Sellers: Stats that Prove Why KW Southpark is Charlotte’s Choice

Are you thinking of selling your home?

If you are, you should know why so many Charlotte home sellers choose to work with a Keller Williams Southpark agent or team to sell their home.

Our office is cohesive, growing, and committed to superior results for our clients. It’s no secret! (And if you’ve been thinking about getting into real estate yourself? Give us a call.)

Here are a few stats to prove why KW Southpark is the best choice if you’re looking to sell your home in Charlotte.

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Let’s look at it holistically:

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Ready to sell?
Let us know!

3 Reasons Now is the Time to Sell Your Home in Charlotte

No, really, NOW!

Charlotte is experiencing one of the hottest “seller’s markets” it’s been through in a long time. Buyers are in the market – but there aren’t enough houses to buy! If you’ve been considering selling your home – maybe it’s too big since the kids left home, or maybe you really do want to live in that other neighborhood – now is the time to make the push. Economically, Charlotte sellers are in one of the best positions they’ve been in for years thanks to inventory concerns and rock-bottom mortgage interest rates.

Reason #1: Buyers Have Very Limited Options

Inventory is painfully, woefully low. The inventory of homes for sale in Charlotte is down 17.9% from this time last year for several reasons. Builders can’t build homes fast enough in CLT to keep up with demand, and some individual sellers are trying to “wait out” the market until they think we’ve reached the optimal time to sell. (Hint: Now is that time.)

low inventory charlotte

Reason #2: Sellers Are Getting More of Their Asking Price

Already this year, homes are selling for an average of 5% more than they did in 2015. Sellers are getting about 96.5% of their original listing price, too, which is up nearly 2% over last year. If you’ve been waiting to sell your house until you think the market value is at its highest, now may just be that time.

Reason #3: You Can Time Your Sale

One of the worst parts of selling your home is the unknown. How long will it sit on the market? A month? A year? What about my kids’ school and my job and the holidays? In a seller’s market like Charlotte’s, homes are selling 15% faster in 2016 than they did in 2015, in an average of 78 days (or way less, depending on what neighborhood you’re in.) For sellers, that means more predictability around moving dates, and less dependency on market seasonality.

 

Ready to sell? Why wouldn’t you be! 
Call us TODAY to find out why listing your home with an experienced, knowledgeable real estate team in Charlotte is a great financial decision.

 

Which Home Improvements in Charlotte Give the best ROI?

Home renovations are always a guessing game.

Is this color too dark? Will the contractor show up? And most importantly, will I see this money back in resale? The good news is, some improvements provide a more predictable Return on Investment (ROI) than others, particularly here in the Queen City. What makes sense in, say, Vermont (i.e. heated front steps to melt the ice) would seem like a ridiculous extravagance here in Charlotte.

On the Move Charlotte’s looked at several recent studies and crunched the numbers for your edification. If you’re thinking of making some home improvements, read these stats first.

new sidingMaintenance Updates Get the Biggest Bang for the Buck

Sure, they’re less glamorous than outdoor uplighting, but giving your home a practical upgrade is the best thing you can do for resale value. Siding replacement, for example, gets back about 93% of its cost, and replacing leaking roofs and windows will get you about 80% of the money back. Don’t be fooled – a ROI in this range is excellent. You’ll likely never see 100% or more of the money you spend on renovations, but remember they also make your time living in the home better, too.

 

Charlotte Buyers Love Outdoor Upgrades

According to the national Cost vs. Value report for 2015, buyers in the South Atlantic region will pay more for outdoor upgrades. Functional upgrades like a new steel entry door get 150%+ of their value back in Charlotte, while fun upgrades like a new wooden deck get over 65% here in Charlotte. New garage doors and stone veneer accents also see money back from buyers.

Luxury Upgrades are Terrible Investments (but so much fun!)

