Winchester Distressed Properties Are No Longer Distressing

Winchester Distressed Properties Are No Longer Distressing

The good news for the Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market just keeps rolling in. It’s safe to say that Winchester distressed properties are no longer distressing most home-owners. What is a distressed property? A distressed property can be a short sale or a foreclosure (or REO, real estate owned).

Winchester Distressed Properties Are No Longer DistressingA short sale is a property the lender gives the home-owner permission to sell below the current loan balance. Many homeowners who bought in the pre-recession years, bought their homes at a premium price. For instance, a home that sold for $400,000 in 2006 lost value during the recession, and owners who carried those mortgages found themselves in trouble in 2008 and beyond.

Winchester distressed properties: What are they?

The Winchester real estate market lost an average of 33% in the fall of 2008, and soon after, Winchester distressed properties shot up. That $400,000 home was now worth $280,000 – $300,000. That left the home-owner with a debt of up to $100,000 beyond his home’s value which was no longer backed by his real estate. That scenario is where the often used real estate term, “under-water” originated. In that case, the owner was drowning in his mortgage debt because he owned more than the home was worth.

Distressed properties came in waves. The first wave of distressed properties came by way of foreclosure. Many families who were dependent on two incomes were reduced to one income as the economy and the real estate values contracted. They were followed by investors who over-extended themselves, and finally, those owners who were hanging on by their fingernails lost their battle in 2009 through 2013. That opened the door to a wave of short sales.

All Winchester-Frederick County distressed properties have declined over the past three years, but the most recent news is the best. Of the current pending sales (homes under contract), only 8.7% are distressed properties. This is a place where an interesting phenomena has taken place. Up until this year, foreclosures have always been the primary source of distressed properties, but in June of 2017, short sales are leading that group of Winchester distressed properties at 6.2% of that total. Foreclosures make up the rest at 2.5%. That number is likely to return to higher foreclosures as short sales continue to fall, but both categories are on the decline.

Winchester distressed properties: By the numbers

There are 289 pending sales in the Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market. Of those, there are 15 short sales and 7 foreclosures. If you know how the numbers unfold, you can decide whether this is a time to panic or is it the natural progression of a market on the move.

Of the 15 short sales that are pending, 77% (13) were homes purchased before 2008. Winchester Distressed Properties Are No Longer DistressingBecause of the inflated home values before the recession, those properties would be prime candidates for an under-water mortgage. The highest number of short sales also corresponds to highest home sale prices immediately before the recession (2007). The remaining 13% of Winchester distressed properties (2) were purchased after the recession began.

The reason there so many short sales pending in June 2017 is because of the way short sales progress. Before a home-owner can qualify to do a short sale, she must communicate with her bank that she can no longer afford her home and she needs to do something. The home-owner has a few options. None are very good, but she can allow the home to be foreclosed, or offer a deed in lieu of foreclosure or she can begin a short sale.

Winchester distressed properties: How short sales work

A short sale is only possible if the bank agrees to allow the home-owner to sell the property below the loan balance. When the bank agrees, the home is listed and buyers can make offers. Once a buyer makes an offer, the seller can accept the offer, but that does not mean that the property will ever go to closing. The bank also has to agree to the offer. This is where the third part approval is needed a second time in the sale. It’s also traditional real estate sale practices and timelines disappear.

A bank may take 3 months to 6 months to 18 months to accept the buyer’s offer. Even though the seller has already said, “Yes,” to the buyer’s offer, the bank has to sign off on it. Of the pending short sales, 6 of those properties were listed in 2016. Only 9 were listed this year (2017). Some of those short sales have been under contract for months waiting for “third-party approval.”

The bank will hire local real estate agents to assess the property to make sure the list price is a fair price, and they will compare the buyer offer to that assessment. If there is a large gap, they bank will likely turn it down, and that can come after 90 days, or more, of waiting. A short sale is not a good property for someone who has to move quickly. Once the bank has accepted the buyer’s offer, then the process of a traditional sale begins. Home inspections are scheduled, earnest money deposits are deposited, title searches are conducted and the process begins to move toward closing.

Winchester Distressed Properties Are No Longer DistressingThere are 15 short sales pending in June 2017, but they are more likely a sign that the market is doing a little housekeeping after the recession. If the balance of the homes under short sale contracts had been purchased in 2013 and beyond, I would be concerned. Since they are pre-recession purchases, they’re showing that real estate prices were over-inflated, buyers were over extended and the market was in deep need of a correction.

