Fairbanks, AK Real Estate News

By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Fairbanks Alaska New Construction Homes - A few questions to as your builder or representative. For some it’s the crisp white walls or new carpet while for others it’s that theirs is the first family to call a particular property “home.” I started building homes in 2003, acting more as the bank than general contractor, because buyer clients were finding it difficult to accept some of our more retro properties as the palate for which they were going pain the picture of their new lives. In the past several years the sale of new construction homes has skyrocketed. Seeing a demand for quality housing, contractors began building in earnest in mid to late 2000. As the market began what some thought was an endless real estate bull market, more and more builders began ‘getting in on the action....
Comments 2
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Surviving an Alaskan Winter Well, it looks as though Old Man Winter has finally arrived in earnest. The temperatures are expected to dip to as low as -20; factoring in the wind chill and that number drops to -35. Brrr. It happens every year and every year we’re not ready for it. As the leaves turn a golden yellow and the fireweed makes its last appearance for the season, we all know winter is just around the corner. For those of us who have called Alaska home for a while we know that winter just isn’t the same as it used to be. I can recall, not that long ago, winter temperatures hitting -40 for weeks at a time. We’ve even seen the thermometer bottom out at -65. At that temperature the ice fog is so thick you would swear you’re in smack in the middle a of Piccadilly Square whiteout. Mos...
Comments 3
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Earnest Money - What is it? Sometimes referred to as a "good faith deposit", earnest money, or consideration, is a necessary component of a valid real estate contract. In the Fairbanks area, an earnest money deposit of 2% of the purchase price is normal and customary. The funds are deposited into the selling brokers trust account and are considered partial payment for the subject property. As with most everything, the amount of earnest money is negotiable. I have written offers with as little as $10 as earnest money and have requested desposits of $25,000 or more for a custom new construction build. Although not as common, anything of value can be offered as an earnest money deposit; gold coins, jewelry, even your prized Harley Davidson. I have even written an offer where the "buyer’s g...
Comments 0
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
The single most important decision you will make concerning the sale of your home is establishing the asking price. Set the price too high and your home will languish on the market with little to no attention from buyers; price it below market value and you will leave equity on the table at closing. Some have referred to pricing homes as equal parts science and art. I tend to disagree. Unless your home is extraordinarily unique there's very little art to it whatsoever. Establishing market value is achieved by comparing homes of similar design, location, amenities, age, size and condition to the subject property. Adjustments are then made so the comparable properties more closely resemble the subject property. Once the adjustments are complete, an initial range of value will present itse...
Comments 2
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
There are a lot of interesting happenings in the Fairbanks Real Estate market this week. With few exceptions the average sales price and number of homes sold is dropping while the average days on the market is on a steady skyward hike. This week saw three properties close escrow that have been seriously languishing on the market, thus the spike in days on the market this week. Overall market inventory is still relatively high. Current housing inventory, including Delta Junction is 540, which strangely enough was our market inventory last week. The absorption rate (time it takes all active listings to sell) rose this week from 5.25 months to 5.4 months. I expect this number to decrease a little as we slide into December. There are rumblings that we'll topple the 6 month number by the en...
Comments 0
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
A new report out today by the US Council of Mayors paints a less than glowing picture of the housing market in the coming year. An estimated 1.4 millions homes, representing an equity loss of $519 billion, will go into foreclosure in 2008 pushing the total loss of equity at a staggering $1.2 trillion. Home prices are projected to decline by as much as 7% nationally while home sales are expected to decline by 10%. This would mean the average sales price in Fairbanks would be back to levels not seen since early 2006 and homes sales would decline to 2004 levels. The council did offer a few solutions to the housing crisis; * The addition of more foreclosure counseling services and promoting their services to buyers facing foreclosure * The development of an REO contact database which would...
Comments 2
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Fairbanks continues to feel the effects of the housing slowdown. 13 homes sold this week ranging in price from a $115,000 fixer-upper to a unique $395,000 hillside property that spent more than 14 months on the market. This represents a near 20% drop in the number of home sales from this time last year. Three new construction properties went off the market, including one zero-lot line in Lazelle Estates. Not to worry, if bland, homogenous, expressway adjoining townhouses are your style there are still more than two dozen available. 549 homes are currently available for sale with an average of 138 days on the market. This week the absorption rate (the time it will take to sell all the listings currently for sale) jumped to 5.25 months from 4.8 last week.
Comments 2
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Now that you have finished your needs and wants assessment and have an idea of what your future home should look like, it's time to start shopping... for your mortgage. Before you cross a single threshold it's important to investigate your mortgage options and secure your financing. The reason for this is twofold; first and foremost it's important to know what you can afford and from there determine what you want to spend. Second and equally important, without having secured your financing, you'll be at a disadvantage to those buyers that have their financing in place when you find your dream home and decide to make an offer. Although our standard purchase and sale agreements include a financing contingency, buyers who are pre-approved carry more weight with sellers when they are decid...
