Our mobile site is optimized for smaller screens.

TRY IT NO THANKS
  • Boston Condos
+ Advanced Search

      sell

      Compass Contemplations for Friday

      DID YOU KNOW? Construction on U.S. new houses fell more than 9% in September, but a recent surge in permits suggests the decline in so-called housing starts is just a brief pause in a real estate market reinvigorated by lower mortgage rates. Housing starts slid to an annual rate of 1.26 million last month from a revised 1.39 million in August. (Marketwatch)

      DID YOU KNOW? Of the 618,000 “millennial millionaires” - those currently aged 23 - 37 years old with a net worth of over $1 million - in the USA, 44% are concentrated in California. California also has the highest percentage of business owners (23%) and the highest percentage of real estate investors. New York ranks No. 2, home to 14% of the millennial millionaire population. (CNBC)

      DID YOU KNOW? Hedge funder Ray Dalio - speaking at the IMF and World Bank annual meetings - said the global business cycle is in a “great sag” and the world’s economy holds at least two parallels to the 1930s. Here are some of his thoughts: 
      * Monetary policy, and especially interest rate reductions, were unlikely to offer much stimulus.
      * The world was also experiencing the biggest wealth gap since the 1930s and that was creating political stress. In the USA the top one-tenth of 1% of the population has a net worth that is approximately equal to the bottom 90%.
      * Like the 1930s, we have a rising power challenging an existing world power in the form of China-U.S. challenges.
      * There were four types of wars to watch for — trade, technology, currency and geopolitical.  (CNBC)

      DID YOU KNOW? Total national real estate website visits - not unique visitors - in the month of September looked like this: 
      Zillow:                  179 million
      Redfin:                 46,5 million
      Compass:             3,543 million
      Coldwell Banker:  2,9 million
      Sothebys Realty:  2,773 million
      Corcoran:             922,151
      Elliman:                390,000
      Thanks to Jeremy Schwartz from Compass SEO Analytics who provided this information.

      Compass Contemplations for Sunday

       

      DID YOU KNOW? According to a 2018 report from the Pew Research Center, 19% of American adults live in “upper-income households.” The median income of that group was $187,872 in 2016. The share of U.S. adults considered upper-class varies depending on where you live, Pew noted: In affluent metropolitan areas, it’s much higher than 19%. The metropolitan areas with the largest shares of adults in upper-income households are mostly in the coastal areas of the Northeast and California and tend to be in high-tech corridors, such as Boston-Cambridge-Newton, MA-NH, or in financial and commercial centers, such as Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT. The metro with the highest share was San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA, where 32% of adults were considered upper-income. (CNBC)

       

      "Narratives that can periodically surge into epidemics are capable of changing the economy’s direction or of turning small booms and recessions into big ones. The probability that a recession will come soon — or be severe when it does — depends in part on the state of ever-changing popular narratives about the economy. These are stories that provide a framework for piecing together the seemingly random bits of information that one picks up from friends, the news or social media." - Robert Schiller, NYT 

       

      DID YOU KNOW? Here are some interesting stats from the NAPLES, Florida area via NABOR (Naples Area Board of Realtors) (Thanks to Yasmin Saad).

      * Collier County Florida 2017 Population: 372,880

      * # of licensed brokers/agents who are members:  Brokers: 689, Agents: 6,375

      * 96% of users logged in at least once to the SunshineMLS in the last 12 months.

      * # of homes sold in the last 12 months (buyer or seller side):  6,574 Single Family homes closed had a Naples agent on the Listing Side

      914 Land sales closed that had a Naples agent on the Listing Side

      * The total number of sales in the last 12 months: 14,130 closed.

      Everybody Calm Down! This Is NOT 2008

      Everybody Calm Down! This Is NOT 2008 | MyKCM

      Last week realtor.com released the results of a survey that produced three major revelations:

      1. 53% of home purchasers (first-time and repeat buyers) currently in the market believe a recession will occur this year or next.
      2. 57% believe the next recession will be as bad or worse than 2008.
      3. 55% said they would cancel plans to move if a recession occurred.

      Since we are currently experiencing the longest-ever economic expansion in American history, there is reason to believe a recession could occur in the not-too-distant future. And, it does make sense that buyers and sellers remember the horrors of 2008 when they hear the word “recession.”

