Except for the holidays, mid-summer is the slowest time of the year for real estate. If you're in the market now, some great deals are out there since many sellers have been on the market a while and missed the spring selling season, so give me a call and let's talk about your specifics.
For the rest of us... it's vacation time! Here are some good mid-summer vacation ideas I found and thought I would pass along.
Hawaii, Mexico and the Caribbean - Family-Friendly Cruises
It's never a bad time of year to set sail; cruise lines launch new trips and ships perfect for any time of year. Take advantage of the school vacation and plan a family-friendly cruise or the ultimate kid-adventure aboard a Disney cruise.
National Park Escapes
When everyone else is heading to the beach, bring along your hiking boots for a trip to the mountains. Take the kids on a family mountain vacation or take advantage or warm, dry weather in national parks like the Grand Canyon in Arizona, Acadia in Maine or Mount Rainier in Washington.
Amusement Park Fun
Sure, there may be long lines and aggravating crowds, but for many travelers, riding a roller coaster is an annual summer tradition. Brave the humidity and hot weather to mingle with the mouse and his entourage of princesses at Disney.
Lollapalooza Music Festival
Head to Grant Park in Chicago for the Lollapalooza Music Festival. What's not to like about an outdoor summer concert? Most large cities, and many smaller cities have great music festivals, theater int he park, and even movie night in the parks for kids. Check with your chamber of commerce for details and schedules.
Sturgis Bike Rally
Get your motor revving'! Join hundreds of bikers as they converge on campgrounds and bars in Sturgis, SD, for the Sturgis Bike Rally. One of the best motorcycle rallies in US, Sturgis runs during the first week of August. In addition to being a fun social gathering for bikers, the event also includes music concerts and bike shows.
Here's a quick home-selling tip:
When getting ready for your first showing, try to imagine your mother-in-law is about to show up for a visit. Think how clean the place will need to be - like an upscale hotel. Vacuum, dust, mop, wash windows, and even clean the baseboards and other areas you might not commonly wipe down.
People will be looking in your closets and cupboards, as well as under the sink. If there are any odors in the house, those should be removed, as well. Ask a neutral friend or trusted agent who will tell you the truth to come give your home a "sniff test" so you can be prepared for potential buyers.
Unlike the experience of buying a first home, when you're looking to move-up, and already own a home, there are certain factors that can complicate the situation. It's very important for you to consider these issues before you list your home for sale.
Not only is there the issue of financing to consider, but you also have to sell your present home at exactly the right time in order to avoid either the financial burden of owning two homes or, just as bad, the dilemma of having no place to live during the gap between closings.
Five Strategies: In this report, I outline the five most common mistakes homeowners make when moving to a larger home. Knowledge of these five mistakes, and the strategies to overcome them, will help you make informed choices before you put your existing home on the market.
1. Rose-coloured glasses
Most of us dream of improving our lifestyle and moving to a larger home. The problem is that there's sometimes a discrepancy between our hearts and our bank accounts. You drive by a home that you fall in love with only to find that it's more than what you are willing to pay. Most homeowners get caught in this hit and miss strategy of house hunting when there's a much easier way of going about the process. For example, find out if your agent offers a Buyer Profile System or "House Hunting Service," which takes the guess work away and helps put you in a home of your dreams. This type of program will cross-match your criteria with ALL available homes on the market and supply you with printed or e-mailed information on an on-going basis. A program like this helps homeowners take off the rose-coloured glasses and, affordably, move into the home of their dreams.
2. Failing to make the necessary improvements
If you want to get the best price for the home you're selling, there will certainly be things you can do to enhance it in a prospective buyer's eyes. These fix-ups don't necessarily have to be expensive. But even if you do have to make a minor investment, it will often come back to you ten-fold in the price you are able to get when you sell. It's very important that these improvements be made before you put your home on the market. If cash is tight, investigate an equity loan that you can repay on closing.
3. Not selling first
You should plan to sell before you buy. This way you will not find yourself at a disadvantage at the negotiating table, feeling pressured to accept an offer that is below market value because you have to meet a purchase deadline. If you've already sold your home, you can buy your next one with no strings attached. If you do get a tempting offer on your home but haven't made significant headway on finding your next home, you might want to put in a contingency clause in the sales contract which gives you a reasonable time to find a home to buy. If the market is slow and you find your home is not selling quickly as you anticipated, another option could be renting your home and putting it up on the market later - particularly if you are selling a smaller, starter home. You'll have to investigate the tax rules if you choose the later option.
