Last Post of 2011 from Yardley, Bucks County, PA
Don’t know where the year went.
For me, it was a productive and successful real estate year. For that, I am totally grateful and thankful for the buyers and sellers who trusted me to handle their real estate transactions, and I am also extremely thankful and appreciative of the colleagues, friends and clients who referred real estate business to me. I work really hard at what I do, and feel truly blessed to have so many people allow me to be a part of their lives during the real estate process, and beyond.
My personal outlook for real estate in the Yardley and Newtown area, and for all of Bucks County, is cautiously optimistic. I have written previously about the fact that we have a lot less distressed property sales in Yardley and Newtown, and in most of Bucks County, than in many other parts of the country. There is clear evidence right now that prices for non-distressed homes are holding very steady.
While I don’t envision a sudden shift in the market, I do think that we will see, in 2012, in Bucks County, a market that becomes more balanced than it has been. I think that sellers who are realistic about pricing will not have difficulty selling in 2012. I think that there will continue to be excellent value in the market for buyers of homes in Yardley and Newtown in 2012, but I also think that buyers need to be realistic about our market, as well. What I mean by that is that I know that there are buyers who feel as though they can make virtually any offer they want, and often expect that sellers will take anything. Remember, the average discount from original asking price in Bucks County is about 8%.
More sellers are becoming more realistic about the market, and I think that will continue in 2012. If sellers price homes realistically, given the current market conditions, then it will take a much shorter period of time to sell, and it will reduce opportunities for low ball offers, as well.
I have been able to enjoy a bit of down time over the holidays, which I always appreciate. I have gotten in some basketball, which I do all year long. We have seen a number of movies, including, “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,” “We Bought a Zoo,” and “Young Adult.” I loved “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,” although I thought the books were better because they went deeper than is possible with a movie. We also totally loved, “We Bought a Zoo.”
Also had a chance to get into New York to see a show and have dinner. We saw Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, which was wonderful. Amazing costumes, great acting and music. I love being so close to both Philadelphia and New York. It is one of the great aspects of living in Yardley.
Finally, I wanted to wish you all a very happy, healthy and prosperous new year! Enjoy New Year’s Eve celebrations, but stay safe, and I will see you in 2012!Continue Reading > Add a Comment
Yardley and Bucks County Real Estate Market Update
From a Yardley real estate perspective, we are now 11 months into data for 2011. Let’s see where we are, both with Yardley real estate and Bucks County real estate.
Bucks County real estate
Units Sold: Looking at numbers for all of Bucks County, the number of units sold this year is about 4% lower than a year ago at this time. For those who suggest that no real estate sells in Bucks County, although the number of houses sold is a bit lower, there have been 4,052 homes that have closed through November this year!
Pricing: The average price of a home for sale in Bucks County is down by 5.5% from last year at the same time.
Pending Sales: This is the best forward indicator of real estate activity, and the number of pending sales has trended up for several months.
Inventory: This is also an extremely important metric, when considering Bucks County real estate market conditions. The number of houses for sale in Bucks County is 7% less this month than last month, and more than 11% lower than it was at the same time last year! This still represents more than 11 months of inventory in Bucks County. We consider a market to be balanced when there is about a six month inventory, so you can see that factors are still favoring buyers. It is important to note, that the average days on market has also increased this year, from 88 to 101.
Observations for Bucks County real estate market
My observation from all of these statistics is that the market, while still favoring buyers, has stabilized a bit in Bucks County. I posted an article the other day comparing distressed and non-distressed real estate sales. In the article, I pointed out that both locally and nationally, prices of non-distressed properties appear to have stabilized. In looking at Bucks County real estate, it is important to note that we have far fewer distressed property sales than in many other parts of the country. Houses can and will sell, if they are priced correctly, marketed properly, and if appropriate steps are taken to ensure that they show as well as possible.
Yardley Real Estate Information
As I have pointed out many times in the past, real estate markets are very local, often varying from neighborhood to neighborhood. Let’s look at what is happening in the Yardley and Lower Makefield Township real estate market.
- Inventory of homes Nov 2011 204
- Inventory of homes Oct 2011 226
- Inventory of homes Nov 2010 194
Although inventory is a bit less this month, compared with last month, it is higher by almost 10% from the same time last year. This is a bit of a contrast to the County as a whole.
- Average price of a home for sale Nov 2011 489,000
- Average price of a home for sale Nov 2010 499,000
Asking price of a house for sale in Yardley/Lower Makefield Township is about 2% lower this year.
- 261 homes sold through November this year
- 291 homes sold at the same time last year
It is also interesting to note that homes selling this year sold at an average of 92% of the list price, while they sold at an average of 93% of list price last year. Please note that when comparing the sold price to list price, we use the original asking price, where the price is reduced.
There is currently about a nine month inventory of homes for sale in Yardley. This is actually a bit better than for all of Bucks County.
