The Liz Moore Market Watch Blog

Liz Moore

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Are You Looking for a Home in Newport News?

Posted by Liz Moore on Tue, Aug 30, 2016 @ 04:17 PM

We are excited to bring you the latest issue of the Liz Moore Newport News Homes MagazineClick the image below to flip through the magazine featuring our newest Newport News homes for sale.

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Check out the rest of our digital magazines - Hampton HomesWilliamsburg HomesWaterfront Property, and more!  You can subscribe to one or more of our magazines, and they will be delivered FREE to your inbox once a month, dynamically uploading the latest issues.

Check Out Our Digital Magazines

 

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Tags: Buyers, Newport News

How to Shop for a Mortgage, Part 2: Define What Affordable Means To You

Posted by Liz Moore on Tue, Aug 23, 2016 @ 03:53 PM

Only you can decide how much you are comfortable paying for your housing each month. In most cases, your lender can consider only if you are able to repay your mortgage, not whether you will be comfortable repaying your loan. Based on your whole financial picture, think about whether you want to take on the mortgage Money-to-grow.jpgpayment plus the other costs of homeownership such as appliances, repairs, and maintenance.
You can find calculators to help with this process at www.lizmoore.com/buying/mortgage-tools .

Click Here to Download "How to Shop for a Mortgage"

Compare Apples to Apples

The lowest advertised interest rate may not necessarily be the best option, since fees can significantly drive up the cost of a mortgage. In general, a mortgage with higher fees will have a lower interest rate, so it’s important to ask about loan origination and underwriting fees, broker fees, and other closing costs. Some fees are paid up front when you apply for a loan (application and appraisal fees, for instance), while others are collected at closing. Ask the lender which fees you will be charged, and to explain to you what each fee covers.

There are a multitude of different loan programs from which to choose: VA, FHA, VHDA, conventional, and more.  Once you have decided on a loan product, be sure to use the same criteria to compare one lender to another: they should price the same product, term, down payment, credit score, etc. You’ll need to analyze both interest rates and fees to insure you have an accurate picture to make the best decision.

Are you thinking about starting the home buying process?  Talking to a local lender is a great first step!  Contact Gee Horton, with Tidewater Home Funding, at ghorton@tidewaterhomefunding.com and she can help get you started.

 

Tags: Buyers

Construction is Underway in Village Park of Poquoson

Posted by Liz Moore on Wed, Aug 03, 2016 @ 03:48 PM

We are very excited to be seeing so much progress in Village Park of Poquoson!

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This community of 26 town home units masterfully crafted by Wayne Harbin Builders is located in the heart of Poquoson.  Offering a small town atmosphere with friendly neighbors who have a common interest in the well-being of the city and their families, Poquoson is near major employment sites including Langley Air Force Base, NASA, Fort Monroe, and The Newport News Shipyard.

We are currently offering some great incentives on the Loblolly Pine and the Dogwood floor plans in the first building that include a free fireplace; free refrigerator and a free washer and dryer, in addition to builder paid closing costs.  Call 757-873-2707 for more details.

Interested in Village Park of Poquoson?  Click below to download the price list.

Download the Village Park Price List

 

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Tags: Poquoson, New Homes, Village Park

How to Shop for a Mortgage, Part 1: Where Should You Start?

Posted by Liz Moore on Tue, Jul 19, 2016 @ 04:39 PM

Buying a home is likely to be one of, if not the, largest purchases in your lifetime. Choosing the right mortgage, and mortgage lender, is a critical step in the process.  So, where should you begin?

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First, a lender can help you narrow down your desired price range, both in terms of what you will qualify for, and also in terms of what is comfortable. Having a thorough understanding of how much cash you’ll need for a down payment and closing costs is essential to know before you begin to formulate a negotiating strategy.

Click Here to Download "How to Shop for a Mortgage"

A mortgage is a long-term financial obligation and the rate you pay greatly affects the overall cost of buying your new home. A 0.5% difference in rate, for example, can save or cost you tens of thousands of dollars over the life of a loan. Accordingly it is important to shop around.

