Real estate news and tips for homeowners that are thinking about selling or refinancing.

Choosing the right Realtor to sell your home

Choosing the right Realtor to sell your home

If interested in selling your home, a great real estate broker will help you price your home at current market values, market your home using today’s top techniques, qualify potential buyers and expertly negotiate (and finalize) the transaction.

This top-notch Real estate negotiation service has tenured experience with past sales and can balance optimism with realism and honesty with tact.  You owe it to yourself to find the best possible real estate broker to help with the sale of your home.

Below you will find a list of “to do’s” when picking the right Broker to sell your home.

1)       Round up good prospects:  In order to identify a prospective realtor, ask friends or neighbors.  You can also browse the internet to find the brokerage which has a large presence in the local market.  Make certain to search for real estate professionals whose credentials match your particular needs.

2)      Ask tough questions:  Obtain a real estate professional that is familiar with your neighborhood.  Make certain that your prospective Realtor has constructive input about price and condition.  Be curious—what types of marketing efforts are used with the marketing or your home?  Make certain not to “fall for” the Realtor which promises the quickest sale for the best price.

3)      Make certain that your Realtor has “backup”:  It is essential that your Realtor has at least 1 assistant or a team of real estate professional in order to make certain that no potential purchasers are placed on the back burner when inquiring into the specifics of your home.

4)      Sign the right contract: Inquire with each prospect on how long the marketing contract for your home will last.  The slower the market, the longer the contract, typically.  A six month agreement is typical in today’s market.

Are you interested in selling your home or at least obtaining a free current market analysis?  If so, call me directly at 208-869-3469 . . .

Keys to Selling Your Home in Today’s Market

Keys to Selling Your Home in Today’s Market

Homes are being purchased—how are sellers doing it?

All homes are different, and there isn’t one simple strategy that works well for every home and is often used by the realtor tc mi to help their clients sell their homes fast. However, the real goal is to understand that today’s real estate market is cash driven and very competitive.  Home seller’s that understand the market and work with a well-qualified brokerage are the most likely to succeed with the successful sale of their home.

In March of 2012, nearly 1/3rd of all home sales were “cash” (the buyer was not dependent upon financing, the sale of their current residence, etc).  Instead, a cash buyer has the ability to close the transaction quickly instead of waiting for financing to be prepared or the sale of the existing residence.

There are 6 basic rules which typically provide success with the sale of a home:

1)       Curb Appeal:  The majority of home purchasers want a home that looks great from the outside.  It is a matter of perception since if the home looks good from the street then the potential buyer surmises that it most likely means the home is ready for a new occupant and does not need a lot of improvement.  Potential home purchasers tend to bypass a home that doesn’t appeal to them from the road—not even bothering to look inside. Use the services of power washing companies, who use high-pressure water spray to remove loose paint, mold, grime, dust, mud, chewing gum and dirt from surfaces. Visit their homepage to get the details.

2)      No Cluttter:  Home owners must allow potential buyers to view a clutter free home.  A clutter free home will present the interior space as “larger” and abolishes the need to get rid of “stuff” when in the midst of moving.  It is very wise to reduce the clutter prior to the home being placed onto the market. If you are still not sure of where you will be moving to, then consider hiring a storage service. You should be able to store most of your belongings there in the meantime, allowing potential buyers to visualize the home with the open space they will now fill with their things.

If you already know where you will be moving to once you sell the house you can hire commercial movers to take some of your things for you ahead of time. As previously mentioned, this will open up room for a potential buyer to visualize themselves in the space and what they can do with it. Once the deal has been settled the movers can take the rest of your things, and you can drive or fly over to your next home where the movers will deliver your belongings.

3)      Working condition:  The home’s systems being in great mechanical condition is a positive in today’s market since most distressed property cannot compete when it comes to the basics such as heating, air conditions, appliances, etc.  Homes that easily get through a home inspection are typically easier to financing and are generally more appealing to home purchasers which are afraid of future costs. Check any HVAC and electrical issues with

4)     Be ready to go: The last thing you want slowing down this process is you moving out of the property. There are a number of things you can do to prevent this, like start moving out ahead of time, you can hire long distance movers to help you in that regard. With people helping you move your possessions and difficult or heavy to move items, you should be able to expedite this process and be ready to go just fine.

5)      Seek Qualified Buyers:  Although cash transactions have increased, the majority of sales still require financing to be provided to the buyer for the successful sale of the home.  It is very, very frustrating to enter into a purchase and sale agreement with a home purchaser who ultimately is unable to obtain funds to purchase the home.  The home seller, in turn, has lost time on market (and potentially money) and has to start from scratch to locate an alternate purchaser.  It will be important to ensure that the buyer has a loan approval letter “in hand” prior to accepting an offer to purchase.  Lender approval letters are not binding but the document will at least show that the buyer did take the time to meet with a mortgage brokerage to gain knowledge of their financing capability.

