Roanoke, VA Real Estate News

By Walter Grewe III, Realtor, SFR, A-REO, Roanoke Homes and Real Estate
(Long and Foster Realtors)
This is the final installment in the series. In the first two I discussed the different questions regarding marketing, advertising, and market area presence.  In this final installment I will go over if the Realtor already has buyers looking for a home like yours, references from past clients and being displeased with the efforts of your Realtor. The sixth question you should ask: How many buyers are you currently working with? Obviously the more buyers your agent is working with the better the chances are of getting your home sold quickly. Ask them to describe the system they have for attracting buyers. Often Realtors will run ads in real estate magazines or the newspaper specifically designed to attract people who are in the market to buy houses. Is your agent doing this? The seventh ...
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By Barbara Delaney
(Park Place REALTORS, Inc.)
REALTORS want to know, too!  On Valentine's Day, the bill is passed! On Presidents' Day, it will become law! We need an inside scoop on the implications of this!  The information will probably be mangled by the press! Consumers will be confused!  We will be confused!!! My fear is that info will come out that doesn't give enough caveats! Sure, they will say to consult your accountant. Many buyers don't have accountants. We need a small word explanation. That is so that I can understand it!  I can't explain, unless I have a basic understanding! I know that the collective brain of ActiveRain can help us all! Thanks, Barbara
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By Barbara Delaney
(Park Place REALTORS, Inc.)
    In 1949, a group of merchants in Roanoke, Virginia decided that it would be a great idea to build a star on top of Mill Mountain. Mill Mountain is within the City limits of Roanoke. This was a promotional idea to kick off the Christmas shopping season. The Chamber of  Commerce and the Roanoke Merchants Association were major players. Later the groups decided to keep the star illuminated all year long. Hence, the nickname for Roanoke, the  "Star City of the South'.   El Paso, Texas also has a star on a mountain. It is different. I would never argue with a Texan about which is bigger, or why!!   Our star is 88.5 feet tall and has 2,000 feet of neon tubing. Initially the star was pure white. At times, the star was turned red when someone was killed in a traffic accident. That was, depr...
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By Wanda Richards, Shows Great Home Staging
(Shows Great Home Staging and Web Solutions )
REALTORS in Roanoke, Lynchburg, Smith Mountain Lake, Rockbridge County, and the New River Valley are being invited to preview or show the 6 homes on week one of the tour and enter to win a 5 Day / 4 Night Carnival Cruise for 2 and $100 Cash to be given away on Monday, February 16th.  Agents must see all 6 homes to qualify for the drawing.  You can read more about these homes and view virtual tours at http://www.showsgreat.biz/week1.htm See 6 great homes (5 were staged by Shows Great) and enter to win 2 great prizes! Wanda Richards is an award winning REALTOR with over 28 years experience in selling homes in the Roanoke Valley of Virginia.  She specialized in representing sellers and is known for her innovative marketing skills. In 2003 she started Create4u Web Design to develop web site...
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By Walter Grewe III, Realtor, SFR, A-REO, Roanoke Homes and Real Estate
(Long and Foster Realtors)
This is the second of three blogs regarding things you should discuss with a potential Realtor, before listing your home with them. In the first installment I related information you need to know regarding the marketing plan, company reputation and volume of sales. In this installment we will talk about days on market and listing price to selling price ratio. The fourth question you should ask: On average, how long does it take your listings to sell? This information is easily available to any Realtor through their local Real Estate Board. Does this agent tend to sell faster or slower than the board average? Their performance on this measurement will help you predict how long your home will be on the market before it sells. This is also more often than not an indication of the Realtor "...
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By Barbara Delaney
(Park Place REALTORS, Inc.)
    Thinking about buying a home? Now is the time! This is a report from Roanoke, Virginia. "Virginia is for Lovers", you know! Rates are great! Prices are low! If you have decent credit, money is out there! There are even some nothing down programs in certain areas and for Veterans. There is a potential tax credit of up to $7,500 for first time buyers, or folks who haven't owned a home in the last 3 years. Right now it is set up as an interest free loan. You would get the money back next year. The House has passed a Bill that would make it a true tax credit--you might get back an extra $7,500 next year to do home improvements! This Bill still has to pass the Senate and be approved by the President. Hopefully, this will happen soon! Houses that are priced right are beginning to sell. I ...
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By Walter Grewe III, Realtor, SFR, A-REO, Roanoke Homes and Real Estate
(Long and Foster Realtors)
It is critical that you make the right decision about who will handle what is probably the single largest financial investment you will ever make. Picking the right agent is one of those critical decisions that can cost or save you thousands of dollars. There are very specific questions you should be asking to ensure that you get the best representation for your needs. Some agents actually prefer that you dont ask them these questions, because the information that gain for their answers will give you a very good idea of their commitment to you and your goals. The first question you should ask is; What makes you different? Why should I list my home with you? It's a much tougher real estate market than it was a few years ago. What unique marketing plans and programs does this agent have i...
