Greater Nashville Association of Realtors® Releases February 2009 Statistics

MARKET SHOWS SOME ENCOURAGING SIGNS 

 

There were 1,267 home closings reported for the month of February, according to figures provided by the Greater Nashville Association of Realtors®. This represents a decrease of 33 percent from the 1,892 closings reported for the same period last year.

 

“The number of closings is down from last year, but up significantly from last month,” said GNAR President Mike Nichols . “As a matter of fact, the residential closings alone exceed the total number of closings last month. Consumers are still dealing with substantial economic concerns, but it seems they are exploring what is available and considering taking advantage of the low interest rates, government incentives and great selection currently available.”

 

Nichols continued, “It is good to see that the government has taken some action to revitalize the housing market, including the $8,000 tax credit for first time homebuyers. However, much of what has been done simply created more refinancing activity, rather than home purchases. While we look forward to increased closings as we head into spring and summer, it will likely take some time for the housing market to really feel a significant impact from the stimulus package.”

 

There were 1,452 sales pending at the end of the month, compared with 2,183 pending sales at this time last year.  The average number of days on the market for a single-family home was 90 days. The median residential price for a single-family home during February was $160,000, and for a condominium it was also $151,120.  This compares with last year’s median residential and condominium prices of $168,000 and $154,650, respectively.

 

Inventory at the end of February was 23,122, up from 22,473 in February 2008.

 

Residential inventory is up slightly from last year, so there is still a wide variety of homes available throughout the Greater Nashville area in all price ranges,” said Nichols. “And, while median prices still experienced a decrease from last year, the price change is more stable that what was the case during much of last year.”

 

Source:  Greater Nashville Association of Realtors.

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Spring Cleaning for the Exterior

daffodils440We have all seen the buttercups and the daffodils blooming in our yards and along the roadside and that means Spring in Tennessee is fast approaching.  Our excitement builds as we start sprucing up the yards and planning for our gardens, patios and decks.  As we come out of the winter blues, this time of year also reminds us of our “Spring Cleaning” chores.  Spring Cleaning is not just for the interior of the home but more importantly for the property’s exterior.  March is a great month to prep our home’s exterior as we eagerly transition into the growth of spring.

 

Below are some simple ideas to help guide you through the exterior house cleaning process:

 

First impressions are important, and if you’re methodical about manicuring your lawn, you’ll want your home’s pristine exterior to complete the perfect picture. Plus, an exterior freshening a couple of times a year allows you to spot and repair any problems before they become major issues.

 

safety_pressure-washerAs with all cleaning, it’s best to dissolve soil rather than aggressively scrub it off. Pre-spray areas to be cleaned with water and a detergent solution (use a garden hose fitted with a detergent dispenser). After a few minutes, gently scrub using a long handled brush, rinse and inspect your work.

 

As an option, why not buy or rent a pressure washer? You’ll need a garden hose that attaches to this pump machine, and water will spray at 1500 or more pounds per square inch (or PSI): handle with care and practice first, following the manufacturer’s directions. Off come dirt and dust, bird droppings, tree sap and more. Plan your wash top to bottom, to keep dirty water below what’s already cleaned. You’re not removing paint here, so don’t hold your washer nozzle any closer than two feet and not just in one spot.

 

Look around for other maintenance issues. Are shutters loose? How about roof shingles? If so, head for the attic and observe whether moisture is seeping through the roof, which should also be evaluated at the joints. Is exterior paint worn or chipped? Bricks loose or outlets in need of safety repairs? Get gutters before they get you. Leaves and sticks clog gutters, which then trap rain that freezes when temperatures drop and can cause damage. This might be a perfect time to install gutter covers.

 

Blogging: An eye opening experience!

I have learned more through blogging than I could have ever imagined when I joined this organization in September 2008.  You see, I returned to the real estate industry in August 2008 after spending seven years as the Director of Marketing for one of the largest security firms in the United States.  To me, blogging was a marketing tool that could be assigned to customer care, sales and public relations departments as an assignment to produce lead generation and periodically review the progress of the production.  From a distance, it was a source that I should consider using at some point down the road as I transitioned back to my old stomping ground of real estate but I had my plan in place.

 

My good friend, Connie Harvey, invited me to join AR and raved about the results that I would get if I gave it a try sooner than later.  I want to thank Connie for giving me excellent advice.  My plate was full branding my name by following my structure and outline of what I thought would be the best path to achieve market force within my targeted sphere – and now I have added blogging and dedicated myself to visiting AR each day.  What would I gain from this?

 

I wish to acknowledge that I was wrong in determining the value and parameters of marketing concepts and neglecting blogging as an immediate need.  I have gained not only amazing networking contacts, referrals, and local recognition, but also a better understanding of real estate by reading and communicating with this high level of professionals that are members of AR.  Through your experiences and suggestions I am better prepared for situations that may arise in my daily business.

