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Rivertowns Real Estate Turning Into A Sellers Market

Courtesy: National Association of Realtors

Courtesy: National Association of Realtors

A recent article in the Wall Street Journal appears to confirm some of the more hyper-local activity that we have been noticing here in Westchester and the Rivertowns. Sellers are gaining the upper hand once again in the sale of their homes. Due to a low inventory, which can be traced to a number of reasons, homeowners are often picking and choosing between multiple offers on their homes. It goes without saying that if you have multiple offers on your home, within two weeks of listing, some of those offers are likely at or above the full asking price. I have had experiences in the past two weeks, of my clients bidding against other buyers, where the  full asking price was just not enough. In these cases, buyers who have the full purchase price or more available in cash, are able to forgo the mortgage process and are often the winners. These are not foreclosed, short or otherwise distressed sales. Simply homes which show very well to prospective buyers and are perceived to be a good value in a given price range, currently well over $1,000,000 in that market. This trend is not unique to any particular price point though. In the village of Dobbs Ferry, in the Rivertowns, I have another listing at a significantly lower price point of the market, currently in contract for just slightly less than full asking. Back up offers have come in, even after it is made clear to prospective purchasers that binding contracts of sale have already been signed with other buyers. These back up offers are at full asking, hoping for a failure of the current buyers, so they may gladly take their place in the process. There are other accounts of this at all levels of Rivertowns real estate.
Whether this is a  temporary blip in the market, until inventory or interest rates rise or a more prolonged phenomena remains to be seen. The short story for sellers though, may be to not wait until the traditional spring market starts in April and instead to list now while this situation still exists. Read the full Wall Street Journal article at: http://blogs.wsj.com/developments/2013/02/21/housing-its-becoming-a-sellers-market/?mod=WSJBlog&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+wsj%2Fdevelopments%2Ffeed+%28WSJ.com%3A+Developments+Blog%29

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Academy Awards For Movie Homes

From one of my favorite sites, houzz.com, very apropos to this evenings festivities. I share the opinion that the interior of the Hampton’s house in “Something’s Gotta Give” is at least one of the most remembered, idyllic homes. See the top 10.

Irvington Penguin Plunge Returns For 2013

In what appears to be a now annual event, the Irvington Penguin Plunge is back for the second year in a row. It is set to start off at 11:30 AM on Saturday March 2, 2013 in Matthiessen Park. One might think that after last years plunge into the frigid Hudson River people may have had second thoughts, but no such luck. It appears to be just as popular an event. This year may be slightly different though in that, unlike 2012 which was a comparatively warm winter, we have actually had some ice on the Hudson River already. One would surmise therefore that the water will be even colder, however marginally, than the Irvington Penguin Plunge of 2012. Time will tell, but hopefully swimmers will not have to climb over shore ice to get into the water.
Remember, this is a fundraising event so the more sponsors you get for your “Plunge”, the more money will be generated for the Village of Irvington programs. Last years Irvington Penguin Plunge raised $76,000.
For a look at last years event, click on the link and associated video below. If that still doesn’t scare you off, a link to the entrance application is also enclosed. See you on March 2 at 11:30 AM.
https://dobbsferry-rivertowns.com/2012/02/08/1st-irvington-ny-penguin-plunge-set-for-march-3-2012/

How To Register For The 2013 Irvington Penguin Plunge:

https://sites.google.com/site/irvingtonplunge/home/how-to-register-for-the-2012-irvington-penguin-plunge

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0BwTTV1goJYoINnlsWGx1YWhKWkk/edit?pli=1

Some Homes Are Selling In Less Than Two Weeks

4th Quarter Home Prices Up

Westchester Home Sale Prices Up 14% Over Last Year

In what can only be described as a remarkable turnaround in the US housing market, homes in some parts of the country are going from active status to accepted offer status in an incredible two weeks or less. This, coming on the heels of a housing market which had typical selling periods of 6 months or more. The primary driving force behind this phenomena is an extremely low inventory of homes for sale. Many sellers appear to be waiting out the bottom of the market, preferring to sell their homes when values go up. Concurrently, banks remain very tight on financing, requiring a borrower to have a virtually blemish free credit history and FICO scores of 740 and above. This has resulted in super high quality buyers converging on the few remaining houses for sale. Not only is this resulting in fast marketing periods, it is also starting to drive prices up, for reasons of supply vs. demand.
Even here in the Rivertowns, I am experiencing multiple bid situations with buyers winning out, based not only on the highest offer, but also on the best terms available, sometimes with down payment amounts of 50% or even all-cash purchases. If you bought your home 5 years ago you will still perhaps be losing money, based on your original purchase price, but any available homes for sale are also equally devalued. If you were thinking of selling this could be a great time to cash in on this unique set of circumstances, particularly if you were planning on downsizing to a smaller home or moving out of the area. Interest rates remain at historic lows and assuming a good credit history, your chances of getting a great value in another purchase would seem ideal.
More information on this trend as it relates to the Westchester housing market can be found in the BHG Rand 4th Quarter Market Report. Additionally, an interesting story on this trend in the US housing market can be found at Bloomberg News: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-02-05/homes-sell-in-two-weeks-with-low-supply-for-spring-buyers.html

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