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HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

by Harry Salzman

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March 25, 2013

 

 

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

                       A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

 

 

WISHING YOU A HAPPY PASSOVER AND A HAPPY EASTER

                                     

I wish you all a very happy holiday week and hope you will get to enjoy the festivities with your friends and family.

 

 

HOME VALUES UP FOR 16TH STRAIGHT MONTH

 

Nothing but good news on the real estate front again.  Homes values are continuing to move upwards and the list of improving housing markets gets longer.  More than 75% of the 361 metro areas covered by the National Association of Home Builders/First American Improving Markets Index are now listed as improving.  Especially important to us is the fact that Colorado Springs was added to that list this month.  We’ve been telling you that, but nice to see it as “official”.

 

Even Fannie Mae’s Economic & Strategic Research Group, known for their conservative approach, is saying that the housing market is “on a sustained growth path”.  

 

First time homebuyers are continuing to be more optimistic about the possibility of home ownership and their enthusiasm is crucial to the housing market and the overall economy, according to Kevin Watters, CEO of mortgage banking at JPMorgan Chase.

  

With homes selling faster as buyer demand increases, there is a low supply of homes left for sale.  In fact, national housing inventory is now at its lowest level since January 1994.  Homes sales have exceeded listings for the past 25 months and the upward trend in prices continues.  I’ve been witnessing this myself locally--seeing greatly shortened times of listed homes on the market.   That’s creating an urgency I’ve not seen in a number of years.  When you add that to the fact that any discount available on foreclosures is fading along with inventories, it’s definitely becoming more of a seller’s market again.

 

USAToday says that “Homes are selling Lickety-split”— faster last month than in any February since 2007, “as eager buyers met a tight supply of homes for sale”.

 

On March 18, RISMedia.com reported that Realtor.com “recently released its February data on the U.S. housing market, offering valuable insight into the latest real estate trends.”  Their “February 2013 national housing data indicates that listing inventories increased 1.15 percent month-over-month; median age of inventory was at 98 days, a 9.26 percent decrease month-over-month; and median list prices were slightly higher month-over-month at $189,000.  These numbers show that homebuyers are getting an early start on the spring season despite the fact that inventories hit record lows.”

 

“As we enter the busiest time of the year for homebuyers and sellers, our latest housing trend data shows just how competitive the market is with a significant national housing recovery well underway,” said Steve Berkowitz, chief executive office of Move, Inc.   “Looking ahead, we can expect the amount of inventory to increase this spring along with higher list prices as sellers become more comfortable with the market conditions.”

 

Nationally, U.S. homebuilders started more homes in February and permits for future construction rose at the fastest pace in 4½ years.  The Gazette reported that in Colorado Springs, “single-family homebuilding permits totaled 220 in February, exactly double the total from February 2012 and the highest total for any February since 2006, according to a report from the Pikes Peak Regional Building Department. The number of permits issued in the first two months of this year is up slightly more than double from the same period last year to 398.” 

 

The Wall Street Journal reported that existing home sales are at a 3 year high, indicating that more people are listing their properties ahead of the crucial spring selling season.

 

This is good news for those of you who have been waiting for home values to go up before listing your home in order to trade up or relocate REALTORmag, and The Wall Street Journal both report that “rising home prices have helped more home owners make their way above water again, with 1.7 million properties regaining equity in 2012, according to the latest figures from CoreLogic.  The number of mortgaged homeowners with equity now stands at 38.1 million and more homeowners are expected to join them soon.”

 

The long wait is over and the time is ripe, so if you are looking to sell and trade up, invest or buy a new home, please give me a call at 598.3200 or email me at Harry@HarrySalzman.com so I can help you figure out the best plan for you individual wants and needs

 

 

INTERNET BUYING VS. real estate BROKERS??

 

A recent issue of Bloomberg Businessweek carried a story titled “Why Can’t the Internet Replace real estate Brokers?” and I’d like to share a little of it with you.  Below, I have reproduced a graphic which helps explain what buyers want from Real Estate Brokers.   The article and graph clearly indicate that while more and more buyers are using the Internet to find the home they want, when it comes to the actual purchase, most rely on actual Real Estate Brokers to complete the process for them. 

