Category Archives: Current Market Conditions

Fees to be Aware of When Purchasing a Home

Purchasing a home is arguably one of the biggest financial decisions you will make in your lifetime. As you start your hunt, don’t forget there will be other costs associated with your purchase than the price of the home. This is valuable information, especially for first-time homebuyers. These are all good reasons to hire an experienced Real Estate Agent to help navigate you through the process, plus the fact of multiple offers and homes now selling above listing price.

Here are 5 fees to keep in mind as you begin to budget.

  1. Home inspection. This is a crucial step in the home buying process. The findings that come from the inspection can help you negotiate price and repairs. Generally, you can expect to pay between $300 to $500 depending on the home and the location.
  2. Title services. Title services encompass the transfer of the title from the seller and a thorough search of the property’s records to ensure to no one will pop up with a claim to the property. Additionally, you may need to buy title insurance which will protect the lender or your investment in the home.
  3. Appraisal fee. Before getting a loan, you will likely be required to get an appraisal of the home to determine its estimated value. This will be conducted by a third-party company and the cost can land anywhere between $300 and $1,000, depending on the size of the home.
  4. HOA fees. Many communities have a homeowners’ association that enforces monthly fees. This money is used for general maintenance and updates to areas like pools, parks, and more. Typical HOA fees are around $200 per month.
  5. Taxes. The taxes each buyer pays at the closing table differ, but it is not uncommon for it to be up to two months’ worth of county and city property taxes. Additionally, there may be taxes for the transfer of the home title.

I would be happy to talk with you as you prepare to buy or sell and devise a plan to help you transition as smoothly as possible.

Sincerely,

Marie Dinsmore

The Dinsmore Team

Experience, Passion, and Commitment to Excellence

What Is A Seller’s Market?

A seller’s market happens when demand exceeds supply. When there are more buyers, but real estate inventory is low. Since there are fewer homes available, sellers are at an advantage. We have definitely been in a Seller’s Market for many months now.

In a seller’s market, homes sell faster, and buyers compete in order to score a property. These market conditions often make buyers willing to spend more on a home than they would otherwise. Therefore, sellers can raise their asking prices. Furthermore, the increased interest means that buyers rarely have the power to negotiate and are more willing to accept properties as-is.

Due to the shortage of housing, these conditions often lead to multiple offers. During these bidding wars, buyers will make competing offers and drive up the price, typically above what the seller initially asked for.

Tips For Buyers

 Whenever there is a low inventory of houses on the market and an abundance of buyers, timing is crucial.

Act fast: If you find your dream home during a seller’s market, you will have to act fast. If you hem and haw over a house you want to buy, you may find that it’s no longer available by the time you make an offer. You should get preapproved for a loan ahead of time, so your financing is in order when you need it.

Know that you’re at a disadvantage: When it comes to making an offer, keep in mind that you’re the one at a disadvantage. A seller’s market is not the time to try to push contingencies, concessions, specific closing dates or repairs. Focus your attention on what’s most important to you. If there are certain stipulations you want written into the contract, think hard about whether they are worth losing the property over. If you can make an all-cash offer, you should. Sellers prefer buyers who are willing to pay in cash because they don’t have to worry about the deal falling through due to issues with financing.

Be patient: If you find that you keep losing out on the homes you’re interested in, it’s crucial to be patient and not get discouraged. Many buyers end up suffering during a seller’s market because they get frustrated. Inexperienced buyers caught up in multiple offers will often offer more money than a home is actually worth – or they feel comfortable spending – in order to get the home they want. That’s always a mistake.

Don’t settle: On the flip side, some buyers will end up making offers on homes they otherwise wouldn’t be interested in because they’re tired of losing out. Remember, buying any property is a huge investment and often a 30-year commitment. Don’t settle on a home just because it’s cheaper. Unless you have to move immediately, it’s a much better idea to wait it out and resume your home search after the market cools down.

Tips For Sellers

Since sellers must compete to attract buyers in a seller’s market, it’s helpful to know how to increase interest in your property.

Clean and organize: To begin, make sure that your home is in good condition and has been cleaned and organized before you list, market, or show the property.

Price fairly: Even though homes tend to sell for more money in a seller’s market, it still helps to price your home fairly. If you set your asking price at or slightly below fair market value, you are likely to attract more interested buyers. Some sellers choose to list their homes for slightly less than the assessed value in order to encourage multiple offers.

