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Fall in Love this Sunday!

Join us on Sunday February 14th and fall in love with a new home!

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This Valentine’s Day join us from 11:00 – 3:00 to learn more about The Village At Sterling Hill and how you can reserve your new home in our newest building! Sunday February 14th.

2016 Predictions – Mortgage Rates & Home Sales Rising with Refinancing Dropping

Over at CoreLogic.com there is a lot of analysis of the housing and mortgage markets, including foreclosure information. Recently CoreLogic released their report 2016 Housing and Mortgage Rates Forecast.

They report that expectations for 2016 show that the Fed will probably raise short term interest rates by one percentage point gradually over the year. This is expected to cause mortgage interest rates to rise by around a half point, to around 4.5% for the 30-year fixed rate mortgage. Those of us who remember rates in the past averaging more in the 6% to 8% range probably aren’t too excited about these historically low rates.

However, particularly with first time home buyers, the mortgage interest rate influences the amount of the payments and the value of the home loan for which they can qualify. Even with discouraging mortgage rate increases, a modest increase in the number of home sales over those in 2015 is expected. Refinancing activity is expected to drop however.

An improving labor market is expected to spur household formations in 2016, with 1.25 million new households expected. More households will spur demand for both purchases and rentals, but rentals will get the most pressure. With rental vacancies already at the lowest levels in 20 years, rents should be rising more. This could move some buyers from renting back into the market.

Even with just a modest increase in the number of sales, it’s still going to be another consecutive year with more sales than in any year since 2007. Rising demand is going to help prices to continue to rise. The CoreLogic Home Price Index showed a year over year increase of 6% over the past 12 months.

It’s been a whole new housing analytical world since the housing and mortgage crash. We still have owners holding on and not listing, and that’s keeping inventories low. Depressed inventory is as responsible for rising prices as modestly increasing demand. First time home buyers are still avoiding the market in droves compared to pre-crash historical numbers.

At some point low inventories and rising demand could bring prices to a level that will bring sellers back into the market. Many are still making up for equity lost during the crash, and some are still underwater in their mortgages. When they do start listing in more normal numbers, then we could see some slowing of price increases and maybe more demand.

It’s tough predicting the new real estate markets. CoreLogic is one of many companies publishing reports and projections. I’m sure you can find others with different conclusions, and real estate investors have a constant stream of date through which to sift for trends. We are constantly evaluating our markets and seeking opportunities. I don’t see anything really negative about rental investing over the next few years, so have fun!

huffingtonpost.com – 2016 Predictions – Mortgage Rates & Home Sales Rising with Refinancing Dropping by Dean Graziosi

How to Prepare Your Home for the Winter

The winter months can be difficult for homeowners as they face increased utility usage and weather conditions that can cause damage to the home. Kiplinger.com recently posted a slideshow advising of 15 ways to prepare your home for the winter.

Their suggestions include:
• Tune up your heating system
• Reverse your ceiling fan
• Steps to prevent ice dams
• Check your roof for damaged, loose, or missing shingles
• Caulk around windows and doors
• Clean the gutters
• Divert water
• Turn off exterior faucets
• Drain your lawn – irrigation system
• Mulch leaves when you mow
• Prepare your mower for winter storage
• Wait until late winter to prune trees and shrubs
• Test your sump pumps
• Clean chimney and vents

To view Kiplinger’s entire slide show: http://www.kiplinger.com/slideshow/real-estate/T029-S001-12-ways-to-prepare-your-home-for-winter/index.html

Top 10 Reasons Home Buyers Prefer New Homes vs. Used

The following article by Jay McKenzie recently appeared on NewHomesSource.com.  It makes some very good points.  We’d be happy to talk to you about our new homes at The Villages at Sterling Hill.  Give us a call any time at (603) 778-1800.

Today’s new homes offer more benefits than ever before. Here’s a quick list of the Top 10 reasons why so many home buyers prefer new homes to used houses:

1) Design Your Dream Home Your Way: Why settle for someone else’s choices when you can select your favorite cabinets, countertops, appliances, carpets and flooring? While you’re at it, you can choose gorgeous bath and kitchen fixtures, lighting and other options that you love. Your new home will reflect your style, not someone else’s taste.

2) Choose a Floor Plan and Room Layout that Meets Your Needs: Want a master bedroom on the first floor? It’s yours. With massive his and her’s walk-in closets? Done! Want high ceilings and a luxurious, resort-style master bath? Perhaps you’d like a sitting room with a fireplace in your owner’s suite or French doors that open to your private patio or the pool? It’s easy, when you build your master suite your way.

