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Michael Jones


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Top 4 Home Renovations for Maximum ROI [INFOGRAPHIC]



Top 4 Home Renovations for Maximum ROI [INFOGRAPHIC] | MyKCM

Some Highlights:

  • Whether you are selling your home, just purchased your first home, or are a homeowner planning to stay put for a while, there is value in knowing which home improvement projects will net you the most “Return On Investment” (ROI).
  • While big projects like adding a bathroom or a complete remodel of a kitchen are popular ways to increase a home’s value, something as simple as updating landscaping and curb appeal can have a quick impact on a home’s value.

Your Friends Are Crazy Wrong If They're Telling You Not to Buy


Your Friends Are Crazy Wrong If They're Telling You Not to Buy

Your Friends Are Crazy Wrong if They're Telling You Not to Buy | MyKCM

The current narrative is that home prices have risen so much so in the Greensboro and Summerfield real estate market that it is no longer a smart idea to purchase a home. Your family and friends might suggest that buying a home right now (whether a first-time home or a move-up home) makes absolutely no sense from an affordability standpoint. They are wrong!

Homes are more affordable right now in the Piedmont Triad than at almost any time in our country’s history except for the foreclosure years (2009-2015) when homes sold at major discounts. As an example, below is a graph from the latest Black Knight Mortgage Monitor showing the percentage of median income needed to buy a medium-priced home in the country today in comparison to prior to the housing bubble and bust.

Your Friends Are Crazy Wrong if They're Telling You Not to Buy | MyKCM

As we can see, the percentage necessary is less now than in those time periods.

The Mortgage Monitor also explains that home affordability is better today than it was in the late 1990s in 47 of 50 states.

Your Friends Are Crazy Wrong if They're Telling You Not to Buy | MyKCM

Bottom Line

Your friends and family have your best interests at heart. However, when it comes to buying your first home or selling your current house to buy the home of your dreams, let’s get together to discuss what your best move is, now. Please call me at (336) 750-6453 or (800) 950-6453 or visit our website at www.forsalegreensboro.com  Realtor Michael Jones RE/MAX Of Greensboro 204 Muirs Chapel Rd Greensboro NC 27410.

Feeling 'Stuck in Place'? You Aren't Alone... And There's Hope!


Feeling 'Stuck in Place'? You Aren't Alone... And There's Hope!

Feeling ‘Stuck in Place’? You Aren’t Alone… And There’s Hope! | MyKCM

Whether you are a renter who is searching for your dream home or a homeowner who feels like your only option is to renovate, you have at least one thing in common: feeling stuck in place.

According to data from the National Association of Realtors’ Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, the average amount of time that a family stays in their home remained at 10 years in 2017. This mark ties the highest marks set in 2014 and 2016. Back in 1985, when data was first collected on this subject, homeowners stayed in their homes for an average of only 5 years.

There are many reasons why homeowners have decided to stay and not to sell. A recent Wall Street Journal article had this to say,

“Americans aren’t moving in part because inventory levels have fallen near multidecade lows and home prices have risen to records. Many homeowners are choosing to stay and renovate, in turn making it more difficult for renters to enter the market.”

Sam Khater, Deputy Chief Economist for CoreLogic, equated the lack of inventory to “not having enough oil in your car and your gears slowly [coming] to a grind.”

Historically, a normal market (in which prices increase at the rate of inflation) requires a 6-7 month supply of inventory. There hasn’t been that much supply since August of 2012! Over the course of the last 12 months, inventory has hovered between a 3.5 to 4.4-month supply, meaning that prices have increased and buyers are still out in force!

Challenges in the new-home construction market have “helped create a bottleneck in the market in which owners of starter homes aren’t trading up to newly built homes, which tend to be pricier, in turn creating a squeeze for millennial renters looking to get into the market.”

“Economists said baby boomers also aren’t in a hurry to trade in the dream homes they moved into in middle age for condominiums or senior living communities because many are staying healthy longer or want to remain near their children.”

So, what can you do if you feel stuck & want to move on?

