Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Is YOUR Real Estate Agent a Dabbler?


A decade ago, during the first big real estate surge, I was an agent. I started in the business a few years prior to when everything exploded. I didn’t become an agent because there was “easy” money to be made. I transitioned out of a corporate marketing job to help people through the complicated process of buying and/or selling a home. And when the going got tough, I didn’t hang up my license or take up a part time job for cash. I was a REALTOR® and in the business for the long haul. 

Once again the housing market is strong. And with the strong market come hundreds of new agents (and those dusting off their licenses that have been on ice for since 2007). These dabblers are jumping back into the real estate game. Often they start by contacting friends and relatives to “help” them as their first clients. Is your agent one of these real estate dabblers

Why it Matters 

One of the many things I have learned is that real estate is a business of continuous education and change. REALTORS® who are in it as a profession learn something from every transaction and apply it to their next deal.  A new agent or one who sells a home or two a year doesn’t have that bank of education to draw from.  This helps with negotiation when reviewing offers and writing an offer that will make the cut in a multiple offer situation. This is essential when assessing properties with a first time home buyer and determining the best list price for a property. 

My experience helping home buyers and sellers whether their move was during a down market or in this most recent upswing is invaluable to my clients. I put this knowledge to work to help them make the best decisions for their situation. In the past few months, my expertise has saved my client’s thousands of dollars regardless of whether buying or selling. Dabblers don’t have this expertise.

Who do you want on your side? A seasoned professional or a dabbler?

READY TO MAKE YOUR MOVE? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.
 

Copyright 2016 terieckholm.com

Friday, July 8, 2016

It's a Crazy Market for First Time Buyers!




I haven't written a blog post since March. It's not that I have been slacking off or there is nothing to write about in the Minneapolis/St Paul real estate market. On the contrary, I have been just too darn busy writing offers for buyers. (And fielding them for my sellers). It is not a market where you write one offer per buyer when they find their perfect dream home. Oh no, I am talking multiple offers for the same buyers on dream home after dream home until they get an offer that is accepted.

First time home buyers are having the most difficult time with this market. They don't have time to think or process whether or not the house is a good investment. They have to make a decision and write up an offer immediately. And not just any reasonable starting offer, it has to be a good offer because 9 times out of 10, there will be multiple offers.

Advice for Home Buyers

1. Work with an EXPERIENCED Realtor. My 15+ years of experience means something. I know how to negotiate and write a good offer that will increase your chances of getting it accepted. There are tricks to this trade and an experienced agent will coach buyers to write the best offer for the situation.


2. Be Preapproved. Your offer will not be taken seriously if it doesn't have a pre-approval letter (or proof of funds when paying cash).

Advice for Sellers



If you are selling in this market, it might cross your mind that you do not need an agent. Statistics show that homes sell faster and for more money if it is listed on with an agent. There are numerous hiccups in a home sale that can arise in a frantic market like we are seeing in the Twin Cities metro. Not only is it difficult to assess multiple purchase agreements should there be more than one offer. Buyers rush writing offers to get in first. This often leads to buyer' remorse before the sale closes. There is additional negotiation that happens after the inspection. With a good agent by your side, a seller can focus on packing rather than dealing with the details of the closing process.

READY TO MAKE YOUR MOVE? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.
 

Copyright 2016 terieckholm.com




Sunday, March 13, 2016

Snapshot of Home Sales Statistics in Andover, MN Year End 2015




Overall the Andover real estate market continues to remain strong.  Closed sales are up once significantly but there was a drop in new listings. This lack of inventory is putting home sellers in the driver’s seat of the housing market Closed sales are up nearly 20% .Since there are several new home construction developments in Andover it is no surprise that the percent received of original listing price is up too. New homes always cost a bit more per square foot than existing homes. In 2015, the average sales price rose again from almost $254K to nearly $267K! This is up $50,000 from just 3 years ago! Likewise the average price per square foot in Andover rose from $94/sq ft in 2012 to an average of $113/foot in 2015. Another sign that the market has turned is the drop in days on the market. It took an average of 88 days to sell an Andover home in 2014 but less than 70 days to sell on average in 2015. This is less than half of the time it took to sell an Andover MN, home just a few years ago.

With inventory low and demand high, sellers will find 2016 a good year to list their Andover homes. Existing home inventory levels are low for homes in this growing Anoka County community. It appears to be a seller’s market, where sellers have the negotiating advantage as we begin 2016. With continued low interest rates, home buyers are out in full force searching for their dream homes. Home owners considering selling in 2016 and hoping to get the most leverage from the improved market should consider listing their homes before the spring market really cranks up which will bring in additional competition no doubt. 
 





READY TO MAKE A MOVE? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.
 

