Sellers – When Should You Drop the Price?

When should you drop the price?
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It’s a tough call. Naturally you want to do everything in your power to avoid giving up any hard won equity in your home, so adjusting the price requires careful consideration. The question is – What’s the best timing? How long do you wait from the time your home hits the market until you lower the price – a week, a month, ten days? To answer this question we have to explore how buyers come into contact with your home’s price and then ultimately how they measure it against other similar homes.
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Something magical happens the first day you list your home for sale. Many eyes will be upon your listing—buyers, sellers, and real estate agents shopping for their buyer clients. At that moment buyers and agents make some rapid judgments. Is the home overpriced? Is the home in good condition based on the photos? Is the home in a good location? This first impression will shape how many showings you receive during the first few weeks the home is listed. If you receive very few showings, or no showings, during the first two to three weeks after the listing has hit the market, you have a problem. The market as a whole is rejecting your value proposition. There is only one solution: adjust the price, and the faster the better.
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Why not give it more than just a few short weeks? Think of the real estate market as an audience in a movie theater. As soon as your home hits the big screen the group collectively decides if they like the picture or not. More time won’t change their mind. If your home has seen little or no activity, it’s been decided that your home got a thumbs down. The only thing you can hope for now is that new audience members will trickle in, new buyers entering the market, who will fall in love with your home and nominate it for an Oscar. A better bet is to edit your price and re-submit it to the academy.

There are also other times when a pricing adjustment may need to be considered. For instance, let’s take a look at Joe and Jane Seller’s listing price below.
Competitor Home A: $368,000
Competitor Home B: $349,000
Joe and Jane Seller: $345,000
Competitor Home C: $345,000
Competitor Home D: $333,000
Competitor Home E: $329,000

Joe and Jane appear to be very competitively priced relative to the market. But let’s see what happens 30 days later:
Competitor Home A: Expired
Joe and Jane Seller: $345,000
Competitor Home B: $339,000 (Reduced Price)
Competitor Home C: $335,000 (Reduced Price)
Competitor Home D: Sold
Competitor Home E: Pending
Competitor Home F: $326,000 (New Listing)
Competitor Home G: $325,000 (New Listing)
Competitor Home H: $319,000 (New Listing)

Joe and Jane went from being very competitively priced to being the highest property in their price range. From a buyer’s perspective, their home now offers the worst value proposition in the marketplace.
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This scenario is where the experience and knowledge of the Brandee Kelley Group agents come into play. They will track the rapidly changing market and present you with invaluable guidance on just how these changes are impacting your listing TODAY. Not a month or so ago, but today. A price adjustment may be just what your listed home needs to result in a satisfactory sale.

Contact us today, and get the best real estate representation by trusted professionals in the Arlington/Fort Worth market!
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Mortgage Rates Hit New 2014 Low

MSN Real Estate and Bloomberg announced last week that mortgage rates dropped for a second week, sending 30-year borrowing costs to the lowest point for 2014.
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According to Freddie Mac, the average rate on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage was 4.1 percent and the 15-year rate slipped to 3.23 percent.

The 30-year rate has declined from a two-year high of 4.58 percent in August, 2013, helping support home demand. According to the National Association of Realtors, previously owned houses sold at an annualized rate of 5.15 million in July, up 2.4 percent from June. July 2014’s sales pace was down 4.3 percent from July 2013, figures from the Realtors group show.

What do these statistics mean to you? It’s a great time to buy OR sell. Contact the Brandee Kelley Group today at 817-635-1141 for expert guidance on YOUR home and YOUR real estate needs, especially in light of these low interest rates. Or check out our website for valuable information on the Arlington-area real estate market, and find out what your home’s worth:

http://brandeekelleygroup.kwrealty.com/sell/

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To discuss rates and the current mortgage market, talk to an expert! Don Kelly is the Brandee Kelley Group’s preferred lender, because Don and his team at Affiliated Bank have indepth knowledge of the constantly changing mortgage industry . Visit Don’s website here http://donkelly.com/ for up-to-date information on rates, application tips, and great reading about mortgage finance.
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5 SIGNS IT’S TIME TO BUY A HOME

Here’s how you’ll know it’s time to stop renting!

Although renting has become a popular option for some people, buying a home is still an important financial milestone for many Americans. According to the National Multifamily Housing Council, renters make up about 33 percent of U.S. households, but the majority — 67 percent — own their homes.

