Posted in bay city, Bay City Michigan, Buying Homes, community, Finding a great Realtor, goal setting, Home Buyers, Home Selling Tips, midland, Midland Michigan, Midland Saginaw Real Estate, real estate, Real Estate Bay Midland Saginaw, Real Estate Market Statistics, Realtor, saginaw, Selling Homes, Selling Your Home, Tips for selling your home faster, Uncategorized

Less Sales – Higher Prices for Saginaw County

Based on number of transactions, March 2017 fell short in Saginaw County home sales when compared to a very robust March of last year, and even behind the 5 year March average. Don’t despair! If you are a buyer or seller there is still good news.

Despite the lower number of sales, Saginaw’s 12 month average sales price ending in March 2017 was at $104,314. This is up 3.33% over last year at the same time. I remember back in 2008 when the average home sale was at a whopping $64,143 – so we’ve made a lot of progress getting back to the “Pre-crash” price in 2005 and the average was just over $107,000.

Lots of numbers. What does it mean? Well, we can’t really formulate a trend from the low March sales. I’ll be keeping an eye on it to see if it was a statistical anomaly for the month. A slow March in essence is really a slowdown of activity in January. The plus side is the increase in home values for our various communities. That’s good news for sellers.  This in turn, realistically is also good for buyers.  Why? Well, all year we’ve seen low inventory of good homes.  As word spreads that home prices are continuing to rise, more sellers are likely to get their homes on the market. This gives a buyer more choices, which also gives them more leverage when making an offer.

The March trend was different for Bay and Midland Counties, despite how closely tied our Mid-Michigan communities are.  Bay County saw 25% more transactions this March over last year which is great; however the average sales price rose less than 1%.  Midland also saw about a 20% increase in number of transactions over last March plus had a 6.13% increase in values.

Quarterly reports should be out soon and that will perhaps give a little more insight as to whether March was a trend or an anomaly. Always good to keep in touch with the heartbeat of your community.  If you would like to know more specific information for your area, please feel free to call or email me. If you’d like to receive a free home market analysis – I’d love to hear from you.

~Build a better world by building a better you

  • Monique Gilbert – Your Real Estate Matchmaker – Connecting Buyers & Sellers for a Perfect Match
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Posted in bay city, Bay City Michigan, Buying Homes, community, Finding a great Realtor, Home Buyers, midland, Midland Michigan, Midland Saginaw Real Estate, real estate, Real Estate Bay Midland Saginaw, Realtor, saginaw, Uncategorized

Is Real Estate Investing For You?

Recently Saginaw was deemed the 2nd Best Housing Market in the United States. I know that seems to be contrary to what most people think when they ponder the state of Saginaw, with its loss of population and manufacturing jobs over the past decade.  There were a lot of factors that went into the study which gave us this infamous title. Though many of the factors are good things for us; higher number of residential sales in 2016 than any other in 10 years, average sales price climbing, etc – there’s more to it than that; and it and of itself could be a series of articles. But my point today is with the current changes in our market, could real estate investing be a good avenue for you?

If you are active in the stock market you are well aware of the volatility over the past years. If you’re toward the end of your working age, or recently retired – you may have had to make drastic changes to your retirement plans due to extensive losses.  What do you consider a good Return On Investment? (ROI) Many in the stock market are averaging 5-8%. You might be thrilled at a higher amount.

What if you purchased a home for $25,000 and put in $3,000 of repairs and rented it for $650-$800/month? Taking out taxes and insurance, even on a $650/month home, your income would be about $5,500. That in one year would be an APR ROI of almost 20%. Granted, you will occasionally need to do maintenance, perhaps pay a fee to a property management company. I would always suggest that for the first year, all of your rental income be kept in a designated savings account for future maintenance issues, as well as a good 10-15% each year.

With this income of 19.6%ROI annually, you would have a steady income and when the day came you wanted to sell, history tells us that you should get at least 100% of your original investment back as well. Why isn’t everyone doing this? Well, a lot of people are. I don’t have any stats about the percent of homes being purchased in Saginaw by out of area investors but I know it is much higher than any other time in the past ten years.

Let me be very clear that being a landlord, even if you hire a property management company, is not risk free.  You need to do a great job in selecting tenants (or the PM co. does) You need to be sure you’re setting those maintenance funds aside. There will be tenants who do crazy things and cost you money.

You may decide the risk for damages would be less if you were dealing with more expensive rentals. For example I recently had a client who purchased a home for $60,000 in the Township and then rented it for $1300/month.  That’s an awesome ROI, but a higher initial investment. You have to do what you think is best. And that might be nothing at all! But I believe it bears thinking about.

If you think investing might be worth looking into, feel free to call or email me. We have a great property management division here at Berkshire Hathaway too. If you want some honest advice I would be happy to sit down with you.

 

Posted in bay city, Bay City Michigan, Best Time to Sell, Buying Homes, community, Finding a great Realtor, Home Buyers, midland, Midland Michigan, Midland Saginaw Real Estate, real estate, Real Estate Bay Midland Saginaw, Realtor, saginaw, Selling Homes

…Giving Your Character That Ravishing Red…

Dear Friends:

Fall has been beautiful thus far and soon the festivities of Thanksgiving shall begin. We shall see gourds, pumpkins, shocks of corn, cornucopias, and turkeys galore. Though I personally am not much looking forward to the wintry mix that is sure to soon follow; Thanksgiving is definitely my favorite day of the year.

