Welcome! This blog tracks the real estate market in the Central Shenandoah Valley, featuring market data and analysis, an exploration of common buying and selling questions, and candid commentary on all things real estate.
If you are interested in discussing any of the topics on this blog, or the details of your specific real estate situation, call or e-mail me!
Here's an interesting phenomenon --- in most real estate transactions, the buyer makes the first move, by submitting an offer to purchase a house.
In stark contrast to this (time-proven?) norm, I have recently had several Sellers make an offer to sell. More specifically, when it became known that a buyer was seriously considering the purchase of the seller's home, the seller proactively either:
If you are a seller, considering such a strategy, I would advise you to consider that:
You may have noticed a new masthead on my blog --- HarrisonburgHousingToday.com. For those who might wonder, I made this change to more accurately represent the information presented on my blog.
It's the end of an era, I suppose, as for the first nine months of this blog, it was known as...
"Coffee With Scott :: Scott P. Rogers' Caffeinated Real Estate Blog"
I decided that my blog's old identity suggested that this source of local real estate information was all about Scott. In reality, it's about keeping you informed with the latest market updates, analysis and commentary about real estate in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County.
One final coffee-related note --- as previously mentioned on my blog --- if you're interested in discussing any of the topics on this blog, or the details of your specific real estate situation, I am more than willing to treat you to a cup of coffee (or tea) at your favorite coffeeshop. Call, e-mail, or text me, and we'll set a day and time....
Call > 540.578.0102
E-mail > firstname.lastname@example.org
Text > 540.578.0102
The president is expected to sign a new housing bill today (July 29, 2008) that may have significant implications for current and hopeful homeowners. Here are a few highlights:
For many sellers, this is a challenging real estate market. For buyers, of course, it can be a wonderful time (lots of selection, lots of negotiating power). But back to the sellers --- you might wonder if we're in this alone, or if other parts of Virginia are seeing similar trends and conditions as we see here in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County.
It's o.k. to take a peek --- here's what you'll find:
Almost everyone, including Harrisonburg, is seeing a decline in the number of homes being sold. Of the 21 markets being measured, only 3 saw an increase in sales --- though Harrisonburg's 23% decline was worse than the overall decline of 13% across the state.
Most areas are seeing median price declines, but not Harrisonburg! Out of the 19 markets being measured, 12 showed a decrease in median sales price. Harrisonburg showed no change (increase or decrease).
A large majority of areas are seeing average price declines, including Harrisonburg! Out of the 22 markets being measured, 18 showed a decrease in average sales price, including Harrisonburg's 6% decline.
The stats above are pulled from the Virginia Association of Realtors' 2nd Quarter home sales report. You can review the entire report, or the stats supporting the report. Please do note that this report is based on 2008 second quarter stats, as compared to 2007 second quarter stats.
Back in April 2008, I asked the question of whether high gas costs should affect buyer behavior. I'm back to report that gas costs indeed seem to be affecting where people are willing to live.
Over the past two weeks, I have had three separate buyer clients who have decided not to pursue a home (or homes) in a particular neighborhood or town because of the distance it would put them from their place of employment. All three work in Harrisonburg, and have decided to primarily look at properties located in the City.
Stone Spring Manor is a newly developed subdivision in the City of Harrisonburg featuring 19 building lots. Prior to July 2008, seven of these building lots had sold, several of them having homes built on them.
The lot sales included sales prices between $58,000 and $79,800.
The home sales included sales prices between $262,000 and $292,000.
Yesterday (7/16/08), the remaining 12 building lots were to be sold at auction. The auction generated a quite a bit of interest, with close to 30 or 35 people present. Much of the draw was likely a curiosity of the price at which these lots would sell.
So, how did it go down?
The plat above and the chart below show the order in which the six lots sold at auction, and their prices.
Lot Sale #1 Lot 14 $46,000
Lot Sale #2 Lot 15 $38,000
Lot Sale #3 Lot 16 $39,000
Lot Sale #4 Lot 3 $34,000
Lot Sale #5 Lot 11 $33,000
Lot Sale #6 Lot 9 $38,000
The remaining lots are for sale with asking prices between $46,500 and $64,400.
The property pictured to the right (506 Virginia Avenue) was purchased 18 months ago (January 2007) for $185,000. The first mortgage, with an original loan amount of $148,000 is scheduled to be foreclosed upon on Wednesday, July 30, 2008 at 11:00 a.m.
The house was built in 1907, and offers 2,514 finished square feet, 3 bedrooms, and 1 full bathroom. The property is currently assessed at $200,700 --- thus (potentially) offering a $52,700 equity opportunity.
Do you have questions about this foreclosure sale, or about the foreclosure process in general? Feel free to ask (email@example.com, 540-578-0102). Or review the notice in the Daily News Record.
I have had several people ask me this lately --- people who are planning to move to the Shenandoah Valley, and have been reading my blog to better understand the local real estate market. These two blog readers asked whether they could search for properties for sale on my blog.
Can you? You bet!
From my blog, you can click on the "Searching" tab on the top menu bar. (Or, since you're reading this post, you can click on the search image to the right). My hope is that you'll find that searching for homes in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County has never been easier. We give you quite a few search options:
Here is a quick overview of the current state of the Harrisonburg and Rockingham County housing market:
Click on the chart for a printable PDF, or click here for some additional analysis of the Harrisonburg housing market in the first half of 2008.
If only it were that easy!
When I am representing a homeowner in the sale of their property, I am:
The reality is that I often don't have that opportunity! Most buyers these days are working with a Realtor and thus have someone representing their interests. I can talk the ear off of their Realtor to try to convince them of the merits of the house that their client has viewed, but I don't have the ability to directly affect the buyers' decision making.
Alas, in a market where sales are much slower than previous years, most homeowners really wish that I (or their Realtor) could make that connection with the potential buyers --- and somehow, somehow, convince them to buy!
This morning the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported that Virginia is 11th in foreclosures. This new ranking was based on a report released yesterday by RealtyTrac Inc.
So....what does this mean for homes and homeowners in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County? It depends on when you ask....
So, here's my (elementary) executive summary for you:
From two articles from this past Monday's (7/7/2008) Daily News Record...
In some parts of the country, they definitely are! But since all real estate is local, I'm really more interested in what is happening with home sales prices in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County.
Here's the methodology, for those who are interested:
1. Gain or Loss = Sale Price 2 - Sale Price 1
2. Time Increment (Years) = Sale Date 2 - Sale Date 1 / 365
3. Appreciation Per Year = Gain or Loss / Time Increment
4. Percentage Appreciation Per Year = Appreciation Per Year / Sale Price 1
As you may be able to tell, this isn't an automated report (at all!) -- so I probably won't be reconstructing this analysis too often. I had to sort through all 4,209 home sales and manually match up double sales, etc., etc. Does anyone know an undergraduate statistics student who would like an (unpaid) internship? :)
Enjoy this slideshow via photobucket -- my first such effort...
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