      Ali Wolf, Director of Economic Research at the real estate consulting firm Meyers Research, addressed this point in a recent interview:

      “With people having PTSD from the last time, they’re still afraid of buying at the wrong time.”

      Most experts, however, believe if there is a recession, it will not resemble 2008. This housing market is in no way the same as it was just over a decade ago.

      Zillow Economist, Jeff Tucker, explained the difference in a recent article, Recessions Typically Have Limited Effect on the Housing Market:

      “As we look ahead to the next recession, it’s important to recognize how unusual the conditions were that caused the last one, and what’s different about the housing market today. Rather than abundant homes, we have a shortage of new home supply. Rather than risky borrowers taking on adjustable-rate mortgages, we have buyers with sterling credit scores taking out predictable 30-year fixed-rate mortgages. The housing market is simply much less risky than it was 15 years ago.”

      George Ratiu, Senior Economist at realtor.com, also weighed in on the subject:

      “This is going to be a much shorter recession than the last one, I don’t think the next recession will be a repeat of 2008…The housing market is in a better position.”

      In the past 23 years, there have been two national recessions – the dot-com crash in 2001 and the Great Recession in 2008. It is true that home values fell 19.7% during the 2008 recession, which was caused by a mortgage meltdown that heavily impacted the housing market. However, while stock prices fell almost 25% in 2001, home values appreciated 6.6%. The triggers of the next recession will more closely mirror those from 2001 – not those from 2008.

      Bottom Line

      No one can accurately predict when the next recession will occur, but expecting one could possibly take place in the next 18-24 months is understandable. It is, however, important to realize that the impact of a recession on the housing market will in no way resemble 2008.

       

       

      5 Reasons to Sell This Fall

      5 Reasons to Sell This Fall | MyKCM

      Below are 5 compelling reasons listing your home for sale this fall makes sense.

      1. Demand Is Strong

      The latest Buyer Traffic Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing, and able to purchase…and are in the market right now. More often than not, in many areas of the country, multiple buyers are competing with each other to buy the same home.

      Take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market.

      2. There Is Less Competition Now

      Housing inventory is still under the 6-month supply that is needed for a normal market. This means that in the majority of the country, there are not enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers.

      Historically, a homeowner would stay an average of six years in his or her home. Since 2011, that number has hovered between nine and ten years. There is a pent-up desire for many homeowners to move as they were unable to sell over the last few years due to a negative equity situation. As home values continue to appreciate, more and more homeowners will be given the freedom to move.

      Many homeowners were reluctant to list their homes over the last couple years, for fear that they would not find a home to move to. That is all changing now as more homes come to market at the higher end. The choices buyers have will continue to increase. Don’t wait until additional inventory comes to market before you decide to sell.

      3. The Process Will Be Quicker

      Today’s competitive environment has forced buyers to do all they can to stand out from the crowd, including getting pre-approved for their mortgage financing. This makes the entire selling process much faster and simpler, as buyers know exactly what they can afford before shopping for a home. According to Ellie Mae’s latest Origination Insights Report, the time needed to close a loan is 43 days.

      4. There Will Never Be a Better Time to Move Up

      If your next move will be into a premium or luxury home, now is the time to move up. There is currently ample inventory for sale at higher price ranges. This means if you’re planning on selling a starter or trade-up home and moving into your dream home, you’ll be able to do that in the luxury or premium market.

      According to CoreLogic, prices are projected to appreciate by 5.2% over the next year. If you’re moving to a higher-priced home, it will wind up costing you more in raw dollars (both in down payment and mortgage) if you wait.

      5. It’s Time to Move on with Your Life

      Look at the reason you decided to sell in the first place and determine whether it is worth waiting. Is money more important than being with family? Is money more important than having the freedom to go on with your life the way you think you should?

      Only you know the answers to these questions. You have the power to take control of the situation by putting your home on the market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire.

      That is what is truly important.

       

      Top Priorities When Moving with Kids

      Top Priorities When Moving with Kids | MyKCM

      According to the Pew Research Center, around 37% of U.S students will be going back to school soon and the rest have already started the new academic year. With school-aged children in your home, buying or selling a house can take on a whole different approach when it comes to finding the right size, location, school district, and more.

