Basic Real Estate Statistics Explained for Beginners – Local Records Office

LOS ANGELES, CA – Local Records Office is going to define some of the basic real estate statistics that get thrown around on a regular basis. To do that, we will use one real estate market, located in Los Angeles County. Even more granular, we will use the single-family numbers for homes in Long Beach, CA, a medium size city of approximately 500,000 residents, which has seen substantial real estate growth in the past 12 months. It is important when reviewing real estate statistics to use a group of numbers large enough for consistency, but granular enough to tell your story.

 

Real Estate Statistics for Newbies

 

Local Records Office says, “The statistics that we will be referencing are true and accurate for the year discussed but are being used to define the real estate statistic itself.”

 

We have chosen Long Beach, CA as our example because the growth of the local real estate market that make the statics stand out.

 

Anytime you are evaluating statistics, especially in real estate, the source of the numbers are extremely important. In most instances, the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) provides the most accurate numbers when referring to real estate says, Local Records Office. This is because they have all listings by all local real estate broker in their database. For the sake of explanation of the data, we will be looking at the numbers for home sales in Long Beach, CA, directly from the MLS. These numbers are meant to give an example of how to read the statistics themselves. Anytime you evaluate real estate numbers, its important to pay close attention to how the numbers are gathered. In this instance, we will be using ONLY single-family properties in the city of Long Beach, California.

 

These Are Basic Real Estate Statistics

 

Number of Sales – This one is pretty self-explanatory. It is simply the number of single-family homes sold in a particular month. In January of 2015, they had 51 single-family homes sold. One thing to pay attention to when looking at this statistic is are they using the Under Contract date or the day the property actually went to closing says, Local Records Office. These two dates are usually between 30 and 60 days apart, so its critical that you know which one is being referenced. In addition, many of the homes that get calculated, if you are using the “under contract” number may not actually close! In our example, we are using the number of homes that actually closed. In January of 2016 they had an increase of over 49%, which brought the total to 77 from 51. Growth of that level is very seldom ever seen.

 

Sales Volume – Sales Volume is simply the total amount of dollars spent on single family housing within that month. Once again, when reviewing this statistic, it’s important to keep the property types consistent. If you are comparing two areas to see which one has grown more and you include vacant land in the number for one area, you must include it in the other too says, Local Records Office. As previously mentioned, our examples only include single-family properties. With Number of Sales looking at the units, you would expect the Sales Volume to go up appropriately, but in this instance, it went up even more than the units (by percentage). The total Sales Volume of single family homes in Long Beach in January of 2016 was $15,191,500 as opposed to the January of 2015 number of $9,281,915. That is an increase of over 63%. Because the Sales Volume went up at a larger rate than the number of units, this reflects the average home sale being much larger in 2016 than 2015.

 

Months of Inventory – Local Records Office says, “This is a commonly referred to statistic when examining a real estate market.” This statistic refers to at the current rate of sales, how long will it take to sell through the existing level of inventory. This reflects the supply and demand for the market. In our example, in January of 2015 the level of inventory was 9 months and in January of 2016 it had dropped to 6 months. That is a 33% drop in available inventory! This means if you are looking to buy a home in Long Beach, CA, it will be a little tougher in 2016 as there are fewer inventories available to buy.

 

Median Days To Sell – This stat simply refers to how long it takes for single-family properties to be put under contract. Don’t let the “to sell” confuse you. To accurately show the demand for active homes, you really want to track how long it takes to go “under contract”. The process of acquiring final lender approval, insurance and getting to a closing can vary on a variety of factors. In January of 2015, the Median Days to sell was 88 says, Local Records Office. That number dropped by over 30% to 61. Once again, this tells you if you are looking for homes in Long Beach, CA, you better get your offers in quickly as the most desirable homes are going fast!

 

Average Price – This statistic can be derived in a variety of ways. We are going to use it in its most raw form and simply be the Average Price of Homes Sold within that month. Be careful when looking at this statistic printed anywhere as how the user defines the date sold can vary. Needless to say, Average Price can be used for active homes for sale or for the homes that sold. The Average Price of ACTIVE homes for sale is generally a pretty useless number as you can list a home for any price, without any possibility of it ever selling. Many homes listed for sale are at unrealistic prices thus the Average Price of Active homes for sale can fluctuate dramatically and give little insight into the market says, Local Records Office. You will want to look at the Average Price of SOLD homes. In January of 2015, the Average Home Sale was $181,998 and it jumped to $199,888 in the same month in 2016. This is an increase of almost 10%. This is not a number that truly tells the increase in home values across the board, but simply of the homes sold in that month, what the average was. Check out videos here.