Copyright 2016 terieckholm.com

Monday, March 7, 2016

Snapshot of Home Sales Statistics in Chisago, MN Year End 2015





The real estate market is once again strong in Chisago, MN at the end of 2015. Overall, the housing market remained quite active in the Minneapolis/St Paul metro, and the Chisago housing market is no exception. New listings were relatively flat but the number of closed homes sold jumped over 18%. Likewise, the average sales price was nearly 18% higher 2015 compared to the previous year, coming in at just under $260,000. This is quite an improvement from just a few years ago when the average sales price was just $189K. Sellers are receiving nearly 98% of asking price in 2015. Market time dropped significantly too. It now takes an average of 86 days on the market to sell a Chisago home. While this is higher than other metro suburbs, it is significantly less than a few years ago when it would take over four months to sell a Chisago City home. The price per square foot in Chisago is also heading up. It now stands at $137/sq. ft., compared to an average of $122/sq. ft. in the previous year. Home owners considering selling in Chisago would be well advised to put their homes on the market early in 2016. With low housing inventory, sellers seem to have a bit of the upper hand in this community at this point in time.



READY TO MAKE A MOVE? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.
 

Copyright 2016 terieckholm.com

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Back to Basics—When the First Time Buyer is Your First Born



Buying a first house is difficult whether you’re in your mid-20’s or mid-30’s or really at any age. Over the years I have assisted people making this first big purchase in every age group from 18 on up. No matter the age, there are things that must be considered to be a successful homeowner. Buying a home should not be on a whim but a thought out plan. I always let a buyer make their own final decision but I do offer helpful advice throughout the home buying process.
My kids have grown up watching my educational sales process. Often I would have to pick them up from their elementary school and head directly to an afternoon showing with them in tow. They sat in the back of the minivan with snacks and Gameboys but I know they could occasionally hear conversations through the windows. 


Now my oldest is in that process of graduating from renter to home buyer. This is somewhat of a challenge for both of us requiring me to rely on my basic approach to educate rather than just say “don’t buy that one”. Over the years I have seen parents have to resort to a “tough love” approach with their children buying a first home. Sometimes it backfires even when the parents are right. The buyers are trying to spread their wings and make their first major adult purchase. It can be embarrassing to them when a parent vetoes their decision on their dream home. 


My job has been a balancing act of educating both parents and the buyer to somehow make everyone happy. After all, the buyer will have to live in the house and pay for updates and repairs whether Mom & Dad like the house or not. It is better for all concerned if they have come to some sort of understanding before the purchase agreement is signed that this particular home is the buyer’s best option.


Now as the parent of the buyer, it is a bit of a different ballgame. I get to educate the buyer while letting him make his own decision. So it is back to basics….


1.    Get pre-approved by a good, reputable loan officer to pre-approve prior to starting the home search.
2.    Make a list of target areas to live in. Understand how different municipalities and properties taxes can fluctuate greatly.
3.    Decide what features are “must haves” in a house. Educate on how to read an MLS listing for things like foundation type and size, heating source, and room sizes. Scan the photos for possible issues like asbestos siding, deteriorating driveway or gigantic trees to narrow down the "must see list".  Eliminate any home with an issue that might be a huge expense down the road. 
4.    Remember not to get too invested in a specific house until after the offer is accepted and the inspection is done. 


Putting my 20+ years of experience as a REALTOR® and homeowner to use to help a home buyer understand the basics is one of the services I provide. Not just to my family, but to all of my first time buyers.  


Helping this particular home buyer will be a bit more of an adventure. But like everything else, one step at a time.


Are you ready to buy YOUR First Home? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota. 
Copyright 2016 terieckholm.com
 

Snapshot of Home Sales Statistics in Centerville MN Year End 2015





The average sales price in homes in Centerville jumped quite a bit year over year from 2014 to 2015 in this eastern Anoka County community. The rest of the statistics tell a similar and very optimistic story for Centerville real estate. The price per square footage of Centerville homes is up from $116/sq ft in 2014 to $129/sq ft in 2015. Compare this to just a few years ago in 2012 when the price per square foot for a Centerville home was less than $100. Days on the market for homes in this community has continued to drop with homes selling in less than 2 months on average. While this is down significantly from 2014, it is dramatic compared to 2012 when the average time on the market in this community was over 5 months. Another indicator of a strong housing market is that area home sellers received much closer to asking price for the fourth consecutive year as the percent received on asking price rose to 97.4% in 2015. New listings have increased but closed sales were up even more so inventory levels continue to be low creating a bit of a seller’s market.

With inventory low and demand high, sellers will find 2016 a good year to list their Centerville homes. Existing home inventory levels are low for homes in this Anoka County community that has a good mix of single family homes and townhomes with a price point perfect for the first time home buyer. This area definitely has all the indications of turning into a seller’s market, where sellers have the negotiating advantage. With continued low interest rates, home buyers are out their looking for the perfect place to call home. Home owners considering selling in 2016 and wanting to get the most leverage from the improved market should consider listing their homes before the spring market hits as there will be additional competition no doubt.



