A Holiday Greeting and Some Helpful Real Estate Tips

With the holiday season finally here, I wanted to wish you and your family the best. I also wanted to give you a few tips about our market.

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As we head toward the end of the year, I first wanted to say thanks. We are so close to hitting our yearly goal of 120 transactions, and it’s all thanks to you. Even if we don't quite get to 120, we are going to be pretty darn close. We are honored that you have trusted us with your business, whether you have closed transactions with us this year or sent a referral our way.

Before the year is over, however, I want to quickly share three things with you to keep an eye on as we head into the new year:

1. Interest rates are on the rise. Historically, they are still low. Early in my career, I saw rates in the 13% to 15% range. To have rates right now in the 4% range is still fantastic news for home buyers. However, rates are only expected to go up from here. If you’ve been thinking about buying, now may be the time to get off the fence and lock in a low rate. The more rates increase, the more your affordability goes down.

2. The shortage of inventory in Vero Beach is staggering. If a home is priced well when it’s listed, it will sell quickly in our market. As we approach the spring, we will start seeing more competition for homes. By selling now, you can avoid that competition and still get top dollar for your home.

3. The weather. We are enjoying some fabulous weather here right now. Today’s temperature was 73, and it was sunny and beautiful. If you’re somewhere cold and snowy, come down to Vero Beach and see what living here in the winter is like. We would love to share with you why we love this place and everything it has to offer you.

I hope you and your family have a merry Christmas.

That being said, I also want to wish you and your family a merry Christmas and a very happy New Year. May you be blessed with good tidings in 2017. If you have any questions for me in the meantime, don’t hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I would love to hear from you!

Expert Lending Advice from Shannon Pohl

Today I’m here with Shannon Pohl from Caliber Home Loans to discuss interest rates, homestead exemptions, and pre-approvals. 

Looking to buy in Vero Beach? Get a Full Home Search 
Looking to sell in Vero Beach? Get a Free Home Price Evaluation

Today I’m here with Shannon Pohl from Caliber Home Loans. Shannon has been a lender in Vero Beach for 15 years, and she has some advice to share with all of you buyers out there today.

First of all, let’s talk about interest rates. Rates are still phenomenal right now and continue to hover in the 4% range. This July, we had the lowest interest rates ever. The T-Bill in July was down to 1.37, and now it’s at 2.3, which might not mean much to the average consumer. Rates back in July were at 3.75%, and now they are in the 4% range.

Even factoring in these historically low interest rates, the 45-year average for interest rates was 8.25%, which means today's rates are still incredible!

That said, experts expect that interest rates will continue to rise. As interest rates go up, purchasing power goes down. For instance, you may be able to afford a $400,000 house right now with a 4% interest rate. If rates go up to 4.5%, you would only be able to afford a $350,000 house.

Interest rates are still phenomenally low.

If you want to qualify for a homestead exemption, you still have time to close before the end of the year. When you get the homestead exemption, the value of your primary residence cannot increase by more than 3% each year. Now you have a great chance to fix in a low interest rate and cap your taxes.

Shannon and Caliber Home Loans can also help you get pre-approved. Shannon cannot stress the importance of using a local lender enough. For instance, when you get pre-approved at Caliber Home Loans, you will be thoroughly vetted by an underwriter. That makes your pre-approved offer as good as cash pending the appraisal, which we can get to you within 48 hours. That gives you a lot of buying power, especially in a market like this with a lot of cash buyers.

If you just get pre-qualified, keep in mind that even the best client can run into disputes with their credit down the road. A pre-approval is the best way to go.

If you have any questions for Shannon, you can call her on her cell at 772-360-6030. You can also call Caliber Home Loans at 772-226-6300 or visit their website. As always, if you have any real estate questions for me, just give me a call or send me an email. We would be happy to help you!