There is no question that, looking at all of this information, it is still a buyers market. However, whether you are a buyer, seller, or just curious about real estate in Bucks County, or Yardley, houses are selling. Interest rates are at historic lows. Despite public perception, buyers are getting mortgages, and real estate is selling. If you are a potential seller, it is critical that you be realistic about pricing. It has never been more important to make sure that your house shows as well as it possibly can, and that it is marketed properly and thoroughly. I have a real sense that, especially for non-distressed homes, the market is a bit more stable right now, than it has been in quite a while.Continue Reading > Add a Comment
Bucks County real estate market update
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Holiday Cleaning – Some Tips for a Guest-Ready Yardley Home
If you think wiping down counters and fluffing a few pillows in advance of the guest onslaught will land you on Santa’s “nice” list this holiday season, maybe you should check that to-do list twice. You can bring your home to sparkling guest-readiness without going overboard. Here are a few tips from the New York Times and HouseLogic that will keep your home merry, bright, and clean.
Scrub your entryway. Wipe down your front door, give the doormat a good shake, and make sure dust and dirt haven’t collected on floors and furniture legs. These are the first things guests will see when they arrive, so keeping them clean will guarantee a good first impression.
Focus on the kitchen. People tend to gather around the food during the holidays, so make sure your kitchen looks and smells nice. Don’t forget to dust the light fixtures and flush sink drains with boiling water.
Whatever you do, don’t neglect the loo. Don’t just wipe surfaces; break out the stiff-bristled brush and scouring powder to really scrub things clean.
Sniff out bad smells. If you clean your home and something still doesn’t smell quite right, brew some coffee. The aroma will cover it up.
Give your garbage disposal some love, considering how much it will “consume” this season. To cut down on odors, chop up a whole lemon — rind and all — and let the disposal gobble it up. Throw in ice cubes to sharpen the blades.
Make sure you can see the guests coming. Keep windows clean and streak-free on the cheap with an easy mixture of vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Wipe down windows with a reusable microfiber cloth.
With all your holiday cooking, stove tops and ovens are bound to get dirty. Baking soda and water make a simple scouring solution that can scrub off that baked-on gunk.
What are your tips for keeping your Yardley home guest-ready during the holiday season? Leave your comments below!Continue Reading > Add a Comment
Bucks County Home Prices Stabilizing (or not?)
There was a really interesting article in the Wall Street Journal a couple of days ago, questioning whether home values are still falling. If you are curious about what is happening in the real estate market, check out this article at the following link, “Why Home Prices Are (and Aren’t) Stabilizing”
From a Bucks County perspective, why is this article so interesting?
There are always articles written that talk about how bad the real estate market is. I have written pretty extensively about the real estate market in and around Yardley and Newtown, and all over Bucks County. I have pointed out on numerous occasions, that our market is nowhere near as dire, as in other parts of the country, like Arizona, Florida, etc.
This Journal article is the first article that I have seen that makes a distinction between distressed sales, and non-distressed sales. I think this could be a critically important distinction, because, as the article points out, according to CoreLogic, an important emerging trend is that home prices are actually stabilizing after excluding distressed sales. If you are not familiar with the term, “distressed sale”, it essentially refers to bank owned properties, and/or short sales, etc.
It is clear, according to the statistics, that prices of non-distressed properties are actually stabilizing, even as the prices of distressed properties are still falling.
The reason this becomes so important to the real estate market in Bucks County, is because for Bucks County real estate, the percentage of distressed property sales, is very significantly lower than the national average. In fact, for all of Bucks County, the percentage of distressed property sales is about 13% or so, while the national percentage is 28 to 30%. I would actually suggest that in the Yardley, Newtown, Washington Crossing real estate market, that percentage is even lower.
In fact, many people are really surprised to learn that for the entire real estate market in Bucks County, following the height of the market, which was in 2007, prices fell by 6.7% in 2008, they dropped by 6.8% in 2009 and believe it or not, they actually went up by 4.3% in 2010. Those statistics are based on the change in the average sold price, each year.
So, if you live in or are interested in real estate in Bucks County, spread the word!Continue Reading > Add a Comment
Santa comes to town in Yardley, Bucks County
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1qv1CquAGM&feature=channel_video_title[/youtube]Continue Reading > Add a Comment
Yardley Boro historic library building on the pond.
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Rqf9JUwWE4[/youtube]Continue Reading > Add a Comment
Yardley, Pennsylvania Holiday Fun Time!
This Saturday, December 3rd, promises to be an interesting and exciting day in Yardley, Pa.
First, you will have a great opportunity to enjoy a “Lake Afton Holiday” at the Old Library building (see photo), situated on beautiful Lake Afton in the center of Yardley Boro. Run by the Yardley Historical Association, the Library will be open from 2:00 to 6:00 and, for holiday shoppers, there will be an opportunity to purchase a variety of Yardley themed gifts.
For more information about this, please contact the Yardley Historical Society at 215-493-6253 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the following link, which will direct you to the Historical Association website.
Hang around town on Saturday, until 3:30 and enjoy the annual Yardley Olde Fashioned Christmas Parade. The parade will get under way at 3:30, from the American Legion building, which is on the South end of the Boro, and will proceed North on Main Street. Yardley Boro will be filled with sights and sounds of the holiday season, for sure.
Hope to see a lot of you out for both of these wonderful, holiday events. The weather is supposed to be crisp and clear, so it will be a really fun afternoon.Continue Reading > Add a Comment
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