Where Are You Trick-or-Treating in Smyrna Tonight?! We’ve Got an Idea!

Looking for a safe place to trick-or-treat in the Smyrna area tonight? Check out Highland Station shopping center at 4480 South Cobb Dr in Smyrna at the intersection of Cumberland Parkway.

They’ll have games, music & face painting starting at 5pm tonight. Door to door trick-or-treating starts at 7pm.

There’s also a costume contest. Kids 3 and under compete for great prizes at 5:30pm. Kids aged 4 to 8 compete at 6pm. And kids aged 9 and over compete at 6:30pm. So make sure you get there early and come in your spookiest, most creative costumes!

Plus, the Stevie B’s Pizza Buffet of Highland Station is letting kids 10 and under in costume eat for only 99 cents. That’s a fantastic deal! Other retailors and restaurants in the shopping center will also be participating in what’s sure to be a fun evening, so come check it out!

But Can You Stomach It? ‘Stigmatized’ Properties Can Offer Big Bargains

Since it’s Halloween, why not bring up a sometimes scary  or gruesome idea?..

Home buyers who can stomach some misfortune in a home’s past may be able to find big discounts. For example, buyers can expect to pay 10 percent to 25 percent off the regular market home price for a stigmatized home, according to real estate consultant Randall Bell of Bell Anderson & Saunders. And depending on how bad the crime was that occurred at the home, the more a home buyer can expect in discount to the price.

“In large, it all comes down to finding the right discount to entice a buyer to accept the property along with its tainted history,” Bell told AOL Real Estate.

But for some, the crime that happened may be too much to stomach, regardless of the big discount. Some buyers worry about the resale value and what others will think too. Also, homes where crimes took place tend to linger on the market from two to seven years longer than they would without a tainted past, according to Bell.

For example, a Southern California mansion that was the place where 39 cult members from Heaven’s Gate killed themselves sold for $668,000 two years following the suicides, which was less than half of the $1.6 million list price before the suicides occurred. Also, the home where O.J. Simpson’s ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman was killed lingered on the market for two years before selling for $590,000—$200,000 less than the initial asking price.

However, some buyers say they are willing to overlook a home’s shady past. “It may have a terrible history,” says Chris Butler, who purchased a split-level ranch nestled in a forest in Akron, Ohio, that once belonged to serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer and was the site of Dahmer’s first murder. “But the house didn’t kill anybody.”


Article URL: http://realtormag.realtor.org/node/12051?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+DailyRealEstateNews+%28Daily+Real+Estate+News%29. Original Source: “Jeffrey Dahmer, Andrea Yates, the Lemp Family: Life Inside Homes Where Grisly Deaths Took Place,” AOL Real Estate (Aug. 2, 2012)

Trulia Reports Housing is Back to 43% Normal

Forbes magazine publishes many interesting articles every month, but one real estate article is particularly interesting to look at. House hunting web site Trulia offers Forbes monthly insight into the statistics they measure and interprets what they mean using their “housing barometer”.

Each month Trulia’s Housing Barometer charts how quickly the housing market is moving back to “normal.”  In this case, “normal” means pre-bubble levels.

In determining how close to normal things are, Trulia considers three key housing market indicators:

construction starts (which are gathered from Census)

existing home sales (gathered from the National Association of Realtors)

the delinquency-plus-foreclosure rate (gathered from LPS First Look)

For each indicator, Trulia compares the current month’s data to how bad the numbers got at their worst and their pre-bubble “normal” levels.

While it’s not necessarilly an accurate portrayal of what is happening in your exact neighborhood’s housing market, it’s a fun, informative piece, with great graphics and does a nice job of showing overall trends.

This month, Trulia reported, “In September 2012, construction starts surged. However, existing home sales fell slightly, and the delinquency + foreclosure rate unexpectedly jumped.” Trulia concluded the “housing market is now 43% of the way back to normal – compared with 42% in August and 24% in September 2011.  For the second month in a row, the Housing Barometer is at a post-crisis high.” You can read more of their September results here.






Prudential Georgia Realty Real Estate Advisor October 2012

The real estate market for Metro Atlanta has changed dramatically in 2012. We predicted a few years ago that the pace of foreclosures would slow and new homes would not be able to restart fast enough. The result would be an undersupply of desirable properties for sale – and we were right! The chart above shows the change in “for sale” inventory for the main counties of Metro Atlanta. Real estate markets are driven by supply and demand plus a few outside factors like mortgage rates and the mix of unusual properties like short sales & foreclosures. It is clear that supply is considerably low relative to previous periods. Right now there is a 4.4 month supply of inventory at the current rate of closed sales – which is below the 6 months that would be considered normal.


But what about the trends for demand? Trendgraphix reports that year-to-date closings for Metro Atlanta are up 12% from the same period last year. If you annualize those numbers, we expect to see around 70,000 to 75,000 homes purchased this year. At the peak of 2006, there were 125,000 home sold in Metro Atlanta. At the bottom, we saw only 60,000 homes sold. The 125,000 number was artificially fueled by easy mortgages and the new homes bubble that burst. We believe that a normal market for our area should see around 80,000 to 85,000 homes sold. We are slowly but surely working our way back to normal levels.


