National Foreclosure Rate Drops to Pre-Crisis Levels

Foreclosure Rate Drops to Pre-Crisis Levels [INFOGRAPHIC] | MyKCM

Some Highlights:

  • Only 2.9% of homes are in serious delinquency, down 17.1% from July 2015.
  • This is the 57th consecutive month with a year-over-year decline.
  • The national foreclosure rate has returned to August 2007 levels, at only 0.9%.

Source: Keeping Matters Current

What is a Foreclosure?

A Foreclosure is a property which has been acquired by a lender when the borrower no longer makes the payments on a loan. Banks refer to these properties as “REO“, an acronym for “Real Estate Owned”.

Bellingham & Whatcom County real estate markets have been changing and more properties for sale are now owned by a lender who has acquired title by foreclosing on a loan. Lenders typically list these properties with agents in the local multiple listing service. In some cases, the pricing is very aggressive and offers an opportunity for a below market purchase to a buyer. In other cases, the lender is striving to get as much return on their investment as possible and is very firm on their price.

The process in purchasing a REO is much more straightforward than trying to purchase a short sale, because the lender has established the price. While the response time may be longer than with an individual seller, it is usually within a week or two.

To Search for Foreclosures in Whatcom County click a city name below:

Bellingham | Blaine/Birch Bay | Ferndale | Sudden Valley | Lynden | East County

For more information on the Bellingham and Whatcom County Real Estate market contact Johnson Team Real Estate toll free at 1-888-713-3056, locally at (360) 303-2734 or email us at Info@JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com.

Don’t Underestimate the Importance of Using an Agent When Selling Your Home

Don’t Underestimate the Importance of Using an Agent When Selling Your Home | MyKCM

When a homeowner decides to sell their house, they obviously want the best possible price with the least amount of hassles. However, for the vast majority of sellers, the most important result is to actually get the home sold.

In order to accomplish all three goals, a seller should realize the importance of using a real estate professionals such as Johnson Team Real Estate. We realize that technology has changed the purchaser’s behavior during the home buying process. For the past three years, 92% of all buyers have used the internet in their home search according to the National Association of Realtors’ most recent Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers.

However, the report also revealed that 95% percent of buyers that used the internet when searching for a home purchased their home through either a real estate agent/broker or from a builder or builder’s agent. Only 2% purchased their home directly from a seller whom the buyer didn’t know.

Buyers search for a home online, but then depend on an agent to find the actual home they will buy (53%), to negotiate the terms of the sale & price (48%), or to help understand the process (60%).

The plethora of information now available has resulted in an increase in the percentage of buyers that reach out to real estate professionals to “connect the dots.” This is obvious, as the percentage of overall buyers who used an agent to buy their home has steadily increased from 69% in 2001.

Bottom Line

If you are thinking of selling your home, don’t underestimate the role a real estate professional can play in the process. Johnson Team Real Estate would love to help you with all your real estate related needs! Call us today at (360) 303-2734 or email us at Info@JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com today!

Source: Keeping Current Matters

Your Monday Real Estate Update!

10573927_mHappy Monday!  Have you noticed how active the real estate market is? Are you seeing new signs around your neighborhood and curious if any of those homes already have offers on them? We have your answers!

Every week we keep track of how many homes are for sale around Bellingham and Whatcom County and how many of those homes have pending offers on them. Pending is the time frame between when an offer has been mutual accepted between the buyer’s and the seller’s of the home and when the title actually transfers hands. This give the buyer’s time to get the financing, do inspection, review the title reports and more.

As of Saturday, September 17th, the pending ratio in Bellingham was 46%. Click the links to view a report of how many homes are for sale in each area and price range and how many of them are pending showing just how active certain sectors of the market are.

