Month: December 2011

Market Overview -Nov. 2011

Overall Market Comment:

Members of the Greater Louisville Association of Realtors® posted 870 sales during the month of November 2011. This month’s sales figures continued a well established trend of outpacing the same period last year, which posted 772 sales during November 2010. The November 2011 sales were 13% stronger than November 2010, continued evidence that the local market has adapted to the post‐Home Buyer Tax Credit market of early 2010. The current year‐to‐date sales figures are behind a similar period in 2010, down nearly 5% to 10,115 sold units from 10,595, but strong sales over the past 4 months have closed the gap that was double digits. The average selling price for November 2011 was $156,903, down $5,678 from October 2011, and down $16,263 when viewed against November 2010. The year‐to‐date average sales price of $163,557 for 2011 remains close to the year‐to‐date figure from 2010, $165,788.

For the year, average sales prices have retreated from their peak in July 2011, but remain above the low for 2011 which was posted in March at $152,801. Inventory, or the number of homes for sale, fell to their lowest level of the year, to 7,825 units in November, from 8,373 in October and 8,704 units in September. The number of homes for sale continues to exceed 2010 levels and remains at a 9 monthsupply; inventory levels near a 6 month supply are often associated with an in‐balance market.

Overall, GLAR members continue to sell homes and move inventory in a challenging market. Realtors® continue to absorb a barrage of housing news and data, likewise, buyers and sellers are also saturated with headlines relative to the housing market, whether a bottom has been reached, the depth of foreclosures and low mortgage interest rates. The fact remains that Metro Louisville home prices have retreated from 2010 levels, but remain above lows posted in the current year. Sales volume has gained strength over the past 120 days, with year‐to‐date sales lagging only 480 units behind last year. Yearendfigures are expected to be posted next month and will likely show a 4‐5% loss in volume, when compared to 2010. 

 

Jefferson County Market Comment:
Realtors® posted 617 closed sales in Jefferson County in November, a decline of 3% from October, but an increase of 11% over November 2010. For the year, the average Jefferson County selling price has lost 3% from a similar period last year. The supply of homes on the market in Jefferson County stands at 4791, down 408 units from October, but up 446 units from November 2010. At the current absorption rate, the county has a 8 month inventory of homes on the market. Year‐to‐date sales in the county stand at 7036 units, down 5% from a similar period last year. In summary, the Jefferson County market followed the broader GLAR analysis by posting an increase in sales volume when matched against the same period last year, while recording the lowest inventory level of the year.

Oldham County Market Comment:
The number of closed sales in Nov 2011 almost mirrored closed sales of Nov 2010, bringing the YTD total up 7.8% compared to the same time last year. The YTD median price figure was up 1% ($236k vs $234k) and is less volatile than single month data points. The number of sales going under contract in Nov 2011 was 48 vs. 52 during Nov 2010, and the inventory of unsold homes remained higher than last year by 10%. Continued low mortgage rates, improved local employment trends and consumer confidence will be the key factors that will allow for the absorption of the current inventory of homes and the resumption of a balanced market in Oldham County.

Bullitt County Market Comment:
Realtors® posted 66 closed sales in Bullitt County in November 2011, nearly even with the 63 units sold in October and 65 units closed in September 2011. However, the November sales were up nearly 136% from November 2010. The average selling price in the county for November was $137,666, down $4,920 from October, and down 7% from November 2010. Year‐to‐date sales, in the county, stand at 689 units, down 3% from a similar period in 2010. Supply, or the number of homes on the market, has fallen to 546 units, down 19 units from October, but up nearly 14% from a similar period in 2010.

http://www.LouisvilleRealtors.com

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Stolen Christmas: 5 Ways to Prevent Horrible Holiday Crimes at Home

With Christmas just around the corner, home owners are neck-deep in decorations and last-minute shopping, excited to soon share their holiday cheer with loved ones. But thieves and vandals also have something to look forward to in the holiday season. Cars and homes filled with easy-to-grab boxed goodies and lawns decked out with opulent embellishments make tempting targets for predators. To help you make sure the naughties don’t ruin it for the nice, here are a few tips for protecting your home.

1. Keep your “check-ins” in check.

Three months ago in Nashua, N.H., burglars targeted a home because the occupant told his Facebook “friends” he was going out of town. Announcing to your whole social network that you’re not home or that you just received an expensive present may not be a good idea. The ACLU and others have cautioned against posting information about where you are and what you do. If it falls into the wrong hands, the consequences could be dangerous.

