maine: Yarmouth Clam Festival This Weekend! - 07/11/10 10:12 AM
Now in its 45th year, the Yarmouth Clam Festival, from July 16 to July 18, is Maine's premier summer family festival.  This year's festival features the state's biggest parade, a huge array of delicious food including lots of seafood choices, as well as the usual art and craft displays.
Unique contests include the Maine State Clam Shucking Contest, a diaper derby, a professional bike race, a firefighters' muster, foot races for kids and adults, and canoe and kayak racing.
As with most Maine fairs, look for evening fireworks, rides, and other fun things to do in Maine during the summer.
Admission is free to the Clam … (4 comments)

maine: New Lising in Gorham - Maine Real Estate - 06/23/10 03:48 PM
New Listing in Gorham - Maine Real Estate
Are you shopping for a new home before the new school year?
How about moving in with some summer still left to enjoy?  This 3 bedroom Cape has it all, just move in, and relax.            
Are you worried about high oil prices this winter?  Turn down the thermostat and fire up the centrally located wood stove.
If you're looking for a first floor bedroom and full bath, along with 2 more bedrooms and a bath upstairs, this is the house for you.       
Don't wait, for the best in Maine Real Estate … (2 comments)

maine: Old Port Festival - This Sunday, June 13 - 06/10/10 08:01 AM
It's this Sunday, from 11 - 5.  The festivities kick off with a parade at 11:00am followed by live music, food, shopping, and surprises. 
Events include pony rides, roller coasters, tilt-a-whirl and giant slides for the kids, a rock climbing wall and bungee trampoline for all ages, art and crafts from over 90 local artists and craftspeople, and live music for all tastes.
Parking is available at the Spring Street Garage, Custom House Square Garage, Cumberland County Garage, One City Center Garage, Temple Street Garage, Casco Bay Lines Garage, Top of the Old Port Parking Lot, Elm Street Garage, Gateway Parking Garage and … (0 comments)

maine: Westbrook Together Days - This Friday and Saturday - 06/03/10 04:00 PM

Westbrook Together Days - This Friday and Saturday                  
For the 31st consecutive year, the merchants of Westbrook are putting on their annual celebration.  Friday night's featured performer is Motor Booty Affair, followed by a fireworks show. 
Saturday starts with a pancake breakfast at 7:00, a parade down Main Street at 10:00, entertainment featuring Rick Charette and the Bubblegum Band, Drouin Dance Center dancers, Acorn Productions, Jukado and many others throughout the day.  Like Friday, Saturday concludes with a fireworks show.
There are 113 Single Family Homes, 27 Condos and 22 Multi Unit currently for sale in Westbrook.
For more information, log … (0 comments)

maine: The Tax Credit for First Time Buyers is Gone, Right? - 05/06/10 07:08 AM
The Tax Credit for First Time Buyers is Gone, Right?

Yes, contracts had to be signed by April 30th for the Federal Tax credit, but Maine still has Gift of Green money available.  The Maine State Housing Authority is offering eligible borrowers who use a MaineHousing mortgage:
A grant of $2500 to help with the cash needed for closing, such as any required down payment, closing costs, and prepaids. A coupon worth up to $500 for a 2-part home energy audit. The Gift of Green really is a gift - it will not be added to the loan amount and does not need to be paid … (0 comments)

maine: 24th Annual Chocolate Lovers’ Fling - This Weekend in Portland - 04/06/10 03:22 PM
24th Annual Chocolate Lovers' Fling - This Weekend in Portland    .
It's this Sunday, April 11th from 1 to 4 at the Holiday Inn by the Bay on Spring Street.
All proceeds benefit Sexual Assault Response Services of Southern Maine.
Check it out after attending all of the Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage Open Houses this Sunday!
For the latest in real estate news check out

maine: Maine Home Sales Rise 14% in February, Prices Stable - 03/24/10 07:42 AM
The real estate market in Maine continued its slow recovery last month with 494 units sold, compared with 433 sold in February 2009, an increase of 14%.  The median price for homes sold in February was $158,000, in line with numbers reported in February 2009.  This compares with 555 units sold in February 2008 and 698 in February 2007.  The median sold price in February 2007 was $193,950, 18.5% higher than February 2010.  These figures are courtesy of the Maine Real Estate Information System, Inc.
According to The National Association of Realtors, existing home sales nationwide rose 4.3 percent in February … (0 comments)

maine: Pending Home Sales Dip in January in Northeast and Nationwide - 03/08/10 01:11 PM
The National Association of REALTOR's (NAR) Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contracts signed in January, fell 7.6 percent to 90.4 from an upwardly revised 97.8 in December, but remains 12.3 percent higher than January 2009 when it was 80.5.  The index was originated in 2001 and a score of 100 represents the market at that time.
The index in the Northeast fell 8.7 percent to 71.3 in January but is 20.5 percent higher than January 2009.  NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun blames the weather for January's (and February's expected poor results) on the unusual winter of storms, which have missed … (2 comments)

maine: Maine Home Sales Up 18.6% in January, Median Price Up 5.1% - 02/27/10 08:55 AM
The numbers are in for January, 484 existing single family homes were sold by real estate agents, which compares to 408 in January 2009, a gain of 18.63%.  The median price of these homes climbed to $160,000 vs. $152,250 in January 2009, a gain of 5.09%. 
Nationally the increase is only 8.6% for the same period and a slight decrease in median sales price to 163,600.  In the Northeast, sales increased 22.4% and the median price reached $245,300, a gain of 8.8 percent.  Maine is doing better than the nation, but not as well as the rest of the Northeast.
In … (0 comments)

maine: Zillow’s Quarterly Survey Shows Homeowner’s Perceptions Are Catching Up to Reality - 02/19/10 02:35 AM

