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Mayes Harris Team: RE/MAX National Housing Report for December 2018

by Mayes Harris Team

DENVER – December’s declining home sales and growing inventory solidified 2018 as the year the red-hot seller’s market moved toward a balanced market. Price growth also moderated, though December was the 33rd consecutive month of year-over-year increases in home prices, according to the RE/MAX National Housing Report, which includes 53 metro areas.
 
December’s year-over-year decline in home sales of 12.1% set a December record in the 10-year history of the report and also marked the fifth consecutive month that home sales were lower than 2017.  December was 2018’s 10th month of year-over-year declines in home sales with only April and July topping 2017 sales.
 
Most telling was December’s 4.6% growth in inventory, which was also a report record. December’s year-over-year inventory increase marked the third consecutive month of growth – a trend reversing a decade-long streak of year-over-year inventory declines.
 
“December’s inventory gain, continuing the three-month growth trend, is welcome news,” said RE/MAX CEO Adam Contos. “The market remains choppy and there’s still a long way to go, but these gains represent steps toward a balanced market, which in the long run is healthy for both buyers and sellers.”
 
While 54 Days on Market was a record low for December sold Listings, the 4.1 Months Supply of Inventory was higher than December 2017’s 3.7 months and ahead of November 2018’s 3.9 months supply.
 
Home buyers paid record amounts throughout 2018 as prices grew year-over-year in every month last year, led by June’s Median Sold Price of $258,500 – an all-time report high. Even so, December’s year-over-year increase of 2.1% was 2018’s smallest, and far lower than the 8.1% price growth from December 2016 to December 2017.
 
“Home sales have cooled, especially during the second half of 2018, but that was inevitable given the strong seller’s market that has persisted for nearly a decade,” Contos said. “We believe sales activity can pick back up if the pace of price escalation continues to moderate, interest rates tick further downward, and wage growth continues.”
 
Closed Transactions 
Of the 53 metro areas surveyed in December 2018, the overall average number of home sales is down -8.5% compared to November 2018, and down -12.1% compared to December 2017. None of the 53 metro areas experienced an increase in sales year-over-year.
 
Median Sales Price – Median of 53 metro median prices
In December 2018, the median of all 53 metro Median Sales Prices was $240,000, up 2.1% from November 2018, and up +2.1% from December 2017. Eight metro areas saw a year-over-year decrease in Median Sales Price, including Honolulu, HI, -7.7%, Birmingham, AL, -4.6%, and Billings, MT, -2.6%. Five metro areas increased year-over-year by double-digit percentages, with the largest increases seen in Boise, ID, +13.1%, Wichita, KS, +11.1%, and Salt Lake City, UT, +10.3%.
 
Days on Market – Average of 53 metro areas
The average Days on Market for homes sold in December 2018 was 54, up three days from the average in November 2018, and down three days from the December 2017 average. The metro areas with the lowest Days on Market were Omaha, NE, at 26, a tie at 37 in San Francisco, CA, and Salt Lake City, UT, and a tie at 38 in Nashville, TN, and Las Vegas, NV. The highest Days on Market averages were in Trenton, NJ, at 113, a tie at 90 in Augusta, ME, and Hartford, CT, and Burlington, VT, at 88. Days on Market is the number of days between when a home is first listed in an MLS and a sales contract is signed.
 
Months Supply of Inventory – Average of 53 metro areas
The number of homes for sale in December 2018 was down -10.8% from November 2018 and up +4.6% from December 2017. Based on the rate of home sales in December, the Months Supply of Inventory increased to 4.1 from 3.9 in November 2018 and increased compared to December 2017 at 3.7. In December 2018, four of the 53 metro areas surveyed reported a months supply over six, including Miami, FL, at 10.9 and Augusta, ME, at 8.9, which is typically considered a buyer’s market. The markets with the lowest Months Supply of Inventory are San Francisco, CA, at 1.8, Denver, CO, at 2.1, and Minneapolis, MN, at 2.2.
 