Comments 2
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
The time has come that you’re ready to buy a home. Perhaps you’ve been renting and are ready to start building equity instead of helping build your landlords or maybe you’re already a homeowner looking to make due to a lifestyle change. Either way, congratulations. Real estate is a fairly unique commodity in that it’s not something you purchase on a whim. Making the best decision means taking the time to do a little planning. By taking a little time of front to identify what your new home should look like you’ll take a great deal of stress out of the buying process. Your first step is to figure out what you need and want in a home. For some it’s a spacious home in the country while for others it’s a maintenance free condominium. Start by making a list of what you absolutely must have i...
Comments 0
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Locally, our standard purchase and sale agreements include a fifteen day discovery period beginning at contract acceptance during which buyers have the opportunity to have a “licensed contractor or other qualified professional inspect and investigate the subject property for possible defects…” Most buyers opt to have the home inspected by a structural engineer or professional home inspector. While this is a good start, depending on the property, it may be just that; a good start. Standard tests for general structural integrity, energy efficiency, water quality, radon gas, lead-based paint, soils testing, mechanical (HVAC), electrical, domestic plumbing, wastewater adequacy testing, environmental hazards and underground fuel storage tank integrity are all designed to give you, the buyer...
Comments 3
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Market Statistics for Fairbanks Alaska 11/16/2007 The number of homes sold in Fairbanks dropped for the second straight week to a low of sixteen. The average sales price rose almost 10% to $214,253 while the days on the market increased 37.5% to an average of 66. The number of active listings is also up to a total of 552, putting the absorption rate this week at 4.8 months. 81% of the sales occurred in Fairbanks with only 1 new construction property closing out of almost 140 on the market. Homes Sold Week Ending November 16, 2007 Average Sales Price Week Ending November 16, 2007 Average Days On Market Week Ending November 16, 2007 Fairbanks Alaska Market Statistics - Knowledge is power!
Comments 0
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Monday, November 5, 2007 Good Morning,The 3rd Quarter Market Report is finally up and ready; click the link to the right to download the report in a .pdf.  Overall the market is in good condition.  The good news is the average sales price is up 1.6% to $214,011 over last quarter.  The less than stellar news is that there are fewer homes selling; those that are selling are taking slightly longer to sell and we're seeing concessions in the form of price reductions of just over 2% of the list price. New construction has been the hardest hit segment of the market with respect to sales price; new construction in Fairbanks and North Pole dropped 7.8% and 9.2% respectively to an average of 231,000 from $252,300 last quarter.  As of this writing there are 137 new homes currently for sale; 26% h...
Comments 0
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
The city of Fairbanks is located in Interior Alaska near the confluence of the Chena and Tanana Rivers in the Tanana Valley. We are 360 miles north of Anchorage, 125 south of the Arctic Circle, 3,500 miles from Los Angeles and 4,200 miles from Washington, DC. Nicknamed "The Golden Heart City", Fairbanks is the largest city in the interior region and the second largest in Alaska. Founded in 1901 by Captain E.T. Barnette as a trading post on the Chena River, the community grew and was eventually named after Senator Charles Fairbanks. The discovery of Gold in the hills just north of Fairbanks caused a mass influx of residents, bringing the population to almost 11,000 in 1910. Ladd Field, now Fort Wainwright, was built in 1938 followed by the Alcan Highway in 1940's and Eielson Air Force Ba...
Comments 0
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Two faculty members appointed to serve in the University of Alaska Fairbanks' newest endowed chairs recently met with representatives of the donors whose gifts established their positions. The meetings allowed donors to learn more about the faculty members and the work they plan during the time they serve as the chairs. An endowed faculty chair requires a donation to the university exceeding $2 million. UAF currently has four endowed chairs. Associate professor Mary Childers Mangusso, lower photo; left, who was recently appointed to the Arthur T. Fathauer Chair in History, stands with Ted Fathauer during a reception earlier this month. Fathauer is a trustee for the University of Alaska Foundation and lead forecaster for the Fairbanks National Weather Service office. His mother, the late...
Comments 0
By Jesse & Kathy Clifton, Retired
(Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®)
Good Morning,A client emailed me this morning to say she couldn't find our quarterly market reports.  It looks like we lost some content in the redesign last month.  We are working to get this information back online for you, but in the meantime I'll post it here.  Click this link to download the report in .pdf format.  If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to let us know. As you can see the market is indeed changing and while not as drastic as some parts of the country, it is shifting.  Sellers need to be aware that we're not in the bull market we were a year to 18 months ago.  There are still buyers in the market shopping for a new home; it's just critical to be positioned to attract the most attention.  The Fairbanks and Interior Alaska Real Estate Market Report is a quart...
Comments 0
By Jo Anne Bullard
(Coldwell Banker Gold Country)
Good Morning!  I am looking out my office window to a beautiful sunny 15 degree day!  I hope that your day looks as promising as mine!  Today is the first day of the Annual "Home Show".  Many businesses will be setting up for the thousands of people who are looking to build, buy, or outfit their home in the coming months.  Spring has become the earmark that initiates building activity here in Fairbanks.  People are ready to buy and sell real estate after a long, dark winter.  The activity on the MLS has been increasing on a daily basis.  Inventory appears to be lower than last year by 45% so we are in need of listings.  However, the number of sales has increased 100%.  The average sales price in each area of our town is a mix.  Some showing an increase others a decrease.  The area with ...
Comments 3