I was exploring my blogs this morning, after an alert that I had an unusual amount of visits this week. Also hearing the media reporting a 24% climb in home values it caught my interest. I had to explore the factual stats. I get calls almost daily about how the trend in a neighborhood or our neighborhood in Del Webb Nocatee are evolving.  I can pretty much pinpoint who visits my Blogs and Thursday I had 78 Realtors alone view my data. I suppose something has captured our professional’s interest.  

PERHAPS ON A NATION-WIDE SURVEY 24% MAY BE THE MEDIAN HOME SALES PRICE.

Connecticut and New Jersey appear to be the ONLY two regions across the entire United States to support this Media Hype. The rest of the United States is indicating a more reasonable 11% increase. With Florida coming in at 10.8% increase for the past 4 weeks ending September 13. The Graph below is provided by the National Association of Realtors.

Now let us look at Nocatee, Ponte Vedra, Florida; I have drilled down looking at data to support these findings. We are only seeing an average 6% increase!

The data I provide is available to most all Realtors depending on what subscriptions they have or tools available to them. I worked Commercial for many years and still have many of my tools to resource! Not sure if it’s a good thing or a curse, but I am OCD about accuracy.  I find it Interesting how many agents pull my data and use it for their listing presentations, or buyers’ presentations and guides.

Here is a break down with an overall average in the 32081 Zip code

This data consist of Previously owned, All Sizes, All Bedrooms. “This does NOT include new construction!”

2018 Median price $380,000

2019 Median price $396,738   Up 4.4% from 2018

2020 Median Price $410,000   Up 3.3% from 2019

SO, LETS DRILL DOWN A LITTLE BIT

A 4 bedroom or more, 2501 sq ft heated or more, previously owned, single family

2018       Median price $403

2019      Median Price $390,000                   DOWN 3.3% from 2018

2020      Median Price $412,000                 UP 5.8% from 2019 

NORTH NOCATEE ALL PRICE RANGES

                2018      Median Price $389,000

                2019      Median Price $339,000

                2020      Median Price $406,500                 UP 19%

SOUTH NOCATEE ALL PRICE RANGES

                2018      Median Price $369,000

                2019       Median Price $396,500

                2020       Median Price $385,000                 Down 2.9%

I have been asked recently what the trends in values, specifically in Del Webb, Nocatee. What’s disheartening, is our home in this category 3 bedroom 3 bath more than 2500 Sq Ft PLUS, heated, single family at $475,000 or more in this live stream is down on average by $40,000 or more since JULY 2020! Please click on the link below to follow the trends in real time. You can come back to this chart as it changes up or down.

https://realmls.stats.showingtime.com/infoserv/s-v1/uVp2-pms

It has only been 60 days or less that I reviewed this data. You can come back and review it at any time, Previously Owned. I see some homes listed in this category, with better marketing programs and photos that would easily maintain their value of $570,000 or better. These numbers are collected by the North Florida Multiple Listing Service AND showingtime.com, and properties sold outside these realms may vary depending on location and/or view of each independent property.

Learn some of the key areas of design to highlight when marketing your home! May I also suggest viewing new models that builders offer in different communities to give you some ideas how you may want to prepare your home if you choose to sell. These trends will especially help home sellers with homes built in the 80’s and 90’s.

Open floor plans, smart homes, and outdoor areas are among the features in top demand for home shoppers this year. Home improvement website Fixr’s recent study, Single-Family Home Construction and Remodeling Trends 2020(link is external), highlights the renovation and construction choices of buyers and homeowners in 2020. The results reveal some key areas of interest in home design that real estate professionals may want to spotlight.

1. Open floor plan and two-story homes represent the most popular layouts.

While there has been a trend toward open floor plans for the past few years, 2020 is seeing an overwhelming consensus: 90% of experts selected an open floor plan as the most popular single-family layout. And it’s likely to remain so in the future.

As quarantine periods and social distancing guidelines force families to spend more time together at home, large common areas command a premium value. Family rooms, dens, and open kitchen areas are acquiring new importance.

Another large percentage—77%—are favoring two-story houses in 2020. Compare this to the 29% who preferred single-story homes, or the 2% who favor split-level residences.

