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Twin Cities Housing Report October 2018

The Minneapolis-St Paul Housing Market Overview

As we look at the Twin Cities Housing Market Statistics for the first month of the final quarter of 2018 the one thing that hasn’t changed for months is the shortage of properties for sale in the lower end of the market. With so few homes that fit their budget, coupled with rising home prices and interest rates, would-be buyers continue to struggle with fulfilling their dream of ownership. Homes at this price range are still selling quickly, but we are finally starting to see that shift we have been talking about, in market conditions overall as we look at narrowing gaps in year over year data for sales, inventory, and price.

What’s Up Doc?

As we compare October of this year to October 2017, we find new listings up 9.2 percent, closed sales rose 3.4 percent, the percentage of list price received up 0.2, and the median sale price of $265,000 up 8.6 percent. Meanwhile, pending sales were down 1.7 percent, inventory levels dropped 2.2 percent, days on the market fell 7.7 percent. In summary, in the Twin Cities 16 county metro at least, we are still experiencing fewer homes on the market taking less time to sell with prices even on an upward trajectory.

What About the Economy?

Our local economy remains strong. The ...

Winter is On the Way. Be Ready!

Winter Minnesota Property Group

Ready or Not, Winter is Here

If you have been in denial that winter is right around the corner, it’s a reasonable assumption that you are probably not ready to welcome it. That small dusting of snow on the ground should be a hint. It's winter's way of saying, "Ready or not, I'll be visiting you soon!" 

Getting caught off guard happens to the best of us. Take heart. Until we get hit with single digit temperatures or significant snowfall you still have time to get ready for the season. More good news, a warming trend is expected to move in this week.

For those of us who meant well but never quite got around to tackling the fall home checklist, Mother Nature is giving Joe Houghton us a second chance. She is nice that way sometimes. Kiss Here are the fundamental ways to prepare for the worse that winter can throw at you.

Winter Minnesota Property Group...

Twin Cities Housing Report September 2018

5315 Howards Point Excelsior Mn

The Minneapolis-St Paul Housing Market

Some say there are indications in the September housing stats that the market might be starting a shift towards balance. New listings increased 5.9 percent compared to September of last year. However, when we look at months supply of inventory that was down 3.4 percent.  So what does this mean?

Let’s keep in mind that although we see balance in the market pricing tier for $500,000 and above, inventory levels in all other price segments are not even close to approaching balance which is a five to six month level of homes for sale. If you are one of those hoping to break into the housing market, your choices are limited with desirable properties selling like lightning going through butter.

Probing into the data, we see that median sales prices are still higher than last year by 6.5 percent when we look at month to month and 7.7 percent over last year when we compare the year over year data.  Closed sales are down 5.8 percent and pending down 1.8 percent with properties spending 16 percent less time to sell.

Interest rates are bobbing around the 5 percent rate for mortgages which, combined with higher prices of homes may be sidelining some buyers and forcing others to rethink their home buying strategies. These...

Elegance, Lifestyle and Lake Views in Shorewood

5315 Howards Point Excelsior Mn

5315 Howards Point Road, Shorewood, Minnesota 55661

Lake Minnetonka 2.22 acre estate featuring 250 feet of shoreline

6 Bedrooms and 9 Baths, 9075 Square Feet

Proudly offered at $5,750,000

3D Tour and photo album

5315 Howards Point Excelsior Mn

A Majestic Presence on Lake Minnetonka

Sitting majestically on the shore of Lake Minnetonka in Shorewood is one of the area’s most breath-taking homes. It’s so grand; you might expect to see Prince Harry and Meghan Markle walk into the grand foyer for an evening of cocktails and dinner. It’s a home that would feel comfortable with heads of state, titans of business and industry, and world-renowned celebrities of...

Look What We Found in Edina

5901 Chowen Ave S Edina MN

5901 Chowen Ave S

Edina, MN

4 Bedrooms, 2 Baths, 2,350 square feet offered at $449,900

Who says you can’t have your cake and eat it too?  Tucked away in a lovely neighborhood of Edina we fund a delightful mid-century rambler. This fabulous tastefully updated family home has all the amenities on today’s family wish list.

Great Location

You cannot beat this location. Edina is one of the most desirable 1st tier suburbs of Minneapolis. The new owners will appreciate the easy access to both Highway 100 and 35 and the Crosstown. Surrounded by parks, lakes, shopping, fun, and food with a 15-minute commute to downtown Minneapolis, what more could you ask for? Great Schools? You have that too. Edina has a nationally recognized school system which has been a magnet for families with kids over the years.

