Real Estate Information Archive

Blog

Displaying blog entries 1-2 of 2

Harry's Bi-Weekly Update 2.18.14

by Harry Salzman

February 18, 2014

 

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

                            A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my 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.

             

                                          

COLORADO SPRINGS VOTED MOST ROMANTIC CITY

Well, now it’s official.  The Wall Street Journal’s article on Thursday titled “The Best Places to Find Love” told us what we already knew.  Not only can we claim breathtaking mountain views, home to the U.S. Olympic Committee and the U.S. Air Force Academy and the birthplace of the song “America the Beautiful”, but we are now the “Most Romantic City in the U.S.”.

“According to data gathered by researchers at Facebook, Inc., Colorado Springs residents couple up in committed relationships at a higher rate than in other major cities.”  Some of the reasons cited were strong military and religious communities along with being a college town and an outdoor sports hub attracting more men than women. 

The article says that “it’s a place where people keep fit, active and social, and the growing downtown bar scene probably doesn’t hurt”.

So, if you’re looking for romance, or just looking to keep romance alive, this is the place to be.

 

NAR PUBLISHES FOURTH QUARTER HOUSING STATS…PIKES PEAK AREA STILL DOING WELL IN COMPARISON

The Wall Street Journal, 2.12.14 and NAR

In a report of the164 largest metropolitan areas by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), many of the hottest real estate markets started to cool in last year’s fourth quarter and suggests that higher interest rates and “sticker shock” pushed some Buyers to the sidelines at year-end.    

Released last week, the report includes every MLS sale in these cities over the past four quarters, as well as the past four years.

The median price of an existing home was $196,900, a 10.1% increase overall from a year earlier, compared to the third quarter 2013 which had shown a median price gain year over year of 12.5%. 

“The largest gains continue to be in the markets that were hard hit by the real estate bust and have seen a frenzy of investor interest during the past year.  Many of those markets, however, have cooled a bit, which real-estate agents contend is a good thing because the price run-up had started to scare off Buyers.”

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said there are two ways of looking at the price gains.  “The vast majority of homeowners have seen significant gains in equity over the past two years, which is helping the economy through increased consumer spending,” he said.  “At the same time, home prices have been rising faster than incomes, while mortgage interest rates are above the record lows of a year ago.  This is beginning to hamper housing affordability.”

“Added housing supply will help moderate price growth this year, and should help to stem erosion in affordability, but mortgage interest rates are projected to rise above 5 percent by the end of the year,” Yun said.

NAR President Steve Brown said consumers need to keep in mind that all real estate is local“The national figures provide useful background, but it really gets down to supply and demand in a given neighborhood,” he said.  “Metropolitan area figures are an excellent gauge of local housing markets, but there can be widely ranging conditions within a metro area.  This is why it’s best to consult with a Realtor who has additional resources and can provide much greater detail on specific locations.”

Colorado Springs showed a 4.5% growth over the same quarter last year; however, the median sales price in our area was $217,600—10% higher than the median price of the top 164 cities.

This higher local appreciation is due to Colorado Springs having lower foreclosure percentages than many other areas in recent years and the home values here didn’t dip as low as they had in other cities.

We are forecasting the increase in housing values for the Colorado Springs area to be in the 3-5% range in 2014.  

For a look at all 164 markets included in the data base, please click here.  As always, I’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have regarding this survey or any real estate situation.

 

MORTGAGE RATES SLIDE AGAIN

Wall Street Journal, 2.6.14 and Main St by Brian O’Connell, 2.12.14

Mortgage rates fell to their lowest level since mid-November due to unease over economic growth in the U.S. and market turmoil abroad drove investors to load up on government bonds, thus pushing down long-term interest rates.

While this hasn’t triggered any meaningful gain in home-loan refinancing, it is causing potential Buyers and Sellers to wonder if they can afford to wait much longer before taking action. 

With most real estate industry observers saying mortgage rates will rise significantly in 2014, to roughly 5% for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, many fence-sitting Buyers (and Sellers who want to sell and trade-up) could pay a steep price for waiting.

As I write this, the current interest rate of a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage is 4.0%.

 

SPRING SALES RUSH STARTING EARLIER THIS YEAR

Bloomberg 2.7.14  and  Keeping Current Matters, 2.11.14

Despite harsh weather across most of the country, the spring selling rush may already be underway as some homeowners appear to be listing their properties to take advantage of the rebounding home prices and improved equity. 

Sellers appear to be somewhat worried about what the spring will bring in terms of higher interest rates and the possibility of too much available inventory or even a possible housing crunch.  