The increased demand and lower supply are reflecting in a faster pace of sales. The “Average Days On Market” has dropped an average of 50 days from the run-rate at the beginning of the year. That represents a 40% improvement in the number of days to sell a property.


So what about those outside factors like mortgage rates and the pace of short sales and foreclosures? Mortgage rates remain at all-time lows. On September 13th, the Fed announced a new program to purchase $40 billion dollars per month of mortgage-backed securities. The effect will certainly keep mortgage rates artificially low in the short term. This is different from the decision last year to fix interest rates at effectively zero for banks to borrow money. The mortgage market is impacted by a range of factors other than the interest rate. So this new program of purchasing mortgage securities will keep mortgage rates artificially low for an extended period. Note that we used the phrase “artificially low” since we do not expect these conditions to last and we will have to pay substantially higher rates at some point in the future.

The pace of foreclosures & short sales has slowed relative to last year. In 2011, we saw an average of 10,000 to 12,000 pre-foreclosures per month. In 2012, this has slowed to the 4,000 to 6,000 range. Pre-foreclosures are “notices of default” from the bank to the property owner and are a good early stage indicator for short sale or foreclosure trends. The pace of banks actually foreclosing has also slowed and the sales of the current bank-owned properties are higher than the incoming rate of foreclosure by 34% (see chart below). This means that we are absorbing the current inventory.

But what about the shadow inventory? Shadow inventory is the foreclosed inventory being held by the banks but not currently listed for sale. Some estimate that these are significant numbers and will be released into the market early next year. We do not expect to see a flood of new inventory hitting the streets. Banks are not likely to flood the market and harm their own property values. We see them pursuing bulk purchases to large investors. We also see them being more aggressive in streamlining short sales so they can more efficiently move properties.


Investors are very active in Metro Atlanta. There are some very large and well-funded groups plus many smaller investors or individuals. There is demand for rentals in every price point. But the sweet spot appears to be properties in the $75,000 to $200,000 range that are able to be purchased at a good price and placed into rentals. The rental market is very strong in Metro Atlanta. There are thousands of good people that have been through a short sale or foreclosure that do not have the credit to qualify for a purchase loan. There are also thousands of younger people who are choosing to rent until they are more comfortable with their employment and financial situations. Some move-up buyers are choosing to buy now and take advantage of great prices and historically low mortgage rates. They are renting their current homes and plan to put them on the market for sale in the future when values are higher. Some baby boomers are doing the same thing as they migrate to more energy efficient homes that are better suited for their changing lifestyle.


If you are interested in renting your property, we have a full service property management solution that can help you. This is a more complex area than most realize and we have the infrastructure and resources to allow you to relax and not worry about your rental property. Contact us to learn more.Visit www.PetersenPartners.com today!

The Best Time to Seed and Feed? Fall

Think about what fall brings, besides football. You get cooler temperatures. More dew and rain. And plenty of sunshine. The soil is still warm enough to germinate seeds, but the cool air invites grass to grow a strong root system. That’s why fall is the best time for seeding and feeding your lawn. It will look great in the spring, and will be better able to resist weeds and summer stresses.

For helpful tips on when and how to do what to keep your lawn healthy all year long, visit Scotts Miracle Gro Company’s site.

Atlanta No. 2 Most Affordable Housing Market

According to Atlanta Journal Constitution’s Business Beat Blog, Atlanta is the number two US city when it comes to affordable housing. Blogger David Markiewicz reports:

Metro Atlanta hasn’t been the greatest place in the country to own a home, as everyone with a devalued house in these parts knows.

There is some good news, relatively speaking, though.

It doesn’t cost that much to buy here.

Atlanta ranks second in the U.S. among the top 25 metro areas in terms of home affordability, new research from Interest.com, a Bankrate company, shows.

The median household income in the Atlanta area exceeds the income required to purchase a median-priced home here by 40 percent. That’s better than every other  big market except for Detroit, where it’s 45.32 percent.

The rest of the top five most affordable metro areas are Minneapolis, Phoenix and St. Louis.

Of course, Detroit is hardly the symbol of economic success, and Phoenix has had major housing issues.

The least affordable markets: San Francisco, New York, San Diego, Miami and Los Angeles.

Housing affordability is key concern nationally, and nationwide a  median-income household can afford a median-priced home in only 14 of the 25 largest markets, the study found.

Mike Sante, managing editor of Interest.com, said, “Despite all the talk about how homes are more affordable than they have been in decades, buying a home is still a big challenge for many American households.”

Sante continued, “Dealing with rising expenses and stagnant wages is a struggle. Even after years of declining home prices and record-low mortgage rates, median-income households are unable to afford a median-priced home in nearly half of the metropolitan areas that we looked at.”

