Monthly Archives: December 2022

Thinking About Retirement in 2023?

If you’re spending time with family over the holidays, you may be discussing plans for the new year that include retirement. If so. one of your goals could be selling your house and finding a home that more closely fits your needs.

Fortunately, you may be in a better position to make a move than you realize. Here are a few things to think about when making your decision.

Consider How Long You’ve Been in Your Home

From 1985 to 2008, the average length of time homeowners typically stayed in their homes was only six years. But according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), that number is rising today, meaning many homeowners are living in their houses even longer (see graph below):

Planning to Retire? It Could Be Time To Make a Move. | MyKCM

When you live in a home for a significant period of time, it’s natural for you to experience a number of changes in your life while you’re in that house. Children grow up and move out. You may develop physical issues that make going up to the second floor bedroom challenging. As these life changes happen, your needs do, too. If your current home no longer meets them, you may have better options waiting for you.

Consider the Equity You’ve Gained

Additionally, if you’ve been in your home for more than a few years and have been paying your mortgage regularly, you’ve likely built up significant equity that can fuel your next move. That’s because the longer you’ve been in your home, the more likely it’s grown in value due to home price appreciation. Data from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) illustrates that point (see graph below):

Planning to Retire? It Could Be Time To Make a Move. | MyKCM

While home price growth varies by state and local area, the national average shows the typical homeowner who’s been in their house for five years saw it increase in value by over 50%. And the average homeowner who’s owned their home for 30 years saw it almost triple in value over that time.

Consider Your Retirement Goals

Whether you’re looking to downsize, relocate to that “someday” destination, or move closer to loved ones, your equity can help you achieve your homeownership goals. NAR shares that for recent home sellers, the primary reason to move was to be closer to loved ones. Retirement also played a large role for those moving greater distances.

If retirement is in your plans for 2023, we can help you review your options. If you’re looking to relocate, we have contacts literally all over the US and Canada and as far away as Israel, because of our involvement with the Tom Ferry organization — our industry’s leading education and training group.

We’re grateful for the number of clients/friends, who we worked with in 2022. Because of our successful partnerships, Mari Sennott Plus ends the year as one of the leading realtors in Today Real Estate and throughout Cape Cod.

We’re looking forward to assisting more individuals, couples, and families attain their homeownership goals in 2023. Let’s start by connecting at 508-360-5664 or msennott@todayrealestate.com. Talk soon…

Happy New Year…

Mari and Hank

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Is 2023 Your Year?

As we prepare for the holidays, many of us are also thinking about the year that’s ending and making plans for the one ahead.

If 2022 was the year you made a change, congratulations! Whether upsizing, downsizing, or moving to that “someday” neighborhood, it no doubt wasn’t easy due to limited inventory, prices, and stress producing bidding wars. But, if the pandemic taught us anything, it’s that life goes on.

We certainly didn’t start 2022 with the goal of leaving our home of 28 years. But, as the year progressed we realized that we were the people who we frequently talked about. We had a house that had become too big; was getting increasingly expensive to maintain, and didn’t fit our lifestyle. It was time to downsize.

Making the long story short, we used the equity in our home to help finance the purchase our new — and smaller — one. We then marketed our old house putting us in the position of knowing where we were going, which is a common concern expressed by homeowners, who want to sell.

If you sat on the sidelines this year waiting for prices to drop (or go even higher), you should know that — as predicted — prices are stabilizing. According to the latest report from the Cape Cod and Islands Association of Realtors, the median sales price of a single family home last month is just 1.4% higher than November 2021.

BTW…The median sales price of a condominium for the same time period is up 32.3%!

Last month, sellers received 95.9% of original list price. YTD that figure is 100.5%. This is good news for buyers and maybe not so good for sellers, who were hoping to receive the same crazy price that their neighbor got earlier this year. Anecdotally, price reductions, which had been rare, are now on the rise.

A home priced right will still sell quickly. We just put two under contract. And equity will put homeowners in a favorable position to make their next move.

With family often together over these next few weeks, please don’t hesitate to contact us, if you discuss making a change. We’d be happy to provide the most current information available to help you make a decision. You reach us at 508-360-5664 or msennott@todayrealestate.com.

As the holidays approach, we can’t help but think of the clients/friends who we worked with in 2022 and the hundreds we’ve gotten to know over the last 22 years. We hope everyone enjoys this special time of year in the place that they now call “home.”

Best wishes,

Mari and Hank

What Can You Expected for Home Prices?

If you’re thinking about buying or selling a home soon, you may have questions about what’s happening with prices right as the market cools. The simple answer is that the real experts don’t expect prices to come crashing down, but the level of home price moderation will depend on factors like supply and demand in each local market.

