Now that we are deep into July, with summer in full swing, there might be vague thoughts running through your mind about some potential real estate moves—but certainly not until the fall. Right now all most of us are thinking about is whether another chilled glass of summer-something-or-other is in order. South Bethany mortgage rates and what the folks in Washington might be doing to affect them are not exactly what occupies an idyllic July afternoon.
But if you’ve been paying attention to any newscasts long enough to reach the dull-as-dishwater economic stories they throw in toward the end of the broadcasts, you may also have an inkling that conditions are about to change. And the evidence does suggest that mortgage rates in our area face a likely increase come fall. If your vague suspicion does come to pass, and if you’re among those considering buying or selling a home in South Bethany this year, now should be the time to stop “thinking” and start “doing”.
Exhibit A for that proposition comes from one Michael C. Fratantoni, who happens to be the Chief Economist of the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). When he recently spoke at the National Association of REALTORS® office in Washington, he made no bones about it: mortgage rates will continue upwards, with a first significant Fed hike likely in September. September! The 30-year fixed mortgage, which we all know has lingered at historic lows—below 4%—for several years, is likely to hit 4.4% by the end of 2015 , then move beyond 5% next year.
It’s enough to stifle any thoughts about that frosty beverage.
The good news for South Bethany homeowners planning to list is that Fratantoni doesn’t believe any of these factors will keep the nations’ buyers away. After a pretty lackluster 2014 performance, the MBA forecasts a 14% year-over-year increase in purchase-money mortgage originations in 2015—and nearly 9% in 2016. Nationwide, incomes are also expected to rise, and with new household formations on the rise, the national real estate market looks to remain in fairly good balance.
While it seems there’s no instantaneous need to drop all your summertime activities to rush your home onto the market, with mortgage rates in South Bethany expected to rise sooner rather than later, it’s certainly worth making it a priority to give me a call this week. After that, there will definitely be ample time to finish enjoying that delightful chilled summer beverage. Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.

If you’ve ever had the kind of neighbor who is apt to borrow something (like your hedge trimmer), only to later complain about how it performed, you know how much patience it takes to hold your tongue. The Mortgage Bankers Association would be justified if they felt that way about me: I read their website, and sometimes quote it in posts about current South Bethany mortgage rates—but it sure makes for dull reading!
Anyway, with apologies to their (undoubtedly hard-working) writing staff, last week’s blog about national mortgage rates was as numbers-heavy as usual, yet still held a contradiction…but one that actually makes perfect sense. It also flags what could be seen as a bellwether that South Bethany home buyers and sellers would be hard-pressed to ignore.
The apparent contradiction was that mortgage rates were on the increase: national mortgage rates for 30-year fixed loans rose to 4.17%, which is the highest they’ve been since November. This is for conforming loans; the jumbos (greater than $417,000) went north as well, up to 4.15%.
As everyone knows, low mortgage interest rates are terrific for our South Bethany residential home sales. The low monthly payments that they create make homeownership more affordable for a greater number of buyers. So when rates increase and monthly payments go up, it should create a drag on the market. The apparent contradiction in the MBA release was that the increase in rates was accompanied by an increase in mortgage applications. And it was a big one: up 8.4% from the week before.
Most commentators were united about the phenomenon, and it’s hard to disagree. In addition to the natural surge that comes with the season (spring and summer are always expected to be quite active), consumers are seeing the uptick in mortgage rates and suspecting that rates will head higher. That’s nudging them to action, causing them to jump in now, while rates are still attractive—especially compared with historical averages.
CNBC’s Diana Olick agreed that such sharp increases actually help the home-buying market. She quotes one lender’s take about the buyers: “They understand that ‘wait a minute, rates are at an all-time low, let’s react now, let’s react before they go higher.’”
It’s far from a certainty that rates will continue to take off. Lots of us remember last year, when almost all the experts predicted a rise, yet mortgage interest rates headed in the opposite direction…and stayed there! But you can hardly blame area buyers if they go with the national trend and decide that locking in today’s rates is a prudent move: it’s a bird in the hand.
If you have been thinking along the same lines, I hope you will give me a Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com.

