Listing Courtesy of PATTERSON-SCHWARTZ REAL ESTATE
Whenever you are getting ready to buy or sell a residence, taking the temperature of the local housing market is part of how you prepare to engage. When Milton real estate prices are on the rise, bargain hunters know they’ll have to scramble. When Milton real estate prices are flat or on the downturn, spotting good value in the local listings is easier. A slow market means that those sellers who are impatient to move on will be willing to reduce their asking price. They will tend to “find the market” more quickly, rather than waiting it out.
Our Milton real estate prices are seldom in exact lockstep with the national market—but when it moves, the impact is felt sooner or later. Of all the national barometers that are out there, the pre-eminent one is the research done by under the Case-Shiller banner.
At the end of last month, the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index again confirmed the uptrend we’ve been seeing for nearly 3 years now. No surprise there: nationally, residential real estate prices continued to rise at the moderate clip that we’ve grown accustomed to. The only standouts were in the 20-City Composite (the single month rise of .5% was the largest increase since July) and in Denver and Dallas—both of which have now actually surpassed the peaks registered at the height of the real estate price bubble (which might have Coloradans and Texans wondering if it was a bubble at all)…
But what was unusually interesting were some observations published at the end of the Case-Shiller report, in the Analysis section. It noted that the data marked the 34th consecutive month of year-over-year price gains, and that home real estate prices “continue to rise and outpace both inflation and wage gains.” It pointed out that, nationally, average residential real estate prices are within 10% of the “housing boom peak.” And then it came up with an insight that puts things in perspective in a way that hasn’t appeared elsewhere. This by S&P Dow Jones Index Chairman David Bitzer:
“A better sense of where home prices are can be seen by starting in January 2000, before the housing boom accelerated…”
Looking at inflation-adjusted numbers, the latest U.S. real estate prices as registered in the Index rose just a touch under 30% from January 2000 to February 2015. In other words, when you remove the whole statistical bulge—the “bubble” phenomenon—out of the picture, residential real estate prices have risen at an annual 1.7% rate. That’s real appreciation, adjusted for inflation. Slow—but “steady as she goes!”…and for the past three years or so, it’s more than doubled that long-term gain.
Milton homeowners whose stress levels went up and down with the extreme price rise and fall would have been a lot more comfortable had they just snoozed through the whole affair, confident that the long-term history of real estate demonstrates, as the name implies, just about the most ‘real’ investment you can make.
When you get ready to take a look at the residential market, I hope you will want to give me the first call. I’ll share the latest up-to-the-minute info on Milton real estate prices and activity that will put everything into meaningful perspective! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit more listings at www.beachrealestate.com.
In Milton 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 Milton 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 Milton 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 Milton 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 email@example.com, visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.