In the first three months of 2016 32 homes sold on Lake Sinclair in the Milledgeville/Lake Sinclair MLS and I'm happy to report a serious upswing for the first three months of 2017.
As you can see March outpaced the past 5 years in sales. In fact in the first quarter data for the past 5 years only one month had a better same period number and that was February 2013 had 15 sales over February 2017 having 14 sales. But it's a delightful start to sales on Lake Sinclair putting us currently with just over 7 months of inventory. That's the lowest amount of inventory we've had in the 9 years I've been keeping this data.
Price however is not yet off the roller coaster. We've had ups and downs. However the first three months of 2017 were higher than the first three months of 2016 but not by a significant margin. The most recent month data shows an average sales price of $222,438. for waterfront homes on Lake Sinclair. But the good news for sellers is that inventory falling will likely result in prices starting to move upward as opposed to the bumpy ride we've had since December 2012 which was the lowest average sales price in the past 9 years.
Also good news for sellers is a decline of DOM in March. The average days on the market dropped to 124 from 186 back in February. Just maybe with some of the quick pendings I'm seeing in the market right now this will continue to drop which will make sellers happy. Buyers however, this means you can't wait to come see that new house that hits the market or go home and talk about it if you think you found "the one". You're going to have to be ready to move fast if the house that fits your needs comes on the market.
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Tammy Lankford, Broker/Owner
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For the most part when I have buyers send over a request for repairs after an inspection some type of negotiation takes place. Sometimes repairs are completed by the seller, sometimes the seller agrees to pay X amount of buyer closing costs so buyer can use money he'd planned on paying closing costs with to make repairs after closing and sometimes the price of the home is reduced to a new amount.
But for that once in a while... when the repairs become the deal breaker... what happens to the earnest money.
Well in Georgia we have a due diligence period in our contract.
That period is a negotiated number of days. As a rule I suggest buyers ask for at least two weeks. Sometimes in my market it can be a week before you can get inspections done and the inspector might suggest a second look by certain professionals depending on what they find. Sometimes you'll need a roofer, an electrician, a plumber or even a HVAC company to address something that might need a more in depth look.
If within this due diligence period a resolution can not be reached by the buyer and the seller...
Then if you read 8 d. (2) you will find the buyer gets to determine in this time period if they will exercise their "OPTION" to proceed or not with the purchase of the property. A buyer may unilaterally terminate the contract during this time period. If a buyer does that they are entitled to a full return of their earnest money deposit and the seller can't prevent that.
So if a seller refuses to make repairs that a buyer wants made if that happens in the due diligence period you'll be getting your earnest money refunded. If that period is over there are still certainly times it can be returned, but not always. If you also have a loan contingency and the loan will not be issued without the repairs you may also terminate and get your earnest money returned with a letter of denial from the lender.
If the period has passed for all contingencies in the contract it is time for you to consult legal advice from a real estate attorney. A buyer who doesn't close and has no legal contractual out may be subject to being sued by a seller for specific performance. But at that point the decision to buy or not buy for a purchaser must be carefully weighed with risk if the seller won't agree to terminate. That risk should always be discussed with legal counsel and this blog is not meant to serve as legal advice, only as a suggestion that at that point you should certainly get some legal advice.
The Deep Roots Festival, fka The Sweetwater festival (yeah some stupid beer company sued them to stop using that name even though "Oconee" means sweet water), will be this Saturday, October 22 2016
The Deep Roots Festival is a cultural arts and music Festival that is located in historic downtown Milledgeville and composed of regional and national talents, artists and vendors. It beckons travelers from all over with an antique car show, live entertainment ranging from blue grass to rock and roll, artist market, and a KidZone.
The Festival will also hold a GBA sanctioned BBQ cook-off contest featuring the ever popular people's choice award that will draw BBQ connoisseurs from around the southeast. Starts at 10:30 sharp, first come, first serve.
The Festival has been named one the Southeast Tourism Society's Top 20 Events, winner of events in October.
