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Don’t Let Buyer Competition Keep You from Purchasing a Home

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 23, 2020

Don’t Let Buyer Competition Keep You from Purchasing a Home | Simplifying The MarketThis year’s record-low mortgage rates sparked high demand among homebuyers. Current homeowners, however, haven’t put their houses on the market so quickly. This makes finding a home to buy today challenging for many potential buyers. With an obstacle like this, those searching for their dream homes may be pressing pause on their searches as we […]

It Pays to Sell with a Real Estate Agent [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 20, 2020

Some Highlights

Today, it’s more important than ever to have an expert you trust to guide you as you sell your house.
From your safety throughout the process to the complexity of negotiating the deal, you need a professional on your side.
Before you…

Will Mortgage Rates Remain Low Next Year?

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 19, 2020

Will Mortgage Rates Remain Low Next Year? | Simplifying The MarketIn 2020, buyers got a big boost in the housing market as mortgage rates dropped throughout the year. According to Freddie Mac, rates hit all-time lows 12 times this year, dipping below 3% for the first time ever while making buying a home more and more attractive as the year progressed (See graph below): When […]

Chances of Another Foreclosure Crisis? “About Zero Percent.”

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 18, 2020

Chances of Another Foreclosure Crisis? “About Zero Percent.” | Simplifying The MarketThere seems to be some concern that the 2020 economic downturn will lead to another foreclosure crisis like the one we experienced after the housing crash a little over a decade ago. However, there’s one major difference this time: a robust forbearance program. During the housing crash of 2006-2008, many felt homeowners should be forced […]

Chances of Another Foreclosure Crisis? “About Zero Percent.”

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 18, 2020

Chances of Another Foreclosure Crisis? “About Zero Percent.” | Simplifying The MarketThere seems to be some concern that the 2020 economic downturn will lead to another foreclosure crisis like the one we experienced after the housing crash a little over a decade ago. However, there’s one major difference this time: a robust forbearance program. During the housing crash of 2006-2008, many felt homeowners should be forced […]

Chances of Another Foreclosure Crisis? “About Zero Percent.”

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 18, 2020

Chances of Another Foreclosure Crisis? “About Zero Percent.” | Simplifying The MarketThere seems to be some concern that the 2020 economic downturn will lead to another foreclosure crisis like the one we experienced after the housing crash a little over a decade ago. However, there’s one major difference this time: a robust forbearance program. During the housing crash of 2006-2008, many felt homeowners should be forced […]

Homes for Sale Are Rapidly Disappearing

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 17, 2020

Homes for Sale Are Rapidly Disappearing | Simplifying The MarketThrough all the challenges of 2020, the real estate market has done very well, and purchasers are continuing to take advantage of historically low mortgage rates. Realtor Magazine just explained: “While winter may be typically a slow season in real estate, economists predict it isn’t likely to happen this year…Low inventories combined with high demand […]

Why Working from Home May Spark Your Next Move

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 16, 2020

Why Working from Home May Spark Your Next Move | Simplifying The MarketIf you’ve been working from home this year, chances are you’ve been at it a little longer than you initially expected. Businesses all over the country have figured out how to operate remotely to keep their employees healthy, safe, and productive. For many, it may be carrying into next year, and possibly beyond. While the […]

Tips to Sell Your House Safely Right Now [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 13, 2020

Some Highlights

Your agent now has over 6 months of experience selling houses during the pandemic and can make the process easier and safer for you today.
COVID-19 protocols and technology usage recommendations from the National Association of Realt…

Winter Will Bring a Flurry of Activity to the Housing Market

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 12, 2020

Winter Will Bring a Flurry of Activity to the Housing Market | Simplifying The MarketIn the second half of this year, the housing market surged with activity. Today, real estate experts are looking ahead to the winter season and the forecast is anything but chilly. As Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors (NAR), notes: “It will be one of the best winter sales years ever.” […]

VA Home Loans: Helping Heroes Find a Home

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 11, 2020

VA Home Loans: Important Housing Benefits for Veterans | Simplifying The MarketToday, on Veterans Day, we honor those who have served our country and thank them for their continued dedication to our nation. In the United States, there are many valuable benefits available to Veterans, including VA home loans. For over 75 years, VA home loans have provided millions of Veterans and their families the opportunity […]

Homeownership Is a Key to Building Wealth

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 10, 2020

Homeownership Is a Key to Building Wealth | Simplifying The MarketFor years, real estate has been considered the best investment you can make. A major reason for this is due to the net worth a household gains through homeownership. In fact, according to the 2019 Survey of Consumer Finance Data from the Federal Reserve, for the average homeowner: “…a primary home accounts for 90% of […]

Is it Safe to Sell My House Right Now?

