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Tuesday, December 28 2010

Michele Lerner, author of Homebuying: Tough Times, First Time, Any Time, offers reasons why real estate is likely to improve in 2011. Here are five reasons she thinks consumers should consider a home purchase next year:

▪ Mortgage rates will stay low. Even with rates climbing — maybe to as high as 6 percent by 2012 — they are still well below where they have been historically.
▪ Tax cuts could help. Extending the tax cuts could encourage a more rapid recovery for the economy.
▪ Americans want to be home owners. A recent Fannie Mae survey showed that Americans still believe a home is a safe and desirable investment.
▪ Builders are about to begin building. Home builders have been sitting on the sidelines. This year, they think pent-up demand will create an appetite for new homes.
▪ Homes are shrinking. Homes are getting smaller, which has made them more affordable.

Source: Investopedia, Michele Lerner (12/24/2010)


http://www.realtor.org/rmodaily.nsf/pages/News2010122701?OpenDocument

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 09:43 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, December 22 2010

As part of the 2010-11Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report, REALTORS® recently rated exterior replacement projects among the most cost-effective home improvement projects, demonstrating that curb appeal remains one of the most important aspects of a home at resale time.

“This year’s Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report highlights the importance of exterior projects, which not only provide the most value, but also are among the least expensive improvements for a home,” said National Association of REALTORS® President Ron Phipps, broker-president of Phipps Realty in Warwick, R.I. “Since resale value can vary by region, it’s smart for home owners to work with a REALTOR® through the remodeling and improvement process; they can provide insight into projects in their neighborhoods that will recoup the most when the owners are ready to sell.”

Nine of the top 10 most cost-effective projects nationally in terms of value recouped are exterior replacement projects. The steel entry door replacement remained the project that returned the most money, with an estimated 102.1 percent of cost recouped upon resale; it is also the only project in this year’s report that is expected to return more than the cost. The midrange garage door replacement, a new addition to the report this year, is expected to recoup 83.9 percent of costs. Both projects are small investments that cost little more than $1,200 each, on average. REALTORS® identified these two replacements as projects that can significantly improve a home’s curb appeal.

“Curb appeal remains king – it’s the first thing potential buyers notice when looking for a home, and it also demonstrates pride of ownership,” said Phipps.

The 2010-11Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report compares construction costs with resale values for 35 midrange and upscale remodeling projects comprising additions, remodels and replacements in 80 markets across the country. Data are grouped in nine U.S. regions, following the divisions established by the U.S. Census Bureau. This is the 13th consecutive year that the report, which is produced by Remodeling magazine publisher Hanley Wood, LLC, was completed in cooperation with REALTOR® Magazine.

REALTORS® provided their insight into local markets and buyer home preferences within those markets. Overall, REALTORS® estimated that home owners would recoup an average of 60 percent of their investment in 35 different improvement projects, down from an average of 63.8 percent last year. Remodeling projects, particularly higher cost upscale projects, have been losing resale value in recent years because of weak economic conditions.

According to the report, replacement projects usually outperform remodel and addition projects in resale value because they are among the least expensive and contribute to curb appeal. Various types of siding and window replacement projects were expected to return more than 70 percent of costs. Upscale fiber-cement siding replacement was judged by REALTORS® the most cost effective among siding projects, recouping 80 percent of costs. Among the window replacement projects covered, upscale vinyl window replacements were expected to recoup the most, 72.6 percent upon resale. Another exterior project, a wood deck addition, tied with a minor kitchen remodel for the fourth most profitable project recouping an estimated 72.8 percent of costs.

The top interior projects for resale value included an attic bedroom and a basement remodel. Both add living space without extending the footprint of the house. An attic bedroom addition costs more than $51,000 and recoups an estimated 72.2 percent nationally upon resale; a basement remodel costs more than $64,000 and recoups an estimated 70 percent. Improvement projects that are expected to return the least are a midrange home office remodel, recouping an estimated 45.8 percent; a backup power generator, recouping 48.5 percent; and a sunroom addition, recouping 48.6 percent of costs.