2. Smart homes rank first among design choices.

A growing trend in home design is the smart home, in which AI-based automation systems are seamlessly incorporated into electric circuits, heating/cooling systems, and entrances. Buyers this year are likely to appreciate homes in which smart thermostats, security cameras, and smart outlets are already installed.

Since installation of many smart systems is relatively affordable, this represents an important opportunity for real estate professionals to make their listings trendy, modern, and full-featured.

3. Most homeowners make accessibility modifications to their home for future personal use.

Homeowners looking to age in place are exploring renovations that allow them to do so more easily. Homes with accessibility features likely will be more attractive to senior buyers as they look toward a future of independence, even as their physical abilities may decrease. This future need is a motivating factor behind such renovations (54%) than current personal use (11%) or current use for an aging relative (22%).

Buyers also are evaluating potential homes with accessibility modifications in mind. For instance, a front yard with space for a ramp will be more appealing than one with front steps leading directly to the street.

4. Energy efficient homes with tight building envelopes are among the top designs for green construction.

As Americans deal with furloughs, layoffs, and economic uncertainty, many are paying more attention to their energy bills. Energy efficient homes are suddenly much more attractive than conventional properties, and buyers who may not have ever considered green construction are making energy efficiency a priority.

Sixty-two percent of design experts say energy efficient homes are a top priority in 2020, according to Fixr’s study, far outweighing other options like cool roofs or solar panels.

Experts say a tight building envelope—more than exterior or interior insulation—is the most common way to prevent energy seepage. A tight building envelope minimizes air transfer and can be an important feature of an energy efficient and environmentally friendly home. A home with both effective insulation and a tight building envelope will provide the best value to a buyer who desires lower energy bills and minimal heating requirements.

Experts say a tight building envelope—more than exterior or interior insulation—is the most common way to prevent energy seepage. A tight building envelope minimizes air transfer and can be an important feature of an energy efficient and environmentally friendly home. A home with both effective insulation and a tight building envelope will provide the best value to a buyer who desires lower energy bills and minimal heating requirements.

5. Family space and outdoor kitchens are trending in 2020.

Outdoor playsets, firepits, and recreation-oriented yards are seeing an uptick in popularity, especially among married couples with kids. For real estate and staging pros, this means that a little attention to backyards, porches, and other outdoor living areas can ignite extra buyer interest.

This is a 2020 trend that has only been cemented by quarantine rules and social distancing regulations. As playgrounds, parks, and outdoor amusements became unavailable, families were forced to think in terms of what outdoor activities they could offer their children on their own property.

But outdoor living spaces aren’t limited to playgrounds, decks, and patios. Fixr’s research shows that outdoor kitchens were nearly twice as popular as a traditional patio. The outdoor kitchen is another trend that has been steadily increasing over the past few years, and it will be interesting to see how it continues to evolve in 2020 and 2021. New recommendations for socially distant entertaining, which may be better suited for meals and meetings with friends outside, may increase the number of homeowners wanting both outdoor kitchens and seating spaces.

6. Contemporary and modern will be the most common styles used in modular construction.

Modular and prefab construction continues to be widely used, and Millennials are most likely to build modular homes. As part of the Fixr survey, consumers were asked which style of prefab building would be most popular in 2020. A large majority (62%) indicated that a contemporary, modern style would be most commonly selected by home buyers. The runner-up choice was ranch-style—but it was only selected by 22% of respondents.

This year has been in many ways an uncharted year, full of unexpected surprises. But even as priorities have changed, many home buying and renovation trends have remained consistent. Keeping track of these trends can help us stay relevant as we navigate the real estate industry in a socially distant world.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Yuka Kato is an industry analyst at fixr.com, a leading home improvement website dedicated to providing the most accurate cost guides and advice. She writes about interesting trends and insights in the construction and remodeling industry.

Remotely staging properties is a growing trend in the pandemic. This service may stick around even after the health crisis is over, considering the success some staging experts are having. My listings get advice and suggestions for staging their home for a higher net at closing. My listings receive Aerial and photography that excels in marketing techniques to capitalize on the highest and quickest sale possible. This is why I was put in the RE/MAX “HALL of FAME” List with the Best! Dan Swing CALL .. 904-671-9225 and Central and Central West Coast of Florida 863-412-6382!

