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ENEWSLETTER - June 29, 2009

by Harry Salzman

HARRY'S COLUMN

 

HARVARD STUDY SHOWS STAGE IS SET FOR HOUSING RECOVERY

 

In a report issued on June 22, 2009, a Harvard University study states that conditions that could support a recovery in the housing market are now taking shape.

 

"We do see some signs of stabilization, more in home sales and less so in prices", said Nicolas Retsinas, Director of the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.

 

Although housing is becoming more affordable now, the report also noted that the number of households paying more than half their incomes for housing jumped from 13.8 million in 2001 to 17.9 million in 2007.

 

In the long run, the study notes, immigration and demand for housing by "echo boomers" could improve the balance between supply and demand. A related practitioner survey by the National Association of Realtors shows that first-time buyers accounted for 29% of transactions in May and that the number of buyers looking for homes was nearly 10 percentage points higher than a year ago.

 

Also, keep in mind that the recent and projected influx of military personnel into Fort Carson will help keep Colorado Springs well ahead of the national real estate growth curve and will result in a reduction in the local home inventory.

 

So, with home inventories shrinking, low interest rates still available, inflation looming ahead of us and home prices predicted to rise as the population of the Pikes Peak area grows, right now is the time to buy !!!

 

 

COLORADO SPRINGS BUSINESS JOURNAL RECOGNIZES HARRY'S "JLP"

 

The June 26 issue of the Colorado Springs Business Journal featured a front-page article about Harry's recently-introduced Job Loss Protection Plan for Buyers. The article included interviews with home sellers who felt that this new benefit would be a great assist in their efforts to market their homes. To date, Harry is Colorado's sole source for this innovative plan.

 

Harry is excited about the newly-introduced Job Loss Protection Plan and has stated, "In times of economic upheaval, potential Buyers are rightly concerned about the possibility of involuntary job-loss. With this plan in place, Buyers can be assured that they will receive payments of up to $1800 per month for six months, if they are laid-off from their present job."

 

"It's a "Win, win, win, win situation", Harry said. "It's good for Buyers, Sellers, Lenders and Realtors and definitely gives some peace of mind to all parties".

 

 

AND FOR ALL OF YOU SELLERS OUT THERE, HERE ARE SOME GREAT TIPS !!!

 

1. First Impressions count:  How's your curb appeal? Is the house clean and spotless? Remove excess furniture. (Rent a storage unit, if necessary). Stage the rooms. Update cabinet hardware, lighting, welcome mats, etc.

 

2. De-personalize your home:

Yes, your kids are beautiful, but the prospective buyer wants to visualize his/her kids' pictures on the walls.

 

3. Create incentives for the buyer: Ask Harry to provide you with a marketing survey that can demonstrate to prospective buyers that your house is going to grow in value. Take advantage of Harry's Job Loss Protection Plan for Buyers to persuade prospective Buyers that they're covered against job loss for 18 months. Offer to pre-pay real estate taxes for 6 months or longer. Offer an interest-rate buy-down, gift certificates from Home Depot, Family Gym Memberships, etc.  

 

4. Sponsor an Open House and Agent Tours:  Rent a 20 ft. tall blow-up OPEN HOUSE sign. Provide refreshments.

 

Don't get discouraged, if your house doesn't sell right away. Keep in mind that houses are selling every day. Just make yours look like the best apple in the barrel.

 

And, please remember, I would be honored to serve as your broker for all of your residential real estate needs.

 

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 35 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.

 

LATEST LOCAL STATISTICS

 

Click here to see the most recent sales and listings statistics

 

 

JOKE OF THE WEEK

 

I'm really tired. For a couple years, I've been blaming it on lack of sleep and too much pressure from my job, but now I found out the real reason: I'm tired because I'm overworked.

 

The population of this country is 237 million. 104 million are retired. That leaves 133 million to do the work.

 

There are 85 million in school, which leaves 48 million to do the work.

 

Of this 48 million, there are 29 million employed by the federal government, leaving 19 million to do the work.

 

Of this 19 million, 2.8 million are in the Armed Forces, which leaves 16.2 million to do the work.

 

Take from that 16.2 million the 14,800,000 people who work for State and City Governments and that leaves 1.8 million to do the work.

