Sep 25, 2015
For anyone who has never participated in a serious house-hunting effort, their mental image of how the experience will unfold may be a little off. They might imagine that, after narrowing down their requirements for a Dewey Beachhome (size, price range, and the like) they will agree on a day and time, then just climb into their Dewey Beachagent’s car and settle back to have the likely prospect properties exposed before them.
In fact, the house-hunting procedure is almost like that, except for one major detail:
A property search is a participation sport!
Experienced Dewey Beachproperty searchers have learned to husband their energy on any day that includes home showings. Especially when their property search doesn’t immediately yield a find that fits their target criteria, they know that it may take a while—and more than a few house-hunting outings—before they identify a suitable house.
What takes so much energy? Sophisticated home buyers know that every showing holds the possibility that they could be setting foot in what might just become their future home. Every showing is literally the only time they will ever have a valid ‘first impression’ of the place that might become a major purchase. And each of those first impressions often come as part of a day that includes multiple showings—one that can easily result in a jumble of impressions, where homes with similar features are easily confused in memory. Since second and subsequent showings should be reserved for properties that qualify as serious contenders, wasted time and effort (not to mention inconvenience to the homeowners) can be avoided by alert, sharp-eyed property searchers. It takes stamina!
That’s why more experienced prospects know from the outset that a home showing isn’t a passive experience. It’s not a bad idea to have a pen handy for jotting notes on the listing sheets the Dewey Beachagent provides—notes about distinguishing features (good and bad!) that will help with comparisons at the end of the day.
For those who are veterans of previous property searches, this is old news: they remember reviewing sessions that include, “No – that was the one with the bay windows, not the one with the [fill in the blank].” For first-timers, it’s good to know in advance: a property search is a participation sport. And you’re the team captain!
If you are about to embark on the search for a Dewey Beachproperty, or have one that’s soon to be listed, do give me a call. Properly arranging efficient home tours is only part of my track record of helping successful home sales happen! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.
Sep 25, 2015
When your family needs more or less elbow room, or a neighborhood change is in order, it’s time to start combing the listings for the right Bethany Beachhouse for sale. At the same time, though, now that prices have been steadily rising for so long, it’s not unreasonable to ask yourself if this a good time to be looking? The question arises from the investment side of a home purchase; so it’s logical to ask what the investors are doing…
Those who looked upon any Bethany Beachhouse for sale only as an investment rather than a place to live tend to fall into one of two groups. The first live by the buy low, sell high school of investing. It’s a philosophy that makes perfect sense—it’s been around since before Wall Street was even paved, and its logic is unarguable. Back when U.S. real estate prices took the express elevator down to street level (and below), this group looked at the chart that showed median house prices, noted the cliff they had just gone over, and started looking for the nearest house for sale to scoop up. Their assumption was that these prices had to go up…eventually—no matter how bleak the future looked. Because that’s always the case.
But that group of canny local investors soon found themselves with unexpected competition. Big investment conglomerates started showing up, suddenly looking for houses for sale at bargain prices. The result was a strange kind of bidding war, where the ‘buy low’ investors who spotted a Bethany Beachhouse for sale at a fire sale price had to compete with institutional bidders (and they had unlimited budgets!). A lot of all-cash sales were made, at a few dollars higher than would have been the case if strictly local investors had had the market to themselves.
Although the second kind of investors may have agreed that there is unarguable arithmetic underlying the ‘buy low, sell high’ philosophy, they are unimpressed by it. Buying low and then selling high is a fine abstraction, but since you never know when the lowest price has been reached, nor when the peak high prices have arrived, they ignore the whole price roller coaster phenomenon. Whenever they have accumulated the right amount of money to invest, their single concern is to find a quality Bethany Beachhouse for sale, buy it at a fair current comparable price, and then hold on to it. They have confidence that markets rise and fall, but in the long run, a quality residence will appreciate in value. So these are the buy and hold investors.
Now, most of us consider a Bethany Beachhouse for sale primarily as a place to live rather than as an investment vehicle. Nonetheless, we don’t offer to pay more than its current market value because we don’t want to lose financially should we decide to sell. But in most cases, we plan to live in the home long enough that we consider a loss unlikely. In other words, we fall into the buy and hold group.
So what does that suggest about whether it’s wise to be looking at Bethany Beachhouses for sale when prices have risen as they have? I may be a bit prejudiced, but a ‘yes’ isn’t hard to come by. For the ‘buy low, sell high’ folks, we haven’t even hit the previous high water mark when you take inflation into account. For the buy and hold adherents, it’s always the right time to buy a quality home at a fair price—especially when mortgage rates are low. Which means that now is also the right time to give me a Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at email@example.com, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.
Sep 25, 2015
In Rehoboth Beach real estate, there are happy words (“sold!”) and there are troubling words (“default”). Because of the associations they conjure up, some phrases just automatically make us happier. Two of the leaders in the positive category are the magical words, ‘vacation home.’ All by themselves, they can trigger a smile. Why not? “Home” is comforting; “vacation” is fun. Put them together in “vacation home” and you’ve got a double positive. It’s a real estate equivalent of Jimmy Buffett’s Cheeseburger in Paradise.
