Thanks for taking the time to visit BobNelsonTeam.com. I hope you will find the information here helpful in your day-to-day life in the Northern Virginia area as well as in your home buying or selling process.
Give me a call at: (703) 999-5812 or send me an email at Bob@BobNelsonTeam.com
NAR President Gary Thomas, broker-owner of Evergreen Realty in Villa Park, Calif., said homes are selling much faster. “The typical home sold in March was on the market for one month less than it took to sell a year ago,” he said. “Multiple bidding is becoming more common, and more homes are selling above the asking price, so buyers need to move quickly and follow their Realtor®’s advice for contingencies when making contract offers.”
I can attest to that with our own experience over the past two months. One of my buyers made an offer on a townhouse in Arlington that included an escalation addendum going $40,000 over list price. We lost out on the contract. Apparently someone else came in at a similar number but without an appraisal contingency. I can’t fathom contracting to purchase a home for $40,000 over without an appraisal. Five or ten thousand is OK, but not $40k.
I then submitted a contract for condo in Old Town. This too went for over list price by $5,000. We had submitted our offer with an escalation addendum. The next highest offer was for $3,000 over list.
Last weekend two different clients submitted offers and lose out to others who came in higher. One for a home in Great Falls and the other for a home in Herndon. The home in Great Falls went for over list at $2.0 million and was an all cash deal with no finance/appraisal contingencies. Not quite sure what the one in Herndon went for, but we had an escalation addendum going to more than $20,000 over list. Both sets of clients submitted offers on other properties yesterday. Hopefully these will be more successful.
110 N. Garfield St.
Offered at $1.595 million
This fabulous custom built Craftsman style home is located in the Lyon Park area of Arlington. Only minutes from DC and within walking distance of Clarendon Metro stop. Highlights of the home include a TRUE front porch with more than ample space to entertain. The interior details leave nothing to be desired including solid six panel doors w/Baldwin crystal knobs, a 15′ X 19′ family room, main level office, plantation shutters and two kitchenettes. The main kitchen includes Cherry Cabinetry/granite countertops and GE Monogram Stainless appliances. The beautifully landscaped yard with custom designed hardscape is perfect for those outdoor barbeques.
CHECK OUT THE VIRTUAL TOUR BY CLICKING ON THE PHOTO
For the past 2+ years, we have been hearing that housing starts are down. In the shallow way in which our media reports things, this has been presented as something less than desirable. Although not an economist, for the same 2+ years, I have been saying that this is actually a very good thing for the long term health of both our housing market and the U.S. economy in general. Builders and investors got carried away with home construction during 2004 and 2005. They ended up putting way to much inventory into the market place than was needed. We are just now entering into a period where there is beginning to be housing shortages (in certain markets). This in turn has caused rents to increase. This is very much the case in parts of Fairfax and Arlington Counties.
The June 20th issue of the Economist contains an article entitled: “Will housing save America’s economy?” that is discussing the fact that there is a large pent up demand for new housing. To read the full Article, click on the link: Economist Article. Hope you find this of interest.
Five Reasons You Should Sell Your House TODAY!
Selling your house in today’s market can be extremely difficult. It is for that reason that every seller should take advantage of each and every opportunity that appears. Each fall, such an opportunity presents itself. This fall, that opportunity may be just too good to pass up.
Below are five reasons you should consider pricing your house to sell in the next 90 days. Meet with your real estate agent and mortgage professional today and see whether it is the right move for you and your family.
1. Entering this time of year, the buyers are more serious.
We all realize that buyers are not quick to pull the trigger on the purchase of a home today. There is no sense of urgency with the supply of eligible properties at all time highs. However, at this time of year, the ‘lookers’ are at the stores doing their holiday shopping. The home buyers left in the market are serious and are more apt to make a purchasing decision. Less showings – but to more motivated purchasers.
2. If you are moving up, you can save thousands.
The Chicago Tribune stated in an article last week that sellers who want to ‘trade up’ should act now:
It could be a bigger house, different neighborhood or a better school district, but it comes with a higher price tag. Do the math; this might be the right time.
A home that was once worth $300,000 may now be worth $240,000 in a market where prices have fallen 20 percent. Wow, you think, the seller is taking a bath. But that seller may also be a prospective buyer who wants a house that once was valued at $400,000. With an equivalent market drop and a realistic listing price, that house may now sell for $320,000. So, in effect, the person is losing $60,000 on the sale of one home but coming out ahead $20,000 on the purchase of another.
