Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Buyer Demand Still High, but Supply Running Out

Many Americans mistakenly believe that owning a home is beyond their means. Both homeowners and renters have the misconception that buyers need a down payment of at least 20 percent before they can qualify for a mortgage and purchase a home. But this is a home-buying myth, according to William E. Brown, president of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), who said, “Every month this year, roughly 60 percent of buyers who financed their purchase with a mortgage made a down payment that was 6 percent or less.” Buyers with steady jobs and reasonable debt loads can find mortgage options that suit their current level of savings.

Homes Selling Quickly

Those who qualify for a mortgage may have a difficult time finding a property to purchase, though. In July, an average property remained on the market for 30 days; this is two days longer than June’s pace but an impressive six days shorter than July 2016. Of all the homes on the market in July, 51 percent of them sold in less than one month. What’s more, for the past four months the average listing went under contract in under a month.

First-Time Buyers

The lack of supply will lead to more competition in the market this fall. This is not welcome news to first-time buyers; this group accounted for 33 percent of all housing market activity in July. This is up 1 percent from both a month ago and a year ago. For all of 2016, first-time buyers represented 35 percent of the market.

Some Gains, Some Losses

Although the demand for homes is high among first- time and veteran buyers alike, the lack of inventory is putting pressure on the sales pace. Existing-home sales increased in the South and West in July, but these gains were tempered by drops in the Northeast and Midwest. Overall, home sales fell 1.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.44 million, the lowest rate of the year to date; however, the sales pace is still 2.1 percent higher than July 2016. 

Silver Alliance Realty is here to help you through all your real estate questions and concerns.  We make buying and selling your home SIMPLE!

Contact Silver Alliance Realty

Mary Platt
Designated Broker
(602) 618-6764

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Check These Fall Maintenance Items Off Your To-Do List

Now that summer is gone and fall is here, it’s time to start your autumn to-do list. Here are some great fall projects:

Plant Beautiful Fall Blooms
Late summer and early autumn are perfect times to plant late-blooming flowers. Whether you accent
your front porch with hanging baskets or line your front walkway with colorful blooms, you can
enjoy gardening well into the fall season. 

Improve Your Outdoor Lighting
Autumn means longer nights and shorter days and is an ideal time for a lighting upgrade. If you have been meaning to add a spotlight above the front door, or if you long for a stone pathway lined with low-maintenance solar lights, fall is the perfect time to complete these projects.

Touch Up Your Exterior Paint
You do not have to repaint your home’s exterior to give your property the protection it needs. Just check for peeling and chipping paint and do your own small touch-ups. A few timely touch-ups now will protect your home and extend the life of the original paint job.

Clean Out Your Gutters
Debris can collect in gutters, which keeps rainwater from drain- ing properly. Once the water backs up, it can run onto the roof and down the siding, causing damage to the home. Clearing the gutters and redirecting water downspout extensions so water drains at least three to four feet away from the foundation can keep these things from happening. If you don’t feel comfortable on a tall ladder, you can hire a professional to clean and check the gutters.

Turn Your Ceiling Fans to Run Clockwise
In the summer, your ceiling fans are such a wonderful way to help keep your home cool. But did you know ceiling fans are also a great way to enjoy warmer air when the days get cooler? Run- ning your ceiling fans clockwise creates an updraft while simultaneously pushing down warm air from the ceiling.

Swap Out Your Furnace Filter
Fall is the perfect time to give your heating system a tune-up, and changing out the filters is a good place to start. You may also want to schedule a professional inspection and cleaning to keep your furnace running at peak efficiency all season long.

Clues in the Attic: Fall Roof Checkups Made Easy

"Roofs actually create an insulated barrier that helps trap heat inside, and most attic spaces are located right below them,” says Jason Joplin, program manager of the Center for the Advancement of Roofing Excellence, “That makes them perfect for spotting potential problem areas and damage without worrying about falling off a ladder."

Here’s What to Look for While up in the Attic:
• Water Leaks: After a rainstorm, shine a flashlight into the attic to check not only for dripping water and condensation but also for water stains on the ceiling, walls, and floors. All signal that H2O is finding its way beneath your roof’s shingles or behind its flashings.

• Ventilation: “Think of the attic as the lungs of the house,” advises Joplin. “It has to be able to breathe in order to function properly.” Which is to say, vents stuffed with debris need to be cleared.

• Animal Damage: Call a pest-control pro if you spot any of these telltale signs: nests, droppings, and gnawed wood, wires, or insulations. 