Birch Bay has a pending ratio of 35%

The Ferndale pending ratio was 39%

The Lynden pending ratio was 40%

The Sudden Valley pending ratio was 52%

If you are thinking of selling your home or property, Johnson Team Real Estate would love to help! We are here to help you will all your real estate needs! You can reach us toll free at 1-888-713-3056 or email us at Info@JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com

Why Getting Pre-Approved Should Be Your First Step

Why Getting Pre-Approved Should Be Your First Step |MyKCM

In Bellingham, as with many real estate markets across the county the amount of buyers searching for their dream homes greatly outnumbers the amount of homes for sale. This has led to a competitive marketplace where buyers often need to stand out. One way to show you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search.

Even if you are in a market that is not as competitive, knowing your budget will give you the confidence of knowing if your dream home is within your reach.

Freddie Mac lays out the advantages of pre-approval in the My Home section of their website:

“It’s highly recommended that you work with your lender to get pre-approved before you begin house hunting. Pre-approval will tell you how much home you can afford and can help you move faster, and with greater confidence, in competitive markets.”

One of the many advantages to working with a local real estate professional is that many have relationships with lenders who will be able to help you with this process. Johnson Team Real Estate has long standing relationship with many amazing local mortgage brokers and lenders.  Once you have selected a lender, you will need to fill out their loan application and provide them with important information regarding “your credit, debt, work history, down payment and residential history.”

Freddie Mac describes the 4 Cs that help determine the amount you will be qualified to borrow:

  • Capacity: Your current and future ability to make your payment

 

  • Capital or cash reserves: The money, savings and investments you have that can be sold quickly for cash

 

  • Collateral: The home, or type of home, that you would like to purchase

 

  • Credit: Your history of paying bills and other debts on time

Getting pre-approved is one of many steps that will show home sellers that you are serious about buying, and it often helps speed up the process once your offer has been accepted.

Bottom Line

Many potential home buyers overestimate the down payment and credit scores needed to qualify for a mortgage today. If you are ready and willing to buy, you may be pleasantly surprised at your ability to do so as well. Call Johnson Team Real Estate today locally at (360) 303-2734 or toll free at 1-888-713-3056 to learn more today!   You may also email us anytime at Info@JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com, we’d be happy to answer any real estate related questions you might have.

New Bellingham Real Estate Listings

Source: Keeping Matters Current

Giving Back! Local Non-Profit House 2 Home

A huge thank you to the student’s of Lynden Christian High School who helped local non-profit House 2 Home move furniture for those in need.

Lynden Christian Gives Back

House 2 Home Network Virtual Furniture Bank is a Program of the Volunteer Center of Whatcom County. House 2 Home provides furniture for individuals and families recently moved out of a homeless situation into housing with the help of a housing case manager. Our mission is to engage donors and volunteers in     helping their neighbors improve their lives and turn their houses into homes by providing furniture and household items.

“House 2 Home is a program that works because of a supportive community-the donors providing the quality used furniture, the volunteers providing their time and trucks and the businesses, like  Johnson Team Real Estate, that sponsor the program and also donate items like the use of their truck.  This is the 4th year in a row using the Johnson Team Truck to help a number of families receive furniture and make their new house a home. “

Abbey Lund– House2Home

Your referrals let us provide help to  Whatcom county  non-profit organizations who benefit our community.   Please think of us when a friend or relative talks about  moving – and tell your favorite non-profit to give us a call when they need a truck!

If you are involved with a Whatcom County non-profit organization and would like to learn more about the Johnson Team Moving Truck call us toll free at 1-888-713-3056

Just Listed! Custom Estate Home on Acreage

Incredible County Estate Home just listed!

Welcome to 5005 Patton Rd located outside the city limits of Bellingham. This lovely 4 bedroom, 3 bath home encompasses a spacious 5,125 sq ft and is situated on a private 4.88 acre lot.

 

View the fill virtual tour

 

If fresh country air along with peace & solitude are important to you, you’ll want to tour this private 4+ acre estate. Along with fresh air and local wildlife of every description comes a coded security gate, a long winding blacktop drive, a gorgeous 5000+ sq ft custom home which incorporates every bell & whistle imaginable, a 2 stall horse barn & riding arena & last but not least a huge shop for all your toys. All of this is conveniently located just a short 5 minute drive from Bellingham.