5901 Chowen Ave S Edina MN...

Fall Home Buying Rewards

Fall Home Buying Season

The Fall Home Buying Puzzle

With summer in the rearview mirror, the fall home buying season is in full swing. As we move into the last quarter of the year, many disappointed summer home shoppers wonder if they should suspend their search to renew efforts in the spring.

As you ponder the question, you should take into consideration that the fall home buying season has some distinct advantages. Instead of taking a break, you may want to stay with the program and intensify your search for a home. Here are some of the perks and rewards you can expect if you decide to stay engaged in the hunt for a home.

Fall Home Buying Means Less Competition

Like most markets, real estate has seasonal adjustments. Fall home buying season is generally less busy than the spring and summer markets. The “must buy a home before school starts” mentality is one reason. Another is that some people do not want to move in the winter months.

Those who have no school-age kiddos or are more flexible about their moving timetable can take advantage of that market slowdown. They will find less competition for homes...

The Ultimate Fall Home Maintenance Checklist

Fall on Lake Front Home

Getting Your Home Ready for Winter

That nip we feel in the air means fall is here. The season is synonymous with pumpkins, falling leaves, apple cider, and preventive home maintenance! What? Home maintenance - You know, like working around the house.

If you are a long time homeowner, you know this drill. If this is your first home, listen up! Most of the necessary chores you can do yourself. Accomplishing these tasks will not only protect your investment but can also lower your energy bills.

While temperatures are still moderate, and before the snow flies let’s get cracking! Here is my 21 step checklist. Accomplish them all, and you and your home will be as prepared for winter as you can be. Your family and your home will thank you for it.

Yard and Landscaping

1. The lawn needs some attention now if you want it to look its best in the spring. The autumn is the perfect time to aerate, fertilize and reseed your lawn.

2. Never allow piles of leaves to sit on your grass for the winter....

August 2018 Twin Cities Housing Snapshot

Centennial Lake Park August 2018 Housing Stats

The Minneapolis-St Paul Housing Market Overview

As we look at the end of the summer real estate season, things have not changed very much. We see new listings up 7.6 percent over August of last year, which is a bright spot. However, for first-time home buyers, the story is still one of the limited housing choices facing continued strong demand. The situation when we look at listings under $300,000 is still critical regarding supply. The higher we go up the price tiers, the more balance we see. Properties priced from $500,000 up to $1,000,000, offer a more balanced market in which buyers have more options compared to the over $1,000,000, strata, which is a buyers market.

Looking deeper into the data gives us some reason to be optimistic but cautiously so. Even though we saw an increase in new listings, inventory levels fell 8 percent from last year. Pending sales were down 2.9 percent and closed sales ticked slightly upward at 0.2 percent over the same time last year. Home values continue to move upward to the tune of 6.3 percent while spending less time on the market. Buyers at the lower price range are making full price offers or engage in bidding wars to close a deal.   

New Construction in the Metro...

Plymouth MN Home Searching for New Family

2860 Zanzibar Lane N Plymouth, MN

2860 Zanzibar Lane N Plymouth, MN.

4 Bedrooms, 3 Baths, 2148 Square Feet, Offered at $374,900

Open House: 9/16 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM

If you are on a search for a home in the award winning Wayzata School District we’ve got you covered. This stylish tri-level home is open and bright and offers warmth, charm, and comfort coupled with modern functionality. All the features and amenities on most buyers’ wish list are present in this well-appointed home, and you will love the improvements and updates that have recently been done by the current owners.

Four bedrooms and three baths on three levels of beautiful living space offer your family lots to enjoy.  Its excellent location is convenient to highways, shopping, parks, and recreation. Located in the sought after neighborhood of Mapledell, this outstanding home is right off the Maple Creek Trail and Park. Did we mention your kiddos would attend ...

First-Time Buyer Mortgage Myths

First Time Home Buyer Mortgage Myths

First Time Home Buyer Options in the Twin Cities

It’s an indisputable fact that buying a home today is a complicated process. It can be especially intimidating for a first-time buyer. Also, there is a severe shortage of inventory in the category of entry-level homes making the transition into homeowner a challenge. The home buying process in the Twin Cities Metro is not as simple as searching for a house, finding one that suits you, making an offer and going to closing. Although these are indeed the basics, it is not the complete picture. There are a lot of pesky details that are not understood and become fertile ground for the seeds of mistaken beliefs.  The topic that seems to represent the most confusion is obtaining a mortgage. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most common myths about mortgage eligibility.

First Time Home Buyer Mortgages and Myths

Many people still believe you need a 20% down payment to buy a home in MN. No, you don't. Although a buyer needs to put 20 percent down on a home to avoid paying Private Mortgage Insurance, most can buy a house with much less money. When you look at real estate market statistics for home...

