Real Estate Decline – Wall Street Journal

 September 10, 2009

The Wall Street Journal carried an article today about a further real estate decline predicted by Meredith Whitney. Much of her analysis is based on the larger American cities hit hardest by the mortgage melt down, which of course led to the foreclosures that brought real estate prices to their knees.

Despite her dire predictions, many analysts feel there is a marginal recovery in the market now and if as she suggests unemployment climbs, the drop will be significantly less than her 25% prediction.

Meredith Whitney a well known banking analyst feels the real estate market is in for another major shock, part of a cycle of tumbling home prices and escalating unemployment which she says could plummet another 25%.

Since here in Montana and other cities in the United States the real estate market is showing some signs of stabilizing, that is a pretty depressing prediction. Sales while slow have been gaining steady growth over the summer but dropping prices in other states will have its impact nationally and that would mean that mortgages can be higher than a home is worth in today’s market. This is untenable especially with declining employment statistics and someone in the household loses their job.

The cycle continues with those unemployed being unable to make payments losing their home to foreclosure, putting more distressed homes in the market, which in turn drives prices down even more. The only bright side is that these lower prices are bringing buyers out looking and finding bargains.

 “I think there is no doubt that home prices will go down dramatically from here, it’s just a question of when,” Ms. Whitney, known for accurately predicting troubles for Citigroup Inc., told CNBC Thursday. “…If you look at the drivers for unemployment, I don’t see that reversing very soon.” (More on Ms. Whitney.)

Housing bubbles grew in Las Vegas, Los Angeles and many other American cities – unchecked for several years and now those cities have experienced a severe down market bringing prices down by as much as 50 per cent according to the S&P/Case-Shiller index. New construction – unrestrained in the boom years has left neighborhoods desolate and abandoned.

Slight improvements are showing up in the statistics in that prices fell less in the second quarter than in the first by 4.2%. This is the first positive comparison in three years. Some cities like Denver Colorado and Dallas Texas have consistent positive comparisons for the past 12 months.

 “Moody’s expects a drop of about 10% from current levels, and the declines will continue late into next year, says analyst Joseph Snider.”

Many analysts feel Meredith Whitney’s doom and gloom forecast is not reasonable given the positive comparisons this quarter.

While S&P/Case-Shiller shies away from predictions, David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee, thinks Ms. Whitney’s is estimate is too negative. While prices may fall further, “a 25% decline from here sounds very steep, he said. “To say that we’re only half way through this sounds pessimistic.”



A Real Estate Market Comeback? Maybe.

Signs are sprouting  in unusual places that perhaps the real estate market is finally on the rebound.  Are there enough details and statistics to back this up? Or is this just more rhetoric hoping to boost confidence in the housing sector? 

Washington this week said that home sales rose last month as buyers took advantage of the depressed market.  Economists were quick to say this is a clear sign the market may finally be bouncing back.  Buyers have been taking advantage of the bargain basement sales with home prices being forced down by the huge foreclosure market.  And first time buyers are jumping on the band wagon to take advantage of the federal tax credit.

From the undersecretary of Commerce "The U.S. Bureau of the Census released new residential sales for June 2009. Sales of new one-family houses rose 11.0 percent in June, well above the rise of 2.3 percent expected by private-sector analysts."

“The evidence is clear that home buyers are taking advantage of Recovery Act tax incentives, declines in home prices and relatively low mortgage rates,” U.S. Under Secretary for Economic Affairs Rebecca Blank said. “Both new and existing homes have become more affordable. While the economic environment remains difficult, as more Recovery Act dollars hit the streets, we anticipate that it will further bolster the economy in the coming months.”

The stats say these purchases have pushed the home sales to a high not seen since last November. Then go on to say that home prices are still falling around the country.  What gives? Another article pipes up to say sales have risen for three months in a row, and new construction is moving ahead into their busiest season since last fall.

June Housing Increase

"The worst of the housing recession,"said David Resler, chief economist at Nomra Securities, "is now behind us." "But the recovery in the overall economy, is likely to be slow and arduous" he said.

