The Thomas Team had a great luncheon meeting with our lender partner, Scott Miller of Met Life Home Mortgage, and his team yesterday at their new corporate digs. The focus of the meeting was for our team to get a complete understanding of the new world of home loans and the process from application to funding. To quote an old song from my youth “It Don’t Come Easy” . There are lots of new of steps and lots of different hand offs, gates and gate keepers. “Rushing” any deal these days is all but impossible as the banking industry is still reeling from the sub prime mess.
Mac & Mae
At the end of the day, 90% of all loans come through the federal entities Freddy Mac and Fannie Mae. So even if you are going to get your loan through Acme Savings & Loan or Ginormous National Bank, at the end of the day the money and the thumbs up or down are tied to Mac and Mae. That’s because Acme and Ginormous sell their loans to Freddy and Fannie, and while they once took in any ‘ole kinda loan like a lost puppy, they are now very picky.
We learned that all loan apps go through an automated desktop underwriting system. Using this system, the loan officer can make a determination if the loan has a chance of meeting the guidelines issues by Freddie and Fannie. The answer can be had in as little as 60 seconds. Now this is true IF the borrower has provided the loan officer all the info necessary, and that’s often a big IF.
Knowledge is Powerful Stuff
The Thomas Team now knows the ins and outs (okay, we now have a better understanding) of the new world of loan application, process and approval. We can better advise our Buyers and Sellers as to what they can expect and we can assist our lending partner in meeting and exceeding client’s expectations. At the end of the day, it’s really about doing business with people of integrity and expertise who value you and your clients. We highly recommend Scott Miller (email@example.com) and his team at Met Life (Snoopy).
Home Sales Up 29% YTD in New Albany
I just pulled the Year-to-date statistics for home sales in New Albany and was very pleasantly surprised at how strong they are. Through May, 2011, 124 single family homes have sold in the New Albany Plain Local School District versus 96 sold through May in 2010. This is a remarkable 29% increase in homes sold this year over last. TY/LY sales for the Greater Columbus area are down 16%.
Need Homes to Sell to Sustain Trend
With this leap forward in home sales, and a large inventory of homes currently in contract, New Albany is positioned to have a truly excellent year. The only stumbling block that I see right now is if the low number of homes for sale is not replenished. Inventory levels are off significantly. In order to sustain the current trend, it’s time for the “don’t have to sell, but want to sell” sellers to re-enter the market. If you fit that description or are a “have to sell” seller, then we want to talk with you! Call or email us today.
Hard to believe but true…
There are simply not enough homes available for sale in the New Albany Plain Local School District. New Albany real estate inventory levels are at record lows – off almost 40% from this time last year. Prices are stabilizing and buyers are looking. I have to say, if you’ve been on the fence about selling, this would be the time to get your New Albany home on the market.
Low Inventory in all Neighborhoods
Consider the following figures which point out how low the inventory is in each neighborhood we regularly track:
|Total Homes In
| % to
|New Albany Links*
|New Albany Country Club
At the peak of the market we often had 10% of the total number of homes in a neighborhood on the market. Don’t delay if you, or someone you know is interested in selling their home. The spring market has begun! Contact Kate or Tony at 614-939-1234 or firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss potential marketing and pricing strategies for your New Albany home in this current market.
*Includes Upper Clarenton. **Data is obtained from the Columbus Board of Realtors MLS and may not include all activity in the real estate market.
Search the MLS Yourself!
I had a phone call from a gentleman this week asking if I was the listing agent for a home for sale in New Albany. I replied that I wasn’t but that I could help him as a buyer agent to which he replied, “What’s that?” It made me realize that as Realtors, we use a lot of terms that may not be familiar to those not in the business. So I took a moment to explain to him what a buyer agent is along with explanations of other common terms.
Real Estate Brokers – Real estate brokers have a real estate broker’s license and operate a real estate brokerage. New Albany Realty is the brokerage that Kate & I work for.
Realtors® – A Realtor is a licensed real estate agent who is also a member of the National Association of Realtors® (NAR). We are members of NAR® and thus, are able to call ourselves Realtors.
Listing Agents – Listing agents are real estate agents who represent sellers, market their homes and work to get their sellers the best price and terms. In Ohio, with written permission listing agents may also represent the buyers for their listings.
Buyer Agents – Buyer agents are real estate agents who represent buyers, help them find homes that meet their criteria, and work to get their buyers the best price and terms. We have 2 Buyer Agents on our team – Bev Klein and Laura Kohler. Bev and Laura are available to assist you with your home search so don’t hesitate to contact them.
Kate & Tony work with both Sellers and Buyers and would be happy to work with you!
Why do some homes sell quickly while others do not? The 3 New Albany homes pictured above went into contract in 2 – 20 days. Every homeowner thinks their home is “special” – obviously these buyers agreed. Sometimes it’s luck, but it’s becoming clearer and clearer to us that luck is a very small piece of the puzzle. When we meet with sellers, we used to ask “do you want honest or brutally honest?” We don’t do that anymore – every seller needs to hear brutally honest and then follow the brutally honest advice we offer. That’s why these three homes sold as quickly as they did.