Don’t give up! If you are looking to move-up to an existing luxury home, there are deals to be had in the higher-priced markets. Demand is strong in the starter and trade-up home markets which means that your house will sell quickly. Let’s work together to build in contingencies that allow you more time to find your dream home; the right buyer will wait.

7 Reasons to List Your Home This Holiday Season


7 Reasons to List Your Home This Holiday Season

7 Reasons to List Your Home This Holiday Season | MyKCM

Every year at this time, many homeowners decide to wait until after the holidays to put their homes on the market for the first time, while others who already have their homes on the market decide to take them off until after the holidays.

Here are seven great reasons not to wait:

  1. Relocation buyers are out there. Many companies are still hiring throughout the holidays and need their employees in their new positions as soon as possible.
  2. Purchasers who are looking for homes during the holidays are serious buyers and are ready to buy now.
  3. You can restrict the showings on your home to the times you want it shown. You will remain in control.
  4. Homes show better when decorated for the holidays.
  5. There is less competition for you as a seller right now. Let’s take a look at listing inventory as compared to the same time last year:

7 Reasons to List Your Home This Holiday Season | MyKCM

  1. The desire to own a home doesn’t stop when the holidays come. Buyers who were unable to find their dream home during the busy spring and summer months are still searching!
  2. The supply of listings increases substantially after the holidays. Also, in many parts of the country, new construction will continue to surge reaching new heights in 2018, which will lessen the demand for your house.

Bottom Line

Waiting until after the holidays to sell your home probably doesn’t make sense.

Mortgage Interest Rates Are Going Up... Should I Wait to Buy?


Mortgage Interest Rates Are Going Up... Should I Wait to Buy?

Mortgage interest rates, as reported by Freddie Mac, have increased over the last several weeks. Freddie Mac,along with Fannie Mae, the Mortgage Bankers Association and the National Association of Realtors, is calling for mortgage rates to continue to rise over the next four quarters.

This has caused some purchasers to lament the fact that they may no longer be able to get a rate below 3.5%. However, we must realize that current rates are still at historic lows.

Here is a chart showing the average mortgage interest rate over the last several decades:

Mortgage Interest Rates Are Going Up… Should I Wait to Buy? | MyKCM

Bottom Line

Though you may have missed getting the lowest mortgage rate ever offered, you can still get a better interest rate than your older brother or sister did ten years ago, a lower rate than your parents did twenty years ago, and a better rate than your grandparents did forty years ago.

5 Reasons Homeownership Makes 'Cents'


The American Dream of homeownership is alive and well in Greensboro and Summerfield North Carolina. Recent reports show that the US homeownership rate has rebounded from recent lows and is headed in the right direction. The personal reasons to own differ for each buyer, but there are many basic similarities.

Today Realtor Michael Jones with RE/MAX Of Greensboro wants to talk about the top 5 financial reasons you should own your own home.

  1. Homeownership is a form of forced savings– Paying your mortgage each month allows you to build equity in your home that you can tap into later in life for renovations, to pay off high-interest credit card debt, or even send a child to college. As a renter, you guarantee that your landlord is the person with that equity.
  2. Homeownership provides tax savings– One way to save on taxes is to own your own home. You may be able to deduct your mortgage interest, property taxes, and profits from selling your home, but make sure to always check with your accountant first to find out which tax advantages apply to you in your area.
  3. Homeownership allows you to lock in your monthly housing cost– When you purchase your home with a fixed-rate mortgage, you lock in your monthly housing cost for the next 5, 15, or 30 years. Interest rates have remained around 4% all year, marking some of the lowest rates in history. The value of your home will continue to rise with inflation, but your monthly costs will not.
  4. Buying a home is cheaperthan renting – According to the latest report from Trulia, it is now 37.4% less expensive to buy a home of your own than to rent in the US. That number varies throughout the country but ranges from 6% cheaper in San Jose, CA to 57% cheaper in Detroit, MI.
  5. No other investment lets you live inside of it– You can choose to invest your money in gold or the stock market, but you will still need somewhere to live. In a home that you own, you can wake up every morning knowing that your investment is gaining value while providing you a safe place to live.