"There’s definitely more first-time homebuyers in the market than what we’ve seen in the last several years." says Corey Barton, president CBH Homes in Meridian, Idaho

How can all of these conflicting comments make sense?  In a jumbled way they do.  The real estate market as we all know has been hit tremendously hard by the foreclosures.  This has driven the average price for a home down.  Unfortunately, those who must sell their homes are forced to sell at these rock bottom prices established by the foreclosures.  These factors then creates an environment where home buyers are motivated to buy. So the cycle continues with more sales that are driving the prices down, certainly not contributing to any increase in value for home owners.

Locally, last week in the newspaper, it was noted that developers for the first time this year are starting to pour concrete for new housing. This is a good sign that they have some confidence in the market recovering.  But even though the real estate market appears to be starting a recovery, it does not mean it is going to turn around and become a powerful economic engine anytime soon.

Sherry Fields

**************************************************************************** © 2016 BHH Affiliates, LLC. Real Estate Brokerage Services are offered through the network member franchisees of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Most franchisees are independently owned and operated. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc ®. Equal Housing Opportunity. Privacy Policy Sherry Fields 1020 South Ave. W., Missoula, MT 59801 | Phone: (406) 207-8448 | Email: *******************************************************************************

Real Estate Investing

The term real estate investing in all probability makes you think of  a number of things like hard money, real estate portfolios and real estate retirement plans, and then you may expand to thinking of short sales, bulk reo investing or virtual real estate investing. You may also consider what roles these things play in your life as a real estate investor in different economies.

You can learn a lot about real estate investing. You will get the most out of anything to do with short sales, bulk reo sales, virtual real estate and just improving real estate investor abilities by knowing some real estate investing basics. Check out these three real estate investing tenets that many experts do not fully know:

1. You will always end up with a positive yield when you take on real estate investing education. You can create thousands of dollars in potential wealth with each real estate deal. Knowing about getting that wealth is the key in the end to your success. Learning as much as possible about real estate will increase your odds of success whenever you do a real estate deal. A small investment in your education can yield big results when you use that learning. There are many online courses, your local MLS can point you to training and NAR the National Association of Realtors can also advise you about real estate education.

2. You can succeed in real estate investing regardless of the state of the economy. Many people think (wrongly) that you can only succeed in real estate when the economy booms. In reality, poor economies are great for real estate investors. You will likely find properties that you can buy at deep discounts. Additionally, you may find deals that would not exist in a booming economy. In fact, real estate investing can turn the tide for a poor economy. When the economy is not thriving, short sales, bulk reo sales and virtual real estate can all thrive. You can save yourself and others from major financial woes if you know how to do these deals.

3. You do not need to have a great deal of money if you want to be a successful real estate investor. You can succeed in the real estate investing arena no matter how much money you are working with. There are lots of transactions that you can perform with other people’s money. Private lenders will lend you their money if they think you are a good investment. A good investor will know as much as they can about real estate in the current market. This will help you represent yourself as a solid prospect to private lenders who do not know how to make money in real estate.

Real estate can generate a great return on your investment, knowing when to buy, when to hold and when to sell are critical to your profits. You can create income regardless of the economy. Using your knowledge of real estate investing, short sales, bulk reo sales and virtual real estate you will be able to create wealth for yourself.

Short Sales: Not Enough to Avoid Foreclosed Homes

Industry experts said that failed short sale deals are contributing to the increasing number of foreclosed homes in the country. Distressed homeowners who want to sell their properties at less than the amount of their mortgages watched …

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The transactional loan gives the investor flipping short sale properties access to money in order to close the home purchase transaction (the first transaction) when the original homeowner is ready to sell and the resale transaction …

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The sales of homes for less than the amount owed the bank, known as “short sales,” have been widely viewed as an alternative that could help slow the foreclosure epidemic. In theory, delinquent homeowners escape a mortgage they cannot repay.

Short Sales in Coconut Grove

So far this year there have been 8 single family home SHORT SALES sold this year in Coconut Grove. The average length of time between the day these homes came on the market and the day they closed was 9 months.   

**************************************************************************** © 2016 BHH Affiliates, LLC. Real Estate Brokerage Services are offered through the network member franchisees of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Most franchisees are independently owned and operated. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc ®. Equal Housing Opportunity. Privacy Policy Sherry Fields 1020 South Ave. W., Missoula, MT 59801 | Phone: (406) 207-8448 | Email: *******************************************************************************

Finding Real Estate Listings

Real estate listings – Internet Vs newspaper

Whether you are looking to buy a home for yourself or whether you are just looking to just in real estate, you will need to find out what is available in the market place.Internet and newspapers are the most common ways of searching real estate listings.