Another reason not to panic over the June 2017 numbers is that there are 535 active listings on the Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market. Of that number, only 3.8% are distressed properties. That’s a negligible number compared to where the market has been in the past decade. Only .01% of those distressed properties are short sales. The Winchester distressed properties are no longer distressing home-owners, and that’s good news for everyone in the Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market.

 

 

 

Sell your home with Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., and we’ll offer a home warranty to sweeten the deal.

Sell your home with Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., and we’ll offer a home warranty to sweeten the deal.

Home-buyers like perks. Sell your home with Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., and Sell your home with Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., and we'll provide a home warranty to sweeten the deal.we’ll offer a home warranty to sweeten the deal. A home warranty gives the buyer confidence that if anything happens in the first year of ownership, they’re covered. They can extend the warranty after the first year at their expense if they choose.

A home warranty will  provide peace of mind for the new home-owners. Depending on the warranty purchased, a home warranty can cover all major systems, including, plumbing, electrical, HVAC, roof and appliances. Most home-owners fear a big-ticket item breaking down and wiping out their savings or reserve cash. The home warranty can relieve those fears and assure a buyer that you have their back.

Sell your home with Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., and we'll provide a home warranty to sweeten the deal.When you sell your home with Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., we have you covered. Our goal is to make sure your home is listed and sold for the most money in the shortest amount of time. A home warranty will encourage buyers to know they can put away worries about major home repairs. That alone may be the issue that pushes a home-buyer over the decision hurdle.

List and sell your home with Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., and kiss your home goodbye!

Sell your home with Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., and we’ll offer a home warranty to sweeten the deal.

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Winchester-Frederick County, VA Real Estate Market Update – May 2017

Winchester-Frederick County, VA Real Estate Market Update – May 2017

The Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market continued to strengthen in May 2017. Sales are up, prices are up, distressed properties and days on the market are down. Those are all great details for sellers in the Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market.

The current inventory of available homes in the Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market is steady at 531. The local market thrives in the 500-600 available homes range and this market is thriving. The number of pending sales is at 283.

Winchester-Frederick County, VA Real Estate Market by the Numbers

There were 182 home sales in May 2017. That compares to 178 in 2016, 153 in 2015, and Winchester-Frederick County, VA Real Estate Market Update - May 2017154 in 2014. The trend is up and so is the average sales price. The average sales price for May 2017 was $282,698, compared to $274,080 in 2016, but if you go back to 2015, the number increases. The May 2015 sales price average was $242,980. The nearly $40,000 improvement in the May 2017 sales price is good news for current sellers.

Days on the market has stayed steady for the past three years. Currently, the average days on the market is 62. Compared to 2014, that is a 38 day shorter time on the market. Another exciting piece of news for the current real estate Winchester-Frederick County, VA Real Estate Market Update - May 2017market is the number distressed sales in May 2017. There were only 6 distressed sales in May 2017. That is 3.3% of the total sales. That is extremely good news. The market has recovered from the worst days of the recession, and buyers are flooding back into the market. Sellers can list their homes in the current Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market knowing that the trend is on their side.

Winchester-Frederick County, VA Real Estate Market – Strongest Areas

Three areas in the Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market made up 73% of total sales for May 2017. Winchester City (22601), Frederick County (22602) and Stephens City (22655). The 22602 area code made up 54 of total May sales, followed by 22601 at 44 and 22655 at 39. Stephens City made up 22% overall sales for the month of May. Stephens City has become the fastest growing area of the Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market for the past year.

There is a great deal of new construction in the Stephens City market. Businesses are moving into that segment of the market, as well. Stephens City, as a part of the Frederick County real estate market, is giving home buyers and sellers a glimpse into the market. It continues to drive sales, building and remodeling for the community. It’s quick access to a variety of major highways make it a great place commuters, and yet it offers a small town feel with a growing access to the amenities of a larger city.

The Winchester-Frederick County, VA real estate market is healthy and prospering. When you’re ready to sell your home, be sure to call Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., for a free home value analysis. We would be happy to offer one to you, and when you’re ready to buy, we’ve got you covered there too. We are your local real estate sales pros.

5 Tips for Selling Your Winchester – Frederick County, VA Home

5 Tips for Selling Your Winchester – Frederick County, VA Home

Selling your Winchester – Frederick County, VA home does not have to be difficult, and with a few simple tips, you can do it quickly and for top dollar. Selling your home starts well before you place it on the market. It’s a process, that if followed, can pay big dividends. Here are a few tips:

When selling your Winchester – Frederick County, VA home, remove obstacles.