4. Failing to get a pre-approved mortgage
Pre-approval is a very simple process that many homeowners fail to take advantage of. While it doesn't cost or obligate you to anything , pre-approval gives you a significant advantage when you put an offer on the home you want to purchase because you know exactly how much house you can afford, and you already have the green light from your lending institution. With a pre-approved mortgage, your offer will be viewed far more favorably by the seller - sometimes even if it's a little lower than another offer that's contingent on financing. Don't fail to take this important step.
5. Failing to coordinate closings
With two major transactions to coordinate together with all the people involved such as mortgage experts, appraisers, lawyers, loan officers, title company representatives, home inspectors or pest inspectors the chances of mix-ups and miscommunication go up dramatically. To avoid a logistical nightmare ensure you work closely with your agent.
Home ownership rates are the lowest they have been in the last 50 years. Yet a large portion of Americans are still renting properties, instead of enjoying a home of their own. Consumer reports believe this is an issue because of a buyer's lack of trust in their ability to purchase. It is still a long standing notion that a buyer needs 20% towards the cost of the home in order to move forward, but this isn't true. With countless down payment assistant programs, and closing cost roll-ins, a home owner could move in with as little as a few hundred to a couple thousand dollars. Which is a huge difference in the time it takes to save up to make the move.
With interest rates at an all time low, home ownership in today's market is a great investment. The money saved over a mortgage's lifespan can result in tens of thousands of dollars, if not hundreds. That's more money in your pocket today. Don't wait to buy when interest rates soar again. With low interest rates, that means your monthly mortgage payments are at a significantly lower cost, as well. With such a heated housing marketing, rental prices are soaring, and statistics are constantly showing that home ownership can be equivalent to your rental rate each month, if not less. Why get stuck in a small 2 bedroom apartment, if you can move into a home a pay a monthly rate that is the same, and get a 3 bedroom house with a great backyard?
There is also a fear that a home can keep you "stuck" or "rooted" to one place, without an easy transition out if you decide to move. Although the future of the housing market isn't easily predictable from location to location, you can always discuss with your agent about buying a home in an area that has a strong turn-over rate when a home hits the market. The equity build up when it comes time to selling is going to be far more beneficial, than if you put money into a rental and decided to move. The money from selling the property can be used to purchase a new home. With renting, there would be no additional funds to transition into a new place.
Now imagine if you were renting a home for $2000/month. If your landlord is renting to make a profit, think how much less you'd be paying on a monthly basis towards your mortgage, if the home was yours. Then you wouldn't be paying a landlord to profit off of you, you'd be paying a reasonable rate, and get to call the property your own. Discuss with your agent and lender the steps you need to take towards home ownership, you might be happily surprised about the type of home you can afford to move into.
The market is hot, hot, hot! With interest rates at an all-time low for buyers, the market has turned into a feeding frenzy, and home sales are skyrocketing in prices. In such a high demand, seller's market, homes are selling for record breaking prices, which means more money in your pocket. If you have been considering selling your home, doing so in today's market will bring you a larger sales price. Don't wait for the market to shift when interest rates begin to start going up again. The National Association of Realtors has gathered data to predict a strong 6 months of sales throughout the United States. And with such a large group of buyers hunting for homes during the summer months, you have a great potential to sell your home quickly, and move on to bigger and better things sooner.
This is also a great buying opportunity if you are wanting to transition into a new home. Low interest rates equate to more savings. You could potentially end up getting a bigger home for the same monthly payment cost when you buy your next property. And with such a hot market, there are more homes for sale, which means you can find the right one.
If you have not already spoken with an agent, get in touch with one to get a complimentary CMA. See if the numbers work out for you and/or your family, and if moving is something you want to do. Whether you are re-sizing, or moving to a different state, your agent can get the numbers to make sure it's in your best interest to transition in today's market. Don't wait and lose tens of thousands of dollars in your sale price!
If you are ready to start your buying or selling process
give me a call at 832-384-4229 - I´m happy to answer all your questions.