Saturday, January 5, 2013

It’s Not Too Late! Make a Real Estate Resolution for 2013



As 2012 came to a close the media was continuing to exalt the good news of a strengthening real estate market in the Minneapolis St Paul area. Home sellers that have their houses priced right are seeing multiple offers again. Home buyers  hoping to take advantage of the extremely low interest rates are starting to struggle to find the perfect new home. Many were confused because the internet sites are full of affordable listings but time and time again when their agent checked availability of the “PERFECT” home, it was “under contract waiting for third party approval”. Yes there are still short sales on the MLS, along with foreclosures…but the pricing isn’t as low as a few months ago. Town homes, single family, split levels, ramblers, two stories, remodels, foreclosures, short sales and new construction are now starting to slowly rise in cost across the Twin Cities.

As a REALTOR® serving White Bear Lake, Lino Lakes, Blaine, Ham Lake and communities in the Forest Lake School District, I keep a close eye on the Twin Cities real estate market. During the last few months of the year, I noticed bit of a change in the wind. Activity was starting to pick up. Traditional sellers were starting to see their homes being snatched up shortly after listing. Buyers found themselves in multiple offer situations and had to learn that “highest and best” could mean 10-20% above the price listed in the MLS. Negotiations were made and offers accepted. The Minneapolis St Paul metro area’s  real estate market took another positive step toward becoming balanced at the end of 2012.

So what does that mean for those considering purchasing a home or selling their property in 2013? From Ham Lake to Forest Lake and East Bethel to East St Paul we should strive to keep building a strong foundation to our real estate market. Keeping the property value base strong is essential to all Minnesotans. In 2013, we should all Resolve to be Real Estate Savvy!

Resolutions for Sellers

*Team up with a professional REALTOR®
*Price your home right from the start
*Make repairs before listing
*Declutter
*Make each showing count by staging
*Buyers are more educated so be willing to negotiate

Resolutions for Buyers

*Team up with a trusted REALTOR®
*Get Pre-approved and check in with your Loan Officer regularly
*Write realistic offers that encourage negotiation.
*Understand that a well-priced home will sell quickly, often with multiple offers
*Realize that a foreclosure and/or short sale property has many risks that will be assumed by the buyer. Inspections are essential.

Resolutions for Homeowners


*Even if 2013 won’t be the year for you to sell, there are things every homeowner should be doing to retain property value.
*Maintain the interior and exterior of your home by making repairs on a continual basis rather than deferring to time of sale.
*Stay current with your mortgage and discuss any financial problems with lender immediately.
*Be a good steward of your neighborhood.

Resolutions for Investors

*Team up with a professional REALTOR®
*If holding the property, offer a safe and maintained residence at a fair price to the renters.
*If flipping or repairing/reselling the property, be realistic with the numbers. Don’t do cheap repairs and expect big rewards. 2013 buyers are market wise!
*Be a good steward of your properties and the communities in which they are located.
*Maintain the properties to retain value for portfolio as well as the neighborhood.

If home buyers, home sellers, homeowners, investors and real estate professionals alike work together to maintain momentum we saw in the market at the end of 2012, the new year could bring continued recovery for the Minneapolis St Paul real estate market.


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