We get it. What’s better than an all-new closet system or room-to-room surround sound? Unfortunately for sellers, “luxury” upgrades simply don’t get the money back at resale – but that doesn’t mean they’re not worth doing for the sheer enjoyment of them at the time. Nationally, some of the worst projects for ROI include a master suite addition, an upscale bathroom remodel, and a super-fancy deck. But boy, those all sound pretty cool!

The Charlotte Market Doesn’t Require Improvements

Study the chart below. Notice that in Charlotte, improvements get less across the board when it comes to ROI for sellers. What does this tell us? In a nutshell, that the Charlotte market is so hot right now and inventory’s so low that sellers don’t have any trouble getting top-dollar even if their home’s not perfect. That’s amazing news for sellers! Especially if you’ve been putting off listing your home because you think you’ve got to make a bunch of improvements first. The stats don’t lie: for minimum work and maximum return, now’s the time to sell.

cost vs value 2015

Whether you’ve just finished a massive home improvement project, are wondering whether you need to start one, or just want to move on from your current home and into the next one, call us! It is a seller’s market here in Charlotte and we’re happy to help you set the right price for your home. Afterall…we live here, too!

Why Does Having a Team of Realtors Pay Off? Ask the Witherspoons.

Sometimes two Realtors are better than one.
And sometimes…nothing beats a whole team.

Amy and Brandon Witherspoon were longtime Providence Plantation residents and loved their neighborhood. They lived at 3501 Brushy Lane for years and though they liked their home, they always had their eyes on their ‘dream home’ up the street – 2403 Beaucatcher Lane. In September of last year, fate stepped in.
The Witherspoons sold 3501 Brushy Lane...

The Witherspoons sold 3501 Brushy Lane…

...and moved right into 2403 Beaucatcher Lane!

…and moved right into 2403 Beaucatcher Lane!

When Beaucatcher Lane came on the market, the Witherspoons decided quickly to do what it took to make the move. They contacted the team at On the Move Charlotte (smart move!) and quickly went to work. Through a highly coordinated effort of prep work, research, showings, inspections, and more, the Witherspoons closed on the sale of their old home and closed on the purchase of their new home back-to-back, literally on the same day.

The transaction was a true team effort! Leigh Bryant, with a wealth of experience in the Providence Plantation neighborhood, served as the Witherspoons’ seller’s agent and worked diligently through several marketing channels to get Brushy Lane sold quickly. Mary Sessoms, OTMC’s buyer’s specialist, represented the Witherspoons throughout the complicated process of making an offer, negotiating a contract, and setting up follow-up appointments on what would be their new home. It was no small feat!
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We’re thrilled to say that the Witherspoons love their new home. The smiles on their faces are what make all the hard work worth it!

 

Looking to buy AND sell? Find out why a team of agents is a smart bet by contacting us today. We’d love to chat about your specific situation.

 

 

All the Homes We Helped You Close this Year

One thing we love about this time of year are all the retrospectives of the past twelve months.

We thought it’d be fun to map all the homes the On the Move Charlotte team worked so hard together to close this year. Whether we were helping clients buy their first property, sell their home and move to a new community, or even simultaneously do both, we loved working with all our clients in 2015! It sure is rewarding to look at this map – plotted with all the homes we helped you buy and sell this year – and know our team made a difference in people’s lives.
That’s what it’s really all about, isn’t it?

2015 OTMC Closings Map

Thinking of buying or selling a home in 2016?
You know where to find us!

 

Tips for Ensuring a Favorable Home Appraisal

Appraisals are big business in the real estate industry, referenced by both lenders and homebuyers as a benchmark for a property’s “true” value. Recently, however, as reported by Reuters, homeowners are having a difficult time obtaining what they believe to be a fair estimate for the value of their home from California to Florida.

 

A low appraisal can impact a homeowner in several ways. In many cases, homeowners seeking a refinance are denied when a bank-ordered appraisal comes up short. Other homeowners looking to sell find resistance from the market when they list their homes above its appraised value.

If you’re going to undergo an inspection by an official licensed appraiser in the near future, here are a few suggestions for ensuring you get the very best appraisal value possible for your home.