As the economy recovers, some American families are doing more than just smiling at the idea. The Wall Street Journal says that vacation home sales jumped more than 50% in 2014—up from 717,000 the year before. Quicken Loans reports a jump “in both the number and dollar volume of second home mortgage applications.”
To a Rehoboth Beach homeowner with sufficient wherewithal, there are some practical, real life incentives for moving the idea from daydream to the ‘to do’ list. The primary motivation is what comes first to mind. Just as a vacation is a welcome respite from the day-to-day, a vacation home needs to qualify as a destination that is pleasurable in itself. Where that could be differs for everyone, but whether it be the beach, desert, mountain, lake, cultural metropolis or outdoor sporting mecca, any Rehoboth Beach homeowner’s vacation home should be a haven inherently suited to relieving the stress of the workaday world. Although it would seem to be properly classified as a pure luxury expense, vacation homes can be more financially sensible than that.
The Kiplinger web site has a number of observations for vacation home buyers. It finds that some mortgage interest rates on second homes have lowered to first-home rates. Another alternative is the “favorite source” for all-cash purchases: a home equity line of credit. According to Kiplinger, “Mortgage interest on a second home is deductible on as much a $1 million in principal for both homes combined.” If lenders calculate eligibility via the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guidelines, a borrower’s total debt payments should not exceed 36% of gross income…but if the second home is to be rented, that income can be part of the calculation.
Which brings up some other possibilities. A vacation home can not only cut down on vacation expenses (hotel and restaurant prices are rising, after all); if rented out some of the time, it can contribute offsets to its cost. To take advantage of IRS rules regarding personal versus rental classification, you should consult a tax expert. Since a quarter of vacation homes are rented out at least some of the year, it’s a tactic that deserves investigation.
Perhaps the advantage that’s talked about most for second home buyers is the contribution it can make toward retirement. If a retiree ultimately converts a vacation home to principal residence, profits from the former home can make a handsome contribution to the retirement nest egg. And if by retirement time that vacation home has been paid for in whole, it can make for an even more pleasing financial picture.
For an Rehoboth Beach resident with sufficient resources, purchasing a vacation home can be a practical as well as emotionally sustaining venture. If it sounds like an idea worth investigating further, talk it over with your financial advisor—and I’ll be standing by to help with any and all real estate considerations! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.
Sep 25, 2015
The way the media treated last week’s federal funds rate announcement by the Federal Reserve Board was a convincing demonstration of how much importance is placed on that singular piece of the financial puzzle. That rate may not be directly tied to Lewes mortgage interest rates, but since it determines lenders’ borrowing costs, its effect is considerable.
For many years now, Lewesmortgage interest rates have been comfortably nestled near the bottom of their historical range. Many Lewes homeowners have enjoyed the resulting low monthly payments on their mortgages. Lewes home sellers have likewise benefitted from home loan interest rates that make their properties more affordable than would otherwise be the case.
Real estate repercussions are a major part of the reason that the Fed’s announcement, which came midday last Thursday, had the national media holding its collective electronic breath. With ten minutes to go, one cable network talking head could add little illumination. “Wall Street will be watching the announcement very closely,” was her understatement. Channel flipping with five minutes to go, viewers found the streaming banner at the bottom of one network trumpeting BREAKING NEWS…BREAKING NEWS… before the fact. On CNBC, “the most highly anticipated announcement in years” was awaited by four commentators who had the unhappy challenge of predicting the decision mere seconds before the fact. Above the ever-moving streams of real-time data (oil was down, the stock markets up) panelists chattered about China (“it’s big and mysterious”), inflation targets (“missed again”), and optimism (“a rate hike won’t hurt the economy, it will help”). Only if the Fed “saw something down the road,” it was agreed, would they not raise rates. Then, just 5 seconds to go…then-
The Fed left rates unchanged.
Citing concerns over global this and financial that, the Fed said they were going to be monitoring them. The economy expanded at a moderate pace, and housing improved moderately, they said. But since global conditions might cause trouble...
The media’s excitement level flat-lined within minutes. “The markets are not panicking,” said a gentleman in a snappy suit. He looked irritated. “I blew it,” said another, who moments before had thrown in with the majority predicting a rate rise. “They cited uncertainty,” he frowned; then blurted, “The Fed is the biggest source of uncertainty!”
The stock markets didn’t react at all at first. Later, they closed mixed.
The next day, mortgage interest rates crept downward.
What seemed to be an excitement bust for the media was good news for many of the viewers. When the Fed funds rate continually hovers close to zero, there’s ample reason to suspect that Lewes mortgage interest rates might stay put for a while. TheStreet website later reported that they expected rates to rise a bit before year’s end. Given the recent record of expert predictions, it might be safer to stand behind one with a better chance of success: the next Fed announcement, I predict, will be the most anticipated announcement in years.
Meantime, if you have been mulling over whether to take advantage of the current balmy mortgage interest environment, I hope you’ll give me a Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at email@example.com, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.