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[21 Apr 2016 | No Comment | ]

shutterstock_139225268If you have been thinking about putting your house up for sale, get ready. A new study conducted by researchers at Zillow has shown that there is a specific month when houses sell faster and homeowners should try to sell their homes, and that month is May.

The study found that on average, homes listed May 1st through 15th sold 18.5 days quicker than those listed outside of that timeframe. Additionally, homes that sold within that same timeframe were purchased for approximately 1 percent more than the average listing. While 1 percent doesn’t sound like much, it is still an additional premium of about $1,700.

With the spring housing season freshly kicking off and record low home inventory, the housing market is highly competitive. This holds true even more so for metro areas that experience intense seasonal changes, as more people search for homes once the weather is nice out. States with warmer climates such as California tend to see a bit more flexibility.

SPS News »

[18 Apr 2016 | No Comment | ]

Social Media Marketing for Real Estate Agents :: Single Property SitesFor a business to keep up within their industry, they need to have a solid understanding of how to best use technology, and as you may have guessed, mobile plays a large and critical role in this.

Here are six ways to help you leverage technology for your real estate business this year:

  • Optimize for mobile: As mentioned, mobile plays a critical role in technology and business. This year, mobile search has increased 19 percent among users, showing that 27 percent of total home searches were performed on mobile devices and tablets. Trends are showing that mobile is becoming the leading source of information for homebuyers, meaning you not only need a responsive website design, but you need to provide the most important and relevant information to help encourage customers reaching out to you.
  • Mobile apps and software: Mobile apps give you, the agent, an opportunity to connect with your clients throughout their home search by allowing access to email, private messages, notifications, and personalized listings at the clients’ fingertips. Apps also allow an easier search process for both the agent and the client.
  • Don’t underestimate the use of emails and newsletters: Sending emails every few days to new or potential clients, as well as weekly newsletters, helps to keep prospective homebuyers up-to-date on listings and what is going on in the market. Keeping a consistent flow of contact with potential clients help to build trust.
  • Use photos: Apps such as Hyperlapse (launched by Instagram) allows you to use time-lapse photography to display your listings. The app has image stabilization software and offers multiple enhancements all in one place. When your listings are visually appealing, you are more likely to garner the attention of potential clients.
  • Enhance your social media efforts: Social media is a key component in business today, not only helping with engagement but it also helps you to brand yourself and your business. Not only can you build relationships with clients by engaging posts and useful posts, you can actually improve your business blog by getting exposure to your posts through news feeds, and through the eyes of Google.
  • Perfect plug-ins: Once you have a proper CRM, using the right real estate plug-ins can help enhance your site and gather information about analytics while offering a number of other additional resources.

For the greatest success you need to be intentional about leveraging technology, and prepare for the years ahead as new and improved innovations are constantly on the rise.

We would love to hear about what others uses of technology you have found to be effective in your real estate business! Share your thoughts below!

Market News »

[28 Mar 2016 | No Comment | ]

50567376_lFor those who have been thinking about relocating to San Diego, or moving forward with purchasing a home, you wouldn’t be the first. With low interest rates and high appeal, real estate inventory in San Diego is shockingly low for both single-family homes and condos.

The county has seen about a 30 percent decline in the housing market, with less than 6,000 offerings listed for sale. When compared to other markets, San Diego is really hurting on availability.

Though this is ultimately bad news for buyers, sellers are at a great advantage, with handfuls of potential buyers coming in as soon as their property hits the San Diego MLS, Sandicor.

With such low inventory, buyers know that hesitation is their worst enemy and often come in at full price, if not over the asking price. The downfall of low inventory from a buyer’s perspective is that they must lower expectations, as there are few alternatives in such a market.

For those who are not flexible in location, they are stuck. At this point buyers have to build up the courage and take the leap in a town that everyone else seems to be going crazy over as well.

SPS News »

[21 Mar 2016 | No Comment | ]

blueHomeFebruary proved to be another sizzling month for North Texas home prices.

According to data from the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University and the North Texas Real Estate Information Systems, the price of pre-owned homes saw a 22 percent increase in comparison to this time last year. Data also showed that the average price of a home sale has increased by 9 percent since February 2015.

North Texas has seen rather tight inventory over the last couple of years. This year, the number of new listings went up 20 percent. Even with the increase in the number of available homes on the market, the area is still considered to have an incredibly tight inventory. In a regular market, a 6-month inventory is seen as normal, North Texas currently has a 2.1-month inventory.

The rise in sales is due in part to the increase of properties coming onto the market, in combination with the still tight supply.