CHOOSE THE RIGHT APPRAISER

One of the biggest mistakes homeowners make when ordered to get an appraisal is to choose an appraiser who doesn’t have intimate knowledge of their specific neighborhood. If you’re able to choose your own appraiser, select one who’s based no more than 10-miles away from your home and preferably living in your community. If the bank is selecting the appraiser specifically request they send a local licensee.

KEEP GOOD RECORDS

Before the appraiser ever arrives at your home, take some time to pull records concerning every upgrade or renovation you’ve made to the house. Include receipts from home improvement stores and estimates for work done on the house and before-and-after pictures, if possible. It’s also smart to reference local comparables in the neighborhood you think the appraiser should be made aware of. Ask your real estate broker to help identify three solid comps near your home and be sure they find the right hands.

CLEAN UP AND BE CONFIDENT

Just like homebuyers, appraisers are human beings and often have a hard time seeing past a home that’s cluttered, dirty, or overgrown. Present your home to an appraiser the same way you would to the open market to get the best results. Never follow the appraiser around while they’re in your home unless specifically requested – appraisers say not being allowed space to properly inspect the home is a surefire sign the owner has something to hide.

GET YOUR OWN APPRAISAL

If you’re in a situation like as a refinance where you’re forced to work with an appraiser not of your choosing, shell out a few hundred dollars and get an appraisal of your own. You’ll likely have more control over the selected licensee and can lobby against a bad appraisal with a higher one if necessary.

Don’t be afraid to get directly involved in your home appraisal. Many homeowners don’t understand that an appraisal happens with them, not to them, and may underestimate the impact pointed questions and suggestions can have on the appraisal outcome.

If you’re looking for a qualified appraiser in your area or just have questions about whether or not you need a home appraisal, call Leigh Bryant’s team at Keller Williams Southpark to speak about your options.

4 Things to Know About Selling Your Charlotte Home in Winter

winter houseIn the Winter…really?

Yes, really! There’s a pervasive myth in real estate that Spring is the best time to sell your home. Of course, springtime has its charms: the weather, the leaves, the birds chirping, etc. But for many people the decision to sell isn’t on a flexible time frame, so if you need to sell in the wintertime there are plenty of reasons not to fret. Your Charlotte house CAN and WILL sell in the winter if you set yourself up for success! Step one is, of course, calling On the Move Charlotte to talk about everything from pricing to staging, but you knew that already…

If you’re considering listing your Charlotte home this cold-weather season, read on.

The Stats Support Winter Sales

Contrary to popular belief, homes may actually sell faster in winter than they do in warm weather! Why is this? Inventory is traditionally lower in wintertime and in Charlotte, inventory’s already at historic lows to boot. Some of the big real estate sites recently released statistics regarding cold weather sales and the results are staggering. Redfin found that listing in December, January, or February gave you the best chance of getting an above-ask offer, and listing in February gave you the best chance all year of selling within 90 days. You can’t argue with data.

The Right Listing Price is Critical

This lesson always holds true, but no more so than in winter. The good news is that fewer home shoppers mean more serious, focused buyers. The downside is that if you test the market and list high, you may have a smaller pool of buyers to turn off before you settle on the correct listing price. When spring rolls around and more homes hit the market your once-overpriced home will look stale by comparison, so talk to your Charlotte real estate agent about how to determine the right listing price for your home in winter.

It’s All About Presentation

fireplaceDon’t be scared by wet, gray weather! In the wintertime you’ve got a great opportunity to create a cozy oasis inside your home regardless of the weather outside. Particularly if your house doesn’t get great natural light, use the weather to your advantage. Light a fire, turn on ambient lights, and be sure the driveway and walkways are clear and inviting. If you’re selling around the holidays, be mindful of decorations and pare down your usual trimmings so you won’t create a cluttered effect. And best of all? Some Charlotte homeowners near Uptown find themselves with a peek-a-boo view once the leaves fall off the trees…play that feature up in your listing!

