The Eric Stewart Group Blog
Trusted resource for local and national real estate news and trending topics, and everything you need to know about the buying and selling process.
Home Is Where the Heart Is More than Ever This Year There’s no denying the financial benefits of homeownership, but what’s often overlooked are the feelings of gratitude, security, pride, and comfort we get from owning a home. This year, those emotions are stronger than ever. We’ve lived through a time that has truly changed our needs and who we are, and as a result, homeownership has a whole new meaning for many of us. According to the 2021 State of the American Homeowner report by Unison: “Last year, staying home became a necessity and that caused many homeowners to have renewed gratitude for the roof over their head.” As a nation, we continue to work through the challenges of a pandemic that’s pushed us all to new limits. Over the past year and a half, we’ve spent more time than ever at home: working, eating, schooling, exercising, and more. The world around us changed almost overnight, and our homes were redefined. Our needs shifted, and our shelters became a place that protected us on a whole new level. The same study from Unison notes: 91% of homeowners say they feel secure, stable, or successful owning a home 64% of American homeowners say living through a pandemic has made their home more important to them than ever 83% of homeowners say their home has kept them safe during the COVID-19 pandemic It’s no surprise this study also reveals that homeowners are now more emotionally attached to their homes as well:As we’ve learned throughout this health crisis, homeownership can provide the safety and security we crave in a time of uncertainty. That sense of connection and emotional stability genuinely reaches beyond just the financial aspect of owning a home. As JD Esajian, President of CT Homes, LLC, says: “Aside from the financial factors, there are several social benefits of homeownership and stable housing to consider. It has long been thought that buying a home contributes to a sense of accomplishment. Still, most individuals fail to realize that homeownership can benefit your mental health and the community around you.” Whether you’re thinking of buying your first home, moving up to your dream home, or downsizing to something that better fits your changing lifestyle, take a moment to reflect on what Mark Fleming, Chief Economist at First American, notes: “Buying a home is not just a financial decision. It's also a lifestyle decision.” Bottom Line If you’re considering buying a home, it’s not entirely about the dollars and cents. Don’t forget to weigh the non-financial benefits that may truly change your life when you need them most.
How Smart Buyers Are Approaching Rising Mortgage Rates
Our Market Ready Guide provides strategic advice and useful tips to get top dollar for your house when the time comes to sell.
Check out this interview Eric Stewart had with Rick Fowler from WMAL where he discussed what the market looks like right now, and whether it's the right time to sell or buy a home. Eric Stewart's Interview with WMAL Rick (00:21): Thank you for joining us on this Saturday morning update. I'm Rick Fowler, we're joined by Eric Stewart. He pops in from time to time, to give us an update on the real estate market what's going on in town. And of course, Eric hosts Pointing You Home every Sunday morning, right here on WMAL. He is with the Eric Stewart Group and has decades of experience in real estate. Eric, good morning. Eric (00:41): Hey, good morning, Rick. Thanks for having me on. Rick (00:43): Well, you know, we've seen some interesting indicators in the economy, but what are we seeing in the real estate market in terms of how they're reacting to interest rates, COVID. What's going on out there? Eric (00:56): Rick, what a great question. We have seen prices climb 10% this past year from August of ‘19 to August of ‘20. And even though we're now in September and going into October where we normally see prices kind of falter as we go into the fall, we're not seeing that. We're seeing a lack of inventory. We're seeing actually less homes on the market right now by 25% to 30% compared to just a year ago. And that was down from the year before, which was down from the year before, which was down from the year before. So we're in a very strong bull market. We have not seen all of the legs of this market yet; I'm predicting. And I think if you're listening today and you've got a property, you're feeling like I just need to sell it now before the election, or I need to sell it, you know, before winter comes in. I would just tell you if you haven't gone to the market yet, sit back, give yourself five months. Don't sell your property yet. The market's going to be phenomenal next spring, I believe based upon the interest rates, which are going to stay where they are. According to chairman Powell, he's saying we're going to keep things there for the next couple of years. This is going to keep this engine rolling. The cost of money is cheap, even though people's income–your income, my income–is not really jumping necessarily. The cost of money is cheap, which makes affordability increase, which is causing the buyers to be out looking. And we've got a lot of seniors who have decided, "I don't want to move into a retirement community. I'm going to stay where I am and live in place." Okay, good, fine. But that means a