Real Estate Information Archive

Blog

Displaying blog entries 1-3 of 3

Enewsletter - November 23, 2009

by Harry Salzman

HARRY'S COLUMN

 

10 QUESTIONS ON THE VOLATILE housing market

 

Between January 2000 and April 2006, the national average home price nearly doubled. Since then, the average has fallen about 30%. (In Las Vegas, the average has fallen 53% and in Miami, about 39%, where almost ¼ of mortgage holders are delinquent in their payments or are in foreclosure). As the Wall Street Journal points out (Nov. 17, 2009), the value of your home might be determined more by whether your neighbors keep their jobs than by whether your house has ample closet space. The Journal goes on to list ten points you should consider if you are thinking of selling your home:

 

1. Is the housing market getting better?

High-end houses are a glut on the market. Fewer jobs and more foreclosures could keep all home prices low for a while.

 

2. When will housing bottom out?

It depends upon where you live. In the Virginia suburbs near Washington D.C., prices are already going up. In Florida, unsold condos will probably take years to sell.

 

3. What signals should I look for to determine whether my local market is improving?

One way is to measure the inventory of homes for sale. Over six months of inventory usually means prices are still going down. Give us a call and we will be happy to discuss inventories, prices in various neighborhoods and what your best course of action might be.

 

4. How can I figure out the value of my home?

 Call us.

 

5. Does it matter whether I am "under water"?

About 20% of owners of single-family homes with mortgages owe more than their homes will sell for on today's market. Your options: Stay put until the market comes back (You won't be able to get refinancing).Sell at a loss ..Walk away and take the consequences. Again, call us.

 

6. If I lose my home to foreclosure, how long will it take to repair my credit record?

It will be on your record for seven years, but you might be able to get another mortgage in three to five years.

 

7. If I'm renting, is now a good time to buy a house?

Rents are low now and should stay that way for a while, however, this is a great time to buy your home. Low mortgage-interest rates, low house prices and government tax credits are all good arguments to make your move. Give us a call and we can review your options.

 

8. Can I get a tax credit if I buy now?

You can, if you sign a contract by April 30, 2010 and close by June 30 and meet the requirements of the new tax credit. Give us a call and we can verify if you are eligible and we will walk you through the process.

 

9. Can I get a mortgage on attractive terms?

Maybe. Give us a call, answer a few questions and we will be able to give you a good idea of what you qualify for.

 

10. Should I invest in foreclosed homes?

Probably not. To quote the Journal, "This is a pursuit best left to people with a lot of time, nerve, cash and knowledge of the local market."

 

We are fortunate to live in the Pikes Peak area, where our unemployment rate is around 2% better then the national average. As a result, our housing market is much better than it is in most other areas of the country.

 

HOW ARE WE DOING? LOOK AT SALES TAX REVENUES

 

According to the Gazette, Colorado Springs sales-tax collections in October were the highest since January and saw the smallest year-to-year percentage decline since May of 2008. It's encouraging that September sales tax revenue was down only 0.82% from 2008. To give some examples of how consumer spending is going, here are some significant sales tax figures from October, 2009:

 

Some increases:

 

Clothing                           +30.5%

Groceries                         +13.0%

Department stores            +  8.0%

 

Some decreases             

 

Furniture, appliances        -27.8%

Building materials             -15.4%

 

Fred Crowley, Chief Economist for the Southern Colorado Economic Forum, said the numbers are exactly what would be expected as the region begins to emerge from the recession and consumers stop postponing purchases and start breaking out their wallets. "These are the things that come out of it first - the essentials. At some point, everything wears out. All of the economic indicators say that we're at the bottom and we're on the slow path toward recovery"

 

And, please remember, I would be honored to serve as your Broker for all of your residential real estate needs. I want to help you, my reader, make the most prudent and accurate Real Estate business decision.

 

Also if you know of anyone who desires to buy or sell local real estate, or, who is moving in or out of the Pikes Peak region, remember that, with over 37 years of providing relocation and Real Estate services to clients throughout the country, I am uniquely qualified to assist them with the relocation process, including buying and/or selling their homes on both ends of their move. Please allow me to implement my negotiating skills on your behalf.