      Recently, the 2019 Moving with Kids Report from the National Association of Realtors®(NAR) studied “the different purchasing habits as well as seller preferences during the home buying and selling process.” This is what they found:

      When Purchasing a Home

      The major difference between the homebuyers who have children and those who do not is the importance of the neighborhood. In fact, 53% said the quality of the school district is an important factor when purchasing a home, and 50% select neighborhoods by the convenience to the schools.

      Buyers with children also purchase larger, detached single-family homes with 4 bedrooms and 2 full bathrooms at approximately 2,110 square feet.

      Furthermore, 26% noted how childcare expenses delayed the home-buying process and forced additional compromises: 31% in the size of the home, 24% in the price, and 18% in the distance from work.

      When Selling a Home

      Of those polled, 23% of buyers with children sold their home “very urgently,” and 46% indicated “somewhat urgently, within a reasonable time frame.” Selling with urgency can pressure sellers to accept offers that are not in their favor. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR explains,

      “When buying or selling a home, exercising patience is beneficial, but in some cases – such as facing an upcoming school year or the outgrowing of a home – sellers find themselves rushed and forced to accept a less than ideal offer.”

      For sellers with children, 21% want a real estate professional to help them sell the home within a specific time frame, 20% at a competitive price, and 19% to market their home to potential buyers.

      Bottom Line

      Buying or selling a home can be driven by different priorities when you are also raising a family. If you’re a seller with children and looking to relocate, let’s get together to navigate the process in the most reasonable time frame for you and your family.

       

       

      The information contained, and the opinions expressed, in this article are not intended to be construed as investment advice. Keeping Current Matters, Inc. does not guarantee or warrant the accuracy or completeness of the information or opinions contained herein. Nothing herein should be construed as investment advice. You should always conduct your own research and due diligence and obtain professional advice before making any investment decision. Keeping Current Matters, Inc. will not be liable for any loss or damage caused by your reliance on the information or opinions contained herein.

      Why Now Is the Perfect Time to Sell Your House

      Why Now Is the Perfect Time to Sell Your House | MyKCM

      As a homeowner, it’s always tempting to dream about the next big project you’re going to tackle. The possibilities are endless. Should I renovate? Should I refinance? Should I stay? Should I move? The list goes on and on.

      In today’s housing market, it’s actually a great time to shift your thoughts toward selling your house and moving up into the home of your dreams. Here’s why:

      Inventory is on the rise, but there’s still an overall shortage of houses for sale (less than a 6-month supply found in a more normal market), so homes are going under contract quickly. In fact, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) Realtors® Confidence Index Survey reports that right now homes are only staying on the market for an average of 27 days. That’s less than one month, an even more accelerated pace from the 36-day trend we saw last spring.

      Why Now Is the Perfect Time to Sell Your House | MyKCM

      The same report also indicates there are more interested buyers than active sellers today, which is one of the big factors driving home prices higher.

      .Why Now Is the Perfect Time to Sell Your House | MyKCM

      Why Now Is the Perfect Time to Sell Your House | MyKCM

      This power combination provides an ideal environment for sellers aiming to close a quick sale and earn a big return as we wrap up the summer season.

      Bottom Line

      There’s still time to make a move before the school year starts and the fall weather sets in. Maybe it’s time to make a change. Let’s get together to determine if selling now is the right decision for your family.

       

      5 Tips to Help You Find the Accessible Home of Your Dreams

      Having trouble finding a home that fits your accessibility needs? You’re not alone. Homebuyers searching for accessible homes often find the process difficult and frustrating. However, these helpful home-buying tips can make locating your ideal home so much easier. Here’s where you should start when it comes to finding and buying a mobility-friendly home.

       

      Plan Your New-Home Checklist Now

       

      Searching for and buying a new home can be a hectic process. To keep essential tasks from getting lost in the shuffle, come up with a list of projects you need to complete to feel safe and comfortable in your new home. Be sure to put changing your locks at the top of that checklist so your new property will be secured from the start. Research top-quality locksmiths in and around your area. You can also use online resources to take care of other tasks around the home, such as hiring house cleaners or setting up necessary utilities.