This is an example of a video staging consultation with sellers in April, and then the home went under contract in just 12 hours. The homeowner emailed pictures of the home to staging company, they met over a FaceTime video call for two hours to stage the 3,000-square-foot property, inside and out.

BEFORE

In the family room, the staging discussion on the fireplace in the back corner. The staging provider had the sellers move the sofa and pare down the furniture and accessories, which drew eyes to the fireplace first.

AFTER

It was also urged that the sellers remove distracting decorative items and accessories, limiting kitchen countertops to only three items.

BEFORE

On curb appeal, it was recommended they showcase the front porch, such as with the addition of rocking chairs, hanging baskets of flowers, a fresh coat of paint on the front door, and a new doormat. “Today’s buyers are very discerning due to HGTV and Pinterest,” said one staging company. “Getting compelling and beautiful listing photos is always critical, but even more so in our current reality.”

AFTER

I have a contact that may arrange a plan for my buyers by offering remote staging consultations even after the pandemic. “I have been pleasantly surprised at how effective they are,”

KITCHEN BEFORE
KITCHEN AFTER

How much do you want to truly sell your home for? Do you want to sell it quickly? Are you willing to invest a few $$ to maximize your return? $$$$$

NURSERY BEFORE
NURSERY AFTER

Sometimes a little paint, different lighting, a few items of decor will more than pay for the time and effort put into preparing the sale of your property. I’ve been selling homes for over 20 years, and did not get into the RE/MAX Hall of Fame without helping my sellers, buyers and associate Realtors.

Credits, National Association of Realtors 8/2020

Whether its stimulus funds, or just moving to the in home office, many folks especially in 55 and older communities are prioritizing amenities. I have seen and experienced more than 20% of homeowners are rethinking their home amenities. Expanding their outside patio, to adding a screen room, or maybe an outdoor kitchen. Front yard gardening, adding tropical Palms and plants that compliment the tropical climate in Florida. Perhaps by accident buyers are understanding the perfect home is changing.

From grandparents to sons and daughters, a community that accommodates all. NOCATEE Ponte Vedra Florida

Comfortably settled in their community while working at homes has spawned new interest and ideas while taking breaks, walking around their property. Time on their hands, retired or working it’s becoming an important part of the new lifestyle. Many home owners were considering a move closer to their children, and now their children are seeking opportunities closer to their parents and grandparents. The value of family is growing and connecting a closer nit relationship.

The buyers, generation X, millennial’s, seniors on the verge of retiring, areas with independent living and assisted living where graduating as life’s challenges meet the pavement of reality. All are exploring communities that accommodate a strong versatility in education, entertainment, lifestyle changes, are all just a few of the trends we are experiencing. A greater emphasis on multi-generational entertainment — playgrounds, gyms and recreational centers, and large TV rooms or home theaters where everyone can enjoy a film or sporting events are becoming a highly sought after amenity. Boat owners are looking to move closer to marinas. It’s a new at home era where families can practice their hobbies all in one place.

Nocatee Florida accommodates entire generations

We are also seeing where buyers want more manageable spaces. More square footage, outdoor living accommodations, including the outdoor kitchens, fire pits to draw family and friends together and still accommodate social distancing. “A lot of people are doing more at-home entertaining, in small and limited groups, so they really want a nicely appointed outdoor setup, and in some cases prefer to entertain groups strictly outdoors,” Communities, like Nocatee, in Ponte Vedra Florida, are extremely diversified and accommodate most all of these demands. It’s why it’s one of the most sought after communities in the entire united states.

Along with more outdoor dining areas, club amenities, more affluent buyers have definitely “always sought out, and continue to seek great amenities.” This is a given and matters more than ever. Most buyers relocating to the state of Florida are still putting in their nine to five, 6 am to 8 pm and demand that private study, or suite, or library and suddenly these have moved to the top of the list for many prospective buyers.

Above and beyond the need for additional indoor or outdoor space is the desire for an area where professionals can continue to be productive and collaborative at work. Today’s buyers are disinterested in bringing renovation projects indoors. If they’re going to implement large-scale changes, they’ll put that investment into their gardens, patios, and general landscaping. “Covered or screened-in porches and electric awnings have become a new thing,” The biggest change I have seen is not in demand for size nor amenities, but rather demand for quality,”

Nationally real estate professionals — convey that markets that may have once been popular as a summer or a winter retreat are now being occupied year-round, and must therefore deliver constant value, from the overall lifestyle to the finest details.

