Wow! Did the first quarter of the year fly by? It's been a very busy yet challenging time in real estate lately. The buyers are still out there and some are hungrier than ever. Yet, interest rates being higher have dampened the plans, dreams and hopes of many home owners. Some sellers fear listing their home will leave them with no where to go as inventory is so light. Some buyers feel that they will be outbid, dropped for a cash buyer or will pay too much and too high a rate. So much to juggle! The reality is that if you NEED a home or REALLY WANT a second home - you will buy one. It's only a matter of time. If you are one of those folks who are under the "golden handcuffs" are the folks most feeling entrapped. Golden Handcuffs refers to those folks who bought their homes with a very low rate OR who refinanced to a very low rate. So now unless you have a compelling reason to move you don't want to surrender your good rate for a higher one.
We get that. However, I am reminded of a saying that someone in the industry came up with: "marry the house not the rate". What this means is that even if you have a higher interest rate initially, you can always refinance down the road when rates adjust lower. At the end of the day we can not predict the future. We can not know for sure if we are heading into a recession or if inflation will be tamed or if our dream home will hit the market tomorrow. So what's the moral of the story? Buy when it makes sense for you. List when it makes sense for you. But either way - use me. lol - Wishing everyone a happy, peaceful and lovely Spring! I am here to help, answer questions or whatever you need real estate related.....or hiking the Adirondacks related too!
November 2022 It seems impossible that we are just a few days before Thanksgiving! Wasn't is just yesterday we were jumping in the pool or lake to cool off during a super hot summer? Well the fact is the Fall is here in full force. Opening day of deer season was this past Saturday and I was lucky enough to land a beautiful, large 8 pointer! My freezer is full and that actually helps reduce my anxiety of the palpable change you can feel in the air. We are headed for a recession....it's clear. However, this doesn't mean that real estate will come to a grinding halt. It means that there will be a return to "normalcy". Artificially low interest rates are gone. Back are more historically realistic rates. Do we like that? No we don't, but we have to deal with the hand we are dealt. No one wants 12% annual inflation either. My oil bill this month was more than both of my car payments combined. That hurts. So we are feeling the financial pain and since real estate is down, we are getting pinched on the income side. Higher expenses, lower income = difficult times and choices., But housing is one of the most important choices we have to make. We have to live somewhere and exactly where is often dicated by life events: marriage, divorce, kids off to college, new baby, aging out of ahouse with stairs, job change, etc. etc. All of this life altering events are reasons to move. These moves drive real estate and nothing stops these moves. They are part of all of our daily lives. So if you are thinking of selling - don't worry. If you are thinking of buying - don't worry. Will it be harder and more expensive? Yes. But it is still possible - just give me a call to discuss your situation. In the meantime have a VERY Happy Thanksgiving!
So everyone is feeling the economic pinch from inflation. It's painful. As a Realtor I sell pretty much anywhere in NY. This requires me to do a tremendous amount of driving, so I feel the gas prices daily. So how does inflation impact the real estate market? In many ways is the best answer. First of all inflation is the enemy of the Federal Reserve once it reaches what they consider an unacceptable level. Once above their "desired" level inflation causes pain to all of us. Higher home prices (which we have had for years now) are on the verge of starting to be lowered due to basic economics of supply and demand. With the Fed raising interest rates, mortgage rates typically follow (which they have) and now buyers must pay near 7% to buy a home. In January they paid 3%!!!! That is an enormous increase. But that doesn't mean people are not buying homes or even second homes. They are. lots of cash deals are still happening. What is does mean is that there are LESS people eligible to buy homes and those who were shopping for a home with a mortgage can afford less of a home now. Either way if you are looking to sell - call me. You will need help navigating the shift in the real estate market. In the meantime - enjoy all that this season brings. The crisp air, the changing colors, holidays, pumpkins, hunting, camping, football and family time! September 2022
This year is just flying by! I had been training for 7 weeks for a 50 mile hike to raise funds for a charity (see YouTube video above). Once I completed the 56 miles (it was 3 miles longer than the name suggests and I got lost for an additional 3 miles!) I had a feeling of a semi deflated balloon! I had so looked forward to the solo hike into the vast and remote wilderness of the Adirondack mountains that once done....I was let down. That feeling is also experienced by many buyers today as they are having a challenging time finding their first or next home in this market. Although inventories in many markets have climbed, the buyers want to be able to choose...or have a choice when looking. Additionally they know the interest rates are likely to be hiked up significantly at the end of the month. This could put a serious damper on buyers ability to finance homes. It will simply put - take some buyers out of the market altogether. So if you are considering listing - the time is now. Yes, there are always buyers and cash buyers BUT the over all buyer pool will diminish as their purchasing power is eroded by these continuing rate hikes. Which unfortunately is EXACTLY what the Federal Reserve wants in an attempt to calm inflation. So major change is happening and will continue to happen. Tos discuss your particular situation please reach out to Don. 914-907-2738 or firstname.lastname@example.org
So as the market cools and changes the summer is hotter than ever! Sellers are experiencing longer time periods on the market. Buyers are more sensitive to prices,. It is all changing. Is the market crashing? Absolutely not. It's in a state of normalizing. It is long over do and it's a completely normal thing. Prices can't go up forever as the number of buyers would dwindle to nothing.
