The Liz Moore Market Watch Blog

10 Questions Every Seller Should Ask Before They Hire a REALTOR, Part 10: Why?

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Fri, Apr 20, 2018 @ 02:33 PM

alejandro-escamilla-2-unsplash-1

By Liz Moore

Hiring the right real estate professional is probably the single most important decision you’ll make when you put your home on the market for sale. I recommend interviewing a few agents from different firms before making a choice. There are 10 questions you should ask before you hire a real estate agent - part 10: why?

Question 10: Why should I list with you?

In most real estate markets, only a small percentage of agents sell more than 4 or 5 homes per year. While experience isn’t the ONLY key to a great agent, it is important. Your agent should be committed to real estate as a full-time career, be responsive, and care about your objectives in the transaction. A good agent will ask you what is most important to you. In addition to understanding the market, and having a strong marketing strategy for your home, a great agent is also a skilled negotiator, and will protect your bottom line throughout the transaction.

Are you are thinking about about selling your home?  Download our eBook, "10 Questions Every Seller Should Ask Before They Hire a REALTOR®".

Download 10 Questions Every Seller Should Ask Before They Hire a REALTOR

Tags: Sellers, relo-peninsula-news, relo-richmond-news, relo-williamsburg-news

Hard Floors: A Solid Choice

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Wed, Apr 04, 2018 @ 12:32 PM

neven-krcmarek-424899-unsplashHard flooring has been gaining in popularity for years, especially in the main living areas of homes. Hard floors are easy to clean, hypoallergenic, and lend a sleek beauty to your home. Changing your floor covering is
an update that will instantly modernize your home’s appearance while adding value and appeal.

There are many options when it comes to hard flooring: wood, laminate, vinyl, or tile. Thanks to technological improvements, faux finishes are more convincing than ever, and wood-look products are gaining in popularity. With so many choices, where do you start?

New flooring is a big purchase, so budget is clearly a factor. But you should also consider how much traffic
and what kind of traffic your floors will endure- do you have animals with sharp or thick nails, do you have children that ride vehicles or roll trucks across your floors? You should also consider how much sunlight
and moisture your floors will weather.

There are six main types of hard flooring options: solid wood, engineered wood, laminate, vinyl, linoleum, and ceramic tile.

Solid wood – This timeless, classic material has a natural warmth and impressive wear resistance that can be sanded and refinished several times. Solid wood may expand and contract with varying humidity levels and can dent and show wear easily, and fade from sunlight.
Installed cost: $5-$10 per square foot.

Engineered wood – This flooring uses a thin veneer of real wood or bamboo over structural plywood, giving
 he appearance of solid wood at a more affordable price. It doesn't wear as well as solid wood and some
may be too thin to even refinish once.
Installed cost: $4-$9 per square foot.

Laminate – Constructed of dense fiberboard with a photo beneath a clear-plastic protective layer, laminate can mimic nearly any flooring. The best laminates resist scratching and discoloration from sunlight better than most wood. The perfection and repetition of pattern can compromise the realistic appearance of what you’re trying to mimic. Floors can’t really be repaired and must be replaced once the outer layer has worn through. Installed cost: $3 to $7 per square foot.

Vinyl – Easy installation and a vast selection of colors and designs make this a popular choice. Vinyl is also good at fending off dents scratches, discoloration, and stains. However, even the best products still look like vinyl close up, and the top-of-line product can cost as much or more than solid-wood and laminate.
Installed cost: $2 to $6 per square foot.

Linoleum – Made of linseed oil and wood products, linoleum is a natural, resilient material offered in lots of styles and colors. However, resistance to wear, scratches, and dents varies widely and it can also be relatively expensive.
Installed cost: $4 to $8 per square foot.

Ceramic Tile – This classic material resists moisture, wear, scratches, dents, and stains. Tiles can crack and grout can stain, and the hard surface often causes dropped cups and dishes to break more easily. Tile can be floated without the use of cement and grout, but that makes replacing cracked tiles even more difficult. Installed cost: $8 to $15 per square foot.

With so many types of hard flooring to choose from, you’re sure to find a material to fit your lifestyle and your budget. Once you’ve selected your material, it’s important to choose a style that’s fashionable yet has
classic staying power.

