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HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE 10.9.19

by Harry Salzman

October 8, 2019

 

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

         A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my Unique Brand of Personal Service, it is my desire to share current real estate issues that will help to make you a more successful and profitable buyer or seller.  

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HOUSING FORECAST IS BRIGHT…AND ESPECIALLY SO RIGHT HERE AT HOME…

I’m thrilled to tell you that once again in Colorado Springs, both the average and median sales prices are continuing their upward trend.   This is true for both single family/patio homes and condo/townhomes as you’ll see in the statistics below.

There have been national news reports saying that while housing is starting to “bounce back”, it is still “underwhelming” in the overall economic environment.   Let me remind you once again that when it comes to housing, it’s all about localizing.  Our local housing market is alive and doing very well, thank you, and it should continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

Even on a national level, the housing market forecast is a “bright spot in a worrisome economy, despite fears of an economic slowdown” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.  He went on to say that “while mortgage rates have ticked up in recent weeks, they remain lower than they were a year ago, which will help boost sales headed into the fall”.

His comments follow on the heels of several housing reports that suggested a solid housing market.  Existing home sales rose to the highest level in 17 months according to NAR’s latest report, and more new homes are entering the pipeline as well. 

Freddie Mac economists predict that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage will remain below 4% for the remainder of this year, which should ease affordability concerns somewhat for potential buyers.

And speaking of buyers, much of the demand lately has being coming from young adults.  “The millennial cohort has now entered the housing market in force and is already driving major changes in buying and selling patterns,” according to Frank Martell, president and CEO of CoreLogic.  

“Almost half of the millennials over 30 years old have bought a house in the last three years.  These folks are increasingly looking to move out of urban centers in favor of the suburbs, which offer more privacy and a greener environment. Perhaps more significantly, almost 80% of all millennials are confident they will become homeowner in the future”, he added.

This is especially great news for us in Colorado Springs since we’re one of the top 10 areas where millennials want to live. Companies are also realizing this, moving their offices here and relocating employees as well.  All these folks are looking for housing and many want to buy. At the moment there are not a lot of existing homes for sale which is helping drive up prices.   Lawrence Yun, chief economist for NAR recently said, “Rising demand will reaccelerate home price appreciation in the absence of more supply.”  Fortunately, the mortgage interest rates are keeping monthly payments from escalating too rapidly but no one knows how long they will remain this low.

Anyone who has even considered selling their present home and trading up or moving to a new neighborhood might want to take the time to find out all their options NOW.  It takes a lot of information to make an informed, relevant decision, most especially since we’re talking about most folks' greatest financial asset. 

That’s where I come in.  I’ve been in the local real estate arena for 47 plus years and have seen all types of cycles and know the “ins and outs” of buying and selling in all of them.  When you add that to my investment banking background, you’ll find I’m your man to go to for answers to most any of your residential real estate questions.  More importantly, if there is something I don’t know, I do know where to get the answers—an added value for my clients.  

Any real estate decision should not be taken lightly or without thinking of what it all entails.  This is true for selling or purchasing an existing home, buying new construction or purchasing a home for investment purposes.  There are all kinds of housing information sites on the internet that should be taken lightly.  A number of uninformed sources who call themselves experts give opinions without facts to back them up and this can be dangerous. Just remember—if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.  

An experienced real estate professional like me can provide answers to help you make the best decisions for you and your family.  Sometimes it’s not in your best interest to move and I’ll tell you that, too.  Your goals become mine and when we work together, we can find the best way for you to proceed--or not, if it’s not the right move at present.

It all starts with a phone call to me at 593.1000 or an email to Harry@HarrySalzman.com.  I’m looking forward to hearing from you so we can get the ball rolling.  The sooner we talk, the sooner you will be one your way to achieving your personal “American Dream”.

 

SEPTEMBER 2019 BROUGHT SMALLER GAINS IN HOME VALUES AND A LOW NUMBER OF SALES

Statistics provided by the Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp., or it’s PPMLS

Here are some highlights from the September 2019 PPAR report. Don’t forget that the new format of this report no longer provides monthly statistics for each individual neighborhood.  However, if you are interested in what’s happening in your neighborhood, I can provide you with this information through other means.

In El Paso County, the average days on the market for single family/patio homes was 26.  For condo/townhomes is was 18.  

The sales price/list price for single family/patio homes was 99.8% and for condo/townhomes  was 99.7%.  

You can see from those statistics alone that buying a home in today’s seller’s market is not as easy as in the past, but with me on your side you’ve got a considerably better than average shot at it.

Please click here to view the detailed 9-page report, including charts.  If you have any questions about the report or to find out how it relates to your individual situation, just give me a call.

In comparing September 2019 to September 2018 for All Homes in PPAR:                     

                        Single Family/Patio Homes:

·       New Listings are 1,421, Down 6.3%

·       Number of Sales are 1,394, Up 9.5%

·       Average Sales Price is $368,430, Up 7.1%

·       Median Sales Price is $325,500, Up 6.5%

·       Total Active Listings are 2,089, Down 14.7%

·       Months Supply is 1.5

 

Condo/Townhomes:

·       New Listings are 213, no change 

·       Number of Sales are 202, no change

·       Average Sales Price is $270,453, Up 9.9%

·       Median Sales Price is $241,000, Up 11.4%

·       Total Active Listings are 209, no change

·       Months Supply is 1.0

Now a look at more statistics…

 

SEPTEMBER 2019 LOCAL MARKET UPDATE AND MONTHLY INDICATORS  ILLUSTRATE OUR LOCAL TRENDS IN DETAIL

Colorado Association of REALTORS® ,Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp, or it’s PPMLS

Providing greater detail than the above report, this contains information on both Colorado Springs and Teller counties for residential real estate.  

It is broken down by geographical areas and you can look to see how your neighborhood is doing in terms of sales, prices, and more.  

The “Activity Snapshot” for all residential properties in El Paso and Teller counties shows the Year-to-Date one-year change:

  • Sold Listings for All Properties were slightly Down 0.1%
  • Median Sales Price for All Properties was Up 6.8%
  • Active Listings on All Properties were Down 21.3%

You can click here to read the 16-page Monthly Indicators or click here to get specific information on the geographical area of your choice from the 18-page Local Market Update. I recommend that you check out your own area or one that you are considering, to get a good idea of the local pulse. As an example, here is a detailed report on the Colorado Springs area:

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6 GRAPHS SHOWING THE STRENGTH OF THE CURRENT housing market (Infographic)

Keeping Current Matters, 9.13.19

This is a national average….and our stats are better, but more data to support why NOW is a good time to buy and sell.

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Some Highlights:

  • Keeping an eye on the current status of the housing market is one of the best ways to make powerful and confident decisions when buying or selling a home.  That’s just one of the many things I do for you.
  • Mortgage rates remaining near historic lows and homes selling quickly are just two of the key elements driving the strength of today’s market.
  • While the national data is shown here, make sure to contact me to determine what’s happening locally so you can be fully informed when making your housing decisions.  Just give me a call and let’s get the ball rolling.

 

MORE REASONS TO HIRE A real estate PROFESSIONAL…AKA ME..

Keeping Current Matters, 9.6.19

In case I didn’t make it clear earlier…

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HOW WILL THE NEXT RECESSIOIN AFFECT THE housing market?

Keeping Current Matters, 8.2019

I get asked this quite often and the following infographic provides a great answer:

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Points to “take home”...literally:

  • There is a lot of talk in the media about a pending economic slowdown.

 

  • The good news is, home values actually increased in 3 of the last 5 U.S. recessions, and decreased by less than 2% in the 4th.

 

  • Many experts predict a potential recession is on the horizon; however, housing will NOT be the trigger and home values will still continue to appreciate.  It will NOT be a repeat of the crash in the 2008 housing market.

 

6 THINGS PROFESSIONAL BURGLARS DON’T WANT YOU TO KNOW

RISMedia, 4.2017

A burglary occurs every 20 seconds in the U.S., but you can still protect yourself without installing expensive security features.

Home burglary generally has a pattern; criminals are looking for an easy target they can rob fast. Here are six tips from career burglars you can use to defend your home and prevent break-ins.

  1.  Nighttime Burglaries Aren’t the Best Time.  Burglars like to break into homes during daytime hours—the last thing they want to do is encounter someone at home.  Weekdays are ideal for thieves, since weekend schedules are too unpredictable. Between 12:30 p.m.and 2:30 p.m. are the most popular times because there’s a high chance people will be away at work or school.

 

  1. They Know When You’re Not Home—Thanks to Social Media.  While it’s tempting to show photos of your vacations while you are away, it is better to wait until you return to do so.  Criminals scout social media accounts like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to find victims.  Locating someone’s physical home address is relatively easy using GPS data embedded in photos posted online.  Even if all your accounts are private, that old friend from high school or new neighbor down the street could be a potential criminal.  Don’t give them information concerning your comings and goings.

 

  1. They Don’t Like Your Security Practices.  Burglars want nothing to do with alarm systems—no matter who installs them.  Homes without a security system are 300 percent more like to be targeted for a break-in.  If you do install an alarm system, use a strong security code. And wipe off dirt from numbers that are regularly pushed.  Unlocked windows, unused deadbolts, poorly lit homes and residences without security systems are prime targets.  It’s also good to use tricks that make it look like someone is home like motion sensor lights and timed lights, or tvs or radios left on.  Cars parked in the driveway also deter burglars.

 

  1. Great Targets Advertise Their Weapon Supply.  If you’re a proud gun owner, that won’t scare burglars away—it only entices them.  A gun is stolen every two minutes in the U.S. so homeowners should be sure to always lock up their guns.  An NRA bumper sticker on a car or Smith & Wesson sign on a house advertises that there are lots of guns to steal.

