Jason Waugh, President and COO of Prudential Northwest Properties, shares his thoughts on 2011 and the exciting year ahead…
Here’s a summary of the market trends in Portland’s 97229 zip code, which includes the communities of Cedar Mill, Northwest Heights, Rock Creek and Bethany. Average price has increased 2.48% from November 2010 to November 2011. If you would like to see current real estate activity and market trends in your area, please click here and register for Market Tracker. Simply enter your name, email address and zip code — your information will remain private and only be used for the purpose of sending you this automated report.
The latest RMLS Market Action report for the greater Portland Metro area shows a slight increase in sales price when comparing November 2011 to the prior month. Average price rose to $259,400 and median price increased 3.3% to $225,000. Closed sales were up 18.9% when comparing November 2011 to November 2010. Looking at January – November 2011 and the same period last year, closed sales are up 3.4% and pending sales are up by 5.3%. Inventory currently stands at 6.2 months, the lowest in the last three years and four months lower than at this time last year. With mortgage rates at historic lows, this is a great time to buy a home.
The latest RMLS Market Action report shows sales are up 17.2% in Clark County when comparing November 2011 to November 2010, and prices are down 7.2%. From October to November of this year, average and median sales prices increased by 8.2% and 5%, respectively. (The median price is the price that falls in the middle of the total number of homes sold.) Inventory level stands at 8, meaning it would take 8 months to sell all the current listings at the current sales pace if no new listings became available. Six months of inventory is considered a balanced market.
With increased activity in the kitchen and heightened energy use to combat the cold, families are at greater risk of home fires during the winter holiday season. The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) is encouraging families and communities across the country to take simple precautions to ensure that this celebratory time of year does not result in a fire-related tragedy.
Many of these simple precautions seem like common sense, but are often overlooked due to the hectic nature of the holiday season. In addition to taking preventative measures like testing smoke alarms, it is critical that families create and practice their fire escape plan to minimize tragedy if a fire does occur.
Follow these basic safety guidelines to help protect your family, guests and home from holiday home fires:
– Stay in the kitchen when food is cooking. Unattended cooking is the leading cause of home fires in the United States.
– Keep children at least three feet away from cooking appliances. Never leave a child unsupervised while cooking or when an electric or gas stove is within reach.
– Keep towels, pot holders, curtains and other flammable items away from hot surfaces.
– With greater activity in and around your home comes increased energy use. Be careful not to overburden your electrical system.
– Keep space heaters out of high-traffic and exit areas, and at least three feet away from any combustible materials.
– Do not use space heaters in rooms where children are unsupervised.
– Turn space heaters off when you go to sleep or leave the room. Never leave a space heater unattended.
– Install smoke alarms inside each bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of your home. Test smoke alarms once a month to ensure they are working properly.
– Make sure everyone in your family recognizes the sound of the smoke alarm and knows what it means.
– Plan for a fire emergency before it happens. Be sure to explain your family fire escape plan to overnight houseguests and babysitters.
For more information, please visit www.holidaysafety.org.
Several members of the Prudential Northwest Properties McMinnville team are quite active in their local Realtor Association, the Yamhill County Association of Realtors. At the recent YCAR Annual Meeting & Holiday Party, Beth Caster (far left) is being sworn in as YCAR State Director, Janel Huntley (third from right) as Secretary, Stacey McGhehey (second from right) as President-Elect, and Ron Schock (far right) as Immediate Past President.
Our thanks to all of you for your service to your community, your clients, and the real estate industry as a whole. You make us proud!
Jason Waugh, President and COO of Prudential Northwest Properties, shares a few words about Prudential Real Estate joining Brookfield … please click the image below to view the video.
For many, the holiday season is truly the most wonderful time of the year, but if you’re trying to get your home sold, the hustle and bustle of the season may prove to be a bit stressful. But for many, the timing is perfect.
Real estate professionals often debate about whether it’s a good idea to have your house on the market during the period between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve. Some believe that those six weeks are busy enough for people without worrying about the notion of buying a home, while others argue that there will be less competition and a better chance for sellers to get their homes sold.
Proponents of leaving a house on the market argue that prospective buyers who do look at your house over the holiday season may be more serious, and if you wait until the NewYear to list your property, you will face more competition.