Contact Silver Alliance Realty

Mary Platt
Designated Broker
(602) 618-6764

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

How to Know If a House Is a Good Investment

You want to find a house that is not only a comfortable fit for your family, lifestyle, and budget but also, ideally, a solid invest- ment. When you purchase an investment-worthy home, you’ll have the option to rent it out, draw on your equity, or sell it for a profit when your family is ready to move on to a different house. Here are some tips for determining if a specific house is a good financial investment:

Average Days on Market (DOM) Is Low
Keep an eye on the average DOM for your area. If the average is steadily decreasing over time, with buyers snapping up houses more and more quickly, then it is more likely that a house in that area will be a sound investment. If, on the other hand, most houses seem to be lingering until listings become stagnant because supply outstrips demand, you may want to consider a different neigh- borhood or even a nearby town for your home purchase. You may get a good deal under these circumstances, but your home value is unlikely to increase anytime soon, and if you need to sell in the near future you may end up taking a loss.

Located in an Up-and-Coming Neighborhood or Growing Market
Sometimes the ideal home investment is in a neighborhood that used to be a little rough around the edges but has recently become more popular. This scenario often leads to getting a good deal now and a quickly appreciating home value in the near future, a true win-win situation. Your home will be safe and comfortable for your family and you won’t have to spend a fortune. Neighborhood features to look for that show your home will only become more desirable to prospective renters or buyers in upcoming years include the following:

 Gourmet grocery stores, trendy coffee shops, farm-to-table restaurants, and boutiques
• Good public and private schools
• High degree of walkability and cycling trails

Growing markets are also a sign of a good investment. Is the home in an area with low unemployment and great job opportunities? Are more businesses moving to your city? This is not only great news for your family in the short term (since it means excellent job prospects if you decide to switch companies or careers) but also bodes well for your home’s value increasing. 

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Three Reasons Now Is a Great Time to List Your Home for Sale

Housing market conditions are challenging for buyers in many parts of the country; sellers, meanwhile, are finding the market favorable. Inventory levels are low and sales prices are high. In some markets, multiple offers have become prevalent. And in a blow to first-time buyers everywhere, fewer affordable homes are coming onto the market. Despite all this, existing-home sales climbed in the month of May; every region except the Midwest posted month-over-month and year-over-year sales increases.

1. Low Inventory

According to Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors (NAR), “Current demand levels indicate sales should be stronger, but it’s clear some would-be buyers are having to delay or postpone their home search because low supply is leading to worsening affordability conditions.” In May, 1.96 million existing homes were available for sale, an inventory increase of 2.1 percent from a month earlier. However, for the past 24 months, inventory has fallen year over year, and May was no exception: inventory was 8.4 percent lower than last year. At the current sales pace, the current housing stock could last only 4.2 months, down from 4.7 months a year ago.

2. Selling Quickly

Due to the inventory shortages, homes are not sitting on the market for long. In May, the time it took for a home to go from listed to sold was on average 27 days. This is the shortest time frame recorded since NAR began tracking the number of days on the market in May 2011. Of all the homes sold in May, 55 percent were on the market for less than 30 days, another all-time-high record.

3. Prices Up

With high demand and low inventory, home prices climbed to a record-breaking high. In May, the median existing-home price reached $252,800, a 5.8 percent increase from a year ago. This is the highest recorded median sales price, overtaking June 2016’s peak of $247,600. What’s more, this is the 63rd month in a row of year-over-year sales gains. According to Yun, “Home prices keep chugging along at a pace that is not sustainable in the long run.” Unless the market sees an increase in the number of listings in the affordable price range, housing affordability may be affected. 

If you are interested in selling your home in Arizona, contact Silver Alliance Realty!

Mary Platt • Designated Broker
(602) 618-6764 • Mary@PlattTeamAZ.com

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Planning for Solar? Follow These Steps

Residential solar panel installations are on the rise in the United States—according to the US Department of Energy, more than one million American homes have had solar panels installed as of May 2016. However, utilizing solar energy for your home only makes financial sense if the panels can generate electricity for less than what you are paying your utility company. That means that while living in a sunny location is key, your state’s utility costs are also a factor. Before you schedule a solar installation assessment, answer these basic questions to help you determine if solar is a good fit for your home:

Does your roof have unobstructed, clear access to sunlight for most of every day?
• Is there ample roof space or an area large enough to mount the system? 
 Is the investment worth it?
 Can you meet requirements for local permits?