Aside from the market calming down, Summer is a great time to take stock in one's life. This year I had the privilege to become part of the Howard Hanna Children's Free Care Fund Committee. Our purpose is to raise much needed funds for local Children's hospitals in our market area. I have decided to do a 50 mile hike around Cranberry Lake in the northern Adirondack mountains. I have been training every morning - hiking through multiple towns lugging a 60lb backpack. it's exhausting but I love every minute of it. When the day comes in a few weeks when I arrive in Cranberry Lake and hit the trail for 3-4 days of remote hiking, I'll be in heaven. Additionally, knowing that this hike will be for a great cause will make it that much better. I was inspired to do this hike by a colleague's daughter who is a two time organ transplant recipient who is a dynamic and amazing young lady. She is a true inspiration. Want to help me raise funds? See above for a QR code that goes right to the Facebook donation page and THANK YOU! Have a great summer and be safe! Maybe I'll see you on the trails!
UPDATE July, 2022
So, the 4th of July just passed and both buyers and sellers are wondering "what is going on in the real estate market?". A lot is the answer. interest rates are on a steep climb and have risen significantly in the past 6 months. They are anticipated to continue this steep rise and if you are buying your buying power will be reduced. Meaning you will have to buy a "cheaper" house or make sacrifices. Typically, in a rising interest rate environment you will eventually see prices decline. However, due to immense pent-up demand, and a lack of inventory (sellers need a place to go most of the time) the prices are staying high at the moment. You will see properties in some market reducing prices. You will also see some "hot" markets where prices continue to be high and unreachable for many buyers. What does this all mean? Continuing the trend of the past 3 years buyers will have a tough time and sellers will (if priced right) be able to sell relatively quickly and get high prices. This will not continue forever but the Federal Reserve is at war with interest rates and things will eventually "normalize". When that will happen is anyone's guess. This year? Next year? We just don't know. Inflation, rising rates, oil and food shortages - we have a lot to stress about these days. However, owning a second home in a vacation area can be a great way to let stress dissipate and hey you can even rent the place to make some money! Yes, there is a silver lining. Second homes in, on or near lakes or with large parcels of land are enjoying great popularity with buyers right now. Have one you want to sell? Call me and let's put together a strategy for you!
UPDATE: New Standards of Practice law: April 2022:
STANDARDIZED OPERATING PROCEDURE FOR PURCHASERS OF REAL ESTATE PURSUANT TO REAL PROPERTY LAW §442-H
Howard Hanna Real Estate Services (the “Broker”) is making this Standardized Operating Procedure available on any publicly available website and mobile device application maintained by the Broker and any of its licensees and teams. Broker has copies of these Standardized Operating Procedures available to the public upon request at Broker’s office location. Please be advised that Broker: 1. Does not require Prospective buyer clients to show identification 2. Does not require Exclusive buyer broker agreements 3. Does not require Pre-approval for a mortgage loan/proof of funds Although Broker may not require such information, a seller of real estate may require this information prior to showing the property and/or as part of any purchase offer.