It is a time I am able to take just a very short break and surround myself with family, my extended family. All five of my siblings, their children, and grandchildren gather at my parents for a day or two of full tabletops, glorious wafting smells arising from the oven, mixed with laughter of children and adults alike. We have pillow fights, card games, leaf wars, football, and more.  I am blessed to have a family who loves to share these types of days together. I am blessed also that we have a wonderful home to gather in and enough in the bank to put whatever we’d like in the oven and on that table.

I encourage you, even if you aren’t a Thanksgiving Day “celebrator”, to take this opportunity to inventory those things in which you can be thankful.  As we watch the leaves turn from their bright greens to ravishing reds, glorious golds, and soft yellows we can turn our thoughts to the changes in our own lives from the past year. Maybe it wasn’t an easy year – those struggles leaving you stronger in the end, giving your character that ravishing red. Maybe there were wonderful celebrations providing you with glorious golden memories, and those little moments to cherish like the soft yellow leaves twirling down in the fall winds.  Whatever has transpired this year; we all have things to be thankful for.

“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, & change ordinary opportunities into blessings” – William Arthur Ward

Blessings to you and yours,

Monique Gilbert

Posted in Bay City Michigan, Midland Michigan, Real Estate Market Statistics

1st Quarter Stats Come In! Saginaw Update, Midland & Bay Quarterly Report

MARKET STATS – SAGINAW UPDATE – MIDLAND 1ST QUARTER REPORT – BAY 1ST QUARTER REPORT

As insanely busy as the 1st quarter was for me, and the positive statistics I wrote about in my last edition; it appears Saginaw County in general showed a decline when compared to the last four years. My report a few weeks ago for Saginaw spoke of lesser amount of transactions, but the positivity of the steadily increasing average sales price. It appears, at least for the 1st quarter, when all is said and done that the increase of prices seems to have hit a standstill, and the number of transactions is still down. However (you’ll always hear the bright side from me, and I know there always IS a bright side) the fact remains that there are still high demand areas, and if your home is priced accurately and is clean – there’s a market for it! I’m consistently hearing agents say we need more inventory, that they’re crazy busy, and there’s a low supply of “nice” homes.  I’ll touch base in another session about the best ways to make your home worth more without spending a fortune.

MIDLAND STATS

Anyone from Mid-Michigan can tell you that though our Tri-County borders bring us together, the housing markets are very different. Midland tends to have the highest average home sale price of the three counties. They are also the only county of the three who didn’t see the 40% drop in home values back in 2008-2009. In fact, they are already showing prices a bit higher than 2005 and just a hair below the highest in a decade that occurred in 2007.  The average home sale in Midland is currently around $156,000. Though the number of transactions here was also down somewhat, the rebound in price seems to be enough to make up for the total volume in sales.  There are however, areas of Midland County as a whole that have suffered more than others. Again, like Saginaw and Bay – it is the out-area townships that are having a Days-On-Market (DOM) issue. For instance a home in Lee Township in the $150,000-200,000 price point shows an average DOM of 36 months and over in Edenville Township if your home is over the $300,000 price you may expect a whopping 48 month average DOM! As a whole, I am seeing a lot of “green” on my Midland Stats sheet though – which means an average DOM under 3 months, and that’s great! These DOM’s are an average and don’t take into account if you’re listing with a great agent or just an agent, and trust me it makes a difference! (That’s another blog topic to come – What makes a great agent) All-in-all Midland County, you’re doing pretty well.

BAY COUNTY STATS

I mentioned in my previous entry that covered Saginaw, that looking at Bay County’s long term stats really surprised me.  I think most people believe Bay County to be doing pretty well but looking at the average prices over the last decade shows Bay County to have suffered greatly, and has the slowest rebound in terms of recovering prices.  In 2005 the average home was $140,000. It dropped to just $70,000 in 2009 (yes, 50%!) and has only rebounded to about $92,000 so it has quite a ways to go before getting back to “before the crash” prices. The total volume for Bay County did pick up quite a bit from 2012-2014. 2014 landed right around $95 million in sales volume which is a positive 28% compared to 2008. I’m seeing mostly green in the Bay County Stats as well, which is great! There are only a handful of red areas here, which are all in the higher price points. If you don’t have a home worth more than $300,000 in Pinconning, or more than half a million in the City, you should be just fine.

SUMMARY – All in all, as I will always continue to say, the market can be quite a hilly road on a graph but whether it’s on the downhill or upward trek of the thing – homes are selling. The key is to get the right agent, who will work hard to sell your home and for you to listen to your agent when it comes to their suggestions. A good agent will not advise you to spend a lot of money, but they will have a small list of invaluable items you can do to be sure your home is the one that sells! They’ll also market your home, not just place it on the MLS with a sign in your yard. But here I go on a whole other topic… so til next time – —–

And remember, if you would like a full marketing report or market analysis on your home, please send me a message at moniquegilbert@bhhsmi.com or sign up for Market Watch at http://www.homesofmidmichigan.com