Twin Cities Metro Housing Market Statistics July 2018

Minnesota Property Group Housing Stats July 2018

July 2018 Snapshot – Twin Cities Housing

As we look at the data for July, we see the reason for buyers to be a bit more optimistic.  Although this is still a market that favors sellers at price ranges under $500,000, we did see an increase of 4.1 percent in new listings when compared to July of last year. However, buyers should hold off popping the cork on that bottle of champagne because it is sellers that have a reason to celebrate with the median sale price up 6.6 percent over the same time last year. Pending sales were up 0.4 percent and closed transactions were flat with days on the market falling 17.4 percent and inventory levels down 13.4 percent.  

Although we hear the terms “housing market bubble” and “real estate market shift” being bandied about by analysts, economic indicators may be pointing to a slowdown but not a bursting bubble. Past the middle of the year and heading into the end of summer we continue to see record low unemployment and the longest running bull market in history, in spite of trade wars and rumblings about impeachment. While we may be wise to pay attention to the former, history proves the latter will have little or no effect on stocks, housing or the economy in general.  ...

We Found a Hidden Treasure in Minnetonka

1512 Fairfield Rd S Minnetonka  MN Property Group

1512 Fairfield Rd S, Minnetonka, Minnesota 55305

Offered at $524,900

Open House: Sunday 8/12 2:30-4:00 PM

If you are looking for a great family home in a sought after community with excellent schools we have the perfect choice for you. Consider this gracious and elegant three bedrooms three bath residence in Minnetonka. With 2376 square feet of living space this traditionally styled two story home not only fits the needs of a family but is also the perfect setting for entertaining.

Prepare to be inspired by classic style with undertones of warmth and contemporary elegance. From your first glimpse, it is obvious this home is meticulous. We are very impressed, and you will be too! 

1512 Fairfield Rd S Minnetonka  MN Property Group ...

Family Wanted for West Bloomington Rambler

8917 Morris Road Bloomington/ Minnesota Property Grouop

8917 Morris Road, Bloomington, MN

3 Bedrooms, 2 Baths, 2020 square feet

Offered at $299,900

We proudly present our newest listing. Located in an established neighborhood in desirable west Bloomington, this property would make an exceptional family residence for a first-time buyer or move up situation. It would also be an excellent option for the empty nester.  This home is meticulous, and we think the fussiest buyer will agree. When you see the tasteful updates, expect to be impressed. The fresh décor is right on point. Let’s take a closer look.

8917 Morris Road Bloomington/ Minnesota Property Grouop

At the rear of the home are my absolute favorite areas, the kitchen and dining space. The kitchen is bright, open and extremely well designed to make the best use of space. There are ample cabinets and countertops. Two windows let in plenty of light and make the kitchen bright and cheerful. The classic cherry cabinets add just the perfect touch of warmth. And did I mention the stainless steel appliances? Now I did!

8917 Morris Road Bloomington/ Minnesota Property Grouop...

The Ten Commandments of Home Selling

Success-driven Home Selling 

Most people have two primary goals when they sell their home. These are to sell quickly at the best price possible. Both are attainable and if your location is TheTwin Cities metro and your home value is under $500,000, the market favors you in a big way.  

However, please do not think that you will achieve these goals if you ignore the basic rules of how to prepare to sell your home. If you want multiple offers and you want them in the first few days of listing you need to accept the fact that preparation is necessary.  If your home’s list price is in the higher tiers, it becomes even more critical.  

Convinced?  Fabulous! Here are my ten commandments of home selling. Follow these, and you will present your home at its finest. 

The Ten Commandments of Home Selling - Minnesota Property Group

Clutter is not aesthetically appealing. It makes your home look messy and lacking in storage space. The goal is to go through every closet, cabinet, drawer and storage space from basement to attic. Don’t forget the garage and any outbuildings as well. Everything you decide you do not need should be for sale, consignment, donation or disposal.

For some, this step is no big deal, and for others, this is...

Outstanding Home in Exceptional Plymouth, MN

2914 Urbandale Lane N Plymouth, MN

2940 Urbandale Ave N, Plymouth Minnesota 55447

Offered at $499,900

If you are looking for your next home in or around Plymouth, please consider this traditionally styled residence in the desirable Greentree Forest neighborhood. This 3504 square foot residence features four bedrooms and baths, oozes charm and cozy warmth. From the first glimpse, it is obvious this home is meticulously and lovingly maintained. When you learn of the numerous improvements and updates made by the current owners, you’ll be sure your eyes didn’t deceive you.

So what exactly do we like so much about this outstanding family home?  Lots!  Please join us on our mini-tour as we check off all the great attributes of our favorite new listing.

2940 Urbandale Lane N Plymouth, MN

Easy Peasy Commute and Great Metro Access

...

