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Wednesday, January 29 2014

Part of the recovery in Evansville’s real estate scene is the increasing likelihood of multiple offers on a listed property. This is every seller’s dream— but if you are one of the bidders, it’s important that you don’t allow it to become your nightmare.

There is one way— the only sure way—to keep the specter of competing multiple offers from upsetting your home buying prospects. Summed up in one word, it’s “preparation.”

Preparation starts with assembling a strong financial package. If your target property attracts multiple offers, you want yours to stand out. By the time you learn that other offers are at hand, it’s probably already too late to begin putting together documents—they should be in hand before you even identify a property. Getting pre-approval for your loan, having a letter that says so, and being able to show you have funds available can be persuasive.

When it comes to making the offer itself, although including “Subject to” clauses will protect you from unforeseen problems with the property, when multiple offers are on the table, the fewer contingencies the better. Again, only preparation will make this reasonable. If you’ve had an advance home inspection, and also made sure that there aren’t any right-of-way or easement issues, your offer can be significantly more attractive.

Personal preparation can be another positive. Visiting the property on several occasions at different times of the day should give you added confidence for what the home is truly worth to you…and when the listing agent and owner can put a face to your offer, it tends to strengthen its validity.

When multiple offers on a property occur, it’s possible that someone is going to bid more than the home is really worth. If you’ve done thorough research and know precisely what its value is in today’s market, that won’t be you. Having your bottom line number unshakably in mind means that in any bidding war, you’ll be able to sweeten your offer without hesitation. You can be creative, perhaps by offering to reduce the seller’s costs by picking up escrow fees, transfer fees or title policies; perhaps by offering the seller a few additional days to move without seeking financial compensation in return; perhaps by increasing the down payment or earnest money. When you know your bottom line, the arithmetic is uncomplicated (and your less-prepared competitors are more likely to throw up their hands!)

And then…should the bidding go over what you know it’s worth, you’ll be ready to walk away. There will be other properties to bid for – and I’m always here to help keep all your options open!   

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 10:57 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, January 22 2014

Market Watch January 2014

Before we talk about 2014, I think this is an excellent time to compare the real estate market in 2013 to the previous year.  My ulterior motive is that from virtually any perspective 2013 was a great year!

Unit sales in our market increased just over 10% from 2012 to 2013, while the median price increased 2.2% over the same time frame.  While these increases did not improve quite as much as our statewide increases of 13.6% in units and 4.2% in median sales price this was still an excellent year.  If you remember Market Watch from a couple of months ago, I pointed out then that the decline in unit sales and median prices was not as great as the state as a whole so I did not expect the increase to be as strong either.  2013 was the best year we have ever had in sales volume.  This was the first time that F. C.  Tucker Emge Realtors closed over $400 million in sales volume.

In addition to the increase in both homes sold and in prices, there was even more good news.  Both days on market and the list price to sales price ratio also improved.   Homes are now selling, on average, about 100 days after they are listed, down from 122 days at the beginning of 2012.  The final list price to sale price ratio averaged just under 96% for all of 2013.  Both of these numbers are sustainable and are good indicators of a stable market.

One statistic that is outside the normal range is the number of homes currently for sale.  As of mid December there were 2,326 homes for sale in our MLS.  This is the lowest number of homes on the market since May of 2005.  The message here is that if you are considering selling your home, get it on the market now.  The spring selling season always starts sooner than most sellers think.  On average, buyers look for 10 weeks before buying a home.  Since it takes 30-45 days for a typical transaction to close, buyers who will actually move in April or May are looking for homes online today.  Don't miss the best time of year to get your home on the market, and keep in mind the most visited local website is FCTuckerEmge.com.

If you haven't already registered to receive email notifications of new listings in you geographic area or price range give me a call and I can help you register.  You can even help friends or family find what they are looking for. Give me a call if you have any questions about our market or specific questions about the value of your home. You can reach me on my cell phone 812-499-9234 or email Rolando@RolandoTrentini.com

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 12:11 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, January 10 2014

It can take years for first-time buyers to save up for their first home’s down payment, but even after that hurdle has been cleared, it can take even more time to secure a mortgage -- if they have neglected the other part of the equation. Their credit rating.

Before first-time buyers in Evansville will be able to move forward with that initial home purchase, they need to ensure that their credit score does not raise the kind of questions that sometimes derails an otherwise well-qualified home loan applicant. This has always been true, but may become even more likely as lending limitations grow increasingly strict.  

But it’s the occasional recording error or misstatement that is most easily preventable. Ironically, those often affect perfectly well-qualified buyers—precisely because they have no reason to suspect that a problem could crop up.

The upshot: first time buyers should start reviewing their credit history one year to six months before they intend to buy a home. Since the credit agencies provide upon request free copies of every individual’s report once each year, the only hassle is having to check the details line-by-line (a single reporting error can have a big impact on an overall score). And since it’s not unusual to take 90 days or more to cure a disputed entry, the earlier a first-time buyer begins the process, the better. Individuals can file a dispute online with the credit bureaus, or can hire a credit repair company to assist with disputes. In all cases, claims should be documented and correct information provided immediately.   

Once a first-time buyer is certain that his or her reports are accurate, is it time to relax? Hardly. It’s important to continue to monitor those scores to ensure against accidental surprises. Especially, after wholesale credit card thefts sowed confusion and disruption throughout the system, it’s probably wise to assume nothing. Several online services offer credit monitoring (and it’s possible that your bank might provide free monitoring).