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 9, 2020

Is it Safe to Sell My House Right Now? | Simplifying The MarketIn today’s real estate market, the buzz is all about how it’s a great time to sell your house. Buyer demand is high, and there simply aren’t enough homes available to buy to meet that growing need. This means now is the time to make a move so you can close the deal on your […]

Making a Home for the Brave Possible [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 6, 2020

Some Highlights

VA Home Loans provide unique opportunities for Veterans, active-duty personnel, and their families in recognition of their service to our Nation.
For eligible individuals, options associated with VA Loans can help make the dream of h…

Why the 2021 Forecast Doesn’t Call for a Foreclosure Crisis

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 5, 2020

Why the 2021 Forecast Doesn’t Call for a Foreclosure Crisis | Simplifying The MarketAs the current forbearance mortgage relief options come to an end, many are wondering if we’ll face a foreclosure crisis next year. This is understandable, especially for those who remember the housing crisis that began in 2008. The reality is, plans have been put in place through forbearance to ensure history doesn’t repeat itself. This […]

Real Estate Is a Driving Force in the Economy

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 4, 2020

Real Estate Is a Driving Force in the Economy | Simplifying The MarketAs the economy recovers from this year’s health crisis, the housing market is playing a leading role in the turnaround. It’s safe to say that what we call “home” is taking on a new meaning, causing many of us to consider buying or selling sooner rather than later. Housing, therefore, has thrived in an otherwise […]

Rent vs. Buy: How to Decide What’s Best for You

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 3, 2020

Rent vs. Buy: How to Decide What’s Best for You | Simplifying The MarketAccording to the U.S. Census Bureau, median rent continues to rise. With today’s low mortgage rates, there’s great opportunity for current renters to make a move into homeownership that stretches each dollar a little bit further. While the best timeline to buy a home is different for everyone, the question remains: Should I continue renting […]

4 Reasons Why the Election Won’t Dampen the Housing Market

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | November 2, 2020

4 Reasons Why the Election Won’t Dampen the Housing Market | Simplifying The MarketTomorrow, Americans will decide our President for the next four years. That decision will have a major impact on many aspects of life in this country, but the residential real estate market will not be one of them. Analysts will try to measure the impact feasible changes in regulations might have on housing, the effect […]

Should I Renovate My House Before I Sell It? [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 30, 2020

Some Highlights

In today’s hyper-competitive market, buyers are often willing to overlook cosmetic or minor repair needs if it means snagging a home in their price range.
With so few houses available for sale today, you may be able to skip the bigge…

Three Ways Low Inventory Is a Win for Sellers

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 29, 2020

Three Ways Low Inventory Is a Win for Sellers | Simplifying The MarketThe number of houses for sale today is significantly lower than the high buyer activity in the current housing market. According to Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of Realtors (NAR): “There is no shortage of hopeful, potential buyers, but inventory is historically low.” When the demand for homes is higher than what’s […]

Buyer Interest Is Growing among Younger Generations

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 28, 2020

Buyer Interest Is Growing among Younger Generations | Simplifying The MarketThe demand for homes this year is extraordinary as record-breaking numbers of hopeful buyers continue to shop for homes. In a normal year, the peak homebuying season comes to a close by early fall. However, 2020 is anything but a normal year, and the housing market is no exception. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the […]

How Down Payment Assistance Opens the Door to Homeownership

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 27, 2020

How Down Payment Assistance Opens the Door to Homeownership | Simplifying The MarketMany people are eager to buy a home right now while affordability continues to be a highlight of the current housing market. However, a recent survey by Sparks Research shows that 20% of first-time homebuyers cite a lack of financial education as a barrier to homeownership. This is definitely understandable. If you don’t feel comfortable […]

Two Important Impacts of Home Equity

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 26, 2020

Two Important Impacts of Home Equity | Simplifying The MarketEquity continues to rise, helping American homeowners secure a much more stable financial future. According to the most recent data from CoreLogic, the average homeowner gained $9,800 in equity over the past year. In addition, experts project 2020 home prices to continue rising. With prices going up, equity gains will also keep accelerating. Black Knight […]

Selling Your House Is the Right Move, Right Now [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 23, 2020

