Category Archives: Homes for Sale

Beautiful Whitney Ranch Home

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This beautiful Whitney Ranch home can be yours! One of the most desirable floorplans, features a bedroom & full bathroom downstairs – great for guests, 3 bedrooms and a loft upstairs. Luxurious hardwood floors through most of the down stairs. Formal living and dining room areas, plus a family room. The kitchen includes upgraded cabinets with nickel knobs, a full backsplash with designer tile accents, and solid surface counter tops that never need to be sealed. The backyard was recently redesigned; and is great for water conservation. Just across the street is a lovely cul-de-sac; and a short walk to the local neighborhood park. Whitney Ranch is home to award-winning Sunset Ranch Elementary and Whitney High. Enjoy the benefits of the Ranch House with pool and clubhouse.

1st Open House Saturday, March 27, 2015 from noon to 4 PM. Stop by and see us.

BETTER THAN A BRAND NEW HOME!!

A RARE FIND IN WHITNEY RANCH

Built in May 2013, get the best quality features of a new home, plus all the options, window treatments and landscaping that you would typically pay more for. It’s all included in this beautiful home. Located at the end of a quiet cul-de-sac, you can expect minimal traffic; great for families with kids.

The first showings are scheduled for an open house on Saturday, June 10, 2015 from noon to 5 PM.  Click the link below for more infomation.  Hope to see you there!

For great pictures and more information go to:   www.WhitneyRanchGem.com

Rare find in Whitney Ranch
Rare find in Whitney Ranch

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Real Estate Market Trends: Placer County

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After a booming 2013, the Placer County real estate market has been somewhat subdued so far this year. While actual sales are down each month this year compared to 2013, the larger impact has been the increase in available homes for sale.

In July 2013 there were 930 homes available for sale in Placer County compared to 1454 in July 2014. Closed home sales were at 583 in July 2013 vs. 528 in July 2014. Perhaps the good news is that pending sales were up with 488 home gone pending in July 2013 vs 586 homes pending in July 2014.  The real estate activity in Rocklin, Roseville and Lincoln is also in line with Placer County.

The pendulum is always swinging and what I believe we are seeing is a somewhat typical transition to a normal market. 2013 was so strong that it is reasonable to see the pendulum swing in the other direction. In fact, it’s probably a good thing when you think of the alternative being a run-away market with prices escalating and pushing us into another bust cycle too early.

Of course, all this data is generalized. Lower priced homes have maintained momentum better than higher priced homes, as is to be expected. In addition, the change on January 1, 2014 in the maximum FHA loan limit (dropping from $580,000 in 2013 to $474,950 in 2014) took a hit on home prices mostly in the $500’s.

To further challenge the market, many home sellers expect to be able to sell their home for more than the neighbor’s home that sold earlier this year. While this may be appropriate in the $250K price range, we have seen little or no price appreciation this year in the $400,000+ market in 2014. So these homes hit the market overpriced and ultimately the prices must be reduced to market level. It doesn’t necessarily mean that home prices are declining, but it does infer that if you want to sell your home in today’s real estate market, you must price it using good comparable properties and not shoot for “pie in the sky dreams.”

The remainder of 2014 will give us a good idea of how the selling season will take off next year. I expect that we will see sales pick up over the next few months and will likely drop off over the holidays. By February 2015 I expect to see inventories start to drop again and that we will see marginal appreciation next year. The one wild card is whether or not interest rates stay low. A 1% increase in interest rate will put pressure on home values since this will push buyers into lower priced homes.

Hope this gives you an idea of where our local real estate market trends are heading.

To see charts for Placer County as well as Roseville, Rocklin, and Lincoln, please click on this link:    Real Estate Market Trends for Placer_Rocklin_Roseville, Lincoln

Real Estate Market Trends – Rocklin, Roseville, Lincoln

trend chart_012014 As we approach the 2014 selling season, I’ve received questions about how this year will unfold compared to the banner year we had in 2013. In a normal market, the main selling season runs from about February through May or June. Last year we experienced a strong market that carried over from 2012. Prices increased substantially, inventory levels were extremely low, and it was common to see homes selling in the first week of being listed with multiple offers; many offers above the asking price.

As prices have risen, more homeowners are now sitting in equity positions. Many wanted to move but sat on the sidelines waiting for the opportunity to sell their home as prices rose. In June/July 2013 interest rates jumped up. That event, and the fact that we were exiting the selling season, slowed market absorption. In the 2nd half of 2013, many owners put their homes on the market after the run up in prices. In many cases, these homes were priced with the assumption that prices were continuing to increase every month as was experienced in the first half of the year. Where does that leave us?

Every area is different. Lower priced homes in Placer and Sacramento Counties continue to see high demand and low inventory. However, homes in higher priced areas are trending toward (or perhaps are already in) what is typical of normal market conditions. In higher priced areas, home appreciation has been very subdued over the last six months. These homes are not seeing multiple offers as they did one year ago, it’s taking much longer to sell those homes, and inventory levels are up.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying the market is declining. But I am saying that indicators point to higher inventory levels in 2014, slower price appreciation, and sellers should expect that it will take longer to sell their home than it did in 2013; unless the home is in the lower priced areas or offers something highly desirable and considered a one-of-a-kind offering. Those owners who are considering selling their home will do well to find an excellent real estate agent who will guide them in pricing their home appropriately. Otherwise, “frustration” may be the word of the day.

Below I’ve included some charts for the 95765 zip code. This demonstrates where we are in the market now as we approach the selling season. If you would like to view charts on other surrounding areas, please visit our website: www.quarantarealestate.com. Click on the Market Trends Reports in the left column. If you have questions about these or other areas, feel free to contact us.  And remember, Real Estate Market Trends are fluid and can change on a dime.
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ANOTHER HOUSING BUBBLE?