Wood-look flooring – Wood-look tile, vinyl and laminate will continue to trend as products improve in performance and appearance while offering more durability and a more affordable price tag than hardwood.

Wide plank flooring – Floor boards five inches or more in width are considered “wide plank.” These wide planks are a throwback to rustic cottages and colonial-era farmhouses, the wide planks also make rooms
look bigger. Longer and wider planks are rising in popularity as modern technology, and a variety of material choices, makes them more readily available and affordable.

Blonde flooring – Bright blonde wood and wood-looks are a new trend that is making spaces seem larger and lighter. Much like wall color, floor color can alter the perceived size of a space.

Gray flooring – Gray is a neutral staple in realty, on both walls and floors. Gray floorcoverings are still new enough to be trendy but will soon become a classic.

There are plenty of different, unique options trending that will likely stick around for years to come, which means your possibilities are endless. If you want something trendy that will last for the long haul, try going for large plank, blonde or gray wood/wood-look flooring.

Are you thinking about selling and you're wondering if new floors are a must before your home goes on the market?  Email us at info@lizmoore.com and we can help!

Tags: Buyers, Sellers, New Homes, relo-peninsula-news, relo-richmond-news, relo-williamsburg-local

Peninsula Real Estate Market Predictions for 2018

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Tue, Feb 13, 2018 @ 09:54 AM

Donna Moyer, Managing Broker of our Newport News office, shares what she sees happening in the Peninsula real estate market in 2018.

2017 was a solid year for local real estate. Here on The Peninsula, closed sales finished up 3% for the year, with pending sales up over 5%, which indicates a strong start to 2018. Much like last year, we did not experience the typical holiday slowdown, which also bodes well for sales activity in the New Year, despite some early snow events in January.

becca-tapert-391584.jpg

We are entering 2018 with just over 4 months of active inventory, and homes selling, on average, in only 50 days. That is good news for sellers who are priced properly and in good condition, or for prospective sellers who are thinking about diving into the market. Nationwide, most markets are experiencing inventory shortages, which is the single biggest factor keeping a lid on the number of sales.

The exception here is the upper-end market, where sellers need to be significantly more patient – there is currently 12 months of inventory priced at $500,000 and up on The Peninsula.

Prices remained remarkably steady during the past 12 months, with the median sales price on The Peninsula slightly above $180,000 for most of the year, and finishing up at $185,000.

Here is what I see in the coming 12 months:

Consumer confidence has been our biggest challenge in recent years, especially during the contentious presidential election. With that now behind us, activity levels have definitely regained momentum. Record activity in the stock market has also translated to increased real estate interest.

My expectation is that there are many sellers who have been waiting for more favorable market conditions to list – and that will continue to happen as we move toward Spring. We have seen a significant jump in new listings over the past few months, signaling that wise sellers recognize the importance of beating the competition to the Spring market.

As prices continue to climb due to the inventory shortage, consumers will realize that moves need to be made ASAP in order to take advantage of an 8 year streak of historically low rates Real Estate is Local. So are We. and home values. It’s important to note that the market can shift quickly, and it will not surprise me to see a highly competitive Spring season for homes selling below $400,000.

Interest rates will begin a slow and steady climb this year. Interest rates have been perplexing over the past 12 months. Most predicted the inevitable ascent would begin as the economy gained steam, but rates remained lower than predicted, most likely because the feds were hesitant to do anything that might inhibit the momentum of the recovery.

I believe that 2018 will be the year that interest rates incrementally increase, but the question remains by how much and how frequently. The good news is that this is a sure sign of a strengthening economy, but the bad news is that each hike raises the bar on home affordability. My prediction is that this will add some urgency to the market this year, particularly in the lower price ranges.

Prices will finally begin to show improvement in many neighborhoods. Prices are neighborhood specific, and some areas are definitely improving faster than others. The overall Peninsula market appreciated 3% in 2017, and I expect will continue to trend toward more normal appreciation rates (5 to 6%) in 2018 and beyond.