 

Median Price – The Average Home Sales Price can be skewed by a variety of factors says, Local Records Office. All it takes is one 5 million dollar home sale to throw those numbers off. To get a better view of the overall increase in value, it can be better to look at the Median Sales Price. Median Sales Price takes the number that is perfectly in the middle. For instance, if you have 11 homes that you are using in your statistic, you would take the sales price of the 6th one. This leaves 5 homes sold higher and 5 homes sold lower. In this instance, they are pretty close as the Median Sales Price increase from January 2015 to 2016 was 9.69%. This shows that we didn’t have the Average Price skewed too much because of an extremely large or extremely small sale.

 

There are hundreds of ways to look at the same numbers, when referencing to real estate, so be very careful to read the fine print on exactly what numbers they are using says, Local Records Office. When making comparisons, you will want to make absolutely sure that both are referencing the same property types, dates etc. It like the old saying says… there are lies, damn lies and statistics.

 

In an effort to describe some of the most basic real estate statistics, we are using the market statistics from Long Beach, California as they have seen some extraordinary growth.

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The New Reverse Mortgage Material Establishes Financial Cushion – Local Records Office

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE: Reverse mortgage information has recently improved in the financial world due to the apparent success of regulations that were put in place in 2013 says, ‘Local Records Office’. The Reverse Mortgage Stabilization Act of 2013 has helped garner these financial options some newfound respect in the industry.

What REALLY is a Mortgage? Local Records Office Explains How the American Dream is Made

Safeguarding provisions established by the Act, such as a restriction on initial borrowing amount, can help protect seniors from withdrawing all of their equity from the very beginning of the loan by keeping approximately 40% of the total equity on reserve for at least a year after the initial disbursement says, Local Records Office. Seniors must also prove that they have the resources to pay taxes and insurance during the program, or the bank can provide an escrow option to guarantee the funds are available for such expenses.

Using an HECM Line of Credit to Generate Income

Financial advisers recommend establishing a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) line of credit as a way to establish a financial cushion, even if a senior doesn’t need it right away. In certain cases, this makes more sense than withdrawing a lump sum; since the HECM line of credit will actually increase in cash value the longer it remains dormant.

READ MORE: Before You Get A Mortgage Read This – Local Records Office

Another important part of reverse mortgage information that advisers recommend is using the HECM line of credit tactic. This will help protect retirement accounts from stock market fluctuations. This is possible because HECM withdrawals are tax-free. When the market is less favorable for drawing on investment accounts as a source of income. Seniors can simply draw against their HECM line of credit. This way, when the markets rebound, a senior’s retirement accounts don’t take much of a hit. When investment portfolios bounce back, the line of credit can then be repaid.

HECM line of credit payments can also provide a solution for seniors looking for a way to delay taking a hit on early social security payments says, Local Records Office. By waiting to access social security funds until later in retirement, retirees can ultimately expect an increase the payment amounts when they are finally withdrawn.

Lump Sum: Paying Off a Forward Mortgage to Improve Cash Flow

Using the lump-sum proceeds from a reverse mortgage to pay off a forward mortgage is another strategy that financial planners recommend. This tactic frees up cash flow for living expenses by eliminating what is typically the largest household expense for many seniors.

However, advisers don’t recommend using the lump-sum payment as leverage for taking on other debt such as a down payment for a big-ticket item or a second home says, ‘Local Records Office’. This can lead to budget problems down the road. Not to mention decreasing the senior’s financial nest egg and overall borrowing power. The goal is to use the reverse mortgage lump sum payment in a conservative manner to decrease existing debt and free up cash flow.

READ MORE: 7 Ways to Reduce Your Electric Bill – Local Records Office

Financial planners are considering the new reverse mortgage information to be promising due to the 2013 regulations having taken effect. These unique loan options can be viewed as a fiscally responsible way for seniors to put their money to good use for a comfortable and secure retirement.