Market Update April 2022: So many buyers are still out and about searching for a home. However, the frenzy is starting to show signs of a top out of the market. The Federal Reserve is essentially at war with inflation and has targeted the real estate market to help cool down the economy. They do this by raising interest rates via inter banking mechanisms (they don't control the actual rates offered by banks and mortgage companies - just the rate these rates are based off of.... more on an indirect influence. Thats a conversation for another day. As a seller you need to know this: 1) second home sales are starting to dip and are expected to continue to dip - this will eventually lead to lower prices. 2) As rates rise - the Federal Reserve has suggested they will raise rates sharply next month and in the next year. This will have a very serious impact on buyers' ability to purchase homes and decrease their desire for a second home. The market is in a flux of change. BUYERS: 1) rising rates mean you can afford less of a home. 2) You absolutely need to have an updated preapproval to be taken seriously by sellers in this market. The preapproval should be updated after ever rate hike. Dor more updates, information and details on the NY State real estate market - call Don 914-907-2738.
Folks the real estate market in NY (and most of the USA) is super hot. We are experiencing a bit of a reprieve at the moment that is based on everyone wanting to go on vacation and take a deep breath after such a challenging year and a half. If you are thinking of selling or just curious about the value of you home, cabin or and - give me a call. I am going to go on record to say that this may be the best opportunity of your lifetime to get maximum dollar for your property. Interest rates are still historically low and buyer demand remains strong. How long will this last? No one can answer that but we can "guestimate". Most experts are guessing another year to year and a half. My feeling is not as optimistic. I think the variant is going to be bad and we will fee the pain across our economy. I hope I am wrong but I feel like 6 to 9 months of this continuing is way more realistic. But right now things are hot and crazy. So reach out and let me know how I can help you. Loo out for more updates soon and more detail as to the nuances of land sales, different regions, etc. In the meantime stay safe! Don
April 21, 2021
This year has brought madness to the real estate world in many parts of the country. We are experiencing a perfect storm: it's a confluence of events and situationally influenced actions by the government paired with good old fashioned supply and demand. So what am I talking about? Covid woke a lot of people up and dragged them kicking and screaming into a new reality. One where they were forced to face their working conditions, their health, who they lived with, where they lived and how they lived. Adjustments, disruptions and changes were dropped on us all like a ton of bricks. All of a sudden going to the store to by milk could lead to a potentially life threatening virus killing you and or your family. Suddenly work was gone or busier then ever. School became an expressionless computer screen. Meetings went virtual. Gatherings stopped. Travel? No.......no travel. It al changed and so much is still a year and change later not back to any form of normal. So you know al of that. What I was really talking about was real estate and what's happening.
Real estate is being impacted by the following: artificially low interest rates (controlled by the federal government flooding the country with cheap money, high demand from an exodus of folks from NYC and other cities who can now work from anywhere. Many of them escaping the perceived lawlessness of cities right now and or the masses of people. Additionally we have a lot of buyers wanting to go from condo to home but not as many to go from home to condo which is what normally happens. We also have a feeling of "where will I go?" With political, racial and societal issues raging a lot of people are just staying put. Lastly people who are now working from home are thinking why would I want to stay in a city or a small apartment? Now they want bigger places, more spread out, more land, more privacy. It has gotten to the point where the inventory is so low that almost every house sells quickly. So if you are thinking of selling -anything - any thing at al, house, land, fixer upper, high end property, anything please call me. There has literally NEVER BEEN A BETTER TIME TO SELL. EVER.
So 2020 has been a year none of us will ever forget. I won't bore anyone repeating all the details we all know. However, one thing that has become crystal clear this year is the importance of family and friends. We have come face to face with so many realities in our lives. The strength of our relationships with friends, family, neighbors and even strangers. With this in mind so many people have reached out to me to help them buy or sell properties. Often the reasons are financial. They have enjoyed a property for many years and have "aged out" of it or simply can't afford the taxes. This is sad in one sense but as one door closes another one opens. The family that parts with the property is freed of the burdens of maintaining it and paying for taxes, utilities and upkeep. The family that buys it now gets to fix it up to their style and enjoy it for the years to come. They create a stream of memories by the lake, campfire, hunting, hiking, BBQ'ing, parties and so much more. This is the cycle of life for homes, cabins, camps and even recreational land. It's why I love this business so much. Recently I helped a family part ways with a large tract of land. The property was thoroughly loved and enjoyed for 40 years. The new owner upgraded many aspects of it and will enjoy it with his family for years to come. There comes a time when it is evident that its time to sell. My advice is to not let that time be after the property has succumb to nature or is literally falling apart. You will get so much more money if the property is in good shape with functional structures. But whatever, the status of your property - please reach out if you are even considering selling. I am here to help make the process as smooth as possible. May 2021 bring us all good health, good memories and prosperity.