Linda Raymond Real Estate Blog, Fairfield, Westport & More

Fairfield & Westport living- homes, fun stuff & more!


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Fairfield Beach in Review: October 2020

Market Activity on
Fairfield Beach Road, Pine Creek Avenue, & Old Dam Road

What’s On the Market?

Active Beach Listings

Fairfield Beach Road

  • 12 single-family homes are for sale.
  • Five are new construction listings priced from $1,495,000 to $2,995,000. Two have not been built yet.
  • Of note is that there are three new construction listings priced at $2,995,000. One is on more than a third of an acre and sits across from Penfield Beach and the other two are on small lots on the beachfront near the very end of the peninsula.
  • Four properties have a dock on the Pine Creek waterway.
  • Two of the properties have a guest house.

There are no active listings available on Pine Creek Ave or Old Dam Road.

What Sold, Mid-August to Mid-October?

Sold & Accepted Offers

  • Five single-family homes sold at the beach from August 15 through October 15.
  • Two condos sold, one on Fairfield Beach Rd across from the beach for $715,000 and a penthouse on Pine Creek Avenue for $1,125,000.
  • Single-family sale prices ranged from $1,560,000 to $5 million.

What About Accepted Offers?

  • There are currently six accepted offers on Fairfield Beach Rd with prices ranging from $728,000 for a non-beachfront condo to $4,495,000.
  • There is one accepted offer on Pine Creek Avenue for a home priced at $995,000.

Interestingly, compared to last year, the same sales activity occurred during this timeframe.  Five homes sold and two condos sold, one condo on Fairfield Road, and one on Pine Creek Avenue.  However, the sale prices for the single-family beach houses were quite a bit lower, ranging from $700,000 to $1,750,000 last year, mid-August  to mid-October.

So the word on the street is that air may be getting cooler, but the waterfront market remains quite warm!  Who is ready to take a dip? 🙂

 If you have any questions about this market and what it can mean for you, please reach out to me at 203.912.4440, Linda.Raymond@raveis.com , or using the form below.  I’m here to help!


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Fairfield Beach in Review: August 2020

Market Activity on
Fairfield Beach Road –  Pine Creek Avenue – Old Dam Road

What’s On the Market?

Active Beach Listings

Fairfield Beach Road

  • 12 single-family homes are for sale.
  • Four are new construction listings priced from $1,500,000 to $3,200,000. Three are complete and sit across the street from the water. Two are under construction, one on the creek, and one on the beach with a creekside parcel and a dock.
  • Seven of the listings are on direct beachfront and priced from $1,700,000 to $5 million.  Two of these have additional creekside property, and one also has a dock on the creek.
  • There are three creek-front listings priced from $2 million for a home with a dock to $2,570,000 for a new home under construction.

Pine Creek Ave

  • There is one waterfront property for sale for $2,495,000.

Old Dam Road

  • There is one property for sale on about a third of an acre that is not on the waterfront for $875,000.

What Sold, Mid-June to Mid-August?

Sold & accepted offers since mid-June

  • Four single-family homes sold since mid-June including three on Fairfield Beach Road, and one on Old Dam Road.  Two were on the beachfront and two on the waterway.
  • One condo across the street from the water sold on Fairfield Beach Road for $715,000.
  • Single-family sale prices ranged from $700,000 for a home not on the water on Old Dam Road to $3 million for beachfront renovation/new construction on Fairfield Beach Road.

What About Accepted Offers?

  • There are currently two homes under contract, a three-years-young beachfront home on Fairfield Beach Road listed for $2,795,000 and a beachfront condo on Pine Creek Avenue on the market for $1,135,000. 
  • Three homes on the beach have accepted offers with list prices ranging from $1,695,000 to $2,395,000.

1690 Fairfield Beach Rd - Sold

There have been nine sales so far this year through August 15 compared to 14 last year during this timeframe, however the five accepted offers should catch us up. One improvement we have seen this year is the beach homes selling closer to the asking price. On average the nine sales this year closed at 96 percent of the asking price compared to 94% last year.

Still, this year’s beach market has been a bit slow compared to other blazing markets driven by the pandemic. For example, in the entire Fairfield Beach Area (including homes closer to town), there were 95 sales year to date that sold for an average of 97 percent of asking compared to 78 sales YTD in 2019 selling on average for 96 percent of asking.

So the word on the street is that we may be in the dog days of summer at the beachfront, but the market overall is still hot!

