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Real Estate in a Pandemic

 

Real Estate in a Pandemic

Recent months have shown us that lives can be endangered and upended in a very short amount of time. The COVID-19 pandemic which appeared to many of us as a far off news story, soon entered our lives in a very real and personal way.

Our priority at The Condo Guy Team right now is to be responsible citizens and Stay Home as directed by Governor Phil Scott. We're checking in on our current and past clients to see if they're well and have everything they need during this challenging time. The health of our community and our front line health care workers is paramount right now. I'm inspired everyday by the sacrifices I see people make and the professionalism exhibited by our local institutions. 

While our thoughts are on doing the right thing, many people are still curious about the state of the Vermont Real Estate Market and the Vermont Condo Market. Real Estate Professionals have been deemed non-essential and therefore, we're all working from home. However, we are still staying in touch with clients, conducting virtual showings through video or remote conferencing and some buyers are willing to enter into Purchase & Sale Contracts without setting foot into a home. We're anticipating Governor Scott's Stay Home order will be extended past April 15th, but we're currently scheduling appointments later into the spring and summer. 

Based on low mortgage interest rates and the fact we entered this crisis with very limited inventory, we're anticipating that there will be pent-up demand when the real estate market opens up a little bit. I'm still providing free video home valuations and seller consultations so that people are ready to go when the time is right. Preparing now will set us up for success in the future. 

No one can predict what the future will bring, but there are many market indicators that housing will be one of the beacons leading us through any economic downturn. Please view the attached slide presentation with info from industry experts. If you'd like to discuss current and future market conditions, I'd love to set-up a Facetime, Zoom call, Microsoft Team meeting, Google Hangout or just a good old fashioned phone call.

 

Remember to stay safe, stay healthy and stay home. We'll meet again soon!    

 

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    Mortgage Rates Drop to 3 Year Lows

    Mortgage Rates Drop to 3 Year Lows. Inventory Remains Low. March is in Like a Lion!

     

    Recent global events have helped push already competitive mortgage rate to even lower levels. Mortgage rates which are generally influenced by long-term bond rates started to edge downward in advance of the Federal Reserve’s announcement on Tuesday to lower the Federal Funds Rate. Global markets have recently responded to news regarding the spread of Corona Virus and the uncertainty led to the Fed’s surprise rate cut.

     

    Low mortgage rates typically yield more active buyers with higher spending power. Additional buyers in the pool may apply greater pressure to the already low existing stock of housing. This could lead to continued growth in sale prices and lowered inventory. If you’re a seller this could lead to higher prices and better terms https://www.condoguy.com/home-worth/. If you’re considering buying, this means that you could be pre-approved for a higher purchase price than just one week ago https://www.condoguy.com/contact-us/. If you’re a homeowner and not considering moving, you may want to look at refinancing based on these historic low rates.

     

    At the Condo Guy Team, we love talking real estate! If you’re considering selling, buying or refinancing we’d be happy to discuss over coffee and provide a free home valuation, seller or buyer consultation, or put you in touch with fantastic local lenders. Please contact us at anytime.

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      Low Interest Rates + Low Inventory = A Super Strong Seller's Market!

      Low Interest Rates + Low Inventory = A Super Strong Seller’s Market!

       

      As we settle into 2020, recent real estate trends have continued. Very low interest rates have kept buyers in the hunt. As of December, inventory of Townhouses and Condos for Sale was down a whopping 27%!!! At the end of 2019 there was a 1.9 month supply of homes for sale, far below the 6 month supply threshold which is considered a balanced market (NVBR December 2019 Chittenden County Statistics). http://www.nvbr.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/market-statistics/dec-2019/Chittenden-County.pdf.

       

      With a limited construction pipeline of new homes and low interest rates predicted by many for the foreseeable future, it appears likely that we’ll remain in a market of constricted supply. In short; A very strong Seller’s Market! This is particularly advantageous for the owners of existing Chittenden County, VT Homes.

       

      If you’re curious about how current market conditions have impacted the value of your home, I’m offering a Free Market Valuation to homeowners to kick off 2020! Contact me today if you’d like to schedule an appointment! Click on the link above or email me at www.condoguy.com

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        If You List it They Will Come*: 5 Reasons Why Now is a Great Time to Sell Your Home

        If You List it They Will Come*: 5 Reasons Why Now is a Great Time to Sell Your Home

        (*With the Correct Pricing, Presentation and Marketing)

         

        Spring is upon us and the real estate market is starting to heat up, yet again! Although we typically expect to see increased activity in home sales this time of year, a number of factors have come into play that make Right Now a terrific time to Sell Your Home.