From first-time buyers to seasoned investors, I’m here to help my clients every step of the way. Call me today! You can reach me on my cell phone 812-499-9234 or email Rolando@RolandoTrentini.com

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 08:00 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, January 09 2014

For most of us, the appeal of new construction—a brand new home which your family is first to own—is undeniable. The idea of being able to select your own floor plan with a layout you like and upgrades built to order is hard to beat.

But home shoppers looking for new construction in Evansville should be particular. If their future home is to meet expectations, some sophisticated questions should be asked and answered before any agreements are reached.

Home models are usually decked out with the best and most expensive furnishings and finishes, unlike more modest packages, where the unadorned dwelling is delivered without any fancy stuff. When you are viewing a home in a new construction development, be sure to ask how much that specific model costs—as-is. You can bet that the figure will be substantially higher than the most widely-advertised low-end price…and when you question what features create the price differences, you’ll readily determine if those are features you consider indispensable. A little arithmetic, and you’ll know how much your home will run.

Some developers have better reputations than others, and you’ll want to work with the very best. Ask for references, of course, and do your own online investigation. Look at the previous new construction projects the developer has worked on and check whether they’ve had numerous complaints filed against them. Don’t necessarily trust every grumpy comment; but you can tell from the general level of satisfaction what you’re likely to experience.

New construction proceeds as a complex process—one where it pays to monitor progress to confirm that you’re getting exactly what you want (with no changes or alterations accidentally slipping through). Before signing on the dotted line, be sure you understand exactly what the construction process entails, and when and how often you’ll be able to enter the site to monitor progress.

Asking the right questions and monitoring finishing work is key in preventing unwanted surprises when it comes to new construction. If you’re interested in learning more about new homes and developments in our area, I’m just a phone call away! You can reach me on my cell phone 812-499-9234 or email Rolando@RolandoTrentini.com

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 08:00 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, January 08 2014

The signs are positive for those who will be putting their home on the market this winter. Demand is there, mortgage rates are still low, and across the nation, prices are pointing higher. If you will be selling a home in Evansville anytime soon, there are some extra steps you can take to strengthen your position. 

Clarify Your Finances

Getting a home loan will be the concern of the buyer, not you. She or he will have to fill out the forms, go through the credit checks, etc. More subtle is the impact your own financial picture can have on the process of selling a home. If you will be moving to a new home yourself, it’s a good idea to get pre-qualified for that transaction even as you begin selling your home. When you are secure in the knowledge that you have qualified to buy your next home before your current property is sold, it solidifies your bargaining position. If not, you need to know that so you can time your sale’s closing appropriately. Knowledge is power—clarifying your finances will make for smoother sailing. 

Repair Early

Selling a home for the best price requires presenting it in its most favorable light. Even minor fixes that are clearly trivial should be tackled before the first prospect crosses the threshold, First impressions are hard to erase, and the psychological impact of even minor problems can influence the apparent value your property commands. Some experienced homeowners even pay for their own advance inspection before selling a home just to identify problem areas it takes an expert’s eye to uncover.

Find the Right Agent

Your choice of Realtor® will have ongoing consequences, so taking the time and effort to find a compatible agent will be well worthwhile. Selling a home in Evansville is a many-faceted project, so find a partner you will enjoy working with— one who communicates openly and honestly about everything from today’s market profile to which service professionals are the most dependable.

Thinking of selling a home in Evansville this winter?  Call me for a complimentary consultation.  I’m always here to offer the best current marketing ideas! You can reach me on my cell phone 812-499-9234 or email Rolando@RolandoTrentini.com

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 08:00 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, January 07 2014

If there is one question that homeowners and prospective shoppers have in common as we enter the New Year, it’s about the direction of local real estate values in 2014. Small wonder: the financial market meltdown of the last decade had such a profound impact on all forms of real estate that it still has many people looking nervously over their shoulders. How likely is another tumble in the coming 12 months? Will real estate values in Evansville continue to rise? Knowing the answer could make a big difference to anyone planning to buy or sell a home in the area this year.

Of course, absolute certainty on that score is not possible for anyone without a time machine in their basement. But, as we look back over last year, we might gain a little bit more confidence by hearing from the experts who got it right in 2013.

Foremost among them was Dr. Lawrence Yun, the chief economist of the National Association of Realtors®. Last year, he was dead-on. 

Dr. Yun is calling for a continued rise in prices—pretty much in line with the past year’s gains. To compensate for expected mortgage interest rate gains—the likely effect of the Federal Reserve’s easing of policies that fueled 2013’s financial markets—he suspects that lending institutions will ease borrowing strictures. That’s something we can all applaud!

Overall, if local real estate values in 2014 follow the NAR’s national prognostications, we would expect real estate value increases either like the Wall Street Journal’s quoted prediction of 6%, or of Dr. Yun’s 5%. Either would not be surprising, given last year’s real estate values numbers. What the NAR experts and the Journal also agree upon is a flattening of residential housing sales volume in line with 2013 levels.

How much credence can we give to what the seers predict? Perhaps a little more than usual. “The NAR forecast could be viewed as restrained in light of the housing market’s gains in the past two years,” says the Journal; and “…other 2014 forecasts are fairly close to Mr. Yun’s predictions.”

Thinking of selling a home in Evansville this winter?  Call me for a complimentary consultation.  I’m always here to offer the best current marketing ideas! You can reach me on my cell phone 812-499-9234 or email Rolando@RolandoTrentini.com

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 10:45 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  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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