The event takes place from 10 a.m. until Midnight. Ticket prices are $6 until Tuesday and $8 at the gate. $6 at the gate if you have 4 or more. You don't want to miss this fabulous event. It grows and gets better every year. The current forecast for this Saturday is Sunny with a high of 72 which is the perfect weather for an outdoor festival.
Last year when my daughter was house hunting she wanted both a newer home and convenient location. She ended up in Plantation Chase, a neighborhood she loves. It was developed around 2005 and so homes there are just over 10 years old or newer. The HOA fees are very low, less than $200 annually. There is never much on the market in that neighborhood and the days on the market are usually pretty short as well. There is currently one lot on the market, two active listings and two pending listings.
It's conveniently located literally within walking distance of Kroger, very convenient to get onto 441 at a light, right down the road from Milledgeville airport and a fire department is located between the airport and subdivision. It's less than 5 miles to the Walmart shopping center, the mall and various places to eat in Milledgeville and just a short ten minute drive to both Georgia Military College and Georgia College and State University.
The average sales price is easy for the last 24 months with only two sales is $212,000. The average days on market was 43.
Plantation Chase homes are on city water, but each home is on a septic tank. It's also located just outside of the incorporated area so only county tax, not city tax. However you do have mandatory garbage pickup also paid to the city. Lot sizes range from a half acre to just over an acre. There are still 70 acres within the subdivision that have not been developed. The proposed lot division and proposed roads are approved and recorded and hopefully that will be developed in the near future. Some grading work has recently been done on the proposed road site.
I am in and out of this subdivision regularly so I'll keep my eyes on the development. But if you are interested in those two available homes in the very convenient location in Baldwin County give me a call and I'll get you an appointment to see them. If you are ready to sell your home here, give me call too and I'd be happy to discuss my marketing plan with you. 706-485-9668
In our local real estate market it is not uncommon to see homes being advertised with furniture included. Many times these homes are a vacation home for the sellers and they have no place to put all that furniture if the buyers don't want it.
So this is a very common question that people listing homes ask. There is a lot to consider when selling a home furnished and different people have very different opinions about what what "furnished" means. I've had the following things occur that I'd like to tell you about.
I've had buyers call after the fact and ask "where is the television?" Well the television isn't "furniture", it's a personal item.
I've had buyers expect boats and personal water crafts when a description said the home was furnished. Nope those items are not furniture either.
I've had sellers who didn't even want to clean out the closets and take their clothing.
I've had sellers who didn't want to take their used linens and coffee pots and dishes either.
There is also of course the matter that banks do NOT want furniture included on a sales agreement because they aren't in the business of financing dining room tables.
So my advice to sellers is "some furnishings negotiable" in the description. We also include a notation in the private agent to agent remarks that any request for furnishings be made on a separate bill of sale (which is included in our state forms) for the amount of $10 or other sum they want to offer. Our bill of sale in always contingent upon the real estate deal closing. So if they buyer doesn't close on the real property they can't still have your boat and lawn mower for $10.
My advice to both buyers and sellers is to be VERY specific when you are negotiating for items other than the real property on the bill of sale. Don't say "living room furniture" and expect the lamps and television to be left. If you are asking for the lamp and television it needs to be spelled out.
Then of course is the "but I don't want to have to move my furniture" sellers we encounter on listings where the buyer says "and I don't want their furniture". So we've compiled a list of local charity organizations that you can have pick up or make arrangements for delivery to and get a tax donation form that you will be able to use if you itemize.
I'm behind on my market reports. Having my daughter's wedding in May and then getting the flu... well I'm not here to make excuses just to catch you up on the data.
April closings slowed down a bit on Lake Sinclair homes from March, but still out performed every April for the past 5 years. 22 homes closed on Lake Sinclair in April and an active inventory of 208 homes making it just over 9 months of inventory. Buyers are no longer going to get seller to negotiate as much. Let's take a look at price.
