Category Archives for "Charlotte Market Reports & Trends"

Charlotte NC Real Estate Market Reports and Trends

4 Reasons to Invest in Housing in Charlotte: Why 2014 will be a Great Year

key, 2014, house key, invest in Charlotte NC real estate, Charlotte NC homes for sale, Charlotte NC foreclosures, Charlotte NC short sales, Nancy Braun, Showcase Realty

 

We’ve all seen the news about big investors making their way through Charlotte buying up hundreds of properties. And if you’re like me, you were left wondering, “How can I get in on the action?”

Now that the major investment companies have all but left Charlotte, some people said it was a sign that the time to buy is behind us.

 

 

Well they’re wrong!

Forbes ranked the top 20 U.S. Cities that were the best places to invest in housing in 2014; Ranking the Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia area No. 3!

Why?

Without these big investment companies, there is more opportunity for the rest of us to still get a great price on a new home.

The most important factor now is TIME!

As with any good deal, you need to act quickly while the prices and rates are still low to get the most bang for your buck, as they say.

This ranking reviewed the top 100 metropolitan areas using US census data. These 100 cities were then ranked on four factors: Population, home prices, home value and the local job economy.

Charlotte achieved the third spot because it has high population and job growth, and relatively low home prices that are most importantly, undervalued.

All together it makes buying a home in Charlotte a relatively low-risk investment.

The key to this ranking is the price that homes would have been without the recession and other external factors.

 

\As long as homes prices are below this price, then the home is undervalued, and typically a good investment.

In Charlotte, homes are 15% undervalued. That’s an average savings of over $36,000!

What this really means:

Buyers: Charlotte is one of the best places to invest in the entire country. This is because of its potential for growth and improvement, along with its low priced and undervalued homes.

Whether you are buying a home for yourself or looking for an investment property, the key is to buy now while the prices and mortgage rates are still low.

As the rates and prices gradually increase, this is fewer savings in your pocket.

If you are considering investing in Charlotte this year, please leave a comment in the section below. We welcome your thoughts on why you think it’s a great deal. And if you don’t, tell us why as well.

If you are ready to get to make the next move, click here for some of best deals hitting the market now!

Housing Market Makes a Comeback In 2013

charlotte nc real estate, charlotte nc homes for sale, showcase realty, nancy braun, charlotte nc short sale agents, charlotte nc foreclosuresWhat a difference a year makes.

Not just here in the Charlotte NC real estate market but across the country.

There are many reasons to be thankful in 2013, one of those reasons are that homes across America have gained back $2.8 trillion over the last two years ($1.9 Trillion this year alone), gaining back 44 percent of the total value that was lost during the recession.

Building on positive momentum that started in 2012 when the housing market bottomed out, 2013, with a combination of low mortgage rates, and an improving economy saw more demand and rising prices.

What does this mean for 2014?

This means that we’re finally off the bottom and headed for continued growth, however, at a slower, much more sustainable rate.

Buyers: with mortgage rates expected to rise, now is the time to start making serious moves towards purchasing a home.

Sellers: The value of your home has increased, demand is back and increasing.  This is a great combination for maximizing your homes potential, so why wait!

When it comes to your home and where you live, what are you thankful for, leave us a comment and let us know.

Also, if your looking for a great opportunity to own a home, one of our suggestions is to look into HUD homes. For a FREE guide that can help you immediately, download our HUD Homebuyers Toolkit

Download Now!

If you have any questions regarding buying or selling, for example, what is my home worth?

Give us a call at 704.997.3794 or email us at officeadmin@showcaserealty.net

Happy Holidays!

Showcase Realty

www.showcaserealty.net 

Radio Show Recap: Renting Vs. Buying: Which Is Better For You?

Radio, Show, Rent or Buy, Charlotte NC real estate, Charlotte NC investors, Charlotte NC foreclosures, Charlotte NC homes for sale, Charlotte NC short sales, Showcase Realty, Charlotte NC Short Sale Agents

Renting, Buying, Crossroads, Charlotte NC real estate, Charlotte NC investors, Charlotte NC foreclosures, Charlotte NC homes for sale, Charlotte NC short sales, Showcase Realty, Charlotte NC Short Sale AgentsDid you miss our radio show that aired live last Sunday, November 24, 2013 at 10:30 AM? No worries, if you missed it or want to listen again you can watch the podcast available now on ITunes and coming soon to www.charlottemarketradio.com.

