Wednesday, April 28, 2010

As Dry as 60 Year Old Lead Based Paint

Here are three exciting things you can do on a Wednesday morning:

1) Watch (lead based or non-lead based) paint dry.
2) Read a Blog post about the new home buying rules regarding lead based paint.
3) WRITE a Blog post about the new home buying rules regarding lead based paint.

So, without further adieu, here are some new requirements for purchasing a home being financed by an FHA loan:

If the house was built in 1950 or earlier, the house MUST be tested for the presence of lead based paint regardless if there is any evidence of defective paint surfaces, either visible to the buyer or home inspector. Buyers can count on this adding about $200 - $300 over and above the cost of the standard home inspection. This test must be done by a licensed professional. All test results, positive or negative are to be shared with the buyer. If lead based paint is found, it must be remediated prior to closing, again by a licensed professional. I'm no expert, but I'm guessing this will cost in the hundreds, if not thousands of dollars.

If the house was built between 1951 - 1978, ANY "defective" paint notated by the FHA appraiser must be tested. All test results are to be shared with the buyer(s). Any defective paint (i.e. chipping, peeling, positive for lead, etc.) whether lead based or not, must be remediated by a licensed professional.

If the house was built between 1979 and today, no testing is required, because they are certain that no lead based paint was ever used to paint any home after the original rules went into effect.

Now, for those of you still awake after this scintillating post, I invite you to jump over to this other website I discovered:

Friday, April 16, 2010

Home Buyer Tax Credit Update

The Ann Arbor Area Board of Realtors staff has contacted the Michigan Association of REALTORS® (MAR) Legal Hotline to help clarify questions from members:

What constitutes a binding contract for home buyers to receive the Tax Credit? Does it need Bank Approval first?

The answer from MAR Legal Hotline is that the contract must be accepted by both the buyer and seller. If there is a third party involved (i.e., short sale), the bank DOES NOT need to approve the sale prior to the April 30, 2010 deadline.

Friday, April 9, 2010

March 2010 Ann Arbor Home Sales Report

I wish I could find those big fancy green UP Arrows that some of those financial sites use to show upward trends, because the Ann Arbor Real Estate sales trends continue in positive territory for the month of March. The number of listings are up by 3.7%, the number of sales in units are up by a substantial 22%, and best of all, the average sales price is up 7.7% month over month, and Year to Date by 6.8%.

FIRST: Listing inventory is up by 3.7%, from 707 Units in March 2009, to 733 Units in March 2010.

SECOND: In March 2010, sales in units, of single family homes were up by 22% over March 2009. This marks FIVE consecutive months of year over year sales growth:

November 2009: Sales up by 32%
December 2009: Sales up by 6%
January 2010: Sales up by 7.8%
February 2010: Sales up by 23%
March 2010: Sales up by 22%.

THIRD: The average sales price for Single Family Homes continues to rise over the same time period last year. In March 2010, ASP was up by 7.7% over March 2009. If my calculations are correct, since October 2009, when the average sales price for the year was a -15.5%, there has been an improvement of +24.3% in the average sales price of homes.

Here are the latest statistics from the Ann Arbor Board of Realtors. These numbers are for Single Family Homes (SFH) Residential, and do not include condominiums:

SFH Sales March 2009: 209
SFH Sales March 2010: 255
Increase: 22%

SFH Sales Y.T.D. 2009: 505
SFH Sales Y.T.D. 2010: 588
Increase: 16.4%

SFH Avg. Sales Price March 2009: $150,263
SFH Avg. Sales Price March 2010: $162,740
Increase: 7.7%

SFH Avg. Sales Price Y.T.D. 2009: $154,015
SFH Avg. Sales Price Y.T.D. 2010: $164,600
Increase: 6.8%

Thursday, April 1, 2010

April Ann Arbor Market Snapshot: Active Listings for Single Family Homes

The Ann Arbor Real Estate market is very busy for a number of good reasons. Lot's of great, new inventory is coming on the market every day. Here's just a brief snapshot of homes currently for sale in the Ann Arbor School District, broken down by price range.

Number On Market and Price Range

12 for sale at less than $100,000
145 for sale between $101K - $200K
144 for sale between $201K - $300K
50 for sale $301K - $400K
151 for sale $401 K and above

Lot's of great homes to choose from, and it's not too late to get under contract before the tax credit expires. If you'd like more information on specific homes in your price range, Mary and I would love the opportunity to help you find a great home. If' you'd like to get in the market, please get in touch with one of us today.