 

Just click on the icon at the top of this email to listen to my latest podcast. ..And, if you would like to learn more about our Job Loss Protection Program, or, about our CyberHomes Complete Market Analysis of a property, please contact us. 

 

Enewsletter - November 16, 2009

by Harry Salzman

HARRY’S COLUMN

THE COMING YEAR LOOKS GOOD FOR COLORADO SPRINGS real estate

 As we have mentioned in previous issues, the August issue of Forbes Magazine named Colorado Springs as one of the top three cities in the nation for housing recovery. As evidence that Forbes’ prediction is accurate, at the recent Southern Colorado Economic Forum, the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs School of Business analyzed 58 distinct local economic indicators, all of which pointed to the fact that our local economy is well on the road to recovery from the recession.

At the national level, Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for NAR, speaking at the recent NAR Convention, indicated that home prices should show modest growth in 2010, after the worst downturn since the Great Depression. Prices should climb about 4% in 2010, compared to a projected decline of 13% during 2009.

Mr. Yun also predicted a 38% increase in new home sales in 2010. This should be very encouraging news to city planners, since every new home sold generates a significant amount of sales tax revenue. In Colorado Springs, for example, every new home sold contributes approximately $8000 in sales tax revenue. The recent Southern Colorado Economic Forum predicts an increase of 250 single-family home permits in Colorado Springs in 2010. This translates into additional sales tax revenues of $2 million and doesn’t even include the additional revenues from commercial and multi-family permits.

During the coming year, NAR also predicted that mortgage interest rates in 2010 will rise by .75% - 1% (Today, we can still obtain 30 year fixed rates of 5%) and that foreclosures should peak in the first half of 2010. To put all this into perspective, it means that the $250,000 home you are considering buying today will probably cost you $260,000 next year. And, considering the predicted .75% rise in interest rates, the monthly payment on that home will be approximately $165 more per month next year than it would be today.

 And finally, to add just one more incentive to buy now, remember that, if you delay signing a contract on that new home beyond May 1, 2010, you will lose out on the tax credit that Congress has just extended and expanded (See the article on the Homebuyers Tax Credit, below).

Bottom line ……Call me !!!

 By the way, if you are located out of this area and are considering moving into the Pikes Peak region, but are in need of some assistance in selling your present home, please remember that we specialize in relocation assistance, including the marketing of your present home. We would be happy to assist you with all of the various tasks involved in relocating.   

HOME BUYERS’ TAX CREDIT EXTENDED AND EXPANDED

 The big news this week is that Congress has extended the First-time Home Buyers tax credit and has also expanded the program to include repeat buyers. Click here to see the details of this very significant government program. It might be just the ticket to get you into that new home.

THIRD QUARTER STATISTICS ON HOME PRICES NOW AVAILABLE

 The National Association of Realtors has just released the sales price statistics for the third quarter of 2009. The report shows that the median sales price of existing single-family homes in the 153 metropolitan areas represented in the survey declined 11.2%, compared to the third quarter of 2008. The good news is that, in Colorado Springs, the decline was only 6.2% over the same period. This is another indication that our local economy has turned the corner and we are well on our way back to recovery. If you would like to discuss the specific numbers for your city, please give us a call.    

GET MAXIMUM EXPOSURE FOR YOUR LISTING ON LISTHUB

We are pleased with the response from our Sellers to our recent affiliation with ListHub. This new relationship enables us to promote our listings on a wide variety of real estate websites and give maximum internet exposure to our clients’ listings. To see the various sites on which our listings will now appear, click here.

 And, please remember, I would be honored to serve as your Broker for all of your residential real estate needs. I want to help you, my reader, make the most prudent and accurate Real Estate business decision.

Also if you know of anyone who desires to buy or sell local real estate, or, who is moving in or out of the Pikes Peak region, remember that, with over 37 years of providing relocation and Real Estate services to clients throughout the country, I am uniquely qualified to assist them with the relocation process, including buying and/or selling their homes on both ends of their move. Please allow me to implement my negotiating skills on your behalf.

