Archive for August, 2010
This photo makes me smile. Who knew cooking was such serious business? What I’m really curious about is the round contraption on the right side of the photo. I’m guessing it’s a washing machine, but then, what’s it doing in a cooking class? Perhaps it was really a home-ec class? Remember those! I do. I’m dating myself.
Hey- today is the first day of class for BCC students. Go Barons!
Some good BCC trivia:
Motto: Learn, Think, Serve, Be Responsible
Mascot: The Battlin’ Baron
School Colors: Blue and Gold
School Newspaper: The Tattler
Students: @ 1,800
Did you know that a few environmentally friendly property improvements can save you money? Yup. Right here in Montgomery County, Maryland. Add a rain barrel, remove some paving, or put on a green roof, and homeowners can save up to $1,200. Organizations (including religious groups, private schools & businesses) are elegible for up to $5,000.
To take advantage of the various rebate programs (quick! before the money runs out), check out RainScapes Rewards Rebate Program for details.
If you really want to get the low down on DC area real estate, read the newly released MRIS Q2 2010 Trends in Housing Report. In it you will find all sorts of graphs and data outlining the relative health of the DC/VA/Baltimore region as compared to the rest of the nation. It’s not as depressing as the recent doom and gloom in the papers.
Mortgage money is easing up, but it can still be tough to come by. These days a bunch of would-be-purchasers are trying out home sale contingencies. A home sale contingency allows a buyer to move forward on the purchase of a new home, but only if they are able to sell their current place.
Here’s how it works in the local DC market: The buyer promises to buy the new house as long as his/her own home sells within a specified amount of time (let’s say 60 days) for a listing price not to exceed “x” dollars. If their home is not yet on the market, they have to promise to place it on the market within 3 days (negotiable) of ratification. The seller of the new house can continue to market their property and accept back up offers – this is known as a “kick-out”. Should another offer come in Read the rest of this entry »
1. Pricing. The most important component to selling your home is proper pricing. Just because your neighbor’s house sold 2 years ago for X amount, but yours is a lot nicer, doesn’t mean that your home should automatically sell for more. Not in 2010. In a changing market, it can be pretty difficult to nail down an appropriate range. Many for-sale-by-owner (FSBO’s) homes are priced on the basis of hearsay and eventually take less, since the buyer is often in a better position to negotiate. I base my pricing on recent comparable sales, my neighborhood knowledge, the condition of your house and the current state of the market. Period. Furthermore, I bring an office full of agents by to help zero in on an appropriate price, representing hundreds of combined years selling real estate. Do you have the market data to justify your price?
2. Do-it-Yourself firms aren’t so hot. You’ve got one shot at making a good first impression. DIY firms might deliver when it comes to getting your house on the internet, but when buyers take a look at those depressing and washed out photos on the web, are you really convincing them to take a look at your house? My job entails not only marketing your home to it’s fullest potential, but presenting you with market comparables and pricing advice, staging, professional photography, web presentation, print advertising, contract expertise, and some. Most DIY firms get your listing on the internet, and that’s about it.
3. Commissions. Most qualified buyers turn to an agent to help them with the logistics of buying a home. These agents won’t show your home if you’re not Read the rest of this entry »
Sometimes when I talk about real estate, you might hear me say “we have a 4.5 month of supply of homes”, which might leave you scratching your head. Simply put, I’m referring to the absorption rate, or the calculation of how long it will take for all the homes currently on the market to sell at the present rate of sales. It is not an exact science. But it does help to predict market trends. For all of you math geeks, here’s how it’s done. Find the number of listings currently on the market. Determine how many listings sold last month. Multiply that number by 12 (months). Divide that number by the current number of listings, and that’ll give you the number of units that would sell each week. Then divide the number of units that should sell each week by the current inventory… and voila: You’ve found your absorption rate.
There are a bunch of zip codes that I track on a regular basis. The following absorption rates were calculated on August 19, 2010:
20814 (downtown Bethesda) 2.2 months (20814 July Market Trends)
20815 (Chevy Chase, MD) Read the rest of this entry »
Hey, I just found out about this, and I think you might like it. Turns out that during gardening season (roughly April-October) you can bring plant samples, insects, your gardening puzzles and all sorts of questions to one of 10 locations below and get some answers for free:
- Bethesda: Davis Library, 6400 Democracy Blvd., April – Sept., Sat. 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
- Bethesda: FRESHFARM Market. Norfolk Ave., between Fairmont Ave.. & St. Elmo Ave., July – Oct., 3rd Sat. of each month, 10 a.m.-1p.m.
- Chevy Chase: Audubon Naturalist Society, 8940 Jones Mill Rd., April – Sept., Sat., 10 a.m.-noon.
- Derwood: Montgomery County Extension Office, 18410 Muncaster Rd., Mar – Nov., M-F, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
- Gaithersburg: Quince Orchard Library, 15831 Quince Orchard Rd., May – Sept., Sat,.10 a.m.-1p.m.
- Germantown: Germantown Library, 19840 Century Blvd., May – Sept., Wed., 6:30-8:30 p.m.