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Almost all homeowners say there’s nothing quite like owning something you can truly call your own. Real estate and financial experts weigh in on five tipping points that often inspire renters to take on a mortgage and sign on the dotted line:

1. YOU WANT CONTROL OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS AND ENVIRONMENT

If you find yourself wanting to put in a swimming pool, remodel your bathroom or make other substantial changes to the property, it’s a sign you should be looking to buy. While homeowners might be willing to invest $30,000 remodeling their kitchen, they won’t do that in a home they don’t own. Renters have no options for improving their home, short of interior decorating. And even then, many rental properties restrict tenants from painting walls or hanging frames, towel racks and other items. If you want the freedom to design and decorate your home without restrictions, it’s time to purchase your own home.

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2. YOU WANT TO LIVE IN A SPECIFIC CITY OR SCHOOL DISTRICT

If you want to live in a specific neighborhood or you want your children to be in a particular school district, it may be time to put down roots. Occasionally, families may identify a particular neighborhood they want to live in, but there are no appropriate rental properties in that area. At that point, buying a home is the only option.

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3. YOUR FAMILY GROWS – OR SHRINKS

People are often inspired to buy because their family has grown and they need more living space, more bedrooms and bathrooms, and more storage. Families grow, and at some point, a smaller family needs a bigger home.

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Baby boomers are experiencing the reverse–they’re downsizing rather than looking for additional space. They want a smaller home that better suits their changing needs. They are often looking for a lower-maintenance home or one that is more economical to heat and cool or a home on one level. Retirees may want to move to a different part of the country or wish to move closer to grandchildren.

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4. YOU FIND A GOOD DEAL

At a certain point, it’s time to stop thinking about “what if” and start taking steps to make the purchase, especially when interest rates start to rise.

If you find a good deal, it’s time to act. A smart purchase now can save substantial money over the term of the mortgage.

5. YOU HAVE THE DOWN PAYMENT

If you have saved for your down payment, don’t be afraid to part with it. Some people reach their goal and then don’t want to spend it! Perhaps they are waiting for the “perfect” home to come along, and they delay taking action in today’s market. At some point, you may have to say that while a particular home you’re looking at may not be your dream home, it’s a good home and it fits your needs. At that point, just go ahead and do it!

down payment

The team members of the Brandee Kelley Group are experienced in consulting with their clients about the timing in making a first home purchase. Our agents know the market, we are up to date on real estate trends, and we know neighborhoods. We’ll listen carefully to your concerns and needs and help you make the very best decision regarding your real estate needs. Give us a call at 817-635-1141 or visit our website at http://brandeekelleygroup.kwrealty.com/.

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For expert guidance and advice on mortgage details, Don Kelly at Affiliated Bank knows the market thoroughly. Don will carefully explain lending requirements, mortgage rates, and all the crucial information you need to begin your home search in earnest. Don’s advice will allow you to approach the real estate market with full confidence in your ability to purchase your new home. Visit Don’s website at http://donkelly.com/, where you’ll find helpful information and videos about many aspects of mortgage lending.
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When Do I Finally Get The Keys To My New Home?

WHEN DO I FINALLY GET THE KEYS TO MY NEW HOUSE?
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According to Realtor.com, this may be the most asked question in the entire closing process!

A buyer usually takes possession of a new home after closing. However, the official change in ownership of real property occurs when the dead is recorded in the county or municipal Recorder’s office. This can take a few hours or a few days after all the closing documents have been signed.

GET THE KEYS BEFORE CLOSING

New buyers might want to move in before closing for a variety of reasons—because they sold their old place or because they want to get a jump on fixing up the new house.
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But moving in early presents a host of issues. First, there’s legal liability—what if the soon-to-be-owners do something to the house that creates damage, or hurt themselves while in the new place? Who’s responsible for damage to property or person?

Then there’s the money angle—the old homeowners could ask for rent, since they still own the place, which the almost-owners might not be keen on paying.
And of course, there’s always the risk that for some reason the sale falls apart in the final hours, and the new occupants who moved in early refuse to move out.

However, taking possession before the closing can work, especially if the seller has already vacated the property. Both seller and new buyer must address early possession in detail, and in writing, usually in terms and contingencies in the sales contract.