6)      Distressed properties:  Approximately 30% of all home sales involve distressed property (short sales, foreclosed property/bank owned homes).  It will be important to evaluate the amount of distressed property and pricing in your vicinity so that your home can be priced appropriately.  Distressed property typically sells at a discount yet as mentioned previously, most distressed homes for sale require TLC.  Homes in good condition obtain higher purchase prices.

Boise Ranked #3 for top markets with rising list prices!

The spring real estate season is bringing an uptick of optimism.  The national median list price of homes for sale has increased 5.56% over the last year, according to  This “jump” brings the national median list price to the level it was 2 years ago.   Experts do note, however, that there is a large amount of homes which are being held back from the market by banks which may undermine the optimism.   However, the Greater Boise-Nampa Metro area currently ranks 3rd on the list.

The top 10 markets for rising list prices can be viewed below:


Location: Phoenix-Mesa, Ariz.

Year-over-year median list price increase (%)


Median list price



Location: Miami


Year-over-year median list price increase (%)


Median list price



Location: Boise-Nampa, Idaho


Year-over-year median list price increase (%)


Median list price



Location: Punta Gorda, Fla.


Year-over-year median list price increase (%)


Median list price



Location: Washington, D.C.-Md.-Va.-W.Va. (Md.)


Year-over-year median list price increase (%)


Median list price



Location:Washington, D.C.-Md.-Va.-W.Va. (D.C.)


Year-over-year median list price increase (%)


Median list price



Location: Santa Barbara-Santa Maria-Lompoc, Calif.


Year-over-year median list price increase (%)


Median list price



Location: Daytona Beach, Fla.


Year-over-year median list price increase (%)


Median list price



Location: West Palm Beach-Boca Raton, Fla.


Year-over-year median list price increase (%)


Median list price



Location: Naples, Fla.


Year-over-year median list price increase (%)


Median list price



Making your home “Market Ready”

Making your home “Market Ready”

Making an effort to clear out clutter to ensure that your home is as neat and tidy as possible before opening your door to potential home buyers is great advice when placing your home on the market.

A tidy home is “vital” when opening your home to potential buyers because most home buyers want to picture themselves someplace better, them sliding the door repair sliding you just got fixed and more beautiful than what they are currently living in now.  Buyers tend to want the perceived thought that if they move in the home it will still be organized, clean and attractive.  If a potential buyer walks into a cluttered home then that “feeling” will obviously not be felt.

Even if your home is in good structural and cosmetic condition yet still cluttered, potential home buyers will think that the home needs renovation which lowers the value of the home in the buyers mind.

I know, cleaning up isn’t always an easy task and parting with items that have an emotional value can be very difficult for a lot of people—me included. Most understand the need to de-clutter—it doesn’t cost much money yet does weigh on ones psyche. Most importantly, if you don’t have the time to clean up the property yourself, you can always hire a house cleaning service to do the job for you.

Unfortunately, packing personal belongings into boxes that remain in the home isn’t much a solution since most potential home buyers will assume that there is not enough space within the home upon viewing boxes sitting in the corners of rooms.  Placing boxes into closets isn’t ideal, either, since buyers want to know that there is plenty of storage space contained within the home.

Getting prepared to move is a perfect time to get rid of un-needed items.  The advantage of ridding yourself of items that collect dust is that you are going to spend less money for someone to move you and you are also going to spend less money on storage.  Just don’t expect to de-clutter over a weekend—it takes most homeowners weeks, if not months, to complete the de-cluttering task. Remember, one step at a time!

Be ruthless . . . if you’re unsure about an item, GET RID OF IT!

Default filings down by a third in Ada & Canyon Counties

Default filings down by a third in Ada & Canyon Counties

The local real estate market seems to be headed in the right direction in regard to stability.  The next 6 months will provide additional information on the direction that our market is headed yet the following information provides a “snap shot” of year to date activity.

Homeowner default rates on homes loans within Ada and Canyon counties will fall well short of 2010 levels.  Overall filings (the starting of the foreclosure process) are down 34 percent.

There were 228 default filings in November for Ada County, down from over 260 within the month of October. The monthly average of default filings for Ada County in 2011 is 265.  Total default filings for 2011 in Ada County were 2,918—down 34% from the previous year.

In Canyon County, however, default filings were up.  Last month there were 184—approximately 23 more default filings from the previous month.  The monthly default average for Canyon County is 176.  Through November, the total default filings for Canyon County were 1,944.

The most recent “high” for default filings in Ada and Canyon counties was in March of 2010.  Default filings, however, slowed as lien holders became concerned about the processing of foreclosure documents.  This prompted some lenders/services to revise their foreclosure processes.  As you most likely know, banks are now releasing their inventory (foreclosed homes) in a manner that does not depress the market further.

Most statisticians feel that an influx of bank owned property will hit the real estate market during the spring of 2012.  Default filings typically increase after the Winter Holiday Seasons, as well.

Bank owned listings dropped nearly 3 percent from October to November in Canyon and Ada Counties while short sales on the market are down 3 percent.

Principle Reductions for Underwater Borrowers on the Horizon?