Some Highlights

Demand from homebuyers has skyrocketed this year, which means today’s sellers are poised to win big. This ideal moment in time to sell your house won’t last forever, though.
With more sellers coming to the market in the spring, waiti…

Home Values Projected to Keep Rising

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 22, 2020

Home Values Projected to Keep Rising | Simplifying The MarketAs we enter the final months of 2020 and continue to work through the challenges this year has brought, some of us wonder what impact continued economic uncertainty could have on home prices. Looking at the big picture, the rules of supply and demand will give us the clearest idea of what is to come. […]

Home Values Projected to Keep Rising

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 22, 2020

Home Values Projected to Keep Rising | Simplifying The MarketAs we enter the final months of 2020 and continue to work through the challenges this year has brought, some of us wonder what impact continued economic uncertainty could have on home prices. Looking at the big picture, the rules of supply and demand will give us the clearest idea of what is to come. […]

Why Today’s Options Will Save Homeowners from Foreclosure

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 21, 2020

Why Today’s Options Will Save Homeowners from Foreclosure | Simplifying The MarketMany housing experts originally voiced concern that the mortgage forbearance program (which allows families impacted financially by COVID to delay mortgage payments to a later date) could lead to an increase in foreclosures when forbearances end. Some originally forecasted that up to 30% of homeowners would choose to enter forbearance. Less than 10% actually did, […]

Americans Are Gaining Confidence in the Economy

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 20, 2020

Americans Are Gaining Confidence in the Economy | Simplifying The MarketThe September Jobs Report issued by the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the unemployment rate dropped to 7.9%. Though that percentage is well below what experts projected earlier this year, it still means millions of people are without work. There’s no way to minimize the tremendous impact this pandemic-induced recession continues to have on […]

Real Estate Continues to Show Unprecedented Strength This Year

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 19, 2020

Real Estate Continues to Show Unprecedented Strength This Year | Simplifying The MarketThe 2020 housing market has surpassed all expectations and continues to drive the nation’s economic recovery. The question is, will this positive trend continue throughout the rest of the year, especially given the uncertainty around the current health crisis, the upcoming election, and more? Here’s a look at what several industry-leading experts have to say. […]

How to Prepare for a Bidding War [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 16, 2020

Some Highlights

With so few houses available on the market today, being ready for a bidding war is essential for prospective homebuyers.
From pre-approval to making your best offer, here are three tips to make sure you can act quickly and confidentl…

Do You Need to Know More about Forbearance and Mortgage Relief Options?

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 15, 2020

Do You Need to Know More about Forbearance and Mortgage Relief Options? | Simplifying The MarketEarlier this year when the nation pressed pause on the economy and unemployment rates jumped up significantly, many homeowners were immediately concerned about being able to pay their mortgages, and understandably so. To assist in this challenging time, two protection plans were put into place to help support those in need. First, there was a […]

The #1 Reason Not to Wait to List Your House for Sale

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 14, 2020

The #1 Reason Not to Wait to List Your House for Sale | Simplifying The MarketMany industries have been devastated by the economic shutdown caused by the COVID-19 virus. Real estate is not one of them. Mark Fleming, Chief Economist for First American, just reported: “Since hitting a low point during the initial stages of the pandemic, the only major industry to display immunity to the economic impacts of the […]

Do You Have Enough Money Saved for a Down Payment?

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 13, 2020

Do You Have Enough Money Saved for a Down Payment? | Simplifying The MarketOne of the biggest misconceptions for first-time homebuyers is how much you’ll need to save for a down payment. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t always have to put 20% down to buy a house. Here’s how it breaks down. A recent survey by Point2Homes mentions that 74% of millennials (ages 25-40) say they’re interested […]

6 Reasons You’ll Win by Selling with a Real Estate Agent This Fall

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 12, 2020

6 Reasons You’ll Win by Selling with a Real Estate Agent This Fall | Simplifying The MarketThere are many benefits to working with a real estate professional when selling your house. During challenging times, like what we face today, it becomes even more important to have an expert you trust to help guide you through the process. If you’re considering selling on your own, known in the industry as a For Sale […]

Thinking of Moving? [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 9, 2020

Some Highlights

If you’re ready to sell your house but you’re worried about finding one to move into, why not invest in a brand-new home built just for you?
New construction is on the rise, so it’s a great time to think about a custom home to fit yo…

Should You Buy a Retirement Home Sooner Rather than Later?