 

  1. Shrubs and Architecture Make Great Hiding Spots.  Tall bushes are favorites of burglars since they offer an unobstructed view from the street and an easy way to hide from neighbors.  Keep shrubs and large landscaping features trimmed. If you want something big by the window, choose thorny plants like cactus or roses that will detract burglars. Also, high fences and half walls provide burglars a place to hide and plot their method of entry.  The best defense is a clear view of your front porch.

 

  1. Valuables in the Open Help Them Decide on a Target.  Keep your expensive items out of sight.  You make it too easy if you advertise the type of valuables a burglar can steal.  Don’t leave a laptop by your kitchen window or even a nice car in a garage window with a clear sight line to the street.  Key hooks—especially with labels for each key—need to be concealed out of view of windows too.  It’s also a good idea to keep family calendars out of view.  No need to advertise when you’ll be away.  Any ID documents or mail left in plain sight are also a gold mine for a criminal looking to easily steal your details for identity theft.

HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE 9.26.19

by Harry Salzman

September 26, 2019

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

           A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my Unique Brand of Personal Service, it is my desire to share current real estate issues that will help to make you a more successful and profitable buyer or seller.  

 

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PUZZLED ABOUT RESIDENTIAL real estate? FORTUNATELY, YOU’VE GOT ME…

There’s been so much in the news concerning all facets of the residential real estate market that it can start to get confusing. Interest rates are dropping…should you refi?  Or should you use that as an opportunity to sell and trade up or move to another neighborhood? Or is it time to look at investment property because home values are going up faster than the volatile stock and bond markets?  Or possibly it’s a good idea to use a home purchase as a way to keep down student debt for your family members?  Maybe new construction is the way to go?  

How can one muddle through all of this and know what’s best for his or her individual needs, wants and budget?

Solution?  It’s as simple as reaching out to ME.  This is where my 47 plus years in the local real estate arena, along with my investment banking background, can become your greatest asset.  

I’ve been through just about every cycle imaginable and know the “ins and outs” of what can and can’t work and it’s my pleasure to help you find the best solutions for YOU.

Yes, interest rates are down to historical lows and home prices locally are still climbing, although at a slower pace than in the past year.  This is actually good news since things are starting to get back to a more manageable level in terms of home price increases.  The lack of available listings helped raise prices and kept some from being able to find homes.  We are starting to see a few more homes on the market as folks are considering a trade up or other type of move or investment.

Colorado Springs is faring better than most cities since we are continuing to make many of the “top 10” lists such as “Best Place to Live”, “Best Place for Small Business”, “Hottest real estate Market” and many others.  A number of companies are choosing to relocate to here and with them come employees who need housing and more.  All of this bodes well for those of us who are already here…except maybe for what WE consider “increased street traffic”—something Denver or another bigger city would consider a blessing!

Back to the housing puzzle.  All of the things you might consider confusing are “just another day” for me.  And I’m thrilled to be able to share my knowledge with you so you can make an informed decision one way or another.

No one knows how long the low rates will be around, as most economists predicted they’d be long gone by now.  However, that doesn’t mean that what goes down quickly can’t also go up just as fast.  It’s best to be prepared and start getting your answers as soon as possible.

If you, a family member or co-worker are sifting through all the options…NOW is the time to give me a call.  I can be reached at 593.1000 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com and let’s see how together we can make all your residential real estate dreams come true.  I can help you find answers for your particular needs, but you need to pick up your phone and call me first!

 

ASPIRING HOME BUYERS PROFILE

National Association of REALTORS,.2019

The National Association of REALTORS released a study of data that was collected throughout 2018 on a monthly basis as part of their Housing Opportunities and Market Experience report.  It is an in depth examination of the consumer preferences of non-homeowners, defined as those that rent and those that live with someone else (such as family and friends) without paying rent.  

Topics include if now is a good time to buy a home, the perception of homeownership as part of the American Dream, why non-owners do not own now and what would cause them to buy in the future.

I found this research interesting and wanted to share it with you.  I have reproduced several of the charts below and you can click here to read the report in its entirety. A couple of highlights:

  • Of the U.S. consumer households that were surveyed each month in 2018, 64 percent of respondents were homeowners, 27 percent were renters, and nine percent lived with someone else.
  • Of the non-owners, 45 percent were 34 years old or under, 59 percent make an income of under $50,000, and 43 percent live in suburban areas.
  • For both homeowners and non-homeowners alike, homeownership is strongly considered a part of the American Dream. For non-owners, roughly 75 percent reported that homeownership is part of their American Dream.
  • For owners, nine in ten believe it is part of their American Dream.

I might add that interest rates in the beginning of 2018 were not as favorable as they they were later in the year so that could have played a part in some decisions made at that time

I’ve found that in many cases those that thought they could not afford to purchase a home actually could not afford to NOT purchase a home.  It’s all in figuring out the right way if at all possible.  Just ask some of my very satisfied clients! 

 

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5 REASONS TO SELL THIS FALL

Keeping current matters, 9.2019

  1. Demand is Strong…According to the latest Buyer Traffic Report from the National Association of REALTORS, buyer demand remains strong throughout the majority of the country.  These buyers are ready, willing and able to purchase homes right now, and more often than not are competing with each other to buy the same home!  NOW is the time to take advantage of the buyer activity we are currently seeing in the market.

 

  1. There is Less Competition Now…Homes are in short supply…way less than what is needed for a normal market. This means that there are not enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers.  

Historically a homeowner would stay in his or her home for an average of six years.  Since 2011 that number has hovered between nine and ten years.  There are many who were unable to sell over the last few years due to negative equity situations, but as home values continue to appreciate, more and more will be given the freedom to sell and trade up.  Don’t wait until more inventory comes on the market before you decide to sell.  

 

  1. The Process Will Be Quicker…In today’s competitive environment, potential buyers have had to do all they can to stick out from the crowd, including getting pre-approved for their mortgage financing or paying all cash.  This makes the entire selling process much easier and simpler, as buyers know exactly what they can afford before shopping for a home. 

 

  1. There Will Never Be a Better Time to Move Up…If your next move is a to a premium or luxury home, now is the time to sell and move up.  There is currently more inventory in the slightly higher price ranges so you will have more choices.

Another reason to act soon is that prices nationally are projected to appreciate by 5.2% over the next year, which means our prices will likely appreciate even more. If you’re moving to a higher-priced home, it will wind up costing you more in raw dollars if you wait.

 

  1. It’s Time to Move on with Your Life…Consider the reasons you are thinking of selling in the first place and decide whether it is worth waiting.  Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire in the home of your dreams.

 

HOMEOWNERS HAVE NEVER BEEN RICHER

RealtorMag, 9.23.19

Nationally, homeowners with a mortgage have seen their equity rise by 4.8% year over year.  The average homeowner has gained $4,900 in home equity between the second quarter of 2018 and the second quarter of this year, according to CoreLogic’s Home Equity Report.

“Borrower equity rose to an all-time high in the first half of 2019 and has more than doubled since the housing recovery started,” says Frank Nothaft, chief economist for CoreLogic.  “Combined with low mortgage rates, this rise in home equity supports spending on home improvements and may help improve balance sheets of households who could take out home equity loans to consolidate their debt.”

Homeowners are getting richer and fewer are in a negative equity position.  From the first quarter to the second quarter of this year, the total number of homes with a mortgage that were in negative equity dropped 7% to 2 million homes—or 3.8% of all homes with a mortgage.  

Overall, the western part of the U.S. is seeing some of the strongest equity gains and as you will see on the map below, Colorado is one of the top 10 states with the highest average gain in equity.

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So, once again…NOW is the time to put that equity to work for you.  When you trade up, you’ll likely get more for your present home while taking advantage of the low interest rates on the new one.  You might be surprised to find out that the net cost could be far less than you might imagine.  Just give me a call and let’s see if this is something that can work for you and your family.

 

MORE PEOPLE FEEL POSITIVE ABOUT BUYING, SELLING

RealtorMag, 9.23.19

With the low mortgage rates fueling more favorable opinions on home buying, nearly two-thirds of Americans, or 63%, believe now is a good time to buy a home, according to the newly released Housing Opportunities and Market Experience Survey from the NAR.  

Lawrence Yun, chief economist for NAR said, “I see no sign of the optimism about home buying fading” despite some concerns over the direction of the economy.  

Millennials tended to be the most pessimistic about the direction of the economy while older consumers with higher incomes tended to be the most optimistic over the prospects of homebuying.  The silent generation (those born between 1925 and 1945) were the most upbeat about buying at 75%, followed closely by older baby boomers (those born between 1946 and 1954) at 72% the study showed.  Further, 72% of consumers with incomes of $100,000 felt now is a good time to buy compared to 54% of consumers with incomes under $50,000.

And once more, the West wins, with being the most likely to say now is a good time to sell at 81%.

According to The Wall Street Journal, August was the strongest month of sales for U.S. homes in nearly a year and a half.  The article goes on the attribute this to renewed hope for market recovery.  They also say that economic uncertainly may be holding some potential buyers back but for those that can afford it, rising rents that continue to break price records nationwide (as well as here in Colorado Springs) are starting to nudge some renters to consider homeownership more seriously.

Here are some charts to show a more detailed breakdown of the NAR survey:

 

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REGISTER NOW FOR THE UPCOMING SOUTHERN COLORADO ECONOMIC FORUM

There’s still a little time to register for the always sold out and informative UCCS Economic Forum which is put on by the College of Business.

The Forum will be held on Thursday, October 10, from 1:30- 4:30 at the ENT Center for the Arts.  This will be followed by a Networking Happy Hour.

The keynote address will be given by Alison Felix, Vice President & Executive, Kansas City Federal Reserve-Denver Branch.

To register and more information, please go to: 

www.UCCSEconomicForum.com.

