2008 COBA Tour of Homes

16 07 2008

The time has come once again for the Central Oregon Builders Association’s Tour of Homes

July 18,19,20 and July 25,26,27, 2008

20th Annual Central Oregon Builders Association Tour of HomesTM

The Central Oregon Builders Association (COBA) is pleased to present the 20th Annual 2008 Tour of HomesTM sponsored by Columbia River Bank. The field of 73 homes is set for the 2008 Tour, and we anxiously await the tour dates of July 18, 19, 20 and July 25, 26, 27. Hours for the tour this year will be the same as past years Fridays Noon – 6, Saturdays & Sundays 10-6. Remembering that it will be the height of summer, we advise attendees to dress appropriately and to bring plenty of water in their cars.

The 20th Annual 2008 Tour of HomesTM tour guide will be available in each Tour home as well as being delivered in The Bulletin right before the Tour begins. If you are interested in advertising in the tour guide please contact The Bulletin at 382-1811.

The 20th Annual 2008 COBA Tour of HomesTM is annually presented in July with the generous support of our sponsors. The 20th Annual 2008 Tour of HomesTM is sponsored by Columbia River Bank, and supported by Earth Advantage, The Garner Group, W.L. May Company, Robberson Ford, Deschutes Heating & Cooling, Central Oregon Cable Advertising, The Bulletin, and KOHD News.

The 20th Annual 2008 Tour of HomesTM field is set at 74 homes. Our second largest Tour! Prices on the Tour range from $207,950 to $3,200,000!

I will be holding The Reserve At Broken Top open every day of the tour (Friday 12-6, Saturday 10-6 & Sunday 10-6)

Please come see me!


April MLS Statistics are up

12 05 2008

Statistical Fun

I added a page for the April Multiple Listing Service statistics.

Just a quick run-down of what the numbers say though:

In March the number of pendings was 5.3% of the actives (1892 active listings and 100 that went pending)

In April the number of active listings continues to increase (which means more inventory to get rid of) but the number of pendings increased in a slightly greater percentage than the actives. With 7.7% of the actives going pending.

Keep in mind that trying to compare month-to-month statistics, which are volatile (at best), isn’t necessarily a true indicator of what is going on in the market. The numbers can fluctuate immensely from month-to-month which is why comparing year-end statistics is a more accurate approach. However, since it’s only the beginning of May, and we’re trying to get a handle on what is going on in the market currently we have to work with what we have.

The encouraging section of these statistics are the homes in the $200,000-$350,000 price range (which, if memory serves correctly, was the price range of the majority of new developments that flooded the area over the past couple of years.)  The pendings in this price range are 10.1% of the actives.. still a far-cry from being a thriving Sellers Market.. but there is more inventory moving in this price range than any other. (good news for the first time home-buyers or those wanting to purchase investment homes in this price range)

Click here for the full PDF of statistics

8 Reasons to buy a house

14 04 2008

I have spoken with many people recently who are leery of purchasing a home in the “tumultuous” times that we’re facing. I know that there is a lot of doom and gloom that is broadcast, and there are definitely some changes that need to be made in our economy, but I would also hate to see people miss out on an opportunity to buy a house that might not be available in the future.

In real estate there are always “if only I would have…”s. “if only I would have bought 20 lots back in 1990 when they were dirt cheap” (pardon the pun) “if only I would have sold in 2006 when the market was at it’s peak” “if only I would have refinanced when the rates were so low”.. the list goes on and on…

The bottom line with investing in real estate, especially in Bend, is that you will never regret buying a home. You might regret missing the bottom of the market by a month or so, or you might regret selling a little too late, but never owning a home.

Let me clarify this, you will never regret buying a home that you will live in. There are a lot of people that regret buying houses solely for investment purchases (homes they plan to flip, or rent out, or people that just try to buy low and turn around and sell again) these people are taking risks with their money (what any good investor would do) but, as with any investment, if you don’t stand to lose much, you probably don’t stand to gain much.

Now back to my original statement: You will never regret buying a home that you will live in. The reason for this is multi-faceted:

1. Invest in the Future… If you are currently renting that means you are paying out a specified amount of money every month in which the only return on your money is a place to live. If you purchase you are paying out a specified amount of money every month (sometimes more than renting, but not necessarily.. I’ll post on this later) but you are building equity with every dime you pay in. This means that your payments go toward something you can cash out of in the future (and most likely make money)

2. Tax deduction, tax deduction, tax deduction... Was that clear enough? All of the interest on your mortgage payments, as well as any points you paid in at closing & property taxes are all tax deductible. My husband and I were pretty much exempt from all income tax this year based on this (and a few other things we had working for us). This is an especially important benefit if it makes the difference between you being in a lower tax-bracket, it can literally save you thousands of dollars.

3. Interest rates are still historically low… This makes it relatively inexpensive to take out a mortgage. The lower the interest rate, the less you actually pay for your house and the sooner you can pay the mortgage off. Use a free mortgage calculator like the one at mortgagecalculator.com to get a rough estimate of what you can afford.

4. You don’t have to pay for a realtor… I never cease to be amazed at the number of people that go out house hunting without the aid of realtor, I guarantee if you asked them why they made the decision to go it alone they would tell you it was to save money. But the reality of the situation is that the seller pays the buyers commission, your only obligation as the buyer is to write your agent a thank you note from the comfort of your new home (this isn’t actually an obligation, it’s just super nice). The job of a real estate agent is to look out for their clients’ best interest, so the seller’s agent is looking out for the seller, you need someone that is going to make sure you get the best deal possible.

5. You’ll be able to use the equity in your home for low-cost loans for other purposes… You can access the paid-up equity you accumulate in your home in the form of a home equity loan or a home equity line of credit. Because they are secured, home equity loans and lines of credit generally carry a lower interest rate than other types of consumer loans, such as auto loans. The interest on them is generally tax-deductible, as well.

6. You’ll have the stability and emotional security of owning your own home… No more worrying about dictatorial or negligent landlords, rent increases or the possibility your building will be sold and redeveloped or turned into a condo. You’ll be able to live in your house as long as you like, fix your monthly payments for as long as 30 years and you’ll be in charge.

7. You’ll be able to redecorate and renovate any way you like, any time you like. Rules about the paint colors you can use will be a thing of the past. And you’ll be able to tear out walls, install a powder room and make any other improvements you want. Best of all, if you decide to sell, you’ll recoup at least part of the cost of the improvements.

8. Best buyers market in over 20 years… There are more options and at better prices right now in Bend than there has been in over 20 years. There are new developments going in that are offering brand new homes at unbelievable prices. One example of this is Mirada on the east side of Bend, the developer was able to purchase a large parcel of land at an unbeatable price, therefore he’s out less money and can sell the homes for less. These houses are priced under $200,000 with quality finishes like hardwood floors & tile counter-tops.

There are so many reasons to purchase and an even greater number of great deals to be had.. don’t be one of the ones that looks back on this year and says “if only I had bought a house back then”.