Real Estate Advisor: August

 

Real Estate Advisor: August
Real Estate Advisor: August 2016
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Updates, Renovations and Remodels
When selling a home or property, one of the main goals of the seller is to get the highest offer possible. If the market is hot, the chance of getting a high offer is relatively high. If the market is on the cooler side, many sellers look to alternative options to make their properties more marketable, usually by way of a remodel, a renovation or by updating the property. But what is the difference between a remodel and a renovation? Is an update something that’s easy or difficult?

While there are no doubt projects that see better return on investment than others, homeowners have a number of options when it comes to boosting their property’s value. If you’re not particularly ready to put your property on the real estate market, but are looking for ways to help boost your home’s overall value, an update, a renovation or a remodel might be just what you’re looking for at the current time.

Updates

Want to help boost your home’s value but have a limited budget for projects? Updates are a great option for the homeowner that has limited resources, funds or even time. But what’s an update? An update essentially brings new life to your property, and perhaps brings things up-to-date, but it does so without significant alterations to the existing structure or property. Updates that are common in many households are updating light fixtures, installing new appliances, updating the home to be more energy efficient, updating exterior paint or changing interior colors, etc.

Depending on your budget, updates shouldn’t break the bank, but they can help to boost a property’s value or overall marketability. Buyers like seeing updates, especially when they help boost the overall appearance of the home. Updates are a great and relatively convenient way of sprucing up a home without dedicating a huge amount of time and money to projects, and even minor updates can help boost a property’s overall value. Even just repainting the exterior trim can make a big difference.

Renovations

Renovation means to restore to a good condition or make new again. Renovating a property or a part of a property refreshes and revives it. Renovating can cover a number of different things: renovating plumbing or electrical throughout a home or property, refinishing hardwood floors, re-facing kitchen cabinets, adding modern finishes and fixtures to an older home. Renovating a property generally means that you’re making the property meet current market expectations. Renovations, especially of certain rooms, can make spaces much more attractive to buyers but also add considerable value. Kitchens are one of the best options for a renovation when it comes to overall return on investment.

If you’re looking to help boost the overall value of your property, adding stainless steel appliances to a kitchen (or even updating to newer appliances), putting in granite or other stone counter tops, changing outdated cabinet doors and hardware can all help boost a property’s value and catch a potential buyer’s eye. Depending on the number of projects you’d like to tackle, renovations can be relatively quick or take time and cost a few dollars. Again, your budget and time frame will determine the scope of your project, but renovations can add considerable value to your property and provide a large return on investment when it comes time to sell.

Remodels

Remodels require a little more time, labor and funding, and more often than not remodels involve removing or moving walls, building additions or anything that includes significant structural changes to increase utility or appeal via replacement or expansion. A remodel changes the use of a space by altering the structure and the style of a home. Popular remodels include kitchens, bathrooms and even going so far as to add additional square feet to the entire house. Because of how extensive a remodel can be, it’s always suggested that permits are obtained for the work and that an architect and/or contractor is used to make sure any work is done according to current local building codes.

Remodels that help improve a space can increase a property’s value immensely, and in some hot real estate markets could even see a 100 percent return on investment. Some of the most popular remodels home buyers seek: kitchens, bathrooms, and additional square footage (adding rooms) as they show the homeowners invested in the property and took the time to improve it for the future.

Updating a home or property, or choosing to renovate or remodel, is a big decision and ultimately depends on how much time, effort, money and sweat a seller wants to put into the task. But if you’re on the fence of whether or not your property could fetch the highest selling price in today’s market, considering an update, a renovation or a remodel might be the best solution at the current time to get your property to the top of every buyer’s list.

 

 

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Jeremy Wynia

RE/MAX Properties, Inc.
719-213-0893 Cell/Text
719-570-9000 Office Main
wyniarealty@gmail.com
www.wyniarealty.com

http://wyniarealty.smarthomeprice.com

Please give me a call or email me if you know of anyone that might want to buy or sell ANYWHERE in the world. I will take great care of them or find a top agent in another part of the country or world to help them. Thank you in advance for your referral!

Colorado Springs Downtown Neighborhood

Colorado Springs Downtown Neighborhood

 

Colorado Springs Downtown neighborhood is just under 3 square miles.It has a small town feel with big amenities.  Being close to work, parks, food and entertainment it is easy to see the draw that downtown brings.  There is about 7,300 people who live in this area. There are 2 major parks downtown, Acacia and America the Beautiful. Both parks often have activities going on and play areas for children. The Colorado Pioneers Museum and the Fine Arts Center are always a great place to tour if you are looking for something to do.  Downtown Colorado Springs is also filled with plenty of shopping and dining. There is an abundance of things to do here.