 If you have any questions about this market and what it can mean for you, please reach out to me at 203.912.4440, Linda.Raymond@raveis.com , or using the form below.  I’m here to help!

 


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Fairfield Beach in Review: June 2020

Market Activity on
Fairfield Beach Road –  Pine Creek Avenue – Old Dam Road

What’s On the Market?

Fairfield Beach Road

  • 13 single-family homes are for sale.
  • Four are new construction listings priced from $1,500,000 to $3,200,000. Two are complete and sit across the street from the water. Two are under construction, one on the creek, and one on the beach with a creekside parcel and a dock.
  • Eight of the listings are on direct beachfront and priced from $1,350,000 to $3,775,000.  Five of these have additional creekside property, and two also have a dock on the creek.
  • Two listings are on the creek priced at $2,195,000 for a home with a dock, and $2,269,000 for a new home under construction.

Pine Creek Ave

  • There is one property for sale, a penthouse condo at Kensie Point, 10 Pine Creek Avenue, 501S for $1,135,000.

Old Dam Road

  • There is one property for sale on a 0.72-acre creekside parcel with a dock listed for $1,980,000.

What Sold So Far in 2020?

  • Four single-family homes sold in April and May including one on Fairfield Beach Road, one on Pine Creek Avenue, and two on Old Dam Road.
  • Sale prices ranged from $580,000 for a home off the water at 57 Pine Creek Avenue to $1,375,000 for a home at 2087 Fairfield Beach Road.

What About Accepted Offers?

  • There are currently two homes under contract, (my listing), a creekside home with a dock at 1690 Fairfield Beach Road listed for $1,095,000 and a newly raised home that is currently under construction on the beach at 1092 Fairfield Beach Road listed for $3,000,000. 
  • Two non-waterfront properties have accepted offers. One condo on Fairfield Beach Road and one house on Old Dam Road, listed for $729,000 and $700,000 respectively.

Sales activity on the waterfront this year has some catching up to do to match 2019 activity. Last year there were seven sales in February through May with sale prices ranging from $980,000 on Old Dam Road to $2,455,000 for (my listing), a large home on the beach with a creekside garage and finished space above it.  The late start of this year’s beach market is not surprising given the onset of the pandemic. However, the real estate market overall has seen an influx of activity from low interest rates and swarms of people leaving New York City, so the word on the street is that ‘summer is the new spring‘, and many anticipate a busy beach market ahead!

 If you would like to discuss the value of your property in this market and how I would market it for you, please contact me at 203.912.4440, Linda.Raymond@raveis.com , or using the form below.

 


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Summer 2020: 5 Things You Should Know About the Real Estate Market Right Now!

It’s a very dynamic time right now in real estate and a great time for anyone interested to jump into the action.  Here are five things you should know.

  1. Inventory Is Low! – There are fewer homes for sale resulting in a limited choice for buyers right now which creates competition for the homes on the market and can push up the selling price. May Inventory is Down!Look at the difference in the number of homes for sale in Fairfield and Westport in May compared to May of 2019! The marketplace is in need of more homes for sale. This creates a huge opportunity for sellers!
  2. Interest Rates are at an All Time Low!Mortgage Rates At an All Time Low!Although there has been daily fluctuation in interest rates, they have remained extremely attractive.  In fact, this week the rate for a conforming loan up to $510,400 has dipped to 2.85% for purchasers with high credit scores and a twenty percent downpayment. So there’s an excellent opportunity for buyers to finance a purchase at an amazingly low rate. This is great news for sellers as well because these low rates make their homes more affordable! Click the image from your phone and download the mortgage app!
  3. Summer is the New Spring! Summer is the New Spring!The real estate marketplace is very busy right now for a few key reasons. Realtors and everyone else in the industry have adapted to working in safe mode, there is pent up demand from the initial pandemic slowdown, and it’s a great time to buy and sell! If you are thinking of buying a home and want to take advantage of the low interest rates and increased home affordability, reach out to me so I can help you get that perfect new home.  Sellers, take note of the sample prep list above and the new Raveis Refresh program that’s here to help you with it. Reach out to me, and I will help you to make the process seamless!
  4. Raveis Refresh Is Here for You!
    Linda Raymond Explains Raveis Refresh

    Quick Video explaining Raveis Refresh

    If you have thought about selling but feel overwhelmed by what needs to happen to get your house ready, fear not! Raveis Refresh is a new service that is here to provide you with nearly anything you need, from help packing, to staging, painting, kitchen or bathroom renovations, and repairs, small to large.  The cost is completely deferred until closing, so no worries about that either.