         

        1. Low Mortgage Rates: Late last month mortgages hit a 14 month low hovering around 4.06%. On March 28th fortune.com reported that “Mortgage rates fell more in the past week than they have in any one week period in more than a decade” (http://fortune.com/2019/03/28/mortgage-rates-tumble/). Lower mortgage rates mean more purchasing power for homebuyers and that brings more people into the market. It’s important to note that mortgage rates constantly fluctuate, but we’ve been experiencing historic lows for some time which has helped keep demand high.
        2. Lack of Inventory: The inventory of existing homes for sale remains very low. Most new construction is focused on price points above $350,000 which means that very little inventory is being added to the red hot $150,000-$350,000 which means buyers are competing for a limited stock of existing homes.
        3. Buyers are Out in Force: A recent open house I held in Burlington at a home that had been advertised for less than 24 hours resulted in 45 attendees! This set a new bar for my team. I’m going to need to bring more snacks next time! This is just one example and every home is different, but activity like this can be a useful barometer for market conditions.
        4. Multiple Offers: The above open house resulted in a total of 6 offers! I know of another home in my neighborhood that just went on the market and received 14 offers! Again, these results can’t be translated to every sale, but serve as examples of market activity.
        5. It’s Spring Time!: I’ve been watching the ice in Burlington Bay slowly melt and have observed a few flowers braving things above the ground. The spring selling season is perennially a busier time of year for the Real Estate market. People are contemplating moves between school years and it’s easier to understand a home and property when they aren’t buried in snow and ice. More light in the evenings makes it easier to show homes and it’s just easier to get around.

         

        The above reasons provide a snapshot of current favorable conditions for home sellers. If you’re curious what your home might sell for in today’s market contact me anytime for a free home valuation and seller consultation. I’d welcome the opportunity to provide you with useful market information and pricing suggestions with no obligations. Hope to see you out and about this spring!

         

        -David Parsons    

         

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          Should I stay or let it go?

          Should You Sell Your Home Or Rent It Out?

          Sometimes, you decide exactly when you’d like to move. Other times, life swoops in and decides for you. Your company might transfer you, a family emergency might require relocation, or you might finally find the love of your life—three states over. Should you sell your house or hang on to it as a rental property? Here are 5 important considerations.

          1. Are you gone for good?

          Or do you need an exit strategy? If there’s a good chance you’ll return to your current home in a year or two, the money and time you spend selling your home and then buying a new one might make renting it out a smarter option.

          2. How’s the rental market?

          Look at online rental sites to see what properties in your neighborhood and in similar condition to yours are renting for. Are there a lot of listings? Think about what you might charge and what you might have to do to bring your property up to the market standard. You can then get an idea whether your potential rental income will cover your expenses.

          3. Where’s the neighborhood heading?

          A lot of factors feed into property values, from national trends to long-term construction plans. An agent can help you understand your property’s potential for appreciation and whether or not it might pay to hang onto it.

          4. How much is the hassle of being a landlord worth?

          Unless you pay for a property management company (about 10 percent of the rental income), dealing with issues, emergencies and uncooperative renters (sometimes all at once, often in the middle of the night) can be trying. Ask yourself if it’s worth the stress.

          5. What are the tax implications?

          Each situation is unique, so before you decide to rent out your home consider talking with a tax professional. They can help you figure out how much you can expect to pay in taxes on the rental income.

          Source: remax.com

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            Happy Thanksgiving!

            Thanksgiving provides us with an opportunity to give pause and collectively express gratitude for the things that matter in our lives. I'd like to take this opportunity to list a few things that I'm thankful for this year.

