After much deliberation and consideration, we have compiled our beneficiaries for Charity of the Month comprised of 6 local non-profit businesses for the next twelve months! In order to be more effective and impactful with each of the chosen recipients, we have also decided to move to a two month timeframe in order to include a greater amount donated, but also to provide more time to focus on getting to know our chosen charity.
We are excited to announce that Tilly at F.O.T.A.S. (Friends of the Animal Shelter) received the first check reflecting two months of our 10% gross sales donation. Here’s our post on Instagram, check it out and like us here. We are currently partnering with Rogue Valley Mentoring for the months of July/August and coming soon is Scienceworks for the months of Sept/Oct. If you aren’t already familiar with these fantastic community resources, please take a minute to check them out here, and if you are so inclined and able, join us in donating: Rogue Valley Mentoring and Scienceworks
So you are thinking you want a new house, but you have to sell your place first. What can you do?
First, give up on getting a great deal. I’m sorry to be so blunt, but a contingent offer is a sure fire way to NOT get a good deal. Why you might ask?
Because good deals just don’t last on the market for very long. There are multiple buyers out there competing against each other at any given time. While not all places get multiple offers, it is only because they are not priced below the market.
Houses priced considerably below the market value will almost ALWAYS get multiple offers. And if you are a seller, would you rather take an offer contingent upon someone selling their house, or not. The contingent offer will pretty much always lose. The amount one would have to offer over asking price would take the good deal…and make it not a good deal anymore. And there is still no guarantee that a seller would accept it.
Best way to get a contingent offer accepted is to look for a house that has been on the market for a LONG time. Something that is definitely priced above the market, and put an offer on that one. The seller might be motivated enough to get their price that they are willing to take the gamble.
But again…there goes the great deal.
There are ways to get contingent offers accepted….even when competing. Look for part 2 of this post.
Very interesting stats just came out about available homes on the market per buyer. Which could speak to what will be happening in 2019. Whether it is attributed to the general economy, or the fallout of 2 straight seasons of smoke in the valley remains to be seen. It is most likely a combination of both.
Ashland has seen a 30% increase in the total available homes on the market, and a 20% decrease in the number of buyers over the year. This has resulted in a jump in the available homes per buyer from 2.6 a year ago, to 11.7 at the end of January 2019.
Nine of the reports MLS areas saw an increase in the available homes per buyer, while 4 areas saw a decrease. Overall across Jackson County there has be a 50% increase in the number of homes available per buyer over last year. The current numbers show a fairly stable market. So at this time it is neither a buyers’ or a sellers’ market. But if the trend continues, we could be headed into a buyers’ market.
The 6th month trend of sales price to original listing price has been decreasing. This will be seen by an increase in the number of price reductions that are happening in the market. We are seeing that pricing homes trying to lead an appreciating market is no longer a workable strategy.
At this time there has not been a noticeable decline in average sales prices. But we are also keeping our eye out for that.
On the up side, there has been a small increase in the number of pending sales. And a decrease in the number of days on the market.
2019 will prove to be an interesting year.
I have been showing houses for years, and have shown hundreds of people thousands of house. And in that time, I have learned and observed many things.
There are a number of things a seller can do to make their house show better, and just as many they can do to make it show worse.
In my opinion, the worst thing a seller can do is be home during a showing. I have seen over and over sellers getting in their own way with all the best of intentions. I get it too. Who knows more about the house than the seller. Who better can point out the little details that make this home special. It is a huge investment for the seller, and they are definitely invested in the process. It is just important to know when the best thing they can do is to step out for a walk at just the right moment.
Here’s the biggest reason why. Buyer’s are uncomfortable when the seller’s are there. They already feel a little weird about walking through someone else’s house, opening their cupboards, flushing their toilets, etc…. So when the seller is lurking, 95 times out of 100, they will try to get out of the house as fast as possible without being rude. And the other 5 times, they feel overly trapped by politeness listening to the seller regale stories of how the grandkids used to play in the creek, etc… But even when they make the connection with the seller, the house gets blurred in the background. And that isn’t what a seller truly wants. Unless they have listed the house as a ploy to make new friends. lol
I understand that some houses are complicated. Unique features that might be missed by a prospective buyer. Or complicated rural property with questions about property boundaries, well production, etc… Instances like those, I have seen how having the seller’s around is beneficial. ON THE 2ND SHOWING. Buyer’s need to be able to feel themselves in a place, and that is a personal space equation most of the time. And if they don’t have a chance to do that during their 1st impression, they won’t be back for a 2nd one.
A good buyer’s agent knows how to give the buyer’s the appropriate amount of space, while pointing out things that might be less than obvious. (And of course keeping track of the seller’s personal property). I personally know a buyer is serious about a house when they sit down on the couch and view the home from there. This will NEVER happen when the seller is home.