With internet gaining popularity, internet real estate listings have become one of the easiest ways of checking out the real estate market. Though the traditional method of looking for real estate listings (through newspapers) is still one of the most used methods, it is a very time consuming one. You have to read through various listings and sort out the ones that seem more suitable to you (and possibly write down the phone numbers and contact details on a piece of paper) and then call up the owners/brokers to fix an appointment for viewing the property (which may turn out to be a waste of time in the end).

Moreover, the newspaper listings generally happen on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. So if a deal has materialised in the meanwhile, there is no way you can check it without actually calling up all of the local real estate companies. On the contrary, the internet real estate listings (on a good real estate listings website) are updated everyday. And new real estate listings go up live as they happen on the internet(i.e. they don’t wait for the newspaper to get published).

So, if you have been using only the newspaper as your source of real estate listing information, you might end up getting stale information and missing the home of your dreams, or the ideal investment. As such, making the first offer can make a big difference when it comes to real estate.

Further, you don’t need to go through all the real estate listings in order to determine the listings that look suitable to you. Much like Google many sites today allow you to specify various search criteria/ filters in order to get only those real estate listings that you really want to look into. This is a big advantage when compared with newspapers where listings are generally classified just on the basis of location of the property. Thus you can save a lot of time here by browsing only through the real estate listings that are of interest to you.

There is no need to note phone numbers etc; you can just take printouts of the listings you want. Some websites also provide tools/ facilities to track the search criteria for you. You could even contact the listing agent by sending a message through the website (some websites provide such email type of facility). Another important benefit from real estate listings on internet is that some of them also contain images of the property. So you can have a look at the images and see if you like the property at all.

So, real estate listings on the internet do seem to offer a lot of convenience. However, internet or newspaper is really a matter of personal choice too.

Reflections of a Newsosaur: Realtors repudiate newspaper ads

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Why advertising real estate online is so much more effective than …

During his 7 years working at the company, online Australian ad spend in real estate grew from around $7 million a year to over $180 million a year. In developed markets around the world, print advertising has pretty much dropped off.

Using Real Estate Internet Marketing To Reach Out To Customers

It has always been customary for realtors to do a heavy amount of print advertising. The best marketing campaigns had real estate professional’s faces on the backs of phone books, on bus stop benches and all over the weekly newspapers. 

**************************************************************************** © 2016 BHH Affiliates, LLC. Real Estate Brokerage Services are offered through the network member franchisees of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Most franchisees are independently owned and operated. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc ®. Equal Housing Opportunity. Privacy Policy Sherry Fields 1020 South Ave. W., Missoula, MT 59801 | Phone: (406) 207-8448 | Email: *******************************************************************************

A Real Estate Broker

Real estate is a popular investment avenue. Currently there are a lot of people who invest in real estate. For some real estate is their primary job. They perform as real estate brokers, sales agents, buyers agents, investors, attorneys and still others who work mainly in the real estate industry. However, there are folks who just want to invest in real estate (as it is an attractive avenue for investment). For such people, getting a good real estate broker can make a big difference between a good deal and not-so-good one.

So how does one choose a good real estate broker?

The first thing to look for is the reputation of the real estate broker. A real estate broker who has good reputation would have earned it over a period of time by helping buyers get the property of their choice (and as per their needs), at the same time getting a good price for the property seller. In fact, experience is the second important thing to look for in a real estate broker. Bad real estate brokers can’t exist for long (since the bad news about anyone travels much faster than the good news). So experience is a good measure because you know that the real estate broker is still in business. Call your local Chamber of Commerce and the Better Business Bureau and ask if there have been any complaints made against the Broker. If the broker is a Realtor, contact the local multiple listing office to find out if there have been any complaints, charges or reprimands against them.

In speaking with the broker you will be able to assess their personality – are they helpful and willing to listen – or are they interested in telling you what you need? A good real estate broker will not act just as the salesperson for the seller (from whom the real estate broker is due to receive commission/fee when the deal materializes) but will also pay heed to the needs of the buyer.