We saw a fairly good price jump for the 4th month of 2017 to an average of $288,000. The median price also rose to $225,000. The highest selling price was $800,000 and the lowest selling price was $115,000. The average sold to list price was 93%. Buyers have been getting better deals, but as inventory tightens this will no longer be a buyer's market and sellers won't be as likely to negotiate because we're starting to see multiple offers. One of my new listings in April that is now pending had 6 offers very quickly. Are we reaching the pre-downturn average prices? No and it's my opinion that many people who purchased in 2006 through 2012 are still upside down and will either have to take a loss or hold on to their home until prices recover with some additional low inventory and time.
The average days on the market are slightly down to 122. Again this is moving us to a more stable market. One listing that sold in April had been on the market for 663 days. However there was also one that had a 1 day on the market. In the market today over priced homes will still linger, but priced right homes will move within in the 90 day range in my opinion.
Looking for property... check out our site Lake-Sinclair.com or give us a call at 706-485-9668
It's not a big house, but it is filled with Charm and has a wonderful view. It also has a stand up partial basement for great storage or a workshop. If you are looking for a first home, or a very affordable get-a-way for the weekends Sunset Cottage is your bargain Lake House.
It has 2 Bedrooms and 2 full baths plus a sun porch that could make a great office, but you might have a bit of difficulty concentrating on work with a lake view. You can see all the photos and check out more listings on Lake Sinclair on our site.
Two and half years ago Donald and I were volunteered by my daughter to babysit for her friend Tashsa. Now you might think... rewarding? babysitting? are you nuts? But I want to share some photos and our story of growing our family.
Over that two and half years these children, all FIVE of them, we kept that first night have become family as has their mama, she's just another one of my adopted kids.
There is Laston who just turned 3, the twins James and Jonah who just turned 5 last week, Braylee who will be 6 next month and and Makayla who turned 11 on Wednesday earlier this week.
And because I want you to see the sweet video I'm going to link you to my Facebook page to check out their photos.
The reward has been 100% more than the work it takes to babysit or attend events for these little ones. We've been invited and gone to grandparents day at school, we've been to ball games, we've had dinner dates and movie nights with these children. And if you've never seen a 2 year old mesmerized by a movie try the Jungle Book. Donald calls James "man cub" ever since we took them to see that movie.
If your life isn't too full to add some joy... I strongly suggest you find a family who might need "adopting". I can almost guarantee there is a neighbor or a family in your church or community who really needs you and I promise the rewards will make your life richer. I can't imagine my life without these 5 little monkeys that call me Grammy and call Donald Papa Don.
I honestly haven't lived a lot of places. My parents have lived where they live today for 42 years and I grew up there. My dad was in the navy when I was born and I went home to my grandmother's house. Then dad came and picked us up and we went back to NJ for a little more than a year.
But the first house my parents owned together was a little 2 Bedroom 1 Bath where I lived for about 8 years. There was a vacant wooded lot next door that felt like "big woods" when I was a little girl, but it's cleared now and seems really small when I drive by. But I have a lot of memories made there.
My grand parents lived right up the street from there. My great grandmother (Nanny) lived just once house past my grandparents. I had cousins on my same street and more cousins right around the corner. It was a time when kids played outside and all the kids in the neighborhood played together. I have really great memories of friends, neighbors, and relatives hanging out in the tiny living room. That's my neighbor Penney, my Cousin Terri and my dad playing Monopoly with me (don't you love my striped pants?).
Winters were spent inside and the rest of the year we played outside. I was torn between the excitement of getting my own room and the missing my friends in the neighborhood when we moved from that house. When I read Paul's post I thought I was going to write about a historic house that had been divided into apartments that I lived in when I was 20. But in looking for photos I decided that his little house that was tiny and my parents first house they owned was the one. It's near and dear to my heart.