 

Our last episode discussed one common dilemma most homeowners face and this is renting versus buying, which is better? According to Mecktimes and Trulia’s statistics, buying a house is better than renting one; specifically if you live within Charlotte, North Carolina. During the summer of 2013, buying a home was actually cheaper by 44 percent than renting. The difference between both narrowed since summer of 2012, where it was 54 percent cheaper to buy than to rent.

 

Furthermore, by Trulia’s estimate, the mortgage rate tipping point, when renting becomes cheaper than buying, is at 13.3 percent for Charlotte. And according to Bankrate.com, the current mortgage rates are 4.12 to 4.62.

 

The benefits of owning a home were also presented, here are a few:

  • When paying money towards the principal on your loan each month, you increase the percentage of your home that you own.
  • Mortgage payments remain the same with a fixed rate loan. Rent costs, however, inevitably go up.
  • You gain from the appreciation on your home. The whole house appreciates, not just your down payment.

 

On the other hand, the downside of renting was also discussed.

  • In renting, you do not accumulate equity. You are essentially giving away your money each month. Why are you buying your landlords home?
  • The landlord benefits from the appreciation values, not the tenant.
  • The landlord benefits from your work and improvements on a house or apartment that you rent.

 

 

For first time homebuyers, there are special lending programs you can rely on like HUD homes. If you live in Charlotte, be sure to get a certificate first from attending an 8-hour Home Buyer workshop and get up to $7,500 which you can use as down payment and closing costs.

 

For those who have been hurt by the economic downturn by a short sale or foreclosure; good news because you can now purchase a house in much less time because of a recent change in the rules. FHA has loosened their guidelines allowing borrowers to get a home loan in as little as 12 months after a foreclosure or short sale.

 

Last but not the least, the 3 most common myths of buying versus renting were also discussed, which are as follows:

 

Myth #1 A bigger down payment is always better

 

You don’t need to put 20% as down payment..

 

Myth # 2 You get more for your money in the suburbs

 

Savings from lower-cost housing often are wiped out by unexpectedly high transportation costs.

 

Myth #3: Renters escape property taxes

 

Renters don’t pay property taxes directly; any business minded landlord factors in all of their carrying costs into their rental rates so it’s like they’re paying the taxes of the landlord.

 

For more information and elaboration on the topics discussed, listen to our podcast.

On the next episode of our radio show, we will discuss how to get your home ready for the market. If you have any questions or clarifications, please don’t hesitate to call us at 704-440-0007. We’re always happy to answer your queries.

Importance of Social Media for Real Estate Agents

Couple, Smiling, Realtor, Real Estate, Happy Family, Agent, House, Showcase, Realty, Showcase Realty, Paint, Blue,Charlotte NC fall events, Charlotte NC homes for sale, Charlotte NC real estate, Showcase realty, Nancy BraunRegardless of the type of business you have today, social media has become a necessity for most businesses to be successful including real estate. Social media, such as, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are some of the most excellent tools you can use for marketing. But there are actually other channels you can use such as Pinterest, Google+, Instagram and more. But as a real estate agent, why should you really use social media? Here are some answers to your questions.

 

  1. It helps you attract buyers and sellers. Real estate agents can use social media to get more sellers and buyers as more people get to see your business advertisements. Although some real estate agents have excellent skills in offline marketing, using social media can help increase your prospective clients: making it easier for you.

Remember that approximately one billion people across the world are using at least one social media site and these are all your potential clients, you simply just need to meet them there and get their attention.

  1. Social media becomes an easy method of communicating with your potential clients. Now that most individuals are members of atleast one social media site, it’s become a great venue for you to enhance your property listings through posting high quality photos and comments. It’s also a great real-time way to communicate with your potential clients especially when they have queries.

 

  1. 3.      It helps you build a credible reputation. This is made possible through creating your own blog where you share valued information like advices, tips and other details that may attract or help your prospective clients. Just remember to balance the information you provide which means providing useful information while you promote your brand.