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By Walter Grewe III, Realtor, SFR, A-REO, Roanoke Homes and Real Estate
(Long and Foster Realtors)
In the last week our local newspaper has run two articles about the state of Real Estate in the Roanoke Valley. The first related how some businesses are flourishing due to the downturn in the market, the second detailed the jump in foreclosures in the Roanoke Valley. It is unfortunate that the area is experiencing such problems and that families are losing their homes due to plant closures, lay offs and the inability to refinance homes with adjustable rate mortgages, that now adjusted they can no longer afford the payments. The flip side of this coin is that there are many excellent opportunities to purchase distressed properties below market value. The market is flush with Bank owned properties, Housing and Urban Development (HUD)owned homes and Short Sale homes. People who are intere...
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By Walter Grewe III, Realtor, SFR, A-REO, Roanoke Homes and Real Estate
(Long and Foster Realtors)
In the past I have had more than a few clients question and even decline owners title insurance. Typically the response when asked if they would like to purchase title insurance is " Doesn't my mortgage company carry that?". Well the answer to that is yes and it is to cover themselves, not you. I recently talked with one of my colleagues who provides title insurance to get an idea of just what could come back and bite you if you do not have title insurance. The answer encompassed a lot more than I expected. Many of the things I was already aware of such as, someone else owning an interest in the title, defective execution or recordation, undisclosed liens, and claimed rights because of fraud, forgery, duress, incompetency and impersonation. There were also quite a few that caught me off...
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By Walter Grewe III, Realtor, SFR, A-REO, Roanoke Homes and Real Estate
(Long and Foster Realtors)
  The previous year was quite a challenge for everyone involved in Real Estate. From the people trying to buy or sell a home, to the the professionals providing mortgages, insurance, appraisals, home inspections and Realtors themselves. I have recently received the year end report for the neighborhood I live in and actively market to. Overall things seemed to move along as usual. The average percentage of sales price to list price was 95% and days on market were a lot lower than I expected. The overall days on market for our local area overall were almost double . If you are interested in a more detailed analysis of your home please feel free to contact me.  
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By Wanda Richards, Shows Great Home Staging
(Shows Great Home Staging and Web Solutions )
This home has just hit the market and it has been renovated and staged to sell.  Gleaming hardwood floors.  Updated kitchen with new appliances, cabinets, and counter tops.  Gathering room adjoins kitchen and offers a cozy fireplace and large picture window overlooking the patio area.  3 bedrooms and 2 full baths.  You can view the real estate show at: http://www.realestateshows.com/show.php?mls=basic&id=365935For more details about this wonderful home...please contact Barry Compton of Campbell Realty     BARRY C COMPTON CAMPBELL REALTY INC. 3735 PLANTATION ROAD NEROANOKE, VA 24012Other - (540) 562-1225Mobile - (540) 293-5294askbarrycompton@cox.net Staging and Furniture rental provided by:  Shows Great Home Staging and Web Solution
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By Walter Grewe III, Realtor, SFR, A-REO, Roanoke Homes and Real Estate
(Long and Foster Realtors)
A friend of mine recently told me " Insurance is a ripoff, until you need it." It got me thinking about home warranties and what if anything home owners and home buyers know or think about them. I have recently listed a home and my client wanted it listed "as-is" because she is a single Mom and did not want to have to deal with any  Home Inspection repairs. The home itself is in good shape with no issues that I or she is aware of. I talked to her about offering a 1 year Home Warranty for the Buyers to counteract the possible stigma of an "as-is" listing. According to the AHS website " A home warranty is a service contract that covers the repair or replacement of many of the most frequently occuring breakdowns of home system components and appliances." I was offered the opportunity to p...
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By Walter Grewe III, Realtor, SFR, A-REO, Roanoke Homes and Real Estate
(Long and Foster Realtors)
Ever since I first got into Real Estate in 2006 I have called expired listings in an attempt get business. My first broker suggested it and I have had some success with this practice. Recently I have been following up with a potential client who lives in my subdivision. I had originally called and spoke with the lady of the house and she told me they wanted to keep the home off the market until after the holidays, but to contact her right after Christmas and we could get together to discuss listing the home. I called a few days after Christmas and she told me that she had talked to another Realtor who offered to sell her home for half the typical listing percentage if she sold the home herself. I was a little confused by this, because selling your own listings of course does happen,but ...
