Monthly Archives: May 2015

The Flip Side of the Coin

Flip-house

If you have kept up with the Bravo channel show Flipping Out, you will know that when the market crashed, it was tough for even the very best house flippers to make any positive traction in the industry for a long, long time. But now that the market is on an upswing, what is it like for those passionate real estate enthusiasts? The answer? Absolutely fantastic.

The basic definition of a “flipped house” is a house that is bought and sold, within a 12 month period. In 2014, the average gross profit on a flipped house was $61, 684. That number has not only increased, but has increased 4% to a huge $72,450, which is the highest it has been in almost 5 years. “The strong returns for home flippers in the first quarter demonstrates that there is still a need in this recovering real estate market for move-in ready homes rehabbed to more modern tastes, particularly given the dearth of new homes being built,” said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac.

And that statement alone is making your average house flipper very happy. With all of the demand for new housing amidst the rise in economy, not only are people ready to move, but they are having to fight to be the highest bidder. And a large majority of these properties are sold to investors looking to rent, which not only raises housing prices in general, but also the flipper’s profits.

Perhaps you’re thinking to yourself… Man, I really oughta look into getting into the house flipping game with all this action going on! And we really don’t have an argument against that notion. But remember this: The key focus to getting the best return on your investment isn’t just finding homes in the best areas. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. The best areas are those that have the most distressed inventory and demand. The strongest cities? According to RealtyTrac, Tampa, Pittsburgh, Memphis, & Chicago are at the top of the list with over 50% ROI.

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Rent-to-Own Isn’t as Easy as You May Think

_tma_Rent-to-own

Today I ran across a fact about current housing market that made me stop in my tracks. Homeownership is at its lowest in 25 years. Wait, excuse me? You must have your facts wrong, sir. We can’t seem to slow down this incredible surge in today’s market! Unfortunately, I was mistaken. And the reason behind it is not what you think.

According to the U.S. Census, the rate of homeownership fell to 63.7%, a rate that hasn’t been matched since 1990. But if housing demand is rising and pricing is rising, why isn’t homeownership? The upswing in the economy is actually having a reverse effect on the housing market. Hold on. Let me explain…

Because there is a rise in the economy, there are more millennials moving out of their parents’ homes and into a rental property. This increases the demand of rental properties. In fact, rental vacancies are at an all-time low. The more demand there is for these soon-to-be rental properties, the price for said properties begins to rise, which is what we can see from the latest market reports. Unfortunately, the rise in pricing for these rental properties doesn’t allow first-time buyers to buy. Instead, these single-family homes are bought by investors and rented.

And therein lies the homeownership hit. It really comes down to inventory and these days there isn’t enough of it. And sadly, this leaves a lot of lower and middle-class families unable to join the ranks of homeowners. The more prices rise and expectations are met and/or exceeded, the more homeownership will drop. David Blitzer of S&P Dow Jones Indices states, “Home prices continue to rise and outpace both inflation and wage gains. If a complete recovery means new highs all around, we aren’t there yet.”

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Selling Homes on the Go

_tma_virtual office

To be successful in anything you do, preparation is involved. We need to be ready for anything at any time in order to prove that we are right for the job. Before the electronic age ravaged our society, everything was dealt with at a much slower pace. Today, that’s not the case.

We all know that the real estate world is a very interactive profession. Not only are you trying to get your brand out to the public as much as possible, but your properties need to reach your client base as well. Clients are no longer willing to wait for an appointment, or for you “to get back with them.” A study done by National Assoc. of Realtors and Google revealed that 89% of new-home shoppers are using mobile search engines & apps for all of their house-hunting needs. They want answers and they want answers now.

This put a realtor in a position to be always Boy Scout ready. And since we can only do so much as a human, we are now relying more on technology. No longer are the days of lugging around tons of paperwork. Now a realtor needs to lug around a smartphone & a tablet, and consequently, extra batteries & chargers. It really is a magical time!

But with all power comes great responsibility. And with this immediacy, you are now expected to have all the answers at your fingertips. Thankfully, there are tools our there to prepare you for everything.

Cut to the chase

The majority of Gmail & Yahoo email users check their emails via a mobile device, so grabbing their attention needs to be direct and to the point within the subject line & header. Otherwise, it can easily be overlooked and/or deleted, thereby wasting all your hard work. Keep it simple. Stay in touch with your virtual clients via our csutom e-newsletter: it is the same as getting the printed version, but paperless.

Your mobile office

Apps like Dropbox & Evernote are just a couple of the endless list of apps available for you to keep all of your paperwork, files, & contact information at your fingertips. Faxes should be sent to your email, as opposed to the machine in your office. These days, your office needs to be virtual, and there is no reason why it shouldn’t be.

Showing houses the virtual way

Additionally, the virtual showing of a home is no longer a fantasy, but the way of the future. Programs like Facetime & Skype are allowing agents to show a property to a client without them being there. Take pictures & videos of your listings so your client base can view virtual tours on your website. The easier a buyer can navigate through the home-buying process, the more successful you will be. So take full advantage of the incredible advances created to streamline life as a realtor…just don’t forget to sync up.

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