January 2012 - Closing the book on 2011!
This month I thought it would be an appropriate time to share with you how our local real estate market has performed over the last decade as we head into the new year. We are very blessed in this area as we've had a variety of positive market forces that have attributed to protecting our real estate investments by buoying our economy. These include the Haynesville Shale, the addition of the cyber command at BAFB, and mortgage interest rates reaching an all time low. Our market in 2002 had a total of 4102 units sold. this number continued to rise unitl it reached its peak in 2006 of 5184 units sold. Since 2006, the total units sold has declined incrementally every year (with the exception of 2010 when it rose by 17 units sold over 2009) culminating in only 3778 units actually selling in 2011. Now at face value it would be assumed that there should have been downward compression on pricing due to these stats, however, that has not been the case. Our market has risen, on average, 7% annually over the last decade. In 2002, our market's median home price was $89,900. the median home price since then has continued to rise every year with the exception of 2011 when it remined at $155,000 which is the same median home price as in 2010. Our biggest price jump occurred in 2004 when our median home price rose almost 15% in one year as it increased from $107,000 to $122,900 from 2004 to 2005. Since 2006 when the amount of actual sales started to decline we have continued to experience appreciation at annual rate of 4.7% which is not bad when contrasted with the return you would have received on your money from the stock market or other investments during the same period. The question that I had to ask myself after seeing the aforementioned statistics is, "Why would the median home price rise as the amount of transactions declined?" I think the answer to that is mulitfaceted: 1) our market has not been over-built in comparison to a city like Dallas where the median home price is much lower, 2) distressed sales in our market in 2011 accounted for only around 15% of all units sold which is low when compared to the national rate of 28%, according to RealtyTrac, 3) interest rates being at a historic low have increased the amount buyers have been able to afford. With all of that said, if you are interested in finding out how your specific neighborhood has fared or a neighborhood that you might be possibly targeting to move into this year has fared then give me a call & I'll run the numbers for you. I also want you to know that one of the main ways that I build my business is through referrals so if you know of anyone that might need expert real estate representation in the near future then please forward me their contact info & I will give them a call to see if I can help them meet their goals. I hope you've enjoyed this info & wish you and your family a prosperous 2012!!
September 2011 - The Anatomy of a Short Sale
This month I want to go over the basics of a short sale with you, as these transactions, while numerous in our market, can be the most complex types for both buyers & sellers. How prevalent are they in our market? Currently 5% of the residential properties under contract in the Shreveport-Bossier market area are of the short sale variety. In the last 30 days, 1% of the actual closed transactions that have taken place have been short sales. As you can see by the two figures, itappears to be no problem to find a ready, willing, & able buyer for this type of transaction but to actually get them approved by the lienholder(s) & closed is another matter entirely. So let's dig deeper...a short sale would be defined as a transaction where a seller, who is typically behind on his/her monthly mortgage payment, petitions the lienholder(s) to accept an offer from a buyer for less than what is owed on the property. This can be a beneficial transaction to all parties involved. The benefits to the lender are numerous & include: not having to go through a lengthy foreclosure process, not having to takepossession of the property (which can be costly), & the monetary savings of getting a non-performing asset off of their books. The benefit to the buyer is that you generally end up with a home that was priced under market value thereby realizing "instant equity" when you close. The seller benefits in a variety of ways: 1) their credit score is salvaged by avoiding a foreclosure, 2) the amount that the bank loses on the loan is generally forgiven, 3) in some types of short sales the seller can receive up to $3000 for moving expenses, 4) the seller does not have to report the bank's loss from the short sale as income on their tax return as would be required with a loss that the bank realizes on a foreclosure, & 5) it's an honorable way to handle what is generally a bad situation. The Process - On a simplistic level, the seller will list their property with a contingency that final approval of any offer would have to be obtained from the lienholder(s) before a closing takes place. The seller would then get together a short sale packet that would be sent to the lender which would include a hardship letter, last 30 days paycheck stubs, a financial worksheet,two years tax returns, an offer to purchase from a buyer, a preliminary HUD, & a prequalification or proof of funds from the purchaser. The lender would then order either an appraisal or what is called a BPO or broker price opinion to give them an estimate of value for the property. This opinion of value is the key to a successful short sale. If the valuation comes within 10% or so of the contract price then the lienholder(s) will in most instances approve the deal. The time involved for this process to come to its end can be anywhere from 90 days to12 months in some transactions. The variation in time can generally attributed to the competence of the lienholder(s) short sale department (I smiled as I typed this as "competent" and "short sale department" are rarely used in the same sentence). There are also increasing levels of complexity in short sales as some can have IRS liens, multiple mortgages, & judgements attached the property which all have to be negotiated out prior to a closing taking place. The short sale can be further complicated if a bankruptcy has been filed. As I am expounding on this subject, it has dawned on me that I could write a novel on all of the ins & outs in a short transaction from each angle & my intent is certainly not to get too technical with this article. So with that said, I am available to help you if you feel like your property might be a candidate for a short sale. Also, if you are planning on purchasing property in the near future then I want to hear from you so please take a moment to send me an email or give me a call so I can find out your goals & create a plan to help you find an awesome deal on your purchase.
