Monday, March 11, 2013

Does Your Realtor do Internet Marketing?

Does your real estate have an aggressive internet marketing campaign?  We're not talking about how a realtor markets their business on the internet - we're talking about how your realtor promotes your property listing on the internet.

In our opinion, it's not enough to put the listing in the multiple listing service ("MLS") and wait until the listing is "syndicated" to other websites.  Think of it in terms of "traditional" marketing of your property.  It's not enough to put a realtor "for sale" sign in front of the property and wait until buyers show up.

Today's successful real estate internet marketing campaign includes additional online promotion of property listings.  There's no one right way to do this - each agent has their own style, their own "tried and true" methods for online promotion that work in their area and in their marketplace.  For some agents, and in some areas, putting the listing on an internet classified ad website such as Craigslist draws potential buyers.  For other agents, and in other real estate market areas, adding the listing to a blog can draw an audience. Many agents will post the listing on social networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, etc. to promote the listing to their network of connections.  And other agents use videos to promote their listings.  All strategies are good - and can be effective ways to expand the marketing of a property online. We recommend that agents have their listings displayed on their personal real estate websites as well as on their company's real estate website - at a minimum. 

Home sellers can truly benefit from the online promotion of their property.  If you are a home seller, ask your realtor to explain their internet marketing campaign.  If you are a real estate agent, we'd like to know - what online tools work in your marketplace?

Internet marketing is important for any property listing.  The ability to reach a world-wide audience of potential buyers is amazing!  Shouldn't your property have that advantage?

Saturday, March 09, 2013

Social Benefits of Homeownership

The California Association of Realtors infographic on "The Social Benefits of Homeownership".  When you purchase a home in a community, you are putting down "roots" and have a vested interest in the community that you call home.   This leads to success in education, increased civic participation, and health benefits.  And, you should feel a sense of pride in what you have accomplished!

The Social Benefits of Homeownership

Thursday, February 28, 2013

California Home Prices - A History since 1970

Are you interested in history?  Take a look at this infographic from the California Association of Realtors -"California Home Prices - A History" from 1970 to present. 

History of California home prices from 1970 to present

Is the past a predictor of the future? No one can predict what will happen with California home prices in 2013 or beyond. But we find this infographic to be an interesting real estate economic study.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Housing Affordability Increases - Is it time to buy a home?

Recent national statistics indicate housing affordability is improving in the United States.  Many areas have seen an upward trend in home prices, while home buyers are still able to lock in a low mortgage interest rate.  It seems like the best of all worlds for the housing market.  For sellers, it means their home may sell in today's real estate market; while as recently as last year, homes were sitting on the market looking (hoping) for buyers.

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI) was released recently.  This index "is measure of the percentage of homes sold in a given area that are affordable to families earning the area’s median income during a specific quarter."   Specifically, the index shows that "74.9 percent of homes sold between the beginning of October and end of December were affordable to families earning the U.S. median income of $65,000."  This number is up from 74.1% in the third quarter of last year.

You can read more about the HOI here:  housing affordability index

While our area (Los Angeles) remains at the bottom of the ratings, home buyers in many other areas are seeing a real home buying opportunity - if they can survive the process.  Home buyers in many areas are reporting frustration as low inventory combined with an increased number of home buyers is creating a challenge for home buyers.  Home buyers are finding that their dream home has multiple offers and may sell for a premium (including a sales price over the listing price).  Home buyers are finding that the current listing is most likely selling for more than the last comparable sale.   From the suburbs of Washington, DC to the suburbs of Los Angeles, we are hearing the same reports from frustrated and weary home buyers. 

What remains to be seen is how the appraisers will deal with this price increase in their appraisal report.  Will the appraiser give "upward" value to the pending sale whose price exceeds the last sold comparable property?  In recent years, we have seen appraisers "ding" the appraised value of a property with the comment that the area is experiencing a downward price trend.  Will the appraisers now give the appraised value a "plus"?

Hang in there home buyers!  Patience and fortitude - you'll get the home of your dreams.  Now may be a "window" of opportunity for those who have been waiting and wanting to buy a home.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Number of California Real Estate Licensees Continues Trend

And the trend is downward.

If you will remember, we wrote about the declining number of California real estate licensees in January of 2012, covering data through October of 2011: Number of Real Estate Agents Continues to Decline

Now we can add another year into the statistics, and even bring the data up-to-date with the most recent month available (December, 2012) from the California Department of Real Estate:

Month, Year          Number of "salesperson" licensees

December, 2012   274,563
October,    2012    276,639
October,    2011    291,623
October,    2010    322,009
October,    2009    356,199
October,    2008    383,118
October,    2007    398,176
October,    2006    376,561
October,    2005    336,827

It will be interesting to watch the trend -  as the real estate market picks up will we see an upturn in the number of licensees?  Those of us who have been in the business - and this IS our business - just "roll with the punches" in any real estate market.  We're here for the "long haul."

Wishing everyone a happy President's Day!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Learn more about SRES - Senior Real Estate Specialist

There are many designations and certifications that a real estate agent can earn through experience and education.  Among one of our more valued designations is the Senior Real Estate Specialist (SRES®).

The SRES real estate agent has been educated on issues in today's real estate market that are unique to home buyers and sellers who are age 50 and older.  To best counsel their client, the SRES designee has been educated and has experience in the concerns, options, issues and decisions as they pertain to this growing segment of the population.   The SRES agent helps form a path to help their client move to that next chapter in their life - a path that involves not only money, but lifestyle choices as well.

If you are a real estate agent, we encourage you to consider obtaining your Senior Real Estate Specialist designation.

If you are thinking about selling or buying a property, and are age 50+, we suggest that you would benefit from the knowledge that a Senior Real Estate Specialist can bring to your transaction.

Read more about the designation here:  Senior Real Estate Specialist

Monday, December 10, 2012

Six Tax Facts for Home Sellers

Thinking about taxes and the tax consequences of selling your home? Take a look at this infographic from the California Association of Realtors - 6 Tax Facts Home Sellers Should Know.
Tax Facts Home Sellers Should Know

We suggest you consult with your tax and financial advisors as to the tax implications for your personal situation.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Homes Are Selling Like Hotcakes

The California Association of Realtors has come out with another of their infographics on the state of the real estate market. This one, titled "Homes Are Selling Like Hotcakes", shows the "days on market" for single family homes.

Homes Are Selling Like Hotcakes

How's the real estate market in your area?

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Walkability Affects Home Buying and Selling

The "walkability", measured as a "walk score" can affect a property's desirability.  Buyers can be influenced by their ability to walk from a home to shopping, restaurants and entertainment venues.  Take a look at this infographic from the California Association of Realtors.


In today's "green" environment, a property's "walk score" should be considered.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

California home buying process

An infographic from the California Association of Realtors.  This data shows how California home buyers are locating the home that they buy.  Home buyers are looking at fewer homes before buying, and an overwhelming percentage of home buyers are using a real estate agent to locate the home.  Very interesting statistics!

Caifornia home buying