Features

Wine Cellar, Wired for Generator, Bath Off Master, Built-In Vacuum, Ceiling Fan(s), Double Pane Storm Windows, Dining Room, French Doors, Hot Tub/Spa, Security System, Skylights, Vaulted Ceilings, Walk-in Closet, Outdoor Arena, Barn, Deck, Partially Fenced, Gated Entry, High Speed Internet, Hot Tub/Spa, Outbuildings, Patio, Propane, RV Parking, Shop, Sprinkler System, Stable

 
Taxes: $8,656patton-rd
Lot Size: 4.88 Acres (212,573 SqFt)
Garage Size: 2 Car
2 Fireplaces
Heating/Cooling: Central Air, Heat Pump,
Roof:  Metal Roof
Flooring: Ceramic Tile Floor, Hardwood Floor, Vinyl Floor, Carpet

 

School Information

District: Meridian School District
Elementary: Irene Reither Primary School
Junior High:  Meridian Middle Schoolpatton-kitchen
High: Meridian High School

For more information on 5005 Patton Rd in Bellingham visit our website today or call us toll free at 1-888-713-3056 today!

Home Pending Ratios for Whatcom County

Home Sales

Have you noticed how active the real estate market is? Are you seeing new signs around your neighborhood and curious if any of those homes already have offers on them? We have your answers!

Every week we keep track of how many homes are for sale around Bellingham and Whatcom County and how many of those homes have pending offers on them. Pending is the time frame between when an offer has been mutual accepted between the buyer’s and the seller’s of the home and when the title actually transfers hands. This give the buyer’s time to get the financing, do inspection, review the title reports and more.

As of Saturday, September 10th, the pending ratio in Bellingham was 47%. Click the links to view a report of how many homes are for sale in each area and price range and how many of them are pending showing just how active certain sectors of the market are.

Birch Bay has a pending ratio of 38%

The Ferndale pending ratio was 42%

The Lynden pending ratio was 40%

The Sudden Valley pending ratio was 53%

If you are thinking of selling your home or property, Johnson Team Real Estate would love to help! We are here to help you will all your real estate needs! You can reach us toll free at 1-888-713-3056 or email us at Info@JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com

Selling Your House? Price it Right Up Front

Selling Your House? Price it Right Up Front | Keeping Current Matters

In today’s market, where demand is sometimes outpacing supply, pricing a house is one of the biggest challenges real estate professionals face. Sellers often want to price their home higher than recommended, and many agents go along with the idea to keep their clients happy. However, the best agents realize that telling the homeowner the truth is more important than getting the seller to like them.

There is no “later.”

Sellers sometimes think, “If the home doesn’t sell for this price, I can always lower it later.” However, research proves that homes that experience a listing price reduction sit on the market longer, ultimately selling for less than similar homes.

John Knight, recipient of the University Distinguished Faculty Award from the Eberhardt School of Business at the University of the Pacific, actually did research on the cost (in both time and money) to a seller who priced high at the beginning and then lowered the their price. In his article, Listing Price, Time on Market and Ultimate Selling Price published in Real Estate Economics revealed:

“Homes that underwent a price revision sold for less, and the greater the revision, the lower the selling price. Also, the longer the home remains on the market, the lower its ultimate selling price.”

Additionally, the “I’ll lower the price later” approach can paint a negative image in buyers’ minds. Each time a price reduction occurs, buyers can naturally think, “Something must be wrong with that house.” Then when a buyer does make an offer, they low-ball the price because they see the seller as “highly motivated.” Pricing it right from the start eliminates these challenges.

Don’t build “negotiation room” into the price.

Many sellers say that they want to price their home high in order to have “negotiation room.” But, what this actually does is lower the number of potential buyers that see the house. And we know that limiting demand like this will negatively impact the sales price of the house.

Not sure about this? Think of it this way: when a buyer is looking for a home online (as they are doing more and more often), they put in their desired price range. If your seller is looking to sell their house for $400,000, but lists it at $425,000 to build in “negotiation room,” any potential buyers that search in the $350k-$400k range won’t even know your listing is available, let alone come see it!

