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Marc Lauermann's Blog

By Marc Lauermann ABR, SFR | Agent in 59047
  • Prudential Real Estate Outlook Survey

    Posted Under: General Area in Bozeman, Market Conditions in Bozeman, Home Buying in Bozeman  |  August 2, 2012 1:51 PM  |  1,179 views  |  No comments

    Prudential Real Estate Outlook Survey: Americans Are Increasingly Confident About Homeownership, Real Estate Market Recovery

    [Bozeman, MT] –Prudential Real Estate franchise network,  released the quarterly Prudential Real Estate Outlook Survey showing that Americans’ confidence in homeownership and real estate continues climbing from the first quarter and a year earlier. In Bozeman, MT year to date, the number of homes sold increased 7% over the same period a year ago.  Similar to the national sentiment, signs of growing confidence are apparent among local residents as home prices in Bozeman, MT are stabilizing.

    According to the national survey:

    • 69% believe that real estate is a good investment despite the market volatility of the past few years, up 6% from the first-quarter 2012 survey and 17 percentage points from first quarter 2011.
    • 72% expressed confidence that the real estate market and property values will improve during the next two years, including a 6-point jump among those “very confident” or “confident” vs. the first quarter 2012, and a 14-point gain in this subset over first quarter 2011.
    • Nearly two-thirds (64%) of respondents have a favorable perception of the U.S. housing market, up from 60% in the first-quarter survey and 52% in first-quarter 2011).

    “The American Dream is clearly on the mend,” said Mike Basile, Broker/Owner, Prudential Montana Real Estate, “Americans are feeling better about homeownership and the ongoing recovery taking place in residential real estate. Many are increasingly optimistic about their personal circumstances and, with housing affordability near all-time highs, they want to act on the opportunity.”

    Factors driving homeownership

    Homeownership remains the central component to the American Dream, as 78% of respondents said owning a home was still “very important” – the same percentage reported in the first-quarter 2012 study. A full 98% said homeownership was at least somewhat important.

    In addition, with interest rates at historically low levels, 96% of respondents at least “somewhat agree” that now is a great time to buy a home – the same percentage reported in the first-quarter 2012 study.

    More than the financial reasons to buy a home, respondents placed higher priority on the emotional reasons for homeownership. “Control over living space,” “more space for family,” “safer neighborhood” and “good place to raise a family” rated higher than “a good investment,” “financial security” and “tax benefits.”

    “More people in Bozeman, MT are buying homes because people still find Bozeman an attractive place to live and they have confidence in Bozeman’s future” said Basile. “Owning a home contributes to their quality of life in the aspects of privacy and other intangible rewards of having their own space.”

    Caution remains

    The survey also shows that consumers remain cautious about the real estate market and process, as a full 30% “strongly agree” that the housing crisis reminds them to be more careful about buying or selling a home; up two percentage points from the first-quarter 2012 survey.

    In addition:

    • Nearly two-thirds (65%) of respondents indicated that financing or getting a mortgage is more challenging than it was before the market crisis, which is up from 58% in the firstquarter 2012 survey.
    • Among those considering a real estate transaction, 39% expressed concern they won’t be able to sell their current home, up 11 points from the first-quarter 2012 survey and 10 points from first quarter 2011.
    • Given the dynamics and challenges of today’s real estate market, nearly three out of four (74%) respondents think it is more important than ever to work with a good real estate agent for the best success in buying or selling a home (up from 71% in the first-quarter survey and 67% in first quarter 2011).

    “The real estate market is improving in Bozeman, MT and consumers face many choices,” said Basile. “Consumers should seek out a real estate professional who can help them make the best choices to suit their needs.”

    Prudential Real Estate Outlook Survey Methodology

    Interviews with 1,250 Americans who are “in the market” to buy or sell a home were conducted online by Palisades Media Ventures and Penn Schoen Berland, between May 22 and June 1, 2012. Respondents are aged 25-64 with a household income of at least $50,000, and either recently bought/sold a home or are considering buying/selling a home. The margin of error is ± 2.8% for all respondents and higher for subgroups.

    Prudential, the Prudential logo and the Rock symbol are service marks of Prudential Financial, Inc. and its related entities and are used under license, with no other affiliation with Prudential.

  • Fly by Night Contractors

    Posted Under: Home Buying in Gallatin County, Remodel & Renovate in Gallatin County, Home Ownership in Gallatin County  |  June 5, 2012 12:07 PM  |  1,199 views  |  No comments
    Here is a good read when preparing to hire a contractor for your home or business as released by METNET today:

    Homeowners & Businesses Should be on the Lookout for Fly-By-Night Contractors

    (Helena, MT) As construction season gets into full swing, the Montana Department of Labor and Industry wants to remind businesses and homeowners to use caution when choosing a contractor. "There are a lot of legitimate contractors out there, but it's the fly-by-nighters who come in get their money and leave without doing the work that can devastate a homeowner or business," said Labor Commissioner Keith Kelly.  "We want to make sure that Montanans know if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is."
    Warning signs to watch out for include: the contractor will only accept payment in cash; is pressuring you into making a hasty decision, requiring you to pay in full up front, using high pressure sales tactics, arrives in an unmarked car or van, or refuses to give you a written estimate, contract or references.
    Here are some tips that both homeowners and businesses can follow when choosing a contractor:
    * Verify the contractor is registered with the State of Montana
    * Check with the State Construction Contractor Registration Unit to be sure that the contractor is in compliance
    * Find out if the contractor belongs to an industry association
    * Check for proper insurance (Liability, Workers' Compensation)
    * Call references; look at past projects
    * Have a contract detailing every aspect of the project including how and when paid
    * Communicate.  Assure each of you have a complete understanding of expectations
    * Visually inspect each part of the project

          Consumers who believe they have been scammed by a fly-by-night contractor who has taken their money but not performed the work promised, should contact the Office of Consumer Protection at (800) 481-6896 or (406) 444-4500.