       

      Make Organizing Finances a Top Priority

       

      Your new-home checklist should also include making financial accommodations to help you purchase your new home. This is a good time to meet with your financial advisor to go over any essential information that will be needed during the home-buying process. This is a step many buyers skip, but financial advisors can provide practical solutions to help you make the most of your home purchase. What’s more, advisors can often make securing home financing as stress-free as possible. That includes accounting for any additional expenses you may incur later, such as costs of accessibility renovations or other upgrades to your home.

       

      Start Your Search with a Real Estate Pro

       

      Many home-buying articles will advise you to begin your home search online, but this is another area where it pays to work with the pros. While that may work in many cases, homebuyers who are looking for specialty or luxury features in a home are better off contacting an experienced real estate professional. This is especially true when those specialty features include accommodations for accessibility. Finding a home with those features can be complicated, but a real estate company with experience in your desired area will be able to anticipate those complications and prepare solutions to offset them.

       

      Look for Stylish, But Safe, Accessibility Upgrades

       

      Your home should be safe and accessible, but that does not mean you have to sacrifice style and luxury. There are so many beautiful ways to incorporate accessibility into a home without those features being overtly obvious. French doors, for example, are a lovely option for wider doorways, while open floor plans can make moving around much easier. For larger homes with multiple floors, a custom elevator can improve your quality of life and add a touch of luxury as well. Your realtor can help you search for available local properties with these small touches so you can find a home that fits your needs and dreams.

       

      Wait Before Making Accessibility Changes on Your Own

       

      Once you and your realtor have put together a list of accommodations you need in a new home, your search should be much easier. However, you still may have trouble finding a property that completely fits with your needs. As you look at potential properties, keep in mind that you can always make renovations once you move in. Living in your home for a bit before you plan extensive upgrades will give you a better idea of what projects you need to make your home more comfortable. Plus, you can plan to employ a contractor to complete multiple jobs at once, rather than spacing them out over time.

       

      Mobility issues do not have to prevent you from finding the home of your dreams. There are plenty of homes with accessibility features on the market — you just need to know where to start to make finding a home that fits you a simple task. Consult an experienced realtor and use the tips above to take the guesswork out of finding an accessible home in your area. 

      The Death of the Vacant Listing?

       

      The Death Of The Vacant Listing?

      About fifteen years ago after attempting to sell a vacant, unfurnished loft, we broke down and took a trip to IKEA to buy a basic set of furniture to stage the property. Style-wise we kept everything mostly white with some black accents, simply to help prospective buyers visually 'scale' the home.

       

      We created an appealing living room and dining area, added some cowhide rugs and bought a Le Corbusier chaise to 'up' the look a bit. It worked! The loft sold rather swiftly after that. Later we added staging 'artwork' - framed blown-up photos that I'd personally taken that were abstracted enough to potentially be 'real' art - as we found so many blank white walls looked cold and uninspired. We re-used that suite of staging items dozens of times afterward with great success. Flash forward and today, I cannot even imagine showing an unfurnished home ever again. It would be marketing suicide, especially on the high end. Professional staging has elevated this from my IKEA-fueled days to an entirely new level where buyers (even at the $20m+ level) are askiing to buy the staged homes fully furnished.

       

      I recall meeting with Rob Lehman about two years ago. He asked me what the one cost-distracting item was that was most critical to what we do and of course I answered STAGING. If we could stage all our listings, and offset the cost for the seller, I thought we'd have a winner.  At the time I envisioned a warehouse full of furniture, but of course that would have been unmanageable.  Of all the value-adds that we bring to the table, I truly believe that COMPASS CONCIERGE's role in providing us the ability to stage by financing the up-front cost is a game-changer for our industry. Anything that makes our role easier and takes away the stress of our clients is a certain winner.

       

      Furnishings not only help buyers scale a property: now, professional staging creates an aspiration lifestyle too. Competing against a staged property with an unfurnished property is almost a waste of time unless deep discounting or a super-hot sellers market is a consideration.