 

To view available listings in this neighborhood please click the following link: Downtown Colorado Springs

 

Jeremy Wynia

RE/MAX Properties, Inc.
719-213-0893 Cell/Text
719-570-9000 Office Main
wyniarealty@gmail.com
www.wyniarealty.com

http://wyniarealty.smarthomeprice.com

Please give me a call or email me if you know of anyone that might want to buy or sell ANYWHERE in the world. I will take great care of them or find a top agent in another part of the country or world to help them. Thank you in advance for your referral!

May National Housing Report

May National Housing Report: What the Numbers Mean for You

The home-buying season was just starting in April, with a 7.5% sales increase over March and 3.2% increase over April of 2015, according to the May National Housing Report from RE/MAX. The Median Sales Price in April was $215,000, which was 5.4% higher than one year ago.

Buyers should note: While warmer months are traditionally known as the “home-buying season,” an average monthly year-over-year sales increase of 4.3% so far in 2016 means the market may remain competitive long after the kids are back in school. Work with an experienced agent to develop a buying strategy for the neighborhoods you’re interested in.

Sellers should note: The inventory of homes for sale remains very tight in many markets across the country, with April 2016 inventory 15.2% lower than April 2015. This may mean your house sells for a competitive price, but also that a competitive offer may be needed to buy your next place. Work with your Realtor to figure out a move-out, move-in timeline that doesn’t leave you in limbo.

Learn more about the current state of the market in the infographic below.

Jeremy Wynia

RE/MAX Properties, Inc.
719-213-0893 Cell/Text
719-570-9000 Office Main
wyniarealty@gmail.com
www.wyniarealty.com

http://wyniarealty.smarthomeprice.com

Please give me a call or email me if you know of anyone that might want to buy or sell ANYWHERE in the world. I will take great care of them or find a top agent in another part of the country or world to help them. Thank you in advance for your referral!

6 Lessons Monopoly Can Teach You About Home Buying

6 Lessons Monopoly Can Teach You About Home Buying

1. Patience
MONOPOLY: So your family has decided to play Monopoly? Refill your beverage, grab a snack and change into comfortable clothes. You’re going to be there a while.

LESSON: Buying real estate is a process. There’s pre-approval for a loan, interviewing agents, searching for homes, submitting an offer, maybe submitting another offer, the home inspection, the appraisal, and final loan processing before you get the keys. Needless to say, buying a home can take some time. Instead of getting frustrated, focus on all of the great reasons you decided buying a home was right for you. Staying in close communication with your agent throughout the process will help, too.

2. Neighborhood matters
MONOPOLY: Everyone starts the game with one corner in mind: Boardwalk and Park Place. The highly priced properties have the best returns on investments, and the players who snag them first tend to do well in the game.

LESSON: Location is often a major consideration in real life as well. Home values, your lifestyle and so much more are factors in your neighborhood choice. Work with your agent to learn all you can about the neighborhoods that pique your interest.

3. Keep an open mind
MONOPOLY: Baltic and Mediterranean Avenue have a bad reputation because they’re the cheapest properties on the board, but they also present opportunity. Add a few houses and hotels and your return could be bigger than the one on nearby Connecticut Avenue.

LESSON: Keep an open mind when shopping for a home. An up-and-coming neighborhood may have appeal you didn’t see before, and more value for your budget.

4. Be prepared
MONOPOLY: You’re a Monopoly mogul! You have a handful of desirable properties and a steady stream of income from your houses and hotels. Then comes the Chance card: “Make general repairs on your property – for each house pay $25, for each hotel pay $100.”

LESSON: You never know what card you’re going to draw. But unlike Monopoly, the real world has home insurance available to help you prepare for unexpected repairs and disasters. A variety of plans, customizable to any budget, are available. Some homebuyers also opt for warranties covering potential appliance issues after move-in.

5. How to win a bidding war
MONOPOLY: Trading properties keeps Monopoly exciting. And there are no strict rules as to how a seller determines to accept an offer. Sibling rivalry, bribes involving candy or even business sense can play into a player’s decision.

LESSON: Sellers don’t always accept the highest offer. Writing a letter about why you fell in love with their home can sometimes sway their decision in your favor.

6. The importance of strategy
MONOPOLY: Monopoly is a game of strategy, but few players are inclined to study ways to win. What if you had a coach sitting next to you, advising how much to bid for a property, where to look next, and whether or not mortgaging a utility to buy Boardwalk is a smart idea? You would be unstoppable!