lot of the stock, the housing stock that would have been replenishing this market is not coming on the market. That's further exacerbating the demand over supply that's causing prices to climb. And Rick, one more thing again, just do not under sell your homes. If you are thinking about selling, do not undersell your home. Please attend my webinars series coming up. Rick, if you don't mind, I'm just gonna mention this because it's great information on how to sell your home for top dollar and how to time the market, how to prepare your house, how to price your home, all of this. If you sign up at EricStewartGroup.com, right on the homepage. Just go to register and you'll see a place where you can save your seat. We have had an excellent response to this, and a lot of our prospects that are coming in are still three or four or five years out. All good. You're 10 years away from selling, you want to get some insight into this market, come and be a part of this. It's an hour long, each one of these. And you come for any one you want; just sign up today at EricStewartGroup.com. And if you can't wait and you need some advice right now, call our toll-free number, which is 1-800-900-9104. Rick (03:39): So you had advice in there for sellers. What do you advise a buyer right now? Eric (03:44): Well, believe it or not, now is the time to buy. If you're a buyer, even though there's a lot of competition for buying and the market doesn't have a lot of inventory, you are risking pain more next year by not buying today. If you're buying, buy now. Look hard now. Recognize that there's going to be a little bit weaker market as we head deeper into the fall, even though it's going to be marginal this year compared to most fall markets, look for that opportunity. And if you want, we have a guide called the Buyer Ready Guide that we've created, which we'll give out for free to any of your listeners. We'll ship it out. No postage, nothing. We'll send it out to you. Just to help you get an idea on how to approach that market. You can also download these resources EricStewartGroup.com. We've got a webinar on selling your home for top dollar coming up this week. It's October the 6th, that's Tuesday at 1:30 in the afternoon. A week later, Tuesday the 13th at 1:30 on how to prepare the condition of your home. On the 20th, we're doing timing the market where I'll discuss how to enter the market for the best time, and I'm telling you don't sell now if you don't have to sell. Wait until February of next year, and I'll go over that on my October 20th, 1:30 Timing the Market webinar. And lastly, if you want to see pricing, well there's six factors of pricing your home. We'll discuss those. I'll answer all the questions that you have. Last time we had 50-60 questions, great questions, and I went back and forth with a group of prospects, just talking about how they can consider the whole market. That will be on the 27th. All of the webinars will have open-ended question time. You'll have a chance to request free information from us. We'll mail it out to you at no charge. Rick (05:26): Eric Stewart, and you can find out more on the EricStewartGroup.com website. Thank you very much. Please visit our Speaker Series page to see all of our upcoming webinar dates.
When selling your home, you’re the boss when it comes to deciding when to move. Depending on your particular situation, there are three times you can consider vacating your current home – before, during, or after the sale. Like a lot of decisions pertinent to the home sale process, a number of trade-offs can come into play.
You hired a Realtor, prepared your property for market, kept your house in immaculate condition for showings, found an interested and qualified buyer, and you finally have a ratified (signed by buyer and seller) contract. Nothing else to do, right? On the contrary, though you’re nearing a sale, there is now a closing process, which should be managed carefully by your Realtor or a qualified member of his/her team. Considering the serious legal implications associated with such a large transaction, you’ll definitely want assistance from someone with plenty of experience in home sales.
Last night I met with a couple interested in moving to a larger home from their four bedroom, two-and-one-half bath, split level. Their main motivation for wanting to move is one of square footage; they’re interested in bigger bedrooms, a larger living room, and more kitchen space.
The high value of luxury homes comes from the unique perks they offer, and selling any home entails communicating its value for the price. When people seek luxury, they search for amenities like tennis courts, a pool, a magnificent view, a coveted location, and an expansive lot. The more high-end amenities a home offers, the stronger the perception of its luxury status.
Defining a legal bedroom may seem simple, but despite clear building codes the process is wrought with grey areas. Requirements differ from county to county, so it's always safer to check with a Realtor or appraiser before you sell your home!
Last weekend the Washington, DC area experieced a horrific storm. It was a wind storm with up to 70 MPH gusts that caused incredible amounts of damage. There were many who were greatly affected, including one of our clients who was set to settle their home in Oakton, VA. In the video below you'll see the aftermath of what a series of strong winds can do to a tree, a home, and a contract.