 

 

HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE 9.10.19

by Harry Salzman

September 10, 2019

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

         A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my Unique Brand of Personal Service, it is my desire to share current real estate issues that will help to make you a more successful and profitable buyer or seller.  

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LOTS OF REASONS TO BE HAPPY THIS MONTH…

Home values are up, mortgage rates are down, and Colorado Springs is one of the “cheapest” places to live.  How’s that for an interesting lead-in?

We will get to prices in a moment, but I wanted to share with you the front-page story from the Colorado Springs real estate Journal on August 26th.  A new study by Move.org ranked cities based on the average monthly cost of living.  Out of the USA’s top 75 cities, Colorado Springs was ranked 26thmost affordable with an average monthly cost of living listed as $1,719.15.  Lower utility costs helped the city in the rankings and only three cities in the top 25 had lower utility costs than Colorado Springs. That’s just one more reason why companies and their employees are choosing to relocate here.  

The four months of record-setting home price increases was stalled in August. However, prices continue to rise, although at a more sustainable pace.  Traditionally, August is a slower month in real estate as families with children are already settled into their new homes prior to the start of the school year, so the slight slowdown in sales was anticipated.

Median sales prices on all home types continued to rise, while active listings were down 9.2 percent for single family/patio homes and up only 1.1 percent for condo/townhomes.  This shortage of available listings is certainly playing a role in keeping sales down.  If there were more available homes, especially at the lower end of the market, I believe the market would be hopping no matter what time of year.  As I’ve been telling you for some time, the Colorado Springs housing market is one of the strongest in the country and I don’t see an end in sight.

Add the still historically low interest rates to the mix and you can understand why folks are wanting to sell and trade up. We are seeing activity in all price ranges and in new home construction, too.

If you have even considered a move, or just want to check out the possibilities for your individual situation, NOW is the time. Those looking for investment properties should be considering time a priority, too.  Simply give me a call at 593.1000 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com and let’s see how we together can make all your residential real estate dreams come true.

 

AUGUST 2019 BROUGHT SMALLER GAINS IN HOME VALUES AND A LOW NUMBER OF SALES

Statistics provided by the Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp., or it’s PPMLS

Here are some highlights from the August 2019 PPAR report. Remember that the new format of this report no longer provides monthly statistics for each individual neighborhood. However, if you are interested in what’s happening in your neighborhood, I can provide you with this information through other means.

In El Paso County, the average days on the market for single family/patio homes was 21.  For condo/townhomes is was 15.  

The sales price/list price for single family/patio homes was 99.6% and for condo/townhomes  was 100.1%.  

You can see from those statistics alone that buying a home in today’s seller’s market is not as easy as in the past, but with me on your side you’ve got a considerably better than average shot at it.

Please click here to view the detailed 9-page report, including charts.  If you have any questions about the report or to find out how it relates to your individual situation, just give me a call.

In comparing August 2019 to August 2018 for All Homes in PPAR:                      

                        Single Family/Patio Homes:

·       New Listings are 1,842, Up 3.1%

·       Number of Sales are 1,542, Up 0.9%

·       Average Sales Price is $371,552, Up 4.0%

·       Median Sales Price is $330,000, Up 4.8%

·       Total Active Listings are 2,194, Down 9.2%

·       Months Supply is 1.4

 

Condo/Townhomes:

·       New Listings are 250, Down 4.6%

·       Number of Sales are 207, Down 9.2%

·       Average Sales Price is $262,877, Up 14.4%

·       Median Sales Price is $242,000, Up 15.2%

·       Total Active Listings are 187 Up 1.1%

·       Months Supply is 0.9

Now a look at more statistics…

 

AUGUST 2019 LOCAL MARKET UPDATE AND MONTHLY INDICATORS ILLUSTRATE OUR LOCAL TRENDS IN DETAIL

Colorado Association of REALTORS® ,Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp, or it’s PPMLS

Providing greater detail than the above report, this contains information on both Colorado Springs and Teller counties for residential real estate.  

It is broken down by geographical areas and you can look to see how your neighborhood is doing in terms of sales, prices, and more.  

The “Activity Snapshot”for all residential properties in El Paso and Teller counties shows the Year to Date one-year change:

  • Sold Listings for All Properties were Down 1.6%
  • Median Sales Price for All Properties was Up 6.7%
  • Active Listings on All Properties were Down 19.6%

You can click here to read the 16-page Monthly Indicators or click here to get specific information on the geographical area of your choice from the 18-page Local Market Update. I recommend that you check out your own area or one that you are considering, to get a good idea of the local pulse. As an example, here is a detailed report on the Colorado Springs area:

 

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MORTGAGE RATES DROP TO ANOTHER 3-YEAR LOW LAST WEEK

HousingWire, 9.5.19

Last week, once again, the U.S. rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage fell to another three-year low, according to the latest Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

According to the data, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 3.49% for the week ending September 5, 2019, down from the previous week’s 3.58%. This average is nearly an entire percentage point lower than its 2018 rate of 4.54%.

Freddie Mac Chief Economist Sam Khater said, “While economic growth is clearly slowing due to rising manufacturing and trade headwinds, economic fundamentals are still solid for U.S. consumers.  The unemployment rate is low, housing affordability is improving, buyer demand is rising and home price growth is stable.”

The 15-year FRM averaged 3% last week, falling from the previous week’s 3.06%.  This time last year it came in at 3.99%.

The image below highlights last week’s changes:

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Bottom Line?  What are you waiting for?  These rates mean you can get more for your money even with homes values increasing. Run…don’t walk…to your nearest phone and give me a holler today!

 

DECLINING MORTGAGE RATES PROPEL NATION’S HOME BUYING OUTLOOK TO A NEW HIGH

HousingWire, 9.9.19

Last month, American housing confidence increased slightly as more consumers expressed optimism regarding the nation’s falling mortgage loan rates, according to Fannie Mae’s Home Purchase Sentiment Index.

The sentiment was up by 0.1 point to 93.8 in August.  Not only is this up 5.8 points from last year’s rate, but it also is a new survey high.  The survey is constructed from six questions, gauging the current views and forward-looking expectations of consumers navigating the housing market.

According to Doug Duncan, Fannie Mae senior vice president and chief economist, “Growing expectations that mortgage rates will remain flat or decline are reflected in (this report) which is now at a survey high even though other indicators of economic and housing market sentiment are flat to negative.”

So…one more time…what are you waiting for?  Give me a call today and let’s see how we can put these low rates to work for you.

HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE 8.28.2019--SECOND EDITION

by Harry Salzman

August 28, 2019

 

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

*****SECOND EDITION*****

          A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my Unique Brand of Personal Service, it is my desire to share current real estate issues that will help to make you a more successful and profitable buyer or seller.  

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IN CASE YOU MISSED IT…

This article was today’s lead story on the front page of THE GAZETTE.  It should make those of you living in Colorado Springs smile BIG.

Rich Laden asked for my input and if you know me at all—you know I take every chance I can to brag about Colorado Springs, and most especially when it’s such good news.

Click here to read the article.

And as you will see, every minute you wait to buy a new home is one where you are losing equity you could be earning!  

 

Call me today at 593.1000 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com.  

 

HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE 8.28.2019

by Harry Salzman

August 28, 2019

 

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

         A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my Unique Brand of Personal Service, it is my desire to share current real estate issues that will help to make you a more successful and profitable buyer or seller.  

 

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HOME PRICES CONTINUE TO RISE, DRIVEN BY THE LISTING SHORTAGE AND LOW MORTGAGE RATES AS WELL AS THE ROBUST ECONOMY

I’m still dealing with buying and selling frenzy and from what I can see, it doesn’t appear to be slowing down at present.  On August 19, Freddie Mac reported that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgages were averaging 3.6%, a three-year low

Last year at this time the average sat at 4.53%, which combined with the listing shortage, explains in part why home values are increasing. According to a report in Capital Economics, a 3% increase in home values nationally is predicted.  As most of you are aware, the Colorado Springs housing market has been increasing at a higher pace than the national average so I would suspect that our average increase will be considerably higher than 3%!

The report stated, “As with any other asset, lower interest rates will act to boost home values.  Other things equal, with a given income and debt-to-income ratio, a lower interest rate raises the amount a household can spend on a home”.

U.S. home sales started picking up in July, which is the first national year-over-year uptick in 17 months.  Economists are seeing this as a sign that the lowest interest rates in 50 years, along with strong employment and higher wages have finally sparked more home buying.

We continue to experience an all-time low in listings of existing homes in the Colorado Springs area and this is still creating bidding wars and selling prices considerably over asking prices.  There are relatively few “bargains” in today’s market, most especially in the lower price ranges.  And speaking of the lower price range, I’m seeing a lot of my investor and first-time homeowner clients move quickly when those homes are listed, so they don’t stay on the market for long, often for less than a day!

Another driving force in investment property purchases has been the volatile stock market of late.  Folks are sensing that over the long haul, home prices continue to rise, while stocks and bonds have been a bit riskier at present.  

On the plus side for first-time buyers, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are considering alternatives to the industry standard FICO scores that are used to determine an applicant’s creditworthiness.  Using an alternative scoring process would open the mortgage market to a greater number of people and lead to greater approval for those with little or no credit history.

My advice to anyone who has even considered selling their home to trade up or move to a new neighborhood or who has thought about investment property—don’t delay.  With more companies deciding to relocate to the Springs we are seeing more folks looking for homes, thus adding to the shortage.  These same folks could be the buyers of YOUR present home, allowing you the opportunity to move on and take advantage of the low interest rates.  