Be a Special Snowflake

One of the inarguable benefits of listing your home in the wintertime is more attention. Shoppers are more likely to pay close attention to the market and open house dates because they know inventory’s limited. Your agents will likely have less listings, too, meaning you’ll get treated to extra time and marketing attention. Listing your home in cold weather creates a sense of urgency in buyers who know there are dozens of others looking at your property simultaneously – use that kind of focus to your advantage.

 

Michelle picture 2015

Michelle Duyck, Listing Specialist

 

The key to selling successfully in winter? Work with a trusted Charlotte real estate agent! Our team specializes in Charlotte area listings and we’ll help you nail down the right price, market your property, and get it sold for a price you’re happy with. Call us today to talk shop.

 

Where Will Home Prices be in 5 Years?

That’s a big question, huh?

It’s hard enough to predict the value of a home even six months from now, much less several years. But quarterly, consulting firm Pulsenomics surveys over 100 researchers, professionals, and economists to get a handle on where the real estate market’s heading. And the good news is…the news is good!

The big data points are:

  • Cumulative home appreciation is expected to be 18.1% (!!!) by 2019
  • Home prices are up year-over-year in the Southeast by 6.12%
  • Even bear-ish minds speculate cumulative appreciation will be over 10% in the next five years

So, what does all this mean? It means smart investors are ready to buy homes NOW. Values aren’t going down any time soon and with inventory short and prices inching towards pre-bubble rates, the sooner buyers dig in, the better.

Take a look at this graph and think about what it means for your home search.

Pulsenomics graph 2015

 

Looking to buy? Now is the time. Hoping to sell? Talk to us about whether it’s smarter to take advantage of the current seller’s market or if your value could go even higher by holding for a while.

We’re ready to chat.

Business Booming? Agent Safety Tips to Remember

As brokers it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of the  busy season.

We’re as guilty as anyone of letting agent safety slip when calls start coming in left and right and we’ve got tours lined up back-to-back. Summer, especially, is an easy time to let your guard down and accidentally open yourself up to risks!

Here’s a quick reminder for all you agents (and for sale by owner folks!) to stay safe using some of these easy to remember tips.

open house1. Never Lead

We’ve all been there. The master bath is to die for and just wait until you see this closet space! But it’s always safest to let the interested buyers/sellers lead the way, particularly in an unfamiliar property. Not only does it ensure we’ve never got our backs turned, it keeps the client up front and excited to lead the tour!

2. Check for Service

Before your open house or property tour starts, check to ensure you’ve got adequate cell service before relying on your phone as a lifeline. Not only do you need service, you need a decent charge so always keep a car charger and a backup battery on you! Remember that your phone’s only useful if you have it handy – and never rely on a tool you’re unfamiliar with (like pepper spray) to keep you safe, either.

3. Don’t Block Yourself In

If you end up in a situation that makes you uncomfortable at a showing or open you’re going to want an easy exit. Don’t allow your car to get blocked in when parking in a driveway, and try to back in if you can for easy egress. Parking on the street may make it easier to get in and out, too.

cell phone4. Host Opens Near an Exit

As we always say, encourage your clients to think ahead when holding an open house (hiding their valuables, finding somewhere else for the dog, etc.) so you don’t have to monitor the back recesses of their home. Staying near an exit at an open house not only keeps you safer, it allows you as the broker to keep tabs on who’s coming and going from their home.

5. Safety in Numbers

If you’re ever unsure about your safety, invite another agent to come along. If you’re holding an open house, having a lender on-site is a good way to get safety in numbers while also adding value for potential buyers! Safety in numbers is a real thing and it’s always more fun to have someone else along for the ride.

 

Being in real estate is very safe. Like any profession, ours has its risks but most of them can be mitigated by being vigilant and thinking ahead! We’re all about safety – for our kids, our clients, and our colleagues.

Now get out there and enjoy this hot selling/buying season in Charlotte!