Real Estate News

The Keys to Successfully Buying in a Seller’s Market


Being a buyer in a seller’s market can be tough. Here’s how you can accomplish your goals more easily.

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It’s tough to be a buyer right now in our aggressive seller’s market. The best houses are receiving multiple offers and selling within days. In the $150,000 to $300,000 price range, the market is especially aggressive. So, how do you compete as a buyer?

It all comes down to preparation in a number of different areas....

Thanks to our wonderful clients!



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As you may already know, we recently hosted a client appreciation event at Base Camp in Fort Snelling. There were too many people to thank individually who made 2016 such a wonderful year for us, so we threw a party.

We had a bouncy castle and slide, a ropes course, a climbing wall, an archery range, magician, and plenty of other games and entertainment for all the families that came. We were honored to be able to give back to so many people, and we can’t wait to be able to do it again soon.

If you were there, we were glad to have you. If you weren’t able to make it, ...

What's in Store for the Twin Cities Market in 2017?


Today we wanted to bring you a quick recap of what we saw in the Twin Cities market in 2016 and also give some predictions for the market going forward in 2017.

Last year ended up being a great one in our market, going from an average of having around 15,000 homes on the market at any given time in 2015 to about 13,000 in 2016. That's a 16% drop in the amount of homes for sale in our market. This low inventory led to a big decline in the average days on market for a home, from 41 in 2015 down to 33 days in 2016.

Homes are simply selling much faster, and that's fantastic.

As you might expect, both of these factors have led to an increase in median sales price. It's up just over 5% to about $232,000 for the median sales price in our market. When we think back to that 12-month period around 2011 when our market was at its lowest point, there were about 36,000 home sales. Over 50% of those were lender-mediated,...

Twin Cities Real Estate Market Update


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Selling a home? Click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation

At the beginning of the year, we predicted that the Twin Cities real estate market would continue to improve throughout the year, and we’re seeing this improvement in real time with many of our sellers getting multiple offers on their homes within just a few days on the market.

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What Does a Seller’s Market in the Twin Cities Mean for You?

Buying a home? Click here to perform a full home search
Selling a home? Click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation

What is a seller’s market, and how does it affect you as a seller or buyer? With the Twin Cities market currently in a strong seller’s market, it’s crucial you know exactly what it means for you. There are a few signs that a given market favors sellers:

  • Diminished inventory of homes for sale in the area.
  • ...

Are We in a Buyer's or Seller's Market?

Buying a home? Click here to perform a full home search
Selling a home? Click here for a FREE Home Price Evaluation 

Today, we'll discuss the current state of the Twin Cities real estate market. It is important to have historical context when talking about current real estate trends so that you can understand exactly what is happening in the market.

For instance, we consider it to be a balanced market when we have somewhere between 21,000 and 23,000 listings on the market. Right now, we have 17,000 listings. We all remember the market crash. At the peak of the market, we had 35,000 listings. As you can see, we are significantly down from the peak, and we're below the balanced market rate. Right now, with our low inventory, sellers do have the upper hand.

Now, let's look at pricing. January 2012 was the bottom of the market with a median sales price of $140,000. At the peak in...

Mortgage Loans for Doctors

Special Loan Program for Doctors

There is a new mortgage loan program available for medical physicians (MDs) and even residents and interns!  While most traditional mortgage loan programs require 20% down payment if you want to avoid paying mortgage insurance, this new loan program for qualifying Doctors offers down payments as low as 5% with no mortgage insurance.  In addition, this program offers loan amounts up to $1,000,000 and even as high as $1,500,000 with a 10% down payment.

This is a great new program and here is where you can find more information about the Preferred Doctor Program.

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Twin Cities Market Update Week Ending February1, 2014

As we emerge from the seemingly never ending polar vortex, the real estate market is beginning to show signs of life.  The most recent market stats continue to favor home sellers with lower inventory and higher median sale prices.  Here is a breakdown of the year over year stats for a few key categories:

  • New Listings: DOWN 16.9% over last year.
  • Homes for Sale (inventory): DOWN 9.1% over last year.
  • Median Sale Price: UP 12.4% over last year.

To give a little more context to this information, there are just under 12,000 homes for sale in the Twin Cities right now and last year at this time there were just over 13,000 home listings and those following the real estate industry were noting at that time that the overall listing inventory was exceptionally low...and now it is even lower.  The lack of available homes is causing median and average sale prices to increase.  If you would like more information about the market stats in your area, please visit our Twin Cities Market Statistics page for additional information that is updated daily.

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Phasing Out Fannie and Freddie?

If you’ve been paying attention to the news coming out of Washington lately, you may have heard that Congress plans to shut down Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The plans would phase out the government-controlled mortgage guarantee giants over the course of five years.

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The push to dismantle Fannie and Freddie is a result of the housing crisis the country has experienced. Freddie and Fannie teetered under a crush of massive losses on risky mortgages before being bailed out to the tune of $187 billion, about 2/3 of which has already been paid back to the government.

The House Republican bill would practically entirely privatize the mortgage market, andd limit the Federal Housing Administration to insuring loans only for first time home buyers and lower-income borrowers. The Senate's bipartisan plan includes a new agency that has a continued, but more limited, government role in insuring a wider range of mortgage securities.  The idea behind both of these plans is to shift more mortgage financing risk from to the private sector to prevent taxpayers paying for future bailouts.

But there's a price homebuyers would likely pay for having private investors shoulder more risk to protect taxpayers.

"It will mean higher mortgage rates," said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics. "The question is how much higher."

Typical borrowers could pay about $75 per month in extra interest payments, about half a percentage point, on an average mortgage under the Senate proposal, Zandi estimated, and about $135 more under the House plan. That's on a conforming loan of about...

Home Building Activity Ticks Up in the Twin Cities

As consumer confidence and incomes rise, home building activity in the Twin Cities metro area continues to rebound. According to the Builders Association of the Twin Cities (BATC), housing construction so far this year is up 23 percent from the same period in 2012, putting builders on a track for their best year since 2007.

homes in blaine mnDuring June alone, 496 permits were issued to build 912 units. Minneapolis led the top five cities permitting 380 units. Brooklyn Park and Woodbury were in the second position with 31 units, followed by Ramsey with 29. Construction of new homes in Blaine MN, Chanhassen MN and Lakeville MN tied for fifth place with 23 units permitted each.

So far this year, builders were issued 2,379 permits to build 4,204 units, a dramatic change from this time four years ago when there were only 1,633 units.

In the south metro, Lakeville continues as the busiest homebuilding market in Dakota County and one of the metro area’s most active. The city has recorded 172 permits since the beginning of the year through the end of June, up from 107 for the same period a year ago.

In the north metro, Blaine is closing in on Coon Rapids for the title of largest city in Anoka County. It was the fastest growing...