The Simple Truths of Real Estate: Part 3

This is the last of our three-part series called the Simple Truths of Real Estate. Just like in life, there are some things in real estate that are always true; no matter the geography or the market condition. To recap…

Truth#1:  It doesn’t matter what the neighbors’ home sold for in the past

Home values are dynamic. They rise and fall with market conditions, just like a company stock on an exchange. What a house was worth five years ago, last month or even last week has no bearing on the value of a house today. This can be a difficult pill to swallow.

Keys to Your Home

Truth #2:  A home is worth what a ready, willing and able buyer will pay for it. 

What matters is what a buyer thinks it’s worth — and what a buyer will offer on a property.  Also, if the buyer requires financing, whether a lender will approve a loan at that amount.

House Values

Truth #3:  Home improvements will not make a home value increase in an amount equal to or greater than what was paid for the improvements.

A corollary to the third law of real estate is that money spent on maintaining a home adds zero to the home’s value.

The Skinny on Home Improvements

So, you are thinking of investing is a home improvement project and you want to get the best return for the amount invested where should you spend your money?  Think about the kitchen and bathrooms. Kitchen and bath improvements tend to have higher rates of payback than others.  It is rare; however, that the improvement will add equal or more value to a home than what it cost.

Home Improvements

What if My Home Improvement Doesn’t Add Value?

One of the questions that I receive quite often from homeowners is, “Should I do a home improvement if it doesn’t add value.”  No one wants to decrease the value of their home, but owning a home is not just about increasing the value of a home it is about enjoying your home.  My advice, if you are going to use and enjoy your home improvement then you should do it.

Someone Really Likes Airplanes

What About Home Maintenance?

Cleaning the gutters, having the HVAC services twice a year, fixing the roof doesn’t increase the value of your home.  It means that you are a good and conscientious homeowner, but it doesn’t increase the value of your home.

Sure, the fact the water heater, air conditioner, and roof are newish will likely appeal to some buyers. That might well be what triggers their decision to buy your home versus another one, but they don’t make the home intrinsically more valuable.

Does it suck to dump $3,000 into an air conditioning repair on a home you’re not even going to live in? You bet it does. But try selling a home without air conditioning in places it gets over 80 degrees. Good luck selling a home anywhere without a water heater or a roof.

If fundamental repairs are needed, the owner is just going to have to suck it up and make them and not expect to recoup any of that money — or be prepared to discount the list price to compensate.

Time for a New A/C Unit!

About Log Pond Realty

Home is where your story begins. Home is where hopes and dreams are born, memories are made, and lives are lived. We would love the opportunity to assist you in writing your new story.

We service the Triangle region of North Carolina including Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Holly Springs, Morrisville, Fuquay-Varina, Durham, Chapel Hill, Wake Forest, and Garner.

Phone 919.589.3576 | Email at inquiries@logpondrealty.com   

The Simple Truths of Real Estate: Part 2

This is the 2nd in our three-part series called the Simple Truths of Real Estate. Just like in life, there are some things in real estate that are always true; no matter the geography or the market condition.

Truth #1:  It doesn’t matter what the neighbors’ home sold for in the past

Home values are dynamic. They rise and fall with market conditions, just like a company stock on an exchange. What a house was worth five years ago, last month or even last week has no bearing on the value of a house today. This can be a difficult pill to swallow.

Truth #2:  A home is worth what a ready, willing and able buyer will pay for it. 

There are many sources that can provide an estimate of the value of your home:
1) various automated valuation prices from the national real estate sites or
2) have requested a home appraisal from a real estate appraiser or a
3) market assessment from a real estate agent
The truth is that all of these are estimates. If you ask 5 real estate agents for a valuation, chances are you will get 5 different prices. The same is you hire five separate appraisals or go on-line and request a valuation from five separate websites, chances are you are going to receive five separate valuations.

Selling a Home in 2019

 

So What is the Truth?

In short, it doesn’t matter what the homeowners think their home is worth. And it certainly doesn’t matter what the agent or owner wishes the home was worth.

Automated valuations are fun to play with and are reasonable ways to look at pricing trends, but they should never be relied on to price a home (the AVM providers will even tell you this if you’ll listen to them).