Worse yet, I’ve actually heard stories of sellers being at open houses, or showings, pretending to be other buyers of the home. They walk through talking the place up…what a great value it is…and how they are going to try to go put an offer in on it right away. Thank goodness I don’t think this has ever happened to me. And I know my sellers would never do this.
I believe this is part of the reason I have been so successful over the years. I try to never rush anyone. These are huge decisions, and everybody has their own pace at going through them. I’ve seen people make the decision in 5 minutes, and others that take months.
So please…if you are selling your home..give the buyer and their broker the courtesy of being able to take their time, and progress at their pace. Even if you are the kind of person who wishes the seller was their to hear their stories, and answer their questions, most buyers aren’t. Go with the odds.
Every once in a while, I fall down a statistical rabbit hole. And today was one of those days.
I had another agent who was trying to figure out how to explain to their client about why the low offer they wanted to submit was not really a good use of anyone’s time. As a buyer’s agent, I am always wanting to get the best deal I can for my clients…and will negotiate my tuckus off to do the best I can for them.
However, after years of experience and a knowledge of statistics, I know that some offers are just too low to even get a response. So the buyer wastes time, their agent wastes time, the seller’s agent wastes time, and the seller is insulted and has their time wasted.
So today I ran some actual statistical probabilities on what the chances are a low offer will be accepted. Using mean, standard deviation, T-tables and the internets….this was my conclusion. Of course this can change as the market changes…so this is for Josephine County for July of 2018. Sample size of 119 sales…so significant.
Sellers mindset in our market is they have to decide to lower the price, they don’t accept low offers.
So the average sales price to list price was 96.98%. However the sales price to original list price was 94.61%.
There is a 33% chance that an offer at 96.98% will be accepted, but only a 9% chance that an offer of 94.61% would be accepted. Even though that is the average overall from the original listing price.
So deeper down the hole. Here are the probabilities.
At 92% of asking price the odds of acceptance are 4.5%
At 87% of asking price the odds of acceptance are .27%
at 82% of asking price the odds of acceptance are .006%
at 78% of asking price the odds of acceptance are .0001%
So when looking to make an offer anywhere below 90% of asking price, the odds are so long!!!!!
As I council my clients….I want them to know that it isn’t me who wants them to pay more for the house. The best deal I can get them is what I want. But when I say an offer is too low to be considered, I now have some statistical background and facts to back that up.
Thanks for falling down my rabbit hole if you got this far.
Used to be that when one couldn’t afford Ashland, that they went to Talent…so they were close to Ashland. While it is cheaper, it is hard to find a house there. And anymore, it just isn’t that much cheaper.
Looking at statistics in Talent, Oregon. There are currently 13 houses for sale with a median asking price of $335,000. 19 houses are under contract with a median price of $298,500. And in the last year, 76 houses have sold with a median sales price of $289,000.
My interpretation of those number is a market that is rapidly appreciating. Or that sellers are feeling the market is hot, and testing the prices. When you have a day on market of less than one month, and only 2 months worth of housing stock available, it is the logical conclusion to see what the market will really bear.
Those ratios show a market that is short on listings.
Of the 13 houses on the market, over half of them have been on less than a month. So it is a little early to tell if the sellers will be getting their increased asking prices or not.
This is just one of the many micro-economic areas in the Rogue Valley.
I specialize in analyzing property values.
So right now if you are looking to sell a home, if it is priced right we should be able to sell it pretty quickly for a fair market price.
Anywhere in Jackson County, send me your address and I will get back to you and help you determine the value of your home.
When organized chaos just becomes chaos!
Here are some simple ideas for a clutter free life…
There’s a reason real estate agents always advise home sellers to remove all clutter when selling their homes: The difference is remarkable. The clutter-free home often looks like a new one entirely, and homeowners even wonder how their home could look that good. You don’t have to wait to sell your home to make it look better. Plus, clutter can physically and mentally stress us out. By breaking your decluttering down into five-minute sessions, you can slowly conquer your clutter.
The 501c3 Files
‘Tis the Gift to Be…Playing Music from The Ashland Sneak Preview
By Sophia and Adam Bogle
I was walking in Lithia Park one beautiful summer day when I came across about a dozen kids all holding fiddles! They were (mostly) paying attention to a grown up with another fiddle who was obviously giving them a lesson. Then they all lifted their bows together and began to play a song! Ok, it would have made a better story maybe if they had played something amazing and perfect, but no, it wasn’t perfect. However, it was lively and joyful and the kids were obviously having a good time. I spent a long moment wishing I were ten years old again so I could be a part of that class. Apparently I had come across the Creekside Strings Summer Fiddle Camp.
