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Sold Your Home? Downsizer’s Guide to Stress-Free Moving

downsizing

Moving to a new home is an exciting time, but it is also a monumental task that can leave you feeling overwhelmed. This is especially true when downsizing. What others may see as clutter is your life lived as you remember it. We’ve put together a few simple strategies to help you get moving, and take some memories along with you.

What is Up with the Crazy Lumber Prices?

lumberprices

If you are in the market for any type of wood—from plywood or sheeting to standard 2x4s, be prepared for a massive sticker shock. U.S. lumber futures contracts for May 2021 delivery were priced at $1,645 per 1,000 board feet, about 60% higher than they were a month ago and 374% above the $347 contract price average in May 2020. This marks the fastest rise since the housing boom that followed World War II.

With a shortage of inventory of homes for sale in pretty much every U.S. market, the construction industry had risen. But with lumber prices soaring, starts are well below their previous highs.

A Year In- Our COVID Housing Market

covid home sale

While a public health crisis gripped the country for the last year, the housing market for some stayed red hot. Most areas of the country remain in a solid seller’s market. Homeowners have seen their home values appreciate and equity grow. Housing inventory was already down at the beginning of the pandemic, and remains low. However, demand remains high. Not everyone was hurt bad enough by the downturn in the economy to hold off buying a home. With historically low interest rates throughout the year, there have been plenty of buyers ready to snap up just about anything that appears on the market. At the same time, people that want to move, especially those looking for affordable housing, are having a difficult time, because there are just not enough homes for sale.

2nd Free Webinar: What to Expect After Listing Your Home

listing a home for sale

Part II of our series for home sellers continues with an inside look at what happens, from the time you sign a listing agreement, including how homeowners can maximize the potential of their home sale. A fun, no pressure way to become more informed and ask questions, especially in the unusual market we are in right now in West Central Minnesota. Karen Zell of Homes and Lakeshore / Keller Williams Realty Professionals is the upbeat presenter for this new online series to demystify both the selling and buying process. Includes free local Moving Guide with registration.

Free Online Webinar Provides Home Selling Tips

Are you looking for an easy way to become more informed about the home selling process in West Central Minnesota? Karen Zell of Homes and Lakeshore / Keller Williams Realty Professionals has a new online series to demystify both the selling and buying process.

Take Care of These Top 6 Tasks Before Selling

home maintenance

To get top dollar when selling your home, there’s no question a well-kept home will sell better, even if you have moved out. Be sure to address small fixes (broken doorbells or leaky faucets) so buyers aren’t left to wonder if there are bigger problems you are trying to hide. Here are six more often-overlooked areas that should be corrected.

Buying a Home While Selling

buying a home while selling

It can be exiting to buy a new home. However, if you are trying to sell a home at the same time as buying it can be stressful, especially if money from your current home’s sale is needed to put toward your next home. However, with a little planning and working with a savvy real estate agent can ease the process for both of these transactions.

To keep your sanity intact, here are some tips to help you manage the process.

Should You Downsize Your Home?

downsizing

Many people find themselves downsizing, motivated by debt, an empty nest or retirement. However, determining how much smaller to go can be tricky.

Finance guru Dave Ramsey says the average family in America has “plenty of room to downsize their home without cramping their style.” According to the United States Census Bureau, Ramsey elaborates that in the 1950s, middle-income Americans homes were around 1,000 square feet or less, as opposed to today’s typically 2,600 square feet plus – new single-family home.

Where Are Mortgage Rates Headed in 2021?

Mortgage Rates

2020 was an odd year for the mortgage industry. Instead of a market crash due to the pandemic and economic turmoil, home prices and sales actually rose. At the beginning, low-interest rates, low unemployment, and rising rents drove the housing market up. As the pandemic wore on, people fleeing urban areas, or looking for more space to work from home, plus historically low interest rates kept demand for housing high. The important question is, where will interest rates go now?

Industry experts expect mortgage rates to rise in 2021. If you are not planning to buy or sell in the coming year, then hopefully you have refinanced, or will soon. We strongly encourage those thinking about selling to list now. There are still many people looking to buy, but the market will be changing. No one can predict with certainty how high mortgage interest rates will go or when, but four top experts weighing in with their thoughts and rationale, giving us a pretty good glimpse of where we are headed in 2021.

Housing Market Crash or Rise in 2021?

housing future

Instead of just relying a crystal ball, there are some facts that help predict what will happen to home buying and selling in the coming year.

Throughout the pandemic, residential real estate markets across the country have remained steady, and most have even seen growth. While we feel for those that are truly suffering due to COVID-19 related losses, there are positive economic indicators for the future. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s Center for Microeconomic Data released a consumer survey of responses in September 2020 entitled Survey of Consumer Expectations showing less pessimistic views about personal financials in the year ahead due to improvements in the labor market and spending expectations.