What matters is what a buyer thinks it’s worth — and what a buyer will offer on a property.  Also, if the buyer requires financing, whether a lender will approve a loan at that amount.

Making Your House Standout

A Real-World Example

Listed a ranch home in Apex a few years ago in an established neighborhood.  We received multiple offers, one of which being $13,000 above asking, all cash, no inspections, 7-day close.  In this case, we had a buyer that was willing to pay considerably over asking to be in their desired neighborhood and home. 

Wrapping Up

If you are thinking of selling, it is critical that you get multiple valuation estimates.  Shop around.  Meet with multiple agents that have successfully sold a home in your market.  Ask how they determined the valuation and what steps they will follow to market your home to potential buyers. 

Pricing is Key When Trying to Attract Homebuyers

 

About Log Pond Realty

Home is where your story begins. Home is where hopes and dreams are born, memories are made, and lives are lived. We would love the opportunity to assist you in writing your new story.

We service the Triangle region of North Carolina including Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Holly Springs, Morrisville, Fuquay-Varina, Durham, Chapel Hill, Wake Forest, and Garner.

Phone 919.589.3576 | Email at inquiries@logpondrealty.com 

August Events Around the Triangle

Triangle residents of all walks of life love the local festivals and events available here year-round! Whether you’re looking to connect with neighbors, try tasty cuisine, hear live music or shop for original artwork, you’re in luck!

Here are a few events coming up in August that you should definitely put on your calendar!

Moore Square Grand Opening Celebration

August 3 ~ 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Moore Square Park
226 East Martin Street
Check out live music, a playground for kids, a movie, and more!
Additionally, the house at 226 East Martin will be the Moore Square Visitor’s center.

Welcome to Moore Square

Beer, Bourbon & BBQ Festival

August 2-3
Don’t miss the two-day Beer, Bourbon and BBQ Festival at Cary’s Koka Booth Amphitheatre. Admission gets you a souvenir sampling glass so you can enjoy an all-you-care-to-taste sampling of beer and bourbon, plus enjoy delicious southern fare and all-day live music.

Beer, Bourbon& BBQ

Fishing for Beginners

August 3 ~ 10:00-11:30 AM
Harris Lake County Park
The program will cover fishing basics such as how to prepare a rod and reel, bait a hook, cast your line and how to handle a fish. Instruction will be followed by an opportunity to fish in the pond. Fishing poles and bait will be provided, or you may bring your own.
Free for ages 7 and up; advance online registration is required for all participants. 

Summer Daze Music Festival Vol. 2

August 17
Celebrate summer at the second annual Summer Daze Music Festival at Coastal Credit Union Midtown Park in North Hills. Bring your friends to this celebration of music, local businesses, culture, and summer fun! 

Summer Daze

Packapalooza

August 24
This North Carolina State University’s Wolfpack Welcome Week block party event draws more than 80,000 attendees! The free and open-to-the-public event features more than 300 vendor booths lining Hillsborough St., along with food, games, arts and crafts, a water slide (bring your bathing suit!), visual and performing arts and more. 

Lazy Daze Arts & Crafts Festival

August 24-25
This beloved Cary festival has grown to two days, featuring more than 300 artists from 16 states! There will be multiple stages of live music, a beer garden and plenty of food trucks to keep everyone happy. It’s a wonderful event to enjoy with family and friends of all ages!

Lazy Daze Festival

Please let us know if you go to one of these events or if we’ve missed something special going on around town! Connect with us on social media or you can email us at inquiries@logpondrealty.com

About Log Pond Realty

Home is where your story begins. Home is where hopes and dreams are born, memories are made, and lives are lived. We would love the opportunity to assist you in writing your new story.

We service the Triangle region of North Carolina including Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Holly Springs, Morrisville, Fuquay-Varina, Durham, Chapel Hill, Wake Forest, and Garner. Phone 919.589.3576 | Email at inquiries@logpondrealty.com     

Quick Tips to Sell Your Home Faster

Homes sales are slowing!  More homes are on the market.  Competition for buyers is increasing. What can you do to help your home sell faster? Here are a couple of quick tips to get your home sold more quickly.

Make Buyers Feel at Home

Declutter your home! Pack away all personal items like pictures, awards, and sentimental belongings. Make them feel like they belong in this house! Once the house has been decluttered, keep it organized! Before any showings, pick up toys, make the bed, and put away clean dishes.  See more tips to get your home ready to sell.  