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 8, 2020

Should You Buy a Retirement Home Sooner Rather than Later? | Simplifying The MarketEvery day in the U.S., roughly 10,000 people turn 65. Prior to the health crisis that swept the nation in 2020, most people had to wait until they retired to make a move to the beach, the golf course, or the senior living community they were looking to settle into for their later years in […]

A Homeowner’s Net Worth Is 40x Greater Than a Renter’s

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 7, 2020

A Homeowner’s Net Worth Is 40x Greater Than a Renter’s | Simplifying The MarketOne of the best ways to build your family’s financial future is through homeownership. Recent data from the Federal Reserve indicates the net worth of a homeowner is actually over 40 times greater than that of a renter. Maybe it’s time to start thinking about buying a home, especially when they’re so affordable in today’s […]

Is it Time to Move into a Single-Story Home?

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 6, 2020

Is it Time to Move into a Single-Story Home? | Simplifying The MarketOnce the kids have left the nest, you may be wondering what to do with all of the extra space in your home. Chances are, you don’t need four bedrooms anymore, and it may be a great time to sell your house and downsize, maybe even into a single-story home. You’ve likely gained significant equity […]

Why Pricing Your House Right Is Essential

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 5, 2020

Why Pricing Your House Right Is Essential | Simplifying The MarketIn today’s real estate market, setting the right price for your house is one of the most valuable things you can do. According to the U.S. Economic Outlook by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), existing home prices nationwide are forecasted to increase 4.7% in 2020 and 4.1% in 2021. This means experts anticipate home […]

Rising Home Equity Can Power Your Next Move [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 2, 2020

Some Highlights

According to CoreLogic, homeowners across the country are gaining significant equity.
Over the past year, the average homeowner gained $9,800 in equity, growing their overall net worth.
If you’re ready to sell your house and begin lo…

Buyers Are Finding More Space in the Luxury Home Market

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | October 1, 2020

Buyers Are Finding More Space in the Luxury Home Market | Simplifying The MarketA year ago, additional space and extra amenities had a very different feel for homebuyers. Today, the health crisis has brought to light how valuable more square footage and carefully designed floorplans can be. Home offices, multi-purpose rooms, gyms, and theaters are becoming more popular, and some families are finding the space they need for […]

Why Selling this Fall May Be Your Best Move

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 30, 2020

Why Selling this Fall May Be Your Best Move | Simplifying The MarketIf you’re thinking about moving, selling your house this fall might be the way to go. Here are four highlights in the housing market that may make your decision to sell this fall an easy one. 1. Buyers Are Actively in the Market ShowingTime, a leading real estate showing software and market stat service provider, […]

Where Are Home Values Headed Over the Next 12 Months?

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 29, 2020

Where Are Home Values Headed Over the Next 12 Months? | Simplifying The MarketAs shelter-in-place orders were implemented earlier this year, many questioned what the shutdown would mean to the real estate market. Specifically, there was concern about home values. After years of rising home prices, would 2020 be the year this appreciation trend would come to a screeching halt? Even worse, would home values begin to depreciate? […]

Housing Market on Track to Beat Last Year’s Success

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 28, 2020

Housing Market on Track to Beat Last Year’s Success | Simplifying The MarketBack in March, as the nation’s economy was shut down because of the coronavirus, many were predicting the real estate market would face a major collapse. Some forecasts called for a 15-20% decline in transactions. However, six months later, it seems as though the housing market has fully recovered. Mark Fleming, Chief Economist at First […]

Why Pricing Your Home Right Matters This Fall [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 25, 2020

Some Highlights

As a seller today, you may think pricing your home on the high end will result in a higher final sale price, but the opposite is actually true.
To sell your home quickly and for the best possible price, you should eliminate buyer con…

Home Equity Give Sellers Options in Today’s Market

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 24, 2020

Home Equity Give Sellers Options in Today’s Market | Simplifying The MarketHomeownership is one of the best ways to invest in your financial future, especially as your home equity grows. Home equity is a form of forced savings that can work to your advantage as the value of your home appreciates. Across the country, home equity was increasing before the health crisis swept our nation, and […]

Home Builder Confidence Hits All-Time Record

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 23, 2020

Home Builder Confidence Hits All-Time Record | Simplifying The MarketLast week, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reported their Housing Market Index (HMI) hit an all-time high in the 35-year history of the series with a score of 83. The index gauges builder perceptions of current single-family home sales and sale expectations for the next six months, as well as the traffic of […]

The Cost of a Home Is Far More Important than the Price

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 22, 2020

The Cost of a Home Is Far More Important than the Price | Simplifying The MarketHousing inventory is at an all-time low. There are 39% fewer homes for sale today than at this time last year, and buyer demand continues to set records. Zillow recently reported: “Newly pending sales are up 25.5% compared to the same week last year, the highest year-over-year increase in the weekly Zillow database.” Whenever there […]

Is the Economic Recovery Beating All Projections?