  5. Real Estate is Expected to Drive Economic Recovery! Did you know that a recent study by the National association of Realtors indicates that the sale of just one home in the US results in an economic boost of $88,416?  Because of this, many experts are predicting real estate to lead to the country’s economic recovery.

Economic Impact of One Home Sale - NAR

So there are exciting opportunities for everyone right now, and you can even boost the economy when you make a move to help yourself.  Reach out to me anytime so I can help you with your next steps.

 

 

 


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Beach in Review: Fairfield 2019 into 2020!

Market activity on
Fairfield Beach Road –  Pine Creek Avenue – Old Dam Road

What’s On the Market?


On the Market: 1690 Fairfield Beach Road

Fairfield Beach Road

  • 10 single-family homes are for sale.
  • Three are new construction listings priced from $1,900,000 to $3,200,000. One is nearing completion and sits across the street from the water. Two are proposed new construction on direct beachfront.
  • There are two listings on the creek with a floating dock, 1690 and 1522 Fairfield Beach Road, priced at $1,150,000, and $2,350,000 respectively.
  • Seven of the 10 listings are on direct beachfront and priced from $1,699,000 and $3,775,000.

Pine Creek Ave

  • There is one property for sale at 57 Pine Creek Avenue for $599,000.

Old Dam Road

  • There are three properties for sale on the creek with a dock with prices ranging from $649,000 to $1,099,000.

Source: SmartMLS Updated 2/12/2020

What Sold in 2019?

  • 20 single-family homes sold including 15 on Fairfield Beach Road, four on Pine Creek Avenue, and one on Old Dam Road.
  • The highest sale price was $2,900,000 on Pine Creek and the lowest was $549,000 for an antique cottage on Fairfield Beach Road.
  • Two condominiums sold, one in the Burr Court complex on Fairfield Beach Road, and one at Kensie Point on Pine Creek Avenue.
  • There is currently one home under contract on Fairfield Beach Road listed for $3,000,000. 

The 2019 waterfront market enjoyed a higher median sale price of $1,527,500 compared to $1,460,000 in 2018. Twenty single-family homes sold in both 2019 and 2018, and there was one condominium sale in 2018 and two in 2019.  As we begin 2020 with low interest rates, a nice selection of active beach listings, and one home already under contract, I’m optimistic for a great year ahead.  If you would like to discuss the value of your property in this market and how I would market it for you, please contact me at 203.912.4440, Linda.Raymond@raveis.com , or using the form below.

Linda Raymond at Penfield Beach
2020 should be great, and I can’t wait!

 


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How’s the Spring Housing Market Doing this Year, 2018?

The 2018 spring real estate market has been hot so far!  I have been busy helping people sell properties, search properties, and make their moves.  I’m ready to help you and your friends too.   Let’s connect on social!

Facebook.com/LindaRaymondRealEstate

LinkedIn

Instagram

I also invite you to click the graphic below to visit my website and learn more.

What have I been up to this spring?

Click Image to Visit My Website and Learn More

Now is the time to stay abreast of the housing market in your Connecticut towns of interest. You can do this by subscribing to the concise monthly housing newsletter pictured below as well as by setting up a property search or mortgage rate watch for yourself.  Click the image to view the selections, and opt-in!

Preview of Local Housing Newsletter

Click Image for Free Newsletter and Home Search Options

As always, feel free to reach out with any real estate questions or comments you may have. Call/text me any time at 203.912.4440 or submit your note below.  Happy Spring!

Martel


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Fairfield’s Super Seven for Supper!