Shop For Your Lender Before You Shop For Your House

Today’s sellers won’t accept an offer until they can review a written pre-approval letter. Many sellers and their listing agents prefer that pre-approval letter comes from a reputable local lender. This can give you a negotiating edge if there are multiple prospective buyers for the same property.

Where Should You Start?

At Liz Moore & Associates, we strongly recommend using a proven local lender. Because we sell thousands of homes every year, we have a lot of experience with which mortgage companies offer the best products and the best service. 

Are you thinking about starting the home buying process?  Talking to a local lender is a great first step!  Contact McKim Beale, with TowneBank Mortgage, at mckim.beale@townebankmortgage.com and he can help get you started.

 

Tags: Buyers

40th Annual Norfolk Harborfest This Weekend

Posted by Liz Moore on Thu, Jun 09, 2016 @ 04:15 PM

The 40th annual Norfolk Harborfest will be held this week at Town Point Park, June 9-12.

For four days, the historic waterfront festival offers a weekend packed with thrilling activities on land and sea to include tall ships and the Parade of Sail, artisan foods and beverages, work boat races, unique and unusual performances, one of the largest fireworks shows on the East Coast, family games and activities, national and regional entertainment, and much more.

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(image source: Festevents.org)

The spectacular Parade of Sail, under the direction of the Virginia Pilots Association, will enter the Downtown Norfolk Harbor on Friday, June 10 at 12 pm.  Following tradition, this impressive fleet will include tall ships, character vessels, sleek power cruisers, sailing craft, antique and classic wooden boats, military vessels, tugs and more!  Thousands of onlookers stationed at vantage points along the Elizabeth River will be able to witness this expansive fleet as it dances down the river towards Town Point Park.

Produced by Pyro Shows of Tennessee, the Harborfest Fireworks Display is one of the largest waterfront pyrotechnics shows on the East Coast.  Be prepared for the unexpected as the sky is filled with an explosive display of light synchronized to a booming musical score.  The show is scheduled for Saturday night at 9:30 pm and will be fired from TWO floating platforms in the Elizabeth River.

Local and Regional musicians are always a draw for Harborfest.  This year, acts such as the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Grace Potter, Rick Springfield, The Wailers, and many, many more will be performing throughout the weekend.  Click here for the full music schedule.  

Interested in finding more things to do in and around the Historic Triangle? Subscribe here to our blog as we post ideas frequently.  You also can purchase a copy of Liz’s recently published book, 101 Reasons to Love Living in the Historic Triangle, in either paperback or e-book version by clicking the button below.

Purchase "101 Reasons to Love Living in the Historic Triangle"

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Tags: Locals - 101 Reasons

Inventory Drops to a Five Month Supply on the Peninsula

Posted by Liz Moore on Fri, May 06, 2016 @ 03:09 PM

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A steadily declining supply of inventory has led to a robust Spring market on the Virginia Peninsula (REIN MLS areas 101-112).

Click to Find Out How Much Your Home is Worth

The current market has a 5 month supply of inventory (down from 7.3 months in January), which has dropped below the balanced market of a 6 months supply, indicating a trend favoring sellers.  Pending sales are up 21% for the first quarter, as compared to the first quarter of 2015.  Liz Moore & Associates Williamsburg office celebrated a record March, and is pacing to set yet another record this month!  What does that mean for you?  It’s a great time to sell!

The first step in pricing your home right is finding a professional real estate agent who can help you do just that.  Email us at concierge@lizmoore.com or click below for a complementary market analysis on your home.

How Much is My Home Worth?

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Tags: Buyers, Sellers, Home Sale Statistics & Trends, Hampton, York County, Newport News, Poquoson

Where Did Buyers Find Their Home in 2015?

Posted by Liz Moore on Thu, Apr 07, 2016 @ 04:14 PM

The 2015 National Association of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers reports on where buyers found the home they purchased.  

