Blog :: 08-2013

Not Just a Voice in the Wilderness - Home Ownership Matters - National Assoc of Realtors Update


By NAR 2013 President Gary Thomas

REALTORS® are finally being heard, and it makes you want to jump and shout!

Today President Obama delivered the message loud and clear--Home Ownership Matters!

I'm pleased to say that our efforts to make our voices heard by the Administration have had a positive impact. The President agrees with the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) on an overwhelming majority of the housing finance issues of the day.

In a speech at the Desert Vista High School in Phoenix, the President spoke to area REALTORS® and others about housing policy and his vision for reform of the housing finance system. In the speech, he stated his commitment to ensuring consumers retain access to the 30-year mortgage--traditionally the quickest route into the middle class--and cutting red tape so that families have access to safe, reliable mortgages.

Additionally, the President expressed support for reform of the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs). He said the Administration plans to continue the phase-out of GSEs Fannie Mae andFreddie Mac, now in conservatorship. At the same time, he supports the creation of a common securitization platform to encourage investment in mortgage-backed securities. NAR agrees with the Administration's view that any new system includes a government guarantee.

The President said he supports the historic affordability role of the FHA, which is critical to first-time homebuyers. While we support the goal of maintaining the FHA as an affordable option, NAR believes the FHA should preserve access for all qualified middle class families.

The Administration calls on Congress to approve refinance programs that provide more relief to troubled borrowers. NAR supports the government's refinancing program, known as "HARP," along with "bright line" standards that provide certainty to community banks selling loans on the secondary mortgage market.

While we have concerns about specific FHA reforms, protecting loan limits and keeping down payments low, we believe recent bipartisan legislation introduced in the Senate is a good place to start.  President Obama made good use of the bully pulpit in stating his commitment to protecting the dream of homeownership for all Americans.

Over the past year, REALTORS® have sometimes felt like a voice in the wilderness. No longer.

Heath Fair is this weekend!

Come to the Heath Fair - August 16th, 17th, and 18th!  
This is an old fashion fair that attracts so many people locally and afar.   There is fun for everyone - games, events, exhibits, food, music, fireworks competitions and more. It is going to be a beautiful weekend - come out and support this wonderful fair. Bring your family and friends and have some summertime fun.

For more details and fair schedule, click here to the Heath Fair website!

July 2013 Single Family Sales Report Update for the Pioneer Valley Region

The month of July showed positive signs in the real estate market.  It was one of our best months as well as the company.  I am receiving the same positive news from my colleagues and the latest statistics clearly show we are in a very good market across the Pioneer Valley region.

The statistics is comparing July 2013 vs. July 2012:

Pioneer Valley Region sales were up 17.7%
Median price climbed 8.9%

Franklin County sales were up 12.8%
Median price climbed 16.2%

Hampshire County sales were up 19.8%
Median price dropped 1.9%

Inventory of available property is down about 10% across the pioneer valley region.   The days on market fell 28% from 132 days in July, 2012 to 95 days in July 2013.   When you see this begin to happen there is a chance property values will start to increase.   The more populated areas will experience this change before those that are listed in the hilltowns.  

Mortgage rates for 30 year was 3.49 last year and now they are 4.31% which is quite an increase and can make a big difference when qualifying for a loan.

The information above is provided by the Realtor Association of Pioneer Valley, Inc.

New Listings - Starter Home, Waterfront, Log Home, Condo and Unique Contemporary

Exceptional waterfront home with 7 acres and 260ft of frontage right on Crooked Pond.  This pond is mostly surrounded by protected wooded land and it is pristine and very peaceful.   The 2700sqft, 9 room, multi level rustic contemporary is the perfect retreat or year round home.   It has a warm and inviting interior that features large exposed beams, cathedral ceiling, fireplace, wood floors, 1st floor master suite, and a screened in porch that overlook the magnificent views!  It has a 2 car garage and beautiful grounds!  This property is a rare find and must be seen in person! Plainfield, Ma $495,000
Take the visual tour and check out this fabulous waterfront home:
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Uniquely designed Contemporary Post & Beam surrounded by beautiful landscape, gardens, stonewalls and a lovely view! You can listen to the sounds of the nearby babbling brook or enjoy hiking at the Hawley State Forest located within walking distance. This home features cathedral ceilings, exposed posts and beams, wood floors, 2-story Silo, fabulous enclosed porch, deck and a adorable sleeping guest cottage. A tranquil and inviting setting makes this an ideal getaway or year round home. Hawley, Ma $259,000
Preview the visual tour to see interior and exterior photos of this fabulous property:

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Here is your chance to own a garden level condo at Myers Farm. This home features an open kitchen, dining and living area with patio doors to a mahogany deck that is surrounded by your own garden area. The kitchen has lots of cabinets, nice pantry and a center island. The spacious master suite has a large walk in closet and full bath. In addition there is a second bedroom, full bath, laundry room, gas heat, central air, 9ft ceilings and 1 car garage with storage. Greenfield, Ma $210,000

To preview more photos, check out the tour:

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This is log home living at its best & the location is a 10! This is one of Shelburne's finest neighborhoods known at the "Patten". The park-like setting is surrounded by a manicured lawn, lovely gardens and picturesque meadow views. This charming log home has been well maintained & the interior is warm and inviting. The kitchen has a large center island and its open to the dining and living area. There are 3 bedrooms, 1 full bath, full basement, 2 car garage, fabulous deck and wood and oil heat.
$284,000



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This wonderful Ranch style home has been remodeled top to bottom and it shines! It has an open floor plan with a fabulous kitchen with lots of attractive cabinetry. In addition there is a large dining and living area; master suite with full bath and walk-in closet; two bedrooms and full bath; laundry closet; and a fenced in yard! Nothing needs to be done to this place but move in. It is conveniently located on the hill in Turners Falls. The perfect starter home! $189,000


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Seth Glier performing at the Greenfield Energy Park

If you haven't had the opportunity to see Seth Glier in concert, this is your chance.  He is playing this Sunday at the Greenfield Energy Park from 6 to 8.  His is an amazing singer/songwriter and a great entertainer.   
Seth was nominated for a Grammy and is always on the road performing across the country. He has had the pleasure of sharing the stage with many famous singers and he is on his way to be considered one of the best in his industry.   I know Seth personally and he not only has an amazing gift, he is a wonderful person.  I could not be happier that he is doing so well.  
You can visit his site at www.sethglier.com and learn more about him and listen to some of his music!

35th Annual Bridge of Flowers Road Race August 10th!

The annual Bridge of Flowers road race is this weekend, Saturday August 10th. The Steve Lewis Subaru Charity 3K walk and run begins at 8:15 AM and the Classic starts at 9:00 a.m.  Come support the runners and cheer for those you know!   After the race walk around town and enjoy shopping at the many fabulous artisan's showrooms and enjoy lunch or dinner at one of the local restaurants.  

Click here for more information and details about the race!

Neat Opportunity to own a Historic Church

c.1835 Historic Congregational Church is an antique treasure and the perfect restoration project. This solid Brick structure has many of the original features and is conveniently located in the center of Colrain. The lower level has a kitchen area and restroom along with a wide open span that lends itself to many business opportunities. The Sanctuary has all the original pews and the church bell is still in place. Highly visible & plenty of parking. Bring your ideas & ambition! Great Structure. This property is zoned CV and any use of this property must go through a Site Plan Review by the town.  $75,000

For more photos - check out the visual tour:

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