    For more information on hiring the right contractor or to find a list of local contractors in your area log onto www.mtcontractor.com or call 406-444-7734.
  • 260 Cayuse Trail, Bozeman, MT 59718

    Posted Under: Home Selling in Bozeman  |  April 20, 2011 3:14 PM  |  1,344 views  |  No comments
    With Spring settling in to the Valley and Winter slowly letting go of its icy grip, new listings are popping up on the Bozeman market ahead of the flowers in the valley.  We have seen many new and interesting homes come to market here in Bozeman Montana, including this just listed offering south and west of Bozeman; close to town with that country feel.

    Please follow this link to review this home and explore all it has to offer:

    http://www.260cayusetrail.com/

    For more information on this home and the Bozeman real estate market this spring, please contact:

    Marc Lauermann  ABR,SFR
    Sales Associate
    Prudential Montana Real Estate

    (406) 581-8242

  • Senate approves extension and expansion of the First-Time home buyer tax credit

    Posted Under: Home Buying in Big Sky  |  November 4, 2009 3:43 PM  |  1,505 views  |  No comments
    The Senate has voted and passed an extension and expansion of the $8,000 First Time Home buyer tax credit.  The credit will be extended until April 30, 2010 and expanded to include higher income families and step up buyers.  The step up buyers, considered buyers who have been in their homes for 5 of the past 8 years, will be eligible for a maximum credit of $6,500. The extension has previously been endorsed by the Obama administration and is expected to go to vote in the house very quickly.  The credit is coupled with legislation for extension of unemployment benefits.

    More info can be found here: http://rismedia.com/2009-11-04/senate-clears-homebuyer-tax-credit-extension-may-pass-as-early-as-this-week/
     

  • Senate approves extension and expansion of the First-Time home buyer tax credit

    Posted Under: Home Buying in Bozeman  |  November 4, 2009 3:36 PM  |  1,502 views  |  No comments
    The Senate has voted and passed an extension and expansion of the $8,000 First Time Home buyer tax credit.  The credit will be extended until April 30, 2010 and expanded to include higher income families and step up buyers.  The step up buyers, considered buyers who have been in their homes for 5 of the past 8 years, will be eligible for a maximum credit of $6,500. The extension has previously been endorsed by the Obama administration and is expected to go to vote in the house very quickly.  The credit is coupled with legislation for extension of unemployment benefits.

    More info can be found here: http://rismedia.com/2009-11-04/senate-clears-homebuyer-tax-credit-extension-may-pass-as-early-as-this-week/

  • Obama Administration endorses extension of First Time Home-buyer tax credit

    Posted Under: Home Buying in Bozeman  |  October 29, 2009 4:03 PM  |  1,514 views  |  No comments
    Today, the Obama administration endorsed the extension of the First Time Home-buyer tax credit.
    Now we just need the legislature to get something passed.  If you have been following this story, there is discussion of extending the credit, expanding it to include home owners that have owned property for 5 years previous, raising income limits, and a slow phase out through 2010.  It would appear that with the recent Whitehouse endorsement, the extension is on the expressway to approval.

     Great article at US news and World Report. Link below:
    http://www.usnews.com/money/blogs/the-home-front/2009/10/29/first-time-home-buyer-tax-credit-gets-obama-nod.html

  • Senate working to extend and expand Homebuyer tax credit

    Posted Under: Home Buying  |  October 28, 2009 2:56 PM  |  1,484 views  |  No comments
    Lawmakers continue work on the details for an extension and expansion of the first time homebuyer tax credit.  According to an article written by Dawn Kopecki at Bloomberg.com, a compromise is being worked out on the proposal to replace the expiring $8,000 tax credit.
    Here is a link to the article in full:
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=ayS36Cg5hu5w

    Some people are saying that home sales from 2010 are being "stolen" in 2009 and we may feel the effects of of this in the next few quarters.  While I do not disagree with this in theory, my experience with first time home buyers in both Bozeman and Big Sky Montana is that they would be buying a home to take advantage of the low rates and lower list prices regardless of the tax credit.  But the fact that it is there has spurred them to take action faster than they may have with out the deadline looming.
     
    With an expansion of the credit allowing for higher income home purchasers to qualify for the credit as well as purchasers who do not already qualify for the credit, we may see a continued absorption of the inflated inventory currently on the markets.  If the expanded credit continues to soak up excess inventory, long term, that will continue to help markets stabilize.  
     At some point, the credit needs to go away and let the markets sort things out.  Short term, this will continue to get the fence sitters out there looking for property.

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