3) All New, Under Warranty: A used home likely has tired products that may soon need replacing. Your new home — and the products that comprise it — are brand-new and under warranty. What’s the cost to replace a roof, appliances, countertops or a water heater on a used home? Those components of your new home feature the latest designs and building materials and should offer you years of comfort and enjoyment before needing replacement.

4) Energy and Cost Savings: Today’s new homes are far more energy efficient than homes built just five years ago. Versus homes built ten or 20 years ago, it’s game over, advantage new.Why settle for drafty, energy-wasting single-pane windows in a used home? Many new homes offer double or even triple-pane windows. Special window coatings and inert gases between the layers of glass are often available, saving you even more energy and money in both heating and cooling season.

5) Comfort and Indoor Air Quality: Today’s new homes meet stringent energy standards and codes not in place in the past. They combine high-performance energy efficiency with state-of-the-art ventilation and air filtration. The result is year-round, draft-free comfort and higher indoor air quality.

6) Low Maintenance: New cars today are computer-designed and computer-equipped. That’s why they perform much more reliably than a car that’s 15 or 20 years old. Homes are the same. Today’s new homes have open floor plans and high ceilings that reflect the way we live today. They’re also made of cutting-edge building products that require less care and maintenance. Another plus? The latest building systems and components are designed and engineered to work together.

7) Community Amenities: Many new homes are built in lavish master-planned communities with resort-style community centers, pools and clubhouses. Many new home communities also feature hiking trails, protected open lands and some of the best new schools and shopping near (or even within) your new home community.

8) Advanced Technology and Design: It’s possible to replace all of the single-pane windows in a resale home with today’s high-performance windows. It’s also possible to add insulation to a used home. However, it’s very expensive to replace dated appliances, cabinets and countertops in a used home — and you still won’t have the high ceilings you dream of on the first floor of an older two-story home. All are reasons to build your new home your way, to reflect the way you live today.

9) Safety: State-of-the-art circuit breakers. Electric garage door openers with infrared beams that stop if a tricycle or child is too near. High-efficiency furnaces and air conditioners that use the latest environmentally-friendly coolants. Cabinets, carpets and paints that use fewer volatile organic compounds, so that you and your family can breathe easier.

10) That New Home Feel: A used home was someone else’s dream, not yours. It reflects their choices and family memories. You may learn to love avocado-green appliances (and you may be willing to scrub stained countertops or grease-encrusted ovens and cooktops) but more and more people prefer that never lived-in feel.

After all, when was the last time you went to a department store and selected used clothes? Or visited a car dealer and paid more for a used car than a new car?

New homes offer the latest designs, style, comfort and quality. They provide a care-free lifestyle so that you can enjoy your home, not work on it. Start shopping now on NewHomeSource.com, the world’s largest and most complete new home website. You’ll be glad you did.

http://www.newhomesource.com/resourcecenter/articles/top-10-reasons

10 Quick Tips to Showing Your Home

Image - tipsYou’ve heard it before and we’ll tell you again; first impressions matter! This most definitely applies when potential buyers view your on-the-market home. We asked our industry experts what you, the homeowner, can do to make a positive impression on those visitors. Their top ten tips:

  • Clean Everything
  • Maintain the Exterior
  • Brighten Rooms
  • Make Repairs
  • Remove Personal Property
  • Remove Pets
  • Paint Neutral
  • Organize and De-clutter
  • Hire a Home Inspector
  • Disclose Everything

It’s not easy but so worth it! Good luck and happy home selling!

Housing Continues Improvement

On August 25, 2015 the National Association of Home Builders posted this article, written by David Crose, on its Eye On Housing page.

July new homes sales rose 5.4 percent from June and 25.8 percent from July 2014, joining other improving housing market indicators. The increase brings annual new home sales to 507,000, or just over half way back to a normal year. New home sales are greatly dependent on existing home sales since three-quarters or more of new homes are purchased by existing home owners. In turn, existing home owners are becoming more willing and able to sell their homes as equity positions improve and the employment market grows and provides more security that employment will continue.