Twin Cities Housing Market Review June 2018

Minnesota Property Group Housing Stats June 2018

June 2018 Snapshot – Twin Cities Housing

As we close out the second quarter of the year and head into summer nothing much has changed regarding the ups and downs of Minneapolis-Saint Paul housing stats. Anyone who has been following the housing market in the Twin Cities will not be surprised by the June data. Inventory of homes continues to decline, ditto closed sales, pending sales, and days on the market. What’s up? The median sale price continues to rise. The constraint on sales is a reflection of low supply alone while demand remains strong. 

We are halfway into the year with a strong economy and a real estate market that is responding accordingly. Consumers continue to have confidence and a positive outlook for the future. With unemployment at all-time lows and wages rising, home buyers have a reason to be optimistic. Even with interest rates inching upward, demand for homes remains steady.

On the supply side, builders are shifting resources from rental units to single family new construction. Sellers are also considering this may be the best year to make their move and listings are expected to increase accordingly. Things are looking rosy, and...

A Dream of a Home in West Bloomington

9725 Xylon Court S, Bloomington, MN 55438 - Minnesota Property Group - Joe Houghton

9725 Xylon Court S, Bloomington, MN 55438

4130 Square Feet, 5 Bedrooms, 4 Baths Offered at $599,900

Open House Sunday July 22nd from 2-4pm

When we think of the Minneapolis metro suburbs that have it all, West Bloomington is at the top of the list. That’s why we are excited about Joe’s new listing in the desirable South Bay neighborhood. This delightful two-story home offers your family 4130 square feet of luxury on three levels of living space.

Five bedrooms mean everyone has their own private room plus accommodation for visiting family and friends. Four bathrooms mean never having to say you’re sorry for that long luxurious shower. Several distinct gathering areas indicate everyone can do their own thing or have lots of room for entertaining friends and neighbors.

With so many outstanding features to talk about in this elegant home, it is difficult to know where to begin. Here are a few of our favorites.

...

Outstanding Curb Appeal Can Sell Your Home

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Outstanding Curb Appeal - Minnesota Property Group

Make That Home Sale with Curb Appeal

When you sell, curb appeal is the first impression your home will make on a buyer.  Do it right, and you could end up with an offer, just like that! Do it wrong, and a potential buyer may decide not to walk through your front door.  So when evaluating your curb appeal as you prepare to sell your home, be critical because I promise you that buyers will be.

Pretend you are a buyer. Take a look around the outside of your house and yard. Now ask yourself, if you were buying today would the exterior of your home inspire you to take a look inside?  If the answer is anything less than, “I can’t wait to see the inside of this house” then you have a bit of work to do. Here are a few steps that will send your curb appeal rating meter over the top. 

Clean Up

Just as you do inside your home, you should “pick up” in the front and backyard, porch and deck. You want it clean and tidy. Remove any remaining dead leaves, branches, and other debris from the previous season. Oil stains on the driveway...

Stage Your Home to Impress Buyers

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Staged Home Utica Ave St Louis Park MN

The Argument for Staging

Once you have organized your home and removed its clutter, it’s time to talk about staging.  In a 2017 study conducted by NAR, the National Association of Realtors, 58% of agents surveyed said staging increases the selling price of the home as much as 20%. In this same profile, we find that 39% of agents believe staged properties sell significantly faster than those not staged. Additionally, 77% of buyers found it easier to visualize a staged property as their new home. 

Keep in mind that the objective of sellers is to prepare their home so buyers will envision themselves living there. If a buyer cannot make a personal and emotional attachment to your property, they are not going to make an offer. You want your buyers to fall in love with your house. Staging can go a long way towards making that happen.

Staged Home Utica Ave St Louis Park MN...

Sell Your Home Like a Boss

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Sell Your Home Like a Boss lead photo

Tips to Control Stress When Selling Your Home

When you sell a home, the experience has the inherent potential to be stressful. Not only is the rhythm of your daily life at the mercy of showings, but your home has to look tip-top for potential buyers.  Your privacy is held hostage to strangers opening closets and drawers as they snoop into your nooks and crannies. Yikes!  That is enough to get the calmest nerves twitching.

There are many moving parts to the sale of a house. There are many individuals involved in that sale. Any of these or a combination of several can become the stress source for the homeowner. These are factors the seller has no control over, zip, zero, none! However, there are many aspects of the home-selling process where the property owner can have power over the outcome. Making better decisions at the beginning of the process increases the likelihood of having a superior selling experience.

Since I have sat in the seller seat myself on a few occasions, I have gathered some morsels of wisdom on the subject. Since I love to share, as one seller to another, here are my best tips for a successful home sale.

Hire A Great Real Estate Agent

There are a few different ways people go about finding a real...

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