Missoula real estate and homes for sale in neighboring communities. Anne Jablonski, Real Estate Specialist
Home|Thinking of Selling?|Buying?|Contact Annie & Tony
ANNE JABLONSKI   Broker/Realtor®<br />TONY JABLONSKI   Realtor®ANNE JABLONSKI Broker/Realtor®
TONY JABLONSKI Realtor®

(406) 546-5816 (Anne)
(406) 546-4079 (Tony)

Portico Real Estate
445 W Alder
Missoula, MT 59802
406.327.8787

Your Real Estate Update

Your Real Estate Update

October 2017 - Most buyers search online for a home, and then hire a realtor to help them connect the dots...
The number one reason to use a realtor when purchasing is to help understand the process.


When a homeowner decides to sell their house, they obviously want the best possible price with the least amount of hassles. And most importantly, get the home sold.  In order to accomplish all three goals, a seller should realize the importance of using a real estate professional. 

We realize that technology has changed the purchaser's behavior during the home buying process. According to the National Association of Realtors' latest Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, the percentage of buyers who used the internet in their home search increased to 94%.  However, the report also revealed that 96% of buyers that used the internet when searching for a home purchased their home through either a real estate agent/broker or from a builder or builder's agent

Only 2% purchased their home directly from a seller whom the buyer didn't know. Buyers search for a home online, but then depend on an agent to find the home they will buy (50%), to negotiate the terms of the sale (47%) & price (36%), or to help understand the process (61%). 

The plethora of information now available has resulted in an increase in the percentage of buyers that reach out to real estate professionals to "connect the dots." This is obvious as the percentage of overall buyers who used an agent to buy their home has steadily increased from 69% in 2001.

Bottom Line: If you are thinking of selling your home, don't underestimate the role that a real estate professional can play in the process.

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JULY 2017 - 
READY TO MAKE AN OFFER? 4 TIPS FOR SUCCESS

So you’ve been searching for that perfect house to call a ‘home’ and you finally found one! The price is right, and in such a competitive market you want to make sure you make a good offer so that you can guarantee your dream of making this house yours comes true!  Freddie Mac covered “4 Tips for Making an Offer” in their Executive Perspective. Here are the four tips they covered along with some additional information for your consideration:

1. Understand How Much You Can Afford - “While it's not nearly as fun as house hunting, fully understanding your finances is critical in making an offer.” This ‘tip’ or ‘step’ really should take place before you start your home search process. Getting pre-approved is one of many steps that will show home sellers that you are serious about buying, and will allow you to make your offer with the confidence of knowing that you have already been approved for a mortgage for that amount. You will also need to know if you are prepared to make any repairs that may need to be made to the house (ex: new roof, new furnace).

2. Act Fast - “Even though there are fewer investors, the inventory of homes for sale is also low and
competition for housing continues to heat up in many parts of the country.” The inventory of homes listed for sale has remained well below the 6-month supply that is needed for a ‘normal’ market. Buyer demand has continued to outpace the supply of homes for sale, causing buyers to compete with each other for their dream home. Make sure that as soon as you decide that you want to make an offer, you work with your agent to present it as soon as possible.

3. Make a Solid Offer - Freddie Mac offers this advice to help make your offer the strongest it can be: “Your strongest offer will be comparable with other sales and listings in the neighborhood. A licensed real estate agent active in the neighborhoods you are considering will be instrumental in helping you put in a solid offer based on their experience and other key considerations such as recent sales of similar homes, the condition of the house and what you can afford.” Consider ways of making your offer stand out! Many buyers write a personal letter to the seller letting them know how much they would love to be the new homeowners. Your agent will be able to help you figure out if there are any other ways your offer could stand above the rest.

4. Be Prepared to Negotiate - “It's likely that you'll get at least one counteroffer from the sellers so be prepared. The two things most likely to be negotiated are the selling price and closing date. Given that, you'll be glad you did your homework first to understand how much you can afford. Your agent will also be key in the negotiation process, giving you guidance on the counteroffer and making sure that the agreed-to contract terms are met.” If your offer is approved, Freddie Mac urges you to “always get an independent home inspection, so you know the true condition of the home. If the inspection uncovers undisclosed problems or issues, you can typically re-negotiate the terms or cancel the contract.”

Bottom Line: Whether buying your first home or your fifth, having a local real estate professional who is an expert in their market on your side is your best bet to make sure the process goes smoothly. Let’s talk about how we can make your dreams of homeownership a reality!