 

With more than 40 years experience in the real estate business, I could certainly relate to all the reasons why the Internet cannot replace a live person when it comes to the actual “negotiations” and local judgments required to make certain that a buyer has crossed all the “t’s” and dotted all the “i’s” so to speak.   

 

The article was talking about how travel agents have basically been replaced by the Internet because most people feel confident that they can make travel arrangements themselves, but that when it comes to real estate investing, these same people are “nervous about venturing out on their own or trusting an online discounter for the most complicated transaction of their lives.”

 

The chart shows you how a buyer might use Zillow, Refin, Trulia, and Quicken to help in their initial search, but that when it comes down to negotiations, most turn to a qualified real estate Broker.

 

* Reproduced from Bloomberg Businessweek, March 11-17, 2013

 

 

COLORADO SPRINGS JOBLESS RATE FALLS AGAIN

 

With January’s 8.7 percentage rate the lowest since March 2009, the Colorado Springs job market continues to deliver good news for both the local economy and residential home market.  According the a report in The Gazette, “the improvement came as more than 3600 area residents returned to the job market, the biggest monthly increase in the labor force in more than 12 years.  The number holding jobs surged by nearly 4300, cutting the number of residents looking for work by nearly 700.”

 

Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach, in acknowledging this progress said, “..while it is encouraging to have growth, we still have a lot of work to do.”  Bach set a goal last year of adding 6,000 new jobs a year to help lower the area’s 9 percent unemployment rate.  “The city is doing its best to create a better business climate by being as business-friendly as possible,” he said.

 

 

JOKE OF THE WEEK

What do you call Rollerbladers who chat on the computer?

            Online skaters.

 

Why was the computer so tired when it got home from the office?

            Because it had a hard drive.

 

How can you tell when an adult’s been using the computer?

            There’s correction fluid all over the screen.

 

How can you tell a good computer programmer from a bad computer programmer?

            The good one always comes through when the chips are down.

 

How do you keep a fool busy all day?

            Put him in a round room and tell him to sit in the corner.

 

Why did the mother always put on a helmet before she used the computer?

            Because she was afraid it would crash.

 

What do pigs put in their hard drives?

            Sloppy disks.

 

 

 

FEATURED LISTING

 

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81 Crystal Park RD C

Price: $169,000

Beds: 2

Baths: 3

Sq Ft: 1556

SEE PIKES PEAK TO GARDEN OF THE GODS TO EAST FROM THE UNIT. QUIET. GREAT LOCATION. WALKOUT TO 18'X10' PATIO AND 10'X18' DECK OFF DR. VAULTED CEILINGS IN ENTRYWAY LR, UL BR#2 CAN BE AN OFFICE. SKILIGHTS, ML & UL FLOORS ARE VERY NICE WOOD WITH TILE IN...

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Harry A. Salzman. CRS, CRP, CNE
e-Pro Internet Certified
Broker/Owner

email: Harry@HarrySalzman.com

Serving: Colorado Springs, Monument. Air Force Academy, Fountain,
Security, Woodland Park, Black Forest, Manitou Springs 

 

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Harry Salzman, Salzman real estate Services, Ltd
538 Garden of the Gods Road, Colorado Springs CO 80907
719-598-3200 or Toll Free: 800-677-MOVE(6683)

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HARRY'S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

by Harry Salzman

March 11, 2013

HARRY’S BI-WEEKLY UPDATE

                       A Current Look at the Colorado Springs Residential real estate Market

HAPPY SAINT PATRICK’S DAY WEEK…here’s wishing you “LUCK”

 

In today’s real estate market, which is moving faster and faster by the day, you need more than just “luck” to make your dreams come true.  Fortunately for you, when it comes to considering residential homes you’ve got just that because you’ve got me.  As your Realtor, with more then 40 years local experience in helping you navigate quickly and in a financially sound manner, I can assist you with all your Real Estate needs.

