Greater Louisville Association of Realtors®

Tight Inventory Translates to Quick Home Sales

The Greater Louisville Association of Realtors® (GLAR) reported year-to-date (YTD) sales up 6.6% compared the same time last year. Sales in September 2016 were up 7.7%, vs September 2015, with 1,600 homes and condos sold. The median price was up 4.8% YTD and the average was 3.0% higher YTD.

In Jefferson County, the average price in September 2016 was $205,975 and the median was $167,000. For all MLS areas, the inventory of available properties was 22.5% lower than at the same time last year. In Jefferson County the inventory of homes and condos for sale was 23.7% lower than September 2015.

GLAR President Allison Bartholomew commented that, “The tight inventory of starter homes continued during September, translating into quick sales. At the same time, activity at the higher end was at a more moderate pace. Our members are looking forward to a healthy fall market with reasonable gains in sales and prices.”

The National Association of Realtors® (NAR) Chief Economist, Lawrence Yun, commented recently that, “Healthy labor markets in most of the country should be creating a sustained demand for home purchases. However, there’s no question that after peaking in June, sales in a majority of the country have inched backwards because inventory isn’t picking up to tame price growth and replace what’s being quickly sold.”

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Chairman Ed Brady recently remarked that, “As household incomes rise, builders in many markets across the nation are reporting that they are seeing more serious buyers, a positive sign that the housing market continues to move forward.” He added that, “The single-family market continues to make gradual gains and we expect this upward momentum will build throughout the remainder of the year and into 2017.”

September 2016 Housing Stats Report

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How to Host a Sizzling Summer Open House

According to the National Association of Realtors®, more than 40 percent of all homes sold last year were between the months of May and August. There are so many reasons why summer may be the perfect time to put your home on the market – families are trying to settle into a new place before the school year starts and buyers have their tax refunds firmly in hand. But with so many others reaching the same conclusion, how do you make your home stand out?

A well planned open house allows potential buyers to picture how life in this home would be, and in the summer people tend to be more relaxed; it’s the time of vacations and lazy days. So making your home’s open house a haven from the heat is the best way to help them visualize that this is the house is where they’ll want to spend all of their summers.

Here are a few tips to help your home’s open house stand out this summer.

Pump the A/C. It’s easy for a house to become stuffy and warm during the summer, especially with exterior doors frequently opening and closing, so make sure that you have the air conditioning running whenever you’re hosting potential buyers.  Just make sure to keep the temperature cool and inviting, not set to a deep freeze!

Curb Appeal. Your home’s curb appeal is its first impression, and the summer months can be harsh on your home’s front lawn. Unlike in winter, where fresh snow in the front yard can appear romantic and enticing to buyers, there is nothing attractive about the dry, dead lawns of summer. Water frequently or update your home’s landscaping to something grass-free.

Outdoor Living. If your home has a pool, a large deck or an outdoor kitchen, the summer months are the perfect time to highlight them.  Put some lemonade out for buyers to enjoy on the patio and keep the pool crystal clean.  Remember, however, that summer means kids are out of school, and they may be joining their parents on open house tours, so make sure that pool gates are kept locked tight for safety.

Embrace the Season. Potential buyers may be hot and thirsty when they arrive, so prepare for it. Have a cooler with ice-cold bottled water ready and waiting for them the moment they walk in the house, and have refreshing snacks, like watermelon or popsicles, available in the kitchen or on the patio. This will help home buyers picture your home as their oasis in the heat.

Following a few easy open house tips can help you quickly find the right buyer this summer.  If you are interested in selling or buying a home this summer, contact a local Realtor®.

May Stats Show Home Sales Up 11.5%, Inventory Down

The Greater Louisville Association of Realtors® (GLAR) reported May 2016 sales up 4.1% with 1,573 homes and condos sold versus 1,510 last May. Year-to-date, compared with January-May 2015, home sales were up 11.5%. The median price for all areas in January-May 2016 was up 3.3% compared last year, and the average price was up 0.7% versus last year. In Jefferson County, the average price in May 2016 was $208,469 and the median was $169,000. For all MLS areas, the inventory of available properties was 23.6% lower than at the same time last year. In Jefferson County, the decreased inventory of homes and condos for sale was even more pronounced at 27.6% lower than May 2015.

GLAR President Greg Taylor commented that, “The limited inventory of homes for sale is not just limited to Jefferson County. Bullitt and Oldham County inventory is also down 21% and 25% respectively. Continued low mortgage rates are keeping affordability intact; however, our members are seeing rising prices in neighborhoods that attract first-time buyers due to the low inventory.”

Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors® commented that, “Except for the West, where supply shortages and stark price growth are hampering buyers the most, sales are meaningfully higher than a year ago in much of the country.” He continued by saying, “Looking ahead, with demand holding steady and supply levels still far from sufficient, the market for entry-level and mid-priced homes will likely continue to be the most competitive heading into the summer months.”

May 2016 Stat Report

Today’s Smart Homes

Many people grew up with the idea that one day we would all be living in homes like the Jetsons’, the 1960s cartoon family living in the future, with a closet that showers and dresses you and a robot that makes your breakfast. While homes aren’t yet quite there, smart home technology has advanced leaps and bounds in recent years and has become more popular than ever.

Technology has changed the way we live in and interact with our homes. Smart homes can be programmed to react to their owner and tailored to fit with a person’s lifestyle – homeowners can even design the home to meet their specific needs.

