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Harry Salzman's Blog

Harry Salzman


Displaying blog entries 321-324 of 324


by Harry Salzman





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".




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




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: 






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  





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.





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!"


by Harry Salzman






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.






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






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 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."




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).




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.





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?"

Should I Buy a Home Now?

by Harry Salzman

I'm often asked if this is a good time to buy a home. Some clients are concerned that home prices may fall further than they have already. They are assuming that the best course of action is to wait for the bottom in the market and then buy. The problem with this approach is that you don't know where the bottom is until you see it in the rear view mirror, meaning until you've missed it!

Home prices are one factor in determining your cost of ownership, but so are interest rates and financing availability. Even though interest rates have gone up in the last six months, they are still near historic lows. Since your monthly mortgage payment is a combination of paying down your principal and paying the interest owed, if home prices come down a little further but interest rates go up, it could cost you even more to service a mortgage on an identical home!

While a home is a major investment, it is also the center of your personal life. It's important to live in a home that reflects your taste and values, yet is within your financial "comfort zone." To that end, it may be more important to lock in today's relatively low interest rates and low home prices, rather than to hope for a further break in prices in the future.

Please give me a call if I can be of any assistance in determining how much home you can afford in today's market.

New $8,000 Tax Credit for First Time Buyers

by Harry Salzman

For a limited time home buyers can claim a special tax credit worth up to $8,000. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act offers qualifying homebuyers a tax credit equal to 10 percent of a home's purchase price, up to a maximum of $8,000. The tax credit is offered to first time homebuyers, and those who have not owned a principle residence in the past three years. To be eligible for the tax credit, the home purchase must be recorded between January 1 through December 1, 2009.

The full tax credit is offered to buyers with reported income up to $75,000, or $150,000 for married couples filing a joint return. Partial tax credits are available to for those with income levels up to $95,000, or $170,000 for those filing jointly. Contact us today for more details on this exciting program!

If you'd like to learn more about this program, please call me!

Displaying blog entries 321-324 of 324




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

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