Real Estate Interest Rates on the Rise

Brace Yourself for Higher Home Loan Interest Rates in 2017

Historically low interest rates have finally begun to rise in recent months, and they are expected to continue this climb. How will this affect your real estate selling endeavors in 2017?

Steady incline
Housing and economy experts concur rates are not likely to go back down. Uber-low rates are in the rear view, with 30-year fixed-rates expected to stay in the 4-5% range by year’s end. A rise to 4.5% is expected, with the worst-case scenario knocking at the door of 5%. This is expected to reduce home sales over the course of the year by about 200,000 homes.

Buyer blowback
As rates climb, buyers may feel pressure to act. At a certain point, their home ownership dream will be stretched to the breaking point, but we aren’t there yet. At today’s rental rates, mortgage rates would have to be in the 7-10% range to equate rental costs.

Cooling “hot” markets
In expensive markets (LA, NYC, Miami) interest rates will push out buyers already struggling to afford homes, even with historically low rates.

Rate lock
Real estate selling may also be stymied, as sellers will effectively be “rate locked” into homes with no incentive to move, slowing the existing-home market and leaving homeowners to renovate existing spaces over higher interest rate new home loans.

Extenuating circumstances
Also playing a role: Income levels, which could stave off a decline so long as stronger economic development continues. The Fed raising short-term rates is also up in the air, as Trump’s inauguration, political appointments, and policy changes take their toll. The Fed raising rates won’t necessarily translate into higher mortgages for buyers – but it will add pressure, especially if they start raising rates aggressively and into early next year. Expect volatility in the next few months as the new President settles in.

How will the economic and political climate effect real estate selling in 2017? Properties Online has the forecast for success.

2017 Will Be a Strong Sellers Market

The Data’s In, 2017 Looks Like It Will Be a Seller’s Market!

Still bitter with the real estate industry following the market’s 2008 downturn? Real estate selling in 2017 and beyond may offer some karmic retribution. A seller’s market is predicted, though a buyer’s market is not too far off on the horizon.

What “the experts” are saying
Most economists agree 2017 will be a strong seller’s market, though buyers are expected to have their day in 2018 or 2019.

• Matthew Gardner, chief economist at Windermere
Gardner expects inventory to rise in 2017, but not to sufficient levels to support the currently stretched market. Inventory will take a little longer to sell, but as the job market continues to tighten, demand will continue to outstrip supply.

• Mark Fleming, chief economist at First American
Assuming a market with modestly and predictably rising mortgage rates, Fleming believes first-time buyers will drive the market, pointing to a demographic that’s young (millennial), diverse, technologically savvy, and predominately college-educated.

• Jonathan Smoke, chief economist at realtor.com
Smoke sees market potential for a high volume of first-time buyers, but with geography playing a role: Some markets will be above-average in price expectation or sales expectation – but few will be above-average in both. In seller’s markets, supply constraint will be driving the price; In buyer’s markets, “great buys” are pushing sales growth. The good news? Either is good for the real estate selling business.

• Svenja Gudell, chief economist at Zillow
Gudell sees a market skewing to sellers, with more purchases on the outskirts of the city compared to the urban center, with its much higher price tags. She warns to expect higher cancelation rates and lower conversion rates in today’s challenging financing environment, with pent-up demand declining, in favor of more organic activity as interest rates rise.

Looking forward to a better real estate selling future in the coming years? Looks like the market may finally be on your side. Take advantage, with the help of Properties Online today.

New Agent Tips

What Every New Real Estate Agent Should Know

Don’t let being wet behind the ears in your real estate career leave you in hot water. There are a few real estate business tips every newbie should know to ensure a good start.

Planning for success
Your first year in real estate requires careful planning to avoid sidestepping key ingredients in your efforts to make your first buck. Where should you start?

• Find a brokerage
Your brokerage of choice may vary depending on your knowledge, mentoring needs, and financial expectations. Be sure to visit several before making this important decision.

• Expect the “split”
This can be as low as 60/40 when you start out and require a lot of handholding, but usually rises as you reach sales goals. Standard splits for successful agents are typically around 80/20, but can go as high as 90/10. (Don’t forget the “split” with the agent selling the home as well!)