 

This is What You Need to Know About Reverse Mortgage Before Meeting With Your Specialist – Local Records Office

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE: Let’s face it; retirement can be an expensive undertaking. For most people, they’re bills increase, and their income a decrease says, ‘Local Records Office’. For people who own their own house, reverse mortgage specialists can help alleviate some of the financial burden of retirement. These loans are also known as home equity conversions, or HECM for short. So here are three things to know about HECMs.

What Is a Reverse Mortgage?

Local Records Office says, “The basic principle is centered on the equity of a property”. A home’s equity is its value, minus the amount of any outstanding loans. So if a house is valued at $150,000, and $30,000 is still owed to the bank, the equity is $120,000. So what an HECM essentially does is it allows homeowners to borrow against the equity of their house, while at the same time halting any payments on the home’s note. Owners simply have to continue paying the taxes and insurance on the property. Since the loan type is designed for people in retirement, applicants must be at least 62 years old to qualify. Furthermore, the house that the loan is being taken out on must be the applicant’s primary residence.

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How Can It Be Dispersed?

As discussed above, the purpose of an HECM is to help elderly homeowners supplement their income. Since every person has different financial duties, reverse mortgage specialists can work with applicants to find the best disbursement method. The first option is a lump sum, which most applicants deposit into their savings account. The second option is to establish monthly payments to the homeowner for a set number of years, or even for life says, Local Records Office. For people who have trouble handling money, this can provide a steady income. The third option creates a line of credit for the homeowner, to use at his or her own discretion. This is a wonderful choice for an applicant who has enough to handle month-to-month bills, but would not be able to pay for an unexpected expense such as a damaged car or a medical issue.

READ MORE: How Does Mortgage Really Work

When Does The Loan Come Due?

One of the biggest perks that reverse mortgage specialists like to tout is that an HECM allows people to stay in their residences until they pass away. Along with the original borrower, any non-borrowing spouse can also continue to live in the residence, payment free, until they die, as well says, Local Records Office. In order for borrowers to stay until death, they must continue to pay property taxes and insurance, provide the property with basic upkeep, and maintain the title in their own name. When the loan finally becomes due, the heirs of the property can pay it off and keep the residence, sell the house to settle the loan, or allow the bank to sell the house.

To learn more about real estate and Local Records Office go to http://www.LocalRecordsOffice.co

Quick Way To Lower Your Property Taxes Problem – Local Records Office

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE: If you are a property owner, you can hardly slither away from the clutches of paying taxes. Having spent your winter holidays and said adieu to your dear folks, you may be hit with a shock after seeing your annual property tax reports sitting inside your mailbox says, ‘Local Records Office’. Never panic if your consolidated tax for the year is skyrocketing! You can always find ways to sort things out even if it’s a herculean task.

Even if you are the rightful owner of your property, you often wonder why on earth am I spending big bucks on property taxes. No commotion. After all, the property you own rests on this very earth with distinctive territories that nations own says, ‘Local Records Office’. That is not to say that it’s a hard and fast rule and do not dare to give a second-thought. Try to analyze the tax report. How the levied tax has been broken down? Was there anything in it that’s misleading and calls for reassessment? Or perhaps property tax reduction?

Local Records Office: Property Tax Reduction

Knocking the doors of a tax assessor may be a viable solution for all your taxing money concerns. Indeed, it may lead to bringing his attention towards any loopholes in the drafted tax report. Or you may fax or email a property tax appeal letter to your county’s tax board highlighting the tax specifics for a change over. In fact, all the roads lead to Rome. Either way you can seek the help of tax officials, and if you put your heart in it, you soon notice finding themselves in a position to lower taxes for your property.

Watch out! No mindless prep ups before you make way for a tax assessor heading your property. Also, don’t be fooled underestimating him. All assessors are as prudent as a serpent. Better be an penniless implorer than a money-savvy treasurer in the eyes of a tax assessor.

Local Records Office: First Things First

Local Records Office says, “You can never come to a conclusion after going through your tax report in a single go. First up, walk down to your locality’s tax assessor office and ask earnestly for your property’s record card”. Browse through the card and to your surprise; you can see that it has a run-down about the nook and crannies of your property. It takes you virtually to your own property walking the length of your marked rooms and garage with their dimensions and scanning the property fixtures for its life and worth.

