Why 2018 is the Year to Sell Your Home: An Economic Overview

Posted on June 12, 2018 by Admin

Considering selling your home or real estate investment? Projected economic and job growth coupled with an anticipated rise in interest rates (toward the end of this year and into the future) means that this spring and summer is the perfect time to sell your home. High demand and low housing inventory has made the first half of 2018 a seller’s market in the majority of the top housing markets in the United States.

This is a rare opportunity for sellers— you may get more than your asking price. Buyers are eager to close before the anticipated rise in mortgage payments; and the market is competitive, leading to bidding wars that are raising sales to well above listing prices, increasing your profits.

OUR ECONOMY: According to real estate economists, the economy will continue to grow over the course of the next 3 years, with 2.8% projected growth in 2018. Although the forecast is looking good for long-term growth, the anticipated surge may slow to 2% by 2020.

INVESTMENT ACTIVITY AND HOME PRICES: An economic rise featuring continuous job growth is expected to generate a boost in investment activity, making 2018 a perfect time to sell. “It appears that the forecast for strong economic growth may lead to higher levels of investment activity. According to, survey respondents increased their expectations for transaction volumes for 2018 and 2019 (up $23 billion in 2018 and up $11 billion in 2019).” Alongside the increased investment activity, we will likely see a continuous rise in prices of homes over the course of 2018. Home prices will continue to surge until 2020, but at a decreased pace (5% in 2018 and 2.3% in 2020).

INFLATION AND INTEREST RATES: There is some anticipation that inflation rates will be on the rise until 2020 (resulting from the GDP growth rate). As inflation progresses, interest rates also increase leading to higher mortgage payments. We have already begun to witness the widespread anxiety that stemmed from an initial increase in interest rates— the stock market swing in early 2018.

So what does this mean if you are selling your home or property?  

Buyers will likely feel a growing sense of urgency to invest now, before rates surge even higher. Lingering fear from the housing collapse a decade ago may prevent potential buyers from investing as they see interest rates continue to climb. Although the fear is understandable, the average mortgage payment (adjusted for inflation) still falls approximately 36% below what we were paying back in 2006. Nonetheless, we may see some buyers leaving the market.

There is low housing inventory and buyers are ready to find their homes… But don’t wait too long, because your perfect buyers may decide to wait out this next cycle of economic uncertainty and the advantageous bidding wars that can escalate your returns $50k-300k will disappear with them.

Contact me at 707.322.2000 for information about selling your home in Northern California.

*Economic data taken from the most recent ULI Real Estate Economic Forecast


Our Top 5 Home Improvements That Increase Value Quickly Without Breaking the Bank

Posted on May 22, 2018 by Admin

If you’re thinking of selling your home or real estate investment, it can be hard to know how to invest in your home to increase its value. Many people spend up to a year prepping their home for a sale. When the economy is peaking in a seller’s market, however, keeping updates and innovations simple and directed can help minimize the time needed to prep a home and save thousands (if not hundreds of thousands) in the long run. After all, you don’t want to miss out on the ideal time for putting your home on the market. Discover our top recommendations for making your home more desirable and increasing the value quickly – without breaking the bank.

Here are 5 simple and easy tips for getting the most out of your investment:

1. Start Small

Make sure that you are keeping up on home maintenance. Potential buyers may be turned away by something as small as dirty grout or chipped paint. Fixing these relatively minor issues can be simple, taking just a little elbow grease or a small investment, and they can yield a large result. Some projects that we suggest are: fresh paint, updated fixtures, switching fluorescent lights to LED, removing/cleaning old carpet, and replacing old toilets.

2. Go Green

Today’s buyers value energy efficiency and green-living, so make sure your home uses energy wisely. Invest in small projects, such as installing on-demand water heating. Water heating can account for as much as 16% of the energy costs. That said, heating the rest of your home can use more than twice as much energy as heating your water, so installing a smart thermostat can also entice potential buyers as well as lead to significant savings on utility bills. And, last but not least, upgrading from single-pane to double-pane windows can make a huge difference, but may take more time or money than you want to spend.

3. Upgrade the Kitchen

According to Consumer Reports, a “modern/updated kitchen” was the #1 desirable feature in a home for millenials. Again, don’t go overboard here – for only a few thousand dollars, you can invest in new appliances, fixtures and lighting. Also, adding a fresh coat of paint to walls and cabinets will freshen the look, and make the space feel new. If your kitchen is in need of a deeper remodel, new counters can make the difference you are seeking. Our choice material is quartz with an undermount sink – it looks modern and is easy to maintain.

4. Improve the Bathroom

Bathroom improvements should follow the same principles as kitchen improvements. Replace old plumbing with new and matching fixtures. Coordinate the plumbing with any towel bars and toilet paper holders to create a cohesive look. Make sure to deeply clean tile and other hard surfaces – and consider reglazing any chipped or worn basins and tubs.

5. Curb Appeal

First impressions count! Now’s the time to repaint the house if it hasn’t been done in the last ten years, or if there is any damage to the existing paint. Consider replacing the front door – it is the focal point of a home’s exterior. Make sure that landscaping is easy to maintain. If you don’t have an irrigation system, now’s the time to install one. If you have the space for it, highlight any outdoor living space by adding some nice chairs and an outdoor rug to a deck. You can spruce up the space with a fire ring on your patio and a well-maintained yard.

The Best Time to Sell Your Home in California

Posted on May 14, 2018 by Admin

The Next Three Months:  Best Time to Sell Your Home in California

  • Nationwide, May is the best month to sell a home for more than its value, with sellers receiving average premiums of 5.9 percent between 2011 and 2017.
  • In 85 percent of California markets, May, June, and July are the top months to sell a home.
  • April and May are the best months for sellers in the Bay Area, while Southern California sellers have the greatest chances of receiving premiums in June.

May is the best month to sell a home, according to a new ATTOM Data Solutions analysis of 14.7 million home sales from 2011 to 2017, which shows that homeowners selling in May realized the biggest premiums above estimated market value — 5.9 percent on average — of any month.

The best day of the year to sell a home is June 28, with an average seller premium of 9.1 percent, according to the analysis.

The best month to sell varied from market to market, with warmer weather markets such as Miami (January) and Phoenix (November) bucking the national trend, according to the analysis. Take a look at the map below to find out the best month for selling a home in your local market.

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