Monday, March 24, 2014

Arizona Home Price Projections and Home Seller Expectations

The National Association of REALTORS® projects that home prices in Arizona will increase by 3% to 5% during the next 12 months, according to the latest Confidence Index survey. The survey includes responses from over 50,000 professional real estate practitioners throughout the United States, and considers home price trends and overall market conditions.

As mentioned in prior blog posts, Phoenix-Scottsdale real estate benefits from a strengthening local economy and continued investor activity. This bodes well for Fountain Hills home sellers who are entering the market this year. However, sale price expectations need to remain realistic, and homes still need to be prepared for the market to obtain the best offers. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

1. Lending standards have eased somewhat, but buyers remain challenged by the approval process.  Pricing your home according to current market values helps prevent problems with bank appraisals.

2. According to an article in the Phoenix Business Journal, new construction home sales have slowed during the early months of 2014. The median price of a newly-built home was about $290,000 in February; down from $301,000 during December 2013. While the article does not point to a specific reason, it's likely that buyers are finding better deals among the inventory of existing homes for sale. Newly constructed homes are impacted by material costs that have been steadily rising.

For the time being, existing homes have an advantage over new construction when it comes to price. But if builders begin to aggressively discount new homes, it could soften the values of similar properties in the area.

3. All real estate is local. Fountain Hills home values could outpace the projections for Arizona home values - or fall a bit short of those projections. Rather than count on a market trend to lift your home value, it's wiser to keep your home in the best possible condition - and invest in the repairs and improvements it needs to draw the best offers.

4. Being inflexible on price and terms can kill a deal, even if market trends are in your favor. According to the Confidence Index prepared by the National Association of REALTORS®, lack of agreement over price accounted for 11% of transaction failures. This isn't to say that you have to take any offer that comes along, but you should be aware of current values and be flexible within reason.

If you are thinking of selling your Fountain Hills home, now is the time to obtain expert advice and prepare for the market! Get started with my free e-book, "450 Ways to Sell Your Home Faster!"

Ready to find out what your Fountain Hills home is worth on the market? Contact me for your free home value and marketing consultation!

Tina Nabers
Nabers Property Management & Real Estate

Monday, March 10, 2014

Will Fountain Hills home buyers find fewer homes and higher prices?

Real estate trends for the Phoenix-Scottsdale metropolitan area are pointing to higher home demand throughout 2014, according to a recent HousingWire article. At first glance, it would appear that we could expect fewer homes on the market in Fountain Hills as a result.

But like all statistics and news headlines, it pays to look at the details within the facts! Let's break down what's happening and how it may affect Fountain Hills real estate.

First, the good news: home demand is up and likely to remain steady through 2014. Our local economy is adding jobs, and Arizona continues to attract new residents. We also have "boomerang buyers" returning to the housing market, thanks to a forgiving mortgage program by the FHA. We also have investors who continue to absorb distressed properties.

All these elements help support our improving home values, which is great news for Fountain Hills home sellers! Of course, many would-be sellers who postponed placing their homes on the market in recent years may be ready to test the water in 2014. As more home sellers enter the market, the resulting increase in home supply could tame future price increases.

However, the entry-level price ranges, generally including homes priced under $150,000, will continue to face limited inventory. This is where Fountain Hills home buyers will have some challenges. While we have fewer cash buyers in the market today, they are not limiting their investments to distressed properties. As foreclosures and short sales become harder to find, investors are casting their nets wider to secure affordable properties that will appeal to new households.

Will Fountain Hills home buyers find fewer homes on the market in 2014, and face higher prices? As it stands, this is very possible for price ranges below $150,000. This does not mean you won't be able to find an affordable home - but it does mean you should be pre-approved for your mortgage and work with an Accredited Buyer Representative who can help you!

For those of you thinking of selling your Fountain Hills home, now is the time to obtain expert advice and prepare for your opportunities on the market. Get started with my free e-book, "450 Ways to Sell Your Home Faster!"

Buying or selling Fountain Hills real estate? Contact me for your personal real estate consultation!

Tina Nabers
Nabers Property Management & Real Estate