 

At any given time there are 188,000 people in hospitals, leaving 1,212,000 to do the work.

 

Now, there are 1,211,998 people in prisons.

 

That leaves just two people to do the work. You and Me !!

 

And you're sitting there at your computer reading jokes.

E-NEWSLETTER -JUNE 23, 2009

by Harry Salzman
 

HARRY'S COLUMN

 

 

salzman's MORTGAGE PAYMENT PROTECTION plan causes stir in the industry

 

The response to Harry Salzman's recently introduced mortgage payment protection plan has been phenomenal. As we announced last week, Salzman real estate Services now offers an Innovative new program for Buyers called the Job Loss Protection Plan. This new program is patterned after the job-loss protection plans now offered by some automobile manufacturers. Simply put, if the Homebuyer loses his or her job within 24 months after closing and qualifies for unemployment, the program will pay up to $1,800 monthly for as long as 6 months. 

 

As Harry said when this program was announced, "I am excited to be able to introduce this highly-innovative new program to my clients. The cost to the Seller for this protection is $500, but the peace of mind for the Buyer is priceless. It's a new answer to our current market situation"

 

Call us, if you would like to know more about this exciting Innovation in the real estate industry.  

 

 

both buyers and sellers are responding to the MARKET FORECASTS now available for any local residential address

 

Salzman real estate Services has had many requests for the market forecasts introduced in our most recent e-newsletter. Included in these in-depth forecasts for any residential address are:

 

A 24 month real estate market forecast and housing supply projections,

delinquency and foreclosure trends,

local foreclosure trends and timelines,

mortgage delinquency and loan deterioration trends,

historical median sales price vs. volume trends,

neighborhood lending and sales statistics,

average area credit scores,

the local percentages of distressed homes compared to state and national levels,

average local discounts on bank-owned properties

risk from exotic loan types in the neighborhood.

 

When used properly, these forecasts, based on data and analytics, can predict whether the property in question is expected to increase in value, decline in value, or remain neutral. (They even include satellite images of the property).

 

Initially, Harry is offering these reports to local Buyers and Sellers free of charge, but will assess a pass-through charge of $9.99 to out-of-town Buyers and Sellers.

 

Harry is very excited about this new service to his clients. "These reports will help us offer specific property information to our Buyers and Sellers. With this data, we will be able to localize, interpret and advise clients more effectively that ever before. It's another example of the Innovation that must lead our industry into the future."

 

SOME TIPS FOR SELLERS IN OUR CURRENT MARKET

 

Today's prospective Buyers all have a lot in common. In a recent survey, 81% of them said that move-in conditions were very important (Only 7% were looking for "fixer-uppers). So, assuming that your home is priced realistically, here are 5 ways to attract prospective Buyers to your home:

 

1. Maintain and stage: Buyers want to imagine themselves in your home. They don't want to see peeling paint, dead grass, childrens' toys, dirty dishes, or, pictures of your relatives.

 

2. Mention up-front that you'll help pay closing costs: This offer should be included in your listing and on the flyers.

 

3. Offer the Salzman Mortgage Payment Protection Plan. In today's uncertain economy, they will probably be concerned about their job security.

 

4. Offer a Home Warranty.  First-time Buyers might be uneasy about home-ownership and will be reassured by the knowledge that potential problems will be taken care of.

 

5, Respond to all offers:  In today's market, just as Sellers tend to overprice their homes, Buyers tend to "low-ball" their offers. A low offer is not an insult. It might just be the result of their ignorance of the realities of the market. Be prepared to negotiate.

 

And, please remember, I would be honored to serve as your broker for all of your residential real estate needs.

 

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 35 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.

 

 

CLICK HERE FOR THE LATEST LOCAL SALES AND LISTING STATISTICS

 

 

 

JOKE OF THE WEEK

 

Three engineers and three accountants were traveling by train to a conference. At the station, the three accountants each bought tickets and watched as the three engineers bought only one ticket.


"How are three people going to travel on only one ticket?" asked an accountant.
"Watch and you'll see", answered an engineer.