Hands down, one of the most fabulous features of Fairfield is all the chic eateries downtown. So, I thought I would share seven of my favorite picks for dining and ambiance.
Cafe Madeline
A Friday night ritual for me and my husband, Mark is to pop over to Cafe Madeline on the Post Road, a tiny, personal place, where Madeline is not just the proprietor but also the regular hostess. (You can see her in a white blouse in the photo talking with guests.) The atmosphere is nothing short of charming and, shall we say, adorable.  Madeline’s taste is somewhat eclectic as evidenced by the pink floral sconces, mini white party lights surrounding the glass case with handmade beaded jewelry for sale, and the flat screen that displays musical performances or nature scenes to fit the mood. There are probably no more than 10 tables inside, when it’s warm and pleasant outside, maybe another six or so out on the front patio. The food is always absolutely delicious.  We cannot resist ordering the butternut squash soup, which is rich and flavorful and always comes as a very generous serving. I typically follow that with the “small plate”, Portobello Mushroom with arugula and goat cheese, served hot is unbelievably delish!  Mark always gets the Chicken Piccata, also a small plate. He’s not a fan of the spinach that normally comes on top, so he substitutes it for chopped broccoli, which the staff always remembers and does automatically. Intimate, romantic and wonderful!
TotoAnother favorite where regulars are made to feel like family is Toto.  The Mediterranean-style eatery offers gregarious people and food with a flare. The owner, manager, and team always greet you with a warm welcome and seem genuinely thrilled that you have arrived. The decor’ has a stylish and sophisticated, yet casual European elegance, and the covered patio is in service for most of the year.  An absolute MUST starter (if you like cheese), is the Spicy Feta, served in a mini deep dish as part of a larger appetizer dish. You simply spoon it out and enjoy with some rustic bread. It’s truly a burst of flavor!  The Crispy Calamari Salad is the best I’ve had anywhere. Mark cannot resist the Four Cheese Fettucini, the ultimate decadence!
 
The Chelsea is a funky and somewhat rustic place to have a drink and enjoy a meal.  Rough wood accent walls and ornate wrought iron design elements are contrasted with neon green metal chairs.  The cozy bar hosting stylish guests (all the women seem to wear great shoes- just saying) pulls it all together! Mark says that no one else in town can beat the Chelsea Burger.  I personally cannot live without their octopus appetizer, a dish they tend to vary from time to time.  It doesn’t look huge when it arrives, but there is so much protein in it, you are sure to be full when you finish.  The flavors in my favorite version are spectacular! Large tentacles come with potatoes, greens, onions, and a pickled vegetable that adds a perfect punch!  It’s a must-have in my book, with all the goodness and none of the guilt.  Their Cobb Salad is fantastic too.
Old Post Tavern
For your classic tavern feel, visit the Old Post Tavern right on the corner of the Post Road and Unquowa.  They have been known to have a fun band during happy hour, and the patio is lovely.  If you are a fan of French Onion Soup, go no further.  Something about their blend of cheeses as well as some magic ingredients in the broth makes theirs completely unbeatable!
BodegaIf it’s gourmet Mexican food in a festive atmosphere you’re after, Bodega is the place to go.  Since it’s another tiny place, you may have to sample their top notch margaritas or other specialty drinks while you wait for your table or seat at the bar.  One of Bodega’s delectables is the Ceviche, a deceivingly filling dish posing as an appetizer. The fish, in a specialty cocktail sauce, has a fantastic flavor and comes with some toasted plantains, that in my opinion, make a complete meal.  If you prefer something hot, their Chicken Soup is hearty and delicious.  You can have it mild or spicy depending on whether you opt to dump in the hot peppers served on the giant turquoise spoon.  Burrito Tinga is Mark’s tasty favorite, and my daughter loves the Gombos Tacos. Bodega's Festive Atmosphere
Martel is on the Post Road in Southport and is a cozy place with a bit of a steakhouse feel. The ceilings are high, yet ornate, and there is always an art gallery Marteladorning the walls. Always bustling, the place serves a warm, upbeat atmosphere.  Although there are many excellent dishes here, my husband and I have gravitated toward sharing the Fondue for Two followed by Martel’s House Salad. The salad features marinated tomatoes and an aged Danish Blue Cheese that are fabulous together. If the fondue is off-menu for the summer, an equally rich and yummy alternative is the side order of creamed spinach!  I have it as a meal, with wine, of course.
Last, but not least, we love the Grey Goose, also in Southport, where we once stood elbow to elbow with John Mayer before being seated. The atmosphere can be described as rustic and cozy with an eclectic crowd. Some folks go to hang out, others go for dinner. There’s always a flat screen at the bar featuring a sporting event as well as a crackling fireplace on the opposite wall. Penne ala Vodka, Grey Goose Style is Mark’s staple, while I go back and forth between the Grey GooseLobster Macaroni and the Steak Tips small plate.  The Lobster Macaroni is the absolute best here, with the secret ingredient of truffle oil to enhance the generous chunks of lobster and the crispy cheese topping. The Steak Tips are equally fantastic. Cooked to perfection, they come with a corn salsa and chipotle mayo dip that together, absolutely melt in your mouth!
All this talk is making me hungry!  Be sure to come and try out Fairfield’s fabulous eateries, and should you want to ensure you live right nearby, take a look at the featured home for sale below and send a note through the form with any questions!
Screen Shot 2018-07-25 at 4.55.37 PM
P.S. New kid on the block, The Sinclair Kitchen + Bar has recently opened downtown in the Brick Walk. I have been there twice with a positive experience both times.  The patio is great, surrounded by thick trees and protected by a multi-settings awning. The Mussels in a Pot Thai Style (5 additional styles to try!) were delicious, and Mark gave two thumbs up to the Steak Sandwich.  Anyone else, care to weigh in?
Want to live downtown?  Look no further!