Carefully consider offers: It’s even more important during a seller’s market that you carefully review the offers you receive. Sellers are often so focused on choosing the highest offer that they fail to examine the financial strength of each buyer. Just because buyers say they’ll pay a certain amount for your home doesn’t guarantee they’ll actually be able to obtain those funds. Lenders will not allow buyers to borrow more than the assessed value of your home.

The last thing you want is to accept an unrealistic offer and be forced to put your home back on the market when the deal falls through. The longer your home is on the market, the more questionable it will seem to buyers, and the more power they will have when negotiating. For ALL these reasons, is why you need an experienced real estate agent.

Ensure preapproval: For any buyers who require financing, you should ensure that they have been preapproved for a loan. Preapproval requires that buyers’ finances and credit history are verified, making it far more likely they’ll ultimately be able to obtain a loan for a specific amount of money. Prequalification, on the other hand, is just an estimate of buyers’ finances.

Be aware of contingencies: Also, be on the lookout for offers that include contingencies. Offers that include stipulations, like mortgage contingencies, home sale contingencies, appraisal contingencies, and inspection contingencies, enable buyers to back out of sales contracts if certain conditions aren’t met.

Is It A Buyer’s Market Or A Seller’s Market?

In the North Georgia area, it is definitely a Seller’s Market.  The inventory of homes for sale is at an all-time low which is preventing some potential sellers to list their property.  Here are some things to consider if you are one of those sellers:

  • Consider new construction. Often times you will have a more definitive timeframe and have somewhere to move.
  • Consider renting for a while. Yes, it may require two moves, but will also give you time to find just the right property.
  • Consider moving in with family. Not the most ideal situation, but some have the extra space and would agree for a limited time.
  • Go on an extended vacation. Have an RV or rent one? With work from anywhere situations, this might be the opportunity to travel until the market has more inventory.
  • If you have a beach/mountain rental, use it until you find your next forever home.

Bottom line is, if you can be flexible, you can take advantage of getting top dollar for your current home and still find your next home.  Give me a call and let’s work out a plan for you.

Best Regards,

Marie Dinsmore

Experience, Passion, and Commitment to Excellence

Top Tips for House Hunting Online

Hunting for a new home online is a great place to start your new home search, but it should not be your end all be all.  One of the services that I offer my clients is providing them with the most up to date current listings of the homes that meet their search criteria.  I have access to and can send the notice of a new listing within 15 minutes of it going on the market.  And some I even know about as ‘Coming Soon.’  I can also research the ones of interest prior to the showing to find out if it truly meets all the checkboxes before we schedule a showing for you.

Good listing agents are excellent at highlighting the best features of the home, but keep in mind there may be more than meets the eye. To make the most of your time and efforts and gather a well-rounded picture of home listings online, keep the following three things in mind.

  1. Stay up to date. When you start your search, make sure you find a site that pulls up-to-date listings directly from the multiple listing service (MLS) where real estate agents actively post their most current homes for sale. Many online resources update less often or fail to remove listings that are off the market, making it more difficult to sort through the clutter. The service I provide will provide the most up to date information.
  2. Pictures can be deceiving. Real estate photographers are experts at showing a home in the best possible light. Many use tools and strategies to boost appeal, such as a fisheye lens to make areas look larger and creative editing to make colors and textures really pop. But often listings will not contain photos of unappealing parts of the home, like small closets or outdated bathrooms. When you wonder why there are not certain photos of key points of the home, it’s usually because that’s what they don’t want you to see.  Some research on my part often uncovers that and eliminate wasted time of going for a showing.
  3. See it to believe it. Once you find what appears to be your dream home online, call me to schedule a showing. You want to take the opportunity to vet the home in person and explore every part of it before beginning the offer process. I will help you cover all your bases and will ask questions you may not have thought of.

Yes, inventory is low and the market is very competitive right now, but I can save you time, energy, and frustration by being your source for your new home search.  Provide me your wish list and I’ll set up for you to receive a notice when your dream home comes up for sale.

Marie Dinsmore

RE/MAX Around Atlanta

Experience, Passion, and Commitment to Excellence

The Value of a Good Realtor

Despite COVID 19 the market is still doing well.  The best thing about the real estate market right now, are those who are buying and selling property are serious.  What is getting listed, is selling fast.

So, why do you need to enlist the help of a good realtor to sell your property and not do it yourself?