If a home purchase is on your New Year resolution list, buy early in the year, as interest rates have a much greater impact than most realize. For instance, waiting for prices to drop 5% to save $12,500 on a $250,000 purchase may cost you an extra $225 per month in payments; if rates increase from 4% to 5.5%, then your payment increases from $1194 to $1419. For most buyers, the affordability index of monthly payments is a more critical consideration.

We were fortunate to participate in 1 out of every 7 home sales on The Peninsula in 2017, insuring our position as a leader in the local market. Your support and referrals are much appreciated, and we promise to deliver the extraordinary client experience that has become our hallmark!

If you are looking to buy or sell a home this year, email us at info@lizmoore.com.  We'd love to help!

Tags: Buyers, Sellers, lizlocal-Peninsula, lizlocal, Newport News, Hampton, York County, Poquoson, relo-peninsula-news

Can you Guess the Industry's Forecast for the 2018 Color of the Year?

Posted by Lynnette Tully on Wed, Dec 27, 2017 @ 10:56 AM

Every year around the end of the year, paint manufactures, designers, fashion editors, and printers all announce what they believe will be the color or colors of the upcoming year. These selections are derived from many sources including art, architecture, museums, gardens, travel, fashion, food, and cocktails; even pop culture, politics, technology, and social issues can influence these color selections.

In 2016, simple, understated white hues like Benjamin Moore’s Simply White and Sherwin Williams’ Alabaster White that went with everything were trending, and are still great choices for a bright neutral paint.

In 2017, we saw a shift to darker neutral shades. Deep greyish blues and purples, along with some warm neutrals and even a bold yellow made the list.

The forecast for 2018 is even deeper and bolder colors. The Pantone Color Institute predicts intense colors over pastels for the coming year. “Intense colors seem to be a natural application of our intense lifestyles and thought processes these days,” says Leatrice Eiseman, Pantone Color Institute executive director.

One of the first companies to release their prediction was PPG Paints, who for the first time in history picked a black paint as their color of the year. PPG named Black Flame as their Color of 2018 and they describe it as an “unprecedented, statement-making black with deep tones of indigo.” This dark shade evokes feelings
of privacy and classic modernism.

You can expect to see more announcements in the twilight color palette like dark blues, greens, and charcoal tones paired with the ever-popular warm neutrals like golden yellows and muted pinks.

But you won’t only see dark hues in 2018. In Sherwin Williams’ Colormix® Forecast 2018, they predict next year will be about three bright color palettes which they've dubbed Unity, Connectivity, and Sincerity. All of these combinations are surprising and guaranteed to pack serious happiness into a room.

Behr announced “In the Moment” as their 2018 Color of the Year. Behr says, “This cool, tranquil spruce blue is inspired by nature and is a soothing, restorative coalescence of blue, gray and green.”

color of the year.jpg

Buyers can think about using these bold saturated colors in smaller doses, such as for an accent wall, in a niche or on the ceiling only, rather than on all four walls in a room. Paint manufacturers also release of palette of several trending, complimentary colors every year, many of which include more neutral shades of white, grey, and tan.

Homeowners are in no way expected to change the color scheme of their home with each passing color trend. Where these selections can be useful, however, is when there's a particular color being touted that you really like. It becomes much easier to find furnishings and decorative accessories that coordinate with the favorite hue because it's trending.

Another interesting aspect of the Color of the Year announcements are the names of the hues themselves.

The process of naming these colors in rigorous and well thought out, often involving color specialists, marketing professionals, and lawyers to name a few contributors. Where you once saw a shade named Bright Red, today you'll see a similar red named Heartthrob or Spirit Warrior. In today’s competitive paint market, manufacturers want consumers to connect with their colors. Color names can typically be divided into four categories: visual, geographical, emotional, and experiential. Studies have shown that paint names are often the ultimate tie breakers with so many similar color choices on the market.

So, next time you’re shopping for paint colors, consider what’s trending and how those colors and names make you feel. Want to learn more? Visit:
www.ppgvoiceofcolor.com
www.sherwin-williams.com
www.behr.com 

Are you interested in hot real estate topics, tips and trends?  
Click below to subscribe to our blog!

Subscribe!

Tags: Buyers, Sellers, New Homes, relo-peninsula-news, relo-williamsburg-news, relo-richmond-news