254 Penfield Rd, Fairfield CT254 Penfield Road, Fairfield
Walk to Train, Town, & Beach!

OPEN HOUSE Sunday 8/19, 1-3 PM!

For questions and comments about anything real estate, please send a note below.

 

 

 

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Wasted time costs you money


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Are You Choosing the Right Real Estate Attorney?

Many people come to their Realtor with an attorney already on board.  They figure the attorney is of no concern to their agent thinking that if they know the attorney or have dealt with them before, that lawyer is the best option.  They may think a recommendation from a friend covers all the bases.  Besides price, most people haven’t considered the critical factors below about the attorney they hire to successfully close their real estate transaction.

Here’s a Top 10 List of questions you should know the answer to before bringing your attorney on board-

  1. Does he play well with others?   There are real estate attorneys that give their egos priority over their fiduciary responsibility to their clients.  These lawyers may decide they don’t like the lawyer on the other side of the transaction and deliberately try to kill your purchase or sale as an assault on that attorney. Play well with others?Your Realtor may have worked patiently and tirelessly to successfully negotiate optimal terms for you thus far only to then work triple-time behind the scenes to keep your purchase or sale together because the attorneys are butting heads. You may know nothing about this unless your sale falls through because of it. You want to work with a lawyer that relates professionally with all parties in the transaction at all times. Otherwise, they are being counter-productive and are doing you (and everyone else involved) a disservice.
  2. Does she know the TRID lending regulations?  There are lending regulations that require a three-day period before closing for the buyer to review all the final numbers compiled by the attorneys. This requires attorneys to be well organized and proactive in compiling the credits, debits, and allocations of taxes, insurance, oil deliveries, etc. earlier than in the past. There are also new forms they need to be familiar with.  If your lawyer is not up to speed with the new regulations, your closing can be significantly delayed at the last minute as a result.
  3. Is he overly chatty or verbose, adding to your bill?  I have worked with attorneys that have kept me on the phone for almost half an hour every time they called and then complained about all the extra time they are spending on the case, stating that they will have to bill for it. I’m sure this is not what you want.Wasted time costs you money
  4. Does he communicate effectively with you, your agent, the lender, and the other attorney? There are attorneys that act like it’s beyond their scope of work to communicate effectively with the other parties in the transaction.  Some barely respond to calls or emails at all! Communication is a critical component in your purchase and sale because the lender, the two Realtors, and the two attorneys have a huge amount of detail to coordinate in order to keep your sale on track. entrepreneur-1001611__180 If any of the players are “missing in action” it prevents the process from progressing efficiently, and critical information can fall through the cracks.
  5. Does she specialize in real estate?  If your attorney focuses more on criminal law, divorce, or other areas besides real estate, you can end up with an attorney that is in court or unavailable when you need them at a critical time. Specialized in real estate
  6. Is she familiar with the local regulations and practices? You want to be sure your attorney is knowledgeable about the local area of the home you are buying or selling. The process and attorney responsibilities can vary from county to county.  There may also be issues that arise about boundaries, zoning regulations, permits or other things specific to your town that your attorney will need to know about.
  7. Does she have a paralegal?  Many attorneys diversify their workload to include more lucrative endeavors than real estate closings.  This is fine for you as long as they have a paralegal and/or partner in her practice to keep everything on track when she is focused elsewhere.  Otherwise, you and everyone else involved in the transaction can be stuck ‘dead on the vine’ waiting for a critical response or document.Paralegal or partner?
  8. Is he efficient? Some attorneys are content with creating delays and taking their time to get things done. Efficient?Ask any lender or real estate agent what’s important about an attorney, and they will tell you efficiency (second to good communication)!  The entire transaction is on the clock from the moment an offer is accepted.  The attorney must send and receive the contract in the allotted timeframe and then get it to the lender. They must complete a title search and address questions and concerns in a timely fashion, and they need to prepare all the closing documents on time, or your closing could be postponed.
  9. Is she versed in your areas of specific concern? If you know your transaction will involve added elements of complexity, you want to be sure your attorney can still handle it with ease. For example, if you are moving out of state, coordinating a purchase and sale or pursuing a short sale, run this past your agent and potential attorney up-front to assess their experience and comfort level.
  10. Has your agent recommended him or her? Last, but not least, the most thorough insight you can get on your would-be attorney is from your Realtor.  Thumbs upMany of the questions above are not ones you can easily get answers to by interviewing the attorney directly or even from a friend who’s used him or her. If your agent hasn’t worked with the lawyer directly, he or she can ask other agents how well that attorney as served his client and worked as a team player for a successful transaction in the past. Your agent’s only interest in the attorney you hire is to get a solid team member on board to help ensure a smooth move for you!