Yup, lots of happy memories were made it that little home. It's only about 10 miles from where I am right at this moment and I drive by from time to time. It was across the store from a store where I had my fist "job" I got paid 25 cents for picking up the trash from the parking lot and bagging purchases for the afternoon. I'm pretty sure I got a coke or an icee as well.
The photos are of my first Christmas there. A turkey I won at Thanksgiving by being the correct caller when I heard the gobble on the radio. Another Christmas with my dolly named Susan. The photo of the folks on the sofa are my dad's parents and my mom's grandmother and my daddy. The big group of kids are... one of my birthday parties. And the last one is with us playing a table top pool game that we spent a LOT of time playing. The little kid is my brother and the big kid is my youngest uncle. I apparently didn't want to ham it up for the camera that day.
Thanks for making me remember that house and those friends.
I'd love to help you find that first home to make memories that your family will treasure. Give me a call.
First time home buyers are what I love best about selling real estate. Donald often asks me when I get one of these clients if I have "adopted" another child. My usual answer is yes.
They aren't the easiest clients. They sometimes are at the bottom price point and always have tastes that exceed their budgets, but I don't mind digging to find out what the MUST haves are vs. the "but I really want" that list. I have several that really stand out in my memory.
One was a cash buyer. And a lot of you will probably laugh when I tell you that I helped this buyer find a house she could live in for $14,000. It did need new carpet and that was also in her budget. But she really wanted to stand on her own two feet and not have a mortgage payments and she'd saved money for three years and came to me with her dream. I wasn't the first broker she'd approached, but I was the first that said I would work with her.
It's years down the road and she still lives in that house. On moving day her movers broke her water line. And although the bill was just slightly less than the amount of my commission I paid a plumber to go over and fix that water line and I negotiated with the water company to adjust her bill for the leak.
Another is a young college professor who was a renter and wanted a house where she could grow her family. I found her a loan officer who was willing to find the best fit for her mortgage which turned out to be a USDA 100% financing loan. Now that meant that not only did she have to qualify for the loan, but the house did as well. In her price point again, it was no easy task. She ended up with an REO that required some repairs for the loan to close. Now the listing agent was certain that the bank was NOT going to make these repairs. But we sent the request in writing and the repairs were approved and made. She wrote my very first unsolicited review on Zillow and has sent me countless other buyers over the years.
Then there was the young man who I had done a bit of work for his grandfather who was a builder years ago... He also bought a prior foreclosure that was being flipped by an investor. When we found out that it was going to cost $3,000 to get the water turned back on we negotiated the seller to pay that cost to keep that buyer in a position to buy that home. He has since married and become a county commissioner. I later also sold his brother in law his first home which was the house he's brought all three of his babies home to for the first time. They are currently in the market to find a bigger house.
The most recent stand out first time home buyer that captured my heart was Connecticut. ( that's my pet name for her) It was one of those late night I picked up the phone times and we chatted. I signed her up on my web site and she planned a trip through my town where were had ONE day to find THE house. To date that 12 hour experience was my longest one day appointment. Granted she ended up with a fixer, but she ended up with one heck of lake view and she's really just my other daughter now. In May she's going to be one of my daughter's bridesmaids.
All of those first time buyers come from different walks of life, but the thing they have in common is I'm still in their phone contacts and I still hear from them all on a regular basis. Buyers and sellers have come and gone from my life, but never have I lost contact with a single one of those first time home buyers. I'm delighted to call each of them a friend. And I feel like each of them know that if they picked up the phone and told me that there was something they needed from me that I'd be right there with it just as quick as I could get there.
So yup, without a doubt, first time home buyers are what I love best about my job. And honestly I've learned so much from each of them as well. When last year about this time my daughter was under contract for her first home it was a much easier task because I had such a vast amount of experience with first time home buyers. When she would spaz out and they ALL do when it's their first time I was prepared. They range in age from not much younger than me to almost right out of high school and I love all of them. If it's not part of your niche and you're feeling a little eh about what you do for a living, take on a first time home buyer and I promise you'll get excited about real estate again.