A letter sent to the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s (FHFA) acting director Edward DeMarco by 21 member of the United States Congress urged this director to implement principle reductions on loans currently backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac—2 of the largest backers of mortgage securities.

The letter explains that the members of congress do not urge that the FHFA request principal reductions out of kindness to homeowners yet support principal reductions in order to save taxpayers money for any future losses (foreclosed homes).

Principle reductions are when the financing institution reduces the amount owed against the debt in order for the homeowner to not be “underwater”.   The purpose of principle reductions is to help those that are substantially underwater or owe much more than what the asset is worth.

17% of Fannie borrowers are underwater and 18% of Freddie borrowers are underwater.  This provides a great risk of eventual default by this particular group.

Loan modifications have not solved the problem since 44% of loans modified within the past 24 months are three months past due, according to a Freddie Mac cited letter:  “The performance of the mortgage modifications leaves much to be desired for homeowners, for the housing market and for taxpayers”.

The members of Congress which urged the principle reduction stated that the short term effects of principal reductions on the books may look grim yet the long term effects greatly outweigh the money lost if homes and property continue to default on a regular basis.

Questions about principle reductions?  Call me directly at 28-869-3469. –Matt

For complete funding solutions check out hard money lending new york.

Existing-Home Sales Up


Although the national median price of homes being purchase has decreased, existing homes that have been sold increased for the 4th straight month in November.


Purchases of town homes, condo’s, co-op’s and single family residences increased nearly 14% last month to a adjusted estimated of 4.97 million.  Since July, homes sales have increased by double digits.  Sales also rose w/in the month of October.


The following information provides more detailed information:


Seasonally adjusted annual rate 4.97 million
% change from Oct. 2010 +13.5%
% change from September 2011 +1.4%
National median price $162,500
% change from Oct. 2010 -4.7%
Unsold inventory (months’ supply) 8
Share of all-cash buyers 29%
Share of investor buyers 18%
Share of first-time buyers 34%
Share of distressed sales 28%


Purchasing a Home After a Short Sale or Foreclosure

Purchasing a Home After a Short Sale or Foreclosure

Many have questions regarding how long it takes to be eligible to purchase a home if  a foreclosure is currently on record or you have sold your home via the short sale route.  Below you will find detailed information to help shed light on the subject!

I can be reached directly at 208-869-3469 and am happy to answer any questions that you may have!

Recent Statistics Point to Real Estate Rebound

Recent Statistics Point to Real Estate Rebound

Numerous signals have showcased the potential fact that the real estate market is now on the rise, especially people looking for Maintenance Free Townhomes.  There has been a swing in regional real estate market improvements across the United States along with a 15% rise in housing starts in September, an increase in builder confidence and a surge in mortgage lending applications (people applying for credit to purchase a home).

Land for sale located within the Great Plains and include Iowa, Louisiana, Texas, Wyoming, Nebraska and the Dakota’s with Bismarck ND are showing the greatest amount of strength and are expecting to be the strongest market w/in the United States this coming year. Many people are looking to build beautiful luxury homes. Others just look for luxury homes for sale or luxury apartments for rent. In fact, Bismarck expects to see 5.6% increase in appreciation according to most statisticians.

Alternate markets expected to see the highest gains in appreciation include Washington DC, Honolulu, Fargo, Pittsburgh, Boston and Harrisburg/Carlisle.

Although the majority of real estate markets are not seeing substantial gains in appreciation, the markets contained within the United States won’t see values fall at rates seen w/in the past 3 years.   Even though the housing recovery is limited to a hand full of markets, the fact that some areas are seeing appreciation is encouraging for those in alternate real estate markets throughout the country.  Some would say that appreciation will begin to trickle down as time progresses.

Nevada, inland areas of California, Oregon and Washington State round of the weakest markets currently within the United States with Bakersfield, California  being the weakest due to a high amount of foreclosures in 2011 and projected foreclosures in 2012.

Friday: The Best day to Place Your Home on the Market

Friday:  The Best day to Place Your Home on the Market

For the best chance of selling your home, sellers should publicly list it on Friday’s–this according to a Seattle-based brokerage Redfin.

Upon evaluating 1.2 milling listing in 16 large markets within the United States the past 21 months, Redfin found that the homes listed on Friday were 12% more likely to obtain a buyer for the home and sell within 90 days.  Homes placed on the market on Thursday or Friday on average sold close to the current list price:  94.4% in comparison to 93.9% when homes are placed on the public market for sale on Sunday or Monday.  In a nut shell, this is a $1,000 difference in sales price when comparing to a $200,000 home.

Homes are 18.8% more likely to be toured by potential buyers when listed on Friday.  The least likely homes to be toured were, of course, made public on Sunday or Monday.

The theory behind this is that home buyers tend to view homes on Saturdays and Sundays.  Homes placed onto the market on Friday’s are the freshest in the buyers and their Realtors minds when planning for weekend viewings.  Realtors and buyers tend to sort potential homes to view by days on market in order to the have the best chance of getting a potentially great buy before other potential buyers have a chance.