As always, no one knows how long these rates will be around.  If you, a family member or co-worker are even thinking of looking for a new home or an investment property….NOW is the time.  Simply give me a call at 593.1000 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com and let’s see how together we can make all your residential real estate dreams come true.  It may not be as easy as it once was, but hey—I haven’t been so successful in my 47 plus years in this arena without learning how to weather all types of cycles and obstacles successfully.  I can help you find a way, but you need to pick up your phone and call me first!

 

13 COLORADO SPRINGS COMPANIES QUALIFY FOR THE INC. 5000 LIST

The Gazette, 8.15.19

Colorado Springs set another new record with 13 area companies qualifying for the Inc. 5000 list of fastest-growing private companies. This surpassed the 2009 record of 11 companies and should come as no surprise to anyone who reads my eNewsletter. We have seen record low unemployment rates, a robust economy, new companies relocating here, a red-hot real estate market and more in the past several years and the end is nowhere in sight. 

I wish to congratulate not only the 13 companies, but also Mayor John Suthers, the City Council, the Colorado Springs Chamber & EDC, UCCS Chancellor Venkat Reddy and others too numerous to mention that have worked so diligently to get Colorado Springs to the place where we are today.  It took a lot of hard work and compromise to get here and a big “BRAVO” is deserved by all.

 

CONDO MORTGAGES GET A BOOST

The Wall Street Journal, 8.15.19, The Gazette, 8.15.19

The Federal Housing Administration is hoping to revive the entry-level condo market for first-time buyers because FHA-backed loans require only a 3.5% down payment and lower credit score than conventional loans.

New guidelines were released several weeks ago for the types of mortgages the FHA will insure for condominiums.  Previously, just 6.5% of the 150,000 condominium developments in the U.S. were eligible for FHA-backed mortgages.  Now the FHA will start backing mortgages for individual units and will have greater flexibility to react to changes in market conditions. 

This will make it easier for first-time buyers, retirees, and minorities to become homeowners due to the lower down payment and credit score requirements.  

If a condominium purchase is something you or a family member is considering, give me a call and let’s see how these new regulations can help this become a reality.

 

UCCS ECONOMIC FORUM DASHBOARD 

UCCS Economic Forum, College of Business, updated 8.22.19

I just received the latest update from the UCCS Economic Forum and as always, I like to share it with you as soon as possible. 

It contains information on the economy, labor force/employment, and consumer sentiment for the U.S., as well as local information concerning wages, military, real estate, tourism and more.

Please click here to see the report in full and call me if you have any questions. 

 

AND…PLEASE SAVE THE DATE…

The 23rdAnnual UCCS Economic Forum will be held on Thursday, October 10, 2019 from 1:30- 4:30 p.m. at the ENT Center for the Arts. 

This always sold out event is a must for anyone doing business in the city of Colorado Springs.  Registration and additional information can be found at:  www.UCCSEconomicForum.com.

 

SENIORS ON THE MOVE IN real estate MARKET

Keeping Current Matters, 8.21.19

August 21st was National Senior Citizens Day.  According to the U.S. Census the honor is because:

“Throughout our history, older people have achieved much for our families, our communities, and our country. That remains true today and gives us ample reason…to reserve a special day in honor of the senior citizens who mean so much to our land.”

Here are some senior-related data in the housing industry:

“The number of Americans ages 65 and older is projected to nearly double from 52 million in 2018 to 95 million by 2060, and the 65-and-older age group’s share of the total population will rise from 16 percent to 23 percent.”

Seniors Believe in Homeownership

Freddie Mac compared the homeownership rates of two groups of seniors:  the Good Times Cohort (born from 1931-1941) and the Previous Generations (born in the 1930s).  The data shows an increase in the homeownership rate for the Good Times Cohort because seniors are now aging in place, living longer, and maintaining a high quality of life into their later years.

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This does not mean all seniors are staying in place. Some are actively buying and selling homes.  In the 2019 Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends Report, the NAR showed the percentage of seniors buying and selling:

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Highlights from the NAR report:

  • Buyers ages 54 to 63 had higher median household incomes and were more likely to be married couples.

 

  • 12% of buyers ages 54 to 63 are first-time homebuyers, 5% (64 to 72) and 4% (73 to 93)

 

  • Buyers ages 54 to 63 purchased because of an interest in being closer to friends and families, job relocation, and the desire to own a home of their own.

 

  • Sellers 54 years and older often downsized and purchased a smaller, less expensive home than the one they sold.

 

  • Sellers ages 64 to 72 lived in their homes for 21 years or more.

 

Bottom Line:

According to NAR’s report, 58% of buyers ages 64 to 72 said they need help from a real estate agent to find the right home.  The transition from a current home to a new one is significant to undertake, especially for anyone who has lived in the same house for many years.  

If you’re a senior or know a senior thinking about this process, please contact me so that I may help make this transition as easy as possible.  In recent years, I’ve helped a number of my clients who I sold homes to 20 or more years ago sell their present home and relocate to another one better suited for their current needs and/or closer to family or friends. 

It takes someone with my 47 plus years of experience and my special brand of customer service to understand the needs and wants of seniors.  It’s not easy to relocate at any age, but it’s much more difficult for those who have lived in the same home for many years.  I can help make this a more enjoyable experience.

 

BUYING A HOME IS A GREAT WAY TO INCREASE YOUR FAMILY’S NET WORTH

Keeping Current Matters, 8.21.19

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Every three years the Federal Reserve conducts its Survey of Consumer Finances where data is collected across all economic and social groups.  The latest survey data covers 2013-2016.

That study revealed that the median net worth of a homeowner is $231,400--a 15% increase since 2013.  At the same time, the median net worth of renters decreased by 5% ($5,200 today compared to $5,500 in 2013).

Those numbers show that the net worth of a homeowner is over 44 times greater than that of a renter.

Owning a home is a great way to build family wealth…

As I’ve mentioned many times before, homeownership is a form of “forced savings”.  Every time you pay your mortgage, rather than paying someone else’s mortgage via renting, you are contributing to your net worth by increasing the equity in your home.

That is the reason Gallup reported that Americans picked real estate as the best long-term investment for the sixth year in a row.  According to this year’s results, 35% of Americans chose real estate.  Stocks followed at 27%, then savings accounts and gold.

Bottom Line:

Call me without delay to find out how you can use your monthly housing cost to increase your family’s wealth.  

HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE 8.8.2019

by Harry Salzman

August 8, 2019

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

           A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my Unique Brand of Personal Service, it is my desire to share current real estate issues that will help to make you a more successful and profitable buyer or seller.

 

 

THE TIMES, THEY KEEP A’CHANGING….

The only “normal” I’ve found lately is that there is none!  The “new normal” keeps changing daily and it can be challenging, to say the least. Fortunately for me I’ve been through many, many housing cycles over my 47 plus years in the local real estate arena and I know how to weather the storms and come out ahead.

I’ve been quite busy this summer and it doesn’t appear to be slowing down.  The fact that Colorado Springs is one of the hottest markets in the country right now doesn’t make it easier for anyone. In May, the National Association of Realtors released a profile of homebuyers for each metropolitan statistical area (MSA) in the U.S. compiled from 2017 U.S. Census data. The report responds to who was the typical homebuyer and what homes they typically buy in each of these MSAs, which provides insight about trends of homeownership at the local level.  The report, in comparing the number of buyers with the number of all homeowners, identified the top 10 large metropolitan areas with the highest concentration of buyers. 

One guess who came in at number one—Colorado Springs!  Companies are choosing our city as the place where they want to relocate, and small business is thriving.  Just more indications that things probably aren’t going to “normalize” in the near future. 

We are also seeing those folks who thought they had missed out on the historically low interest rates who are now earnestly thinking that NOW is the time.  Higher prices aren’t much of a problem for those who want to sell and trade up as they can more than likely get a higher price for their present home.  The only drawback is that folks need to know where they are going next before listing their current residence since it will likely sell much faster than in past years. This is just one of the consequences of the shortage of available homes for sale.

Other scenarios I’ve encountered involve multiple offers in just hours of a listing, many over listing price and all-cash offers that most sellers like since there are no “contingencies”, such as the need to obtain a mortgage or sell another home. These offers are tough to compete with, and understandably so.

If there were more homes available for sale, there would be more “normalcy” but at the moment things are moving fast when it comes to both buying and selling in most price ranges, but especially the lower levels.

I can’t stress strongly enough the need to know exactly what your needs, wants and budget constraints are prior to starting a new home search.  This is where I can be of tremendous service.  I can help direct you to the homes with the features you desire while keeping within your budget. When it comes to financing, I can also direct you to lenders that can get you the best fit for your budget.  A higher priced home might not be a problem if you can keep the monthly mortgage payment within your budget.  It’s all a matter of taking time to make sure it fits for your individual situation.  

Investment properties are also popular right now since monthly rental rates are rising and there are still folks who are being kept out of the current buying market due to prices or other situations.  These folks need to rent and are looking as I write.  If being a landlord is something you’ve considered, I’ve had lots of experience in this myself and would be happy to share the ups and downs with you.

New home construction is another option for those who can’t find what they want with the shortage of available existing homes.  That’s another area where I can help.  I have relationships with most of the local builders and can help you with site and home selection,as well as direct you to a lender that can work well with you.  And all of this is provided by me at no additional cost to you!

If you, a family member or co-worker are even considering a move or an investment property…NOW is the time.  Simply give me a call at 593.1000 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com and let’s see how together we can make your residential real estate dreams come true.

 

JULY 2019 BROUGHT GAINS IN HOME VALUES AND A LOWER NUMBER OF SALES

Statistics provided by the Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp., or it’s PPMLS

Here are some highlights from the July 2019 PPAR report. Remember that the new format of this report no longer provides monthly statistics for each individual neighborhood. However, if you are interested in what’s happening in your neighborhood, I can provide you with this information through other means.

In El Paso County, the average days on the market for single family/patio homes was 22.  For condo/townhomes is was 12.  