A better strategy would be to price it properly from the beginning and bring in multiple offers. This forces these buyers to compete against each other for the “right” to purchase your house.

Look at it this way: if you only receive one offer, you are set up in an adversarial position against the prospective buyer. If, however, you have multiple offers, you have two or more buyers fighting to please you. Which will result in a better selling situation?

The Price is Right

Great pricing comes down to truly understanding the real estate dynamics in your neighborhood. Here at Johnson Team Real Estate we will take the time to simply and effectively explain what is happening in Bellingham and Whatcom County housing market and how it applies to your home. We will tell you what you need to know rather than what you want to hear. This will put you in the best possible position.

home-worth-bannerCall Johnson Team Real Estate today at 1-888-713-3056 to learn more or visit us at www.JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com

Source: Keeping Matters Current

September Real Estate Pending Ratios

Have you noticed how active the real estate market is? Are you seeing new signs around your neighborhood and curious if any of those homes already have offers on them? We have your answers!

Every week we keep track of how many homes are for sale around Bellingham and Whatcom County and how many of those homes have pending offers on them. Pending is the time frame between when an offer has been mutual accepted between the buyer’s and the seller’s of the home and when the title actually transfers hands. This give the buyer’s time to get the financing, do inspection, review the title reports and more.

As of Saturday, September 3rd, the pending ratio in Bellingham was 45%. Click the links to view a report of how many homes are for sale in each area and price range and how many of them are pending showing just how active certain sectors of the market are.

Birch Bay has a pending ratio of 36%

The Ferndale pending ratio was 39%

The Lynden pending ratio was 34%

The Sudden Valley pending ratio was 49%

If you are thinking of selling your home or property, Johnson Team Real Estate would love to help! We are here to help you will all your real estate needs! You can reach us toll free at 1-888-713-3056 or email us at Info@JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com

Why Is There So Much Paperwork to Sign to Get a Mortgage?

Why Is There So Much Paperwork to Sign to Get a Mortgage? | MyKCM

We are often asked why there is so much paperwork mandated by the bank for a mortgage loan application when buying a home today. It seems that the bank needs to know everything about us and requires three separate sources to validate each and every entry on the application form.

Many buyers are being told by friends and family that the process was a hundred times easier when they bought their home ten to twenty years ago.

There are two very good reasons that the loan process is much more onerous on today’s buyer than perhaps any time in history.

1. The government has set new guidelines that now demand that the bank prove beyond any doubt that you are indeed capable of affording the mortgage.

During the run-up in the housing market, many people ‘qualified’ for mortgages that they could never pay back. This led to millions of families losing their home. The government wants to make sure this can’t happen again.

2. The banks don’t want to be in the real estate business.

Over the last seven years, banks were forced to take on the responsibility of liquidating millions of foreclosures and also negotiating another million plus short sales. Just like the government, they don’t want more foreclosures. For that reason, they need to double (maybe even triple) check everything on the application.

However, there is some good news in the situation.

The housing crash that mandated that banks be extremely strict on paperwork requirements also allows you to get a mortgage interest rate as low as 3.43%, the latest reported rate from Freddie Mac.

The friends and family who bought homes ten or twenty years ago experienced a simpler mortgage application process but also paid a higher interest rate (the average 30 year fixed rate mortgage was 8.12% in the 1990’s and 6.29% in the 2000’s). If you went to the bank and offered to pay 7% instead of less than 4%, they would probably bend over backwards to make the process much easier.

Bottom Line

Instead of concentrating on the additional paperwork required, let’s be thankful that we are able to buy a home at historically low rates. If you in the market for a mortgage of a new home Johnson Team Real Estate is here to help! Call us today at 1-888-713-3056 or email us at Info@JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com today!

Search for currently listed homes and property on our website today www.JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com

New Bellingham Real Estate ListingsSource: Keeping Matters Current