 

  1. 4.      Social media helps enhance your business. Once your begin using the online world and start conversations with your target audience regarding your listings, you’ll get valuable feedback and insights. In this way, you’ll know what your business lacks and you’ll be able to fix to gain more clients.

 

  1. 5.      Makes it easier for you to get in touch with other professionals in your industry. Real estate agents not only gain clients through social media but it also gives way to potential career opportunities. Furthermore, it’s a way for real estate agents to learn from each other, especially from the more seasoned agents.

 

  1. 6.      Quicker way to get referrals. Social media networks have made it easier for people to refer your business to their friends and families, who are your potential clients too.

Investor and Foreclosure Activity in the Charlotte NC Real Estate Market

housing bubble, Charlotte NC real estate, Charlotte NC investors, Charlotte NC foreclosures, Charlotte NC homes for sale, Charlotte NC short sales, Showcase Realty, Charlotte NC Short Sale Agents

housing bubble, Charlotte NC real estate, Charlotte NC investors, Charlotte NC foreclosures, Charlotte NC homes for sale, Charlotte NC short sales, Showcase Realty, Charlotte NC Short Sale AgentsNancy Braun was quoted three times by The Mecklenburg Times in the last several weeks. The first one, “South End by Southwest” was covered in a previous blog post. The two most recent articles

The article in September 27th issue of The Mecklenburg Times covers the investor activity in Charlotte, titled “Reits: Industry Insiders are Wondering Where the Phenomenon Will Lead.”  During May, June and July, one in every five homes were sold to investors. One the surface this seems like a good thing. Large companies purchase distressed properties, fix them up and then rent them out. This demand lowers the supply and increasing competition.

 

But the clarity dissipates and the fog of uncertainty begins to cloud the issues when real estate professionals start to consider what that means for the market, now and in the long term.

Pretty much everyone agrees that the real estate investment trusts and other institutional investment firms that since the recession have bought thousands of homes in the Charlotte market – nearly 2,000 in May, June and July – have “jump-started the Charlotte real estate market,” in the words of Nancy Braun, owner and broker-in-charge of  Showcase Realty.

They agree that many of the homes were distressed, financially and structurally, and that Wall Street has helped clean up some of the mess left by Wall Street in the mortgage-bundling fiasco.

And they agree that institutional investors are helping the market meet a demand for rental homes, as more former homeowners and more likely first-time buyers are either forced or are choosing to lead more liquid lifestyles.

 

Read the Full Article Here – The Mecklenburg Times 9.27.13

 

The article published in the September 17th edition of The Mecklenburg Times covered foreclosure activity which is closely tied to influx of investors. The article, titled “Foreclosure Activity Down from Last Year”  discussed the amount of foreclosures on the market and it’s general downward trend over the passed year. However August presented interesting numbers — an increase in foreclosures. Nancy gave her thoughts on one possible explanation for this increase.

 

One possible explanation is that because housing prices are climbing, inventory is shrinking, and institutional investors are buying houses at a rate never seen before, lenders have decided to initiate the foreclosure process. Or the lenders may have just begun the process after unsuccessfully working with homeowners on loan modifications, which have been stressed by President Barack Obama’s administration.

Braun said she recently worked on a short sale in which the homeowner hadn’t made a payment in 30 months before being notified that the lender was starting the foreclosure process.

“Maybe it makes sense to pull the trigger and foreclose on the properties they’ve been sitting on,” she said. “I don’t think anyone truly has a handle on what the shadow inventory is, but there is a shadow inventory.”

Shadow inventory includes homes that may be in default or in the foreclosure process that have not been placed on the market.

 

Read the full article here — The Mecklenburg Times 9.17. 13

 

Investor presence and bank activities on foreclosures definitely have effected the market. Short term it has seemed to jumpstart the market and result in stronger prices and quicker sales. While no one can know what the future holds or how the market will react in the long term, Nancy will continue to share her insights as things unfold.

Home prices in Charlotte are STILL dropping!