If you get going, you may happen to step into a bathroom or bedroom that does not exist at your property if you’ve been there. In such a case, you may bring this issue to the attention of a tax assessor at the office and do away with the false entry in the record card. Eventually, you may end up in property tax reduction to your own benefit.

Local Records Office: Sneak Peek Your Next Door

Don’t wear blinkers like horses while reevaluating your property and open your mind to explore your neighborhoods too says, Local Records Office. Does the build-out of your next-door buddy’s space is the same as that of your own? If so, have a crosscheck whether his total tax outstanding goes with what yours really is. Luckily, you come up with a mismatch and be sure don’t hesitate to make your move. Ask the tax assessor to look into it for reconsideration and guide you in property tax reduction.

This is when a tax advisor comes in handy to wash out your doubts on new construction. Rise up a lot of questions and finally, take a wise decision.

 

What Do Real Estate Realtors REALLY Do? Local Records Office

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE: Being a Real Estate Agent is interesting work; every day is different often with new clients and different properties, says, ‘Local Records Office’. But what exactly do Real Estate Agents do? Well this article will shed some light on the topic.

A Realtor’s job starts with meeting people. After a client relationship is created then the responsibilities depend on if the client is a home seller, buyer or both. Whichever the case maybe, there is a lengthy list of tasks that must be met.

What Do Real Estate Agents Professionals Do?

Local Records Office says, “There are many ways in which a client relationship can be made, probably the most common is by referral”. This is when a person tells a friend or family member about a positive experience they had buying or selling a home with a real estate professional. This source is often the strongest and easiest way for an agent to meet a client.

Other methods involve more work, financial investment, and time and may not have as strong results. Some of these methods include but are not limited to cold calling, hosting open houses, and knocking on doors, mailing literature, social media and more. To give you an understanding of how these processes work I will explain a scenario. Say a Realtor has a home to sell in an area he or she would like to do more sales says, ‘Local Records Office’. A common course of action would be to hold the home open on weekends so that neighbors and other interested parties can see the home and get the seller maximum exposure. Once the property is sold, the agent will assemble a “Just Sold” post card and mail it to every home in the neighborhood. The agent would be wise to sort out property owners, tenants, land lords then have every piece of mail address each individual accordingly. Once the mailer has arrived the agent may choose to walk the neighborhood and knock on doors introducing them self to people and talk about real estate. Through this process the agent is hoping to meet more people and develop relationships in the community.

The Relationship Between Agents and Clients

Once a client, agent relationship is established it must be determined what the client’s real estate goals are and how the Realtor can best help. If the client is looking to sell then a listing presentation is put together and entails the agent compiling a group of like properties that are for sale and recently sold in the area. With this information what is known as a CMA can be made. This tool is used to derive a value for the subject home. Once the client has decided to hire the agent then the contract and other disclosures must be compiled and signed. The sellers must disclose anything that could be considered a negative attribute for the home of the immediate area. And anything about real estate agents relationships, which could be confusing to the general public, must also be disclosed. Once all the paper work is done the agent and seller can develop a strategy to show case the home says, Local Records Office. This plan will involve things like possibly painting the home, cleaning the carpet, removing items, staging the home and figuring out when and how the home can be shown to prospective buyers.

Real Estate and Escrow Companies

When a home seller receives an accepted offer then an account must be opened with an escrow company to hold any money involved in the transaction. Generally speaking the homebuyer and seller will each have their own realtor representing them. Each party will have to coordinate on their client’s behalf. Things that will require attention during this time are a home inspection, termite inspection, negotiating repairs, an appraisal will need to be conducted and a final walk through of the property by the buyers says, ‘Local Records Office’. After all conditions have been satisfied then each Realtor will review the payments escrow will be responsible for and confirm the figures. Among many other things this is what a Realtors job consists of.

Home Closing Process Secrets Real Estate Agents Don’t Want You to Know – Local Records Office

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE: If you thought finding a home you love took a long time just wait until you begin the closing process says, ‘Local Records Office’. Many are under the impression that once a house is selected, they will be able to move in within a few days. This is rarely the case. Closing can be slow, and at times you may feel like you are completely stalled. Here are a few secrets to keeping the process moving along smoothly.