• Come well-equipped
In addition to your license and Board of Realtors dues, you’ll also need access to MLS, a laptop, smartphone, automobile, cards, signage, and professional clothing.

A look ahead
As your real estate career matures through this first year, don’t forget to also take great pains to learn your neighborhood in depth – insider info can be key to cinching sales. Continue to hone listening skills to better understand their “want list” necessary to create that must-have vibe. Don’t let your marketing efforts slack – create a plan that includes daily goals, as well as a path to developing a strong online presence. You’ll soon find your niche, which will allow you to build that nest egg you’ve been dreaming of. And never overlook the importance of continued learning, no matter how “seasoned” you think you are – knowledge will boost your brand and your budget.

Do you have the real estate business tips you need to ensure a happy, healthy career? Set off on the path to success with Properties Online today.

Boost Exposure, Sales & Listings with a Few Marketing Tips from the Pros

The Missing Pieces to Expand Your Brand

While occasionally a great client or two might fall in your lap, sustaining a successful real estate selling career typically requires a bit of effort on your part in the lead generation department. Put your best foot forward this 2017, giving your marketing campaign the kick start it needs with these tips from the pros.

Your New Year’s Marketing Punch:

• Go world wide
As in the world wide web. A recent National Association of Realtor study shows 92% of buyers use the net to search for and snag houses. If you’re still in the Stone Age – or not using the web to its fullest marketing potential – you’re definitely missing out on a lot of leads.

• Stretch your SEO
Search rankings can make or break your business. If you’re not certain you’re in-the-know on all things SEO, educate yourself – or seek professional help.

• Be emotive
Instead of producing mass quantities of boring stats in your real estate selling media, appeal to buyer’s emotions by writing listings that paint a picture that tell a story. Ditch: “3/2 on corner lot. Lots of potential.” For: “Cute 3/2 home on spacious corner lot with fruit trees and large, open areas, perfect for a play area for the kids or outdoor living space and firepit…”

• Catch the bug
Go from blah to viral with funny or insightful video clips of your home listing for widespread sharing on social media to reach a wider audience. Be funny (not tasteless), creative, and short (under 5 minutes). Knowing your target market is key to preventing flubs.

• Automate
From your car to your home, automation is king. If your generating more than 15 new leads a month, automating software like Contactually and Nutshell offer a far more efficient means of keeping up with prospects.

Ring-in the New Year right, boosting your real estate selling success. Find the tips and tech you need, only at Properties Online.

These Accounting Tips Will Cut Back on Your Taxes.

Accounting Hacks to Help Small Firms Shrink Taxes

Small business owners, independent contractors, and micro-entrepreneurs, lend me your ears! Treat your real estate selling job right, and Uncle Sam may let you keep a few more of your hard-earned Benjamins.

Tax hacks to come; see and conquer this 2017:
By law, we at Properties Online cannot give tax advice, but we do have a few hacks for making your ridiculously complicated 1040-CRAZY journey a little less harrowing:

• Keep things separate.
Shared accounts create complications. Instead, pay every business expense and deposit all income in a separate business checking account. Big bills come before the big check? Use a business credit card, paying charges directly from your business checking account. Keeping all transactions electronic allows you to simply export data to a spreadsheet for taxes later.

• Harvest data more easily.
Ditch the shoebox from hell and stop mining for receipts under your car seat. Take an Evernote photo of every receipt (or screen shot of online purchases) as soon as the purchase is paid, for easy sorting and searching. Correspond social business purchases (lunch, parking, etc.) with a detailed calendar.

• Go the long haul.
Toss your daily calendar on the front seat, logging daily time, addresses, and events, and finally start taking advantage of mileage deductions. At the end of the month add them to Evernote. At the end of the period, you may be shocked to discover how much they add up to.

• Backup your backup.
Copy your calendar into Evernote each month, backing it up to the cloud.

• Know when to farm things out.
Paying a small company in your neighborhood to do all your tax prep work while you’re out selling real estate is likely a far better solution than you re-reading tax prep instructions ad nauseam and searching for loopholes on Google.

Tax headaches from real estate selling endeavors overinflating your calendar? Hack them down to size with the help of Properties Online.