Keep in mind the spread may be even greater. There’s a smaller pool of potential buyers for more expensive homes, so sellers may be more willing to cut their price to get a deal done.
3. Interest rates just fell again – to 4.19%.
Professor Karl E. Case, the founder of the Case Shiller Pricing Index in an article in the New York Times last month actually did the math for us:
Four years ago, the monthly payment on a $300,000 house with 20 percent down and a mortgage rate of about 6.6 percent was $1,533. Today that $300,000 house would sell for $213,000 and a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with 20 percent down would carry a rate of about 4.2 percent and a monthly payment of $833 … housing has perhaps never been a better bargain.
4. You beat the rush of inventory that is coming next year.
Every year there is an increase of inventory which comes to market from January through April as homeowners put their houses up for sale in preparation for the spring market. As an example, here is the number of listings available for sale in each of those months in 2010.
- January – 3,277,000
- February – 3,531,000
- March – 3,626,000
- April – 4,029,000
You won’t have to worry about this increasing competition if you sell now.
5. You have less ‘discounted’ inventory with which to compete.
This year, sellers of non-distressed properties have been given an early holiday present. With banks declaring a suspension on the sale of many distressed properties (foreclosures), there has been a large supply of discounted properties removed from competition. No one knows how long this self imposed moratorium will last. However, while it does, every homeowner has a better chance of selling their property.
If you are looking to sell in the near future, there may not be a more opportune time than this fall. Serious buyers, great move-up deals and less competition from foreclosures creates the perfect selling situation. Don’t miss it!
Military Appreciation Mondays
Our Military Kids
April is national Month of the Military Child.
I hope you can come out for this month’s Military Appreciation Mondays event at the Old Brogue which will be in recognition of the contributions made by the children of our Servicemen and Women. I am particularly proud to be bringing back the truly special program – Our Military Kids. These dedicated folks provide support to children of deployed National Guard and Reserve personnel as well as to children of injured service members through grants for enrichment activities and tutoring. Such activities help these children cope with the stress of having a parent in a war zone or recovering from injury at home. OMK grants are made to honor the sacrifices that military families make and to ensure that their children have access to sports, fine arts, or academic tutoring programs.
To show your support, simply come out and have dinner at the Old Brogue in Great Falls. Myself and my cosponsors will each be contributing a 10 percent match (typically a total of an 80 percent match) of your dinner tab to Our Military Kids.
You can also show your support through:
A. The purchase of door prize entries. (ALL Proceeds go directly to Our Military Kids.)
B. Our buy a vet dinner initiative. A minimum donation of $25 to OMK entitles you to purchase dinner for one of our vets.
C. Or you can make out a fully tax deductible donation to Our Military Kids.
Be Certain to make a Reservation for
Either the 5:30 or 7:30 Seating by Calling
The Old Brogue at: (703) 759-3309
Hope to See You There
Feel Free to Post the Attached Flyer in Your Office
and forward this email to whomever you think may want to attend.
We Would Love to Break 150 Attendees
I am proud to say that last month’s event in support of the Lift Me Up! therapeutic horseback riding program for our injured vets had approximately 125 people in attendance and raised approximately $4,500. This was our best total to date. I would like to particularly thank Col. Pete Hilgartner (USMC Ret.) for helping out with a book signing at the last two events. Let me know if you would like to purchase a copy of Colonel Hilgartner’s book “High Pockets War Stories”. A $10 donation will be made to OMK with each sale.
Please be certain to support my co-sponsors whenever you have a chance.
Danny Ott – George Mason Bank
Gary Kaihara, DDS
and our door prize donors:
Thank you so much to those who have stepped up to brighten Christmas for the children of our injured servicemen. Twelve of the sixteen families on the list have been fully accounted for with 25 of the 33 kids ready to have a wonderful Christmas morning. Nancy and I ran out on Friday to do our shopping for the Helmuth kids. We simply couldn’t resist the urge to buy “any toy that makes noise” for the one year old girl. It was a great deal of fun picking out toys we thought the twins would enjoy. We also had to learn all about transformers for four year old Nathaniel!!