 

Top 7 New Year's Resolutions for Sellers

by Mayes Harris Team

With the start of the New Year, thoughts naturally turn to change. If one of your New Year’s Resolutions is to sell your home, then making the right resolutions can help you sell your home quickly and for the best possible return.

Top 7 New Year’s Resolutions for Home Sellers

  1. Move Up Spring Cleaning – Time to do your spring cleaning now. Declutter, depersonalize and make the home look roomier.
  2. Stage Your Home – Whether you hire someone or do it yourself, this is the time to rearrange your furniture to make your rooms look bigger and brighter.
  3. Think it Through – Before you spend money on renovations and upgrades, think carefully and don’t overspend by guessing.
  4. Take Care of Neglected Repairs – This is a great time to hire a handyman or break out the tool belt to take care of deferred maintenance and take care of minor repairs.
  5. Interview Real Estate Agents – Hiring a real estate agent is critical to your success. Take the time to interview a number of agents and choose the right one for your needs.
  6. Check out the Competition – Go see homes listed for sale in your area and adjust your timing, staging, and pricing based on the market.
  7. Prepare Mentally – Selling a home can be stressful. Be prepared for low offers, picky buyers, drop-by agents, and odd terms. Prepare yourself now so you will take them in stride when you’re on the market

Top 5 Rooms to Remodel in 2019

by Mayes Harris Team

With the popularity of the home remodeling shows, homeowners across the country are anxious to take out their toolbox and remodel their home too. Most often, remodels are better suited to professionals however, and this can cost significantly more. Regardless of the method, remodeling projects are not inexpensive, so making the best impact for the cost is important. Here are the top 5 rooms to remodel in 2019.

  1. Kitchen – Always a great return on investment. From functional spaces to bona find living areas, add extra seating, lighting and entertaining spaces such as a bar or counter.
  2. Backyard Kitchen/Family Room – The backyard is an extension of the interior. Section off areas for an outdoor kitchen and family room. Add a fireplace or even a TV.
  3. Master Bedroom – Always a place to retreat and refresh. Master bedrooms are getting makeovers with calm soothing paint colors, large picture windows and balconies or patios.
  4. Guest Bathroom – While not often the first thought, a powder room is easy to remodel and gives a great impression. Make the space look larger with a monotone color scheme.
  5. Bonus Room/Media Room – Create a unique family space with a media room or bonus room. Extra space which will bring more than its share of cost when selling.

Market Report October Update: Mecklenburg County

by Mayes Harris Team

Time to do a quick review of the real estate market in Mecklenburg County for October of 2018. Hard to believe we are nearing the end of yet another year. It went fast, didn't it?!

Let's take a look at the summary of a year-over-year comparison for real estate activity in Mecklenburg County starting with October's new Listings. There were 1,958 new Listings in October 2018, which was an 8.1 percent increase from October 2017 where there were 1,811 new Listings.

The median sales price was $250,000 in October 2018, which was a 7.3 percent increase from October 2017, where it was $233,000.

The days on market until sale increased by 6.5 percent to 33 days in October 2018. In the year previous, October 2017, it was 31 days on market until sale.

Here's a nice visual graph which shows a good summarization of year over year changes for Mecklenburg County. New Listings up 8.1 percent, closed sales down 13.6 percent, median sales price up 7.3 percent and months supply of homes increased by 5 percent.

The median sales price chart below shows the direction of the market in an upward motion from 2013 onward. 

If you would like to discuss listing your home or anything about the local real estate market, don't hesitate to reach out. That's what we're here for. 

Why Should I Consider Staging My Home?

by Mayes Harris Team


It is a question that sellers often contemplate and that is, "Why I should I spend money to stage my home?" Ask most any real estate professional that question and they will usually give you several reasons why and here are my top 5 reasons.

1. Staging doesn't have to cost you a lot of money, but the return in investment is why people choose to move forward with the action of home staging. If you hire a certified stager your return can be an average of 10 percent better in the final sales price than a non-staged home. 10 percent can definitely add up!!