READY TO MAKE A MOVE? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.
 

Copyright 2016 terieckholm.com

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Snapshot of Home Sales Statistics in White Bear Lake, MN Year End 2015



The housing market in White Bear Lake, Minnesota remained strong but was a  bit flat overall from 2014 to 2015. This northeast suburb of the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area had almost the exact same numbers of new homes listed on the market in year over year in 2015. There was a sizable increase in closed sales up by a dramatic 15%. Interestingly, this was on par with 2013 numbers so the lack of inventory in 2014 might have contributed to lower sales. The real estate demand is remains high and the market strong. The average price of a home rose by  3.5% in White Bear Lake going from $208,914 in 2014 to $216,127 in 2015. This raised the average price per square foot accordingly; going from $118/sq ft to $121/sq ft. The average days-on-the-market statistic was slightly higher in 2015. It took an average 71 days to sell this past year but this is still down significantly from the average 88 DOM in 2013. Sellers remain in a strong negotiating position and offers are being accepted very close to the listed price. Last year sellers in the White Bear Lake area received an average of 97.1% of asking price.

As we start 2016, housing inventory levels are very low for homes in the White Bear Lake area which has created more of a seller’s market, giving the negotiating advantage to a home seller. With continued low interest rates, home buyers seeking their dream homes started very early this year. Home owners considering selling in 2016 and wanting to take advantage of the improved market do not need to wait for the spring market to start. It is here! With home inventory is low, the negotiating edge goes to the seller but as more homes list, this opportunity could be reduced considerably.






READY TO MAKE A MOVE? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.
 

Copyright 2016 terieckholm.com

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Snapshot of Home Sales Statistics in Maplewood, MN Year End 2015



The housing market in Maplewood, Minnesota remained strong and steady throughout 2015. Similar to other communities in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro, this Ramsey County city has real estate sales statistics remained solid with abundant sales and new listings. Both the number of new listings and closed sales were up from 2014 and the average sold price was steady coming in slightly lower than last year at just under $200K. Keep in mind; just four years ago the average price of a home was over $50K less at $146,957. Continued sales at a steady price show a solid comeback for housing sales in the area.

Back in 2011, Maplewood homes were bringing in an average price per square foot of $82 which was similar to many other communities in the northeast Minneapolis/St. Paul area at that time. In 2015, Maplewood home sellers saw the price per square foot rise a tad over the 2014 price to $108 on average but significantly higher than four years ago.  Sellers continue to get about 96% of their asking price in 2015 but the time to sell a home has decreased.  The average time on the market to sell a home was down significantly from 2014, taking an average of 69 days to sell. Compare this to the 164 average days on market (DOM) statistic in 2011 to realize just how big the rebound of the Maplewood market has been. A limited housing inventory will continue to push prices up slightly and homes appear to be selling at a somewhat brisk pace. Maplewood home owners considering selling in 2015 might want to get their home listed early. The housing market is strong and  inventory is low giving a slight edge to sellers when  a home is well priced and properly prepared to list.

SEARCH for Maplewood Homes

 
What is MY Maplewood Worth?

READY TO MAKE A MOVE? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.
 

Copyright 2016 terieckholm.com

Snapshot of Home Sales Statistics in Forest Lake, MN Year End 2015



At the end of 2015 there were only 2.5 months of inventory in the Forest Lake area for single family homes including all condos, townhomes and new construction. The housing market in Forest Lake is stable and stronger than has been in several years though it has come back slower than communities closer to the Minneapolis/St Paul metro.  New listings were up a substantial 13% from 2014 to 2015 and closed sales up a whopping 36.4%. This is most likely due to abundant new construction in the area. The continued lack of inventory throughout the metro has pushed buyers north but that has not had a significant effect on the sales price.  Prices in this north metro suburb were 2% under the average price in 2015 but home sellers have little to complain about as this is still well above a few years back when the average price was under $200,000. Days on market in 2015 were down a tad but it sellers still waited almost 3 months on average for a buyer. Average price per square foot rose from $114/sq ft in 2014 to $122/sq ft last year. This is comparable to other communities in the Washington County/east Anoka County area. Solid sales prices and low inventory would give a slight market edge to sellers in the Forest Lake area as we head into the 2015 spring market.

SEARCH for Forest Lake Homes

What is my Forest Lake Home Worth?



READY TO MAKE A MOVE? Let me be your professional guide. If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Teri Eckholm of Boardman Realty, a call or visit my website for a FREE Home Buyer Success Guide or FREE Home Value Report. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District. Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.
 

Copyright 2016 terieckholm.com