Last year inventory shortages persisted when supply was at a 12-year low leading into spring and the shortage helped boost home prices and sparked bidding wars in some areas.  With new home construction now at a third of its 2006 peak, inventories will likely still be tight this spring.  However, economists are saying that improved home prices will likely convince more Sellers to sell this year, and that should relieve the inventory crunch.

“Rising inventory is the primary reason that we expect the pace of price gains to drop back,” says Paul Diggle, property economist for Capital Economics Ltd.  “Prices are expected to rise only 4 percent nationally this year, compared to an 11 percent gain in 2013.”

How does this affect you?  Well, if you’ve been considering selling to trade up or buying for investment purposes, now is the time to start the ball rolling.  With home values up, most people are seeing gains in their home equity, thus allowing them to move forward on plans to upgrade, or downgrade, depending on their needs. 

Here are Five Reasons to Buy a Home Now Instead of Waiting:

  • Supply Is Shrinking—finding the home of your dreams may be more difficult going forward with no longer a large assortment to choose from.  Homes in the best locations sell first so you don’t want to miss out.
  • Price Increases Are on the Horizon—prices are projected to appreciate by over 25% from now to 2018.  First time Buyers will likely pay more in interest rates and price if they wait until spring.  Even if you want to Sell and Trade Up, it will likely cost you more in net dollars as the home you will buy will appreciate at approximately the same rate as the home you now own.
  • Owning a Home Helps Create Family Wealth—in a recent Fed study it was revealed that the net worth of the average home owner is 30 times greater than that of a renter.  Whether you own or rent, you are paying someone’s mortgage.  Why not let it be yours?
  • Interest Rates are Projected to Rise—the Mortgage Bankers Association, the NAR, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae are all projecting that the 30-year mortgage interest rate will rise to over 5% by this time next year.
  • Buy Low, Sell High—real estate today is “low” in comparison to where it’s projected to go, so if you’re looking to Buy—again, don’t wait too long.

Interest rates are still low but not likely to remain that way and available options are not what they were, but there are still enough choices to satisfy most consumers.  But—if you’re thinking about it—don’t wait too long.  Call me today at 598.3200 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com and let’s see if this is the right time for you.  I can help you make an informed decision based on your personal needs, wants and budget.

 

STEVE WOZNIAK WAS KEYNOTE AT CSBJ’S CELEBRATE TECHNOLOGY EVENT

I attended the  “Celebrate Technology” event sponsored by the Colorado Springs Business Journal on February 7, 2014 and was enlightened by keynote speaker, Steve Wozniak, “The Woz”, who co-founded Apple Computer with Steve Jobs. 

His insight into technology, education, product delivery and company management was refreshing and insightful.  Hearing about the beginnings of Apple Computer “straight from the horse’s mouth” was also a treat.  Below is a picture of me with “the Woz”. 

I want to take a moment here to congratulate all of the companies and individuals honored at the “Technology Celebration” and to commend the CSBJ on putting on such a terrific event.  I look forward to more speakers of the caliber of Steve Wozniak.

                                      

                                      Me with Steve Wozniak at “Celebrate Technology”

 

HARRY’S INTERESTING TIDBIT OF THE DAY

Since the first Winter Olympic games in 1924 through the Vancouver games of 2010, Norway, with a population of five million, has won more gold and total medals (303) than any other nation.  The U.S. is second in gold and total medals (254) but has a population of 314 million, 63 times that of Norway.  This year these nations will again fight it out for spot number one.  

Harry's Bi-Weekly Update 2.3.14

by Harry Salzman

                                                          

February 3, 2014

 

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

                            A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

As part of my 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.

             

                                                    

WINTER WONDERLAND

Now that football season is thankfully over (not going to talk about it, so don’t ask) it’s time to take advantage of this unusually snowy season and head to the mountains.  That’s one of the things I love best about Colorado Springs—give us two hours or less and we can be found skiing, snowboarding or simply taking in the sights.  Just two weeks ago I was up in Breckinridge for the Budweiser International Snow Sculpture contest and it was truly awe-inspiring.  Below are a couple of pictures taken there.  For those of you relocating to Colorado and for those who live here, it’s so fabulous that we can find such diverse things to do in such close proximity.  Enjoy them all.

    

 

LOCAL MONTHLY STATISTICS--HOT OFF THE PRESS                                                          

Statistics provided by the Pikes Peak REALTORS Service Corp, or its PPMLS

On Saturday I received the Listing and Sales results for the Pikes Peak area and January’s statistics were much as I expected they would be.  As I predicted, the new mortgage lending regulations, which took effect on January 10, 2014, are starting to slow down the market.