Selecting the Right System

Evaluate your energy consumption patterns before selecting your solar system components, so you can choose the appropriate photovocaic (PV) system size for your home, and help reduce your overall electrical use. Begin by performing a load analysis, which should include:

 Recognizing your current consumption trends
 Examining your utility bills for the past year
 Calculating your energy consumption

A Grid-Connected or Stand-Alone System?

A grid-connected PV system uses power from your utility’s grid when it does not produce enough energy. When your system produces excess electricity, your utility provider is required to buy it. With net metering, your provider pays retail price for excess power that you send back through the grid.

Choose a stand-alone PV system if:
 You live in a remote location and it would be more cost-effective.
 You are planning to install a hybrid electric system that also uses a small wind electric system.
 You have minimal power needs.

Before purchasing a system, research city or county permit requirements. These will include an electrical permit, building permit, or both. Most PV providers will roll the permit prices into the complete system price.

For more information about solar installation in your community, contact the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners to locate a certified solar installation professional. 


Mary Platt 
Designated Broker
(602) 618-6764

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Always Start Your Home Search With Pre-Approved Financing

Today’s real estate market moves swiftly. Often, buyers find they need to act quickly to avoid missing out on their perfect home. In today’s market, sellers are receiving multiple offers, allowing them the luxury of choosing an offer that’s to their exact liking. So, what can buyers do to increase their chances of enticing sellers with their offers?

The Benefits of Mortgage Pre-Approval

Pre-approved financing gives buyers a significant edge over those whose competing offers do not have a mortgage preapproval letter.  For home sellers, an offer that’s accompanied by a pre approval letter shows that the buyer is serious. The seller (and the seller’s agent) sees that the buyer has done his or her homework and is ready to purchase the home as quickly and as smoothly as possible. When faced with two similar offers, the offer backed by mortgage pre-approval is almost universally preferred. For buyers, beginning a home search by getting pre-approved for a mortgage provides even more benefits. Your pre-approval gives you a firm budget to work with, saving you from the heartache of falling in love with a home that’s outside your financial reach. 

Additionally, having pre-approved financing sets you on track for a smoother home purchase. Pre-approved buyers close more quickly and are less likely to come up against unexpected delays or difficulties.  The process of buying a home is stressful and has many stages.  Taking these steps in the proper order is the best way to minimize your stress.

How Much House Can You Afford?

Buying a home doesn’t begin with looking at the area’s real estate listings. It begins, as with most things, with financing. With a mortgage pre-approval in hand, you’ll know what you can afford. Much of the waiting involved in choosing and obtaining a loan will be behind you as you search for your perfect home. You’ll still have a short wait when your actual loan goes through underwriting. However, as long as you don’t make any changes to your financial status, the loan application process is much shorter if you’ve already been pre-approved. Best of all? By being pre-approved when you make an offer on a home, you’ve given that offer its best chance to be accepted. In today’s fast-paced real estate market, that’s no small advantage. 

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Our Proven Marketing Methods - How We Advertise Your Home

Our goal when selling your home is to get the highest price with the fastest close date.  We do this by providing professional and first class service while giving  your home maximum exposure to the real estate market! 
• Drone Pictures & Video:  Drone pictures and video are the latest form of real estate marketing.  This bird’s eye view not only increases the property’s appeal, but also gives potential buyers a chance to admire the local neighborhood.

• GoPro Virtual Tours:  GoPro virtual tours are on the forefront of real estate technology. These videos are shared to Silver Alliance Realty’s Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, Google+, and more.  A virtual tour makes your home stand out!

• E-mail Campaigns:  Platt Team AZ  has 17 years of networking experience in the Arizona real estate industry. We are able to directly feature your home in our e-mail campaigns that are sent to our large contact database.

• Postcards:  When listing a home with Platt Team AZ your home will be advertised with stunning, professionally printed postcards delivered to over 100 homes surrounding the property.

• Flyers:  Standard for all Platt Team AZ listings are bold, bright-colored flyers to be left inside the property and at the post for potential buyers.

• Social Media:  Graphics and videos of your home will be professionally designed and shared with all of our online community.

• Open Houses:  Open houses are a great opportunity to invite potential buyers in to visit the home for sale.

• Real Estate Websites:  We advertise on several real estate websites including, Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com, and more.  Silver Alliance Realty is proud to be a premier listing agent on Zillow.


Contact Platt Team AZ today to get started on the home selling process!

Mary Platt
Designated Broker
(602) 618-6764

Tom Platt
(602) 615-8470