It’s also something to think about if you’re out shopping for good deals. Through location-based applications such as Facebook Places and Foursquare, vendors are offering valuable promotions to shoppers who “check-in” at participating stores. But broadcasting this type of information could cost you more than it could save.

Protect yourself:
Never allow check-ins at your own home (you’ll be alerting potential thieves to your address).
Don’t make comments about items you’ve purchased or received as gifts.
Don’t check in online when you’re out of town.
Limit sharing information to friends and family by only accepting people you know as friends and followers.

2. Remember to lock your door.

There’s something Iraq War veteran and Rhode Island resident Christopher Adamovich, recipient of three purple hearts, will never again forget—to lock his back door. Last Christmas, the first he had planned to celebrate in his newly bought home, he was robbed. Thieves entered through the unlocked back door and made off with hundreds of dollars of presents, including a Nintendo Wii, a Sony DVD player, and assorted toys. This type of scenario isn’t uncommon. Security company ADT says 40% of all burglaries are termed as “no force entries.” That means the predators gain entry through unlocked doors and windows.

Protect yourself:
Check all doors and windows are locked and that your deadbolt (if you have one) works.

3. Don’t give vandals a chance to act.

In 2009, a North Carolina family decided to turn their front yard into a winter wonderland, complete with inflatable Winnie the Pooh and Grinch figures, to celebrate their little boy’s second birthday. It was a momentous occasion—their little one suffered from a rare bone disease and wasn’t expected to live long. Sadly, he has since passed away. During the display’s first night out, before they could show it off to little Ethan in the morning, vandals slashed the larger-than-life characters. Some acts of vandalism are premeditated and some are spur of the moment, but both leave you with expensive property damage and a ruined holiday.

Protect yourself:
Install motion detector lights on all sides of your house, and if possible make sure they’re visible from the road.

4. Deny easy access to the garage.

In November, a Corpus Christi, Texas, family left their garage door opener in their truck overnight. To their dismay, they woke up to discover thieves had used it to gain access to their garage. All the tools, a lawn mower, and other equipment were stolen—along with all of the Christmas presents the family had stored in the garage for their daughter. It’s convenient to keep the garage door opener in the car for easy access. It’s also just the kind of thing observant criminals are on the lookout for.

Protect yourself:
Never leave your garage door opener in your car.
Always make sure your garage door is closed and locked, with the inside door secure.
Don’t tempt fate—try not to use the garage as a hiding place for gifts.

5. Display the tree, not the gifts.

For many families, a perfectly picturesque holiday includes the Christmas tree, all done up with lights, ornaments, and beautifully wrapped gifts, displayed in front of the living room window. Trouble is, it’s a scene crooks also like to see.

Protect yourself:
Don’t put out your gifts until Christmas Eve.
Dispose of product boxes at a recycling center, not your garbage cans.

All it takes is one thief’s determination to potentially ruin your holiday. Remain vigilant this Christmas!

Source: NAR’s Houselogic.com.

Read more: http://www.houselogic.com/home-advice/home-security/stolen-christmas-5-ways-prevent-horrible-holiday-crimes-home/#ixzz1gQo9rFc9

6 Tips for Terrific Holiday Lights

Get terrific holiday lights by following these six tips for holiday lights from Mary Beth Gotti, director of the GE Lighting & Electrical Institute:

  • Know your lights. If you’re buying new lights, make sure they’re compatible with your existing light strings.
  • Unsure how many lights you need for your tree? Figure 100 to 150 lights per vertical foot of the tree.
  • Use LED holiday lights on your tree. LED holiday lights use up to 80% less energy and are cooler than traditional incandescent lights.
  • Add movement. Want that snowflake display to sparkle or your eight tiny reindeer to trot? Give the illusion of movement with color changing lights. Many options are available, including twinkling, chasing, and fade-in, fade-out styles. New this year: cascading icicles with a circuit that gives off a melting effect.
  • Mix lighting styles. To make holiday lighting stand out, pair strings of different sized lights together to add depth to decor. On the tree, set a base of white lights at the bottom and continue upward, adding strands of large bulbs and novelty lights for color and variety.
  • Find inspiration. Every year, thousands of tree lighting ceremonies take place all over the country. Draw ideas from these magical designs. One of the most renowned tree lightings is the National Christmas Tree in President’s Park, a tradition that began in 1923.

    Source: GE Lighting & Electrical Institute
    From: NAR’s HouseLogic.com

Read more: http://www.houselogic.com/news/lighting/6-tips-terrific-holiday-lights/#ixzz1gQm9gGnG