This was affirmed at the Annual meeting I attended last week of the Institute of real estate Management/Southern Colorado Chapter.  During his presentation, keynote speaker Fred Crowley, Ph.D., Senior Instructor in the College of Business at UCCS, indicated that he anticipated the number of home sales in the Pikes Peak Region to remain flat when compared to 2013. 

Interest rates have dropped about ¼ of 1% in the past two weeks, most likely due to fewer mortgage applicants.  Housing prices are up and appreciation of local home values in 2014 are estimated to be 3-5%, which is certainly acceptable but the number of sales will likely continue to remain flat in comparison to last year. 

Properties last month, exclusively in El Paso County, show that homes sold brought in 98.2% of the List Price.   Single Family/Patio Home inventory as of January 31, 2014 is up 10.2% compared to a year ago and average days on the market is 81.

Here are some highlights of the latest report, comparing January 2014 to January 2013:                     

                        Single Family/Patio Homes:

  • New Listings are 1,214, Up 0.7%
  • Number of Sales are 596, Down 9.7%
  • Average Sales Price is $234,580, Up 3.1%
  • Median Sales Price is $211,000, Up 3.4%
  • Total Active Listings are 3,228, Up 10.2%

                        Condo/Townhomes:

  • New Listings are 141, Down 19.0%
  • Number of Sales are 76, Up 4.1%
  • Average Sales Price is $171,767, Up 19.6%
  • Median Sales Price is $133,000, Up 4.9%
  • Total Active Listings are 352, Up 5.1%
  •  

COLORADO SPRINGS AREA MONTHLY SALES ANALYSIS*

                                                Median Sales Price               Average Sales Price

Black Forest                             $315,000                              $341,108

Briargate                                   $329,900                             $327,257                    

Central                                      $145,000                              $153,570

East                                           $170,000                               $174,258

Fountain Valley:                       $175,250                              $190,428

Manitou Springs:                     $207,500                               $228,375

Marksheffel:                             $237,125                              $238,217

Northeast:                                 $211,000                               $227,471

Northgate:                                $322,750                               $335,017

Northwest:                                $332,000                               $389,405

Old Colorado City:                  $212,000                               $210,254

Powers:                                     $217,000                              $228,570

Southwest:                               $213,000                              $295,740

Tri-Lakes:                                 $377,500                              $403,958

West:                                         $206,000                               $251,000

*Statistics provided by the Pikes Peak REALTORS Services Corp,or its PPMLS.

To view the 12-page report in its entirety, please click here.  If you have any questions, I’ll be happy to discuss them with you.

For those wanting to Sell and Trade Up, it’s still a good time due to the still low mortgage rates and increased equity in your present home.  It is my recommendation that those looking to sell should price their homes realistically and be creative and innovative in order to get more interest from prospective Buyers and to get it to closing.

Rents are continuing their upward climb, so those looking for Investment Properties should consider Buying sooner than later.

As for first time buyers, it’s going to be tougher to get approval, but if you are prepared for the new regulation requirements and have a decent credit rating, the process should be somewhat smoother. 

These are areas where my 40-year plus experience can be invaluable.  I understand the market and all the new regulations and am here to help you make the right financial decision for you and your family. My relationship with experienced, reputable mortgage lenders is especially important in today’s environment.  Call me at 598.3200 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com today and let’s see how I can put this to use for YOU, your family members, friends or co-workers.

 

2013 HOME SALES ROSE TO STRONGEST LEVEL IN 7 YEARS

RealtorMag,, NAR, 1.24.14

With existing home sales across the USA edging up again in December, sales for all of 2013 were the highest since 2006, and median home prices also maintained strong growth, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said housing has experienced a healthy recovery over the past two years.  “Existing-home sales have risen nearly 20 percent since 2011, with job growth, record low mortgage interest rates and a large pent-up demand driving the market,” he said.  “We lost some momentum toward the end of 2013 from disappointing job growth and limited inventory, but we ended up with a year that was close to normal given the size of our population.”

NAR President Steve Brown says that with job growth expected this year, home sales should hold despite rising home prices and higher mortgage rates.

“The only factors holding us back from a stronger recovery are the ongoing issues of restrictive mortgage credit and constrained inventory,” Brown says.  “With strict new mortgage rules in place, we will be monitoring the lending environment to ensure that financially qualified buyers can access the credit they need to purchase a home.”

 

IT’S 2014—WHY AREN’T MORTGAGE RATES HIGHER YET?

Lots of reasons, but mainly due to the fact that the Fed’s tapering of it’s $85 billion-per-month-buying program (which helped keep rates historically low) hasn’t yet affected the current rates. 

BUT—be assured that analysts are still predicting a rise in mortgage interest rates this year.  CNBC reports “Interest rates will rise because interest rates always increase with an improving economy and a strong stock market, which appears to be the current trajectory, though they likely will rise more slowly than some have predicted”.