LESSON: Buying a home is an infrequent occurrence; for some it happens only once in a lifetime. Wouldn’t it be helpful to have someone on your side who was up-to-speed on laws for your state, knew which neighborhoods would best fit your lifestyle and offered to help you navigate a bidding war? That’s the value an experienced agent provides.

Jeremy Wynia

RE/MAX Properties, Inc.
719-213-0893 Cell/Text
719-570-9000 Office Main
wyniarealty@gmail.com
www.wyniarealty.com

http://wyniarealty.smarthomeprice.com

Please give me a call or email me if you know of anyone that might want to buy or sell ANYWHERE in the world. I will take great care of them or find a top agent in another part of the country or world to help them. Thank you in advance for your referral!

Real Estate Tips for Buyers and Sellers

 

Real Estate Advisor: March 2016
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Real Estate Tips for Buyers and Sellers
Thinking about starting a home search or selling your home soon? The 2016 real estate season is upon us, and if you are anticipating a home search, or selling a property, here are some top tips to help you navigate the real estate market in your area this spring and summer.

For Buyers

Don’t go overboard with an offer

While you might be inclined to get into a bidding war over your dream home (the market is pretty competitive), don’t overspend to the point where if the market stabilizes your home will have an overly inflated price and make it difficult to resell in the future. If you plan on living in the property for a long time, paying a high price isn’t a bad thing, but it’s a good idea to set a limit on how high you’re willing to bid for a home.

Start your search ready

If you’re already looking into purchasing a home or property, and you know you’ll need a mortgage, you should already be shopping for a loan. Buyers with a mortgage pre-approval are a step above those that haven’t even looked into loans. You can also help your purchase game by having fewer contingencies or conditions that affect the purchase. If you can start your home search with some of your bases covered, and the ability to be flexible, you’ll already be far ahead of those just entering the real estate race.

New doesn’t mean pristine

While we all dream of buying a brand new home, complete with absolutely no projects, it’s quite common for brand new construction to have issues. The reality is that builders can and do cut corners, and the last thing you want is to invest your money into a brand new home only to find out that certain things were not completed 100 percent. If you’re looking to buy new construction, it’s not a bad idea to hire an independent inspector to make sure your new home is up to all current building codes and standards.

Beware of hidden costs

While you might find a home that is the perfect price for your budget, beware of the hidden costs that come along with buying a property. You may or may not have a mortgage, but you will have yearly property taxes that will either be monthly payments or a large payment once a year. If you do need a mortgage, you can expect an origination fee, and depending on the amount of your down payment or you credit rating, you can also expect to pay private mortgage insurance. You can also expect fees by way of the home inspection, appraisal, and in some communities there will be monthly HOA fees.

Don’t be afraid to go outside your comfort zone

Many buyers have a specific neighborhood, town or city picked out before they begin their property search. With the U.S. real estate market being as competitive as it is for buyers, don’t be afraid to look into areas that are developing when you look for your new home or property. Homes and property prices might likely be lower in developing areas, and if you can find an area where new businesses are being introduced and other amenities will be available, home values may significantly increase over the coming years.

For Sellers

Play to your advantages

The U.S real estate market is being called a seller’s market, meaning there are more people trying to buy houses and properties than there are actual properties to buy. Because of this, as a seller, you can play to your advantages: you can likely get away with not paying closing costs; you can dictate the terms of the sale and any contingencies a buyer might have; you can entertain multiple offers and choose the best one for you. But in all of this, don’t try to price your property outside of your area — you want to sell your home, not keep it on the market forever.

Know the best areas of your property

If you’re considering selling your property, there are two room updates almost every buyer appreciates: kitchens and bathrooms. If you have the time and money to invest in updating these two areas of your home, try a basic face lift (you don’t need to go overboard!). Add some fresh paint, clean up the cabinets, and install new lighting or hardware. Make the kitchen and bathrooms pop: buyers always react best to a fresh, clean and clutter free kitchen and bathroom.

Do you have a replacement property picked?

You might be considering selling your home or property — have you started your property search yet? With the market being as competitive as it is, it’s a good idea to start your property search when you put your own property on the market, and sometimes even before. You don’t want your home to sell before you have a place picked out. If you do find yourself in a bind, you can always work with your agent to make the closing period longer. Whatever you decide to do, make sure you start your property search as soon as possible.

