virginia: Get Ready — This is Not Your Usual Spring Market! - 03/23/12 12:30 AM
It’s Going To Be More Active
Spring is officially here.  Buyers and sellers are ready once again to participate in the most active home market period of the year.  Sellers have painted everything inside and out and finished mulching their garden beds.  Buyers have drafted their wish lists, review their favorite real estate websites daily (or more frequently) for new listings, and are armed with their lender pre-approval letters.
Here is a great window of opportunity.  Know that this not your normal Spring Market.  Things are different:
Buyers have been out for weeks in the warmer-than-usual weather.  Interest rates are … (3 comments)

virginia: House Prices: Where They Will Be in the Spring - 11/30/11 04:07 AM
(Reprinted from The KCM Blog, October 2011.  Disclaimer: This blog covers the national housing market as a whole. Please check with a local real estate professional to discover how the following information will impact your region. – The KCM Crew.)
Hill's Comment:  While the recent S&P/Case-Shiller Index data reflect an overall slight increase in Washington area house prices, this goes against the nationwide trends, in which residential real estate prices dropped more than forecast in the year ended September.  Prices rose and sales volume is highest in price ranges that meet the broadest market, the lower ranges.  Upper bracket properties prices are … (0 comments)

virginia: Washington, DC Market: 2010 Review and 2011 Outlook - 02/21/11 06:05 AM
Low Inventory, Stable Prices, and Feeling the Worst Is Behind Us


Market Summary
The Washington, DC real estate market had an exceptional first half of 2010 with combined sales of single-family homes, condominiums, and cooperatives up 36% at the end of the second quarter.  That pace did not continue and the increase dwindled to 3% by the end of December.
The single-family market ended the year in much stronger position than the condo/co-op market with an 11% increase sales and just over 4 months worth of inventory.  Condo/co-op sales ended with a 6% loss and over 6 months of … (0 comments)

virginia: Winter Preparations Checklist for Homes on the Market - 12/20/10 01:20 AM
Owners' Continuing Responsibility for Snow/Ice Removal
With the arrival of Winter this coming week and the surprise snowfall we had last week, it is time to complete your winter preparations, if you have not done so already.  These are particularly important if you have a home listed for sale that is vacant or you are going to be away for part of the holidays.
A Quick Checklist:
If your listed property is vacant:
Have someone lined up to shovel snow promptly: Clear snow and ice for access from the street - driveways, paths, and walks  Snow-covered and icy walks may present … (3 comments)

virginia: Washington DC: Sellers Experiencing Both Competition and Frustration - 11/09/10 03:14 AM
Third Quarter 2010 Report: Stable Prices and Lower Inventories
Market Summary
This has been a frustrating market for many buyers, sellers, and real estate professionals. Buyers in certain price ranges and neighborhoods are finding heavy competition and multiple offers on well-priced homes, while certain sellers are suffering through months on the market without an offer or serious interest. 
The third quarter statistics show a 21% decline from Q3 2009; but with the strong first half of the year, year-to-date sales are still up by 14% over 2009.  Initially it was unclear whether the expiration of the Federal Tax Credit for … (0 comments)

virginia: Whether To Buy or To Sell During the Holidays - 11/07/10 09:31 PM
"Happy Valentine's Day!"

Clients are asking, "Should I put my house on the market now, or should I wait?" and "Should I buy now, or should I wait?"  What about Thanksgiving, the Holiday season, or New Year's?  What about buyer interest and showings and open houses? Why not wait?
It's November.  Prices have stabilized.  Inventories have come down in many areas.  Interest rates are at historic lows.  Financing has become more readily available.  Sellers planning to also buy can get more house for their money now than before.  Sellers who price not only competitively but also compellingly are successfully setting … (5 comments)

virginia: THE Single Most Important Piece of Information to both Sellers and Buyers - 09/19/10 03:42 PM
Price - For a Listing and for a Contract of Sale. 
Sellers and buyers both rely on their agent's expertise and research to help them understand today's market and what are reasonable price expectations.  A wrong price can kill a listing or a deal. This single factor is so important. An agent who tries to "buy" a listing by providing or acceding to a seller's unreasonably high price expectations is not helping his client. Pricing high can negatively impact the house's real value, and can damage the agent's standing in the community. 