Plus, since January is often a month when employers and employees tend to move, many are looking for a new place to call home during late November and December, so it’s a great time to capture that market.
There are also buyers trying to claim the tax benefits that come from buying in a given year, and those who need to make a quick decision might be more apt to settling quickly.
One downside for the seller is that the hectic time of year makes it harder to get a home ready at the drop of a hat if an agent calls to schedule a last-minute showing. People are busy making food, wrapping presents and preparing for a house full of guests, so it could be a big inconvenience. However, your house may be decorated with beautiful lights and decorations, creating a festive feeling that will attract buyers, and it may pay off in the long run.
Some real estate professionals believe that keeping your house on the market throughout the holiday season will have you appealing to a much smaller inventory of buyers who have very specific needs that your home might not meet. Many others counter that less inventory throughout the holiday season means less competition. Since more people vacation during the holiday season, they actually have more time to look for a home that includes everything they want and need.
For homes that have been on the market for a while, removing them for the duration of the holiday season will allow the house to go back as a new listing in January, thereby drawing more traffic because it’s fresh. However, you need to take into account the fact that you risk losing the buyer who may have been looking in December.
Finally, many agents believe that buyers tend to be more emotional during the holidays and are in the habit of spending more money, so getting the price you want may be easier.
To help you determine if selling your home during the holidays is right for you, please contact a Prudential Northwest Properties real estate professional today.
Late yesterday afternoon it was announced that Prudential Real Estate & Relocation was acquired by Brookfield Residential Property Services, a global real estate and relocation company.
Brookfield is a premier organization with real estate in its DNA and over $150 billion in assets. Businesses include residential brokerage, global employee relocation and data analytics. This transaction creates a global real estate and relocation services company operating in the US, Canada, Mexico, Portugal, China, Brazil, India, France, Australia & Singapore, and our relocation company DOUBLES in size as a result of the sale.
While this certainly will bring exciting changes and opportunities, we will continue to operate as Prudential Northwest Properties, provide the same exceptional level of service to our clients, and use the great tools and systems that continue to benefit our brokers and clients.
Earl Lee, the president of Prudential Real Estate & Relocation Services, is taking an expanded role in the combined companies, and his enthusiasm and excitement are contagious. In his own words from twitter yesterday, “1+1=3 Brookfield Residential Property Services & Prudential Real Estate and Relocation Svcs: 2 fine companies now form an even better one.”
This historic announcement positions two industry leading companies across the globe, and creates the 3rd largest residential real estate brokerage in North America, and the world’s second largest relocation services provider.
We’re very excited about what the future brings!
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact Prudential Northwest Properties president Jason Waugh @ firstname.lastname@example.org or 503-350-7248.
As December begins and the holiday season and spirit of giving move into full swing, why not make a few tax moves now that could give you added savings when you file your 2011 tax return? The year-end is an ideal time to lower your 2011 tax liability and increase the size of your refund when tax time arrives early in 2012.
There is still time for a final push to claim several tax benefits before 2011 winds to a close. Many taxpayers will be doing things like giving to charities and pre-paying January tuition, but the key is knowing how these and other common expenses may count as tax deductions if you qualify. There are five key considerations taxpayers should be thinking of before December 31 to reduce taxable income and increase deductions or credits to claim:
1. Save more for retirement – By increasing retirement plan contributions, you can reduce your income for tax purposes. Taxpayers can contribute up to $16,500 to a 401(k), 403(b) or Federal Government Thrift Savings Plan; those over age 50 can contribute an additional $5,500.
2. Prepay January payments in December – Taking care of your January mortgage payment, 4th quarter state tax estimate, or winter semester tuition now lets you claim these payments on your 2011 tax return.
3. Get to the doctor! – If you are holding off on a major medical procedure until after the holidays, stop procrastinating and make an appointment now to increase your 2011 medical expense deductions.
4. Give to charity – Giving cash and non-cash donations to charity can give back on your taxes. And volunteering time counts too, which means the more than 80,000 volunteers who lent a helping hand to the Joplin, Mo. tornado victims may be able to deduct their out-of-pocket expenses on a tax return.
5. Save energy, save $500 on your taxes – If you are planning to buy an energy-saving, hot water heater or install energy efficient windows or insulation to your home, do it now. Up to $500 in credit may be available for making energy-related home improvements.
Please speak with your tax professional for clarification on any of these suggestions.