They all boarded the train. The accountants took their respective seats, but the three engineers all crammed into a rest room and closed the door behind them. Shortly after the train departed, the conductor came around collecting tickets. He knocked on the restroom door and said, "Ticket, please".

The door opened just a crack and a single arm emerged with a ticket in hand.
The conductor took it and moved on.

The accountants saw this and agreed it was a quite clever idea. So, after the conference, the accountants decide to copy the engineers on the return trip and save some money (being clever with money, and all that). When they got to the station, they bought a single ticket for the return trip. To their astonishment, the engineers didn't buy a ticket at all.

"How are you going to ride without a ticket"? said one perplexed accountant.
"Watch and you'll see", answered an engineer.

When they boarded the train, the three accountants crammed into a restroom and the three engineers crammed into another one nearby. The train departed.

 

Shortly afterward, one of the engineers left his restroom and walked over to the restroom where the accountants were hiding. He knocked on the door and said, "Ticket, please."

E-NEWSLETTER - JUNE 15, 2009

by Harry Salzman

HARRY'S COLUMN

 

HOLD ON TO YOUR HATS ..IT'S INFLATION TIME

 

In the June 10, 2009 issue of The Wall Street Journal, Arthur B. Laffer, noted economist, warns us that the coming, unprecedented expansion of the money supply could make the 70's look benign. To quote from the article,

 

   "It's difficult to estimate the magnitude of the inflationary and interest-rate consequences of the Fed's actions because, frankly, we haven't ever seen anything like this in the U.S. To date, what's happened is potentially far more inflationary that were the monetary policies of the 1970s, when the prime interest rate peaked at 21.5% and inflation peaked in the low double digits. Gold prices went from $35 per ounce to $850 per ounce, and the dollar collapsed in the foreign markets. It wasn't a pretty picture."

 

What does this mean to the real estate market? Well, to those of us who were lucky enough to be tied into a low-interest mortgage during the 1970s, and who saw the value of our homes skyrocket and our low interest mortgage payments become the envy of all of our friends, it means that opportunity is knocking. If Mr Laffer's predictions are correct (and we believe they are), the house you buy today will become the best investment you ever made.

 

The declining inventory of homes, plus the very favorable mortgage rates still available, plus the looming inflation all make it obvious that, in the years ahead, your investment in today's real estate market will turn out to be "as good as gold".

 

DISCOUNTS, ANYONE ???

 

Salzman real estate Services has just been approved for membership in EC Purchasing. As a result, we can now offer our clients some significant discounts on several major brands. These discounts range from 20% - 50% on the products and services represented by the participating organizations. Some of the companies now offering discounts through Salzman Real Estate Services are: FedEx, Kinko's, HP, Dell, Xerox, Hyatt, Hertz, to name a few. For a complete listing of discounts available to Salzman clients, click on www.ecpurchasing.com.

 

HERE'S SOME WORTHWHILE POLITICAL ACTION, FOR A CHANGE

 

We are often asked why we contribute to our Political Action Committees. The following links explain why. Our real estate lobbyists are working hard to drum-up support for Sen. Johnny Isakson's legislation which would expand the Homebuyers' Tax Credit. The proposed Bill, which was just introduced on June 8, 2009, would extend the tax credit through 2010, award the credit to ­­all homebuyers (not just first-time buyers) and increase the credit from $8000 to $15,000. To learn more about this significant proposed legislation, click on:

 

http://rismedia.com/2009-06-11/senate-renews-push-to-expand-home-buyer-tax-credit-to-15000/print/ 

or:

http://isakson.senate.gov/press/2009/061009housing.htm.

 

 

NEW CLIENT BENEFIT ANNOUNCEMENTS GET A BIG REACTION

 

The two new client benefits announced in last week's enewsletter have triggered a lot of response from our readers. The newly-established Mortgage Payment Protection Program and the Market Forecasts for Individual Homes which we now offer to our clients (and, in the case of the Market Forecasts, to our prospective clients) are both significant steps forward in professionalizing the real estate industry and we are very pleased to introduce these programs to the Colorado Springs area. If you are interested in either or both of these revolutionary new programs, please contact us for more information  

 

 

THERE'S MORE TO BEING A REALTOR THAN JUST SHOWING HOUSES

 

I hate to give away trade secrets, but I couldn't help but get a kick out of a recent article from Inman News which detailed the negotiating process that results in a sale. Titled, "Secrets of a Master Negotiator", the article explains how an experienced real estate negotiator can overcome the common stumbling blocks which crop up in all real estate transaction. The author lists 10 steps in the negotiating process, some of them serious, some of them tongue-in-cheek (for example, "Flinch and Vise", which explains how to "flinch" when an unrealistic offer is made and how to "vise" the prospective buyer into raising the ante).