They will normally have a lot of properties available for sale at any point in time. Brokers will generally have a small team of people working in an organized way to get the deal closed between a buyer and a seller (making both parties happy at the same time). Grouping the properties they have listed in a way that is easy to understand e.g. group them on the basis of location, price, house types etc. for the buyer allows the buyer an opportunity to consider different options than they may have originally thought about.

A good broker will also offer advice to the seller on small repairs or things that can help them to get an even better price for their property. Spending time with clients, a real estate broker will patiently listen to the requirements of the buyers and point them to the properties that best fit their requirements (instead of just showing them the list and asking them to review the ones they might be interested in viewing).

Checking with friends/family that have previously used the services of a good real estate broker is another way that can sometimes help you find a good real estate broker fairly quickly. | The news source for sharper real estate agents …

One of the most powerful features of Twitter is its ability to find what people are saying about a topic. For real estate, this is a great tool and agents and homeowners alike can use it to find out the latest market statistics or news. See article» … is a listing site that hopes its partnership with independent brokers around the country will lay the groundwork for a future national MLS built and owned by the brokers….

How to Find a One Percent Real Estate Broker – Tips For Buy Home Blog

Real estate brokers operate all across the United States. Some individuals operate on a national level, but most operate on.

TRULIA – Truly A Good Idea! | Your Atlanta Real Estate Agent

Trulia is a Real Estate site for consumers and realtors alike. Consumers can find properties and ask Real Estate related questions. Realtors can post blogs, post their listings and answer consumers questions.

Real Estate Investing: The Basics

In addition, you can find deals that simply would not exist in a booming economy. In fact, real estate investing can turn the tide for a poor economy. When the economy is not so good, short sales, bulk reo sales and virtual real estate …


Real estate agent

All about real estate agents

Real estate agents are professionals who help buyers find property and sellers sell property. In Montana some real estate agents also do rentals where they help tenants find rentals. In some cases real estate agents are also licensed property managers who maintain the property on the behalf of the landlords. The real estate agents are paid a commission for their services, but do not receive a salary from the brokerage they work with. Real estate agents generally calculate their fee as a percentage of the selling price. People, who want to list their property for sale, leave the details of their property with the real estate agent to market and sell the property, to arrange showings of the property and present all offers to the sellers. The buyers can find the property listed on line and contact their own agent (called a buyers agent) or can call the listing agent for details and access to the property. Providing information about the property to buyers and buyers agents is part of the marketing plan.

Home buyers use real estate agents when it is a sellers market so that they have a better chance of buying a home at a price they can afford. But buyers also use agents in a buyers market where the competition is stiff and making the right offer the first time wins the bid. Agents with experience can guide buyers through the process to help them achieve their goal.

Many agents have mastered the art of negotiation and this can benefit both buyers and sellers when it comes to getting what they want out of the transaction. A seller can often get the best price for his/her property by using the advice received from an experienced real estate agent. An agent will also analyze the needs of a home buyer and show them homes available within their budget. Real estate agents will discuss their needs and make a suggestions.

A licensed Realtor is required to taking ongoing education classes every year to represent you with the sale of your home. They are required to know the local and state laws concerning the transaction whether they are representing you as the seller or the buyer or both (dual agent).

Agents work with lenders, banks, title companies, home inspectors and a host of support business and all of this networking and relationship building works for you to ensure that your sale, your purchase is handled legally and timely.

These are just many of the reasons for staying away from the pitfalls that “FSBOs” [For Sale By Owner]  have found themselves in after a sale which has ended up costing them money they did not expect to pay.

About Us is dedicated to providing quality information on the subject of Montana Real Estate and in particular, on Real Estate opportunities in Missoula and surrounding area. Our agency has membership in three MLS systems covering all of the western part of the state to the Idaho border on the west and south and Canada to the north.

Here you will find helpful reviews, informative information and tips and much more. This site is in the format of a ‘weblog’ so that each time I post new information, it will come to the top of the front page. This means that you can check back here frequently to see new updates to the information found here.

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I hope you find the information I provide valuable and helpful.

All the best,

Sherry Fields

"Building Relationships so you can buy and sell with confidence"

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If you have any questions regarding the content in this website, about the products that are mentioned, or just any questions at all don’t hesitate to contact me at the following address. I’d also love to hear any feedback on the site if you’ve found it helpful or have some ideas about how I can improve the site in some way.

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Sherry Fields
“Building Relationships so you can buy and sell with confidence”

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