Jeremy Wynia

RE/MAX Properties, Inc.
719-213-0893 Cell/Text
719-570-9000 Office Main
wyniarealty@gmail.com
www.wyniarealty.com

http://wyniarealty.smarthomeprice.com

Please give me a call or email me if you know of anyone that might want to buy or sell ANYWHERE in the world. I will take great care of them or find a top agent in another part of the country or world to help them. Thank you in advance for your referral!

Colorado Springs Weekly Real Estate Report

Colorado Springs Weekly Real Estate Report

 

weekly report 05012016

 

The weekly report shows that the market is doing better although houses are still going super fast. 361 sold in the last 7 days! I keep saying, if you are even thinking of selling now or in the future, give me a call I would love to talk to you about buying or selling a house.

Jeremy Wynia

RE/MAX Properties, Inc.
719-213-0893 Cell/Text
719-570-9000 Office Main
wyniarealty@gmail.com
www.wyniarealty.com

http://wyniarealty.smarthomeprice.com

Please give me a call or email me if you know of anyone that might want to buy or sell ANYWHERE in the world. I will take great care of them or find a top agent in another part of the country or world to help them. Thank you in advance for your referral!

Colorado Springs Weekly Real Estate Report

Colorado Springs Weekly Real Estate Report

weekly report 04262016

 

 

 

The weekly report shows that the market is doing well, we are increasing our active houses on the market slowly. This is the right direction, but we still need houses on the market. Houses are going under contract super fast so it is a struggle to get the number of active houses to increase. Like I keep saying, if you are even thinking of selling now or in the future, give me a call.

Jeremy Wynia

RE/MAX Properties, Inc.
719-213-0893 Cell/Text
719-570-9000 Office Main
wyniarealty@gmail.com
www.wyniarealty.com

http://wyniarealty.smarthomeprice.com

Please give me a call or email me if you know of anyone that might want to buy or sell ANYWHERE in the world. I will take great care of them or find a top agent in another part of the country or world to help them. Thank you in advance for your referral!

Colorado Springs weekly Real Estate Report

weekly report 432016

 

The Colorado Springs weekly Real Estate report shows the market is still doing well. Although we do still need more houses on the market, we are still pretty low in that area. Houses are not lasting long at all! If you are thinking of selling or buying give me a call, I would love to talk with you!

Jeremy Wynia

RE/MAX Properties, Inc.
719-213-0893 Cell/Text
719-570-9000 Office Main
wyniarealty@gmail.com
www.wyniarealty.com

http://wyniarealty.smarthomeprice.com

Please give me a call or email me if you know of anyone that might want to buy or sell ANYWHERE in the world. I will take great care of them or find a top agent in another part of the country or world to help them. Thank you in advance for your referral!

 

 

Building Your Real Estate Portfolio: Part 1 Getting the Home Purchased!

So you have read some of my previous blogs and you feel like you want to get started in real estate.  Well, there are a couple of ways to get started.  In my experience the way most people get started has very little to do with a “free seminar” where seating is “extremely limited”.  Most of these “seminars” I would compare to the traveling snake oil salesman of old.  What they have will cure everything and solve any problem. You can make tons of money without using any of your own and its risk free!!!! Yeah, not likely!

The real way that many start to get involved and often the easiest way to gain entry into the world of real estate is to purchase your first house. If you are looking to buy a house and you also know that you want to fix and flip or get a portfolio of rental properties, you may as well start with your personal, owner occupant house.  You see banks have no problem lending you money to buy a house you are going to live in.  It is in most circumstances the easiest loan you will ever get and you have the most options, VA, FHA, FHA 203K, conventional, or any number of “first time home buyer” type products. The one you choose is the one that best suits your plan and personal situation. Even better is that you will get a lower interest rate on an owner occupant purchase than an investment purchase and most lenders will allow between 6 and 10 owner occupant loans.

VA, FHA and most “first time home buyer” loans (which almost all run through FHA underwriting) are great products but if you are handy and want a property that needs a great deal of work, then an FHA or VA loan is likely not going to get you the property you want.  Those loan programs will not allow you to purchase a house that needs a ton of work. They will however get you in with the least amount of money down and sometimes that is what you need. You need a place to live and that is the first home investment step in what can be a life long process.  The one sort of loophole to this is to buy a house that is very dated and priced accordingly.  The FHA and VA loans don’t care that the house is dated, they do care that everything is there and that the house is livable at the time of purchase. You will want to make sure that you have a VERY knowledgeable realtor if you are thinking about going this rout. If they do not know tons about the process and about houses and maintenance you could be risking your earnest money, not to mention the cost of an inspection and an appraisal!