The sales price/list price for single family/patio homes was 100.2% and for condo/townhomes  was 99.9%.  

You can see from those statistics alone that buying a home in today’s seller’s market is not as easy as in the past, but with me on your side you’ve got a considerably better than average shot at it.

Please click here to view the detailed 9-page report, including charts.  If you have any questions about the report or to find out how it relates to your individual situation, just give me a call.

In comparing July 2019 to July 2018 for All Homes in PPAR:                       

                        Single Family/Patio Homes:

·       New Listings are 1,852, Down 1.7%

·       Number of Sales are 1,662, Up 4.4%

·       Average Sales Price is $372,607, Up 7.2%

·       Median Sales Price is $332,000, Up 7.1%

·       Total Active Listings are 2,199, Down 7.8%

·       Months Supply is 1.3

 

Condo/Townhomes:

·       New Listings are 249, Up 1.6%

·       Number of Sales are 252, Up 7.2%

·       Average Sales Price is $242,335, Up 3.5%

·       Median Sales Price is $228,500, Up 4.8%

·       Total Active Listings are 198, Up 23.0%

·       Months Supply is 0.8

Now a look at more statistics…

 

JULY 2019 LOCAL MARKET UPDATE AND MONTHLY INDICATORS ILLUSTRATE OUR LOCAL TRENDS IN DETAIL

Colorado Association of REALTORS® ,Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp, or it’s PPMLS

Providing greater detail than the above report, this contains information on both Colorado Springs and Teller counties for residential real estate.  

It is broken down by geographical areas and you can look to see how your geographic area is doing in terms of sales, prices, and more.  

The “Activity Snapshot”for all residential properties in El Paso and Teller counties shows the Year- to-Date one-year change: 

  • Sold Listings for All Properties were Up 2.5%
  • Median Sales Price for All Properties was Up 7.0
  • Active Listings on All Properties were Down 18.2%

You can click here to read the 16-page Monthly Indicators or click here to get specific information on the geographical area of your choice from the 18-page Local Market Update. I recommend that you check out your own area or one that you are considering, to get a good idea of the local pulse. As an example, here is a detailed report on the Black Forrest/Elbert area:

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THREE EXPERTS GIVE INSIGHTS ON INVENTORY IN THE CURRENT MARKET

Keeping current matters, 7.29.19

The current housing landscape, especially in Colorado Springs, offers greater home values, low interest rates and very high buyer demand, all of which point to the strong market forecasted to continue throughout the rest of the year.  

However, as I’ve been saying for months now…the one thing that is causing the market to tap on the brakes is an overall lack of housing inventory.

Here is what a few national industry experts have to add:

  • Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at National Association of Realtors: “Imbalance persists for mid-top-lower priced homes with solid demand and insufficient supply, which is consequently pushing up home prices.”

 

  • Mark Fleming, Chief Economist of First American: “Market conditions are ripe for increasing home sales with one, glaring exception.  The supply of homes for sale remains tight, keeping existing home sales below potential.”

 

  • Danielle Hale, Chief Economist of Realtor.com: “We’re not seeing as many new listings come up on the market…It was only 18 months ago that the number of homes for sale hit its lowest level in recorded history and sparked the fiercest competition among buyers we’ve ever seen.”

Bottom Line?

I’ll say it one more time—if you’re thinking of selling, NOW is the time.  Demand will be strong during a period with very little competition which ideally will lead to a quick sale and a great return on your investment.  Just give me a call and let’s see if this is the right move for you and your family.

 

 

HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE 7.30.2019

by Harry Salzman

July 30, 2019

 

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

          A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my Unique Brand of Personal Service, it is my desire to share current real estate issues that will help to make you a more successful and profitable buyer or seller.

 

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LOCALIZE…LOCALIZE…LOCALIZE

You’ve probably read or heard various things about the national housing market in recent weeks.  Most notably is the fact that homeownership fell slightly in the second quarter 2019 and that existing home sales fell 1.7% in June.  And this is while mortgage interest rates are still historically low.

Colorado Springs does not follow the national trend in general as our median home prices have consistently been considerably higher than that of the U.S. All of the “Top 10” lists such as “Best Place to Live”, “Best Place for Small Business”, “Best Quality of Life”, and more are making companies and their employees sit up and take notice of Colorado Springs.  These folks want housing and want it now.  The problem we face is a lack of available homes for sale—most especially in the more affordable price ranges.  When we do have such properties, as you might expect—they go fast.  

This past week I was busy with both buyers and sellers and had to deal with multiple offers on both ends.  On one home I had six offers within hours of it being listed. And one of my buyers lost their offers on two different homes before finally buying one almost immediately after it came on the market.  There just isn’t a lot of time to think about it once you find the home you want.  What that means is that you need to do your homework (that’s where I come in to help) before you begin the search.  You need to know what your wants, needs and budget constraints are and try to stick with them.  It’s easy to get caught up in a bidding war, but that’s not necessarily a good thing.  You could end up with a home that doesn’t appraise for what you offered, thus making it difficult to find a loan.  There are any number of reasons to walk away from a transaction and as I’ve always emphasized—sometimes walking away is a WIN for a buyer.  

Higher prices are creating a problem for those first-time buyers who, for whatever reason, were not ready before now.  It’s harder to qualify for a higher priced home and the down payment is going to be higher, too.  Many of these folks are being forced into remaining renters for the foreseeable future.  This is opening up opportunities for those looking for investment properties and I’ve had a lot of recent repeat business in this area.  Homes may be costing more, but rent prices are going up accordingly.

The following infographic from this month’s Realtor Magazine illustrates some of the “whys” of the housing shortage:

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If you, a family member or co-worker are even thinking of looking for a new home or an investment property….NOW is the time. Simply give me a call at 593.1000 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com and let’s see how together we can make all your residential real estate dreams come true.  It may not be as easy as it once was, but hey—I haven’t been so successful in my 47 plus years in this arena without learning how to weather all types of cycles and obstacles successfully.  I can help you find a way, but you need to pick up your phone and give me a holler first!

 

EXISTING HOME SALES FALL 1.7% NATIONALLY IN JUNE

National Association of Realtors, 7.23.19

According to Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, “Home sales are running at a pace similar to 2015 levels—even with the exceptionally low mortgage rates, a record number of jobs and a record high net worth in the country.”

Yun says the nation is in the midst of a housing shortage and much more inventory is needed.  “Imbalance persists for mid-to-lower priced homes with solid demand and insufficient supply, which is consequently pushing up home prices.”

This infographic can help explain:

As I mentioned earlier, Colorado Springs is also experiencing a slowdown in sales, which can be attributed to the lack of available homes, but we are faring better than most of the country and should continue to do so.  The historically low interest rates, low unemployment rates and booming economy are providing the impetus for our local residents to finally make the move they’ve been thinking about for some time now.  And with new companies continuing to relocate here, there are more buyers for existing homes.

If you’ve considered selling to trade up, this is a great time since your present home should sell quickly and there are more available homes to choose from in the higher price ranges at present.  You do need to have a plan, though, and know where you want to move before we list your present home because things move quickly once your present home is listed.  Again, give me a call and we can figure out if a trade up move is in your near future.

 

NEW HOME PURCHASES REBOUND

The Wall Street Journal, 7.25.19

Home buyers bought more new homes in June, a bright spot in the housing sector, and most likely due to the lack of existing homes for sale.  

According to a report from the U.S. Commerce Department, newly built single-family home sales increased 7% in June from the prior month, following two straight months of declines.  

New home sales are a narrow slice of all U.S. home sales, as about 90% of homes purchased were previously owned.  But with existing home sales down, new home purchases are a good option for some.

If this is something you have considered, I can help you with that, too.  I have a good working relationship with most of the local homebuilders and can work beside you to help with site and home selection, as well as helping you find the best mortgage loan for your individual needs.  And did I say—I provide this all at NO ADDITIONAL COST TO YOU.  Before you head out to look, give me a call and let’s discuss the ways you can benefit from my assistance in new home buying.

 

U.S. ECONOMY CELEBRATING 10 YEARS OF GROWTH

Economic Advisor, Loan Depot, 6.10.19

July marks the 10thAnniversary of the U.S. economic expansion that began June 2009.  If the streak continues through this month, it will make history, surpassing the 1991-2001 growth cycle to become the longest since 1854, which is as far back as economists have attempted to date business cycles.

We have had heftier extended growth cycles before. In the first 39 quarters of the record expansion of 1991-2001, gross domestic product increased 43%.  In the 39 quarters through this March, GDP grew just 22%.  At the present pace, this run would have to last six more years to match the aggregate growth of 1991-2001 when GDP expanded 54%.

Here is a picture of how the U.S. has changed since the start of the current expansion in 2009 and where it stood in June:

 

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NINE DECORATING MISTAKES THAT DATE YOUR HOME

The Wall Street Journal, 7.21.19

One of the first things I get asked by potential sellers is, “what do I need to do to make my home more marketable so I can get the most money from it?”.  The answer is different for each home, of course, but I read this article last week and thought I would pass on some of the advice.

Dated:  Tubs with built-in jets.  They had their heyday but now seem too bulky, tough to clean and call for up to 80 gallons of water.

Up to Date:  Large standing showers with water-efficient shower heads and space for a built-in stool or wood bench.  They could be enclosed in floor-to-ceiling glass which keeps steam and heat in during use.

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Dated:  Vessel sinks which appear to sit on counters like bowls.  Water gets in where the bowl meets the counter and since the faucet needs to be as high as your hands, the counter gets pushed below standard height.

Up to Date:  Undermount sinks where there’s no lip between the sink and countertop.  Even better are sinks that are actually part of the countertop.

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Dated:  Faux finishes attempting to replicate the golden tones of Tuscan-villa walls.  They add a heaviness to a room and really devalue a space.