July 2011 - Distressed sales & How You Can Benefit
I feel as though this issue is top of mind for most people who are considering buying or selling in the current market so I thought I would shed some light on how our market stacks up on a distressed sale level. By distressed sale, I mean that the property sold either as a foreclosure or a short sale. Over the past 30 days, our market has had 320 property transfers that have been reported in our local MLS system. Out of those 320 sales, 50 have been distressed sales. This means that 15.6% of our market is currently made of up of this type of transaction. According to Campbell's HousePulse Tracking Survey, distressed sales nationwide make up nearly half of the transactions on average. This shows that our local market has been well-insulated from a majority of the bad economic news that has been happening across the country. Now, to go a little deeper into the numbers, the majority of our distressed sales are taking place in the price point of $100k and below and so, as an investor or a buyer in the market, that is where the best opportunities for a great deal appear to lie. In my opinion, some of the best deals available are there courtesy of our government in the form of HUD & Fannie Mae listings as these made up, by far, the majority of the 50 distressed sale transactions that took place. With that said, if you are currently in the market for a home & want to visit with me about how to find & pursue these types of properties then feel free to click the contact me button on the top right hand side of the page & I will be happy to advise you on the best way to proceed. I appreciate you taking the time to read my newsletter & look forward to providing you with more inside knowledge of the Shreveport-Bossier market area next month. As always, if there is anything that I can do to assist you with any of your real estate needs, feel free to contact me.
Selling Your Home >Storage Priorities
No matter how much storage space a home provides, most people feel that it's never enough. Buyers typically place storage space high on their list of priorities for a new home. Sellers must often face the minor indignity of having prospective buyers open all of their closets to determine the size and capacity of each one.
Even an enormous closet looks small if it is cluttered. Your closets should be as organized as possible while your property is on the market. If you have excess belongings stuffed in your closets, hold a yard sale, rent a storage unit temporarily, or make a tax deductible donation to a local charity. When you finish cleaning and organizing all of your closets, move on to the other storage areas. Your home's storage spaces will look more impressive if they are neat and well-organized.
Realty Executives SB
4012 Benton Road, Suite 110
Bossier City, LA 71111
*Recognized by SB magazine as one of the top agents in Northwest Louisiana
*Team Lytle was recognized as the top producing team for Realty Executives SB-Bossier for the calendar year 2012.
*Member of the 100% Club with Realty Executives.
*Honored as a member of the Executive Club within Realty Executives.
*Recognized by Realty Executives in Bossier City as its top individual agent for the calendar years 2010 & 2011.
*Expertise in residential, commercial, land, foreclosures, short sales, & new construction.
*Member of the National Association of Realtors & the Northwest Louisiana Association of Realtors.
*Owner of a real estate investment company.
I have been a member of the Shreveport/Bossier community since 1980 & have built a reputation over the last 8 years as a hard-working, knowledgeable agent throughout Northwest Louisiana. If you are a homeowner preparing to sell, I'll create a customized marketing plan that will enable you to achieve the goals that you have set. On the other hand, if you are thinking of buying, I'll introduce you to my exclusive buyer program which is designed to identify "secret" properties at wholesale prices. I look forward to helping you achieve your goals!
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