Lets face it, in the new perfect world, outdoor and indoor amenities are important, however the consensus for the now and not too distance future are outdoor facilities to accommodate social distancing.

I wanted to share this, rarely does the public get the opportunity to view stats that are so accurate!

Dr. Jessica Lautz

Dr. Jessica Lautz is the Vice President of Demographics and Behavioral Insights at the National Association of REALTORS®.

As the effects of the pandemic continue, nine in 10 REALTORS® say their housing markets are in recovery mode, with many even saying their markets are hotter now than a year ago, recent member surveys from the National Association of REALTORS® show.

“The delayed spring market is definitely occurring now in the summer months,” says National Association of Realtors vice president Lautz of demographics and behavioral insights. The housing market is seeing unprecedented monthly jumps in existing-home sales, and home price appreciation remains strong

Lautz notes several insights, culled from recent NAR research, that show how buyers’ and sellers’ behavior is changing during the Coronavirus health crisis. She highlighted those findings at Thursday’s “REvive! From Crisis” virtual conference that featured an all-day lineup of industry leaders and speakers.

1. Buyers are in a rush. Last year, buyers looked at an average of nine homes before making a home purchase. Now, they are looking at three to four homes before initiating a contract. “Buyers are fast-forwarding their transactions,” Homes are selling in an average of just 24 days. More than a quarter of REALTORS® report their buyers are acting with greater urgency over recent weeks, particularly those making home purchases in rural areas.

2. Wish lists are shifting. Home shoppers are changing some of their priorities for home features. For example, NAR research shows that the top feature desired by buyers is a home office. Many households may need more than one. Also, more home buyers are sizing up outdoor space, showing an increasing desire for a pool, garden, or just more space to enjoy the outdoors.

3. Buyers are less concerned about commutes. As remote work grows, 22% of about 2,300 REALTORS® surveyed by NAR say their buyers are becoming less concerned about commute time when shopping for a home. Freedom from the bounds of the commute has allowed some buyers to expand their searches beyond city centers to the suburbs and exurbs—which may also offer more affordable housing. A quarter of REALTORS® report their buyers are looking away from the city center and toward to the suburbs or smaller towns. “If workplaces keep changing and there’s this greater acceptance of remote working, this trend could stick around longer,” Lautz says. Also, second homes may be in greater demand. “If they can work from any place, we could see more buyers embrace second homes in rural areas,” Lautz said.

4. Multi generational households may grow more common again!  One in six Generation Xers and younger baby boomers purchased a multi generational home pre-COVID. Lautz suggests that trend could increase as more generations, including aging parents and adult children, all come under the same roof during the pandemic. “Moving forward, that could mean your buyers will be looking for larger single-family homes,” Lautz says. “They also may want to make sure they have a sizable living space on the first level” for “AND AGING PARENT!” Also, recent surveys show a growing desire of buyers—particularly younger buyers—wanting to live closer to their family. The top reasons to move before the pandemic were a new job, marriage, or baby. But now most moves are being driven by young Millennials—twenty-somethings—who want to be near their family or friends. “The family unit appears to be becoming more important, and I think COVID could increase this trend,” Lautz says.

5. Pets could drive purchase decisions. The pandemic has sparked a surge in households that want a pet. NAR surveys have shown that pets can influence when and where people buy. Forty-three percent of households say they’d be willing to move to better accommodate their pet, according to NAR’s 2020 pets in real estate study, “ANIMAL HOUSE: Pet in the Home Buying and Selling Process.” “We see consumers actually want to buy a property because of a pet, and then they may want a fenced-in yard and extra space for their animals,” Lautz says.

6. A first-time buyer wave could emerge. Consumers may show more commitment to their home than to long-term relationships. In the 1980s, 75% of first-time buyers were married. In 2019, that dropped to 53%. Young adults are waiting longer to get married. Meanwhile, unmarried couples are buying homes at the highest levels ever recorded by NAR: 17%. Also, NAR research has seen a rise in roommates pooling their incomes to purchase a home together. NAR’s research shows that percentage at a mere 4%, but Lautz notes it’s the highest share that NAR has ever recorded. Overall, in 2019, first-time buyers comprised 33% of the housing market, still a low number by historical standards. “But there could be an uptick, particularly in affordable places further out,” Lautz says. “If young professionals become less tied to a metro area for work—in metros where it can be difficult to afford a property—they may increase their purchases.”