Here are a few ways smart home technology can be utilized:

Security. New products allow homeowners to monitor their homes from a distance—even internationally. Owners can lock doors and windows from their portable computers, or access security camera recordings from a mobile device. It’s not just about keeping the property safe, it’s about keeping you and your family safe too. Fire, carbon monoxide and gas leak alarms that connect to your smartphone can give you peace of mind that everything is all right in your home even when you aren’t physically there.

Energy Savings. Smart thermostats allow homeowners to program their home’s temperature and adjust it even after they’ve left, avoiding any needless heating or cooling of an empty house. Automated lighting programs let people turn the lights on and off in their home from their smartphone or laptop from anywhere in the world. Smart green features have been in high demand for years now. These products not only help the environment but also bring your electricity and water bills down, saving you money.

Convenience. One of the main appeals of smart homes is that they can make the home owner’s life easier. A garage door opener connected to your smartphone and a sprinkler system that syncs with the weather forecast so the lawn is never watered when it’s raining are all features that simplify day-to-day life. Soon, instead of having to check the refrigerator to see if anything is running low, a homeowner will receive a text message from their smart kitchen reminding him or her to buy eggs.

Although the benefits that these technologies provide are numerous, it is important not lose sight of the risks smart homes can pose to the owner’s privacy. As smart technology becomes more established in homes, it becomes even more important that the necessary precautions are taken to protect data and privacy. That’s why the National Association of Realtors® worked with the Online Trust Alliance, a non-profit with the mission to enhance online trust, to create the Smart Home Checklist. The checklist offers guidance to home buyers and sellers about how to stay in control of the privacy and security of their smart home technology.

Young Buyers Prefer Walkable Communities, Says REALTOR Survey

Most potential homebuyers are not only looking for the perfect home, they are also looking for the perfect neighborhood. According to the National Association of Realtors® 2015 National Community and Transportation Preference Survey, when Americans think of their dream neighborhood they often think of a mixed-used, walkable community.

Realtors® are community builders and understand the complexities that go into creating a strong and successful community. “While there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all neighborhood, more and more Americans, especially younger ones, are being drawn to mixed-use communities with a combination of homes and business and walkable areas.

Walkability is defined as a measure of how friendly an area is to walking. Can someone go grocery shopping on foot? Are there shops and restaurants within walking distance? Are there plenty of sidewalks, and are they well maintained? These are all factors taken into account when determining an area’s walkability.

According to the survey, millennials, those aged 18 to 34, prefer walking as a method of transportation by 12 percentage points over driving. Millennials are also the generation most likely to make sacrifices to purchase a home in these types of communities, such as buying a smaller home or buying a house without a backyard.

Younger buyers are looking for communities where they can walk to a restaurant and don’t have to drive to pick up their weekly groceries. However, it is not only millennials who are hoping to move into walkable neighborhoods; these preferences are seen across generations.

Based on the survey, women of all generations are more likely than men to show a preference for walkability, with 61 percent saying that the availability of sidewalks in a community with stores and restaurants to walk to is very important to them. And 48 percent of all respondents answered that they would prefer to live in communities containing houses with small yards but within easy walking distance of the community’s amenities rather than living in communities with houses that have large yards but are driving distance to all amenities.

As their preferences shift from the suburbs to urban centers, homebuyers continue to rely on Realtors® to help them find their dream homes and neighborhoods. Realtors® are the most trusted resource for real estate information and have unparalleled knowledge of local markets and conditions, helping their clients to fulfill their real estate goals.

July 2015 Home Sales up 13%

The Greater Louisville Association of Realtors® (“GLAR”) reported year-to-date sales up 13% with 9,373 homes and condos sold versus 8,290 at the same time last year. Sales were up 14.2% in July 2015 (1,707 units) compared to July 2014 (1,494 units). Prices in July 2015 were comparable to July 2014, but the year-to-date statistics show a 7% increase in values. In Jefferson County, the average price was $188,703 and the median was $158,500. For all MLS areas, the inventory of available properties was 19% lower than at the same time last year.

GLAR President Paula Colvin commented that, “GLAR members still see a sellers’ market for starter and move up homes. The market for higher priced properties is more in balance.”

At the national level the pending homes sales figure was up 3.2% in June, representing the highest pace of sales since February 2007. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors® (“NAR”) commented that, “Buyers have come back in force…This wave of demand is being fueled by a year-plus of steady job growth and an improving economy that’s giving more households the financial wherewithal and incentive to buy.

Click here for July 2015 Housing Stats

Louisville 2015 Home Sales up 8.3% YTD with 6.7% Increase in Median Price

The Greater Louisville Association of Realtors® (“GLAR”) reported year-to-date sales up 8.3%, with 2,891 homes and condos sold versus 2,669 at the same point last year. Sales were up 9.6% in March 2015 (1,140 units) compared to March 2014 (1,040 units), and the median selling price in all Multiple Listing Service (“MLS”) areas was up 8.7% compared to the same month last year.  The median price (year-to-date) in Jefferson County was up 4.9% ($139,500) and the average (year-to-date) was up 6.0% ($175,213). For all MLS areas, the inventory of available properties remains 15.5% lower than the same month last year.

GLAR President Paula Colvin commented that, “homes that are staged and priced correctly are selling quickly.” She also added that, “the inventory of homes for sale is still relatively low and we hope to see more sellers decide to list their homes in this spring. Early April data shows a continuation of the strong sales trend and a modest rebound in the number of new listings.”

On the national level, Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors®, commented that, “Jobs and wages are steadily improving. The mortgage credit box is opening up a bit. When you look at these trends along with the prospects for new home construction and continuing low interest rates, first-time buyers could be poised for a comeback in 2015.”

Click the link below to view full stat report:
March 2015 Release