 Just click on the icon at the top of this email to listen to my latest podcast. ….And, if you would like to learn more about our Job Loss Protection Program, or, about our CyberHomes Complete Market Analysis of a property, please contact us. 

Finally, if you would like any of your business associates to receive these newsletters, please send us their email addresses and we will add them to our subscriber list. Thank you.

JOKE OF THE WEEK

 The Three Sons and the Parrot

Three sons left home, went out on their own and prospered. Getting back together, they discussed the gifts they were able to give their elderly Mother.

The first said, "I built a big house for our Mother."

The second said, "I sent her a Mercedes with a driver."

The third smiled and said, "I've got you both beat. You remember how Mom enjoyed reading the Bible? And you know she can't see very well any more. I sent her a remarkable parrot that recites the entire Bible. It took Elders in the church 12 years to teach him. He's one of a kind. Mama just has to name the chapter and verse, and the parrot recites it."

Soon thereafter, Mom sent out her letters of thanks:

"Milton," she wrote one son, "the house you built is so huge. I live in only one room, but I have to clean the whole house."

"Gerald," she wrote to another, "I am too old to travel any more. My eyesight isn't what it used to be. I stay most of the time at home, so I rarely use the Mercedes. And the driver is so rude!"

"Dearest Donald," she wrote to her third son, "you have the good sense to know what your Mother likes. The chicken was delicious!"

The third son replied. “Mama, how could you have eaten that valuable parrot? He knew how to recite the entire bible.”

His mother replied, “Well, if he was that smart, he should have said something”

Enewsletter - November 9, 2009

by Harry Salzman

HARRY'S COLUMN

 

THIS IS THE FIRST ANNUAL "GOOD NEWS - BAD NEWS" ISSUE

 

 

FIRST, THE GOOD NEWS -

 

 

HOME SALES RISE

 

The National Association of Realtors has announced that pending home sales rose again in September, marking eight consecutive monthly gains - the longest streak since measurement began in 2001.

 

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contracts signed in September 2009, rose 6.1% to 110.1 from a reading of 103.8 in August, and is 21.2% higher than September 2008 when it stood at 90.9%. The gain from a year ago is the largest annual increase on record, and the index is at the highest level since December 2006 when it was 112.8.

 

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said the momentum us understandable. "What we're witnessing is a rush of first-time buyers trying to beat the expiration of the tax-credit at the end of the month", he said. "Home values will stabilize sooner rather then over-correcting. That, in turn will mean wealth stabilization for the vast number of middle-class families and lay the foundation for a durable economic recovery".

 

Yun added that strong near-term reports should not be overstated. "We're clearly not out of the woods because an excess of homes remains on the market despite recent improvements", he said. "Although current inventory is getting closer to price equilibrium, foreclosures will continue to enter the pipeline. An extended and expanded tax credit would help absorb this incoming inventory".

 

NO SOONER SAID THAN DONE - HOMEBUYER TAX CREDIT EXTENSION AND EXPANSION IS ENACTED

 

Congress has just extended the tax credit for first-time homebuyers into 2010. In order for the first-time homebuyer to obtain the $8000 tax credit, the property must be under contract by April 30, 2010 and must close by June 30, 2010.

 

In addition, Move-up buyers can now receive an income tax credit of $6500. This should stimulate home sales and motivate Buyers to "buy-now" and protect themselves against the inevitable inflation that looms ahead.

 

There is a maximum qualifying price of $800,000. Single individual purchasers can earn up to $125,000 and couples can earn up to $225,000, to qualify for the tax credit.

 

Robert E. Story Jr., chairman of the Mortgage Bankers Association said in a statement about the extension, "At a time when we are finally starting to see some signs of life in the housing and mortgage markets, extending and expanding the homebuyer tax credit is a critical step to keeping the momentum".

 

SPRINGS UTILITY BILLS LOWEST IN THE STATE

 

Colorado Springs homeowners have the lowest utility bills in the state.   