2. Buyers are able to visualize living in a home if it is staged because certified home stagers know just how to present the home at a non-emotional level which is hard for the homeowners to do. When buyers can visualize living in the home then the offer is more likely to be written.

3. Online marketing will stand out better. Online marketing has become very powerful in selling homes these days and good photography is essential. So a staged home assures that the photography will be top notch and the first impression will be a good one!

4. Staging will actually help buyers overlook nonessential flaws on the home that they might otherwise be drawn to in a non-staged environment. 

5. Homes that are staged sell FASTER! 

Seventy-seven percent of buyers’ agents said staging a home made it easier for a buyer to visualize the property as a future home. NAR RESEARCH REPORT

So sell faster. Sell for more money. Look nicer. That's about it! Contact me if you need help or real estate advice. 

Gina Mayes Harris
RE/MAX Metro

 

The 4 Factors That Determine The Length of Time A Home Is On The Market

by Mayes Harris Team

There are 4 factors which directly impact the length of time a home sits on the market and they are the following:

1. Condition

2. Price 

3. Terms

4. Realtor©

Location is not something you can control, but it will have an impact on your home's listing price. Let's discuss the 4 factors you can control.

Condition - The condition of the home/property. Has their been upgrades? Is the decor dated or is that up-to-date? What renovations have their been? When was it painted last? How's the landscape? So many things to factor in.

Pricing - If it is on the market over 30 days then in most areas that would indicate the price is too high for the current demand.

Terms - What terms can you offer that would make the listing more attractive and more competitive with the other active Listings in your area?

Realtor© - This is an area where you really need to do some research. Ask family and friends in the area who they used. Look at the real estate professional's marketing, availability, and their brokerage. Is it a well-known brokerage? Do they have an extensive sphere to reach out to with news about the home when put on the mls? What kind of visibility will your home get once listed? 

I'm sure you've heard the term that the market determines the price on a home, right? This is true. 

Homes typically sell for the most within the first 30-days. After 30-days a home which is still on the market needs to have a review as to why. Re-adjusting the listing price is probably going to be your best strategy to get things moving again. The price is the MOST important factor in selling your home.

I think that's it. I hope this helps you if you are considering selling your home or if your home is currently on the market and you are wondering why it is STILL on the market. 

 

September 2018 RE/MAX National Housing Report

by Mayes Harris Team

The RE/MAX National Housing Report for September 2018 showed the trends of fewer closings and stabilizing inventory continued through September, punctuated by a surprisingly big 11.6% year-over-year drop in home sales. At the same time, the RE/MAX National Housing Report for September 2018 posted a Median Sales Price of $241,000 that marked the 30th consecutive month of year-over-year price increases. It is the highest September price in the 10-year history of the report. 
 
The decline in home sales year-over-year was the largest since May of 2011, as September became the seventh month of 2018 to record lower sales than 2017. Even so, year-to-date 2018 home sales resemble 2017’s.
 
“The big drop in September closings catches your attention. The market is clearly rebalancing as buyers and sellers continue to process the increasing interest rate environment and what that means to them,” said RE/MAX CEO Adam Contos. “The slower drop in inventory – a visible trend for nearly half a year – further illustrates the ongoing shift toward market equilibrium, and that’s healthy in the long-term.”

Active inventory dropped for the 119th consecutive month, the decline of 4.7% from September 2017 was the smallest year-over-year decrease since August 2014. In addition, the September year-over-year inventory drop was the fifth consecutive month in 2018 to post single-digit percent declines rather than the double-digit monthly drops consistently seen over the previous three years.

 
“It’s a little surprising to see prices staying so strong, but it’s hardly shocking in such a tight market,” said Contos. “The headwinds of rising prices and interest rates amid already tight inventory levels have been crimping affordability and slowing sales for most of the year, but it varies by geography.  In circumstances like these, where the market is tricky to navigate, both buyers and sellers can benefit by aligning themselves with a professional agent – a local expert who can cut through the noise and advocate on their behalf.”
 