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 21, 2020

Is the Economic Recovery Beating All Projections? | Simplifying The MarketEarlier this year, many economists and market analysts were predicting an apocalyptic financial downturn that would potentially rattle the U.S. economy for years to come. They immediately started to compare it to the Great Depression of a century ago. Six months later, the economy is still trying to stabilize, but it is evident that the […]

Homes Across the Country Are Selling Fast [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 18, 2020

Some Highlights

Buyers are actively searching for and purchasing homes at a record-breaking pace. According to the latest report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), in July, 68% of homes were on the market for less than a month.
With ho…

How Low Inventory May Impact the Housing Market This Fall

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 17, 2020

How Low Inventory May Impact the Housing Market This Fall | Simplifying The MarketReal estate continues to be called the ‘bright spot’ in the current economy, but there’s one thing that may hold the housing market back from achieving its full potential this year: the lack of homes for sale. Buyers are actively searching for and purchasing homes, looking to capitalize on today’s historically low interest rates, but […]

How Low Inventory May Impact the Housing Market This Fall

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 17, 2020

How Low Inventory May Impact the Housing Market This Fall | Simplifying The MarketReal estate continues to be called the ‘bright spot’ in the current economy, but there’s one thing that may hold the housing market back from achieving its full potential this year: the lack of homes for sale. Buyers are actively searching for and purchasing homes, looking to capitalize on today’s historically low interest rates, but […]

The Surging Real Estate Market Continues to Climb

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 16, 2020

The Surging Real Estate Market Continues to Climb | Simplifying The MarketEarlier this year, realtor.com announced the release of the Housing Recovery Index, a weekly guide showing how the pandemic has impacted the residential real estate market. The index leverages a weighted average of four key components of the housing industry by tracking each of the following: Housing Demand – Growth in online search activity Home […]

Is Now a Good Time to Move?

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 15, 2020

Is Now a Good Time to Move? | Simplifying The MarketHow long have you lived in your current home? If it’s been a while, you may be thinking about moving. According to the latest Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), in 2019, homeowners were living in their homes for an average of 10 years. That’s a long time […]

Two New Surveys Indicate Urban to Suburban Lean

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 14, 2020

Two New Surveys Indicate Urban to Suburban Lean | Simplifying The MarketThere has been much talk around the possibility that Americans are feeling less enamored with the benefits of living in a large city and now may be longing for the open spaces that suburban and rural areas provide. In a recent Realtor Magazine article, they discussed the issue and addressed comments made by Lawrence Yun, […]

Virtual School Is Changing Homebuyer Needs [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 11, 2020

Some Highlights

With remote learning sweeping the nation this academic year, organized spaces with enough room for kids to learn effectively are high on buyer wish lists.
If you’re trying to make room for your family’s growing needs, multi-purpose r…

Homebuyer Traffic Is on the Rise

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 10, 2020

Homebuyer Traffic Is on the Rise | Simplifying The MarketOne of the biggest surprises of 2020 is the resilience of the residential real estate market. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), is now forecasting that more homes will sell this year than last year. He’s also predicting home sales to increase by 8-12% next year. There’s strong evidence that […]

The Latest Unemployment Rate Fell to 8.4%

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 9, 2020

The Latest Unemployment Rate Fell to 8.4% | Simplifying The MarketLast Friday, the Bureau for Labor Statistics released their Employment Report for August 2020. The big surprise was that the unemployment rate fell to 8.4%, a full percent lower than what many analysts had forecasted earlier in the week. Though it is tough to look at this as great news when millions of Americans are […]

Have You Ever Seen a Housing Market Like This?

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 8, 2020

Have You Ever Seen a Housing Market Like This? | Simplifying The MarketThe year 2020 will certainly be one to remember, with new realities and norms that changed the way we live. This year’s real estate market is certainly no exception to that shift, with historic highlights continuing to break records and challenge what many thought possible in the housing market. Here’s a look at four key […]

Thank You, Essential Workers

By Marie Miller and Vera Jacques | September 7, 2020

To all essential workers on this Labor Day, thank you.