7. Housing tenure could fall. Over recent years, homeowners have stayed put in their homes longer than they have in past—an average of 10 years, which is longer than the traditional six-year average. Americans are not moving longer distances like they did in the 1980s. As cities urged stay-at-home restrictions during the pandemic, consumers may start to question whether their home fits their current needs. “Interest rates are at all-time lows; [consumers] may want to move and find a home where they can work from and the kids can too, and they want more yard space to relax,” Lautz notes. “This change in homeowner tenure could be one we see coming soon.”

Twenty-five percent of home buyers reported the pandemic has caused them to move — or speed up their moving timeline, according to a survey conducted by Redfin

“FAST TRACK NOW”

Three-quarters of home buyers who plan to buy a home within the next 12 months say the pandemic has affected their home buying plans, according to a SURVEY conducted by Redfin. In addition, 25 percent of home buyers reported the pandemic has caused them to move — or speed up their moving timeline.

“Somewhat counter intuitively, the Corona virus driven recession is propping up the housing market,” Redfin Chief Economist Daryl Fair weather said in a statement. “Home buyer demand is surging despite GDP taking a historic nosedive in the second quarter, largely because Americans value the home more than ever and are willing to prioritize housing even as they cut back on other expenses. Additionally, the Fed is using low interest rates to stimulate the economy, which is giving buyers more purchasing power and boosting home sales. But even with low rates, widespread unemployment and financial uncertainty mean not everyone who wants to buy a home is able to.”

A desire to capitalize on low mortgage rates and more time spent at home are both significant factors impacting home buyers’ decision to move. Fifty-five percent of survey respondents who said the pandemic is causing them to move or move sooner said that low mortgage rates were a factor in their decision. Meanwhile, 52 percent said spending more time at home was a factor in their decision and 40 percent said working from home has impacted their desire to move.

At the time Redfin’s survey was sent out — July 19-21 — the average 30-year mortgage interest rate was 2.98 percent, a historical low. In terms of desired home features, most respondents indicated a preference for more space, a desire spurred by the need to stay at home more often. Twenty-one percent of respondents said they want a designated work-from-home space, and the same percentage said they wanted more outdoor space. Furthermore, 10 percent of respondents said they want a bigger home and 7 percent want a designated space for their kids to learn from home.

I worked the Foreclosure Crisis in 2008 through 2014 and I honestly believe as long as these mortgage holders communicate with their lenders we”won’t see this happen due to the challenges we are facing!”

Florida Trend published today Monday August 3, 2020!

About 389,000, or 10.5 percent, of Florida’s 3.7 million mortgage-holders were delinquent on loan payments in late May, presaging what some fear could be an emerging foreclosure crisis as bad if not worse than the one that followed the 2008 housing crash. Don’t let the media frighten you!

With the lowest interest rates since the 50’s we are experiencing a huge boost of buyers and investors from the Northeast purchasing homes all along the East Coast of Florida! Miami through Jacksonville and I’m sure other parts of Florida we’re seeing the new tomorrow! Over seas corporate business are moving back to the states. Corporations experiencing huge are moving to states with more desirable tax breaks and credits. Yes we have lost many small businesses, however as we move through these challenges we’ll see a remarkable recovery. Big corporations, “Allowing production for their employees from home!” is stimulating buyers to look at an extra bedroom and making it their future office. I’m seeing high end homes becoming a popular market for these wealthier investors.

We hear the construction industry home starts have plummeted as much as 54% in June South Florida construction starts took a nosedive in June, continuing the trend since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Nonresidential construction declined 43 percent in June, year-over-year, to $239.6 million, while residential construction dropped 61 percent to $265.4 million during the same period, according to a new report from Dodge Data & Analytics (Source: The Real Deal) Where is this rhetoric all coming from?

