McLeod County, MN Real Estate News

By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
The November/December issue of "The Residential Specialist" arrived in our office today.  We are proud to have one of our marketing ideas featured in the article titled "The Bright Side."  If you would like a copy of this article, just e-mail me and I'll be happy to send it to you.  
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
Isn't it just great having the speculation of a new stimulus incentive for everyone?  Now I am starting to hear buyers say, "Well I'm going to just wait to buy a home in Hutchinson, MN because there is an even better stimulus package that will be available to all home buyers coming soon."  Well, if the people who think that the $8,000 tax credit has inflated prices in some markets, imagine what a $15,000 tax credit will do!  Is it any wonder why this market has been so crazy?  Maybe it's time to just let the housing market correct itself without all of this.
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
Last year I had a past client who contacted me and said that she wanted to sell her home here in Hutchinson, MN and get into a townhome.  She had only owned the home for about 1 1/2 years and after looking at the market, I suggested to her that she wait until the real estate market had a chance to improve.  She took my advice and about a month ago we reconnected.  She put her home up for sale at an asking price $12,000 below what she had paid for it.  Within a couple of weeks she had an acceptable offer on it and was able to purchase the townhome she had found.  She needed to bring about $15,000 to closing in order to sell her current home and purchase the new one, but she was well prepared to do so.  She has thanked me many times for advising her to wait because it would have cost her ...
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
Now is the time for all real estate people to wake up and realize that nothing is going to replace the face-to-face contact that we have with customers and clients.  I keep seeing all the agents going goo-goo over the newest technology and I have to wonder, "why are these people in the real estate business?"  They are tripping over themselves to put technology in place that eliminates their having to have face-to-face contact with their buyers and sellers.  The best example of this is the "showing" technology where an agent sets up their appointments to show a home via the Internet.  Then after the showing there is a "showing response" form filled out by the showing agent.  Most listing agents simply forward these comments to their sellers via e-mail.  What happened to the good dialog t...
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
What a beautiful weekend we had and it looks like the rest of the week is going to be very mild as well.  We survived winter!  There were a few weeks that I wasn't so sure why we chose to make Hutchinson our hometown, but then I remembered.  The Hutchinson Leader's editorial last week said it all when they reminded all of us in Hutchinson, MN of all the good things that are happening in our community that will positively affect our economy here.  I hosted an open house this afternoon   at one of the homes that Hometown Realty has for sale,  and there were people coming through the home the entire time.  That is an excellent indication that the real estate market here in Hutchinson, MN is alive and well.  One of the interesting things that I have observed is that not one single potential...
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
The real estate market in Hutchinson, MN is continuing to come alive.  Right now, there are less homes for sale than there were a year ago and the pending sales have shown an increase over a year ago.  (Pending means that a purchase agreement has been written by a buyer and the seller has accepted the offer, but closing has not taken place.)  This is good news because according to John Tucillo, one of the most respected real estate economists in the U.S. and the former Chief Economist for the National Assocation of Realtors, there are three things that must happen in order for the housing industry to recover.  They are 1) a decline in the new listing acitivity, 2) a decline in the days on the market, 3) an increase in the sales price to list price ratio.  We started seeing a reduction i...
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
A few weeks ago I talked about the multiple offers that we were starting to see.  Well, that's intensifying with the "spring" market approaching.  There are alot of buyers that have been making offers on homes in the last couple of weeks and many of them on the same houses.  It's very encouraging to see that so many buyers are realizing what a prime time it is for them to be purchasing a home or investment property.  Recently I have read that the prediction by some economists is that we will have inflation beginning to creep into our housing market shortly.  Some predict that inflation will regain all the value that was lost in the housing market over the last two years, in the next five years or so.  Sellers have become much more realist about what price they can expect to get for thei...
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
Last fall I heard an economist speak to a group of real estate people and mortgage brokers.  He spoke about what we could expect in 2009 in our industries.  He told the mortgage people that there was good news and bad news for them.  The good news was that the interest rates would drop and they would be flooded with homeowners who would want to refinance.  The bad news for them was that many of those who wanted to refinance would not be able to because they were upside down on their mortgages (they owed more than the home is currently worth.)  I remember thinking, "well, I'm sure we in the real estate industry here in Hutchinson, MN will also be faced with a similar problem."  The guy was right!  Just last week I met with four homeowners who wanted to sell their homes, and I had to tell...
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
Even though the real estate market in Hutchinson, MN is still quieter than we'd like, we are starting to see multiple offers come in on quite a few properties.  That certainly is a good sign!  There are buyers out there just waiting for the right "deal" to come along and when it does, the buyers are making offers.  A person has to wonder though, are these buyers purchasing the homes that they want, or are they just buying "a good deal?"  Regardless, this activity this early in the year is a really good sign for the real estate market in Hutchinson, MN!
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
Recently I had the opportunity to spend a few days with my sisters laying on the beach and shopping.  All of us have careers that are being affected by the economy in one way or another.  We decided at the beginning of our trip that we would not read any newspapers, listen to any television, or listen to the radio during our time together.  What we observed was the the beaches were full of people, the restaurants had waiting lines, the shopping mall parking lots were full! Hmmm.  Where was all the doom and gloom that we had been hearing about before our trip?  By choosing not to participate in the "bad news" all day long, day in and day out, we found that we were able to have a delightful few days.  When we returned to our jobs, we were refreshed and didn't feel so bogged down.  I have ...
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
Every day someone asks me if anyone can get financing to buy homes any more.  I usually answer them by telling them that they need to quit listening to all the doom and gloom in the media.  Then I answer them, that yes, buyers can still get financing.  Although the number of mortgage companies that will finance 100% of value has diminished, there are still some programs in Hutchinson with 100% financing available to qualified buyers.  We are in a Rural Development Area which means that buyers who have qualifying incomes and a FICO score over 620 can still obtain mortgages up to 100%. Also we are seeing more activity in FHA loans because they only require a 3% down payment and they also require a lower minimum FICO score. Between the State of Minnesota and our local Hutchinson Housing Re...
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
Back in the fall of 1999, Hutchinson Technology had a significant layoff (about 700 employees if I remember right), and so I went back to my records to see how the housing market in Hutchinson was affected.  The first thing I found was that the vacancy rate of rentals increased significantly.  Many of the laid off employees were renters who moved to new locations for new jobs.  What we saw in the sale of homes was that the number of sales dropped 15% from 1999 to the end of 2000.  However, the average sale price from 1999 to 2000 increased about 3%.  The general economy is different now than it was in 1999.  So it might not be as easy for the HTI employees that were just laid off to find other employment as it was in 1999.  So, I believe that we will find the real estate market in Hutch...
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By Cheryl Dooley
(Hometown Realty)
 Tomorrow one of Hutchinson's major employers will be laying off a significant number of employees.  In a way, I'm sure that most will be glad when tomorrow is over.  The employees were told about a month ago that there would be a large layoff starting Jan. 12.  I haven't spoken to a single employee during this last month who wasn't sure that they would be one of them to lose their jobs.  At least when tomorrow is over, the 75-80% who aren't losing their jobs will be able to breathe a sigh of relief.  I have terrific faith in Hutchinson as a community and know that we will all pull together and see this thing through.  We will be thinking about all of the HTI employees and their families.
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