Archive for January, 2011

The Connection between Unemployment and Home Prices

Thursday, January 27th, 2011

If you have been following news coverage about the recession over the last two years, you have probably heard many reporters mention foreclosures and unemployment in the same breath. It’s obvious how high foreclosure rates would follow high unemployment, as laid off workers sometimes struggle to keep up with their mortgage payments. But, less often discussed is the opposite: when jobs are readily available the number of qualified buyers grows, thereby increasing demand and subsequently home prices.

Iowa home values did not decline sharply as they did in the hardest hit regions during the recession largely because employment levels were stronger here than in many other parts of the country. These were key reasons why Des Moines topped the best cities lists of several organizations last year. And, Ames continues to post healthy unemployment rates, recently being named the lowest in the state among metro areas with a rate of only 3.9%.

Central Iowans should take courage that in spite of predictions that real estate values may experience single digit declines in some areas next year as foreclosure inventories continue to be sold off, because our area will probably continue to enjoy stable home values due largely to these promising employment figures.

Statistics and chart from the Des Moines Register

Post by Tabitha Zesch, Relocation Director.

Ames Market Recap

Wednesday, January 19th, 2011

Real estate made big news nationally throughout 2010. But what happened in our market locally?

In Ames, Iowa, 469 homes sold in 2010 for an average price of $180,306.  This is down from the average sales price in 2009 of  $186,721, and nearly identical to the 2008 average of $180,520.

Homes that sold were on the market for an average of 85 days before an offer was accepted. They sold for an average of 95.2% of their original list price. Hunziker & Associates, Realtors® accounted for 37.1% of the sales.

Are you considering a move in 2011? We would be happy to present you with the facts for your neighborhood and individual home. Contact one of our agents to schedule an informational meeting about your situation.

Post by Tabitha Zesch, Relocation Director

In Appreciation of Her Service

Wednesday, January 12th, 2011

We would like to express our appreciation to Diane Cox for serving as president of the Central Iowa Multiple Listing Service during 2010. She provided valuable leadership during a year of transition as the Boone & Ames MLS merged. Diane is a Realtor® at our Boone office.

Diane will continue to serve the business community in 2011 as a newly elected board member for the Boone Chamber of Commerce. Thank you for your service, Diane. We appreciate you!

2011: The Year a House Again Becomes a Home

Friday, January 7th, 2011

For almost a decade now, every time we talked about real estate we immediately discussed money. We didn’t talk about the value of a home but instead about the price of the house. We didn’t worry about a roof over our heads but instead the ceiling on our interest rate. We didn’t care as much about where we raised our family as we cared about how much we increased our family’s net worth.

That will change in 2011.

via 2011: The Year a House Again Becomes a Home.