Home Staging

Home staging is basically cleaning your home and rearranging the furniture (or renting furniture if it’s empty) so your home looks like a showroom. A professional home stager sees your home from a buyer’s perspective and understands how to highlight its strengths and soften its flaws.

A Well Staged Home

Professional Photography

Did you know that 92 percent of homebuyers (according to realtor.org) use the Internet as part of their home search?  Also, the average homebuyer spends an average of 10 seconds viewing a listing on sites like Zillow, Trulia, and Realtor.com!! Homes that use professional photography also sell 32 times faster! With more homes on the market and homes staying on the market longer, it is critical that your home stand out above the competition.

Promote Your House Yourself

As listing agents, we do everything from videos, social media posts to yard signs and printed brochures (and several more things) to get the word out about one of our listings.  Sometimes, the best leads come right from our home sellers. We recommend that our clients also get the word out by posting on their social media accounts to family and friends.  You never know what friend of a friend or distant relative may be looking to buy. The more people who know about your sale, the likelier you are to find someone who is interested, and that’s vital when you’re figuring how to sell your home fast.

Promote Your House Sale, Too.

Price It Right

More inventory coming into the market guarantees there will be some competition. You want to make sure your home is noticed. The key to selling your house in 2019 is ensuring it is priced to sell.  Pricing is as much of an art as a science sometimes. It’s not just about what you need financially, but what the market will handle and how much value your home—and your neighborhood—has.

Also, take into consideration the upgrades you’ve made to the home and its features. While you probably won’t get a 100% return on your investment for renovations, they’ll likely affect how much your house is worth. That’s a lot to consider—which is why the most important thing about pricing is to work with your real estate agent and trust their advice. This is one of the most important ways their expertise will help you sell your home fast.  

Home Pricing is Critical

About Log Pond Realty

Home is where your story begins. Home is where hopes and dreams are born, memories are made, and lives are lived. We would love the opportunity to assist you in writing your new story.

We service the Triangle region of North Carolina including Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Holly Springs, Morrisville, Fuquay-Varina, Durham, Chapel Hill, Wake Forest, and Garner.

Phone 919.589.3576 | Email at inquiries@logpondrealty.com   

 

Sources: 

Shocking Stats About the Importance of Photography in Real Estate:  RIS Media Selling Your Home Faster:  Keeping Current Matters    

COMING SOON: Meticulous Ranch in Cary!!

Coming Soon:  301 Wax Myrtle Court, Cary, 27513

If you are looking for a well-maintained ranch style home in Cary this might be the one!  Located just off SW Cary Parkway, this home offers 3 bedrooms,  2 baths in an open floor plan.  Convenient to everything that Cary has to offer including shopping, restaurants & great recreational activities.

Check out our Video Tour!

Stop by our open house on Saturday, July 20th from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM.

This one is not to be missed!

About Log Pond Realty

Home is where your story begins. Home is where hopes and dreams are born, memories are made, and lives are lived. We would love the opportunity to assist you in writing your new story.

We service the Triangle region of North Carolina including Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Holly Springs, Morrisville, Fuquay-Varina, Durham, Chapel Hill, Wake Forest, and Garner.

Contact Us

Phone:  919.589.3576
Email:  inquiries@logpondrealty.com 

The Simple Truths of Real Estate: Part 1

There are certain things in life that are always true. It always rains the day that you forget your umbrella. The sun rises in the east and sets in the west. Every day. The New England Patriots win the AFC East every year. Sorry New York Jets fans.

Just like in life, there are some things in real estate that are always true; no matter the geography or the market condition. Beginning this week, we will look at a few simple truths of real estate.

It doesn’t matter what the neighbors’ home sold for in the past

Home values are dynamic. They rise and fall with market conditions, just like a company stock on an exchange. What a house was worth five years ago, last month or even last week has no bearing on the value of a house today. This can be a difficult pill to swallow.

If you didn’t sell your home two years ago or even last year when the market was at it’s highest, there is nothing that you can do about it now. Thinking, “I shoulda sold last year” or “I coulda gotten more money for my house” is a waste of energy. As I always say to my kids, “with a woulda, a coulda and a shoulda and a dollar, you still can’t buy a cup of coffee at Starbucks!