Although most regions followed the national trends, the regions that consistently were estimated to return a higher percentage of remodeling costs upon resale were the Pacific region of Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington; the West South Central region of Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas; the East South Central region of Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi and Tennessee; and the South Atlantic region of the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia.

The regions where REALTORS® generally reported the lowest percentage of costs recouped were New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont), East North Central (Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin), West North Central (Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota), and Middle Atlantic (New York and Pennsylvania).

“It’s important to remember that the resale value of a particular improvement project depends on several factors,” said Phipps. “Things such as the home’s overall condition, availability and condition of surrounding properties, location and the regional economic climate contribute to an estimated resale value. That’s why it is imperative to work with a REALTOR® who can provide insight and guidance into local market conditions whether you’re buying, selling or improving a home.”

Results of the report are summarized in the January issue of REALTOR® Magazine. To read the full project descriptions, access national and regional project data, and download a free PDF containing data for any of the 80 cities covered by the report, visit www.costvsvalue.com. “Cost vs. Value” is a registered trademark of Hanley Wood, LLC.

Hanley Wood, LLC, is the premier media company serving housing and construction. Through four operating divisions, the company produces award-winning magazines and websites, marquee trade shows and events, rich data, and custom marketing solutions. The company also is North America’s leading provider of home plans. Founded in 1976, Hanley Wood is a $240 million company owned by JPMorgan Partners, LLC, a private equity affiliate of JPMorgan Chase & Co.

REALTOR® Magazine is published by the National Association of REALTORS®, “The Voice for Real Estate” and America’s largest trade association, representing 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

Source:http://www.realtor.org/press_room/news_releases/2010/12/home_owners_recoup

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 10:32 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, December 16 2010

  It’s almost a new year, so let me make some specific and bold
  predictions about real estate sales in 2011.  Sales, compared to 2010, will
  be greater in January, about the same in February and will be less in March,
  April and May.  What does this mean about the state of real estate and where
  we will be after the first half of 2011?  The answer is, absolutely
  nothing.  In case you are wondering why I’ve started this month’s Market
  Watch as I have, let me explain.  The real estate market has experienced two
  tax credits that have expired since November of 2009.  In both cases the tax
  credits boosted, then slowed real estate transactions.  My predictions only
  reflect the reality of the real estate market returning to normalcy, without
  unusual stimulus.

       The national press will be full of articles discussing significant year
  over year changes in the real estate market.  Don’t be fooled by assuming,
  based on these articles that there are really big changes occurring in real
  estate sales.  We will not really have meaningful year over year information
  until July of next year.

       My advice for now would be to take advantage of very low interest rates
  that are sure to rise. Home prices locally have already stabilized, in fact
  the average sales price in our market has climbed from $117,592 for all of
  2009 to $122,430 through the first eleven months of 2010. If you or someone
  you know does not currently own a home, and is financially qualified, there
  will not be a better time to buy in the foreseeable future. The net worth of
  a homeowner, on average, is 41 times greater than the net worth of a person
  who does not own his or her home.  If you are contemplating moving to a
  different home let me give you realistic expectations about the value of
  your current home and show you the cost of the home you would like to own.

       Kathy and I would like to take this opportunity to extend our best
  wishes for a joyous holiday season and a Happy New Year.

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 01:43 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, December 01 2010
New-home buyers are downsizing their square footage to better suit their lifestyles, but are not necessarily paying lower prices for their homes, say some home builders. In fact, in several cases, new-home buyers are probably spending more per square foot in order to be cost-efficient on heating and cooling a smaller home while opting for upgrades, such as granite counter tops and stainless steel appliances.

Read more here: http://www.housingwatch.com/2010/12/01/new-home-buyers-downsizing-but-not-in-price/
Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 11:16 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
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The Trentini Team
F.C. Tucker EMGE REALTORS®
7820 Eagle Crest Bvd., Suite 200
Evansville, IN 47715
Office: (812) 479-0801
Cell: (812) 499-9234
Email: Rolando@RolandoTrentini.com


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