I hope you had a good weekend. If you didn’t have a chance to hear the President’s speech last night, make sure to go watch it. In the wake of such an enormous tragedy, he put the whole thing in the right perspective....
On today's call: Markets, Housing, Home Sellings Mistakes, Interest Rates
The markets are on the mend after new developments over the fiscal cliff negotiations encouraged investors. The President and John Boehner, the Speaker of the House are meeting today to continue talks. While most investors will probably stay cautious until an actual decision is made, any solution (or perceived solution) will send the Dow into more positive territory, and send mortgage rates higher most likely. Friday’s consumer sentiment index, by Reuters, will also sway the markets, as investors will monitor this index very closely. Economically speaking, I can’t see how this index will bring great news, can you?
In housing, RealtyTrac reported that the number of homes in the Chicago metro area hit with foreclosure filings fell almost 9.5% last month (from the month prior, but increased almost 3% from this time last year. It is the 11th straight year-over-year increase. Sounds like conflicting information to me. Well, the biggest problem is that lenders are finally seizing properties that started the process 1-2 years ago, or even longer. Since the process takes so long, this cycle will repeat itself for at least a few more years. The NAR will report November’s existing home sales figures on Wednesday, and the index is expected to show a slight increase. As long as it’s moving up, that’s good news for the economy.
Selling a home is, for many people, a very stressful and emotional thing to do. The longer you’ve been your home, the more attached you become to it. Unfortunately, this can affect your ability to do what selling a home really is: a business transaction. When you let the emotions and sentiments overtake things, you run the risk of making hasty (and sometimes poor) decisions. Here are the top 4 mistakes seller’s can make. Try to avoid these, and you’ll be able to complete the transaction with realistic expectations.
1. Overpricing – Let’s face it, it’s a different market now. Everyone thinks their home is the best on the block (and it might be), but being realistic about the “market” value is important. Here is where you really need to listen to your Realtor.
2. Present during showings – This can sometimes stifle potential buyers’ from expressing opinions. Again, use your Realtor to filter relevant information. It’s common for negative feedback to be misconstrued as personal insults. And this can cause some sellers to reject offers for the wrong reasons.
3. Property languishing – It’s a simple fact that the longer a property stays on the market, the worse the offers are likely to get. I’d guess that a home gets the most attention in the first month it’s listed (maybe 2?). “Waiting it out” for a better offer can be counterproductive, and cost money.
4. Stay “detached” – It is imperative to stay emotionally detached and be ready to hear criticism. Remember, this criticism is only part of the negotiation process and not a personal affront. Selling a home is an aggressive and confrontational process to begin with. The seller wants the highest price, and the buyer wants the lowest. When selling try to keep these points in mind, so you don’t lose yours.
The rates are trying to get back up to the 3.5% mark, and are almost there. As mentioned earlier, positive fiscal cliff news will equal an increase. So we’re looking at the bond markets carefully this week, as rates could jump up very quickly if investors’ caution over failed negotiations is turned to optimism
If I can do anything for you or anyone you know, please let me know. There will probably be no email until the new year. But I’ll be available for a little while on Monday and then back at it on Wednesday. Have a great holiday and a safe New Year. I appreciate all the recommendations and thank you again for all your support.