Thursday, January 3, 2019

January Lake of the Ozarks Real Estate Update


New Year, New Market?

     I think 2019 will move the needle from a seller’s market back to (but not completely) a more neutral market.  With that in mind, I know that many sellers have waited to make their home available, for numerous reasons, but primarily for the market pricing to peak.  The market is slowing, with many causes, including lack of inventory, high pricing, interest rates and concern about the economy. 
     Total properties sold in 2018 was almost identical to 2017 numbers with an average sales price increasing at 1.5%.  Lakefront home and condo sales both saw a decrease in the number of properties sold in 2018 with the average sales price continuing to increase. Lakefront lots sales were also down slightly with a steady increase in average sales price.
     Offwater properties made up for the decrease in lakefront sales.  Non waterfront home sales increased by 3.8% and had a small average sales price increase.  Non waterfront lot sales increased by 38%.
     New construction is up across the lake area.  Many of the clients I work with are now building on lots that they have owned for several years so the current lot sales don’t correlate to the amount of new construction that is occurring.
     The upper end market from $750,000 and up has been slow to nonexistent the past few years.  I believe this will start its comeback in 2019 but without the accelerated sales price that we have seen in the lower price ranges.  I think we will see those value start increasing in 2020 barring any national or global event that would affect buyer confidence.
     Commercial construction and activity is flourishing, another promising indicator.  Commercial sales increased 25% in 2018.  I feel that 2019 is going to be a booming year for Lake of the Ozarks.
     I have compiled this data from the Lake of the Ozarks Board of Realtors Multiple Listing System for the time frame beginning January 1, 2017 and ending December 31, 2018.
     Michael Elliott has been selling real estate at the Lake of the Ozarks since 1981.  He is one of the most respected brokers in the area.  If you would like to work with Michael in the sale or purchase of property, or have interest in a career in real estate, contact him at 573.365.SOLD or cme@yourlake.com  or stop by C. Michael Elliott & Associates, 3738 Osage Beach Parkway.  View thousands of lake area listings at www.YourLake.com.  You can also view each months’ article, ask questions and offer your opinion on Michael’s real estate blog, www.AsTheLakeChurns.com


Tuesday, November 27, 2018

December Lake of the Ozarks Real Estate Update

Sales Report


Sales of all property types year to date at of the end of October 2018 are up just slightly over one half percent compared to 2017.  The total number of new listings on the market is down by 10.69 percent so far this year.  The average sales price has increased 1.09 percent and the overall average days on the market has decreased 4.45 percent.
     Lakefront home new listings have decreased 13.6 percent in 2018 and the number of homes sold has also fallen by 8.64 percent.  The average sales price has continued to rise, with a 5.59 percent increase from 2017.  Average days on the market has decreased by 8.92 percent from 2017.  In 2018 the average time on the market is at just four months.
     The average time on the market for offshore homes has also decreased by 9.75 percent and is currently at three months and three weeks.  2018 average sales price has increased 2.88 percent and the number of homes sold increased 7 percent in 2018.
     The amount of new condo listings hitting the market in 2018 has decreased by 15.7 percent from 2017 with the amount of sold units also falling 3.7 percent.  The average sales price has increased 5 percent and the time on the market has reduced by 9.64 percent.
     Lakefront lots saw an increase of 6.7 percent in average sales price this year with the number sold falling 4.9%.  New lakefront lot listings has decreased 9 percent from 2017 and the average days on the market increased by 7 percent.
     Offshore lot sales increased substantially by 45 percent in 2018 with just a 2 percent increase in the amount of new listings made available.  The average sales price also increased by 5 percent and the average time on the market rose 18 percent and is slightly over six months.    
     Sales of farms increased 5.9 percent in 218 with a 20 percent increase in new listings on the market.  The average sales price increased by almost 3 percent and the time on the market rose 39 percent but is still low at about a three and a half month average.
     I have compiled this data from the Lake of the Ozarks Board of Realtors Multiple Listing System for the time frame beginning January 1, 2017 and ending October 31, 2018.
     Michael Elliott has been selling real estate at the Lake of the Ozarks since 1981.  He is one of the most respected brokers in the area.  If you would like to work with Michael in the sale or purchase of property, or have interest in a career in real estate, contact him at 573.365.SOLD or cme@yourlake.com  or stop by C. Michael Elliott & Associates, 3738 Osage Beach Parkway.  View thousands of lake area listings at www.YourLake.com.  You can also view each months’ article, ask questions and offer your opinion on Michael’s real estate blog, www.AsTheLakeChurns.com

Thursday, November 1, 2018

November Lake of the Ozarks Real Estate Update


3rd Quarter Stats 2018



Michael Elliott has been selling real estate at the Lake of the Ozarks since 1981.  He is one of the most respected brokers in the area.  If you have interest in a career in real estate or would like Michael’s assistance in the sale or purchase of property, contact him at 573.365.SOLD or cme@yourlake.com  View thousands of lake area listings at www.YourLake.com $1 million plus homes at www.LakeMansions.com   You can also view each months’ article, ask questions and offer your opinion on Michael’s real estate blog, www.AsTheLakeChurns.com