Or more simply put, “you can’t go back in time, so stop worrying about it.”

 

Home Prices are Dynamic

How to Maximize the Value of Your Home

Even if you didn’t sell when the market was at it’s highest, there are some things that you can do today to maximize the value of your home. Here are some simple steps:

  1. Catch up on any deferred maintenance around the house. Guys, its time to pull out that “honey do” list and get caught up on some of those projects you’ve been delaying around the house.
  2. Make sure the major systems; HVAC, electrical, plumbing, etc. are in good working order.
  3. Curb appeal counts. Keep things clean and tidy.  Plant some flowers in the front years. Cut back the hedges. Rake up the yard. Remember, you don’t have a second chance to make a first impression.
  4. If your house is living in the ’90s, it may be time for an update. Focus on your kitchens & baths: These are the areas of your home that will generate the most return. You can always change a kitchen, but you can’t pick up a property and move it.
  5. Work with an agent that understands your neighborhood to determine the best way to market your home.

About Log Pond Realty

Home is where your story begins. Home is where hopes and dreams are born, memories are made, and lives are lived. We would love the opportunity to assist you in writing your new story.

We service the Triangle region of North Carolina including Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Holly Springs, Morrisville, Fuquay-Varina, Durham, Chapel Hill, Wake Forest, and Garner.

Phone – 919.589.3576
Email – inquiries@logpondrealty.com 

Why Are There So Few Houses for Sale?

Homebuyer demand is near an all-time high, but why are there so few houses for sale?

The answer could be that we are in the “homebody era”.

What is the “Homebody Era”?

Homeowners are reluctant to sell, preferring to live in their current home rather than looking to either “step-up” or “downsize”.  This means that there are fewer homes for sale and could result in a housing shortage for years to come. Historically, the average American lived in their home for an average of five years.  In 2008 & 2009, during the height of the mortgage crisis, that number had increased to an average of seven years.  By May of this year, that number had increased to 11.3 years!

Why Aren’t Homeowners Selling?

Two powerful forces are likely to crimp housing supply in the years ahead, according to a recent article in Business Wire. The first is the reluctance of many homeowners to trade historically cheap mortgages for pricier ones when they move. And the second is the tendency for more seniors to age in place.

Interest Rates

Mortgage interest rates still remain highly affordable, and even showed a recent dip. The average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 4.07 for May, down from 4.59 a year earlier.  But that’s still higher than lows seen during the housing slump and recovery. The average annual rate hit a trough of 3.65 in 2016, barely beating a previous record of 3.66 set in 2012. This suggests homeowners will feel even more pressure to hang onto their homes in the years ahead, rather than sell and buy a new one using a mortgage with higher rates.

I’m Just Going to Stay Here

The growing tendency of seniors to choose to age in place is a second force that is likely to curtail inventory in the years ahead.  Improvements in health care and technology have made aging in place easier which means fewer homes on the market.

What Can Be Done?

Many industry experts are calling for more home construction and changes to zoning laws to allow more homes to be built and allow for multi-family homes to be constructed.  This has prompted concerns that builders will focus more on luxury or higher-priced communities rather than on affordable housing options. This is already the case in the Triangle.  Many builders are constructing “zero lot line” communities with larger homes on smaller lots.  In downtown Raleigh and Durham, there has been an explosion of high-end condo projects.

 

About Log Pond Realty

Home is where your story begins. Home is where hopes and dreams are born, memories are made, and lives are lived. We would love the opportunity to assist you in writing your new story.

We service the Triangle region of North Carolina including Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Holly Springs, Morrisville, Fuquay-Varina, Durham, Chapel Hill, Wake Forest, and Garner.

Phone 919.589.3576 | Email at inquiries@logpondrealty.com 

Business Wire, June 20, 2019.

Triangle Market Stats Q1 2019

https://youtu.be/D4CtyzDi_5U
Triangle Market Report Q1 2019

Q1 2019 is in the books but the real estate market in the Triangle NC region is looking like a repeat of 2018. Many of the trends in Q1 mimicked those from the same period last year. 

What increased? Inventory growth, sale prices & days on market, while inventory within the resale market < $300,000 decreased. Historically March is the hottest month of the year in the resale market and this was true in 2019 in the below $300,000 market. 

