Property Inspection 101

Whether you are buying a homing, or getting a home prepared for sale, we always strongly recommend that you have the property inspected either pre-sale so there are no surprises to you, the seller, and to have one before you enter in a contractual agreement to purchase the property.

One thing that scares most homebuyers away is water. Although its true that most basements are conditioned to take on some moisture, you want to thoroughly check the land surrounding the property to check for a good slope in the land along with proper drainage. Water damage can lead to more costly repairs such as re-wrapping the foundation and dreaded mold build up. You want to make sure the property was built and landscaped to encourage water to move away from the home, and if is not, that it has proper drainage to deal with the issue of water.

The next line item often worries a lot of home purchasers, and that’s the roof. The roof holds a lot of the integrity of the home as it prevents water leaks and proper run-off for weathering. The age of the roof is one thing to consider, asphalt roofs usually last about 20 years while other styles may last as long as 40 years. Although  at quick glance you can observe any patching that has been done to an asphalt roof by taking notice of the layers of asphalt that have been laid, multiple layers of patching can be a sign of the end of life for an asphalt roof.

One of the other costly projects to keep an eye out for is the electrical system. It is pretty easy to take a look at the electrical panel and notice its out of date, those cylinder old-time electrical fuses are a sure sign that the system is outdated. You may also notice if the outlets are updated, and are not the old two prong outlets. Not only can old electrical be hazardous, though depending on the size of the home, re-wiring an entire home can be pretty costly to the purchaser, as much as 15,000 or more.

There are many more components to the home inspection that we haven’t touched, although these are some of the big line items to look out for while you are searching for a home to purchase, or if you are thinking about putting your home on the market and want to determine the value of repairs.

 

We hope this information was helpful, and if you or someone you know is looking to buy or sell real estate, please keep us in mind at Barhite and Holzinger.

 

Frank Morris

Licensed Real Estate Salesperson

71 Pondfield Road

Bronxville NY 10708

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Buyers Market vs. Sellers Market

You may have heard people use the expression “buyers market” or “sellers market” when speaking about the conditions of the real estate market. So what do these expressions mean, and how do we really get a good understanding of whether or not we are currently in a buyers market or sellers market?

Real Estate is a hyperlocal business, you can look at the data from a macro standpoint looking at the economy as a whole or micro standpoint and look at housing in a School District and really fine tune the information you are getting. For this discussion, we will reference all properties sold within the town of Eastchester. Please note that the town of Eastchester also encompasses the Villages of Tuckahoe and Bronxville.

A sellers market or buyers market really is just a reflection of the supply and demand within the housing market in an given area. A high demand with a low amount of inventory for sale would constitute a sellers market, while a low demand with a high amount of inventory for sale would constitute a buyers market. Our current market conditions reflect a sellers market, aside from the bidding wars on local properties and price increases how does one actually look at data to see that this is true?

The calculation is in fact pretty simple. Realtors take the average rate of sale by looking at how many homes have sold in the area within the last 12 months, and dividing that by 12 to come to an average number of homes selling per month. We then look at the number of homes per sale on the market, and estimate how long it will take for the current supply to sell based on our average sale rate.

For example, lets say we had 120 homes sell within the last year, if we divided that by 12 we would have an average of 10 homes sold per month. If we currently had 30 homes on the market within that same area, we can divide the amount of homes by the average sale rate and come to 3. That in essence means that we have about 3 months supply on the market.

How we do know what a good amount of supply is?

Well, the figure that realtors use to judge the amount of inventory is the 6 month rule. 6 months of inventory is considered to be a completely balanced market, neither in favor of buyers or sellers, while anything below 6 months would be considered a sellers market, and the less there is, the faster the homes will sell and the higher the prices will go. Anything about 6 months of inventory would be considered a buyers market, the higher the supply, the more we will see price decreases and slower movement in housing sales.

As of December 2016, Eastchester has 4.1 months supply of inventory on the market, so as you can see, we still reside in a sellers market, so if you are thinking about listing your property for sale, the conditions are adequate, if you are thinking about purchasing, you will seemingly face competition in the current market.

 

Priced Out, A Weary Market For Buyers In Westchester

Our current market conditions make it weary for most purchasers looking in the Westchester Area, and exciting for most sellers. There are a couple of moving parts that create a sellers market within the Eastchester School District. Firstly, the law of supply and demand applies to all markets including the housing, and what we are seeing is a low supply of inventory and many people who want to buy in the neighborhood. This factor alone will drive prices up quickly depending on how high the demand is relative to supply. As of December 2016, Eastchester had 3.3 Months of supply on the market. This simply means at the current rate of sale (i.e. 30 days on market average for  a sale to take place) that all homes that are currently on the market would be sold in 3.3 months. This is a pretty strong sellers market, as Real Estate Experts state that a completely balanced market is more like 6 months of inventory. If there is above 6 months of inventory on the market than we are in a buyers market.

There is a ray of hope for buyers, and that is the historically low interest rates on conventional loans. This make affordability slightly easier, although the prices seem to be increasing quite quickly. As interest rates start to climb after the 2016 Presidential Election, we may see some initial buyers get a sense of urgency and begin to purchase, along with some buyers being knocked out of the markets for higher priced homes because of affordability unfortunately, although this may make the market more balanced overall.