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

October Lake of the Ozarks Real Estate Update


     Surveillance Systems
With the progression of inexpensive technology; many homes now have video and audio surveillance systems that record the information to a local hard drive or a remote server.  The ease and convenience of these systems can go a long way toward providing peace of mind about keeping your home safe and secure.  They are also a great way for second homeowners to keep an eye on their property.  If you are a homeowner who has your home for sale; can it also be a great way to see what buyers think about your property?
     Before you choose to do this, please consider the laws in your state.  I am not an attorney and what is legal versus illegal when recording people without their knowledge differs from state to state.  You should consult an attorney with specific questions before you do anything along these lines.  I will share with you a summary of what I have researched regarding these laws in Missouri.

  1.      Per The Digital Media Law Project:  Missouri's wiretapping law is a "one-party consent" law. Missouri makes it a crime to intercept or record any "wire, oral, or electronic communication" unless one party to the conversation consents.  In Missouri, you may record a conversation or phone call if you are a party to the conversation or you get prior consent from one party to the conversation, unless you are doing so to commit a criminal or torturous act.  Missouri also prohibits the disclosure or use of the contents of any wire communication obtained in violation of this section. Violation of the Missouri law is a class D felony, punishable by imprisonment and fine.  In addition to subjecting you to criminal prosecution, violating the Missouri wiretapping law can expose you to a civil lawsuit for damages by an injured party.  

     This law only extends to oral communications which are "uttered by a person exhibiting an expectation that such communication is not subject to interception under circumstances justifying such expectation.".  You may be able to record in-person conversations occurring in a public place where there is no reasonable expectation of privacy without consent.
     My opinion from researching the law and taking ethics into consideration is that a buyer should be made aware if a home they are viewing has recording devices.  I think any advantage you may gain is not worth the possible repercussions.  I also believe disclosing this to the potential buyer is the honest and right thing to do.
     My suggestion to buyers and their agents is to be mindful that homes may have recording systems and be conscious of your conversations while viewing a home.  You can also make a habit of inquiring whether a home you are considering has such a system.
     Disclosure of surveillance systems should be easily accomplished by posting a sign at your entrance stating that this home has an audio and video recording system.  I also believe that this disclosure should also be made to other agents conducting showings either via the MLS or other form of communication.  If the system is to be included in the sale of your home, this could be a plus to the buyer.  If you would prefer not to disclose this information, I suggest turning off the devices during showings.  The reason owners are asked to leave during showings is so buyers can have privacy and feel comfortable while looking at a home.  To record them without their knowledge seems like an invasion of privacy and lack of respect, in my opinion, even if it is your home.  
    Michael Elliott has been selling real estate at the Lake of the Ozarks since 1981.  He is one of the most respected brokers in the area.  If you have interest in a career in real estate or would like Michael’s assistance in the sale or purchase of property, contact him at 573.365.SOLD or cme@yourlake.com  View thousands of lake area listings at www.YourLake.com $1 million plus homes at www.LakeMansions.com   You can also view each months’ article, ask questions and offer your opinion on Michael’s real estate blog, www.AsTheLakeChurns.com

Thursday, August 23, 2018

September Lake of the Ozarks Real Estate Update



Data obtained from the Lake of the Ozarks MLS for January 1, 2015 thru July 9, 2018.
Michael Elliott has been selling real estate at the Lake of the Ozarks since 1981.  He is one of the most respected brokers in the area.  If you have interest in a career in real estate or would like Michael’s assistance in the sale or purchase of property, you can reach him at 573.365.SOLD or cme@yourlake.com  View thousands of lake area listings at www.YourLake.com $1 million plus homes at www.LakeMansions.com   You can also view each months’ article, ask questions and offer your opinion on Michael’s real estate blog, www.AsTheLakeChurns.com

