with solid or textured paper can enhance the appearance of the room. Just make sure to select strippable paper.

Even if you’re selling, you can take advantage of the benefits of wallpaper. You just have to remember that you are preparing your home for someone else, not exercising your taste to make your home how you want it. When you move into your new home, you will once again have the freedom to craft your space for you and your family.

Selling a Home You Inherited

For many people, a home is the most important investment they own. Selling a home can be a long and challenging process. Some people wrongly assume that selling a home without professional help is the best option. Numerous studies show that working with a real estate agent helps a homeowner get more money for the house.

Some people inherit a home and need to sell it quickly. Inheriting a house in another state can be difficult. It is always hard to find a local real estate team to trust. Anyone wanting to sell their house quickly should work with our team.

Before selling, developing a plan is critical. A seller should look at the home and determine any repairs that need to be made. To make your property sell quickly, the owner should conduct various repairs before listing on the market.

A home seller should also speak with multiple real estate agents. A real estate agent can give the owner a reliable price range for the home.

The real estate market is booming in many parts of the country. There are some places where home prices continue to increase due to a lack of inventory. Some homes are selling within a few hours of hitting the market. Now is an excellent time for someone to sell.

The market is also robust in major cities. As the economy improves, more people are willing to move to find employment. The average selling price of a home is over $500,000 in many cities.

Preparing for a showing is critical. To sell fast, it needs to be in good shape. An experienced agent should be able to give an owner tips on the local real estate market. These tips should include what local buyers are looking for in a new home.

Landscaping is a neglected area of many homes. Before selling a home, upgrade the landscaping around a home to increase the value. Anyone who is saying “sell my house” should work with a real estate agent.

In some areas, new homes on the market receive multiple offers from buyers. Sellers should leverage multiple offers to get the highest possible price. By preparing accordingly for showings, sellers can maximize the total value of their home. With a strong housing market, now is the perfect time to sell a home. It is critical to work with an experienced realtor in the local area during this process.

FSBO – What You Should Know About Selling Your Own Home

The key to selling your home yourself is being properly prepared. If you aren’t, your home may remain on the market longer than you expect because you aren’t attracting and getting offers from qualified buyers. And this is where many homeowners become frustrated and start to think about giving up the dream of selling their homes themselves. However, some sellers are very successful at selling their own homes, and you can be one of them.

This report has been especially prepared to assist home sellers like yourself understand the process so you can sell your home quickly and for the price you want. To help you prepare, be aware of the following tips before deciding whether or not this is the right approach for you.