That means, moving forward, home price appreciation will continue to vary by location, with more significant changes happening in overheated areas. Here’s a quick snapshot of what the experts are saying:

Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at realtor.comsays: “The major question on the minds of homeowners and aspiring buyers alike is what will happen to home prices. . . Soaring prices were propelled by all-time low mortgage rates which are a thing of the past. As a result, home price growth is expected to continue slowing, dipping below its pre-pandemic average to 5.4% for 2023, as a whole.

According to Mark Fleming, Chief Economist at First American: “House price appreciation has slowed in all 50 markets we track, but the deceleration is generally more dramatic in areas that experienced the strongest peak appreciation rates.”

Taylor Marr, Deputy Chief Economist at Redfin, says: For those bearish folks eagerly awaiting the home price crash, you’ll have to keep waiting. As much as demand is pulling back supply, it is also reducing downward pressure on prices in the short run.”

On Cape Cod, the median sales price for a single family home is up 1.4% comparing this November to a year ago. Prices were up 12% comparing November 2021 to November 2020! Year to date median sales prices are still up almost 22%, but the trend is stabilizing.

What Does This Mean for You?

If you’ve been playing the “waiting game” for prices to continue to increase (sellers) or decrease (buyers), time may be running out.

Potential sellers should know that Open Houses aren’t the social events that they were and, in general, bidding wars are a thing of the past. The number of days a property stays on the market is increasing, too, as are price reductions as sellers try to get the price their neighbors or friends got six months ago.

Buyers, who are hoping for prices to drop, are losing out. Some have told us that they’re waiting for interest rates to drop. They have been ticking back and the difference between 5.25% and 5.50% may not be as significant as you think, when you remember your mortgage is for 30 years and refinancing is always an option. (We’re never going to see 3% again…)

If you don’t have a relationship with a reputable lender, we can recommend several whom we have worked with over the years. It’s important to have that pre-approval letter and know how changes in interest rates impact what you can afford.

If 2023 is going to be you year and you have questions about what’s happening with home prices, let’s connect at 508-360-5664 or msennott@todayrealestate.com so we can share with you the latest information on what’s happening.

Talk soon…

Mari and Hank

How You Can Use Your Home’s Equity

If you’re currently a homeowner, odds are your equity has grown significantly over the last few years as home prices skyrocketed and you made your monthly mortgage payments. Home equity builds over time and can help you achieve certain goals. According to the latest Equity Insights Report from CoreLogicthe average borrower with a home loan has almost $300,000 in equity right now.

As you weigh your options during these somewhat confusing economic times, it’s important to understand your assets and how you can leverage them. As real estate professionals, we can be a good source of information to help you understand how much home equity you have and suggest some of the ways you can use it.  Here are a few examples.

1. Buy a Home That Fits Your Needs

If you no longer have the space you need, it might be time to move into a larger home. Or you may have too much space and need something smaller. No matter the situation, consider using your equity to power a move into a home that fits your changing lifestyle.

If you want to upgrade your house, you can put your equity toward a down payment on the home of your dreams. And if you’re planning to downsize, you may be surprised that your equity may cover some of the cost of your next home, if not all.

Earlier this year, we used the equity in our home to put us in the position to make a successful offer on our new home without including a home sale contingency. We then marketed our house after our offer was accepted.

If you’re concerned about where you will move when you successfully market your home, your equity allows you to answer that question before listing your property.

2. Reinvest in Your Current House

According to a recent survey from Point, 39% of homeowners would invest in home improvement projects if they chose to access their equity. This is a great option if you want to change some things about your living space, but you aren’t quite ready to make a move.

Home improvement projects allow you to customize your home to suit your needs and sense of style. Just remember to think ahead with any updates you make, as some renovations add more value to your home and are more likely to appeal to future buyers than others.

For example, a report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows refinishing or replacing wood flooring has a high cost recovery. We can advise you on which projects to invest in to get the greatest return on your investment when you sell.

3. Pursue Your Personal Goals

In addition to making a move or updating your house, home equity can also help you achieve the life goals you’ve dreamed of. That could mean investing in a new business venture, retiring or downsizing, buying a vacation home, or funding an education.

While you shouldn’t use your equity for unnecessary spending, leveraging it to start a business or putting it toward education costs can help you achieve other personal goals.

Bottom Line

Your equity can be a game changer. If you’re unsure how much equity you have in your home and how might you best use it, let’s connect at 508-360-5664 or msennott@todayrealestate.com. We’re happy to help.

Mari and Hank