I spend hours on research and data analysis … (0 comments)

virginia: Picking a Real Estate Agent? - 09/19/10 03:18 PM
Seven Exceptional Attributes to Look For
Finding an excellent real estate agent or Realtor® can be a challenge. There are many to choose from and they all appear eager to help you. But how do you know which will serve your interests and help you best?  There are so many to choose from - but how do you narrow your choices?
Refine your search. Among the many qualities you want to see, consider these too::
All Realtors® are agents; not all agents are Realtors®.  There is a distinction. A Realtor® is a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the … (1 comments)

virginia: HVCC, HERA Disclosure Timeframes Slow Closing Process, Ensure Accuracy - 07/28/09 07:58 AM
To Discourage Rush Closings, Reduce Last Minute Rescues, and Cut Down Closing Table Changes
Both buyers and sellers need to be aware of the changes brought about by the HVCC (see article below) and the Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HERA), which goes into effect July 30, 2009.  HERA is intended to better inform the consumer, slow down the settlement process, and ensure more accuracy and transparency in the lending terms. 
HERA requires that a lender must provide two initial disclosures to the customer -- the Truth in Lending (TIL) statement and the Good Faith Estimate -- before the lender can … (3 comments)

virginia: FHA 203K Renovation Loans: Buy AND Renovate with One Loan! - 07/13/09 08:58 PM
Available for ANY Home at ALL Income Levels
How do you buy a house in need of repair and finance the repairs all at the same time? 
Most mortgage financing plans provide only permanent financing. That is, the lender will not usually close the loan and release the mortgage proceeds unless the condition and value of the property provide adequate loan security. When rehabilitation is involved, this means that a lender typically requires the improvements to be finished before a long-term mortgage is made.  A high cost interim loan is often used to finance repairs or renovations. Now there is an … (0 comments)

virginia: Smooth vs. Quick Settlements under HVCC - 07/13/09 05:34 AM
What the Home Valuation Code of Conduct (HVCC) Means to You
Both sellers and buyers must be aware of the Home Valuation Code of Conduct (HVCC) legislation recently enacted in response to the mortgage crisis brought on by lenders who took unacceptable risks.  This is a legislative effort to create consistent business practices among lenders and to protect consumers.  There are new timeframes regarding appraisals and underwriting, and my efforts are to ensure my clients a smooth settlement in a complex process, as we can no longer expect expedited settlement or appraisal processing.
HVCC went into effect May 1, 2009.  The … (0 comments)

virginia: Selling in a Region that is Experiencing a Challenging Market - 06/07/09 06:57 AM
You've heard it before, the three most important attributes of real estate -- 1) Location, 2) location, and 3) location.  Real estate is local.  In these economic times, some experts will tell you that in your neighborhood or general location now is not the time to sell your home.  
But selling might be the only option if you have to move for work, are selling an unused family or vacation home, or are committed to another new home elsewhere. 
Fortunately, most clients I serve in Northwest DC, Montgomery County, and Northern Virginia are seeing stabilization in prices.  But no matter … (1 comments)

virginia: HILL’S MAY 2009 REAL ESTATE UPDATE - 06/04/09 12:46 PM
Early 2009 Market Results: Increased Activity for Buyers and Sellers

We are two-thirds of the way through of the 2009 Spring Market, and we have had a roller-coaster of regional activity - some areas have popped up in sales, others suddenly are flat - on both sellers' and buyers' sides.  The news on the economy swings daily from good to bad to good.  Nevertheless, I have more successful sales transactions!
The popular price ranges of interest have dropped some 20%, and sometimes more, depending on the location.  Real estate is local.  
For my clients, the real bottom line has been … (0 comments)

virginia: FHA First-Time Buyers Can Monetize the $8000 Credit - 05/30/09 02:40 PM
Good for Closing Costs, Rate Buy Down, But Not Minimum Down Payment
The first-time homebuyer tax credit, worth up to $8,000, is available to households that haven't owned a home in at least three years.  The credit is a true credit, not a loan, and does not have to be repaid, and is fully reimbursable, so households can get their credit returned to them in the form of a payment. It was enacted last year to help encourage households to enter the housing market while interest rates are low and affordability is high.
FHA-approved lenders received the go-ahead this week to develop … (2 comments)

virginia: Short Sales, Foreclosures, and REO properties - 05/30/09 01:39 PM
Yes, we are handling more of these transactions in our office now than ever before.  I am finding myself more frequently in conversations with clients regarding the matter of foreclosures in our area.  They believe that the correction in the economy will necessarily generate more of these in the closer-in Washington Metropolitan region.  
I have access to a database that provides reliable information on foreclosure properties. This information is from a separate information source and not derived from the MLS listings.
What does this mean to you?  
If you are planning to sell, I will check if any homes in your neighborhood are in … (0 comments)

 
F. Hill Slowinski, JD,  #9 Agent in Long & Foster | Christie's (Long & Foster | Christie's International Real Estate)

F. Hill Slowinski, JD

#9 Agent in Long & Foster | Christie's

Bethesda, MD

More about me…

Long & Foster | Christie's International Real Estate

Address: 4701 Sangamore Road, Bethesda, MD, 20816

Office: 301-229-4000, #8430

Mobile: 301-452-1409

General views on the real estate environment in the Greater Washington, DC Metropolitan area: Bethesda Chevy Chase Potomac Kensington Spring Valley Wesley Heights American University Park Glover Park Cleveland Park Washington Alexandria Arlington McLean Falls Church Northern Virginia Southern Maryland www.HillSlowinski.com


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