            1. My family and their health

            2. My friends or chosen family and their well-being

            3. My clients and customers whom I have the privilege of serving and allow me to make a living

            4. My colleagues and peers throughout the real estate industry that make my work possible

            5. The beautiful State of Vermont which offers unparalleled beauty and a supportive community

            6. My home which provides a place of solace and joy for my family throughout the year

            7. My neighbors who make my home a welcoming place

            8. The good fortune to have access to healthy and plentiful food with which we celebrate Holidays

            9. The ability to move freely and experience nature

            10. All of those that provide selfless service both as volunteers and professionals to protect us all 24 hours a day 365 days a year

            For the above reasons and so many more, I am sincerely Thankful. I wish you and your loved ones a very Happy Thanksgiving

            -David Parsons

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              New Office Open House and Mixer

              Please join Burlingtons newest real estate office, RE/MAX North Professionals Downtown, home of Matt Hurlburt Group and David Parsons Condo Guy and Todays Homes of Vermont.� We will have local beer and drinks poured by the fabulous Arts Riot Crew, light snacks and spectacular Burlington views.

              Hosted by: Matt Hurlburt and David Parsons

              Where: 40 Main Street, 5th Floor, Suite 550, Burlington, Vermont

              What: Open House and Mixer

              When: October 11th, 2018, 5pm-7pm

              Parking available: Walk over or ride your bike, but we have a parking garage and metered parking along the streets.

              For further information, visit our Facebook page or contact:

              Sarah Ku, sarah@condoguy.com

              About Matt Hurlburt Group: A small family group that has specialized in client services for over 21 years. The Matt Hurlburt Group provides time tested, experienced, and knowledgeable services, with the clients input, each step of the way. Past-represented properties vary from new construction projects, investment properties, single-family homes and condominiums. The Matt Hurlburt Group is committed to providing a high quality of service and clear communication.

              http://www.matthurlburtgroup.com

              About Condo Guy: With over 2200 condos sold since 1999, The Condo Guy Team has been providing solid advice to buyers and sellers of Vermont condos real estate for nearly 30 years. The Condo Guy knows the Vermont condo market and has the systems and experience to exceed expectations and deliver peace of mind in what is often an overwhelming life event.

              http://www.condoguy.com

              About RE/MAX North Professionals: Vermonts #1 RE/MAX Office is focused on providing the best results and service in the industry! Agents at RE/MAX North Professionals listen carefully to understand your real estate goals and work hard to create solutions that make sense. These agents know Northwestern Vermont from top to bottom, inside and out, the greater Burlington Vermont area, from Middlebury to Swanton, and Lake Champlain to the Green Mountains.

              The new Burlington location has allowed to further expand the company footprint. Four office locations include the Colchester, Cambridge, Middlebury and Burlington offices with a total of 36 dedicated and dependable real estate agents.

              http://www.homesvermont.com

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                Back to School!

                 

                Back to School,  Time to Sell Your Home!

                It’s that time of year again!  The new school supplies, the fresh haircuts, the sweet back to school sales, the early chaotic mornings, the packed lunches, the yellow buses, the thousands of Instagram back-to-school photos and of course the very excited parents practically jumping for joy… Hello teachers! Goodbye summer! We can't help but feel motivated to get the school year off to a great start!

                Maybe you’re one of those parents. The feeling of ‘it’s time to get stuff done’ is lingering in the air. Perhaps you’re a brand new empty nester and you’re realizing that you might need to downsize.  Either way, it’s definitely a time of renewed energy inviting change and new opportunities.  It could also prove to be a great time to put your property on the market.

                Back to school?  A good time to sell?  That might sound pretty far off from what you’re used to hearing.  You’ve been told time and again that spring and summer are the best months to put your home on the market.  While yes, they are indeed busy and competitive seasons for residential real estate, you tend to see some very serious buyers in the fall.  Factor that in with less competition and you can likely expect to see a quick and easy sale.  Many home buyers shopping in the fall have a deadline to work with, especially in a state where the winter weather may prove to be challenging for a move. In this scenario, a home shopper will be less likely to haggle if the property meets their needs.  Fall’s lack of inventory is a dream for the motivated seller.  If buyers have fewer homes to consider, yours will simply stand out more.

                The Weather

                Did you know that the cooler weather and smell of pumpkin spiced lattes can help too?  If you're trying to sell your home, buyers need to have an easy time imaging themselves (and their own holiday traditions) in your home. Therefore, the holidays can prove to be a perfect time to have your home on the market.  If you put yourself in the home buyers’ shoes, you can imagine the instant connection to a home that provides classic festive décor, inviting aromas and a general feeling of coziness.

                We are here to help!