Twenty percent of homeowners believed their home increased in value, although Zillow reports that 28 percent actually did.  Half of homeowners believe their own homes lost value during 2009, while 30 percent believed their homes' values stayed the same. In reality, according to Zillow, 65 percent of homes lost value during the year, and values remained the same for 7 percent.
Zillow's "Misperception Index" nationally comes in a -2 (0 shows when perceptions are in line with reality).  However the Misperception in New England comes in at 14 percent.  Unfortunately Zillow does not measure the Portland, Maine market yet.
However, homeowners … (0 comments)

maine: The Numbers - Maine Single Family Existing Home Sales in 2009 - 01/25/10 03:06 PM
So how did we do?  Not bad, the number of sales was up 10,486 vs. 9502 in 2008, a 10 percent increase.   The median price of these homes fell to 164,000 vs. 180,000 in 2008, a drop of nearly 9 percent.  In Cumberland County, the increase in units was just over 9 percent and the median price dropped about 6 percent to 220,000.
Nationally the increase in units was 5 percent and median price drop was nearly 12 percent to $173,200.  We're selling more homes, and the prices are continuing to fall.  The first time home buyer is king and enjoying … (0 comments)

maine: FHA Maintains 3.5% Down payment for Most Borrowers - 01/21/10 03:06 AM
Good news has come out from the Federal Housing Administration.
The current 3.5% minimum down payment remains unchanged, as long as borrowers have FICO scores of 580 or above.  Under 580 and the down payment jumps to 10% of the purchase price early this summer.                                       
In April the upfront mortgage insurance premium will increase from 1.75% to 2.25%, this will add $1000 on a $200,000 loan.  The amount of seller concessions (where the seller pays the buyer's closing costs) will be reduced from a maximum of 6% to 3%.
These changes are being made to help build FHA's capital reserves … (0 comments)

maine: Go Green, Buy Appliances, Get Rebates - 01/17/10 06:13 AM
Planning on replacing your old refrigerator, washer, dehumidifier or air conditioner? 
          The Maine Utilities Commission, through its program efficiency MAINE, is currently offering their Appliance Rebate Program at selected retailers on selected Energy Star appliances.  The following rebates are available:
Washer - $50 Refrigerator over 7.5 cubic feet/Freezer - $75 Refrigerator under 7.5 cubic feet - $25 Air Conditioner/Dehumidifier - $25 Submit a copy of your receipt with the mail in form available at the retailer to get your rebate!
For more information, check out

maine: Is FHA Financing for Condos an option in 2010? - 01/12/10 02:21 PM
I've heard a lot of talk about condos being impossible to finance going forward as FHA will no longer be doing spot approvals after January 30th.  For the great majority of buyers without large down payments, FHA is your best friend.  Replacing spot approvals is an entirely new process called Direct Endorsement Lender Review and Approval Process (DELRA), another way for a lender to get individual approval on a condo without the entire association being on the list.  Sounds like business as usual, although it will save time and effort if the condo association is already approved.
Is your association … (3 comments)

maine: Maine Single Family Home Sales drop 28% from January 2007 - 02/27/08 11:44 AM
Sales of single family homes skidded to 495 in January compared with a total of 688 in the same month in 2007. These figures were released by the Maine Real Estate Information System, Inc. earlier this week.More bad news for sellers - the statewide median sales prices for those homes dropped 2.22 percent to $185,000 vs. $189,200 in January 2007. The median sales price indicates that half of the homes were sold for more and half sold for less.In Cumberland County for the quarter ending on 1/31/08, sales of single family homes dropped to 476 compared with 640 from 11/1/06 through … (4 comments)

maine: December - a tough month for Real Estate in Maine - 01/24/08 04:06 PM
Prices for single family, existing homes decreased 4.62% in December 2007 compared to December 2006.  In figures reported yesterday by MREIS (Maine Real Estate Information System, Inc.), REALTORS reported 745 sales in Maine in December 2007, compared to 971 sales during December 2006, a drop of 23.27 percent.  The median sales price for such a home was 186,000 in December, down from 195,000 in December 2006. The median sales price is defined as the figure where 50% of the homes sold for more and 50% sold for less.  It is important to note that all figures are for existing single family … (2 comments)

maine: Some good news from Maine? - 01/01/08 01:37 AM
Prices for single family, existing homes increased 1.62% in November 2007 compared to November 2006.  In figures reported yesterday by MREIS (Maine Real Estate Information System, Inc.), REALTORS reported 891 sales in Maine in November, compared to 997 sales during November 2006, a drop of 10.63 percent.  The median sales price for such a home was 188,000 in November, up from 185,000 in November 2006. The median sales price is defined as the figure where 50% of the homes sold for more and 50% sold for less.  While this might seem as bad news to some, Maine is holding up remarkably … (8 comments)

Rick Beal (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage)

Rick Beal

Portland, ME

More about me…

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

Address: 53 Baxter Boulevard, Portland, ME, 04101

Office: (207) 253-3180

Mobile: (207) 518-8637

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