What does that mean? Remove anything that will give the buyer a reason to drop the 5 Tips for Selling Your Winchester - Frederick County, VA Homeprice, low-ball the offer, send an encyclopedia of repair requests or just expect a better deal because of the overall condition of the home.

It would pay to have a home inspection before listing your home, but if you don’t want to do that, walk through the house and look for everything that isn’t working, isn’t right or isn’t appealing. This might need some work, but if you do it, you’ll gain at the closing table.

When selling your Winchester – Frederick County, VA home, forget it’s your home.

Walk into your home as a buyer. What would you ask the seller fix, change or improve? What would turn you away as a buyer? I realize you probably love your home, but if you can look at it as if you were going to buy it, what would you want to be different?

Somethings from the past are no longer popular in the present. For instance, wallpaper was a big 70’s and 80’s home improvement. Today, not so much. A buyer is likely going to remove it all. They are also going to calculate how long they think it’s going to take them to remove it all, and that number will influence their offer. If you have a few months before you list, remove it and paint. You’ll be happy you did.

When selling your Winchester – Frederick County, VA home, minimize before listing.

I recently showed a home that looked like it was staged. It wasn’t. The very smart couple selling that home went through and removed a large part of their belongings, left the best pieces and presented a magazine quality image for all would-be buyers. They received 6 offers in the first 48 hours of listing. It was a stunning home. Did it always look like that? Maybe, but with three little kids, I highly doubt it.

There are probably things sitting around your home that do not enhance the buyer’s experience. You want the buyers to come in and fall in love. You want them to be able to see themselves working in your kitchen, relaxing in your family room and enjoying every inch of the home. Remove unnecessary things that interfere with that dreamy experience.

When selling your Winchester – Frederick County, VA home, remember light and cleanliness are your friends.

5 Tips for Selling Your Winchester - Frederick County, VA Home

A well lighted home is a welcoming home. Make sure your windows allow as much light in as possible. Keep the windows clean. Before a showing, turn on all the lights that are necessary to navigate through the home, and just as a bonus, you may want to turn on a little low music, such as jazz, to go with the buyers through their tour. It’s a very nice touch.

Make sure the house smells clean. This is especially important if you have animals. Don’t use phony deodorizers. Their strong smell can make  odor-sensitive buyers turn around and head out the door. I’ve had buyers get sick from strong deodorizers, and it happens in an instant. I would urge you to not use them at all.

Keep the bathroom and kitchen appliances clean and smelling fresh. Drop a half a lemon in the food disposal and the other half in the kitchen trash can. You may want to spritz a few drops in the fridge as well. A gentle 10 minute cleaning each day (and it doesn’t have to be extensive) can keep you on track with smells and first impressions. Make sure dirty laundry is kept out of sight, as well as, dirty shoes. Keep everything in order. Remember, you’re trying to woo a buyer into falling in love with your home.

When selling your Winchester – Frederick County, VA home, make it easy to see.

I looked up a listing for a client a few years ago, and the listing instructions only allowed showings from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm on Saturday. Needless to say, we never saw it. It languished on the market for a long time and finally sold.

Buyers, like sellers, have different schedules. Some can come during the day, and some cannot. Some can only come on weekends. If you’re serious about selling your home, you’ll want to make it as easy to see as possible. That may mean inconvenience for you, but remember, it’s only temporary.

I always dislike taking a home off of my radar, but when I schedule three or four showings and they are turned down for reasons, such as, “The owner wants to rest this afternoon,” or “The owner doesn’t want to put his dogs away,” or “The owner is tired of people tracking through his house,” you can see how frustrating it can be for a buyer. I’ve heard all of those excuses, and I always remove the home from my show list. The owner is making it nearly impossible to see the home, and the buyers aren’t going to buy it without seeing it.

Make it easy to see, and when you do, leave. More than once in the past year, owners have hung around while I showed a home. They were visibly irritated that my buyers were in the home. Their hovering turned the buyers off and not a single buyer has ever placed an offer on one of those homes. Why? If the seller was that challenging with the showing, how much more might he be in a negotiation? No thanks.

When you’re ready to sell your Winchester – Frederick County, VA home, give Cornerstone Business Group, Inc., a call. We are you local real estate sales pros. We’ll do everything in our power to get you the best deal possible.

If you found this information helpful, you may also want to read these blogs on selling your home in Winchester – Frederick County, VA:

Make your home inviting when you list to sell

Sell your home using the Wow Factor