real estate market: TIME; NOT TIMING - 06/20/08 08:59 AM
Question: When is the best time to buy?
Answer: When you are ready.
I was watching a Celtics/Lakers game when a commercial came on for a financial services firm. I was barely paying attention, but then I saw the phrase: "Time; Not Timing". Great advice.
Markets will always cycle up and down and their complexities make the timing difficult to predict.  Real estate has real value, and with inflation engineered into the economy, it is destined to keep pace (upward) over the long term.
A critic once told me that stocks provided a better return than real estate, … (4 comments)

real estate market: I Wish I Would Have Bought Back Then - 04/29/08 05:13 AM
I had the chance to purchase a house for $25,000 in 1976.  My friend decided to sell it to his sister instead.  Three years later it was worth $50,000.  I finally bought a couple of years after, but found myself wishing I had bought a bunch of property "back then".
I was fortunate to carry three properties during the recent boom, but wish I had bought more "back then" in the 1990's.  Many people wish they had bought just one back then.  The good news:  It is back then.  Prices in some areas and for some properties have rolled back seven or … (1 comments)

real estate market: What Comes Down Must Go Up - 04/24/08 07:44 AM
The first stage of the rebound is well underway in the Twin Cities real estate market.  How it plays out remains to be seen but history and current trends give us good clues.  Markets are cyclical and excesses, whether up or down, sew seeds bearing the opposite reaction.  The harder the fall, the greater the rebound, be it in strength or length.
Anatomy of a Rebound
Stage one of the rebound is reduced seller activity.  In 1989, listings processed began a ten year decline.  This led to a real estate boom, starting several years later.  In 1999, listings began a seven year incline.  … (0 comments)

real estate market: Zillow is Stupid - 02/07/08 02:34 PM
I was just plugging in addresses for fun to see what Zillow's Zestimate is.  According to the Great Zillow, one property that just sold for $70,000 is worth $176,000.  Another one listed at $159,000 is worth $246,000, and another one that was listed at $242,900 and has sold and closed, is currently listed for $276,000 according to Z.  Not so bright, huh.
Any professional knows that you can't rely on a computer program for an accurate property value.  But not all of the general public knows this, and in fact some otherwise bright young techies think the website is smarter and more … (5 comments)

real estate market: The Case Against Case (Shiller) - 02/07/08 01:53 PM
The Standard & Poor's/Case Shiller Index was released Tuesday, January 29th, showing an 8.4% drop in real estate prices in November, 2007 from November 2006.  Case Shiller is a highly reported index that is alleged to be more accurate than the statistics provided by the Realtor associations.
The argument is that the Realtors report the average or median price of all sales from one year to the next, which is a different group of homes each year.  Case Shiller only uses cases where the same home has sold twice, using the apples vs. apples argument.  There is logic to this argument, but … (2 comments)

real estate market: Seeking Stability - 01/29/08 08:27 AM
Seeking Stability
The 2007 statistics for the Twin Cities real estate market were released at a press conference by the local real estate associations on January 16th, 2008.  The highlights were as follows:
Listings processed, 105,004, down 2.8%
Sales, 40,055, down 16.4%
Inventory of homes for sale at year end, 26,675, up 16.8%
Average sale price, $274,767, down 1.3%
For excellent, detailed reports on the market, go to the Minneapolis Association of Realtors website:
It was a disappointing year for many, but important for the long term health of the market.  No one likes to see prices drop, but after ten years of rapid appreciation we need … (0 comments)

real estate market: Telling a Story - 12/14/07 08:04 AM
I just made an offer on a property today.  After selling my house this summer, I'm trying to find a new home.  This is my fifth attempt to buy something.  That's right; I've made five offers on five different properties.  I lost the previous four in multiple offer situations.  Yea, I made low offers on two of them, but one offer was full price and one was $8,000 over list.  Did someone say this was a bad market?
There are probably a number of lessons to learn here, but this has reminded me of one I've known for years: The … (3 comments)

real estate market: Signs of the Bottom - 11/24/07 07:53 AM
We are often asked if it's time to buy yet.  Has the market hit bottom or is it still falling?  The simple answer is: If you are ready to buy, now is a good time.  "Maybe you're right Pat, but isn't that what you Realtors always say?"  Perhaps, but then we're usually right.  "Do I detect a hint of arrogance?"  I prefer to call it confidence, but bear with me here.
In every market there are a number of fairly priced properties, some bargains, and some over priced dumps.  Now is no different, except with a higher inventory and a number of … (0 comments)

real estate market: The Greatest Investment - 06/30/07 07:20 AM
It may seem strange during this time when all we hear is "Buyers market" to call real estate the Greatest Investment.  But it has been and will continue to be the best tool used by most Americans to build wealth.  There are two primary reasons why we rate this as the greatest investment.
Home and Investment
Real estate is one of few consumer products that doubles as an investment.  It is an investment that has utility. You can live in it or rent it out.  Shelter is a basic need - we all have to live somewhere.   It has a usage, or rental … (2 comments)

real estate market: Market Needs to Find Itself - 06/25/07 09:47 AM
The National Association of Realtors reported today that sales of existing single family homes dropped to an adjusted annual rate of 5.99 million in May, the slowest pace since June 2003.  Pardon me, but I thought 2003 was a pretty good year for real estate sales.  The median sale price was down 2.1%, and the average price was down .8% from May of 2006.
"I think psychological factors are currently the biggest drag on the housing market, in addition to disruption from tighter credit for subprime borrowers," said Lawrence Yun, senior economist with NAR.  I couldn't agree more.
Yes, the boom is over, … (4 comments)

real estate market: Minneapolis Condo Conversion Boom; Why it Happened and How it Helped the City - 06/15/07 08:50 AM
Minneapolis has seen an unusually high number of rental apartments converted to condominiums in the last few years. This has received considerable negative attention, since some tenants have been forced to move and some affordable rental units have been lost. But the conversions came at a time when they were desperately needed, and provided a near perfect remedy to market imbalances. A report prepared by a Minneapolis CPED intern identified 1,252 units converted from 2001 through 2005. As of the 2000 census, Minneapolis had a total of 168,624 households. The units converted amounted to less than three fourths of one percent … (0 comments)

Pat Paulson, Realtor Minneapolis, Minnesota (Exit Realty Metro)

Pat Paulson

Realtor Minneapolis, Minnesota

Minneapolis, MN

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