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Remodeling Your Finances

There are signs pointing to an invigorated residential real estate market in spring of 2013. Whether homeowners are gearing up to list their homes on the market or not, the signals are as evident as the crocus bulbs poking their heads out of the snow-riddled ground.

While spring-cleaning is a seasonal rite of passage, this year looks to take the phenomenon a bit further. People are remodeling their homes for two possible reasons. First, by taking advantage of what may be the tail end of low interest-rate refinancing, baby boomers can retrofit their houses in advance of retirement, including enhancements to help them “age in place.”

 

Second, other homeowners may be anxious to relocate for better job prospects or have been waiting to trade up – or down – depending on age and financial situation.

 

While many of the distressed homes we’ve read about for years have hit the market and caused real estate values to bottom, they’ve also been scooped up by investors and qualified buyers. The good news is that the inventory available for sale has dried up in many parts of the country, helping raise prices.

 

[CLICK HERE to read, “Home prices continue to rise; housing is now economic bright spot,” at NPR.org, January 29, 2013.]

[CLICK HERE to read, “Homes sell in two weeks with low supply for spring buyers,” at Bloomberg, February 5, 2013.]

[CLICK HERE to read, “Asking prices up in 86 of 100 largest markets,” at Inman News, February 5, 2013.]

 

Whether or not prices will continue to rise as more houses hit the market this spring remains to be seen. One issue homeowners are dealing with is whether they can get back the money they invest in upgrades. To this end, a couple of new resources are available to help homeowners determine the cost of upgrades versus the value they’ll receive on resale. These include ZillowDigs and Remodeling Magazine’s Cost vs. Value 2013 Report.

 

[CLICK HERE to read, “Remodeling the Kitchen? Crunch the Numbers First,” at CNNMoney.com, February 8, 2013.]

 

[CLICK HERE to read, “Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report 2013,” at Remodeling Magazine, 2013.]

 

[CLICK HERE to read, “Zillow Digs Provides Home Modeling Inspiration and Cost Estimates,” at the Washington Post, February 6, 2013.]

 

Some experts caution that investing in residential real estate should be considered a place to live, not a long-term money maker. Just recently, industry expert Robert Shiller warned investors against jumping into the market for the sake of a return on their money. While he admits the two homes he owns provide diversification for his portfolio, he hastens to add he bought them because they were the houses he – and his wife – wanted to live in.

 

[CLICK HERE to read, “Shiller Sees No Major Rally in the U.S. Housing Market,” at Bloomberg.com, February 6, 2013.]

 

Ultimately – buying, selling, remodeling, staying in place, aging in place – these decisions are all as personal as our career and family choices. What works best for you may not be a good move for your neighbor. We’re happy to help evaluate your financial situation and objectives to help you make the right decisions.

By contacting us, you may be offered insurance products for sale. The links provided above are from sources believed to be reliable, but accuracy and completeness cannot be guaranteed.  They are for informational purposes only.

The information and opinions contained herein are provided by third parties and have been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but accuracy and completeness cannot be guaranteed by our firm. Content is provided for informational purposes only and is not a solicitation to buy or sell the products mentioned. The information is not intended to be used as the sole basis for financial decisions, nor should it be construed as advice designed to meet the particular needs of an individual’s situation. 

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