What did these Sellers do that others didn’t? The Sellers involved had their homes in not good, but perfect condition. They have updated finishes with a neutral décor that appeals to the widest possible audience. They worked with us or our stager to stage their homes to showcase the home’s strengths and downplay the weaknesses. And here is where the most important part of brutal comes in … they priced their home in front of the market in order to be the next home sold. In any given price range in New Albany right now, an average of 1 – 2 homes sells per month. IF there are 10 homes to choose from, the best way to be the one chosen is to be the best house, best décor, and best possible price.
No one would like homes to sell for higher prices than us, but if you aren’t going to get the price you would like, you ought to at least get it sold quickly. To discuss a pricing and marketing strategy to get your home sold quickly, call us at 614-939-1234 or email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org today.
The number of single family homes for sale in New Albany, OH reached a new low in February falling 34% from the same time in 2009. There are currently 168 homes for sale in New Albany Plain Local School District versus 207 in February, 2010 and 256 in February, 2009. The following neighborhoods have reduced inventories from the same time 2009. Some declines are more significant than others.
New Albany Homes For Sale Feb 2011, 2010 & 2009
Does a low inventory make it a good time to sell your home?
The answer is “Yes”. The timing of when to put your home on the market is a common question. The spring market is approaching and traditionally we see more buyers during March – June than we do at any other time of the year. There are always buyers looking for great homes in a great communities and New Albany has both! Contact email@example.com to confidentially discuss placing your home on the market this spring and to address any questions you may have about market trends in your specific neighborhood.
Stay informed by subscribing to our monthly marketing report from Altos Research.
I recently read a blog article by Linda Craft, a member of our CKG Coaching Network, that really resonated with me. I want to share a few of the high points. Home buyers shop for a home differently than most sellers think. Our Greater Columbus real estate market tends to favor buyers. As a result, today’s Buyers are looking to eliminate houses they view instead of choose them.
Eliminate a Home versus Choose a Home
Today’s buyer has many choices of homes to choose from and has the ability to preview as many as their time allows. Using the internet, buyers can preview and “eliminate” hundreds of homes for sale. As they view these homes, they are looking for reasons to eliminate it from their list. The reasons are varied – they may think it needs too much work, is too small, don’t like the color it’s painted, etc. The reality is that the house may be a good fit for them and the reason they choose to eliminate it from the list could be easily rectified.
So What Are Buyers of New Albany Homes Looking For?
Today’s Buyer will continue their search for the “perfect” house – the one they don’t need to do anything to but move right in. They prefer updated finishes in the kitchen, baths, and choice of home hardware. They prefer neutral décor, brightly lit and uncluttered rooms.
When preparing to list a home, Kate & Tony provide Sellers with a complimentary consultation with a professional stager to help make the home “buyer ready.” We want to give buyers looking at your home a reason to choose and not eliminate. To discuss preparing your home for in more detail, just contact Kate & Tony Thomas, your New Albany real estate experts at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Three Key Metrics All Positive
A look at a few key metrics tell the story. New Albany real estate is on the rebound. While first portion of 2010 was driven by tax incentives and first time home buyers, we really just “borrowed” future sales from July and Aug to hit the June 30th deadline. We were really pretty flat through mid 3rd Quarter 2010. Then we had a good finish and pushed ahead of 2009 in these important areas:
Traffic & Sales…Up
In 2010, 302 homes closed in New Albany vs 272 the previous year.
Median Sale Price …Up
The median sales price for homes sold in New Albany increaded from $283,000 in 2009 to $308,000 in 2010.
Median Days on Market…Down
The median home in New Albany was on the market for 88 days in 2010 – in 2009, it was on the market 104 days.
So what’s all this mean to me?
Well if you are a Buyer trying to time the market (if you can do this, let me and my financial advisor know asap) we may well be seeing the bottom. If you are a Seller, you may be encouraged that the worst may be behind us. In any event, if you want to buy or sell a New Albany home, now is the time and Kate & Tony are the ones to help. Let us show you how Kate & Tony’s service and results make them the market leaders in New Albany Real estate.
P.S. You can also just search the MLS yourself to see how your home compares…
Tax Time Approaches!
I have committed to getting our income tax information organized and to the accountant before Tony and I leave for a short trip to Florida on February 24th! This is a full 6 weeks ahead of when I typically have it ready – if you aren’t good at math, I normally deliver our information to our tax preparer around April 10th and hope he has time to complete it before the 15th!
Charitable Donation Valuation Guides
The New Albany Chamber of Commerce included a Charitable Donations Valuation Guide in their last newsletter. It was a good reminder that I need to calculate the value of the clothing and household items that we’ve donated over the past year. I tend to stick to a very conservative estimate to avoid instigating an audit. However, the tax benefit is valuable and well deserved so I maintain good records and take photographs as well.
For clothing and household items, I use the Salvation Army Valuation Guide. It shows a low to high range. There are lots of other sources – just google “charitable donation valuation guide”. I’ll let you know if I am successful in getting everything done by the 24th! Wish me luck!