Local Records Office – Home Closing Process

  1. Put Your Agent to Work – A real estate agent‘s job is not just to show you homes and then sit back and wait to collect their commission check. No one can recognize potential problems to address as well as he or she can, especially if they have been in the industry for a while. You are paying your agent to work on your behalf, so don’t feel guilty about asking them to keep on top of things says, Local Records Office. They should be checking with all parties involved at least twice per week. If they identify a potential concern it can be addressed promptly before it becomes a lengthy delay
  1. Assign Deadlines to Everything – There is nothing more frustrating than a closing process being at a standstill because you are waiting for the current owner to handle repairs that they agreed to take care of. If you don’t assign deadlines to all major points of the closing agreements it can get dragged out for a long time.
  1. Don’t Make Changes to Your Finances – Just because you are pre-approved or pre-qualified does not mean you are in the clear says, Local Records Office. Keep your finances as stable as possible. This means no opening new lines of credit and make sure everything is paid on time. You also want to avoid applying for anything that would require a credit check.
  1. Check in with Your Lender – You may feel as though you should be your lender’s main priority, but you are not the only client who feels that way. Gathering all necessary documents ahead of time is helpful, but somewhere along the way, your lender will likely need some other random document or bit of information. Check in frequently to see how you can help.

READ MORE: Housing Terms 101 for First Time Homebuyers and Real Estate – Local Records Office

Local Records Office says, “You probably had people tell you that the process was going to take a while, but you did not fully understand just how slow it could be until the transaction was started”. Closing can drag, but if you use these tips, you can help to push it along a bit faster.

To learn more about home closing process and Local Records Office go to our website http://www.LocalRecordsOffices.com

DIY: How to Get Rid of Your Termite Problem in Your New Home – Local Records Office

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE: You just moved into your new home, after a few days you notice that you have a termite problem. What do you do now? Most of your saving went towards your down payment. ‘Local Records Office’ has created this easy and cheap DIY article to help you. Because we know termites are one of the most feared pests as their action can be devastating, not only in furniture and wooden objects, but even in the large structures of the home such as beams. It is important to act when there are visible signs of these insects in this house, as they act very quickly. Pest control professionals are best equipped to put an end to the problem.

Red Flags That Should Raise Concern on Inspection Local Records Office

Termite Problem Could be Very Serious

Local Records Office says, “Numerous pests and insects may infest you home, such as moths, flies, ants, etc. Of all the pests, however, termite infestations may be one of the most problematic, with devastating effects”. This is due to the fact that they feed on cellulose and therefore can ruin any surface or wood object and its derivatives, like wooden beams and other structural elements of a home. Needless to say, termites are small bugs that can cause big damage.

There are two types of termites:

  • Underground termites: live in damp earth. They are often not seen initially. They attack wooden structures and are very destructive.
  • Wood termites: these are visible and leave marks in the form of sawdust, holes in wood, traces, etc. These are usually noticed and exterminated before causing a lot of damage.

For this, we recommend that at the earliest evidence or symptoms of termites you contact a specialist in home pest control. Although they may be expensive, they know best and will be able to get rid of these annoying insects before it is too late. Remember that not doing anything about the termites right away will cost you more on home repair in the long run.

Termites Come in Colonies

Even so, there are some methods that can be used to put an end to the termites. Boric acid is an antiseptic that is available in pharmacies that it is also used to tackle infestations of ants and other insects.

There are also pesticides and other chemicals with which you can to try to eliminate the termites in your home. Go the Home Depot, DIY shop or specialist shop where they can inform you further.

READ MORE: Do a Mold Inspection Before Buying a House

Furthermore, there is also the possibility of using bait with pesticides to ensure that the termites carry these to their nests so all the insects die. This method is slow and not guaranteed, especially if the infestation is already extensive.

The fact is that the best method to eliminate the termites is by prevention. To stop them entering the home, cover all cracks and other corners where they can creep in. Also, monitor the furniture, especially the oldest pieces, to ensure that they are in perfect working order.

It is also important that you know how to prevent clothes moths, another of the common home pest.

To learn more about real estate and Local Records Office go to www.Local-Records-Office.org