  1. Price your home correctly. Setting the correct asking price is critical. Setting the price too high can be as bad as setting it too low. Home prices are determined by fluctuations in the marketplace, and not by your emotional attachment to your home or what you think your home is worth. To establish a realistic price, compare the price, features, and condition of similar homes in both your neighbourhood and locations where similar homes have sold in the last few months. It is also important to be familiar with the terms of each potential sale. Terms are often as important as price in the current market. Work up a careful budget of your selling costs, and prepare a net proceeds sheet to determine an informed estimate of what you can expect to earn from the sale of your home. Prospective buyers may request a similar analysis of buying costs.
  2. Prepare your home for sale. First impressions are crucial. Ensure that your home makes a positive statement by carefully inspecting all details and viewing it, as objectively as possible, through the eyes of a buyer. Don’t ignore needed repairs and fix-ups: your prospective buyers certainly won’t! Your job is to make sure your home stands out favourably from the competition.
  3. Make sure you have all the necessary legal documentation. There are many important legal contracts and documents which you need to assemble, complete, and understand when selling your home. Below is a partial checklist of forms you will need for prospective buyers and for legal documentation.
    • Mortgage Payoff
    • Loan Application
    • Deposit Receipt
    • Property Profile Fact Sheet
    • Buyer’s Cost Sheet
    • Closing & Settlement
    • Personal Property
    • Exclusion List
    • Property Survey
    • Sellers Statement /Plot Plan of Representation
  4. Market Your Home Effectively. Beyond the sign on your lawn, you need to find effective ways to spread the word that your home is for sale. You can reach local buyers with ads in a newspaper, but you will reach just a small part of the possible market. Be sure to include buyers who may already be working with a realtor. To locate them, notify as many top agents as possible in your market in case their client’s criteria match what your home has to offer. Out-of-town buyers are an important target too, so create a strategy to reach them as well. Above all, be very customer service oriented and make it easy for pre-qualified buyers to view your home. That means making sure that someone is always available to answer the phone, respond promptly to messages, and be ready to give qualified prospects a tour of your home as quickly as possible.
  5. Remain objective when showing your home. Be sure to keep your emotions out of the sale of your home. The best way to do this during a showing is to remain physically in the background. If a prospective buyer says something negative about your home, you’re better off counter-balancing this point of view by calling attention to the positives instead of becoming defensive.
  6. Pre-qualify prospective buyers. Don’t waste time entertaining buyers who cannot afford to buy your home. Research their financial situation with respect to job security, salary, debts, liabilities and credit standing.
  7. Negotiate effectively and knowledgeably. There are a great many details that need to be resolved before a sale is considered final: price, terms, inspections, possession date, and buyer concerns and objections, to name a few. You must fully understand the contract you have drawn up so you can, in turn, explain the details and ramifications to the buyer, and make any necessary amendments to the sale. Have the contract you use thoroughly examined by your real estate attorney. Some real estate brokers may be willing to help you do this. While this is going on, work to maintain the buyer’s interest in your home so it doesn’t wane during negotiations.
  8. Know your buyer. Your objective during negotiations is to control the pace and set the duration. Try to determine what’s motivating potential buyers. Do they need to move quickly? Can they afford to pay the asking price for your home? Answering these questions will give you an advantage in the negotiations: you’ll know what you need to do to get what you want.
  9. Do not move out before you sell. Studies show that selling a vacant home is more difficult than selling one that is occupied. A vacant home looks forlorn, forgotten, and simply unappealing. And it could even cost you money. If you move out before you sell, you’re also letting prospective buyers know that you have a new home and are motivated to sell quickly. That can, of course, give the buyer an advantage at the negotiating table.
  10. Understand why you’re selling, but keep your reasons to yourself. Just as important as understanding your buyer is understanding yourself. Your reasons for selling can affect everything from how you price your home to how much time and money you invest in preparing it for sale. And knowing your motivation helps you determine your priorities: the money you walk away with, how long your property is on the market, or perhaps both. Different goals dictate different strategies. Someone who prefers to sell without a real estate agent to save the commission would indicate that money is a primary considerations (see “How to Assess Your Net Gain” below). Whatever your reasons may be, it is very important to keep them to yourself so you don’t put yourself at a disadvantage during negotiations. If anyone asks why you’re selling, simply tell them that your housing needs have changed.

How to Assess Your Net Gain

To find out whether or not you’ll come out ahead by selling your home yourself, consider that most buyers use real estate agents because it doesn’t cost them anything (the seller pays the agent’s fee). Be cautious: buyers, investors, and speculators who seek out For Sale by Owner properties are usually in search of a bargain. Low-ball offers from these buyers will usually net you a lot less in the long run. Determine for yourself the following:

  1. You need to be as prepared as possible with your marketing, negotiations, evaluations, showings, and all legal matters.
  2. Calculate what it will cost you to effectively market your home and put together all the necessary materials, from the “For Sale” sign to the contracts.
  3. What price will a buyer offer you as a For Sale by Owner, minus the costs identified in number 2 above? Is this net amount higher or lower than the price an experienced agent could net for you minus his/her commission?

Mobile Home Prices – How to Find Blue Book Value of Mobile Homes

The blue book value of a mobile home is exactly what it sounds like — a numerical value found in a book. In the past, there were multiple books. Today, there is only one book that contains the blue book value of mobile homes. It is called the N.A.D.A. Manufactured Housing Appraisal Guide. This guide is what the professionals use to determine the value of a mobile or manufactured home. The blue book value of a mobile home is calculated using a variety of criteria. This criteria may include geographic location, make, model, size and age of the home in question.

Even if you can access this manual, it is advisable to have a professional appraiser do the job for you. The formula for calculating the value of your mobile home can be quite complicated. Book value is going to be most accurate for mobile homes and areas that are deemed average in nature. It also depends on the position of the housing market in your area. Because this is such an in-depth process, you must depend on the services of a professional if you want things done right. There are certain reports you can purchase on the Internet that help you determine the market value of your mobile or manufactured home.

When you are buying or selling a mobile home, the blue book value will come into play. The majority of lenders require the book value when it comes to granting financing for people who need a mortgage loan in order to purchase their mobile or manufactured home. If you are not ready to hire a professional appraiser to come to your property, you can order an appraisal on the Internet. You will need to provide detailed information about the property for the online appraisal service to use. These types of services and reports provide you with an accurate idea of your mobile home’s blue book value so you can decide if you want to sell or not. Mobile homes do not usually appreciate in value, but this is not a hard and fast rule but rather a more general one.