- Read the rest of this entry »
While the average price in our area was at or above the previous year’s level for the past 8 months, the dollar volume of sales was down for the first time in 14 months. Lawrence Yun, the chief economist for the National Association of Realtors said NAR indicators predicted that a slowdown in sales was expected after the surge created by the April 30th deadline for the First Time Homebuyers Tax Credit. It is a little unusual for our area to wait until July to experience such a slowdown, but the record heat may also have been a factor. Also, the slower sales of more expensive properties- possibly due to the stock market gyrations and ensuing lack of consumer confidence- was undoubtedly influential in reducing the total sales volume.
Meanwhile, prices in the area were up 10.6% over last July, and the inventory was only slightly higher at a 4.8 months supply. With interest rates at their lowest point in over 40 years, and prices still at relatively low numbers, sales this fall should exceed last years numbers.
*Statistics are taken from the Metropolitan Regional Information System for three areas: Washington, D.C.; Montgomery County, Maryland; and Fairfax County, Arlington, Alexandria and Falls Church in Virginia.
Went to the Nationals game today. I don’t get to the games too often, but it’s always a good time. One thing that really makes it a fun ballpark is the food. A bunch of local outlets have stands: Ben’s Chili Bowl, Five-Guys, Gifford’s Ice Cream, and the no-name (rather, I don’t know it) Kosher Falafel place, right behind the escalator (which takes you to Five-Guys). Love those falafels. Another fun thing is the team mascot, Screech (as in screeching eagle- our Nat’l bird). He and the Geico frog were hanging out together during the 5th inning.
On our way back to to the parking lot, my eagle-eyed son noticed this praying mantis perched on an office building. Not too many trees around Nat’s Park. Not sure what he/she/(do they have a sex?) was doing there. Hoping to catch the game, no doubt.
I am not the #3 Agent at Long and Foster nation wide. Nor am I the top dog at my office. I’m a mom, a wife, a friend, occasionally cranky and often distracted. Oh, and I’m a real estate agent.
That’s not to say I don’t take my job seriously. I do indeed. And if I do say so myself, I’m a pretty good agent. But I don’t follow all of the hyped up rules governing sales. Like…
- Push the Sale. Some agents out there are so good at wrapping things up quickly and pushing their people to buy, buy, buy. Oh, and they are pretty good at getting their clients to spend top dollar. Maybe I’m crazy, but if somebody isn’t convinced that the house is for them, I’m not about to push. If there are multiple offers out there, I’ll let them know that they need to hop and hop fast, but the decision is up to the buyer. And if a buyer gives me a big price range, I’ll show them houses in that range, not just the top end. Sorry, I’m not much of a “closer”.
- Be the expert. If you don’t know something, tell ‘em you do, and run out and learn it fast. Hmmm. This one could get me in a lot of trouble. Real Estate is complex, particularly when it comes to the paperwork. In DC/MD we have contracts that number around 50+ pages. I like to think that I know my way around the paperwork pretty well, but it is constantly changing and evolving. If I get tripped up, I’ll let you know, and then find the answer.
- Never-ever refer business to your competitors. Hey- I’m licensed in Maryland. Technically I can sell you property anywhere in the state. But I won’t. If you’re looking for a beach house, I’ll refer you to an agent who lives in the area and knows what they are talking about. Hell, I won’t even sell you real estate in Virginia. A bunch of my colleagues know Virginia well. Me- I get lost. Referral!
- Take the listing at any price. If you think your house is worth $900,000 when the comps suggest $680,000, we’re probably not going to work together. There are some agents out there who will take listings at inflated prices figuring they can always Read the rest of this entry »
Cell 301.758.4894 Office 202.364.1700
Evers & Company Real Estate, Inc. 4400 Jenifer St. NW Chevy Chase, DC 20015
- May 2013 (4)
- April 2013 (5)
- March 2013 (8)
- February 2013 (8)
- January 2013 (12)
- December 2012 (7)
- November 2012 (9)
- October 2012 (11)
- September 2012 (9)
- August 2012 (10)
- July 2012 (10)
- June 2012 (9)
- May 2012 (10)
- April 2012 (10)
- March 2012 (11)
- February 2012 (12)
- January 2012 (11)
- December 2011 (11)
- November 2011 (14)
- October 2011 (15)
- September 2011 (13)
- August 2011 (16)
- July 2011 (12)
- June 2011 (12)
- May 2011 (15)
- April 2011 (14)
- March 2011 (18)
- February 2011 (14)
- January 2011 (21)
- December 2010 (23)
- November 2010 (21)
- October 2010 (31)
- September 2010 (21)
- August 2010 (21)
- July 2010 (13)
- June 2010 (13)
- May 2010 (18)
- April 2010 (19)
- March 2010 (2)
- Bethesda (243)
- Chevy Chase (72)
- District of Columbia (39)
- History (5)
- Information for Buyers (116)
- Information for Sellers (45)
- Investing in Real Estate (3)
- Just For Fun (105)
- Mortgages and Lending (12)
- Neighborhood Finds (2)
- Neighborhoods (2)
- Out of Town Sellers/Estate Sales (4)
- Relocating to the DC area (23)
- State of the Market (121)