 

Why am I sharing this with you today?  With this post, I have surpassed the 10,000 point mark with Active Rain.  These 10,000 points are more than just rankings and assistance with positioning.  These points reflect knowledge and lessons learned thanks to professionals like you!

 

All the best – Kenneth

Greater Nashville Housing Statistics Released for January 2009

There were 974 home closings reported for the month of January, according to figures provided by the Greater Nashville Association of Realtors®. This represents a decrease of 40.7 percent from the 1,644 closings reported for the same period last year.

 

“The real estate market in Middle Tennessee is clearly feeling the effects of the national economy,” said GNAR President Mike Nichols . “This is the first time we have had fewer than one thousand closings in one month since February of 1994. The Greater Nashville area was slower to feel the full impact of the current national economic situation, and we are traditionally on the early side of recovery, but right now the market is slower than anyone wants it to be.”

 

“The standard formula items, such as interest rates and available inventory are all positive. However, when people don’t have jobs, or don’t have confidence that their jobs are reasonably secure, they are not likely to purchase homes or other significant items. Perhaps the passing of the stimulus package this week will initiate an increase in consumer confidence, but it is likely to take some time before the market really shows solid signs of recovery,” Nichols said. “It does appear that rents have increased, so once people begin to feel confident again, it will make even more sense for them to consider the purchase of a home rather than continuing to rent.”

 

There were 1,282 sales pending at the end of the month, compared with 1,924 pending sales at this time last year.  The average number of days on the market for a single-family home was 89 days. The median residential price for a single-family home during January was $165,000, and for a condominium it was also $165,000.  This compares with last year’s median residential and condominium prices of $179,900 and $158,890, respectively.

 

Inventory at the end of January was 22,509, up from 21,952 in January 2008.

 

“Inventory is actually down in every category but farm, land and lots,” said Nichols. “That is an indication that land available for development is not being purchased, as the need for new homes is limited in light of current available inventory and sales activity. There is a good selection of homes available and ready for those interested in buying now, or for when consumer confidence strengthens and sales activity increases.”

 

Source:  Greater Nashville Association of Realtors, Press Release 020909.

Home Maintenance Quiz – Test your knowledge!

It’s February and time for me to include my Monthly Tips and distribute to my postcard, email, and newsletter databases.  This month I thought it would be informative to have a quiz on home maintenance that I found via the National Association of Home Builders and share with you.

Tennessee Red Roof Home
Tennessee Red Roof Home

It’s the weekend and you have a whole list of household chores to do. Oh, we know you’d rather be golfing or playing tennis or watching TV, but keeping your home in good shape is important. Your home may be the biggest investment you will ever make. Taking good care of it with regular maintenance is necessary to maintain its value and ensure it will provide a comfortable, safe shelter for you and your family for a long time.

Here is a Home Maintenance Quiz that will test your maintenance knowledge. While this quiz does not address every home maintenance project, it does provide helpful tips and reminders for chores you may have overlooked.

1. How often do forced-air furnace filters need to be changed?
2. What part of the faucet usually needs to be replaced when you have a water leak?
3. Should you run hot or cold water through your garbage disposal?
4. How often should the moving parts of garage doors be oiled?
5. What tools can you use to unclog your drains?
6. What tool can be used to unclog a toilet?
7. What faucet part needs to be cleaned every three to four months?
8. What can you use for traction on icy sidewalks, steps and driveways?
9. Where should the fire in your fireplace be built?
10. What will prevent soot and add color to the fire in your fireplace?
11. Where should your firewood be stored?
12. What helps keep unpainted concrete floors easy to keep clean?
13. What should you use to clean unpainted concrete floors?
14. When can you clean hardwood floors with water?
15. Do hardwood floors need to be waxed?
16. What is the best polish for vinyl floors?
17. When is basement condensation at its maximum?
18. Why should noisy water pipes be fixed promptly?
19. Why should frozen pipes be thawed slowly?
20. How often should your roof be inspected?
21. What should be regularly checked on your security system?
22. To ensure your safety, what household equipment uses batteries that must be checked regularly to make sure they are operable?
23. What do you use to fill nail holes and cracks in plaster walls and gypsum wallboard?
24. What is the white powdery substance that develops on masonry walls?
25. At what temperature should your water heater be set?
26. How often do skylights need to be inspected?
27. What is a simple solution you can use to wash extremely dirty exterior windows?
28. What can you use to help a window slide easily?
29. What should you look for when you inspect your siding yearly?

Click ANSWERS and compare.  Source: National Association of Home Builders.

Printable version of Home Maintenance Quiz.