Use Your China


I still drink from china cups and I still eat on a real plate with a “glass” of tea. Plastic is taking over our lives. Some of the sweetest moments are when you surround yourself with something that makes you feel beautiful

Use the china. Buy fresh flowers. Turn off the television and listen to music. Life is sweet.

Where Are Americans Moving?


Some Highlights:

  • For the 4th year in a row the Northeast saw a concentration of High Outbound activity.
  • Oregon held on to the top stop of High Inbound states for the 3rd year in a row.
  • Much of this Outbound activity can be attributed to Boomers relocating to warmer climates after retiring.

I Love Wendell Berry


Sharing a lovely thought from Wendell Berry with you today:

“I will say, from my own belief and experience, that imagination thrives on contact, on tangible connection. For humans to have a responsible relationship to the world, they must imagine their places in it. To have a place, to live and belong in a place, to live from a place without destroying it, we must imagine it. By imagination we see it illuminated by its own unique character and by our love for it. By imagination we recognize with sympathy the fellow members, human and nonhuman with whom we share our place. By that local experience we see the need to grant a sort of preemptive sympathy to all the fellow members,the neighbors with whom we share the world. As imagination enables sympathy, sympathy enables affection. And in affection we find the possibility of a neighborly, kind, and conserving economy”.

Wendell Berry, “It All Turns on Affection” The 41st Annual Jefferson Lecture of the National Endowment for the Humanities, 2012.

Will Appraisals Continue to be a Challenge in 2016?


First American Title issues a quarterly report, the Real Estate Sentiment Index (RESI), which “measures title agent sentiment on a variety of key market metrics and industry issues”. Their 2015 4th Quarter Edition revealed some interesting information regarding possible challenges with appraisal values as we head into 2016.

“The fourth quarter RESI found that title agents continue to believe that property valuation issues will be the most likely cause of title order cancellation over the coming year.” 

This shouldn’t come as a surprise. In a housing market where supply is very low and demand is very high, home values increase rapidly. One major challenge in such a market is the bank appraisal. If prices are jumping, it is difficult for appraisers to find adequate, comparable sales (similar houses in the neighborhood that closed recently) to defend the price when performing the appraisal for the bank. Another monthly report by Quicken Loans measures the disparity between what a homeowner believes their house is worth as compared to an appraiser’s evaluation. Here is a chart showing that difference for each month through 2015.


Bottom Line

Every house on the market has to be sold twice; once to a prospective buyer and then to the bank (through the bank’s appraisal). With escalating prices, the second sale might be even more difficult than the first. That is why I suggest that you use an experienced real estate professional to help set your listing price. Call me.


Signs, Signs…Everywhere Signs


Dear Buyer:

If you are considering buying a home in the near future…please think twice before you only call the realtor named on the signage posted outside the house.

There is no extra charge to have a real estate agent representing your interests and having a buyer’s agent could help you made a sound investment choice with an appropriate offer on the home you desire.

Obtain a knowledgeable REALTOR to represent YOUR best interests and make a wise choice for your next home.

You won’t regret it!