  1. Overpricing. Experience shows that when the home is overpriced it usually doesn’t sell quickly; if at all.  A good realtor can get you good comparisons on what has sold nearby and advise if you need to have your property appraised prior to listing.
  2. Selling in “As-Is Condition. In today’s competitive market, you need to take the effort to make your house sparkle like the day you bought it.  If there are reasons that you have to sell ‘As-Is,’ then a good realtor will have alternative solutions, i.e. the I-Rep program, know of investors, etc. looking for property in the area.
  3. Drive-By Appeal. First impressions decide whether the buyer even stops to come in.  Depending on your location, you may not be able to depend on drive-by traffic to even get potential buyers interested except for perhaps your immediate neighbors.  And in today’s market people want a preview of the inside, so you need great photos for a virtual tour.  Your realtor will get your property listed on all the real estate listing sites so that all serious buyers and other realtors have access to the information on your property and can schedule showings.
  4. Dark Home Syndrome. The brighter and cleaner a home is, the better it shows.   A good realtor will ensure you have plenty of notice prior to bringing potential buyers to see your property to give you sufficient time to tidy up.
  5. Overvaluing Your Home. Beware of spending too much on your property so that you overvalue its worth in the neighborhood.  Having a conversation with a good realtor can give you good sound advice on where to make improvements and what will help your home sell.  It is advisable to have that conversation as soon as you’re thinking about listing your property.
  6. Financing. Be willing to be flexible with closing costs.  This is all part of why you hire a realtor.
  7. Do It Yourself Syndrome. Unless you know the laws about Seller’s Disclosure and termite reports you could cost yourself thousands of dollars by doing it yourself.
  8. Stay Out Of The Way. If you are underfoot when showing, a buyer does not feel free to really look at your home.  Put away and lock up any valuables before showing.  Yes, you love your home and you may think you can point out all it’s best features, leave this to your realtor.  Realtors screen potential buyers before bringing them into your home so as to only bring those who are serious.
  9. Attitude. A positive attitude is best; remember your taste is not everybody else’s.  Another reason you want to leave the showing of your property to your realtor.  They can also advise you on how to best prepare your home for showing.
  10. Seller’s Remorse. Respond to offers quickly, the first might be the best offer.  Your realtor will advise you on pricing your home correctly.  In today’s market, the offers come in quickly and are on target for what the property’s value truly is.  By not responding and being able to negotiate may delay the sell and getting the best price.

Have questions?  Give us a call.  We can help you through the maze of selling or buying in today’s market.

Sincerely,

Marie B. Dinsmore
RE/MAX Around Atlanta
Marie@DinsmoreTeam.com
www.DinsmoreTeam.com
770-712-7789

 

Still Listing / Still Showing Homes / Homes Still Being Sold

These are challenging times, but, Yes, we are still listing, showing homes, and selling homes.  Granted we have had to get creative in order to do so, but that is what a good experienced real estate agent does.

Some of our clients are willing to do Facetime Virtual tours.  Others have created a virtual tour of their home that we can send to prospects.  For those clients who decide they want to visit the property and see it in person, we are taking every precaution.  We ask the property owner to open all doors as well as cabinet doors, so we don’t have to touch anything.  Or if we do, we’re using gloves.  We are sanitizing upon entry and when we leave the property.  Our buyers and seller’s safety are our primary concern at this time.

There are also other ways to receive offers for your home rather than the traditional listing.  As an iRep Real Estate Pro, I can help you receive cash offers on your home and a retail market valuation in 48 hours.  So, if you were planning to sell this spring but are apprehensive, due to our current situation, this might be an option to consider.

Contact me and we can discuss all your options.

Marie Dinsmore

The Dinsmore Team

RE/MAX Around Atlanta

www.DinsmoreTeam.com

Cell 770-712-7789/Fax 770-888-7793

Experience, Passion, and Commitment to Excellence!

Community Resources

WELCOME

2019 Welcome Services

The Dinsmore Team has created this handy guide for both Buyers and Sellers. The guide lists trusted service providers that we use personally and professionally. The providers listed service the Forsyth and North Fulton County areas.

2014 Complete Guide to Moving

This 20-Page Guide will be your comprehensive source for selling your home and planning your move. It includes tips for getting ready to sell, planning your move, packing and transitioning into your new home.

2014 Home Owners Tip Guide

This 20-Page Guide will help you develop an annual maintenance schedule for your home's systems and appliances to help you avoid bigger problems by taking care of them while they are small. It's also a great resource for trouble shooting malfunctions on your own, saving you time and money.


utilities

Looking for a fast way to connect all of your utility services online? Try Connect Utilities.

Please let us know if there are other resources you'd like to see.

Marie@DinsmoreTeam.com

770-712-7789