Housing Market Expected to “Spring Forward”

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Just like our clocks this weekend in the majority of the country, the housing market will soon “spring forward!” Similar to tension in a spring, the lack of inventory available for sale in the market right now is what is holding back the market.

Many potential sellers believe that waiting until Spring is in their best interest, and traditionally they would have been right.

Buyer demand has seasonality to it, which usually falls off in the winter months, especially in areas of the country impacted by arctic temperatures and conditions.

That hasn’t happened this year.

Demand for housing has remained strong as mortgage rates have remained near historic lows.

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently reported that the top 10 datessellers listed their homes in 2016 all fell in April, May or June.

Those who act quickly and list now could benefit greatly from additional exposure to buyers prior to a flood of more competition coming to market in the next few months.

Bottom Line

If you are planning on selling your home in 2017, meet with a local real estate professional to evaluate the opportunities in your market.

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First Comes Love… Then Comes Mortgage?

According to the National Association of REALTORS most recent Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, married couples once again dominated the first-time homebuyer statistics in 2016 at 58% of all buyers. It is no surprise that having two incomes to save for down payments and contribute to monthly housing costs makes buying a home more attainable.

But, many couples are also deciding to buy a home before spending what would be a down payment on a wedding, as unmarried couples made up 14% of all first-time buyers last year.

If you’re single, don’t fret! Single women made up 18% of first-time buyers in 2016, while single men accounted for 8% of buyers. One recent article pointed to a sense of responsibility and commitment that drives many single women to want to own their home, rather than rent.

Here is the breakdown of all first-time homebuyers in 2016 by percentage of all buyers, income, and age:

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January 2017 Housing Report: 4 Things to Know

Home sales finished strong in December, helping make 2016 the best year for U.S. home sales since the recession, according to the January 2017 RE/MAX National Housing Report, an analysis of MLS data from 53 metro areas. In fact, home sales in 2016 were the highest in the housing report’s eight-year history. Here are key points from January’s report:

1. Homes are still selling fast

In December, homes spent an average of 62 days on the market. That’s the shortest time of any December in the report’s history.

2. Prices are rising

The median sales price of a home sold in December was $216,000. That was nearly 5 percent higher than the median sales price in December 2015.

3. Inventory continues to shrink

The inventory of homes for sale dropped nearly 18 percent between last December and December 2015, continuing a year-long streak of double-digit declines. Given the current pace of home sales, the inventory equals 4.2 months of sales. To put that in context, a supply of six months is considered a balanced market between buyers and sellers. In December, 47 of the 53 metro areas surveyed reported a supply of less than 6.0 months. That’s usually considered a seller’s market.

4. Slightly fewer transactions occurred

The overall average number of home sales fell 1.8 percent compared to December 2015. However, almost half of the 53 metro areas showed an increase in sales year-over-year. Growth in markets across the country was in the double digits. Home sales in the Wilmington/Dover, Delaware market shot up by about 21 percent. Sales in Honolulu, Hawaii grew by 19.7 percent and sales in Augusta, Maine, rose by about 16 percent.

What’s the upshot of all this research? “Much like 2015, we saw a mostly healthy housing market in 2016 that posted steady growth in sales and prices,” said Dave Liniger, RE/MAX CEO, chairman of the board and co-founder. “We’re back to pre-recession levels in many markets, with 2017 forecast to be another solid year. We’ll have to wait and see what impact rising interest rates will have.” In December, the Federal Reserve raised interest rates for only the second time since 2006.

Dig into the details of the January 2017 RE/MAX National Housing Report in the infographic below. You can also read more on the RE/MAX Newsroom.

Easy And Inexpensive Updates For Your Virginia Beach Home

Putting your house on the market soon? No nibbles on your already-listed Virginia Beach home? Whatever your reason, simple updates to both the interior and exterior of the house may be just what you need.

Some of these suggestions you may have seen before and some may be new to you, but any and all of them will add color, interest, and value to your house.

  • Remember curb appeal: Refurbish, repaint, or replace the garage door or the front door of your Virginia Beach home. They’re one of the first things potential buyers notice. Spruce up the entrance with colorful potted plants and a door wreath. Keep shrubs trimmed and walkways cleared. If you can’t afford the daunting task of painting your entire house, painting just the trim will still make a big difference when it comes to curb appeal.
  • Assess your floors: If you have hardwood flooring, it’s worth the investment to have them refinished. Carpets should be shampooed – and replaced if they are stained or look worn. Think, too, about removing or repositioning area rugs.
  • Brighten the walls of your Virginia Beach home: If you’re going to repaint, think about doing one accent wall in a different color or texture.  Wallpaper is making a comeback and can add interest and color to any room.
  • Update fixtures and lighting: Keep an eye out for sales at home improvement stores and replace outdated lighting, plumbing, and hardware fixtures. Simple replacement of lighting, fixtures, and knobs in the bathroom or kitchen can update the entire look of the room. You can find many modern (and discounted) brand name fixtures online at eBay or Overstock.com. Did you know you can also update a lampshade or dated chandelier by spray painting it?
  • Give your kitchen a fresh look: Add beadboard as an unusual back splash, paint or stain cabinet doors, or add molding to the cabinets for a finished look. Find and install interesting or modern cabinet hardware for a new appearance. You can even paint your laminate countertop with a new product from Rustoleum.

And as an added bonus, whatever project you choose to undertake will most likely help you keep at least one of your resolutions to save money, keep active, quit smoking, or learn something new!

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April Partida is a Professional, Experienced and Results Oriented, Top Virginia Beach VA Realtor committed to meeting your needs.

April has distinguished herself as a leader in the Virginia Beach Virginia real estate market. April assists buyers looking for Virginia Beach VA real estate for sale and aggressively markets Virginia Beach homes for sale. April is also a Short Sales and Foreclosures Resource Specialist (SFR). Avoid foreclosure and short sale expert, committed to helping families in financial hardship find options to foreclosure.

You can reach April at 757-227-1777 or by email, april@remaxvb.com.  

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