GET THE KEYS AT OR AFTER CLOSING
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This is more typical. But exactly when closing occurs varies and it’s not always at the signing of the closing documents, no matter how exhaustive that process.

As mentioned above, you may have to wait until the county officially records the new title. The team members of the Brandee Kelley Group know local laws and recording requirements and they will guide you through this process.

RENTING BACK

If you’re selling your current home and buying a new one in quick succession, you’ve got a lot to coordinate. Some buyers will agree to rent-back agreements, where they will rent the home back to the seller for a specified period of time after closing. The customary rental rate is established by dividing the mortgage and costs by 30 (or 31), to arrive at a daily rental rate to rent the home back.

However, buyers may not have the option of renting back and need to take possession as soon as possible. While renting can be an option, it’s not always possible.

And the sellers can rent to the buyers as well. If the buyers want an early possession, a rental agreement is certainly within the rights of the soon-to-be-former homeowners, and often happens on similar terms as rental agreements after closing, at daily rates based on monthly mortgage costs.

CLOSING DELAYS

Most loans close in a timely manner, but be prepared for closing delays. Many closing delays stem from paperwork and documentation issues. An active market with a high amount of home transfer activity translates into higher amounts of paperwork for banks and county deed recorders’ offices.

From the loan standpoint, delays occur when the bank requires more verifications such as additional credit references, additional paperwork to show income, or a higher escrow amount.

Some paperwork glitch might delay money transfers until late in the day, and then the funds won’t be available until the next morning. Don Kelly at Affiliated Bank is our preferred lender. We rely on Don’s experienced team to address every detail of the closing. He and his team have an outstanding track record of overcoming last-minute potential delays that occasionally crop up.
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In all instances, patience rules. Many veteran homebuyers have experienced last-minute home buying paperwork frustrations. Your experienced Brandee Kelley Group team member’s knowledge of the closing process, together with Don Kelly’s expertise will help you get to your goal ON TIME—getting the keys and taking possession of your new home!
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CONTRACT CONTINGENCIES — LOVE ‘EM OR HATE ‘EM?

Contingencies are common in real estate purchase contracts to protect both the buyer and seller from an undesirable financial burden.

When a buyer writes a purchase offer to buy a home, he not only indicates the price he is willing to pay but also any special conditions the seller must agree to when accepting the offer. These contingencies must be satisfied within a noted time frame specified in the contract before the purchase of the home can go through. The buyer may be released from the contract if these conditions are not met.

Contingencies also protect the seller and allow him to rescind the contract if the buyer does not or cannot meet their obligations spelled out in the contract.

One common contingency is the ability for the buyer to qualify for and be approved to get a mortgage for the amount that’s stated in the purchase contract. That ties in directly to the appraisal contingency–if the house does not appraise for the sales amount, the contingency clause allows the buyer to legally exit the contract without a penalty or he may renegotiate the purchase if the appraisal falls short of the selling price.
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Effect on Negotiations
The effect of contingencies on contract negotiations vary based on current market conditions. The Arlington area is in a seller’s market, and sellers are less likely to accept contingencies that are risky and/or restrict continued marketing of the property if the buyer’s contingency is not met.
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Financial contingencies are standard contract terms. Sellers may accept offers with more restrictive contingencies with a clause that allows them to continue to market their home and consider other offers while a contingency contract is in place. If another interested buyer makes an accepted offer, the clause usually specifies that the original buyer has 24 or 48 hours to agree to remove contingencies in an amended contract, or exit the contract.
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Contingencies in a purchase contract are extremely important, and the team members of the Brandee Kelley Group will guide you through the terms of the purchase contract to make certain your interests are protected. We will closely monitor the dates by which the contingencies are to be met and provide assistance every step of the way.

Please visit our website and read more about the expert services the Brandee Kelley Group offers to buyers and sellers. http://brandeekelleygroup.kwrealty.com/

Don kelley photoAffiliated Bank w Don Kelly Info
Since financial matters are an integral part of the contract details, you also need an expert mortgage lender who understands all the terms of a sales contract. Our preferred lender is Don Kelly at Affiliated Bank. Don and his team have a thorough understanding of the time-sensitive issues related to purchase contract terms.

Visit Don’s website for more information about Don and his professional team, about Affiliated Bank, and to watch Don’s informative videos. http://donkelly.com/

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5 Reasons To Buy A House Now

If you are considering buying a new home in the near future, MSN Real Estate recently discussed the following five reasons to make your purchase before the end of 2014.