Home prices have hit record highs in Volusia, Flagler counties and I’m seeing multiple offers on homes in St. John’s and Duval Counties. Area Realtors chalk it up to increased demand, super low interest rates and shrinking supply of available homes because of the COVID-19 fears on the part of many would be sellers.

New construction? Builders are offering as low as 2.5% mortgage rates for their homes. New construction does not seem to be slowing down in our area, mostly because these buyers moving to Florida want immediate move in ready homes. In an interesting article published July 13, by Florida Trend Real Estate, home prices in Florida and Arizona expected to drop due to COVID-19 “perfect storm” Despite home prices increasing 4.8% year over year in May, a report by CoreLogic predicts home prices will stall over the summer and estimates a 6.6% decline by May of 2021. What I find remarkable, from June 1st through June 22nd, Del Webb in Nocatee had multiple offers on homes and couldn’t keep enough inventory. When it was announced COVID-19 was becoming prolific in Florida, buyers all but stopped. A real good thing, is that many homes that sold much lower than originally listed have similar models and sizes now securing buyers at a much higher price. Marketing, staging, photography, presentation, and how quickly move-in-ready are certainly determining factors!

So who is correct in a Pandemic environment? I am beginning to believe we are experiencing an up and down trend depending on the environment the media is creating. We will only know as the trending model, “What the market will bear!” experiences! We can’t expect to abide by this statement for the entire rest of 2020, since a Hurricanes, Major Election, Pandemic, Corporate relocation, motivation of buyers and sellers, and I can go on and on with historic and current market trends. Is it all speculation? At the moment, our local trend is a motivation for sellers to consider when listing with a good Realtor!

I didn’t make it to the RE/MAX Hall of Fame without representing my buyers and sellers with outstanding representation.

When you want to sell your house, it might surprise you to learn that there are times when putting it on the market is going to result in a quick sale. But another time will lead to your home sitting on the market for months without an offer.

Most homeowners more often that not, do not understand how they can tell if it is a buyers’ or sellers’ market. This is something that an experienced real estate agent can tell you by showing you the most recent data on what is going on in your area.

You must keep in mind that the data for one city or town may not mirror what’s going on in another. You can have a buyers’ market in one city in a state and a sellers’ market in another city in the exact same state.

The difference will come into play when a property can or cannot be moved. This is something that I use my tools, through professional subscriptions, that are only accessible as a licensed Realtor. You may discover some of these answers but be aware they can be misleading at times.

Selling a house works just like any business does. It is based on supply and demand. When you have a lower inventory than you have customers, the demand in a normal market is high.

So that means that it is a sellers’ market. This market can also change even within the same town or city. One neighborhood might be a sellers’ market while a neighborhood a mile down the road will be a buyers’ market. This was something Del Webb experienced June 1st, through June 22nd. Buyers were quickly moving to Florida from the Northeast to get away from the COVID-19 hot spots. Well they brought it with them.

Other things can sway the type of market we are in. Amenities that the area offers and the cost that you have to sustain these under a Homeowners Association and/or Community Development District. If it has what people are looking for, that can also affect and alter the market.

Some things that change a market are which school district the home is in, proximity to places of convenience, and desirability of the area. A market can also be influenced by the selling price of the house. I have experienced sellers that just want to sell and will accept any reasonable offer. This effect the overall value of homes in a specific community.

Homes in a certain price range may be more in demand that other a different model home has to offer.  If a buyer has a lot of homes to choose from in the area that he or she wants to be in, then it’s a buyers’ market.

If there are few homes in that area, then it can be a sellers’ market. You can figure it out by asking your agent or you can go online and look at the number of homes that are for sale in your area. However, the online data is not always accurate.

Check to see how many of the homes have a sale pending. When you divide the listed properties by the contracted ones, that will tell you the sales rate or the number of inventories that is moving versus the amount on hand. If it takes homes less than three months to sell, that’s usually a sellers’ market.

Whether we are in a sellers’ market or a buyers’ market I tend to suggest that my sellers get a Home Inspection prior to placing it on the market. This helps when you close a CASH offer quickly, and it also helps you put out any RED flags in discovery.

You ask what is the importance of this? You eliminate any potential room to negotiate a lower sales price at closing. Never give the buyer an open opportunity to leverage you down on the sale price. At the end of the day, and you finally close on your property, everyone walks away happy!