 

The third quarter 2009 ACCRA Cost of Living Index shows that typical combined electric and natural gas bills in Colorado Springs average $125.20 a month compared to $155.84 for all other Colorado cities. (Denver is highest, with $200.52). Energy bills nationwide average $179.38.

 

Bill amounts are determined by typical energy consumption in each city and rates in effect in the third quarter of 2009.

 

The ACCRA Cost of Living Index is produced by the Council for Community and Economic Research, a nonprofit research group.

 

ARE YOU READY FOR THE COMING INFLATION ?

 

How can you protect yourself from the inflation that will result from the excessive spending that is occurring at the state and national level? Your best bet is to invest in real estate. The value of your investment will rise right along with inflation, and, considering the low-interest rate mortgage money currently available, buying a home right now is the best way to protect yourself from the inevitable falling value of the dollar. Give me a call and we can discuss our current market.

 

And, please remember, I would be honored to serve as your Broker for all of your residential real estate needs. I want to help you, my reader, make the most prudent and accurate Real Estate business decision.

 

Also if you know of anyone who desires to buy or sell local real estate, or, who is moving in or out of the Pikes Peak region, remember that, with over 37 years of providing relocation and Real Estate services to clients throughout the country, I am uniquely qualified to assist them with the relocation process, including buying and/or selling their homes on both ends of their move. Please allow me to implement my negotiating skills on your behalf.

 

Just click on the icon at the top of this email to listen to my latest podcast. ..And, if you would like to learn more about our Job Loss Protection Program, or, about our CyberHomes Complete Market Analysis of a property, please contact us. 

 

 

NOW FOR THE BAD NEWS !!!

 

If you own a home, you should be aware of the proposed Bill, H.R. 2454: American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009  This Act, sometimes referred to as "Cap and Trade", has already been passed by the House of Representatives and will soon be considered by the Senate.

 

Beginning 1 year after enactment of the Act, you won't be able to sell your home unless you retrofit it to comply with the energy and water efficiency standards of this Act. The CBO estimates that, in just a few years, the average cost to every family of four will be $6,800 per year.

 

To get permission to sell your home, you will have to have your home inspected by the EPA Administrator (estimated cost for the annual inspection - $200) and retrofit your home to meet whichever standards are not met. (This requirement will apply to mobile homes, as well). There are automatic standards upgrades written into the bill, and, in addition, the Administrator is authorized to upgrade standards as he/she sees fit.

 

Within five years, 90% of all homes must be measured and "labeled" Unless a current label is affixed to your home in a conspicuous location, you will not be able to sell it.  

 

True, the Act allows the government to give grants to comply with the retrofit program requirements, but the state can set standards on who qualifies for such grants. Thus, the price of your home and/or your income will probably determine whether you are eligible for such grants. As always, middle class homeowners will have to pay for the retrofits out of their own pockets, as well as subsidizing all those who are exempted from paying.

 

Regardless of which state you live in, this bill will affect you. We urge you to contact your congressman and senator and urge them to vote "NO" on this proposed bill.

 

(It would seem that this bill should more appropriately be titled American Clean Energy and Security Act of 1984 !!)

 

 

JOKE OF THE WEEK

 

Doctor: Well, I have good news and bad news.

Patient: Go with the good news first.

Doctor: You have 24 hours to live.

Patient: What?! How about the bad news?

Doctor: I forgot to call you yesterday.

Displaying blog entries 1-3 of 3

Syndication

Categories

Archives

Contact Information

Photo of Harry A Salzman Real Estate
Harry A Salzman
ERA Shields / 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

Quick Search

Listing Alerts

Be the first to know what's coming up for sale in the Colorado Springs real estate market with our New Property Listing Alerts!

Just tell us what you're looking for and we'll email a daily update of all homes listed for sale since your last update. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Get Notifications

Contact Us

Our office is located at:
5475 Tech Center Drive, Suite 300
Colorado Springs, CO 80919

719-598-3200
719-598-4210
Harry@HarrySalzman.com

Contact Us Online