1. Home Prices Are Still Off Their Highs
Yes, home prices are rising from the lows seen during the housing crash of 2008, but they’re still nearly 20 percent off their mid-2006 peak. According to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index, average U.S. home prices are currently at summer 2004 levels. In markets that are still recovering, first-time homebuyers could see significant appreciation over the next few years if they buy now.

2. Interest Rates Are Expected To Keep Rising
Interest rates are slowly climbing, and as the Federal Reserve concludes its economic stimulus plan, rates are expected to continue to rise. Some experts believe mortgage interest rates could hit 5 percent by the end of 2014 or the first quarter of 2015. Even a small bump in interest rates can mean a significant jump in your monthly mortgage payment.

3. Rental Rates Are Rising
There is always an argument to be made regarding whether to buy or rent. It’s all a matter of your particular situation – as well as the status of your local housing market. If you are a renter and considering potential job transfers or have family situations that may require you to move from the area, then renting may be your best option. However, if you have put down roots and plan to stay in your area, buying your own home offers many financial and lifestyle benefits.

4. Buying Power
Americans have been steadily reducing their debt load. Maybe you have, too. The lower your debt, the higher your buying power. Creditors will consider your debt-to-income ratio. Mortgage qualifications generally follow the rule of 28/36 ratio that measures your monthly housing expenses and your monthly debt payments to your income.

5. With Lower Debt Comes A Higher Credit Score
As you pay down and reduce your debt load, your credit score will improve. That’s one of the biggest factors mortgage lenders consider when determining the interest rate and terms of your loan.

Overall, if you find that your housing needs have changed and that a new home might make sense, you should strongly consider buying a new home before the end of 2014. It’s unlikely the housing market will look much rosier next year, when interest rates and home prices could be even higher than they are now.

For mortgage information and current interest rates, see Don Kelly’s Affiliated Bank website here: http://donkelly.com/
Affiliated Bank w Don Kelly Info
As always, please contact any member of the Brandee Kelley Group to discuss your concerns about selling your current home and/or purchasing a new home. You may reach us at the office at 817-635-1141 or visit our website: http://brandeekelleygroup.kwrealty.com/

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The BRANDEE KELLEY GROUP Named To America’s Best Real Estate Agents List!

REAL Trends and Trulia Announce America’s Best Real Estate Agents List
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REAL Trends, the trusted source in residential brokerage, and Trulia, a leading online real estate marketplace have just released The 2014 REAL Trends America’s Best Real Estate Agents list. The list ranks the top agents throughout the entire United States, based on closed transaction sides and closed volume. The Brandee Kelley Group is very proud to have been named in this list.

“With today’s release of the 2014 America’s Best Real Estate Agents list, an elite group of real estate agents across the country are receiving well-deserved recognition. These agents are far above average and have built enormously successful small businesses in an extremely competitive field,” said Steve Murray on July 8, 2014, President, REAL Trends.

To be included in this ranking, agents must have closed at least 50 transactions, compared with the industry average of 7. This ensures that only the best of the best are included on the prestigious list.

Why this matters to you, dear friends and clients, is HOW the Brandee Kelley Group earned their spot in this prestigious list.

First and foremost is our commitment to our clients to provide the highest level of service when representing you and your real estate needs. Our team members are highly experienced and knowledgeable about the real estate market, on both a local and national level. We constantly strive for professionalism and ethical conduct of our business. We take classes, attend seminars and conventions in order to stay on top of the constantly changing practices and legalities of the real estate industry.

Our business has grown because of the confidence our friends and clients have shown us by referring us to THEIR families and friends. We could not have achieved this success without you. Thank you for your continued trust and loyalty!

To view the list, please click here:   http://www.realtrends.com/best-real-estate-agents-america#.U8Rm7Iwo7Q0 The Brandee Kelley Group earned the position of #208 in Team By Sides category.

ABOUT REAL Trends
REAL Trends is a privately-held publishing, consulting and communications company for the residential real estate industry and has become widely known as the trusted source for data, news and trends for the residential real estate industry.

In compiling the rankings for America’s Best Real Estate Agents, REAL Trends collected and verified all the data in these reports to produce a completely unbiased and ethical report.

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