Up to Date:  Today’s palettes are much lighter and airier. Paint over sponged or rag-rolled walls and sand down textured walls if practical.

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Dated:  Midrange yellow-toned oak cabinets have gone out of fashion in a big way.  People wanted oak to match the furniture around it, but now folks like to mix up different material and finishes.

Up to Date:  Lighter and brighter cabinetry and color for a clean and sophisticated space.  Also, mixing reclaimed wood with painted wood adds more interest.

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Dated:  Trapezoidal kitchen islands or a countertop peninsula, which has an angle on one or both sides, typically at 45 degrees.  

Up to Date:  Rectangles and square islands give an uninterrupted workflow, an easy-to-navigate traffic path, and will go well with anything else you put in the space.  It will also be as relevant and attractive in 30 years as it is today.

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Dated:  Interior plantation shutters that often cost as much or more than custom drapes.

Up to Date:  Replacing plantation shutters with drapery or roman shades or both.  The softness of the fabric instantly improves the space and drapes can make a ceiling feel taller and a room larger.  For light control, layer drapes over hidden blackout roller shades.

 

These are just a few areas that can add to the “appeal” of the house.  A number of my clients tend to do some or all of these things as time goes by so that they can enjoy the changes prior to selling the home.

 

KITCHEN MISTAKES THAT COULD SINK A SALE

National Association of Realtors, 7.22.19, Realtor.com, 7.19.19

Most buyers put a lot of focus on the kitchen which makes sense because it can be one of the most expensive rooms to remodel. Its features can make or break a sale.

  • Fluorescent lighting.  Swap out bad lighting for a budget-friendly chandelier or pendent lights and remove any curtain valences from the window to allow more natural light in.

 

  • Overcrowded counters.  Clutter is the enemy when you go to sell a home and that means piles of old mail or several small appliances on top of countertops.  Keeping out things like a teapot or dried flowers is very dated.

 

  • Dated drawer knobs.  Drawer knobs that are chipped or scratched can make a kitchen look unkempt and can be an inexpensive do it yourself project that will provide an instant update.

 

  • Faux plants.  These can cheapen a kitchen’s look, too.  Instead, have a vase of fresh flowers on the kitchen island or a few potted herbs along the kitchen windowsill for a real touch of greenery.

 

  • Unsightly trash cans.  Plastic anything needs to be removed—especially that free standing plastic trash can on the floor.  It if has to be out, swap it for one made of metal.  It will give the kitchen a more polished look.  

 

  • Old linoleum.  Every cheap looking kitchen seems to have a linoleum floor but ripping it up and replacing it with hardwood is an expensive undertaking.  To save some money, hide a linoleum floor with a bright rug. Or have it redone with decorative tile which won’t be as expensive as hardwood but will instantly make the space look more luxurious.

 

  • Faddish colors.  Avocado and orange paint may be trendy at one time, but over time it’ll end up looking tired.  Timeless colors such as white, cool grays or other neutrals are best.

 

  • Mismatched appliances.  The ideal kitchen look includes appliances all with the same finish.

 

There you have it.  These are great things to keep in mind as you live in your present home and when it’s time to redo the kitchen or parts of it.  It will not only make the home more presentable to potential buyers but will make it more enjoyable for you while you are living there.

 

 

HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE 7.9.2019

by Harry Salzman

July 9, 2019

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

           A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my Unique Brand of Personal Service, it is my desire to share current real estate issues that will help to make you a more successful and profitable buyer or seller.

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AND HOW WAS YOUR INDEPENDENCE DAY?  (and yes, that’s a LIVE Bald Eagle!)

Carol and I were up in Breckenridge for the July 4th holiday and while wandering around, we came across HawkQuest, a Colorado non-profit organization. Their goal is to bring eagles, owls, falcons and hawks to the public to make education of same both meaningful and fun, while creating an atmosphere which fosters respect of biodiversity, of the finality of extinction and of man’s need to nurture his world while discussing the raptors’ place in our ecosystem.  

And that’s how we came to meet Magissiwa (named for the Ojibwe word migizi,which means bald eagle).  We couldn’t’ resist having our photo taken with her, most especially since it was the Fourth of July.  What better day could we have found? 

In any case, she is quite a beautiful bird with a six foot wing span and a great personality and I wanted to share her picture with you.

I hope you all had a safe and happy holiday celebrating our great nation and most Importantly, the freedom that it provides us all.  I am especially grateful for the men and women in the military both present and past who have sacrificed so much in order to insure that freedom.  Thank you one and all.

 

NOW SOME real estate NEWS…

Just when it appeared that things were slowing down a bit--BOOM-- the mortgage rates went down, and it’s become quite busy again.  These last few weeks have again brought multiple offers, most over listing price, and at times, some disappointing news for buyers when they don’t get home of their choice for reasons we may never know. Sometimes it’s simply that the seller has several offers and doesn’t want to waste the time to counter, so they accept one of the offers as is.  Other times it’s the price offered or the closing time desired.  There are just many reasons, but it’s so difficult to have to explain to a client that they didn’t get “the” home.  It’s not a good feeling and I do everything in my power to try and prevent that from happening.

That’s where my 47 plus years of local experience is so important.  I’ve been around through all types of cycles and I know the “ins and outs” of getting a deal done.  That doesn’t mean even I can guarantee a client will get the first choice each and every time because, as I just mentioned, there are too many factors that are beyond my control in this fast-paced market.  However, I know how to negotiate on a client’s behalf and at times that means advising them to walk away.  As I’ve said in the past, sometimes NOT closing a deal is a win in the long run.

If you, a family member or co-worker are even considering a move…NOW is the time.  Simply give me a call at 593.1000 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com and let’s see how together we can make your residential real estate dreams come true.

 

JUNE 2019 BROUGHT GAINS IN HOME VALUES AND A LOWER NUMBER OF SALES

Statistics provided by the Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp., or it’s PPMLS

Here are some highlights from the June 2019 PPAR report. Remember that the new format of this report no longer provides monthly statistics for each individual neighborhood. However, if you are interested in what’s happening in your neighborhood, I can provide you with this information through other means.

In El Paso County, the average days on the market for single family/patio homes was 24.  For condo/townhomes is was 23.  

The sales price/list price for single family/patio homes was 100.1% and for condo/townhomes  was 100.2%.  

You can see from those statistics alone that buying a home in today’s seller’s market is not as easy as in the past, but with me on your side you’ve got a considerably better than average shot at it.

Please click here to view the detailed 9-page report, including charts.  If you have any questions about the report or to find out how it relates to your individual situation, just give me a call.

In comparing June 2019 to June 2018 for All Homes in PPAR:              

                        Single Family/Patio Homes:

·       New Listings are 2,053, Up 0.1%

·       Number of Sales are 1,651, Down 5.0%

·       Average Sales Price is $373,792, Up 3.4%

·       Median Sales Price is $331,000, Up 1.9%

·       Total Active Listings are 2,122, Down 1.9%

·       Months Supply is 1.3

 

                        Condo/Townhomes:

·       New Listings are 251, Down 6.3%

·       Number of Sales are 192, Down 5.0%

·       Average Sales Price is $248,816, Up 8.1%

·       Median Sales Price is $240,000, Up 10.9%

·       Total Active Listings are 167, Up 18.4%

·       Months Supply is 0.9

As I mentioned earlier, I’m seeing more activity in recent weeks, so I expect these numbers to continue to rise.  With the lowered interest rates on mortgages, I’m finding that those who thought they had been priced out of the current market now realizing that they can not only get more for their present home but can benefit from a lower monthly payment than they anticipated on a new one.  

If a newly constructed home is under consideration, I can assist you with that, too.  I’m familiar with most of the new construction in the city and can help you with the site and plan selection as well as help you find the best financing to fit your individual needs.  And—did I mention that I provide all this at no additional cost to you?

Now a look at more statistics…

 

JUNE 2019 LOCAL MARKET UPDATE AND MONTHLY INDICATORS ILLUSTRATE OUR LOCAL TRENDS IN DETAIL

Colorado Association of REALTORS® ,Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp, or it’s PPMLS

Providing greater detail than the above report, this contains information on both Colorado Springs and Teller counties for residential real estate.  

It is broken down by geographical areas and you can look to see how your geographic area is doing in terms of sales, prices, and more.  

The “Activity Snapshot” for all residential properties in El Paso and Teller counties shows the Year to Date one-year change:

  • Sold Listings for All Properties were Down 5.2%
  • Median Sales Price for All Properties was Up 2.9%
  • Active Listings on All Properties were Down 16.6%

You can click here to read the 16-page Monthly Indicators or click here to get specific information on the geographical area of your choice from the 18-page Local Market Update. I recommend that you check out your own area or one that you are considering, to get a good idea of the local pulse. As an example, here is a detailed report on Colorado Springs:

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BUYING AND SELLING RESIDENTIAL real estate CALLS FOR A SEASONED PROFESSIONAL.  WHO YA GONNA CALL?  

ME, OF COURSE.

Summit Daily News, 7.6.19, in part

real estate is often the largest financial investment and greatest asset of many families. Especially in today’s fast-paced market, it’s not one that should be undertaken without a knowledgeable, experienced professional in your corner.

Yes, technology is streamlining the process of both buying and selling residential real estate, but there’s something it just can’t do—replace the value and expertise of a professional, local real estate agent.

Beware of those companies that say you don’t need a Realtor because you DO need help in so many areas, most especially in education and ethics.

Here are a few things a professional Realtor brings to the table:

  • Timely, Relevant Listing Information.  Not all local listings are on the Internet and many mass market sites are not updated frequently enough to stay current.  To get access to most of the listings in the Pikes Peak area you need to work with a Realtor who has access to the PPMLS and can have pertinent listings sent directly to you.

