People who want to stay safe and shelter in place, but also want to buy a home, may be a bit confused about what their next steps should be. That’s great news because there is so much you should be doing and can be doing – from home. I tell buyers all of the time that looking at homes in person, is really the only fun part of the home buying process. Some people might disagree, but really if you consider the steps – you will probably agree. Some people stress about spending money. Not everyone enjoys a new time-consuming task to fit into an already filled day. I have also yet to meet someone who enjoys filling out paperwork.
There is paperwork aplenty. Back in the day, we printed everything and I used to include myself as one of those tree killers. Nowadays, so much of what I do is online, there is no guilt anymore. My buyers can buy a home completely paperless if they choose, but the paperwork still exists, now as online forms, and there is plenty of it. There are many forms that are required to be filled out in order to buy a home. All of that can take place on-line. All of it takes time. All of it can be done from the comfort of your own couch. Continue reading
I hope you and your families are in good health and good spirits as we collectively fight COVID-19. I have already connected with some of you and will continue to do so. Please reach out to me as well if you want to talk about real estate, are on the lookout for a supply you can’t find, looking for a new show to stream or are just bored and want someone different to talk to. Working from home can be very isolating, trust me I get it. I can certainly provide some tricks and tips to help you schedule your day a bit.
Austin Homes Sales are Strong
The Austin real estate market is strong, and that includes all of Central Texas. Yes, we have changed some business practices, but new homes are still coming on the market daily, houses are still being shown (with some precautions) and sold. Closings still happening virtually, with limited attendance and even taking place outside. Continue reading
The law of supply and demand continues to ring true in central Texas, as the greater Austin area prices are still on the rise. The first Central Texas Housing Market Report of the year shows steady gains in both home sales and prices across the five-county Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), according to the Austin Board of REALTORS® (ABoR).
Austin – Round Rock Real Estate Market Statistics for January 2020
In the Austin-Round Rock MSA, residential home sales in January rose 8.5% to 1,947 home sales, with a 9.6% sales dollar volume increase to $726,157,216. During the same period, new listings decreased 14.3% to 2,723 listings, and active listings decreased 24.1% to 4,889 listings. However, pending sales jumped 13.1% to 2,956 pending sales. Monthly housing inventory declined 0.6 months year over year to 1.6 months of inventory. Continue reading
The Austin Board of REALTORS® has reported that Central Texas REALTORS® sold more homes in 2019, than any other year on record. The December and Year-End Central Texas Housing Report echos the findings noting 33,084 in home sales and home sales and $13,158,737,333 in sales volume.
Austin area closes decade with record-breaking $13B in home sales: Single-family home sales increased by 84% since 2010
For data lovers out there, here are some numbers to know whether you are moving to Austin or within Austin. The Central Texas real estate market is headed for record-breaking sales this year. November home sales throughout the five-county Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) pushed the year-to-date total to 30,561 sales, which is approximately 300 homes shy of last year’s total sales volume.
From the Austin Board of Realtors – Each county experienced a double-digit increase in home sales; the city of Austin slightly rose 4.5% to 670 sales, according to the Austin Board of REALTORS® latest Central Texas Housing Market Report. Continue reading
The market is on the move with no signs of slowing down as we settle into 2016 and look at Austin home sales. The Fed did raise interest rates as expected. With the economy well on the mend, additional upticks are on the horizon as interest rates slowly drift to normal levels. The interest rate always affects the housing market because it taps into buying power. Interest is part of the monthly mortgage payment. Higher rates mean a higher payment, which affects debt-to-income ratio.
Austin Home Sales Predictions 2016 and Housing Demand
Historically, rising interest rates generally decrease home prices because buyers can afford less; but it can also create an immediate demand. Buyers want to lock into mortgages when they know rates will be increasing.
In Austin, the demand for housing was already high without the rate increase. I expect increasing rates will only create more motivation to buy a home.
Realtor.com says Austin-Round Rock will be the fifth most sought out city for 25- to 34-year-olds looking to purchase a home.
As long as the demand is high and inventory is low, housing prices in Austin will continue to rise. There is currently about 2.6 months of single-family home inventory in Austin for sale.
HGTV is powerful. I cannot even begin to tell you how many homeowners I speak to who got an idea to attempt a do-it-yourself project as a result of watching a home makeover show. If you are chuckling on the inside, it may be because you are one of them. I use the word ‘attempt’, because while these shows inspire and educate, they also tend to make projects seem simpler than they are.
Reality TV Shows vs. Remodeling in the Real World
Remember, it’s an 10 hour project shown in 30 minutes. TV shows have the power to edit and often have a team completing the handiwork behind the scenes. It’s a reality show, just like any other. I laugh on the inside and try not to show my angst on the outside when I go on a listing appointment with those who lost their drive on a remodel. The results range from unfinished faux painted walls, tile put in place that was never grouted and crown molding that doesn’t completely go around the ceiling. All of these unfinished projects are going to affect the sales price of your home.
It is easier to sell a dated home that is fully functioning and completed, than a home that seems to stop mid sentence. To a buyer, the project needs to be finished. I often have to change the perception of the seller, to see these things with buyers’ eyes, because after a while the seller doesn’t see the projects anymore. They have been living with them for so long; they just tend to blend into the background.
Many home supply stores offer classes on do-it-yourself projects. I often recommend someone take one before making a decision to start a project. We are all good at something, but certainly not good at everything. Have a reality check with yourself when you are watching those reality shows. Get a real education on what’s involved with a do-it-yourself project, before you begin one.