You will have a great deal more flexibility with an FHA 203K. FHA 203K allows  you to purchase a house that needs lots of work but the work has to be done rapidly right after the purchase and the money for the repairs are rolled right into the loan and earmarked for the repairs. This process has some pluses and some minuses.  The plus is that the home can be in pretty tough shape and you can still get it bough and fixed.  One draw back is that often you will likely need to hire a contractor to do the work and this can eat up a lot of the potential profits.  The loan itself also has quite a bit of extra work involved in the process. Lastly you will need to qualify for the entire loan amount of the purchase price and repairs. This can be restrictive if you have a high income to dept ratio, or need to max out your loan amount just to get into the market.

A conventional loan will be your best bet for purchasing a home that needs plenty of work and has lots of sweat equity. Be aware that the house still can not be in terrible condition unless you are putting TONS of money down, and even then you may find road blocks.  Lenders want you to purchase a home that they can sell if you do not make your payments. A burned out hole is hard to sell!  Again you should find a real estate pro that knows the process and can make sure that your loan will go through and reduce the risk if you loosing your earnest money.

The last and highest risk way to purchase a property is with a Hard Money Loan.  These are loans that are generally not based on the credit worthiness of the borrower but on the value of the asset. They vary a great deal from institution to institution or lender to lender.  Often times these are a group of investors or a single person that want to make a large return on their money and are willing to take bigger risks than most standard investment vehicles. Often you will need to put down a large chunk of funds up front, pay multiple points up front, carry very high interest rates and they are short term (often not longer than 6 months).  If you are buying the home to live in this is probably a bad option.

More on this subject to come!

 

Buy vs Rent a Different Perspective.

Buy vs Rent a Different Perspective

Being in the business of real estate I often see news reel clips from the different cable news outlets extolling the virtues of home ownership or of renting.  These are diverse topics covering lots of ground but here is a quick little take on the subject.

The most blatantly obvious reason for home ownership is Net Worth!  For many years now the net worth of a renter as stated by the Federal Reserve hovers just above $5,000. In contrast the net worth of homeowners, according to the same data source, has increased to a projected $220,000 in 2016.  This is a HUGE difference.

So the biggest reason to own a home could be that you are VERY likely to increase your net worth by leaps and bounds!  What are the reasons to rent? One reason swam across my Facebook feed just this morning.  One “friend” was sad because their furnace had stopped working and they were going to have to spend money to have it replaced.  A comment from one of their “friends” was “that’s why I rent, I let the landlord take care of all of that stuff”.  Well that is certainly true. The landlord (if they are a good and upstanding person) will have to take care of that for the renter.

So the renter saves money. Well not really, at least not in my market.  Renting a house, generally costs much more then owning that same house.  This is not true for all price points and all houses but is generally the case.  I see again and again where a renter pays at least a couple hundred dollars per month more to rent than the principal, interest, taxes and insurance are likely to be for the mortgage (HOA’s and PMI can eat up some of the savings of home ownership but that is information for a blog all on its own).

So let’s do some math again…  If you save $200/month owning you would have the money for a new furnace in about 3 years, roof may take 6-8 years to recoup the cost if you had to pay for it out of your pocket, a water heater, about 1 year. So as long as the home is in OK shape when you buy it you will hopefully not come out on the loosing side of this equation.  Even if things do seem to be breaking faster than you had hoped, your mortgage payment will stay relatively the same for 30 years (only taxes and insurance are likely to change).  Rent as a rule is always headed up, up, up! So again, you will probably come out ahead even if lots of stuff breaks.

Another advantage of ownership is that under the current IRS rules you get to write of the interest you pay on your mortgages.  This can really be a substantial savings, especially early on when you are paying nearly all of the monthly payment towards interest! In many cases this can easily be $100-$200/month in “savings”.

The other big point renters use to make themselves feel good about the decision is that they can move at any point they like. They are not tied down like an owner.  Not really true. Most landlords make you sign a year lease and you are on the hook for all that money.  Even if you have a great landlord or are on a month-to-month lease, well that’s still a month.  In a normal, healthy real estate market you can list, close and move out of your house in 2-3 months. Or, you can always rent out your house and be gone in a month just like your renter friends! So yah, not as foot loose and fancy free, but pretty dang close.

So your landlord will fix your broken furnace and you will likely be BROKE compared to your home owning friends even though they are spending money to fix thing and you are not. All this, and we did not even get into the paying of principle or owning a generally appreciating asset.