Is there an attorney you are considering that you would like feedback about?  Have you had a good or bad experience you would like to share?  Is there something you would add to the list above? Your questions and comments are welcome below.

 

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Home Buying: Lessons Learned from Power Couple’s First Time!

Home Buyers Race to Buy House

Wait! Remember Your Pre-Approval!

Ronald and Sara were a happy young couple ready to jump into home buying and get their first home together. When they called me, they knew what they wanted, a four-bedroom home with nice property and a pool in the million dollar range. There was a house, in particular, they had seen online that they were very excited to see right away. They thought this could be it, and they would be buying their first home.

I was excited for them too! I asked if they had spoken to a mortgage professional yet. They had not, so I gave them a few reputable contacts to reach out to and told them they should have a mortgage pre-approval before they started looking. They asked why, and I told them that the pre-approval serves three critical purposes, one, it confirms that they are eligible for a loan, two, it lets them know what their spending limit is and what the associated monthly payments will be, and three, it positions them as strong and qualified buyers when presenting an offer for the home they want to buy.

So they forged ahead, chose a lender, and sought their pre-approval. But they were soon shocked and disappointed to learn that they would not be eligible for a mortgage for at least another year.

Ronald and Sara were a power couple with great jobs and ample income. Sara had a Ph.D. and was the director of a graduate school. Ronald was an emergency room physician.

But, what they didn’t realize was that all the student loans they were paying off gave them a ratio of debt to income that was too high to get a mortgage. So we found a nice home for them to rent for a year. In the meantime, they worked hard with the credit expert company, North Shore Advisory to ensure they were on the fast track for managing their debt and raising their credit scores within the one-year timeline they had set as a goal.

Couple gets engaged

“I do!”

Fairfield University Home

This is the one!

Honeymoon in Africa

Honeymoon in Africa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fast forward a year later, and they sailed through the pre-approval process to obtain a Certified Pre-Approval from William Raveis Mortgage, got engaged, and found and closed on a gorgeous new home in the university area of Fairfield, Connecticut!

Ronald and Sara also managed to jet-set off to Africa for a pre-honeymoon celebration on safari before returning to their new home to plan their wedding!  Clearly they were perfectly situated to live happily ever after, but what were the lessons learned along the way?

Always get a pre-approval before you start shopping for a home so that you know where you stand, avoid unexpected setbacks, and can position yourself as a competitive buyer.   Besides, an offer to purchase a property is not complete or acceptable without a pre-approval letter from your lender or proof of cash.

Be sure your pre-approval is of the utmost quality, as they are not all created equal. Recent changes to national lending regulations add extra time sensitivity and make this more important than ever. There are a number of new technology enhancements available that can make the whole mortgage process faster, easier, and more transparent for consumers.

Mortgage Technology Enhancements

New Tech Enhancements Simplify Mortgage Process

William Raveis Mortgage is the only mortgage banker to provide a Certified Pre-Approval.  This means that when they present a Certified Pre-Approval to a buyer, they have completed a full review of credit, income, and assets, reviewed supporting documentation and double-checked it all via an automated underwriting system to ensure that when the big day comes, the buyers get their loan and the sale goes through.

Playing with Credit Cards

Play with Your Credit Cards AFTER You Close!