In 2016, North Texas home sales are up 17 percent from the same period last year.

In February, real estate agents sold 6,836 pre-owned single-family homes and 498 condominiums and townhouses, with a median MLS price of $208,000.

There has been an influx of people moving into North Texas due to the strong job growth the area has been seeing over the last couple of years.

Real estate agents say that the number of homes hitting the market has started to increase, as sellers get ready for the traditional spring and summer selling season. Sales for the month of March are expected to be up substantially as well, making North Texas a hot market to watch.

Do you feel that North Texas will continue to see increase over the next few months?

SPS News »

[15 Mar 2016 | No Comment | ]

21590609_lMore people own houses than ever before in North Texas, yet there has been a dip in homeownership in the areas of Dallas and Fort Worth. So what is the reason behind this dip? The area has seen dramatic employment gains, as well as a changing demographic which has led to the shift that has been seen in renting.

Due to this influx, there has also been an increase in home prices. Even though there are currently more homeowners in North Texas than ever before, the area is still nearly 10 percent lower than the rest of the nation. With 56 percent of residents being homeowners in the area, in comparison to 64 percent of the population nationwide, North Texas remains at one of the lowest percentage rate among major U.S. cities.

As of January, home prices in the area have increased up to 10 percent since early 2015, hitting a record high for the area. New home in the area are exceeding $300,000, while pre-owned properties are averaging around $200,000.

According to the Texas Association of Realtors, the median household income for Texas homebuyers is now over $86,000.

With a shift in perception about renting vs. owning, Millennials’ play a large role in the dip, as most Texans in there 20’s are renters. Apartment living, which was one a temporary lifestyle, has become a permanent lifestyle for many. Apartment communities offer high quality and superior amenities in comparison to what they once were.

New Dallas-area apartments average more than $1,500 a month, which equates to more than a mortgage payment on a house that is over $250,000. However, many of the younger residents will choose to pay rent than to move into the suburbs where they can afford to purchase a home.

With the booming job market in Dallas, many younger individuals are moving in and choosing to rent, creating an influx in renting and apartment construction. Last year, about 20 percent more apartments were built in the D-FW area than single-family homes. Even more apartments are under construction today.

 

 

Market News »

[8 Mar 2016 | No Comment | ]

DallasDallas area home prices are seeing growth at a much faster rate than nationwide rates. In January, Dallas home prices saw a 9.8 percent increase in comparison to the start of 2015, while U.S. home prices were 6.9 percent higher in January.

The Dallas area is the number three on the list of major U.S. markets for home price gains, only being surpassed by Denver (11.8 percent) and San Francisco (11.6 percent) at numbers one and two.

Houston saw a 5.7 percent increase. Though still at an increase, it stands lower than the nationwide rate.

As the spring buying season is fast approaching, prices across the country continue to see an increase. This buying season is forecasted as being a good one due in part to low rates and a continued growth in jobs and income.

It has been forecasted that home prices will rise by approximately 5.5 percent this coming year across the nation as long as employment growth remains steady.

SPS News »

[29 Feb 2016 | No Comment | ]

open-house-signWith the growing concern of attacks on real estate agents, the need to further protect agents when showing homes has been a growing movement. The state of Florida is currently considering legislation that would put harsher penalties in place for attacks on real estate agents.

The measure, SB 214, would increase the classification of battery, aggravated battery, assault, aggravated assault, and sexual battery against agents and associates while showing property. For example, an occurrence that may be currently classified as a misdemeanor of the first degree may be reclassified as a felony of the third degree.

The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Nancy Detert, R-Venice, told the Palm Beach Post that agents need to be better protected by state laws because the crimes that are committed against them are “premeditated.”

The safety of real estate agents has become increasingly more prevalent, with a 2015 survey conducted by the National Association of Realtors finding that 40 percent of its members “experienced a situation that made them fear for their personal safety or safety of their personal information.” Of this 40 percent, 2 percent actually reported being robbed and 1 percent claimed to have been assaulted.

Before the bill moves on to the full Senate, the Florida Senate bill must pass two more committees. A related House proposal (HB 47) is currently awaiting full vote in the Florida House of Representatives.

Have you ever experienced a situation that made you fear for your safety? Do you feel these harsher penalties should be seen across all states? Let us know your thoughts below!

 

 

Additional Resources:

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/news/state-regional-govt-politics/florida-bill-stiffens-penalities-for-crimes-agains/nqWNm/

http://www.housingwire.com/articles/36358-florida-considering-harsher-penalties-for-crimes-against-real-estate-agents