Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Change in town grand list values over time

Many towns experienced an increase in their grand list between 2013 and 2014 but the vast majority are still below where they were in 2008, according to an analysis of recently released data from the Office of Policy and Management.

Only 15 towns, including Stamford and Bridgeport, have rebounded from the Great Recession and seen an increase in the aggregate valuation of taxable properties.

Click here for interactive map.

The most recent grand list data for municipalities is from 2014, but more recent data from a different study, which looks only at home values, shows that a downward trend in that category might be continuing statewide.

Home values in all other states increased between 1 and 10 percent from 2015 to 2016, but Connecticut’s decreased by half a percent, according to a recently released report from CoreLogic.

Connecticut was the only state in the country to show a valuation decline from 2015 to 2016.  Connecticut also was one of five states in the study furthest from peak home values – 20.1 percent below.

Article from Trend CT

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Web Traffic Patterns

We have always known that people take a few months to think about a real estate transaction, so that we need to pay more attention to visitors to our site than someone selling sneakers or office supplies, but we didn't have much empirical evidence to go by.  Now we have more.

We track all of the new and returning visitors to our site, as well as all the visitors who click on our website from a search.  Although we know that our region is education-driven, and therefore not, in many cases, the usual seasonal pattern found elsewhere, even we were surprised to learn the two-week period in which the greatest number of new visitors appeared.  Can you guess?

It was during the last two weeks in January!  That means that, despite weather and paying off tax and holiday bills, more people are starting a property search right after the first of the year than at any other time. Our greatest number of clicks from Google last year came in February and March, suggesting that the search for specific properties might be ramping up just after the new visitors started the process.  

Since all industry data suggests that most property closes in the late spring and summer, except for a surge in commercial closings at the end of the year, this would suggest that, if you are a seller who wants to have the broadest exposure for your property, you need to list it now!  Not next month, not when the days are longer or the weather improves, but now.  This is when people want to look at real estate, at least in our region, and we should be giving them what they want, when they want it.  Because that's how property gets sold!  So act quickly, for maximum results.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Central Location

We have seen a surge in the popularity of old industrial buildings this year.  Some of them are being used for residential repurposing, but many are put to use as warehouses.  Despite the complaints about our highways, Connecticut is located in a region where most places are accessible easily by truck, and rail goes through the state in more than one direction.  While we have become positioned as an unattractive place to do business, storing and shipping from here seems to be the exception.  Fewer jobs, especially fewer high-end jobs, are created with warehouses, but there is also less risk for the buyers or tenants.  In addition, some of those old industrial facilities have environmental problems, which are less of an issue when they are being used as warehouses, as opposed to living spaces.

Will our resurgence on the warehouse front lead to other development, or further investment in Connecticut?  It's too soon to tell, but it's good  news for those who have owned--and often sat on--those buildings for years now.  We're happy to advise you, if you are such an owner.

Monday, December 5, 2016

The Crystal Ball is Hard to Read

If we all knew what was going to happen in the economy before it happened, we'd all be very wealthy.  As it is, people are wondering what will happen in the Trump Era.  For real estate, it should be a good thing, since he is, after all, a real estate developer himself.  We know that he's planning to cut taxes in certain ways, and he hopes to speed up the construction of infrastructure.  Against that, there is the possibility that he will eliminate or cut down the interest deduction for mortgages, or that his social policies will affect places like New Haven, which is a sanctuary city. On the whole, however, we should see some benefits for those who own and invest in real estate.

The stock market has already weighed in.  After an initial downturn, it went zooming back up, and clearly is behaving as though Trump will be good for business.  If so, real estate should have begun rising.  We can't tell what's under contract, but the lag time for closings in the commercial sector, and the length of time that a transaction takes, means that we haven't seen anything yet.   But we probably will.

Assuming that's true, the race will go to the swift.  Those that buy near the beginning of the rise will profit the most.  So, what are you waiting for?

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Under All This Land

I taught the Ethics course required by the National Association of Realtors this week to commercial Realtors from around the state.  The Code of Ethics has been around since 1913, and we go over it in continuing education throughout our careers.  It's always a good reminder, although the application of  the Golden Rule would be enough to cover most situations.   I was reminded that the Code begins by saying "Under all is the land", and that underscores the fact that what Realtors do goes to the heart of the American dream and way of life.

Wherever you live, and wherever you work, play, pray, and shop, you are in buildings and homes that are built on the land that makes up our country.  Realtors and real estate are integral parts of putting families and businesses in homes and commercial spaces, which is an important why we do what we do.

 And it's one of the things we're grateful for this Thanksgiving, and every day--our clients and their trust in us. We are happy if we have been a part of locating your holiday table in its current location!  May your Thanksgiving be full of peace and joy, with thanks and best wishes from all of us at Pearce Real Estate.