Bottom Line

Before you sign another lease, let’s get together to help you better understand all your options. As a life long resident, I specialize in Real estate in Greensboro, High Point, Winston Salem, Oak Ridge and Summerfield. Give me a call or text today RE/MAX Of Greensboro (336) 750-6453 or (800) 950-6453 or visit www.forsalegreensboro.com

íLos hogares multigeneracionales pueden ser la respuesta al aumento de precio


¡Los hogares multigeneracionales están regresando de gran manera! En la década de 1950, alrededor del 21 %, o 32.2 millones de los estadounidenses compartían un techo con sus hijos adultos o los padres. Según un artículo de Realtor.com “Casi 1 de 5 estadounidenses esta ahora viviendo en un hogar multigeneracional – un hogar con generaciones de dos o más adultos, o abuelos viviendo con los nietos – un nivel que no se ha visto en los Estados Unidos desde 1950”.

Otro informe que demuestra este punto es el Perfil de los compradores y vendedores de viviendas 2017 de la Asociación nacional de Realtors (NAR por sus siglas en inglés) que expresa que 13 % de los compradores de vivienda compraron una casa multigeneracional el año pasado. Las 3 razones principales para la compra de este tipo de casa fueron:

  1. Cuidar a los padres que están envejeciendo (22 % aumento del 19 % el año pasado)
  2. Reducir los gastos (17 %)
  3. Hijos mayores de 18 años regresando a la casa (16 %, aumento del 14 % el año pasado)

Valerie Sheets, portavoz de Lennar, señala que,

“Todo el mundo está buscando por la casa perfecta para cualquier número de situaciones familiares, como las familias que optan por cuidar de los padres que están envejeciendo o de los abuelos en casa, o ‘millennials’ que están buscando vivir con sus padres mientras asisten a la escuela o ahorran para el pago inicial”.

Durante mucho tiempo, el núcleo familiar, (una pareja y sus hijos dependientes), se convirtió en la norma aceptada, pero John Graham, coautor de “Together Again: A Creative Guide to Successful Multigenerational Living” (Juntos de nuevo: una guía creativa para una vida multigeneracional exitosa)dijo: “Estamos regresando a la forma que los seres humanos siempre han vivido – en familias extendidas”.

Este cambio se puede atribuir a varios cambios sociales durante las décadas. La creciente diversidad racial y étnica en la población de los Estados Unidos ayuda a explicar parte del aumento en vivir en un ambiente multigeneracional; “Datos sugieren que vivir en familias multigeneracionales es más frecuente entre los asiáticos (28 %), Hispanos (25 %), y afroamericanos (25%), mientras que los estadounidenses blancos tienen menos hogares multigeneracionales (15 %)”.

Adicionalmente, las mujeres son un poco más propensas a vivir en condiciones multigeneracionales que sus homólogos masculinos (12 % vs. 10 %, respectivamente). Por último, pero no menos importante; la economía básica.

Valerie Sheets saca a la luz el hecho que los precios de las casas se han estado elevando en los últimos años. Ella dice que “a medida que aumentan los precios de las casas, más familias tienden a optar por la convivencia”.

En conclusión,

Los hogares multigeneracionales están regresando. Si bien es un cambio del núcleo familiar común, estos hogares pueden ser la respuesta que muchas familias están buscando si los precios de las casas continúan aumentando en respuesta a la falta de inventario de vivienda.

Multigenerational Households May Be Greensboro's Answer to Price Increases


Multigenerational homes are coming back in a big way in the Piedmont Triad! In the 1950s, about 21%, or 32.2 million Americans shared a roof with their grown children or parents. According to an article by Realtor.com, “Nearly 1 in 5 Americans is now living in a multigenerational household – a household with two or more adult generations, or grandparents living with grandchildren – a level that hasn’t been seen in the U.S. since 1950.”

Another report that proves this point is the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) 2017 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers which states that 13% of home buyers purchased multigenerational homes last year. The top 3 reasons for purchasing this type of home were:

  1. To take care of aging parents (22%, up from 19% last year)
  2. Cost savings (17%)
  3. Children over the age of 18 moving back home (16%, up from 14% last year)

Valerie Sheets, Spokesperson for Lennar, points out that,

“Everyone is looking for the perfect home for any number of family situations, such as families who opt to take care of aging parents or grandparents at home, or millennials looking to live with their parents while they attend school or save for a down payment.”