Median new home prices increased 2 percent from July 2014 and average prices increased 4.8 percent. Actual sale prices have increased because the composition of homes sold has shift away from starter or first time buyer homes and towards move-up buyers. At the same time, builders are facing higher costs for labor and lots. That trend will continue as the home building industry continues to expand and must pay higher prices for the resources needed. Material costs have remained calm as the world economy slows and demand from other markets have cooled.

New home inventories increased in July to 218,000, the highest level in more than five years (March 2010). The continued expansion of new homes for sale is another confirming sign that builders expect the sales market to continue it improvement just as they expressed in the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index.housing inventory 8.27.15

Inventories of existing homes however have not improved significantly for several years. More existing homes on the market will help feed the first time home buyer delayed demand as well as free up current home owners to buy a new home.

Interior Design; Mixing Finishes in Décor

By Stephanie Morrison, Morr Interiors

Design evolves and elements used in interior design over years ago are now making a comeback.  One in particular is brass.  However, not the sheen we’re used to seeing.  Since it has evolved and I’ve mixed this finish with others in a plethora of designs, I’ve decided to share with you my thoughts, as well as another, the use of “text” in décor.

As a model home merchandiser, furnishing model homes for builders in residential communities, I have the opportunity to blend elements in rooms and leave people with a memorable ilow rez_1511_rt_w3 _sp_ftmpression.  When a homeowner buying into the community calls and wants to hire you for your services and says “I loved the pillow on the sofa that read R-­‐E-­‐L-­‐A-­‐X it made me feel right at home,” this resonates within you and makes you feel they’ve enjoyed the space.  Some rooms don’t need to feel like a billboard.  Sometimes you can peak interest in the littlest details, which is all about execution.  I love the use of phrases or letters in décor.  To me, it makes a space feel personal and adds charm.  “Relax” “Keep Calm” or an alphabet letter as artwork that represents the homeowner’s first or last name, sends a message to our brain and makes us remember the space.

One of my personal favorites is throwing caution to the wind and diving into this trend of mixing warm metals, such as copper and rose gold, with cool ones like silver.  It’s become a very popular modern day trend.  Bright gold with a sleek finish, mixed with black on light fixtures or end tables makes a retro statement.  It’s not the typical brass gold finish we were used to seeing in the 80’s and replaced in the new century.  As a designer, I’m no longer interested in matching every metal finish in a single room… “It’s too staged.”  Adding black or silver is riskier and highly stylish.

You do have to find a way to balance the colors and once you do, I think you’ll see how warm this finish is now.

Mortgage Rates and Greater Boston Real Estate Market Soars

By Allyson Kreycik, Senior Loan Officer, Guaranteed Rate

The start to 2015 has been one for the record books in the Greater Boston Real Estate Market! We’ve all been busGrowing home salesy! We are seeing consumer confidence being at its highest in the past few years. Buyers feel comfortable making the move and pulling the trigger on a new home. It helps that mortgage rates continue to be at near record lows with the 30 year fixed rates staying under 4.00%. We are seeing banks start to relax a little in guidelines on down payment and credit scores. Fannie Mae will now do 3% down payment programs. FHA reduced their monthly Private Mortgage Insurance rates. The conventional loan limits for Greater Boston increased to $517,500.   All good things if you are a buyer.

As a seller it has been the best time to sell as we are seeing prices per square foot that we have not seen before in Boston.   As a buyer – although rates are great – the low inventory can be frustrating as it leads to bidding wars, risky offers with waiving financing, appraisal and even home inspection contingencies just to have a competitive offer.

My advice. Be prepared by getting the information you need a head of time.   If you have to spend a few extra thousand for the home of your dreams know that in the long run it will amount to a cup of coffee each month. Hire a professional Real Estate Agent that knows your market to help guide you as you make one of the biggest purchases of your life and enjoy the process- a little drama can be fun!

New Homes Sales Favorable Through 2016

New homes sales are expected to rise 38 percent from 2014 year end base.  The number has been flat for too long and with rising home starts, increasing price projections, and favorable lending rates and underwriting, new homes sales are expected to be favorable for the next few years. With low interest rates, low housing supply, and rising prices, now is a good time to buy and take advantage of the expected appreciation.

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Exeter Halloween Festivities

Come see all the ghosts and goblins this Friday, October 31 at the Park & Recreation Department’s Annual Halloween Parade from 3:30-5:30 at Swasey Parkway.

October 30th from 4:00 PM to 7 PM – Exeter’s Annual Trick or Treat tradition is celebrated the night before Halloween.

Call today to schedule your personal preview

(603) 365-1204

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