See the full blog post at http://blogs.ajc.com/business-beat/2012/10/17/atlanta-no-2-most-affordable-housing-market/?cxntfid=blogs_business_beat.

Plant Containers for Easy Fall Color

Fall is in the air! Decorate your outdoor space with glorious, abundant color from fall-blooming container gardens. Better Homes and Garden’s garden guides can help you to create the perfect combination of colors and textures for your yard. There’s lots of great tips for creative re-purposed containers as well as suggestions on the top fall blooming flowers. Plus, get the tips you need to create stunning container gardens by watching an informative video.

Trends For Home Values in Metro Atlanta

Home values are stabilizing and even rising in some areas. This is due to the patterns of supply and demand. But there are still a few wildcards to keep watching. Many sales are still “short sales” which means that the lender(s) are willing to accept a price that is less than the outstanding mortgage amount. Short sales are typically sold below the market rate. These types of sales are holding values lower than they might in a more normal market.

When you look at Metro Atlanta as a whole, we do see values improving. See the chart below for the positive trend in “$ per square feet”. This shows a 23% improvement in 2012. There is a little more to this story since the mix of what is selling has changed substantially as well. Last year, almost 50% of the sold properties were under $100,000. That should normally be 10-15% of the market. In 2012, we are seeing a more normal mix of price points which will make the “$ per square feet” higher. If you factor out the changing mix, we still see a positive trend.

The Case-Shiller Index is another good indicator of home values for our area. Case-Shiller tracks repeat sales or the price a property was sold for compared to the price that was paid when they bought. This index is widely considered to be more reliable than looking at average sales prices or median prices.

The Case-Shiller Index is reported every month at 9am on the last Tuesday of the month. The reports provide insight on 20 major markets around the nation including Atlanta. You will see articles in the paper and lots of coverage on the television news and the internet. Each month, our company provides a detailed article on the latest Case-Shiller Index which can be found on Prudential Georgia realty’s blog site ATLscoop.com.

The latest Case-Shiller Index reported on Tuesday, September 25th. So, what did these results show for Metro Atlanta?

The Case-Shiller Index was 94.15 which is 2.62% higher than the previous month. This continues to show a positive trend for the past 4 months. But our home values are still 31% down from the peak index of July 2007.

The housing bubble artificially inflated our home values but we believe they have over-corrected to the downside. As conditions normalize over time, so will our home values. The pace of recovery will vary depending upon your local market conditions.

We have access to proprietary market reports and trends that are not available to the public. If you would like to know the trends in your specific area or the value of your property, please contact us by visiting www.PetersenPartners.com.

Perennials: Plant Them Once, Enjoy Them Forever

While trees and shrubs are the backbone of any garden, it’s the perennials that hold it all together, year after year. With just a little planning and minimal effort, you can keep your garden full of color season after season. Fall can be the perfect time to plant. Check out some of these perennials, including some new varieties for 2012, water-wise bloomers, and low-maintenance all-stars from Better Homes and Gardens Magazine. Plant ’em once and sit back and enjoy as your garden gets better every year!

One in Five Say It’s a Good Time to Sell

Last month the largest percentage of Americans since the housing bust said they believe it’s a good time to sell a house, according to the latest Fannie Mae National Housing Survey.

Results from the survey show Americans’ optimism about the recovery of the housing market, and that homeownership continued its gradual climb, bolstered by a series of mortgage rate decreases experienced throughout the summer. Consumer attitudes about the economy also improved substantially last month, breaking the progression of waning confidence seen during much of this year.

Survey respondents expect home prices to increase an average of 1.5 percent in the next year. The share who says mortgage rates will increase in the next 12 months dropped 7 percentage points to 33 percent. Nineteen percent of those surveyed say now is a good time to sell, marking the highest level since the survey began in June 2010. Tying the June 2012 level (and the all-time high since the survey’s inception), 69 percent of respondents said they would buy if they were going to move.

With regard to the economy overall, 41 percent of consumers now believe the economy is on the right track, up from 33 percent last month, while 53 percent believe the economy is on the wrong track, compared with 60 percent the prior month. Both the right track and wrong track figures mark the highest and the lowest readings, respectively, since the survey began in June 2010.

Thirty-seven percent of those surveyed expect home prices to go up in the next year, the highest level since the survey’s inception in June 2010. Thirty-three percent of respondents say mortgage rates will go up in the next year, a decrease of 7 percentage points since last month. Those who say now is a good time to buy dipped slightly to 72 percent.

Consumer optimism climbed in September, with 41 percent saying the economy is on the right track—the highest level recorded since the survey’s inception and an 8 percentage point increase over last month. Forty-four percent of respondents expect their personal financial situation to improve over the next year, up from 42 percent in August.

The share of respondents who say their household income is significantly higher than it was 12 months ago decreased by 3 percentage points to 17 percent. Thirty-four percent of those surveyed say their household expenses are significantly

For more information, visit www.realestateeconomywatch.com.


Article from RISMedia. URL to article: http://rismedia.com/2012-10-15/one-in-five-say-its-a-good-time-to-sell/