 

The article reminded me that the difference between an effective real estate agent and a "salesman" is experience in negotiating.

 

And, please remember, I would be honored to serve as your broker for all of your residential real estate needs.

 

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 35 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.

 

 

JOKE OF THE WEEK

 

Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson went on a camping trip. After a good meal and a bottle of wine, they lay down for the night, and went to sleep.
Some hours later, Holmes awoke and nudged his faithful friend.
"Watson, look up at the sky and tell me what you see."
Watson replied, "I see millions and millions of stars."
"What does that tell you?" Holmes asked.
Watson pondered for a minute. "Astronomically, it tells me that there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets.
Astrologically, I observe that Saturn is in Leo.

Horologically, I deduce that the time is approximately a quarter past three.

Theologically, I can see that God is all-powerful and that we are small and insignificant.
Meteorologically, I suspect that we will have a beautiful day tomorrow.
What does it tell you?"
Holmes was silent for a minute, then spoke.
"Watson, you idiot. Somebody has stolen our tent!"

E-NEWSLETTER - JUNE 6, 2009

by Harry Salzman

SALZMAN NEWSLETTER-JUNE 6, 2009 

HARRY'S COLUMN

 

UP, UP AND AWAY !!!

 

You may have heard the old saying, "When are the two best times to plant trees? Answer: Twenty years ago and today". The same advice goes for buying a house. Considering the 4.75% interest rates available last week, that would have been the best time for you to have purchased your new home. Your next best opportunity to buy your new home would be today. Interest rates are still extremely low (currently running around 5.75%). Added to that, our local statistics show that the value of local homes is now on the rise (In May, the number of sales were up 17% over April, average price was up 5.2%, and median price was up 5.1%). On the other hand, inventory, i.e. listings (the number of available homes) is down 21.2% from May of last year. This reduction in inventory tends to raise home prices. The moral of the story is that you had better buy now, while all the indicators are good.  

 

All things considered, it's obvious that the real estate market in Colorado Springs is turning around. As witness to this, Ben Bernanke, Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, in his June 6 interview on 60 Minutes, repeated his prediction that a positive forecast of the economy is beginning to emerge. Because all of these positive indicators tend to lead the market by 6 months, the evidence points to a marked rebound in the local Real Estate market by the last quarter of 2009, as we have been predicting in our weekly enewsletters.

 

Bottom line: BUY NOW !!!

 

Latest Local Stats

To review all of the most recent local Real Estate statistics, click here.

 

 

 

WHAT'S NEW ???

 

This week, we have two pieces of good news and one item of not-so-good news for Buyers and Sellers.

 

GOOD NEWS ITEM #1

 

SALZMAN INTRODUCES innovative MORTGAGE PAYMENT PROTECTION

 

In response to the concerns that some prospective homeowners have voiced regarding the possibility of losing their jobs during the present recession, Salzman real estate Services is introducing an innovative new program called the Rainy Day Fund. This non-profit service will offer a product that works much like a home warranty. The Seller offers to buy job loss protection for $500. If, within 24 months after closing, the Buyer loses his or her job and qualifies for unemployment, the program will pay up to $1,800 monthly for as long as 6 months.

 

In announcing this revolutionary new program, Harry A. Salzman stated: "During uncertain economic times, it is understandable that some prospective homebuyers might be concerned about the possibility of losing their jobs and, as a result, falling behind on their mortgage payments. The Rainy Day Fund will ease their concerns by providing mortgage protection, until they find a new job.