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JUNE 2017 - LOOK FOR AN AGENT WITH THE HEART OF A TEACHER

You've decided to sell your house. You begin to interview potential real estate agents to help you through the process. You need someone you trust enough to:

  • Set the market value on possibly the largest asset your family owns (your home)
  • Set the time schedule for the successful liquidation of that asset
  • Set the fee for the services required to liquidate that asset
An agent must be concerned first and foremost with you and your family in order to garner that degree of trust. Make sure this is the case.

Be careful if the agent you are interviewing begins the interview by:
  • Bragging about their success
  • Bragging about their company's success
An agent's success and the success of their company can be important considerations when deciding on the right real estate professional to represent you in the sale of your house. However, you first need to know that they care about what you need and what you expect from the sale. If the agent is not interested in first establishing your needs, how successful they may seem is much less important.

Look for someone with the 'heart of a teacher' who comes in prepared to explain the current real estate market to you and is patient enough to take the time to show you how it may impact the sale of your home.Not someone only interested in trying to sell you on how great they are.

Bottom Line: You have many agents from which to choose. Pick someone who truly cares.

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MAY 2017 - IS IT TIME TO MOVE UP TO THE HOME YOU ALWAYS WANTED? As interest rates increase, the house you can afford will decrease...

Now that the housing market has stabilized, more and more homeowners are considering moving up to the home they have always dreamed of. Prices are still below those of a few years ago and interest rates are still around 4%. Waiting to make the move while mortgage rates are increasing doesn't make much sense. 

As rates increase, the price of the house you can afford will decrease if you plan to stay within a certain budget for your monthly housing costs. 

With each quarter of a percent increase in interest rate, the value of the home you can afford decreases by 2.5% (in this example, $10,000). 

Experts predict that mortgage rates will increase by at least half a point by this time next year. 

BOTTOM LINE: Act now to get the most house for your hard earned money.

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March 2017 - Closing costs often surprise homebuyers. Typical closing costs range between 2-5% of your purchase price...

According to a recent survey conducted by ClosingCorp, over half of all homebuyers are surprised by the closing costs required to obtain their mortgage.

After surveying 1,000 first-time and repeat home buyers, the results revealed that 17% of home buyers were surprised that closing costs were required at all, while another 35% were stunned by how much higher the fees were than expected.

"Homebuyers reported being most surprised by mortgage insurance, followed by bank fees and points, taxes, title insurance and appraisal fees."

Bankrate.com recently gathered closing cost data from lenders in every state and Washington, D.C. to be able to share the average costs in each state. The map below was created using the closing costs on a $200,000 mortgage with a 20% down payment.

Keep in mind that if you are in the market for a home above this price range your costs could be significantly more. According to Freddie Mac,"Closing costs are typically between 2 and 5% of your purchase price."

Bottom Line - Speak with your lender and agent early and often to determine how much you'll be responsible for at closing. Finding out that you'll need to come up with thousands of dollars right before closing is not a surprise anyone should experience.

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FEBRUARY 2017 - IT'S CHEAPER TO BUY THAN TO RENT!

The results of the latest Rent vs. Buy Report from Trulia show that home ownership remains cheaper than renting with a traditional 30-year fixed rate mortgage in the 100 largest metro areas in the United States.

The updated numbers actually show that the range is an average of 17.4% less expensive in Honolulu (HI), all the way up to 53.2% less expensive in Miami & West Palm Beach (FL), and 37.7% nationwide!


Other interesting findings in the report include:

* Interest rates have remained low, and even though home prices have appreciated around the country, they haven't greatly outpaced rental appreciation.

Home prices would have to appreciate by a range of over 23% in Honolulu (HI), up to over 45% in Ventura County (CA), to reach the tipping point of renting being less expensive than buying.

* Nationally, rates would have to reach 9.1%, a 145% increase over today's average of 3.7%, for renting to be cheaper than buying. Rates haven't been that high since January of 1995, according to Freddie Mac.

Bottom Line - Buying a home makes sense socially and financially. If you are one of the many renters out there who would like to evaluate your ability to buy this year, review your current monthly expenses, talk with a mortgage lender to find out how much you qualify for, then let's get together to find your dream home!
REALTORREALTORCertified Residential Specialist®e-PRO®Equal Housing OpportunityAccredited Buyer RepresentativeAt Home With Diversity

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