Last, but not least, it’s important to be aware of all the factors that can impact your credit score because, the lower your score, the more you will pay for your mortgage, (as well as insurance and other things). In fact, it’s a good idea to check your credit well in advance of applying for a loan so that you have time to work on it if need be.  Visit North Shore Advisory, Inc. for an expert resource about credit tips and strategy.  Once you have your good credit and Certified Pre-Approval in place, make sure you don’t do anything that can change your credit score before you close!  Even a tiny negative change to your credit can bump up your interest rate and suddenly put your dream home out of reach.  So check with your lender or Realtor about things you should or should not do during your home purchase process.

Then you are ready to make your dream home come true! Welcome Home!

For questions about the process of buying or selling a home, or if you’re thinking about a move this season, send me a note below!


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What are the Hot Technology Trends in Real Estate?

Six Hot Trends that are Super Cool for Consumers!

Real Estate Technology Trends

Consumer-Friendly Tech Trends in Real Estate

  1. Virtual Experiences – The trend is to showcase properties while delivering consumers

Raveis 3Dan engaging experience that also saves them time. In addition to creative videos, this includes 3D touring, virtual reality, drone photography, virtual staging and even hologram projection of furniture into rooms.  3D tours enable viewers to virtually walk through a property while using their computer mouse to “go” anywhere in the home.  The tool also creates a virtual doll house that lets buyers float through the floors and get an overall feel for the layout, orientation, and flow. Inman News recently talked about virtual reality tours that use special goggles to create an experience close to being there in person as well as gear that projects holograms of furniture into a space to visualize it “for real”.  Last, but not least, busy or far-away consumers can benefit from a live virtual tour via Skype.

  1. Social Media Exuberance – Okay you might have guessed this one, but it shouldn’t be underestimated. Social media can provide a much richer perspective and bring added value beyond what a typical website can offer when evaluating a potential Realtor.  Does the agent share useful information and resources? Do they have a strong presence on multiple platforms including a blog? Do they leverage this presence to promote client listings for maximum internet exposure? Are they creative, resourceful, knowledgeable, personable?  Do they share insights from past customers?  What do they do in their spare time? Many consumers are looking into these types of questions with a simple online search or searches within social media platforms.
  1. Mobile Optimization – Everyone’s on the go! The trend is for people to consume web content on their mobile devices.  Statista.com predicts a 57% increase in global mobile web traffic per year through 2019.  The most recent click reports I received from my e-newsletter show that readers opening the email on a mobile device versus a computer range between 50-70%. Mobile Optimization So more and more real estate websites and blogs are becoming mobile friendly and optimizing for the best mobile experience. Mobile apps are also on the rise.  William Raveis provides a comprehensive Real Estate App. The company has also released a Mortgage App that enables home buyers to start their pre-approval process right from their phone! And hot off the press is the Raveis Open House App that lets guests type in their name, phone, and email and then request a complimentary home value report, mortgage pre-approval and Local Housing e-Newsletter for the town of their choice!
  1. Mortgage Magic – Instead of misery. The complex process is now streamlined with new technology that gives consumers the efficiency and transparency they need and deserve. William Raveis Mortgage addresses the first critical step by providing buyers with a certified loan pre-approval followed by electronic milestone tracking of their loan process that also keeps all the players on track. Borrowers view a bold graphic showing a clear progression of the steps and status across their screen.  The icing on the cake? Sign documents electronically from wherever you are!Real Estate Value Forecasting
  1. Accurate Value Estimates – We’ve all heard of the Zestimate, and most of us are well aware of the frustrations with inconsistent results, incorrect data and inability to correct errors.  “What is my home worth?” is the question people are always asking. Savvy consumers want a quality tool to help them estimate the market value of their property.  William Raveis recently launched the RAVestimate. The interactive technology lets consumers  input specific home improvements and then work with comparable sales data that they select.  The company tested the tool and documented extraordinary accuracy.
  1. Predictive Marketing – Advanced intelligence and predictive modeling to help buyers before they ask are up and coming. Consumer data and predictive analytics will be used to anticipate home buying goals, preferences, and timing.  So in the not-too-distant future, Realtors, lenders, and perhaps the perfect home may be finding the buyer before they even know they are going to buy!
    Real Estate Technology, Predictive Analytics

 

Which trends to you think have the most promise?  What other trends are you seeing that are consumer driven?  From a consumer perspective, what new technology services would you like to see?

CT Post - Real Estate Tech Trends Dec 2015

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