According to Standard & Poor’s research,  home prices are continuing to drop from the levels they saw throughout 2010, even after the temporary increase in home prices during the month of July. In the study’s 20-city composite, which includes Charlotte, NC, prices rose 0.9% from June to July, but were down 4.1% when compared to July of 2010.

“All that extra buying activity…right before the tax credit deadline drove up home prices, so it makes sense that we’re still seeing a year-over-year decline,” said Ward, CEO of a real estate brokerage web site.

CLICK HERE to read  more about the falling of prices in Charlotte and several other cities throughout the U.S.

Showcase Goes Behind the Scenes of Buying a HUD Home

Below is Showcase Realty’s BRAND NEW HUD video, which not only explains the purpose behind buying and selling HUD homes, but it also has personal interviews with those who have experienced first-hand the many benefits of purchasing a HUD property. HUD Homes are not just “distressed” homes that are sold for less, they are a way to revitalize neighborhoods and sell to those who otherwise couldn’t buy a home!

Showcase Realty from Burke Communications on Vimeo.

To learn more about HUD homes, or get expert assistance from a member of our team, go to Showcase’s HUD Homes page!

Charlotte Home Prices Continue to Fall

Home prices have continuously fallen in 18 of 20 US States over the past year. This statistic was found by a report made by Standard & Poor’s Case-Schiller Home Price Index released early this month.

The Mecklenburg Times published an article on this data last week. According to that article, home prices in the Charlotte meto area fell 4.8 percent in January from the same month a year ago and the area’s home prices were down 1.1 percent from December to January.

“Keeping with the trends set in late 2010, January brings us weakening home prices with no real hope in sight for the near future,” David Blitzer, chairman of S&P’s index committee, said of the U.S. housing market.

“These data confirm what we have seen with recent housing starts and sales reports,” he said. “The housing market recession is not yet over, and none of the statistics are indicating any form of sustained recovery. At most, we have seen all statistics bounce along their troughs. At worst, the feared double-dip recession may be materializing.”

Full article

For more information on affordable, available homes visit ShowcaseRealty.net

Credit Suisse Reports December Traffic: “Charlotte Buyers Lack Urgency”

According to a report released by Credit Suisse on January 6, 2011 demand in the Charlotte home market remains weak as buyers fear further price declines. Charlotte, NC is the 13th largest market in the country. The following are quotes directly from the December 2010 report for the Charlotte, NC real estate market:

“Buyer traffic remained at weak levels well below agents’ expectations in December, as our traffic index fell slightly to 20 from 21 in December (readings below 50 point to traffic levels below agents expectations). Agents said that there was little change to speak of in December relative to November, as buyers remain fearful and are willing to wait on the sidelines until more concrete signs of a bottom emerge. Another agent also said that the recent spike in mortgage rates has started to hurt.

Prices continue to fall. Home prices fell further in December, as our home price index
improved to 17 from 7 in November, but remained far below a neutral reading of 50 (any
reading below 50 indicates lower home prices over the past 30 days). Prices continue to
come under pressure as a result of the weak demand and elevated inventory levels,
especially as distressed properties continue to come back to market. Inventory appeared
stable in December, as our home listings index improved to 46 from 43 in November,
essentially in-line with a neutral level of 50. However, the length of time needed to sell a
home increased further, reflecting the weakness in demand, as our time to sell index came
in at 18 in December (from 11 in November), with readings below 50 indicating a longer
time needed to sell a home over the past month. The longer time to sell is typically a
negative leading indicator for home prices.”

Click here to see corresponding graphs.

If you or someone you know are looking for a home in the Charlotte Metro and surrounding areas, click here.

For more information on Credit Suisse, click here.

Working with Charlotte Realtors

If you are looking at the purchase of a home in the Charlotte, NC area, it is advisable to get some expert help to secure a good deal. You wouldn’t go to a plumber for legal representation, so why not work with local expert Charlotte realtors to help you find the home of your dreams.

The general real estate market in Charlotte has seen a lot of fluctuation over the last year. Like many southeastern areas of the United States, property values have declined significantly. This has left many people “upside down” in their loans. That is why we have seen so many REO foreclosures on the market. In addition, there is a whole new issue about to hit the real estate market this year. It’s called balloon payments coming due, as well as ARM’s getting ready to change.

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