Interest Rates Still Near All Time Lows

Today the 30 year fixed mortgage rate is at 3.47% and the 15 year fixed mortgage rate is 2.71%.  These rates are only slightly higher than the all time lows, so now is a great time for home affordability.  While rates may tick down slightly in the next few months, historical evidence suggests they will eventually head much higher.  If you are in the market for a home, now is a great time to purchase.  Give me a call at (417) 337-1627 — I’d love to help.

Branson Real Estate Sales Officially Up in 2010

I was thumbing through some sales data yesterday and came upon some interesting numbers.  Sales in 2009 were around 1,100 units and that number has risen to around 1,350 units in 2010…a rather nice gain year over year.  I project that the number of home sales will be higher again in 2011, but not materially.  However, some sellers are finally capitulating and some buyers are finally convinced that prices in the area are not going materially lower in the near future so only time will tell.  For now though interest rates are excellent and if a buyer is motivated to act quickly to buy the right piece of Branson real estate, nice deals can be had.  Just my two cents.

Interest Rates Hit 6 Month Highs

Rates on fixed rate 30 year mortgages rose for the fourth straight week, hitting 4.61 today.  That’s up from the 4.17 percent record lows of just a month ago.  While I won’t go into a long diatribe about why rates are climbing, I will voice my opinion that if you are looking to buy a home and will need a mortgage it would behoove you to take action as quickly as possible.

Emerald Point on Table Rock Lake Shows Construction Starts

I was out at Emerald Point yesterday showing one of my listings and noticed a few new homes being built in Emerald Point; I think four to be exact. For those of you who know Emerald Point, it is a great upscale gated lakefront community that has sweeping views of Table Rock Lake and is only 10 minutes south of Branson.

Anyhow, I was rather excited to see builders going forward and starting to build again. I think this says something about the area and where we are relative to the larger US markets — that our supply -demand fundamentals here in the Branson area never really got that far out of whack.

We have 7 million + visitors per year, of which many consider retiring to the area. Since we only have in the 35,000 person range as a population to begin with here in Taney County, we can’t help but grow even if only 1/2 of 1/2 of 1/2 a percent of our visitors decide to stay. That’s one reason I’m optimistic (but still realistic!) on the future of real estate in Branson, Mo.

Though It Sounds Silly, Knock Before You Buy

Sometimes my clients look at me funny when, before they are about to make an offer on a house, I tell them to go knock on the neighbor’s doors and take a minute or two to get to know them. I advise them to do this, because like it or not, there is more to real estate than comps, days on market, interest rates, etc. There is also a HUMAN element to buying a home.

Most of you can probably relate to my reasoning as you have an ornery neighbor or two. Maybe the person’s door you knock on will give you an inside look at the neighborhood: does the guy across the street have really lake, loud parties every night of the week? Do he park a huge eyesore of a boat in his driveway in the warmer months? Does he seemingly forget to cut his grass for weeks at a time? These are real issues, ones that you can’t find the answer or even know to look for if you just go off first impressions. Just my two cents…especially when buying homes in Branson, Mo.

Taneycomo Bridge Moving Forward

Though its not exactly breaking news anymore, the double bridge system over Lake Taneycomo is going forward in the near future. This is great news for residents of East 76, T Highway, and Kirbyville who have waited in hours upon hours of traffic simply trying to cross the darn lake during peak hours. This should have a positive impact on values in those areas. Also, the fact that there is now a grocery store in that vicinity (Sunfest) and that the Coon Creek road project will further benefit the area by allowing more expedient access to Hollister is going to be a boon for the area. It’s great when county planning finally catches up with the needs of area residents.

Branson Industrial Park Infrastructure Being Installed

Though the project was started well before the market corrections of late 2008, the Branson Industrial Park is still under construction. Located off highway 248 at Buena Vista Drive, the Park features a huge inventory of commercial lots (at least by area standards) as well as 180 residential lots tucked away on beautiful winding streets at the northwest corner of the property. Though it may seem counterintuitive, now may be a good time to pick up some developed lots at a bargain price. If you are looking to take advantage of the dislocation of supply and demand fundamentals, give me a call and we’ll see what deals are out there. 417.337.1627.

Radon Becoming A Growing Concern

In years past, the presence of radon was not even considered when purchasing a home in the Ozarks. In the past year though, the concern over this deadly element is becoming of greater concern, adding yet another cost to buying a home in the form of radon testing which ranges from $150 – $300. This cost can be negotiated, but generally if the buyer wants it the buyer pays for it. Also, if you are building a new home here in the area, it is significantly cheaper to build in a radon system at construction than to go in and retrofit later. If you have questions about this issue, give me a call at 417.337.1627.