Fast-paced real estate market hitting 10-year highs

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

Have you noticed it lately? A bunch of real estate signs in people’s front yards, a good many of them with SOLD sign toppers on them. That’s because people are buying and selling houses – more Bucks County real estate settled in June than in any month in the past 10 YEARS; 801 units to be exact, at an average sale price of $336,000. That pace looks to continue as Pending Sales in June – an indicator of upcoming trends – are up 18% over June of 2014, down ever so slightly over May’s pending sales, which were up 20% over last year.

While the number of transactions has been increasing at a pretty fast clip, prices are not! The average sale price has remained essentially flat for the past two years. If you’re thinking of buying or selling a property in the near future, hopefully these numbers demonstrate that there’s confidence in the market and things have stabilized.

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Waiting to buy a home may cost you in more ways than one

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

If you’re considering a move, whether it’s into your first home or a larger one, waiting to do so could end up costing you thousands of dollars. With most economists in agreement that interest rates will most likely rise by the end of the year, the first way you end up behind the eight ball is with a higher interest rate for your mortgage.

Consider this – if rates move from their current 4% up to 5%, a $300,000 mortgage jumps $177/month from $1434 to $1611 for principal and interest. Or, that payment of $1434 now only buys you $267,000 worth of mortgage money – $33,000 less, which puts you in a different price category.

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Your home’s first impression begins in the car

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

That’s right – the first impression buyers have of your home occurs as they pull up to the curb, which is why we can’t say it often enough. Stand in the street and take a critical view of your home’s exterior because buyers can’t see how great it is inside if they never get out of the car.

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Shredding event in Newtown May 2nd

Berkshire Hathaway Homeservices Fox & Roach, Newtown Home Marketing Center is sponsoring a free shredding event Saturday, May 2nd, from 10:00am until noon at their offices located at 677 S. State Street, Newtown (corner of Newtown Bypass and State Street). Join them that day to dispose of your sensitive papers. An industrial shredding truck will be on site and refreshments will be served.

For more information contact Kathleen Layton at 215-860-3233.

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Why selling your home yourself is a BAD idea

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

Probably for the same reason they say that attorneys who represent themselves have fools for clients – and attorneys are educated about the process and presumably, understand the law! Below are some reasons that becoming a “For Sale By Owner” may not be the best idea:

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Expect growth in the housing market

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

Momentum in the housing market is expected to continue into 2015, driven by low interest rates, tightened inventory, declining foreclosures, normalizing price appreciation and an improving economy. Nationally, new home sales have lagged behind the recovery, with barely an increase over 2013 and the share of first time homebuyers fell to the lowest level in over 20 years, according to the National Association of Realtors. This is largely due to the decrease in homes for sale and tightening lender standards, which are expected to ease ever-so-slightly this year.

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Some common seller positions when selling and why you shouldn’t take them

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

  • “I need my house to sell for “X” so I can get into my next home.” Unfortunately, no one but you cares. Harsh, but think about it – would YOU pay more than market value to help out a seller you don’t even know? Enough said.
  • “I have “X” into this house and need it to sell for “Y.” See #1. While it’s true that you get a portion of some improvements back, it doesn’t hold true for basic, maintenance items, if you’ve over-improved for the neighborhood, or if you’ve customized the home and narrowed the appeal.

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Bucks County real estate market update

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

Just like the weather, the real estate market is local, and national and regional statistics don’t always tell you the full story of what’s happening right here in Bucks County. Many factors influence how the market is trending, including consumer sentiment and confidence, jobs and the local economy. The statistics for year-to-date and year-over-year are very encouraging for Bucks County and it seems apparent that the positive trend will slowly continue.

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Emotional ‘traps’ of selling a home

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

“Follow your focus, not your feelings” is a great mantra, both in life and when selling your home. If you avoid these common emotional “traps” and keep the big picture of why you’re selling in mind, you’ll have a much easier time of it.

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The reality of a dream home

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

Everyone has their idea of a “dream” home. The problem occurs when it has no basis in reality. Budget constraints, differing priorities, limited inventory and unrealistic expectations can all influence the home buying experience. While buying a new home is never without its stressors, there ARE steps you can take to make sure your experience is as fun as it should be.

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