For a long time, nuclear families (a couple and their dependent children) became the accepted norm, but John Graham, co-author of “Together Again: A Creative Guide to Successful Multigenerational Living,” says, “We’re getting back to the way human beings have always lived in – extended families.”

This shift can be attributed to several social changes over the decades. Growing racial and ethnic diversity in the U.S. population helps explain some of the rise in multigenerational living; “Data suggest that multigenerational living is more prevalent among Asian (28%), Hispanic (25%), and African-American (25%) families, while U.S. whites have fewer multigenerational homes (15%).”

Additionally, women are a bit more likely to live in multigenerational conditions than are their male counterparts (12% vs. 10%, respectively). Last but not least, basic economics.

Valerie Sheets brings to light the fact that home prices have been skyrocketing in recent years. She says that, “As home prices increase, more families tend to opt for living together.”

Bottom Line

Multigenerational households are making a comeback in Greensboro, High Point and Winston-Salem. While it is a shift from the more common nuclear home, these households might be the answer that many families are looking for as home prices continue to rise in response to a lack of housing inventory. Call Realtor Michael Jones with RE/MAX Of Greensboro today for all your real estate needs. Visit www.forsalegreensboro.com

North Carolina Housing Down Payment Assitance Program Changes


From a great loan officer Tonya May with Movement Mortgage:


I just wanted to take a couple of minutes to update you on a few things. 

First - for the first time since 2006, loan limits have increased for FHA, VA and FNMA.  For FHA, the loan limit has increased to $275,665 - VA loan limit (without addtl $ down) increased to $424,000 and the FNMA loan limit has increased to $424,000. 

Next, the $15K down payment assistance money is still available - well over 2000 as of last update - so this should last well into 2017.  The highlights of the program (for a quick reference) :

  • $15,000 assistance in form of a 0% interest rate 5 year subordinate lien with deferred payments.  20% of the balance forgiven each year.
  • First Time Homebuyers Only (everyone that is occupying the home has to be a FTHB) which means they havent owned property in the last 3 years... Alot of the buyers I talk to qualify and dont realize it!
  • Existing single family properties only (no new construction / all properties must be previously occupied)
  • Maximum sales price of $245,000
  • Mortgage Credit Certificates (MCCs) CANNOT be combined with the loans with the $15,000 DPA feature (this is a change from prior program)
  •  Income limit based on income of all adults 18+ years of age expected to occupy the property included in income limit (** TOTAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME **) and the limit for Guilford County is $59,000

Please do not hesitate to call me or email me with any help I can offer you or your buyers! 

Realtor Michael Jones REMAX Of Greensboro

www.forsalegreensboro.com (336) 750-6453 or (800) 950-6453

Down Payment Grants Available in NC


There are new down payment grants available in NC to help first time home buyers buy a house!  The program is not available through all lenders, and it is one that we are really excited to offer.  These $15,000 down payment grants are only available in Mecklenburg, Cabarrus, Guilford, Cumberland and Johnston County.

The program is being offered as part of the US Treasury Department effort to help counties affected by high foreclosures during the recession.  There are no monthly payments, and it can be used with most mortgage loan programs!

New Down Payment Grants Available in NC

There are already two down payment grants available through the State of NC.  One program offers a 3% grant, and one offers a 5% grant.  The new $15,000 down payment grant works much like the programs already established.  These programs can pay the closing costs, down payment, mortgage insurance – pretty much anything associated with buying a house… except repairs.

The newest $15,000 Grant program has no re-payment and no interest as long as you live in the home for 5 years.  Each year you live in the home, 20% of the $15,000 is automatically forgiven.

The $15,000 down payment grant AND the current 3% and 5% down payment grant programs are available to anyone who has not owned a primary residence in the past 3 years.  There are income caps for the programs based upon the area you are buying in, and with the new $15,000 grant, there’s a sales price limit of $245,000.

Contact me now to get your Grant: (336) 750-6453 mike@forsalegreensboro.com

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