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  • Expert Market Knowledge.  A local professional like myself can provide you with expertise and knowledge of El Paso and Teller Counties that someone out of this market cannot.  Someone like me is engaged in the community, both professionally and personally.  I can help you find local sources such as plumbers, carpet cleaners and electricians and more.  I know the best suited areas for families as well as those for retired folks.  I work with your individual wants, needs and budget to direct you to the home that will make you happy for years to come. And because I live and work here, I can provide you with the most accurate comparables that no computer can possibly know.

 

  • Full Access to Properties for Sale.  The only way you can gain access to a property is by using a Realtor.  You might see many photos on online sites, including PPMLS, but the only way to know for sure is to step inside, see the views for yourself and truly feel what it would be like to live there.

 

  • Professional, Ethical Standards.  All members of the National Association of Realtors are required to take code of ethics class every two years. This class updates realtors on 17 articles within this code that address a realtor’s duty to clients, the public, and to other realtors.

What that means is that by hiring me as your Realtor, you’re ensuring that I will protect your best interests, disclose important information about the property, provide competent services and other important actions that maintain the integrity of your transaction.  My duty is to you and your goal becomes mine.

 

  • Guidance Throughout the Transaction.  real estate professionals like myself are “guides” as we truly guide our clients through a long and oftentimes complicated process.  Navigating and negotiating details every step of the way is important and this is an area where I shine brightly.  I know how to not only negotiate expertly on your behalf, I can also lead you to the right lender for your specific needs.  

 

Next time you or someone you know thinks that they can save money and/or time by purchasing real estate online, remember these essential points and ask yourself, or them, whether or not it’s wise to place such an important investment in the hands of a computer.  

 

And then call me.  

 

MORTGAGE RATES HAVEN’T BEEN THIS LOW SINCE 2016

Realtor magazine, 6.28.19

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The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage has dropped for the seventh time in the last nine weeks, reaching the lowest average since November 2016, according to Freddie Mac in its weekly mortgage market survey last week.

“While the industrial and trade related economic data continues to dominate the news, the drop in mortgage rates over the last two months is already being felt in the housing market,” say Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.  “Through late June, home purchase applications improved by five percentage points compared to the previous month.  In the near term, we expect the housing market to continue to improve from both a sales and price perspective.”

Once again, just one more reminder that if you thought you missed the historically low interest rates…they’re back.  No one knows how long they will be here, but while they are, if you’ve waited…NOW is the time.

 

UPGRADES BOOST A HOME’S SALE PRICE

USA Today, 6.28.19

Getting a home ready for sale can seem overwhelming at times, especially in knowing what to fix or replace in order to get the most dollars possible.  Again, just a reminder that this is where someone like me can give you advice that will help show the house in the best possible way.

The most important thing to consider is looks.  A home that has a new roof, windows or HVAC system may be important to a buyer, but if the home is not visually appealing most buyers will cross it off their list.  

Some things to consider:

  • Groom your yard.  A minimal outdoor spruce-up can add as much as 5% to the sales price.  Today’s buyers, especially the younger generation, consider outdoor space an added value—sometimes more important than a remodeled kitchen.

 

  • The kitchen is key.  Inside, the kitchen is the most important room, according to real estate agents.  But don’t bother with a complete renovation as most return just 51 cents on the dollar according to Zillow. Rather, a smart cosmetic makeover will do the trick and raise the sales price by roughly 5%.  This could include new appliances, countertops and floors that coordinate.

 

  • Appearance inside counts, too.  Painting inside can help make a home feel new.  In Colorado Springs the average cost to paint an entire interior runs between $3000-$4,000 but it adds stronger marketability to the home.  “Smart” features are a plus, especially for younger buyers, and enabling a thermostat, doorbell, lock, camera and speaker costs around $1500 and can boost a home’s sales price by up to 5%, they added.

 

These are just some ways to help you prevent doing things that are not going to reap returns and to show you where you can do others that will boost the sales price and give your home the best visual appearance to a potential buyer.  

Each home is different, though, and when we get together to list your home, I can provide you with what I believe will help you get the most “bang for your buck” and bring offers to the table.  I can also recommend professionals who I know and trust to help you get the job done on a timely basis and at a reasonable cost.  This is just one of the many things I bring to the table when I’m working for you

 

HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE 6.24.2019

by Harry Salzman

June 24, 2019

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

         A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my Unique Brand of Personal Service, it is my desire to share current real estate issues that will help to make you a more successful and profitable buyer or seller.

 

 

LET’S TALK ABOUT INVESTMENT PROPERTIES…

I’ve been giving you my thoughts on investment properties for quite some time now and as you will see below, it appears that the national media and real estate professionals are on the same page with me

Local home values have outperformed the stock and bond market over the long haul and those who have added investment properties to their portfolios are seeing significant gains and are likely to continue to do so.

Among the reasons…with home prices, especially our local ones, increasing monthly, there are a number of folks who are cannot qualify for mortgage loans.  Local property taxes are also looking to increase, as indicated by the new home value assessments that recently went out to all homeowners in El Paso County. 

This is putting pressure on the rental market, where there is a shortage of available units. Rental prices are continuing to escalate and there is little sign that this will change.  

While the articles below are from national publications, it’s important to remember to localize…localize…localize.  The Colorado Springs home market is faring considerably better than the national average and while the national median prices are relatively flat at present, our median prices have continued to rise monthly.  The reasons for this are many and include local economic factors such as job growth, sales tax increases, corporate relocation and more.  And with Colorado Springs appearing in so many “Top Places to Live” lists and more, we can expect our city to continue to grow and prosper.

I’ve seen an increase in clients who are either adding to their investment property portfolio or purchasing investment properties for the first time.  And, as most of you are aware, I put my money where my mouth is—I’ve always been a real estate investor and will continue to be one.

As always, it’s important for you to check with your tax and financial advisors before you delve into the investment property market to make certain that this is a viable alternative for you.

If you’re ready, I’m ready to help.  My 47-plus years of local experience comes into play in investment property sales too, as I’ve been investing in properties for almost all of those years and have helped a number of clients do the same.  I can give you the pros and cons of owning investment property.  Not everyone is meant to be an investor and/or landlord, but for those who are willing to invest the time and money, it can be a rewarding.  

I’ve been around through all types of cycles and know the ins and outs of getting a deal done. That doesn’t mean even I can guarantee you’ll get your first choice each and every time because there are just too many factors that come into play in this fast paced market, but, I know how to negotiate on your behalf and also know when to advise you to walk away. Sometimes not closing a deal is a win in the long run.  

So if you, a family member or co-worker are even thinking of looking for an investment property…or a new home for you….NOW is the time.  Simply give me a call at 593.1000 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com and let’s see how together we can make all your residential real estate dreams come true.

 

INVESTORS BUY HOMES AT UNPARALLELED RATE

The Wall Street Journal, 6.21.19

Escalating home prices have not dampened the demand for investment properties as big private equity firms, real-estate spectators and others that buy properties to turn into rentals have increased the share of investor purchases of U.S. homes to a record high.

These purchases made up more than 11% of U.S. home purchases in 2018, according to data released by CoreLogic, Inc. last week.

This is posing a challenge for millennials and other first-time buyers who are increasingly looking to buy starter homes and are forced to compete with deep-pocketed cash buyers.

Many economists credit investors with helping to stabilize the housing market in 2011 and 2012 by buying with cash when prices were low and mortgage credit froze.  Those purchases were expected to slow as the market rebounded and properties could no longer be had for bargain basement prices.  

Instead, the demand for investment properties has intensified. Strong rental demand and low interest rates that make other investments less appealing have fueled investor appetite.

 

SCARED OF STOCKS IN TODAY’S MARKET?  BUY A HOUSE INSTEAD

Bloomberg.com, 3.21.19

This is from an article that I have been providing to my investor clients since it was published in March and I thought you might find it insightful.

 

real estate may be a better and safer investment than you might have thought.  

Based on previous understanding, it has been widely accepted that equities yield real returns much higher than those of government securities.  By most estimates that gap is about 6.5 percentage points; while government bonds might offer an average return of about 1 percent a year, for example, equities return about 7.5 percent a year (the precise figures depend on the data sample). Equities, however, are much riskier, and so there is a trade-off between risk and return.

The returns to real estate are harder to measure, both over time and across countries.  One difficulty is measuring the “imputed rent” return—that is, if you buy a house you also get the pleasure of living there and don’t have to pay rent elsewhere.  But many analysts doubted whether the return to U.S. housing was robust over, say the 1890-1990 period.

The authors of “The Total Risk Premium Puzzle” have constructed a new database for the U.S. and 15 other advanced economies, ranging from 1870 through the present and their striking finding is that housing returns are about equal to equity returns, and furthermore housing as an investment is significantly less risky than equities.

An obvious implication from this study is that many people should consider investing more in housing.  The study shows that the transaction costs of dealing in real estate probably do not erase the gains to be made from investing in real estate, at least for the typical homebuyer.

Furthermore, due to globalization, returns on equities are increasingly correlated across countries, which makes diversification harder to achieve. This is less true with real estate markets, which depend more on local conditions.  Once again… localize, localize, localize!  The Colorado Springs market is thriving.

As I mentioned earlier, a check with your tax and financial advisors is advisable and prudent prior to making any type of investment. And, if a real estate investment is in your future...I’m your guy and you know where to find me.

 

COLORADO SPRINGS JOB MARKET IS ONE OF THE BEST

The Gazette, 6.12.19

A survey by staffing giant Manpower expects to show Colorado Springs as one of the nation’s top job markets—tied for #14 with Provo, Utah--in the third quarter of this year.  