 

"I am excited to be able to introduce this highly-innovative new program to my clients. It's a new answer to our new problems"

 

good news item #2  

 

salzman now offering iN-DEPTH MARKET FORECASTS FOR EVERY ADDRESS IN THE PIKES PEaK AREA

 

Salzman real estate Services is now able to offer market forecasts for individual homes in the Pikes Peak area. These forecasts, based on data and analytics, look two years into the future taking into account inventory, valuations, credit information, loan repayment data, delinquencies and foreclosures. They even include satellite images of the property. When used properly, these forecasts can predict whether the property in question is expected to increase in value, decline in value, or remain neutral.

 

The pass-through charges for these forecasts are $3.99 for a summary report which includes a 12 month real estate market forecast and housing supply projections, delinquency and foreclosure trends, a 12 month value projection and summary information about the property. For $9.99, a more comprehensive report provides a 24 month market forecast and other information, including local foreclosure trends and timelines, mortgage delinquency and loan deterioration trends, historical median sales price vs. volume trends, neighborhood lending and sales statistics, average area credit scores, the local percentages of distressed homes compared to state and national levels, average local discounts on bank-owned properties and risk from exotic loan types in the neighborhood.

 

"Here's a new service that will help us offer specific property information to our Buyers and Sellers. This data will enable us to localize, interpret and advise clients more effectively that ever before. It's another example of the innovation that must lead our industry into the future."

 

I'M FROM THE GOVERNMENT AND I'M HERE TO HELP YOU !!

 

In response to the criticism that they made buying homes too easy, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have responded by adopting a code which makes buying and selling homes more difficult. The new Home Valuation Code of Conduct, while well-intended, requires that appraisers not be appointed by lending institutions. As a result, lenders are encouraged to outsource appraisals to appraisal-management companies (which take a sizeable cut of the appraisal fee). The result, according to many appraisers, is less accuracy and certainty about a property's actual value. In our local market, for example, it has resulted in appraisers from Denver being assigned to travel to Colorado Springs to appraise properties. Obviously, they don't know the local market as well as our local appraisers and the Denver appraisals tend to be inaccurate, too expensive (and, typically, too low).

 

DON'T COUNT YOUR CHICKENS BEFORE YOU CLOSE

 

How soon should you pack up your belongings when selling your home? Sellers used to start packing as soon as the buyers removed all contingencies from the contract. It was usually smooth sailing from then to closing.

 

Now, there are some sale transactions that don't close on time because lenders take longer to approve loans, often asking for an additional appraisal or more documentation from the buyer before they'll deliver the funds. Occasionally, a transaction doesn't close at the last minute. The lender might cease offering a certain loan program. change the terms of the loan or run out of money.  

 

To avoid moving out before you know the sale is closing, build a few extra days into the purchase contract at the time you negotiate the sale with the buyers. For example, ask to vacate the property within two or three days after closing. That way, if the closing is delayed, you have time to reschedule your move, and to move out and clean the house before the buyers take possession.

 

If you are renting, you should have assurances from your lender that the sale will go through before giving notice to your landlord, unless you have a place to stay temporarily if the closing is delayed.

 

The moral of the story: Don't move your furnishings out until you are sure the transaction is closing, or, you might have to move back in again.

 

And, please remember, I would be honored to serve as your broker for all of your residential real estate needs.

 

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 35 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.

 

 

JOKE OF THE WEEK

 

In researching for the enewsletter, we found the following story. For some strange reason, it reminded us of our current economic situation.

 

A white-haired old man walked into a jewelry store on a Friday, with a beautiful young lady at his side.

 

 

"I'm looking for a special ring for my girlfriend," he said.

 

 

The jeweler looked through his stock and took out an outstanding ring priced at $5,000. "I don't think you understand. I want something very unique," the man said.

 

 

At that, our now very excited jeweler went and fetched our special stock from the safe. "Here's one stunning ring at $40,000." The girl's eyes sparkled, and the man said that he would take it. 

 

 

"How are you paying?" asked our jeweler.

 

 

"I'll pay by check; but of course the bank will want to make sure that everything is in order, so I'll write a check and you can phone the bank tomorrow, and then I'll fetch the ring on Monday."

 

 

Monday morning, our very disappointed jeweler phoned the man. "You lied, there's no money in that account." 

 

 

"I know, sorry, but can you imagine what a FANTASTIC weekend I had?"

Displaying blog entries 1-4 of 4

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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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