Actually, I only found out what it was called after I sat down with the Director of Modern Roots Foundation (MRF), Dee Fretwell. Dee lives up in the Green Springs and we met at the GreenSprings Inn over a fantastic breakfast. I was there to find out more about MRF and Dee had all the answers for me including one I did not expect. When I first heard about this charity I thought that since there was music being taught that there must be some sort of recital fundraiser to attend, so I was actually a bit shocked when she said there are no recitals required of them. She explained that while performing is definitely a part of musicianship, that they didn’t want to put pressure on the kids to focus on that. They want the kids to just have their own relationship with the music. Wow. That just speaks to the heart of why this is such an important and honorable program. I found this great quote by Dee on the MRF Website:
“One of the most magical things I’ve ever seen is the sparkle in children’s eyes when they realize they’ve just made music. You see, music explains what words cannot, and children need to be heard.”
So you see, MRF is serving a bigger purpose than just making sure there are enough banjo players in the world. They are gifting children with the ability to make their own magic for themselves.
The camp I ran into is just one part of the services offered by the Modern Roots Foundation (MRF). They also offer workshops and private lessons for a number of instruments including banjo, acoustic guitar (electric upon request), upright bass (electric upon request), ukulele, mandolin and of course, the violin/fiddle (These are the same instrument in case you were wondering… I know I was wondering.) They have instructors in Ashland, Talent, Phoenix and Medford so far. Here is a list of their workshops and camps:
- Wintergrass Youth Academy (Washington, every February)
- West Coast Country Music Festival Youth Workshops (as offered)
- Rogue Roots and Strings Spring Break Music Camp (every Spring Break)
- Creekside Strings Summer Fiddle Camp (Rogue Valley Only, every summer)
The name Modern Roots is based on the musical genre called American Roots. The music includes several genres we are all familiar with: folk, country, bluegrass, the blues and others. Basically, we are not talking classical music here. The word Modern in their title makes it clear that this is not about being stuck in the past though. Fresh music!
Every year MRF offers a limited number of scholarships for kids ages 8 -18 who have the desire to play a musical instrument but would otherwise not have the opportunity to take music lessons. MRF is dedicated to helping kids have access to musical instruments and instruction, regardless of their family’s economic status. They started in 2013 and serve all of Southern Oregon helping kids to rent instruments, take lessons and attend music camps.
One of the fun things about MRF is that while you can donate in all the usual ways, like one time donations or sponsoring a child’s tuition, you can also donate a used musical instrument which will help fund the music scholarships! For more information go to ModernRootsFoundation.org or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
While we are on the subject of resolutions, if you are resolved (see what I did there?) to make your home a more green and sustainable one, there’s no better time to incorporate energy-saving measures than during the cold months. Here are five simple things you can do to make your house more efficient…
#1 Install a Programmable Thermostat
The advice is usually to turn down the temperature during the winter, but wouldn’t it be nice to wake up to a warm house?Programmable thermostats let you pre-set temperatures and schedule when the furnace goes on and off. If you use them correctly you could see up to $180 in savings each year. More sophisticated devices like the Nest learn your daily routine an automatically adjust temperatures based on your habits. We got a NEST at our house a couple of years ago. I like it, even though it turns the heat on about 30 minutes too early in the morning for me. It wants the house to be of a comfortable temperature for when I get out of bed, but makes the room too warm to sleep in. Maybe some day I’ll figure out how to fix that.#2 Install Ceiling Fans
Fans move cool and hot air around your living space, allowing you to turn the temperature down in winter and raise it during summer. During the wintertime, you can reverse the fan’s direction to clockwise to keep the warm air moving down. Plus you can hang your clothes on them for a winter air dry. (Okay…that was a joke)
#3 Eliminate Air Leaks
Use a door draft stopper and caulk and weatherstrip doors and windows to cut down on the cold air coming in. I actually have the worst door ever for this. I’ve got to get someone out to fix it. We took the weatherstripping off when we had our house painted. However, the weatherstrip was installed wrong because the door jam need to be completely re-done. I just talked to a contractor today get him on the schedule to come fix that.
#4 Use Power Strips
Did you know that many of your appliances use electricity whether they are on or not?Standby power is electricity that’s being used by things like TVs, computers, appliances, and phone chargers, even when the devices are in stand-by mode or even off.
Plug electronics, chargers, and appliances into power strips and switch them off when you’re not using the devices. You could save up to $200 per year! Or you can buy outlets with a remote control that allows you to turn the whole outlet off.
#5 Change Your HVAC Filter
If you change your filters monthly, you may lower your energy bills by 5 to 15 percent. Plus stop that annoying wheezing sound they make when they get dirty.
Simply put, dirty, clogged filters make the HVAC system work harder.
The savings can be substantial if you keep your filters clean as the average household spends approximately $2,200 on heating and cooling costs every year. Getting the HVAC system regular yearly maintenance is also beneficial.