The slowest sector we are seeing currently is the luxury market, which seems to have a mind of its own in the Real Estate Market and does not typically follow the traditional trends. The luxury sector follows different market conditions, typically, the luxury sector does quite well based on the conditions of other financial markets (stocks, bonds etc.). Many predict now that with a republican in office that we will see less regulation on the financial markets and perhaps strong growth there, creating a strong luxury market!

Selling your home in the first quarter

barhite-logoMany homeowners put off selling their home around the holidays for obvious reasons in Westchester County. Between the weather and added stress of the holiday season, it just doesn’t feel like a good time for many homeowners to list their property, besides, the spring market is the strongest, right?

Yes and no, there are benefits to listing your property for sale in the Winter and around the holiday season. Firstly, the first quarter is a big job transfer season for many purchasers, therefore these people are looking around the holidays for a new home. Secondly, you can be sure that the buyers that are looking at homes are motivated, people who go out and look at homes to purchase when there is snow on the ground and with the holidays around the corner are potentially more serious buyers, and there is a less a chance of those buyers that sellers dread coming around and just looking at a home for the heck of it. Lastly, the fact that most homeowners do not put their homes on the market at this time makes for less competition for you when listing your home, the less competition, the better your home shows on the market.

Regardless, most sellers wait until the second quarter to list their home for sale. The sun is shining, and it just feels more motivating to sell and show the home, we can understand this. Although, listing in the first quarter may be more beneficial to the seller. The same principles apply to the holiday season as do the first quarter, and perhaps even more so. Like the sellers, purchasers also fall into the belief that there will be more inventory after the holidays, therefore many buyers are on their toes waiting for January 2nd to come around. This is somewhat true, as inventory does start to come back on the market at that time, although many sellers will still wait until the spring or summer. We believe if you choose to list in the first quarter, you will be able to find those high urgency buyers that have waited for the holidays to end, and you will face less competition then in the spring and summer market.

We hope this makes sense and is helpful to our sellers!

Remember, if you are local to Eastchester and are looking to buy or sell Real Estate, please keep us in mind!

Best,

 

Frank

Barhite & Holzinger Real Estate

Barhite and Holzinger is an exciting company in the 2017 Real Estate market. Traditionally a boutique sales firm in Bronxville, the company has been around since 1935 and is a “full service company”. This means that the company covers the sale, management, and insurance brokerage as it pertains to their properties.

The company currently manages approximately 50 buildings around the county, which is an added benefit to sellers in buyers in the area, as this allows the company to exposes listings to a huge database of local vendors and property owners.

The sales firm has is currently remodeling their storefront in on Pondfield road, and has just added a strong marketing campaign for their sellers to utilize. We currently market towards the ever growing digital consumers for our sellers on Zillow, Trulia, Hotpads, and using Social Media such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Maximizing the exposure allows us to bring forth the most buyers for our sellers.

Why choose use? We deliver a personalized experience here in our boutique firm, and we know from experience that we no one works harder for our sellers and buyers then us to help them achieve their goals.

The average agent in Westchester County yields their sellers 95.47% of original asking price for their single family home in Westchester, I average listed and sold sale price to list price average is 99.16% of the original listing price! Therefore on average, I have yielded sellers  about 3.5% more for their homes.

While most agents just simply post your listing on the MLS, we take a more pro-active approach by utilizing our contact database in search of a buyer for your home by using our email lists, mailing lists, door knocking and telling your neighbors about the listing, and telemarketing to the neighborhood, all potential buyers will know your home is for sale!

If your are thinking about buying or selling Real Estate, please consider us for the job!

 

 

Fourth Quarter Single Family Home Data, Eastchester New York

As the year comes to an end we look to review the sales data for our single family homeowners in the town of Eastchester.

 

The amount of inventory on the market is down from December 2015, at that time there was 4 and half months of supply on the market in Eastchester. The way this number is calculated is pretty simple, the average days on market for homes is taken, along with the number of homes currently on the market, then it is determined that all the homes on the market would sell in approximately 4.5 months based on the current rate of sale, therefore giving us the 4.5 months supply. 2016 Ended with 4.3 months supply of inventory in the single family home market, which means the market is still leaning in favor of sellers at this time. A completely balanced market is 6 months supply, anything above 6 months of supply on the market would be favorable market conditions for buyers.

At the close of 2015 the average sales price was about 710,000 in the town, December closed out with an average sales price of 702,500, marking a slight decrease in the average. We may attribute this to a seemingly low amount of data to work with, this slight decrease does not necessarily mean that value are dropping, because while the supply of homes on the market remains low, we can assume that values will remain steady for sellers in the market and that prices will continue to increase.

In December 2015 there were 64 New listings on the market in Eastchester, and this December marked 38 New listings to come to the market, many may attribute this decline to shaky market conditions as the interest rates climb knocking some buyers out of the market, and the Presidential election which has had many people on edge.

 

The average days on market last year this time was 87 days, to no surprise we have seen a decrease in this number to 77 days on market, this is not surprising due to the changes we have seen in the inventory on the market as buyers frantically search for the right home, and are often faced with bidding wars against other purchasers.

To summarize, if you are a seller in todays market in Westchester County, your position is favorable, although if you wish to purchase again in Westchester, you may face some of the same issues those who wish to buy your home face, low inventory, bidding wars, and not much room to negotiate.

 

Happy New Year from Barhite and Holzinger!

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