 

 

A FABULOUS FEBRUARY FOR real estate SALES

 

Wow.  Despite the weather, another great month for the Colorado Springs housing market.  There are positive numbers all across the board.  Local Residential real estate prices have now increased for 12 straight months on a year-over-year basis, indicating a greatly increased consumer confidence in home buying.

 

To illustrate that, here are some highlights of the February 2013 Pikes Peak Association of Realtors (PPAR) Report for Single Family/Patio Homes (Year-over-year comparing February 2012 to February 2013)

 

  • Number of Sales664.  Up 29.2%
  • Average Sales Price---$227,357.  Up 4.6%
  • Median Sales Price---$199,000.  Up 12.6%
  • Inventory of Active Listings--3035Down 5.9%

 

It’s definitely worth noting that the average selling price of a listing received 98.0% of the listing price.  Also, the average number of days a house is on the market is shortening and foreclosure rates are also on the decline.

 

What does that mean to you?  Once again, these numbers demonstrate that now is the time to buy.  If you choose to wait, your housing cost will probably be higher.  Or you could end up in a position where the home you want has already received multiple offers, which could hurt your chances of success in the purchase.  This also means that if you are looking to sell and trade up you are looking at better returns overall as your home is probably worth more today than a year ago.  So it is a great time to upgrade and take advantage of today’s low mortgage rates.

 

To look at the 7-page PPAR Report and see how your area is performing, please click here.   I am available to answer any questions you may have or to help in any way I can in connection with your real estate needs.  Just give me a call at 598.3200 or email me at: Harry@HarrySalzman.com.

 

 

USAToday  PROCLAIMS COLORADO AS NUMBER 2 IN “QUALITY OF LIFE SURVEY”

 

Those of us who live here already know this, but now it’s official.  In the 2012 annual Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, Colorado ranked only behind Hawaii.  This survey is based on residents’ responses about physical health, happiness, job satisfaction and other factors that affect quality of life. 

 

Colorado has consistently ranked in the top 10 every year from 2008 to 2012.  According to the report, residents of these states tend to have lower rates of obesity and fewer medical problems such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease or chronic pain.  They also report enjoying their jobs more, have lower rates of smoking and exercise more than residents in the lower ranked states. 

 

Since relocation is one of my specialties, this is a plus for folks who are planning a move to Colorado Springs.  If you, a family member or co-worker is considering a move here, please have them contact me and I will be happy to show them why this is the greatest “Quality of Life State” in the continental U.S. to live.

 

 

AND NOW FOR THE NATIONWIDE REPORT FROM THE LAST FEW DAYS

 

We have seen stories from various sources indicating how good the Residential real estate Market is nationwide and while we are ahead of most national statistics locally, it’s always a good sign when the Real Estate Market picks up nationally.

 

According to rismedia.com, February’s U.S. home prices signal a solid start to Spring buying.”  While February’s yearly growth of 6.1 percent is encouraging, Dr. Alex Villacorta, director of research and analytics at Clear Capitol reminds us that “this rate is measured against the market’s bottom, which we reported in our March 2012 Market Report.” 

 

RealtorMag and Housingwire both cited another showing of home prices surging: “CoreLogic’s home price index shows that prices nationwide in January rose 9.7 percent year-over-year, posting their largest percentage increase since April 2006.  Capital Economics researchers say “This is set to be another tear-away year for housing recovery” since “house prices rose strongly at the start of 2013 and are likely to perform well across the year as a whole.”

 

inmanNEWS reports that Americans “continued to view housing as a relative bright spot in the economy, even as their sentiment towards the broader economy and household finances limped along,” according to Fannie Mae’s February 2013 National Housing Survey. 