New Housing Bubble Coming?

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Another Housing Bubble Coming?

Are we entering another real estate market “bubble?” Some folks I talk to believe that prices have risen too quickly and that it will all come crashing down again.  Recent history will tell us that no one knows what the future holds in this regard.  Pricing in the market is one factor for consideration, but the strength of the market is determined by much more.  Not only can our politicians make new  laws with unintended results, but major catastrophic or world economic events can affect the US real estate market.  Here are some facts to help you decide where we are in the real estate cycle.

While prices have risen dramatically over the last year, they are nowhere near the highest prices that were  seen just prior to the downturn.  Many areas have seen 20%+ appreciation over the last year which is driven by demand.  I don’t expect us to see appreciation continue at that rate over the next year because of several factors but it will be a while before we see equilibrium between supply and demand.

ALL loans available today require documentation of a buyer’s ability to repay the loan.  Lenders require much more information from buyers today before approving a loan.  Long gone are the stated income loans (aka: liar loans) that allowed buyers to merely pull numbers out of a hat to qualify for a home loan (of course, that doesn’t mean they won’t come back).  When I was VP of Sales for Lennar’s Northern California Division, I can’t tell you how many times buyers made loan applications with our “in-house” lender and were declined; only to have the buyer return with a stated income loan approval from another lender.  Hmmm, let me see; did their income go up in just few short days? The point is that loans originated today are more sound and more likely to be repaid than in the past.

Most local market areas have  1.5- 2.0 month’s supply of inventory of homes for sale. A market in equilibrium between supply and demand will have 3-6 months of inventory available at any time.  In other words, if there were no additional homes placed on the market for sale, it would take 3-6 months to sell everything that was currently available.  We are seeing a trend toward equilibrium but we are still in a seller’s market and it will likely be several months before supply and demand are equal.

Short sales and foreclosures as a percentage of total sales are way down.  These sales tend to sell at lower prices.  So one reason that median price has increased is merely because there are fewer short and foreclosure sales in the market.  In addition, this demonstrates that the market is building real strength.

Interest rates are up 1% or more since the beginning of the summer.  This will tend to push home sales toward equilibrium in a seller’s market.  Rates will likely creep up over the next 12 months, however, it is expected that rates will stay relatively low compared to historic highs.

While short and foreclosures sales are down, traditional sales are up. Why? Because the price increases we have seen in the market allow homeowners to sell their homes without credit impairment and in some cases, actually making a few bucks along the way.  And most of these sellers will be new buyers in the market.

While there are many external factors that can affect the stability and strength of the real estate market, there is no evidence, at this time, that would lead us to believe we are in a “bubble” or even close to being there.  As more inventory comes into the market, the rate of home price appreciation is slowing yet demand is still strong.  Barring unforeseen circumstances, there is every reason to believe that we are headed toward a more stable market with reasonable price appreciation and inventory. In other words, we are heading in the direction of equilibrium, not of another crash.

Steve Quaranta
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate

INTEREST RATES JUMP 1%!

rising interest ratesAfter Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke’s address last week, stocks dropped and interest rates increased.

As recent as a month ago, it was still possible for a home buyer to purchase a home with an interest rate of between 3% and 3.5%. Today, rates are generally floating around 4.5% or higher. In the big picture of housing interest rates, 4.5% is still an excellent rate, but we’ve all been spoiled in recent years and this change does impact the housing market. Let’s take a look at how this rise in interest rates is affecting the purchasing power of potential homebuyers in the marketplace by way of an example.

Let’s say that a buyer is qualified to purchase a home priced up to $400,000, assume that the buyer is putting 10% down and then look at payments under two interest rate scenarios as follows:

Purchase Price: $400,000
10% Downpayment: $ 40,000
90% Loan Amount: $360,000

Monthly Principle & Interest Payments
At an interest rate of 3.5% : $1617
At an interest rate of 4.5%: $1824
Increase in Monthly Payment: $ 207

Assuming that $360,000 was the maximum loan amount that our buyer could qualify for at 3.5% with a payment of $1617, what is the new price that our homebuyer can now afford? The new maximum loan amount based on a payment of $1617 and an interest rate of 4.5% is $319,133. With 10% down, the buyer’s maximum price is now $354,592 or $45,408 less in price.

Is it reasonable to think this will affect demand on the housing market? IT SURE IS! Our homebuyer’s purchasing power just went down by more than 11% with a 1% increase in interest rate. Whatever risk concerns have been in the past about price declines in the market, a 1% increase in rate overshadows to a great deal any decline in market price.

Will prices continue to increase at the rate we seen over the last several months. I’m seeing a change in the market now with prices leveling off through the summer. While it’s reasonable to assume we will see prices continue to rise, I don’t believe we will see the rate of appreciation continue at the fevered pace of the last year. Will interest rates be higher than 4.5% by June of 2014. Who knows? I have talked to several lenders and they are at odds with each other on this point.  Any potential buyer or seller should at least be prepared for the potential of higher rates over the next year.

If you are looking to buy a home in today’s market and have been pre-approved on a home loan through a lender, it’s a good idea to huddle back up with that lender to determine if you need to adjust your considerations on price, square footage and potential location.

If you are a homeowner thinking of placing your home on the market, it is important to understand the impact of rising interest rates, buyer’s purchasing power and negative impacts on demand.  Bottom line: Price your home appropriately and rely on the advice of a Real Estate Agent you trust who will provide you the facts about pricing and marketing your home.

Steve Quaranta
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estateimage003
Email: steveq@teamq-re.com
Phone: 916-276-7653