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By Wanda Richards, Shows Great Home Staging
(Shows Great Home Staging and Web Solutions )
Homes Staged by Shows Great Home Staging sold Faster than unstaged homes in our market area!Of the homes listed for sale in the Roanoke Valley in 2008-29 % of them were sold and closed in 200826 % of them expired and did not sell37% of them are still on the marketAverage Days on Market of Solds - 54  68% of the homes Staged by Shows Great Home Staging Sold in 2008 - these homes SOLD within 35 days of staging!Wanda RichardsShows Great Home Staging and Web Solutionswww.showsgreat.biz540.343.0051Wanda Richards is an award winning REALTOR with over 28 years experience in selling homes in the Roanoke Valley of Virginia.  She specialized in representing sellers and is known for her innovative marketing skills. In 2003 she started Create4u Web Design to develop web sites for small businesses a...
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By Wanda Richards, Shows Great Home Staging
(Shows Great Home Staging and Web Solutions )
Then make staging a part of your business plan for 2009!It is that time of year again...time to plan where you will spend your advertising and marketing dollars in 2009. Why not make staging a part of your marketing plan in 2009?  Below are ten reasons to make staging part of your marketing plan for 2009:1.  Staged homes sell faster than non-staged homes.  According to Barb Swartz of StagedHomes.com, non staged homes languish on the market an average of 175 days while staged homes sell in an average of 35 days!     2.  Staged homes sell for more money than non staged homes.  A 2004-2005 survey of owners by training company StagedHomes.com found that staged homes sold for 6.9 percent more than homes that weren't staged.  3.  Home Staging costs less than the first price reduction.  In to...
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By Robert Lusk
(Alcova Mortgage)
Very often I find that people are not focusing on the resources that they have.  Or an even bigger problem is that they don't move in the direction they want to go.  One analogy is that of a car wreck.  Most people who see that they are about to get hit by a car, lock up.  They slam on the brakes, wait for the impact and then assess the damage.  It is the very few that will look in the direction that they want to go and accelerate.  This is a common mistake for most. Where does this apply regarding your mortgage, real estate, or your long term financial plan?  For most right now, we are in the middle of a car wreck.  You could owe more on your home than it is worth.  You could be in the middle of a career change.  Or you could be doing fine, though doing nothing.  In any of these cases,...
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As Christmas rapidly approaches (every year), I often take time to reflect upon the previous 12 months.  All I can say is: Wow!  2008 was definitely one to remember.  I was on the front lines of the largest financial crisis since the Great Depression.  I had a partnership develop and fail within the year.  I saw the demise of my company, Elan Financial Group, as a residential mortgage practice.  So I switched to 1st Metropolitan Mortgage.  I moved my family to Charlotte and then back to Roanoke.  I saw many people fail this year.  I'm fortunate to not be one of them.  I was also able to witness my kids grow a little closer to the people they will become.  Man, they are smart and beautiful and most importantly, funny.  I was able to watch my wife as she grew closer to achieving her dream...
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Just about everyone with a television, access to the internet, or a newspaper probably knows, the economy is floundering.  While this is based on multiple factors such as sub-prime mortgages, bad investment advice, the housing market, etc. (this list is long and distinguished,) there may be light at the end of the tunnel.  At the minimum, there may be a method to the madness regarding the injection of money into the economy by the Federal Government. The "bailout," formally known as the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) has many confounded and wondering if dumping money into financial institutions is all for not at the tax payers expense.  While many are angry over this, I am starting to piece together what I hope is happening with this program and the other funds being funneled into...
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By Josh Perrington
(Arkshire Financial)
Fall, is an understatement...plummet might be more appropriate. This week has definitely been one for the books... If you haven't heard, mortgage rates have taken a serious dive & are now hovering around 4.75% for a 30 yr fixed...how insane is that!?!?  They were just @ 6% a few weeks ago.  And why isn't this plastered all over the news?  See my post, for a glimpse of things to come: "600 Billion Reasons We're Headed for Great Things!" Just this morning we helped one of our Roanoke, VA clients consolidate a few credit cards, personal debts, and her mortgage for a monthly savings of $836! The exciting part isn't the fact they're saving money (maybe it is)...it's the financial plan we've help create to get them through retirement & their children to college. Call or email & let's grab cof...
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By Wanda Richards, Shows Great Home Staging
(Shows Great Home Staging and Web Solutions )
'Twas a few weeks before Christmas, when all through the open houseNot a buyer was stirring, not even a mouse;The for sale sign had been hung in the front yard with care,In hopes that a buyer soon would be there;The owners were headed to their new destination,With hopes that an offer would come to fruition.When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,I sprang to my window to see what was the matter.When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,But the Realtor and Stager and all of their staging gear,With a little old driver, so lively and strong,I knew in a moment this would not take long.From the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!Now put it away! Put it away! Put it away all!A wink of the eye and a twist of the head,Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;They spoke not a...
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