Keep safety in mind this holiday

The Halloween season is upon us. Ensure your home and property are safe by following these tips1:

  • Light the way. Although it’s tough to resist a dark‚ spooky exterior look for your home‚ the more outside lighting‚ the better. Also‚ clear walkways and yards of tripping hazards.
  • Secure pets. Not all children are fond of pets – so keep animals a safe distance from doors.
  • Consider candle substitutes. Candles inside homemade jack-o’-lanterns pose a fire hazard. Battery-powered LED lights provide the same glow without the worries.

Have a safe and happy Halloween!

1Hillary Johnston‚ “How to keep kids safe on Halloween‚” SafeWise‚ last updated September 16‚ 2019.


The next moves for unsuccessful buyers

Failed home searches are not uncommon. In fact‚ 55% of buyers in the second quarter of this year said their house hunts lasted three months or longer.1 So‚ what was the next move for these buyers?

  • Of those surveyed‚ 62% stayed the course and continued to search for a home in their preferred location.
  • Thirty-six percent expanded their search area; 21% settled for an older or smaller home.
  • Sixteen percent postponed their search until next year or later.

As the #1 mortgage company in Greater Lexington for 17 consecutive years‚ Capstone Mortgage is here to provide guidance and support.

1Rose Quint‚ “Unaffordable prices hold back prospective homebuyers‚” Eye on Housing Blog‚ last updated September 5‚ 2019.


Waiting until spring may be costly

Do you have customers who were unlucky in their summer home searches? Well, remind them that fall can bring plenty of buying opportunities. Share this helpful information with autumn buyers1:

  • Rates are at or near three-year lows and are expected to stay that way throughout the season.2 This means homes that were once out of reach may now be attainable.
  • Historically‚ many deals are done before the start of school‚ eliminating much buying competition. Also, worried sellers tend to reduce prices after an unsuccessful summer on the market.
  • Waiting may be costly. The National Association of REALTORS® predicts that prices will rise 3% in 2020.

Let’s have your customers settled into their new homes by the start of the New Year. Please contact me when you have a moment.

1Erik J. Martin‚ “Experts: Don’t wait until spring 2020 to buy a home. Buy in fall 2019‚” The Mortgage Reports‚ last updated September 16‚ 2019.
2Erik J. Martin‚ “Mortgage rate predictions for late-2019‚” The Mortgage Reports‚ last updated August 14‚ 2019.


Less new homes featuring fireplaces

With fall here and the cooler air coming‚ it’s time for many New Englanders to cozy up to their home fireplaces. Or is it? Take a look at this National Association of Home Builders survey1:

  • Of the single-family homes built in New England in 2018‚ less than half (48%) had fireplaces.
  • Nationwide‚ there’s also been a steady decline in fireplaces: just 41% of new construction had this feature. The Middle Atlantic (57%) built the most‚ followed by West North Central (56%).
  • Homes costing $500‚000–$999,000 had more fireplaces (65%) than $1 million-plus properties (60%).

I hope you find this information to be helpful. Here’s to a great week.

1Paul Emrath‚ “Share of new homes with fireplaces drops to record low‚” Eye on Housing Blog‚ last updated September 16‚ 2019.


Bidding wars on the decline

The Boston metro area may be one of the country’s most competitive markets‚ but compared to one year ago‚ late summer was significantly more buyer friendly. Here are the numbers from a recent Redfin analysis1:

  • Fifteen percent of Boston-area offers submitted by Redfin agents faced competition in August. However‚ in August 2018‚ a whopping 60.1% of offers were up against rival bids.
  • Competitive offers were down 3.7% from one month earlier.
  • Boston ranked fourth in the country for percentage of competitive offers‚ behind San Francisco (31%)‚ San Diego (18.4%)‚ and Las Vegas (17.1%).

Capstone Mortgage is here to help with your customers’ home financing needs. Please contact me if you have questions.

1Dana Olsen‚ “Ten percent of Redfin offers faced bidding wars in August‚ a new eight-year low‚” Redfin‚ last updated September 4‚ 2019.