Again—if you are currently in the market for a new home and are concerned about interest rates—now is the time to act.  They won’t stay where they are forever and all signs keep pointing to somewhere between 4 and 5 percent by years end.

 

HIGH HOPES MAINTAINED BY HOMEOWNERS, BUYERS FOR 2014

In a survey conducted by LendingTree, 69% of respondents have a positive outlook on housing this year and 63% hold a similar view for the economy at large, which may will translate to a more active market than previously predicted. 

These hopes led 71% of respondents to say they are considering selling their home in 2014.

“As home values continue to improve across the country, sellers who have been sidelined due to low property values will start to take action in the market,” said Doug Lebda, founder and CEO of LendingTree.  “Although it’s unlikely that 70 percent of current homeowners will sell this year, it’s a positive sign for the housing market that more homeowners are considering the possibility of moving.”

In the survey, 72% said home prices in their area increased throughout 2013 while 20% said values were down and 8% said they were flat.

Prices rose an average of 10.2% in areas where home values we said to have increased and among those who said the values fell, the average decrease was thought to be 9.2%.

According to the most recent Case-Shiller home price data, prices in the nation’s 20 biggest markets were up an average of 13.6% year-over-year as of October 2013.

These kinds of gains are important to sellers—of the 71% of homeowners who said they are thinking about selling this year, 47% said they plan to sell if they see an increase in their home value.  Only 24% said they would sell regardless. 

These are the gains that are helping my clients Sell and Trade Up—home equity is back and growing as prices increase—so one more time—if you are in the market—NOW is the time to get the conversation started.  With consumer confidence, prices are rising and interest rates won’t be too far behind.  Call me today and let’s get the ball rolling.

 

NAR PROFILE OF BUYERS, SELLERS

RisMedia

A report issued by NAR provided some interesting statistics in comparing Buyers and Sellers who choose to use a real estate Agent vs. those who don’t.

In polling consumers about their home Selling experience, NAR learned:

  • Almost half of Sellers traded up to a larger size and higher priced home and 59% purchased a newer home.
  • The typical Seller lived in their home for nine years.  In 2007, the typical tenure was only six years.
  • 88% of Sellers were assisted by a real estate Agent when selling their home.
  • Recent Sellers typically sold their homes for 97% of the listing price, and 47% reported they reduced the asking price at least once.
  • 13% had to delay or stall selling their home because the value of the home was worth less than their mortgage.
  • 36% of Sellers offered incentives to Buyers, most often assistance with closing costs and home warranty policies.

The NAR’s feedback from For-Sale-By-Owner (FSBO) Sellers indicates:

  • The share of Sellers who sold their home without the assistance of a real estate Agent was 9%.  40% of those knew their Buyer prior to the home purchase.
  • The primary reason Sellers chose to sell their home to a Buyer they did not know without the aid of a real estate Agent was that they did not want to pay a fee or commission. (46%)
  • Approximately one-third of the FSBO Sellers did nothing to market their home and 64% did not offer any incentives to Buyers.
  • The typical FSBO home sold for $184,000 compared to $230,000 among agent-assisted home sales.

In the home search process, the NAR report revealed these points about Buyers questioned about their home search process:

  • The first step in the process for 42% of Home Buyers was looking on-line for properties and 14% of Home Buyers also first looked on-line for information about the home buying process in general.
  • The use of the Internet in the home search rose slightly to 92%.
  • 87% of Buyers viewed real estate Agents as a useful information source by those who used an Agent while looking for a home.
  • The typical Home Buyer searched for 12 weeks and viewed 10 homes.
  • Finding the “right” home was the most difficult step in the home buying process for more than half the Buyers.
  • Approximately nine in ten Buyers were at least somewhat satisfied with the home buying process.

In today’s market, there is a lot of considerations when it comes to Buying and Selling.  One of the most important financial decisions a family ever makes is the purchase of a home.  That’s where a reputable real estate Agent can be invaluable.  He or she can make the process far easier for you and can make certain that all the “i’s” are dotted and all the “t’s” crossed. 

We at Salzman real estate Services, Ltd take pride in our knowledge of not only the local market, but in our experience in getting the best possible results for all our clients.  We look at each Buyer and Seller’s individual situation and help them determine the right direction for their particular wants, needs and budget.  We strive to be your partner every step of the way and want to make your home Buying or Selling experience as stress-free as possible for you.

 

HARRY’S JOKES OF THE DAY

 

Displaying blog entries 1-2 of 2

Syndication

Categories

Archives

Contact Information

Photo of Harry A Salzman Real Estate
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

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