While new home construction has helped relieve the lack of inventory in other submarkets, due to the cost of land and development costs, there are very few new construction options in the $300,000 and under market across the Triangle. 

Quarter1 also saw a welcome decrease in mortgage rates. Current buyers have a stable mortgage rate environment and this is projected to continue throughout 2019.

Spring Home Checklist

Spring arrives on March 20th and will last for 92 days, 17 hours and 55 minutes…so, what are you waiting for? Let the home projects begin.

 

~Tori Toth

You may not have noticed but spring has arrived!  The days are definitely getting longer and as I write this article the temperature here in Raleigh is 80 degrees!  If you haven’t already done so, now is a great time to plan your spring home projects.   

Many homeowners believe spring maintenance is all about the cleaning. Certainly, a good cleaning of the exterior and interior of the home is a good idea, but maintaining the systems, appliances and home structure is a must!  Here are some spring maintenance checklist items.  

Now is the Time for Spring Home Projects

Outdoor Home Projects

  • Clean gutters and downspouts.   
  • Siding: Clean siding with a pressure washer to keep mold from growing. Check all wood surfaces for weathering and paint failure. If the wood is showing through, and the immediate area and apply a primer coat before painting. If the paint is peeling, scrape loose paint and sand smooth before painting.
  • Roof: Inspect roof surface flashing, eaves, and soffits. Perform a thorough cleaning. Check flashings around all surface projections and sidewalls. 
  • Inspect driveways and paths.  
  • Air Conditioning. Just as you readied your furnace for fall, now is the time to make sure that air conditioning units are in good working order for the warmer months ahead. 
  • Check sprinkler and irrigation systems.  
  • Fertilize/Seed Lawn 
  • Mulch Beds 
  • Plant Spring Flowers in Pots (Front Entry/Entertaining Area) 
  • Organize Garage 
  • Clean Patio Furniture 
  • Clean Grill 

Indoor Home Projects 

Here are some ideas to refresh the inside of your home:   

  • Clean Light Fixtures 
  • Touch Up Paint + Baseboards 
  • Wash Windows/Blinds 
  • Wash/Maintain All Appliances 
  • Clean Out Closets (Seasonal Clothes) 
  • Clean Behind & Underneath ALL Furniture 
  • Add Seasonal Décor 
  • Remove Christmas Decorations:  Just noticed that we still have a couple of Christmas decoration scattered around the house!   
Taking Care of Your Home

How to Decide?

It can be difficult to prioritize your home projects.  After all, the list above is pretty extensive and spring is a great time to spend time with the family and check out all of the great things to do around the Triangle area!  Here are a couple suggestions to assist you with your spring home projects.  Start by handling any projects that can cause major damage like a leaky roof, or projects that could affect your safety in the home. Look to upgrade items that can help you save money, like replacing windows. Complete low-cost projects that make an impact, for instance, new paint before tackling the bigger projects.

Home Sweet Home

About Log Pond Realty

Home is where your story begins. Home is where hopes and dreams are born, memories are made, and lives are lived. We would love the opportunity to assist you in writing your new story.

We can be reached via phone at 919.589.3576 or via email at inquiries@logpondrealty.com 

We service the Triangle region of North Carolina including Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Holly Springs, Morrisville, Fuquay-Varina, Durham, Chapel Hill, Wake Forest, and Garner.

Sources

Family Handyman Home Checklist 

Tori Toth Spring Home Goals 

Bob Vila Spring Home Checklist 

Home Advisor Home Checklist   

Wake County Real Estate Update – February 2019

The February real estate numbers are in for Wake County. January and February started off very slowly and most real estate followers feared the coming of a real estate slowdown.

How did we do in February? Find out here!

https://youtu.be/R8oS9i0MX_U

About Log Pond Realty

Home is where your story begins. Home is where hopes and dreams are born, memories are made, and lives are lived. We would love the opportunity to assist you in writing your new story.

We can be reached via phone at 919.589.3576 or via email at inquiries@logpondrealty.com 

We service the Triangle region of North Carolina including Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Holly Springs, Morrisville, Fuquay-Varina, Durham, Chapel Hill, Wake Forest, and Garner.