       

      Buyer Demand Surging as Spring Market Begins

      Buyer Demand Surging as Spring Market Begins | MyKCM

      Last fall, some predicted that the 2019 residential real estate market would be a disaster. There was even the belief that we might experience a housing crash like the one that occurred during the last decade.

      However, according to two separate reports*, buyer demand dramatically increased over the last three months, leading into this spring buyers’ market (the March data is not yet available).

      Both the ShowingTime Showing Index and the National Association of REALTORS Buyer Traffic Index show that buyer demand has increased in each of the last three months.

      Buyer Demand Surging as Spring Market Begins | MyKCM

      Why the increase in demand? Increased buying power.

      According to the National Association of Realtors’ Economists’ Outlook Blog, purchasing a home has become more affordable, which has led to increased demand.

      “Due to the combination of falling home prices and mortgage rates, the income needed to make an affordable mortgage payment (mortgage no more than 25% of income) on a median-priced home with 10% down payment and 30-year fixed rate mortgage decreased from $60,425 in June 2018 to $53,783 as of February 2019, and the difference of $6,642 represents a gain in buying power because one can afford a home purchase at a lower level of income.”

      Bottom Line

      It appears the spring buyers’ market is going to be much stronger than many had projected. Whether you are selling or buying, this is important news.

       

      *The methodology behind the indices:

      The ShowingTime Showing Index

      “The ShowingTime Showing Index® tracks the average number of buyer showings on active residential properties on a monthly basis, a highly reliable leading indicator of current and future demand trends.”

      The National Association of REALTORS® Buyer Traffic Index

      “In a monthly survey of REALTORS®, NAR asks respondents ‘Compared to the same month last year, how would you rate the past month’s traffic in neighborhood(s) or area(s) where you make most of your sales?’ NAR compiles the responses into an index, where an index above 50 indicates that more respondents reported “stronger” traffic than “weaker” traffic.”

      5 Reasons To Sell Your House This Spring!

      5 Reasons To Sell Your House This Spring! | MyKCM

      Here are five compelling reasons listing your home for sale this spring makes sense.

      1. Demand Is Strong

      The latest Buyer Traffic Index from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing, and able to purchase… and are in the market right now! More often than not, multiple buyers are competing with each other for the same home.

      Take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market.

      2. There Is Less Competition Now

      Housing inventory is still under the 6-month supply needed for a normal housing market. This means that, in most of the country, there are not enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers.

      Historically, the average number of years a homeowner stayed in his or her home was six, but that number has hovered between nine and ten years since 2011. Many homeowners have a pent-up desire to move, as they were unable to sell over the last few years due to a negative equity situation. As home values continue to appreciate, more and more homeowners are granted the freedom to move.

      Many homeowners were reluctant to list their home over the last couple of years for fear that they would not find a home to move in to. That is all changing now as more homes come to market at the higher end. The choices buyers have will continue to increase. Don’t wait until additional inventory comes to market before you to decide to sell.

      3. The Process Will Be Quicker

      Today’s competitive environment has forced buyers to do all they can to stand out from the crowd, including getting pre-approved for their mortgage financing. Buyers know exactly what they can afford before home shopping. This makes the entire selling process much faster and simpler. According to Ellie Mae’s latest Origination Insights Report, the time to close a loan has dropped to 47 days.

      4. There Will Never Be a Better Time to Move Up

      If your next move will be into a premium or luxury home, now is the time to move up! The inventory of homes for sale at these higher price ranges has created a buyer’s market. This means that if you are planning on selling a starter or trade-up home, it will sell quickly, AND you’ll be able to find a premium home to call your own!

      According to CoreLogic, prices are projected to appreciate by 4.6% over the next year. If you are moving to a higher-priced home, it will wind up costing you more in raw dollars (both in down payment and mortgage payment) if you wait.

      5. It’s Time to Move on With Your Life

      Look at the reason you decided to sell in the first place and determine whether it is worth waiting. Is money more important than being with family? Is money more important than your health? Is money more important than having the freedom to go on with your life the way you think you should?

      Only you know the answers to these questions. You have the power to take control of the situation by putting your home on the market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire.

      That is what is truly important.

      sign up RECEIVE THE LATEST LISTINGS & SAVE SEARCHES Already a member? Sign in here