Friday, July 20, 2018

August Lake of the Ozarks Real Estate Update



Home Warranty Plans
Frequently in the home buying or selling process, buyers encounter homes whose sellers are offering home warranties.  Both buyers and seller (and some agents) are frequently under the impression that these warranties cover most, if not all, costs to repair or replace things that fail in the home.
A home warranty is a contractual agreement provided to an owner of a house by any of a number of different types of entities. In the case of this article, I am referring to “home warranty” companies.   The home warranty industry was founded in 1971 by American Home Shield.  In the strictest legal sense a warranty of any kind must adhere to guidelines set at the states' and federal government's levels. But the word “warranty” is not always used explicitly to mean a legal warranty is being conveyed. Usually, a home warranty is not a warranty at all but rather a home service contract that covers the repair and/or replacement costs of home appliances, plumbing, heating and cooling and electrical systems, and possibly other components. Coverage and costs vary significantly across home warranty companies and home warranty contracts do not cover all home repairs.
Some home plans are more expensive and cover more items while others are more limited.  Most require that you pay a service fee, around $50 to $100 per incident and also have a maximum amount that they will pay per covered item and a limit on what they will pay in total.  Be sure that you are aware of what the coverage exclusions are and if the company pays the full cost of replacing an item or its depreciated value. 
Some common complaints that home warranty clients have about warranty companies are:            1. Deny the claim citing homeowner's maintenance negligence or “pre-existing problem”
2.  Repair the equipment even when it is in such bad shape as to be replaced (which may keep it running until your warranty ends)
3.  Utilize sub-standard service providers (the warranty company chooses the provider), this issue is often attributed to the fact that they have negotiated lower rates from these providers
Most warranty companies have a “Sample” Coverage Terms document that outlines what is included and excluded as well as some other terms.  These generally look pretty good.  Many have fine (miniscule) print that references a cover/front page that details specific coverage on the particular home.  Make sure you have all information before making a decision.
One of the best preventive measures you can take to reduce the risk of nasty equipment failure surprise after closing is to schedule a thorough home inspection (by a reputable, knowledgeable company).  Your purchase contract should allow for an inspection and have a date by which you must complete and report any issues to the seller.  If their response is that the home warranty will cover it, look over the coverage terms AND make a call to the warranty company to verify this.
A great resource for home warranty information and reviews of existing companies as well as a list of ones no longer in business (some reportedly still selling warranties) is the website;   www.HomeWarrantyReviews.com .
A home warranty can be a great asset, you just need to do a little homework to make sure you know as a seller what you are offering and as a buyer what you are receiving.  

Michael Elliott has been selling real estate at the Lake of the Ozarks since 1981.  He is one of the most respected brokers in the area.  If you have interest in a career in real estate or would like Michael’s assistance in the sale or purchase of property, you can reach him at 573.365.SOLD or cme@yourlake.com  View thousands of lake area listings at www.YourLake.com $1 million plus homes at www.LakeMansions.com   You can also view each months’ article, ask questions and offer your opinion on Michael’s real estate blog, www.AsTheLakeChurns.com



Thursday, June 28, 2018

July Lake of the Ozarks Real Estate Update


Understanding Earnest Money

Make sure you fully grasp what an earnest-money deposit is—namely, proof that a buyer is committed to completing a sale by having skin in the game. The earnest-money deposit is a negotiable amount between the buyer and seller, but usually about 1% to 2% of the purchase price (although it can shoot up to 10%). This money is generally held by the seller's broker or a title company, to be used as a credit toward the down payment and closing costs.

In an aggressive seller's market, many homes receive multiple offers from anxious buyers. One of the ways to make an offer stand out is to offer a considerable earnest money deposit.  If a high earnest-money deposit scares you, remember you'll have to come up with the down payment 30 to 45 days after making an offer, anyway.  For example, on a $500,000 mortgage, a 15% down payment is $75,000.

One mistake buyers make with their earnest-money deposit is agreeing to remove contingencies   they may legitimately need.  For instance, if buyers agree to remove a loan contingency and their loan falls through, they'll lose their earnest money.  Other contingencies, such as a home that's uninsurable, inspection issues, a problematic title search, or if a house doesn't appraise—also protect a buyer by allowing the penalty-free canceling of a contract.  Make sure you are aware of all deadlines and contract requirements and stay on top of the timeline for completion or termination of the contract for valid reasons.

This may seem like a no-brainer, but it's easy to get swept away by a home's cool features when you first see it. Also, in a rapid paced market, you can become overly anxious about buying.  A buyer may put in an offer only to realize days later that granite counters and stainless appliances are incredible but the overall floor plan just doesn’t work for your needs.  Make sure that you're 100% serious about buying a home before making an offer.  If you get cold feet and back out, it's likely that you won't get your money back.

Know when to let it go.  I have worked with clients who have had major life changes during the midst of purchasing a home.  Unless you are working with an extremely understanding seller, they will most likely expect to keep the earnest money deposit.  After all, they have taken their property off the market in order for you to proceed with the purchase.  There will also be other expenses that would normally be paid at closing that your deposit will need to cover.

Personal problems may be very serious to you, but they're not a valid reason to cancel a home purchase. And if you're bailing on a deal with no legal justification, fighting for your earnest money deposit is probably a waste of time.    

Michael Elliott has been selling real estate at the Lake of the Ozarks since 1981.  He is one of the most respected brokers in the area.  If you have interest in a career in real estate or would like Michael’s assistance in the sale or purchase of property, you can reach him at 573.365.SOLD or cme@yourlake.com  View thousands of lake area listings at www.YourLake.com $1 million plus homes at www.LakeMansions.com   You can also view each months’ article, ask questions and offer your opinion on Michael’s real estate blog, www.AsTheLakeChurns.com