Other highlights include:
Home prices rose by 5.6% over September 2017, more than twice the year-over-year price increase of 2.3% from September 2016 to September 2017. That reversed a trend seen in the previous three months, when year-over-year price increases trailed 2017’s rate of growth.
Months Supply of Inventory totaled 3.7, which is the second-lowest for September in report history, second only to 3.6 months in September 2017.
Days on Market of 46 was a September record for the report – three days less than September 2017.
 
Closed Transactions
Of the 54 metro areas surveyed in September 2018, the overall average number of home sales is down 24.4% compared to August 2018, and down 11.6% compared to September 2017. Six of the 54 metro areas experienced an increase in sales year-over-year, including Orlando, FL, +17.2%, Tampa, FL, +8.5, Miami, FL, +6.8% and Birmingham, AL at +4.0%.
 
Median Sales Price – Median of 54 metro median prices
In September 2018, the median of all 54 metro Median Sales Prices was $241,000, down 3.2% from August 2018 and up 5.6% from September 2017. Only three metro areas saw a year-over-year decrease in Median Sales Price; Birmingham, AL, -2.1%, Anchorage, AK, -2.0% and Honolulu, HI, -1.7%. Seven metro areas increased year-over-year by double-digit percentages, with the largest increases seen in Boise, ID, +17.9%, Manchester, NH, +13.4% and Salt Lake City, UT, +11.9%.  
 
Days on Market – Average of 54 metro areas
The average Days on Market for homes sold in September 2018 was 46, up three days from the average in August 2018, and down 3 days from the September 2017 average. The metro areas with the lowest Days on Market were Omaha, NE, at 19, San Francisco, CA, at 26, Seattle, WA, at 27, and five markets tied at 29 –Denver, CO, Cincinnati, OH, Indianapolis, IN, Las Vegas, NV, and Salt Lake City, UT. The highest Days on Market averages were in Augusta, ME, at 90, Burlington, VT, at 87, Hartford, CT at 81 and Miami, FL, at 79. Days on Market is the number of days between when a home is first listed in an MLS and a sales contract is signed.
 
Months Supply of Inventory – Average of 54 metro areas
The number of homes for sale in September 2018 was down 1.0% from August 2018 and down 4.7% from September 2017. Based on the rate of home sales in September, the Months Supply of Inventory increased to 3.7 from 3.0 in August 2018 and increased compared to September 2017 at 3.6. A 6.0-months supply indicates a market balanced equally between buyers and sellers. In September 2018, all but two of the metro areas surveyed – Miami, FL, at 8.0 and New York, NY, at 6.0 – reported a months supply less than 6.0, which is typically considered a seller’s market. The markets with the lowest Months Supply of Inventory are San Francisco, CA at 1.9, Boise, ID, and Denver, CO, at 2.0 and Salt Lake City, UT, and Omaha, NE, both at 2.3. 
 

About the RE/MAX Network

As one of the leading global real estate franchisors, RE/MAX, LLC is a subsidiary of RE/MAX Holdings (NYSE: RMAX) with over 120,000 agents in more than 100 countries and territories. Nobody in the world sells more real estate than RE/MAX, as measured by residential transaction sides. Dedicated to innovation and change in the real estate industry, RE/MAX launched Motto Mortgage, a ground-breaking mortgage franchisor, in 2016 and acquired booj, a real estate technology company, in 2018. RE/MAX agents have lived, worked and served in their local communities for decades, raising millions of dollars every year for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals® and other charities. To learn more about RE/MAX, to search home Listings or find an agent in your community, please visit www.remax.com. For the latest news about RE/MAX, please visit www.remax.com/newsroom.
 