If you are still considering showing your appreciation to our vets, please take a look at the remaining names below. Once you let me know who you would like to purchase a gift for, drop an e-mail to Santa@BobNelsonTeam.com. We will then give you the address and contact info for the family. Feel free to visit the websites for Our Military Kids, Operation Second Chance, Thanks USA, the Semper Fi Fund and the Yellow Ribbon Fund if you’d like to show your support to these wonderful grassroots organizations.
Kids Still in Need of Gifts
Weissmiller Family (Adopted by the Moran and Vamvakias families – Thank you Mary and Don)
- 12 yr old girl: in-line skates (size 6-7)
- 7 yr old girl: roller skates (size 1)
Jensen Family (Adopted by the Grimes family – Thank you James and Susan)
- · 13 yr old girl: Ipod Touch
- · 9 yr old girl: Wii gaming system
- · 6 yr old girl: Littlest Pet Shop toy house
- 18 yr old boy: laptop computer for his school work and for college next year (A big thanks to Shiner Roofing and Siding for offering to purchase the laptop. Again my thanks Kevin.)
- (A short note about this one. It seems that the Fulkerson boy is a senior in high school. He had come home from school and accidentally left his car door unlocked. Someone actually stole the laptop out of the car from the son of an injured vet. I realize this is a large item to be requesting. I’m imagine he would be happy to receive a good condition laptop if nothing else.)
Thank You to Those Who Have Agreed to Purchase Gifts for the Families Below
Bellis Family (Adopted by the Hoernig family – Thank you Laura and Family)
- 14 yr old girl: electric guitar, JC Penney’s gift card
- 11 yr old boy: football, Tennessee Titans merchandise, JC Penney’s gift card
- 6 yr old girl: Barbie doll, furreal electronic dog, JC Penney’s gift card
Broesch Family (Adopted by the Heil family – Thanks Tim)
- 15 yr old girl: art supplies (paint brushes, charcoal pencils), iTunes gift card
- 7 yr old girl: books, craft supplies, a Barbie doll
Brown Family (Adopted by Knight Point Systems – Thank you Lindsey)
- 7 yr old boy: Xbox 360
- 1 yr old girl: Disney princess toys/merchandise
Christiansen Family (Adopted by the Christianson family- Thank you Vickie and Family)
- 9 yr old girl: Girl Gourmet Cake Bakery
- 4 yr old girl: Girl Gourmet Cupcake Maker
Deen Family (Adopted by the Matthews family and Collingswood Nursing Home – Thank you Catherine)
- 16 yr old girl: iPod
- 15 yr old boy: video games
- 14 yr old boy: video games
- 9 yr old boy: board games
- 3 yr old girl: educational toys teaching the alphabet and numbers
Helmuth Family (I can’t resist. Adopted by the Nelson Family.
- 3 yr old boy: Transformers, action figures, books
- 1 yr old girl: any toy that makes noise! (I love this one)
Loper Family (Adopted by the Borland Family – Thank you Dodie and family)
- 12 yr old girl: digital camera
- 11 yr old boy: remote controlled cars
- 10 yr old boy: nintendo dsi
- 7 yr old girl: American Girls doll
Sherrill Family (Adopted by the Copito family – Thank you Debbie and family)
- 14 yr old boy: new sports bag (for carrying sports equipment to practice)
- 11 yr old boy: new sports bag (for carrying sports equipment to practice)
Hall Family (Thundercat Technology)
- 8 yr old boy: gameboy
Holsey Family (Adopted by the Grossmans. Thank you Jackie!)
- 15 yr old boy: gift cards to Footlocker and Macy’s
Pointer Family (Adopted by the Heil family – Thanks Tim)
- 13 yr old boy: ripstick skateboard
Williams Family (Adopted by the Smiths – Thanks Laura and Gene)
- 14 yr old girl: gift cards to Barnes & Noble or AMC Theaters
- 6 yr old girl: Barbie doll, clothes (pants size 6x, shirts size 7)
According to data from the National Association of Realtors, pending home sales were up 3.7 percent in October, compared to September, and up 32 percent when compared to October 2008. This was the biggest annual increase in history. Keep in mind that October 2008 was a historic low so we should not be surprised by the huge increase.
Pending home sales — which equates to the number of contracts signed but have yet to close — rose in all sections of the country except the West. They were up 20 percent in the Northeast, 11.6 percent in the Midwest and 5.4 percent in the South, but down 11.2 percent in the West.
