This is Price-Reduced.com where we talk a lot about real estate and a little about life.
Want to dig deeper? Find helpful and interesting links by reading the transcript version of this podcast.
What technology might be the biggest disrupter for change in the real estate industry? The internet along with cell phones show you 3D tours, photos, and aerial videos of homes. What could impact real estate more than that? Probably self driving cars! There are several articles that give an interesting perspective on this. What if you had to sell your home due to a disability that limited your freedom to drive to the store, hospital, or even work? You might not have that same challenge in the near future. You could even live out in the country knowing you can sleep or work on your way to the office. Imagine all of the parking spaces that can be turned into building lots if there was a public self driving transportation that kept moving people around without having to stay parked all day.
If you think self driving cars and the benefits they offer are still out into the future, Forbes put a panel of experts together about their “Near-Future Real Estate Predictions.” If you live in Dallas Texas, be prepared to face off with cars marked as a “Driverless Vehicle”.
Want an interactive graph comparing real estate values between your choice of two of forty four comparable cities across the globe? Pick any quarter back as far as 1990 and compare it to one as recent as the first quarter of 2018. You can compare housing prices to disposable income for those time periods. You can choose from twenty of the largest U.S. cities plus see house prices against rents as well. Who ever knew that learning could be so much fun!
The New York times has a great article on real estate in France and particularly Normandy. Imagine a two bedroom cottage for $125,000. or how about a 17th Century Estate on 10 acres for $1.58 million. With a dip in values the number of interested buyers is increasing as reflected by a 15% increase in number of sale in 2017 over 2016.
In what City have prices reduced by 2.9% through September yet had a 12.5% increase in prospective buyers enter the market in the third quarter of this year compared to last? Can you guess? London it is! Although Brexit might have something to do with what is happening in real estate, would this pattern still apply to other cities around the world as prices settle downward?
When it comes to Luxury Real Estate, do you know what city in the world had the biggest percentage drop? It was Vancouver B.C. where values dropped 11% and the number of sales down by 36%. Contrast that with Singapore where values increased by 13% end of September compared to the same time one year earlier.
As you or your friends consider buying or selling a home what should your timing be? Now? Or six months from now. If the agent you are talking to says you should buy now before rates go up, is that a “Pressure Tactic” or “Fiscal Responsibility”.
Interest rates are a funny thing. We call a lender and ask what the rate is today, as if one rate fits all. What could possibly affect the response we hear? Type of loan or financing, amount we have for a down payment, credit score, assets, length of the loan and even the financial institution itself.
With the recent interest rate increases you might feel like you missed the boat and rates are pricing you out of the market. If you feel that way, only because you don’t want to pay more for your loan, you may find that historically speaking, borrowing money at today’s rates is still a good thing. View this chart and move your cursor along various data points to see what U.S. mortgage rates have done over the last forty seven years. It is really only the last ten years we saw rates around 5% and below.
Let’s take more of a world picture and see if we are among the more fortunate of home buyers. Numbeo has a chart reflecting 20 year fixed rate mortgage interest rates in countries around the world. The top rate is in Argentina at 27.68%. That probably takes any thought of borrowing money for a home out of your mind. China is in the 5% range, New Zealand, Australia and the US in the fours, Romania, the United Kingdom and Canada in the threes, Hong Kong and Italy in the twos, and Germany, France, Switzerland and Japan in the ones. Over ninety cities are included.
If you borrowed $300,000. your principal and interest payment with the 20 year example would be $1,380. at 1.0%, $1,980. at 5%, $2,895. at 10%, and $5,096. at 20%.
What happens when California has prices so high, that the median price of $600,000. is affordable to only 25% of the population? They move to places like Boise Idaho where 29% of those viewing a home there on Realtor.com are from California.
Are you a numbers cruncher? Do you want to know the difference between a seasonal slump and a more pronounced downturn? Real Estate agents may sense a market change before it is confirmed by the numbers, but if you want to know what the numbers mean, and what they don’t mean, it is always fun talk to an appraiser. They are the number crunchers in the real estate industry and one appraiser whose insights and data presentations I find fascinating is Ryan Lundquist in Sacramento. Here are two articles worth reading. One is entitled “How would you know if the market was starting to tank?” and the second more recent one “Slumping volume & rising inventory.”
If you prefer watching or listening to a video rather than read an article, Ryan has a recent video entitled “What’s The Market Doing.” Even though he is talking about the Sacramento real estate market, if you listen to what he says and how he interprets the data, you will be able to apply what you learn to your local market.
EYE WITNESS TESTIMONY
Buying or selling a home involves a large number of calls, meetings, and pages of paperwork.
The question is, how accurate is your memory?
Let’s look at your memory from another perspective for a moment.
You are in a park enjoying yourself and decide to watch a street performer doing card tricks. You watch the cards move around and are asked to choose a specific card. While you are engaged with the card trick, you look up and see there is some arguing going on and one of those people gets robbed.
How good is your memory? As an eye witness, someone who was there, can you accurately recall what happened? If you have the time, watch this video produced by “Brain Games” and as you interact, you will find out just how accurate your memory is.
In an article entitled “The science of why eyewitness testimony is often wrong” you will learn a few reasons why, when DNA evidence helped overturn a conviction, eye witness testimony was wrong 70% of the time. Does just recalling an event alter what you recall? Learn about how we fill in blank spots so that what we saw makes sense.
Was that book shelf in the house you just saw free standing or bolted to the wall? The answer may make a difference between it being included in your home purchase and having to go out and find another one just like it because it was exactly what you wanted.
How about that beautiful exquisite mirror in the bathroom? Staying or disappearing?
That is why the real estate process and agreed to terms need to be in writing. Less room for misunderstanding. When you go through the house or discuss terms, it is kind of like a doctors appointment, it always makes sense to have someone besides yourself there. Bring a friend or relative along so you have a more in depth understanding of what you saw, or what was said and then reduce that to writing.
In real estate, as in life, if you are the only eye witness, how accurate is your memory going to be?
Thank you for listening to Price-Reduced.com and always remember, financially speaking, “When it comes to real estate, the best time to buy or sell, is when you don’t have to.”