Click Here to Download Our Free Home Buyer's Handbook

Internet - 44%
The number has consistently increased year after year, starting at just 8% in 2001.

Real Estate Agent - 33%
Ranging between 38% and 33% since 2004, this number was at its highest in 2001 (48%) and its lowest (33%) 2013-2015.

Yard Sign/Open House Sign - 9%
This number stayed between 15% and 16% from 2001-2008, and started to drop in 2009.

Friend, Relative, Neighbor - 6%
Jumping back and forth from 7% to 8% from 2001-2008, this number dropped to 6% in 2009 and has stayed there.

Home Builder or Their Agent - 6%
This number has stayed the same for the last four years and increased slightly in 2015.

Directly From Sellers - 2%
This number has remained between 2% and 3% since 2005.

Print Newspaper Advertisement - 1%
This number started at 7% in 2001 and has consistently dropped year after year. 

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Are you looking to start the home buying process?  Email us at concierge@lizmoore.com, we'd love to help! Or, click below to download our free Home Buyer's Handbook.

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Tags: Buyers, Sellers

Liz's Crystal Ball for 2016

Posted by Liz Moore on Wed, Feb 17, 2016 @ 03:28 PM

2015 was a very good year for local real estate. After a strong bounce back year in 2013, followed by a relatively flat 2014, this past year showed sales and pricing gains again in most segments of the market.

In greater Williamsburg, closed sales finished up an impressive 18% higher than the year before. Median soldcrystal_ball-1.jpg price was up 6% to $309,000. Perhaps most importantly, showing activity was up in December – higher than we typically see during the holiday season. I believe that bodes well for kicking off the New Year with a strong start for closings.

The market is still definitely favoring sellers who are positioned properly – those who are aggressively priced and in move in condition are selling in less than 3 months on average. There is currently slightly over 6 months of inventory available, which underscores the importance of being sensitive to the competition – both in terms of price and condition. This is particularly true in the luxury market, where market time is always longer.

Here is what I see in the coming 12 months:

Sales will increase
As prices have begun the inevitable rise, consumers will soon realize that moves need to be made ASAP in order to take advantage of a 7 year streak of historically low rates and home values. It’s important to note that the market can shift quickly, and the pendulum is likely to continue its swing toward lower inventory levels, creating a more competitive environment than we’ve seen in recent years.
The volatility in the world and its effect on the stock market continue to influence consumer confidence in general. Pending economic factors both nationally and locally could still definitely throw a kink in a continuing market rebound, and remain the wild card in the forecast.

Interest rates will rise
Interest rates have remained ridiculously low, with a 30 year conventional fixed rate a full percentage point below the same time last year. I even refinanced my home (again!) to capitalize on a low rate and a shorter loan term. Rates ticked up slightly last month, with many of our friends in the mortgage industry predicting a continued inevitable rise in 2016.

Because it’s an election year, you never know what will happen, and we are encouraging buyers to move ahead with their plans, and not risk the impact that higher rates have on mortgage payments.

My overall message here remains the same as last year: 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.

Prices will increase in most neighborhoods
Prices are neighborhood specific, and some areas are definitely improving faster than others. The overall Williamsburg market experienced a 6% overall increase in average sales price last year, which was great news for our sellers. I expect prices to continue their slow but steady upward trend in 2016.
Real estate is definitely local. We are fortunate to live in a market that did not experience the worst of the real estate roller coaster in 2008-2012, although that also means that our rebound has been less dramatic.

My forecast is for another strong real estate year in 2016!

*All stats based on the Monthly Indicator Report Provided by Williamsburg MLS, covering 2014 and 2015

If you’re a seller who has been wondering if it might finally be time to sell, email us at concierge@lizmoore.com, or click below, and we can prepare a complimentary analysis of market value for you – you just may be pleasantly surprised.

How Much is My Home Worth?

 

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Tags: Buyers, Sellers, Home Sale Statistics & Trends, Williamsburg