Description
The RE/MAX National Housing Report is distributed each month on or about the 15th. The first Report was distributed in August 2008. The Report is based on MLS data in approximately 54 metropolitan areas, includes all residential property types, and is not annualized. For maximum representation, many of the largest metro areas in the country are represented, and an attempt is made to include at least one metro from each state. Metro area definitions include the specific counties established by the U.S. Government’s Office of Management and Budget, with some exceptions.
 
Definitions
Transactions are the total number of closed residential transactions during the given month. Months Supply of Inventory is the total number of residential properties listed for sale at the end of the month (current inventory) divided by the number of sales contracts signed (pended) during the month. Where “pended” data is unavailable, this calculation is made using closed transactions. Days on Market is the number of days that pass from the time a property is listed until the property goes under contract for all residential properties sold during the month. Median Sales Price is the median of the median sales prices in each of the metro areas included in the survey.  
 
MLS data is provided by contracted data aggregators, RE/MAX brokerages and regional offices. While MLS data is believed to be accurate, it cannot be guaranteed. MLS data is constantly being updated, making any analysis a snapshot at a particular time. Every month the RE/MAX National Housing Report re-calculates the previous period’s data to ensure accuracy over time. All raw data remains the intellectual property of each local MLS organization.

The September 2018 RE/MAX National Housing Report infographic shows housing market trends throughout 54 metro areas. The report is based on MLS information, includes all residential properties and is not annualized.

 

We are thrilled to share the following with you!

by Mayes Harris Team

What a day!! Finding out that Gina Harris has earned recognition as a Top RE/MAX Producer in North Carolina for not just the month of July, but also from the beginning of the calendar year through the month of July! The #1 spot!!!

She's an amazing leader and we couldn't be more proud of her. Thanks to her clients for also making this recognition possible. Without the people who come to her to buy and sell their homes this wouldn't happen and I know that Gina doesn't take that for granted. She gives 125 percent of herself when it comes to her clients' needs.

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

July RE/MAX National Housing Report

by Mayes Harris Team

Three Takeaways from The July RE/MAX National Housing Report:

1.)   July Home Sales Rose 1.8% Year-Over-Year
2.)   Median Sale Price was up 4.4% from July 2017
3.)   Inventory for July was 2.9 – The Smallest Ever for July


BOTTOM LINE:

If you’re selling, you’re in a prime position, and your home most likely will move quickly.

If you’re buying, we’ll strategize and be ready to act fast. Getting pre-approved for a home loan is crucial, having a list of wants and needs, and be willing to compromise will help.

Contact us today!

 

How important are good school districts when choosing a place to live?

by Mayes Harris Team

Some wonder if it is better to buy a larger home in an area that may be up and coming versus a smaller home in an area that has a better school district. Although it is a personal choice, remember that real estate is an investment and as such, you should always consider the end game. Let's see just how important buyers consider the school district to be. What sacrifices will they make in order to get into a good school district? 

According to a report from Realtor.com, 86% of 18-34 year-olds and 84% of those aged 35-54 indicated that their home search areas were defined by school district boundaries.

What is surprising, however, is that 78% of recent homebuyers sacrificed features from their “must-have” lists in order to find homes within their dream school districts.

The top feature sacrificed was a garage at 19%, followed closely by a large backyard, an updated kitchen, the desired number of bedrooms, and an outdoor living area. The full results are shown in the graph below.

Buyers are attracted to schools with high test scores, accelerated academic programs, art and music programs, diversity, and before and after-school programs.

With a limited number of homes available to buy in today’s real estate market, competition is fierce for homes in good school districts. Danielle Hale, Chief Economist for Realtor.com, explained further,

Most buyers understand that they may not be able to find a home that covers every single item on their wish list, but our survey shows that school districts are an area where many buyers aren’t willing to compromise.

For many buyers and not just buyers with children, ‘location, location, location,’ means ‘schools, schools, schools.'

The bottom line is for buyers across the country, the quality of their children’s (or future children’s) education ranks highest on their must-have lists. Before you start the search for your next home, let’s get together to discuss the market conditions in our area.

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