 

The survey also found that “Americans who believe home prices will increase over the next year and home price expectations for 2013 both hit their highest levels since the survey’s inception in June 2010.  The 48 percent of respondents who believe home prices will go up in the next 12 months was also a survey high.  The share of respondents who said that if they were moving, they would buy rather than rent, increased by 2 percentage points to 67 percent.  Nearly half of those surveyed—45 percent—think mortgage rates will go up.”

 

Businessinsider.com reports that “declining inventory has created room for new home construction.  With inventory “down 22 percent from the end of 2011, the reduction has underpinned home prices and created a need for construction yet again.”

 

They also reported on March 8, 2013 that “a positive feedback loop has begun.  Capitol Economics’ Paul Diggle also upwardly revised his home price forecast to 8 percent for the year, up from his previous call for a 5 percent rise. 

 

‘Prices of both new and existing homes are picking up, the latter by over 10% year-on-year.  Indeed, after a couple of years during which new home prices outperformed, primarily owing to builders constructing more homes for the higher-end market, we now expect existing house prices to close the gap. 

 

As more consumers are able to access mortgage credit, homebuilders should widen their offering, while continued investment demand will bid up existing home prices.’

 

And Ivy Zelman was on CNBC yesterday (3.7.13) saying, ‘we’re in a nirvana for housing.  I’m the most bullish I’ve ever been’.”

 

USAToday weighed in with several important facts: 

 

  • “Americans have finally regained the $16 trillion in wealth they lost to the Great Recession, thanks to surging stock prices and rising home values.

 

  • “Rebounds in housing and consumer wealth benefit job recovery”.  The job market is still struggling; however, “the turnaround has helped boost construction payrolls and is rippling to related sectors.”

 

In Bloomberg Businessweek we read:

 

  • “Despite the hit many Americans took, there’s little sign they’ve changed their dependence on homes as the mainstay of their wealth.”

 

  • “..people will put their money back into housing.  The trends look like they’re on autopilot.”

 

  • “A home is what economists call a consumption good; you have to live somewhere.  It’s also a store of wealth.  Unlike other assets, you can’t buy a portion of a house.”

 

Also from Bloomberg Businessweek in answer to ‘Why Is Housing Off the Floor?”

 

  • Mortgage rates are at record lows…
  • …and so are inventories
  • The economy recovers, and panic subsides…
  • …which gooses home values.

 

The National Association of Realtors Economic Outlook/Blog shares the “Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers: Reasons to Buy”, according to a National Economics Research expert.

 

  • Desire to own a home of their own is the primary reason for motivating buyers.
  • Repeat buyers are more likely motivated to make a purchase based on changing circumstances:  both the desire for a larger home and the need to relocate for a job or move.
  • Other reasons to buy included the desire to be closer to family and friends as well as a change in family situations.
  • Among age groups, there was a clear tendency for younger buyers to be more inclined to buy because of the desire to own a home, while older buyers (those 65 and older) cited the desire to be closer to family and friends.

 

Again, what all this means is exactly what I’ve been telling you for the past year.  Now is the time to sell and trade up or invest.  Call me with any questions, or simply to find out what’s going to make the most sense to you personally in this fast changing market.

 

 

JOKE OF THE WEEK

 

Quotes From Our Late Buddy Phyllis Diller

 

Housework can’t kill you, but why take a chance?

 

Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing up is like shoveling the walk before it stops snowing.

 

Best way to get rid of kitchen odors?  Eat out.

 

We spend the first twelve months of our children’s lives teaching them to walk and talk and the next twelve telling them to sit down and shut up.

 

Whatever you may look like, marry a man your own age—as your beauty fades, so will his eyesight.

 

I’ve been asked to say a couple of words about my husband, Fang.  How about short and cheap?

 

My photographs don’t do me justice—they just look like me.

 

Tranquilizers work only if you follow the advice on the bottle—keep away from children.

 

You know you’re old if they have discontinued your blood type.

 

It’s a good thing that beauty is only skin deep or I’d be rotten to the core.

 

There’s a new medical crisis.  Doctors are reporting that many men are having allergic reactions to latex condoms.  They say they cause severe swelling.  So what’s the problem?

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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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