                When it comes down to deciding when to put your home on the market, remember every home transaction is different and every market has its own quirks.  Home buying and selling is personal and the best decision you’ll make will be the one that fits your specific situation. Every season has a benefit and fall should not be overlooked. We’d be happy to help guide you through the pros and cons of each selling season and provide you with our experiences to lead you toward an informed decision when listing your home.

                Don't hesitate, reach out today!

                Quote: "The great aim of education is not knowledge but action." -Herbert Spencer

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                  The Condo Guy Team has Moved to Downtown Burlington!

                  Come Visit Us at Our New 40 Main Street Location!

                  I'm incredibly excited to announce that The Condo Guy Team has relocated to a new Office Space in Downtown Burlington! We made the move in order to be able to best serve our clients, customers and their interests. From our new office at 40 Main Street, located in the vibrant heart of Burlington, we can almost reach out and touch many of our past and current clients at Burlington VT's Condominium Communities like, College & Battery Condos, Westlake Condos, Hinds Lofts Condos, Stratos Condos and the Vermont House Condos. We're thrilled to be in a neighborhood where you can run into Past and Present clients while taking a walk to grab lunch or to get a cup of coffee.

                  Our team is still vitally integrated with RE/MAX North Professionals and the new Burlington location has allowed us to further expand our footprint to include our Colchester, Cambridge, Middlebury and now Burlington offices. We're honored to be able to serve so many communities in Northwestern and Central Vermont. 

                  Have a Free Cup of Coffee on Us!

                  I'd love the opportunity to show the community our new office and remind everyone of our total commitment to helping Buyers and Sellers of Vermont Condos. Email me at condoguy@condoguy.com or call or txt me at 802-922-8768 and we can set up a time to have a coffee in Burlington, discuss the real estate market and provide a free consultation, or just catch up to say hi.

                  Free Valuation & Consultation!

                  As the busy real estate season is upon us, I want to remind everyone that we're always available to provide a free valuation of your existing home with no obligation or provide you with a free consultation on selling or buying in today's market. We're passionate about all things real estate and would love to share The Condo Guy Team's 20 years of experience with you. 

                  Quote: "Sometimes you need a Change of Scenery"  

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                    Burlington Rental Units on The Rise - Are New Burlington Condos on The Horizon?

                    New Burlington Area Rentals Coming on The Market

                    You've probably seen the construction sites and cranes while driving around Greater Burlington. A great deal of residential construction has been has occurred recently and a great deal more is near completion or planned for the future. Some notable examples are Liberty House located in former Burlington College/Burlington Diocese property, Bartlett Brook Apartments on Shelburne Road in South Burlington an the much discussed Burlington Town Square Development City Place

                    A recent Seven Days article highlighting the construction of New Champlain College housing on St. Paul Street on the site of former Eagle's Club. The article examines the impact of recent and planned apartment construction stating that "By December, though, the Chittenden County vacancy rate had risen to almost 3 percent, according to South Burlington real estate firm Allen, Brooks & Minor. That's nearly double the average rates of the previous couple of decades. At least 362 rental units were constructed last year in the county, and another 448 are due this year, including those at 194 St. Paul. In the longer term, with big projects such as Cambrian Rise on North Avenue and City Place on Church Street approved for construction, more than 2,000 units are in the pipeline."

                    The impact of increased supply will likely lead to the stabilizing or lowering of rental rates and there's some anecdotal evidence that this is taking place. This new availability is welcome news to those competing to find rental housing in the tight Chittenden County rental market.

                    How Do New Rental Units Impact The Burlington Condo Market?

                    What impact will new rental units have on the equally tight Burlington, VT Condo Market? Well it's impossible to predict the future, but if developers have difficulty achieving acceptable occupancy rates or are unable to charge the necessary rents to make such projects feasible, they may find it attractive to build more condominum units or convert already approved projects from rentals to condos. Such a shift would add much needed housing stock, particularly for the first time homebuyer segment and those seeking amenities and convenience. 

                    It's widely agreed upon conventional wisdom that The Burlington Real Estate market needs more housing of all types. The increasing number of rental units we're seeing now will hopefully open up some of the bottle necks that we're seeing in both condo sales markets and rental markets. Whatever transpires, The Condo Guy Team will be on the front lines helping Vermont condo sellers and buyers. Stay tuned!

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