The economy is improving. Jobs have increased and the unemployment rate has fallen to 5%. This is all great news for our country and real estate. It also means that the Federal Reserve is more inclined to raise interest rates. The “Fed” has had interest rates very low for quite some time. This has allowed homeowners to refinance at even lower rates, and buyers to take advantage of lower mortgage payments. That could all be altered a bit with a December rate hike when the Federal Reserve meets on December 15th and 16th of this year. What does this potential rate hike mean for your buyer clients? It means several things, but the important thing is how do you get your buyer clients motivated enough to make a move before this impending December rate hike?
An agreement has been reached so our local MRIS portals listings to Zillow. How did this happen? For a while now there have been rumblings that Zillow was in trouble. Big Trouble. It all began when a man you may have heard of named Rupert Murdoch, who owns News Corp. purchased a company called Move, which owns ListHub. ListHub is a big company that takes real estate listings from local MLS’s around the country and syndicates them out to various aggregate websites such as Zillow, Trulia, and others. ListHub is actually a direct competitor to Zillow, so now that Rupert Murdoch owns Move, its kind of a weird situation. Now ListHub(Rupert Murcoch)is telling Zillow that in April of this year, when their syndication contract ends they are going to be “cut off” from their listing portal. Again, BIG trouble for Zillow. Where will Zillow go for listings and remain alive?
I went down to Austin Texas in September as a “guest” of Keller Williams to check out the Keller Williams Mega Camp. If you don’t know what the “Mega Camp” is…it’s a large gathering of the Keller Williams Leadership that includes, Regional Directors, Owners, Operating Principals, Team Leaders, and of course Gary Keller and the people that make up the company “Keller Williams.” At Mega Camp the leadership learns more about the company and how they are expanding, growing, and continue to innovate the Real Estate space. I was honored to be invited to attend as a Title Sales person when in most cases Title people are asking to attend these events and rarely get to attend. The first two days are reserved for the Leadership of the company, and the last 3 days individual Realtors fly into Austin and take part to learn about how to best grow their business and integrate the latest technologies the company is introducing and selling strategies. The whole experience was very interesting to me. So…here is what I learned at Keller Williams Mega Camp in Austin Texas.
Have you taken or been nominated for the Ice Bucket Challenge? I have seen this challenge done all over the internet via, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Some have been done fantastically, and others were also funny, but mostly because of a funny mishap of dropped water or something crashing on the person’s head. All kidding aside there is something that can be taken from the Ice Bucket Challenge that should cause Real Estate agents to pause and take notice. Here is my take on the Ice Bucket Challenge, the use of Video, Self-Promotion, and Syndication.
So…this happened. Not surprising really. For years Zillow, Trulia, and Realtor.com have been battling it out for a while and even though there will still be 3 sites…it is really just 2. I have seen on my Facebook feed many Realtors saying things like “Zillow buying Trulia is going to be awesome!” Or…”Zillow buying Trulia is exciting!” Really!? Exciting for them…but not the individual Real Estate agent. In fact, it should be quite scary to hear this news if I was a Real Estate agent. There are many factors that make it scary for Realtors now that Zillow has eaten up one of the large aggregates. Here are some of the things to consider…
I came across Chesterbrook Woods Subdivision not long ago as I was holding a broker open for one of my real estate clients. I decided to drive around this gorgeous area and check it out. What I found is Chesterbrook Woods Subdivision is a very quiet place filled with many upscale properties. The average home price in Chesterbrook Woods is around $1.2 Million dollars. It is also located not far from Potomac High School and by the Lower Potomac River right off route 123 in McLean Virginia. This gives people very easy access in and out of the area and near a major road. Are you considering buying or selling a home in McLean, Virginia? If so, here is some more great information you would want to know about Chesterbrook Woods Subdivision.
Are you a Keller Williams agent and heading to the Valley of the Sun next week for Keller Williams Family Reunion? If you are, you are probably wondering what there is to do in downtown Phoenix and the surrounding area like Scottsdale. I lived in the Phoenix area for 11yrs doing what I do now…helping Real Estate agents grow their business on behalf of a Title Company. In Phoenix I worked for Lawyers Title, which is a top company in that area. If you interact with any of my former people you are in good company. Ok…now on to the good stuff. As a Realtor heading to Phoenix for Keller Williams Family Reunion I’m sure you have your room all reserved in the downtown Phoenix area…but what about at night or during your down time? What is there to do? Where to go?
Did you know that right now is a great time to refinance your home loan? There are a lot of consumers out there that don’t realize that they can refinance or that there are ways to consolidate debt, save money, and lower their mortgage payment. This can happen even with the rise of mortgage interest rates over the last few months. Since I’m not a Loan Officer I brought in a client of mine, Tim Latham with MVB Mortgage to talk to everyone about why it still makes sense to refinance your home loan and what your options are in today’s market.
In today’s market we have seen a shift with rising interest rates. This rise has occured over the last 30 days or so due to the Federal Govt deciding to “taper” off the bond buying program that has caused rates to remain below 4% for much of the last 12 months. The rising interest rates have had little impact on home buyers in the Northern Virginia/Washington DC market as the lack of inventory is causing people to still purchase homes as fast as they can find their way onto the market. Many potential home buyers are still wondering how this will affect their buying power going forward? This is a great question! Here are why it is still a great time to purchase a home with rising interest rates!
When I first moved to the Washington DC area in June 2012 I mostly have worked marketing to Real Estate agents and Mortgage Lenders helping them grow their business in the Northern Virginia area. I drive around the area and by doing so I get to see all the great place that people call home. There is one up and coming place that I really love and that is the South Riding Subdivision in Chantilly Virginia. It is great because it is very lush and not in a big city. It is very family oriented and has great houses that are not as expensive than if you purchased in the Arlington area closer to Washington DC. Here are some great reasons why the South Riding Subdivision in Chantilly should be your next spot to call home.