The Springs ranked just ahead of Denver and five other cities. The “net” employment outlook—the difference between the percentage of employers surveyed expecting additional hiring and those forecasting cuts—is projected at 30%, the same as the third quarter of last year but up from 21% in the current quarter.  The survey found that 34% of employers anticipate staff expansion and 4% foresee reductions.  The rest expect no changes.

These results come as our area’s unemployment rate is at 3.9%, a 10-month low and amid slowing labor force growth and continued gains in employment.  Employers in all 13 local industry sectors reported strong hiring plans, led by business and professional services and leisure and hospitality.

So, once again, a note to investors—all these new hires are going to need places to live—and a number of them will be renters at first. 

 

LOW MORTGAGE RATES REVIVE EXISITING HOME SALES

Rismedia.com, 6.23.19

“The purchasing power to buy a home has been bolstered by falling mortgage rates, and buyers are responding,” according to Lawrence Yun, chief economist at NAR.

However, compared to last May, sales are still subpar, down 1.1 percent nationally. 

 

 

“More new homes need to be built,” says Yun, “Otherwise, we risk worsening the housing shortage, and an increasingly number of middle-class families will be unable to achieve homeownership.”

A note to anyone who has been sitting on the fence---with interest rates historically low and home prices on the rise—NOW is the time to make your move.  Call me and let’s see what options are available.

 

 

 

 

HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE 6.10.2019

by Harry Salzman

June 10, 2019

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

         A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my Unique Brand of Personal Service, it is my desire to share current real estate issues that will help to make you a more successful and profitable buyer or seller.

 

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LOTS OF POSITIVE STUFF GOING ON…

Let me begin by saying I haven’t forgotten you.  The reason you haven’t received my e-Newsletter for a month is because my editor has been on overload and couldn’t fit me in. And since I’m married to her, I have learned that my priorities don’t always come first!  We should be back on track now and if you’re new to reading this…welcome.  If you’re an established reader, welcome back.

There’s a lot going on both locally and on the national level in residential real estate. I think it’s important for you to understand that when it comes to the housing market it always needs to be looked at in terms of local metrics.  A good example is that while the national median prices are relatively flat at present, our median prices have continued to rise monthly.  The reasons for this are many and include local economic factors such as job growth, sales tax increases, corporate relocation and more.  Our job market continues to improve, with the local unemployment rate falling for a third straight month in April to a 10-month low of 3.9 percent.  And with U.S.News and World Report naming us the “Third Best Place to Live in the USA” once again in 2019, we can expect our local residential real estate market to continue to grow.

Just as important is the local leadership and plans for future growth.  We are fortunate to have Mayor John Suthers at the helm of all this and I have no doubt that Colorado Springs is positioned for continued economic and social growth for many years to come.  

That being said, one thing we do have in common with the national market is our lack of inventory. If there were more homes available for sale, we’d be seeing even greater growth.  I believe the recent decline in mortgage interest rates will help to motivate some folks that have been sitting on the fence as well as those who thought they had missed out on the historically low rates into action. Yes, homes are costing more, but you will also get more for your present home if you are considering trading up or moving to a new neighborhood.  And with the lower interest rates, monthly payments will make it more affordable to sell and trade up or even to purchase for the first time.  That’s why it’s worth considering the potential monthly payment rather than simply the growing housing prices.

I’ve told you time and again the importance of using a seasoned professional like myself when it comes to any residential real estate purchase and it’s more important in today’s market than ever.  With a climate of multiple bids within an hour of a home being listed and offers over asking price, you need a good negotiator in your corner.  

That’s where my 47 plus years of local experience comes into play.  I’ve been around through all types of cycles and know the ins and outs of getting a deal done.  That doesn’t mean even I can guarantee you’ll get your first choice each and every time because there are just too many factors that come into play in this fast paced market, but, I know how to negotiate on your behalf and also know when to advise you to walk away.  Sometimes not closing a deal is a win in the long run.  

So if you, a family member or co-worker are even thinking of looking….NOW is the time. Simply give me a call at 593.1000 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.comand let’s see how together we can make your residential real estate dreams come true.

 

MAY 2019 AGAIN BROUGHT GAINS IN HOME VALUES AND LOWER NUMBER OF SALES

Statistics provided by the Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp, or it’s PPMLS

Here are some highlights from the May 2019 PPAR report. 

Just another reminder that thePPAR report is in a new format and no longer provides a look at the monthly stats for each neighborhood.  However, if you are interested in what’s happening in your individual neighborhood, I can provide it to you through other means.

In El Paso County, the average days on the market was 25 and the Sales Price/List Price was a very high 100.3%.

Please click here to view the detailed 9-page report, including charts. If you have any questions about the report or to find out how it relates to your individual situation, just give me a call. 

In comparing May 2019 to May 2018 for All Homes in PPAR                                                              

                        Single Family/Patio Homes:

·       New Listings are 2,114, Up 1.6%

·       Number of Sales are 1,564, Down 0.3%

·       Average Sales Price is $372,416, Up 4.6%

·       Median Sales Price is $329,250, Up 3.8%

·       Total Active Listings are 1,849, Down 1.9%

·       Months Supply is 1.0

 

                        Condo/Townhomes:

·       New Listings are 271, Up 12.9%

·       Number of Sales are 190, Down 4.0%

·       Average Sales Price is $246,435, Up 9.4%

·       Median Sales Price is $233,750, Up 11.3%

·       Total Active Listings are 165, Up 50.0%

·       Months Supply is 0.9

Spring buying started off slowly across the country as well as locally due to the inclement weather and lack of listings.  According to Lawrence Yun, NAR Chief Economist, the housing market in general is “underperforming in relation to economic performance, with job creation and lower mortgage rates”.

However, I believe it will pick up locally and those who are looking to move and trade up will have plenty of takers for their present home.  The days of multiple offers, many accepted almost immediately after listing, are still here and it’s making things difficult—especially for first time buyers. 

If a newly constructed home is in your future, I can assist here, too.  I’m familiar with most of the new construction in the city and can help you with site and plan selection as well as helping you find the best financing for your individual needs.  And—did I mention that I provide that all at no additional cost to you?  

And now a look at more statistics…

 

MAY 2019 LOCAL MARKET UPDATE AND MONTHLY INDICATORS ILLUSTRATE OUR LOCAL TRENDS IN DETAIL

Colorado Association of REALTORS® ,Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp, or it’s PPMLS

Providing greater detail than the above report, this provides information on both Colorado Springs and Teller counties for residential real estate.  

It is broken down by geographical areas and you can look to see how your geographic area is doing in terms of sales, prices, and more.  

The “Activity Snapshot” for all residential properties in El Paso and Teller counties shows the Year to Date one-year change:  

  • Sold Listings for All Properties were Down 1.8%
  • Median Sales Price for All Properties was Up 4.9%
  • Active Listings on All Properties were Down 11.6%

You can click here to read the 16-page Monthly Indicators or click here to get specific information on the geographic area of your choice from the 18-page Local Market Update. I recommend that you check out your own area or one that you are considering, to get a good idea of the local pulse. As an example, here is a detailed report on El Paso County:   

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UCCS ECONOMIC FORUM REPORT SHOWS INCREASED CONSUMER CONFIDENCE

UCCS Economic Forum, College of Business, updated 5.30.19

As always, I like to share with you the updated reports I receive due to my sponsorship of the UCCS Economic Forum.  These reports show in graphic form the “Big Picture” of the U.S. in general as well as the local outlook.

Included in the local statistics are: Local Employment/Wages and other employment factors as well as demographics of Population Growth, real estate Sales, Tourism and more.

Click here to view this informative report can be seen in its entirety. If you have any questions, please give me a holler.

And more importantly, please be sure to save the date--October 10, 2019--for the always sold out UCCS Economic Forumto be held at the ENT Center.  More details to follow in future e-Newsletters.

 

MORTGAGE RATES FALL BELOW 4%, CREATING OPPORTUNITIES THAT SOME THOUGHT WERE GONE FOREVER

The Wall Street Journal, 5.31.19

Great news as I mentioned earlier.  Mortgage rates are at their lowest in a long time and locally we saw them drop to 3.25% for a 30-year, fixed-rate FHA/VA loan on Friday, June 7, 2019. What this means to you is that, while homes prices continue to rise locally, a drop in mortgage interest rates equals a lower monthly payment than you might have had to pay even a month ago!  

With the economy continuing to hold steady, it’s anyone’s guess how long these rates will be in effect, but they are here now.  If you’ve even considered a move, now is the time to see if we can put your needs, wants and budget to work and make this dream a reality. Call me today and let’s get started.

 

COLORADO SPRINGS RESIDENTS SEE HIGHER CREDIT SCORES IN 2019

The Colorado Springs Business Journal, 5.16.19

More than half—51.6 percent—of Colorado Springs residents improved their credit scores between the first quarter of 2018 and the first quarter of 2019 according to a recent report by Lending Tree, an online lending marketplace.

Colorado Springs had the eighth-highest rate of residents who raised their credit scares over the last year, with nearly 30 percent of people seeing their scores rise at least 25 points, 16.8 percent rose at least 50 points, 8.5 percent saw a 75 percent improvement and approximately 4 percent saw their scores increase by more than 100 points, the study found.

What this means is that more and more folks here can qualify for the best rates on mortgage loans and that translates into real dollars when it comes to monthly payments.  

“Increasing your credit score is a slow and steady process. It takes time for these changes to accumulate over time, and for negative information to drop off your credit report,” the report states.  “But if you are consistent with these steps, the results of our study show that you can increase your credit score over time—and indeed, many people are successful in doing so.”

Bravo to us!

 

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Harry A Salzman
Salzman Real Estate Services
5475 Tech Center Drive, Suite 300
Colorado Springs CO 80919
719-593-1000 or Toll Free: 800-677-MOVE(6683)
Cell: 719-231-1285
Fax: 719-548-9357

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