South Bethany residents don’t have to be pet owners to get a sense of just how nutty Americans are about our animals. Just a few minutes of watching TV will do it. After you’ve been bombarded with the images of happy/sad/exuberant/listless cats and dogs who are saved/rewarded by the pet products in the commercials, you won’t doubt that $60.59 billion is being spent on pets this year. It becomes clear how Fido and Kitty can afford to foot the bill for so much of today’s prime time television.
Another fact—one that directly relates to South Bethany real estate—is that slightly more than 56% of all American households are said to include a pet. The ASPCA says that 37%-47% of households have a dog, and 30%-37% of households have a cat (as far as the cats are concerned, it’s the cats that have the households, not the other way around). Whether or not Fido and Kitty are part of your own family, this does give rise to how important the real estate concept of “pet-friendly” homes has become.
Consideration:
Does your finicky cat need a room of his or her own? Does your MegaDog require a large yard? Space is always a leading qualification when you go to assess minimum real estate requirements for your South Bethany family, but since 68% of families include pet needs in their calculations, that is one of the basics that qualify a property. That’s why it makes increasing sense to emphasize pet-friendliness. For instance, if the back yard has a low or not very restrictive fence, a proactive seller might research the cost of installing an invisible fence. Even if they don’t go ahead and actually put it in, having a bid in hand showing that the cost is reasonable could be enough to sooth pet-owning prospects’ concerns.
Consideration:
Although pet owners are unambiguous about considering the four-footers to be family members, that’s not a universally shared concept. If you don’t see (or hear) any signs of pets in a prospective neighborhood, buyers should make certain that a property they are thinking about buying doesn’t carry restrictions that could cause pet turmoil. Local ordinances and neighborhood associations can enforce restrictions on the number and kind of pets.
Consideration:
Along with the growing popularity of pets have come a number of pet perks that have real estate implications. Pet amenities like dog parks are becoming more and more common in newer communities (in some areas, a movement is afoot to feature dog- and even cat-friendly cafes and public buildings).
I hope you will give me a call if you are embarking on an South Bethany house-hunting exploration­­, or are preparing to list your own property­­­­­ this summer. Pet accommodation is only one dimension I’ll help you make sure is fully addressed! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., visit more listings at www.beachrealestate.com.

 

“Buyers make their decisions in exactly eight seconds. After that, they’ve either fallen in love or are just honoring an appointment.”
You’re likely to come across that quotation (from prominent Manhattan Realtor® Barbara Corcoran) whenever you’re researching how to add the most value to your South Bethany home with the least expense. For South Bethany home owners about to list their property, it’s a somewhat unnerving prospect. If true, then every showing may start with what sports fans call a sudden death playoff!
If you are a future seller with an South Bethany home that needs improvement, it’s only realistic to accept the likelihood that should you go to market without doing anything about it, it will cost you one way or another. Either the offers you garner will be lower than they needed to be, or (worse), the home will linger too long with no real offers at all. If you have any leeway in time and/or budget, there are two approaches you can take to fix the problem.
First, you can hire a professional to assess the problem and lay out solutions. It may be expensive (not necessarily); but it’s a pretty foolproof approach. You and your real estate representative can go over the recommendations, assess which will be most cost-effective—most certain to reflect in the value your home realizes—and then get them done.
The other way is to make your own evaluation, and act on it. Drive up to your curb just as prospective buyers will, get out of the car, approach your home, and take in what needs fixing. If your curbside mailbox doesn’t have clearly recognizable numbers on it; if the walkway looks stained or broken; if the bushes have last fall’s dead leaves lodged in them; if the front doorbell is rusty…you get the idea! Note what’s wrong (heave a sigh of relief for what’s right), and get going! It will pay off!
On the other hand, if you have an South Bethany home that’s undisputedly a true eye-pleaser, you’re probably content with the Love at First Sight precept—as you should be. If you’ve done your job of maintaining your home’s exterior and landscaping, you’re steps ahead. But a word of caution: that first decision doesn’t have to be final. If what buyers experience once they are inside is persuasively positive, any off-putting first-glance judgement can be turned around. What’s of key importance is that no single glaring negative element be present. If it is, it can seal a negative first impression…or undermine a positive one.
I’m here to lend experience and advice every step of the way. And a good first step is a really simple one: call! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., visit more listings at www.beachrealestate.com.