Part of the surge is probably attributable to buyers rushing to take advantage of the government-subsidized first-time home buyer’s credit, which was set to expire at the end of November but now has been extended through April. Also, the bulk of sales still are coming from cheaper houses, with little movement in houses costing more than $250,000.
Existing-home sales bounced back strongly in September with first-time buyers driving much of the activity, marking five gains in the past six months, according to the National Association of REALTORS®.
Existing-home sales—including single-family, townhomes, condominiums, and co-ops—jumped 9.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.57 million units in September from a level of 5.10 million in August, and are 9.2 percent higher than the 5.10 million-unit pace in September 2008. Sales activity is at the highest level in more than two years, since it hit 5.73 million in July 2007.
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said favorable conditions matched with a tax credit are boosting home sales. “Much of the momentum is from people responding to the first-time buyer tax credit, which is freeing many sellers to make a trade and buy another home,” he said. “We are hopeful the tax credit will be extended and possibly expanded to more buyers, at least through the middle of next year, because the rising sales momentum needs to continue for a few additional quarters until we reach a point of a self-sustaining recovery.”
Even with the improvement, Yun said the market is underperforming. “Despite spectacular gains in the stock market, principally from the financial sector recovery, most of the 75 million home-owning families have more wealth tied to their homes. Home values could soon turn consistently positive and help the broad base of middle-class families, but we are not there yet,” he said.
Conditions for First-Time Buyers
Early information from a large annual consumer study to be released on Nov. 13, the 2009 National Association of REALTORS® Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers,shows that first-time home buyers accounted for more than 45 percent of home sales during the past year. A separate practitioner survey shows that distressed homes accounted for 29 percent of transactions in September.
NAR President Charles McMillan said affordability conditions remain historically high. “Potential first-time buyers can take heart in that affordability conditions this year are the highest on record dating back to 1970, but with the first-time buyer tax credit scheduled to expire at the end of next month, people could hold back from entering the market,” he said. “Our read is that housing overshot on the downside because homes are selling for less than replacement construction costs in much of the country, and the home price-to-income ratio has fallen below the historical average.”
Total housing inventory at the end of September fell 7.5 percent to 3.63 million existing homes available for sale, which represents an 7.8-month supply at the current sales pace, down from an 9.3-month supply in August. Unsold inventory totals are 15.0 percent below a year ago.
“The current housing supply is the lowest we’ve seen in two and a half years,” Yun said. “If we could continue to absorb inventory at this pace, home prices would return to normal, modest appreciation patterns next year.”
According to Freddie Mac, the national average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage fell to 5.06 percent in September from 5.19 percent in August; the rate was 6.04 percent in September 2008.
Home Sales Breakdown
The national median existing-home price for all housing types was $174,900 in September, which is 8.5 percent lower than September 2008. Distressed properties continue to downwardly distort the median price because they generally sell at a discount relative to traditional homes in the same area.
Single-family home sales rose 9.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.89 million in September from a pace of 4.47 million in August, and are 7.7 percent above the 4.54 million-unit level in September 2008. The median existing single-family home price was $174,900 in September, which is 8.1 percent below a year ago.
Existing condominium and co-op sales jumped 9.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 680,000 units in September from 620,000 in August, and are 9.7 percent above the 561,000-unit pace a year ago. The median existing condo price was $175,100 in September, down 11.7 percent from September 2008.
Here’s the region-by-region picture:
- Northeast: Existing-home sales increased 4.4 percent to an annual level of 950,000 in September, and are 11.8 percent higher than September 2008. The median price was $234,700, down 7.0 percent from a year ago.
- Midwest: Existing-home sales jumped 9.6 percent in September to a pace of 1.25 million and are 7.8 percent above a year ago. The median price was $147,600, which is 1.0 percent below September 2008.
- South: Existing-home sales rose 9.0 percent to an annual level of 2.06 million in September and are 10.8 percent higher than September 2008. The median price was $153,500, down 7.6 percent from a year ago.
- West: Existing-home sales surged 13.0 percent to an annual rate of 1.30 million in September and are 5.7 percent above a year ago. The median price in the West was $219,000, which is 15.0 percent below September 2008.
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Purchasing real estate is a great investment whether you are purchasing your first home, second home or are a seasoned investor. You are invited to visit this site often to view homes for sale, read home buying and selling advice, get information about local schools, and the local communities. (About Me)