Market News

Realtors® Applaud Senate Passage of 2018 WRDA Bill

WASHINGTON (October 10, 2018) – National Association of Realtors® President Elizabeth Mendenhall, a sixth-generation Realtor® from Columbia, Missouri and CEO of RE/MAX Boone Realty, issued the following statement after the Senate today voted to pass S. 3021, America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018.

“America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018 ensures the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers can continue providing vital economic and environmental services to property owners across this country. Overall, this legislation supports U.S. economic development and the real estate industry by investing in natural disaster and flood control protections; by securing clean, sustainable drinkable water for everyone in America; and by maintaining waterways and ports that help us transport goods across the country.

“The bill is particularly beneficial to Realtors® in Florida who are working to address the state’s critical infrastructure needs, specifically by funding research to combat harmful algal blooms that surfaced in the state earlier this year. NAR applauds the Senate and House for moving this legislation swiftly, and we look forward to seeing it signed into law in the coming days.”

The National Association of Realtors® is America’s largest trade association, representing 1.3 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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Spruce Up Your Listing’s Front Stoop With a Taste of Fall

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

Orange can be a great color for adding curb appeal, and it fits perfectly into the fall season too. Bright orange pumpkins and flowers can add just the color pop needed to get potential home buyers looking straight at that front door. Check out some of these photos from the remodeling site Houzz and see how designers added inviting fall curb appeal to their front stoop.

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The Concrete Craze in Home Design

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

So you don’t typically think of concrete as a decor item inside your home but something more reserved for your driveway or a home’s foundation. It can be a cold, harsh surface. So, why are so many designers now using it in the design of interior spaces?

The faux industrial look is very popular at the moment, and concrete sinks, flooring, countertops, or even a concrete accent wall fits right into that style. Polished cement countertops or even concrete soaking tubs are on-trend.

Concrete’s neutral gray can appear less harsh too when used against whites, marbles, or wood.

A perk to concrete is it’s relatively easy to maintain, durable, and eco-friendly. It can retain heat and help keep moisture out—a reason we’re seeing it surface in more bathrooms lately.

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Realtors Urge Deduction for Rental Income

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act includes a 20 percent deduction for sole proprietors and owners of S corporations and other business entities. This was designed to provide roughly the same rate cut provided to regular corporations.

It is unclear, however, whether owners of rental real estate will be able to claim the deduction.

This week, the National Association of Realtors publicly called on the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service to treat all real property rental activity as eligible for the 20 percent deduction.

Text of the letter can be found here.

It reads: “Without the change discussed above, millions of individual taxpayers who earn rental income from real property would need to wade through voluminous and confusing references to tax authority to try to determine whether they believe2 they are eligible for the deduction.”

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Pending Home Sales Dip 1.8 Percent in August

Pending home sales fell slightly in August and have now decreased on an annual basis for eight straight months, according to the National Association of Realtors®.

The Pending Home Sales Index,  a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, decreased 1.8 percent to 104.2 in August from 106.1 in July. With last month’s decline, contract signings are now down 2.3 percent year-over-year.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says that low inventory continues to contribute to the housing market slowdown. “Pending home sales continued a slow drip downward, with the fourth month over month decline in the past five months,” he said.

“Contract signings also fell backward again last month, as declines in the West negatively impacted overall activity,” he said. “The greatest decline occurred in the West region where prices have shot up significantly, which clearly indicates that affordability is hindering buyers and those affordability issues come from lack of inventory, particularly in moderate price points.”

According to the third quarter Housing Opportunities and Market Experience (HOME) survey, a record high number of Americans believe now is a good time to sell. “Just a couple of years ago about 55 percent of consumers indicated it was a good time to sell; that figure has climbed close to 77 percent today.”

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Realtors® Recognize National Voter Registration Day

With just six weeks remaining until the 2018 midterm election, today marks National Voter Registration Day in America.

This morning, National Association of Realtors® President Elizabeth Mendenhall, a sixth-generation Realtor® from Columbia, Missouri and CEO of RE/MAX Boone Realty, called on America’s 1.3 million Realtors® to ensure they are registered to vote this November.

“An astounding 74 percent of Realtors® cast a vote in the 2016 national election,” Mendenhall said. “While that number certainly outpaces that of the general population, it is critical that the voices of even more Realtors® and consumers who care about home ownership and real estate investment are heard this Election Day.”

Mendenhall went on to stress the need for NAR to take advantage of its vast membership in order to continue positively influencing policies across the country.

“Improving upon the 85 percent of Realtors® currently registered could add nearly 200,000 voters to rolls across the country,” NAR’s President continued. “That would nearly guarantee the issues that matter most to the real estate industry remain a priority for America’s lawmakers.

In accordance with National Voter Registration Day, NAR is contacting hundreds of thousands of its members directly through social media channels and text message subscriptions to remind people to register to vote. NAR is also encouraging members to visit realtorparty.realtor/vote2018 to find information on registration and other important voter resources.

Currently, 84.98 percent of Realtors® are registered to vote this November. That comes as 74.37% of NAR’s members voted in the 2016 election, compared to the national average of 55.82%.

“On September 25, NAR is urging all of our members – and every eligible adult in America – to ensure they are registered to vote this November,” Mendenhall concluded.

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Hot Home Trend: Color Block Your Kitchen Cabinets

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

Getting a little mismatchy in kitchen cabinet color designs is no longer being viewed as an unfinished reno job, but instead perfectly stylish in fitting with today’s trends. These “tuxedo kitchens,” as they’re nicknamed, are where the upper cabinets may be in one color—like in all white—and then the lower cabinets are in a contrasting shade, like a gray or dark walnut. It’s essentially a way to color block your cabinets.

The idea of going with two different shades on your kitchen cabinets may make some homeowners’ a little uneasy, but it’s nothing to fear nowadays and can actually make your kitchen look more open.

Typically, with tuxedo cabinets, the lighter color is on top and a darker color is on the bottom. It can help make a kitchen seem taller when the lighter color is above. It can also create a focal point, when a contrasting color is used on a kitchen island. And the differing shades can also break up the monotony of all one color cabinets, particularly in all-white kitchens.

Some real estate studies are suggesting that white cabinets contrasted by a dark navy blue or black kitchen island is among the most common tuxedo kitchen pairings in some real estate listings too.

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The (Near) Future of Smart Home Tech

By Brianna Barcena Using a handheld device like it’s a magic wand to instantly control the temperature, lighting, security and overall atmosphere of your home is no longer the starry-eyed stuff of science fiction. Thanks to advances in artificial intelligence (AI), mobile technology and the accelerating growth of the Internet of Things (IoT), beefing up […]

The post The (Near) Future of Smart Home Tech appeared first on RISMedia’s Housecall.

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Find Out the New, Hot Home Color for 2019

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR(R) Magazine

Photo credit: Behr

The paint company Behr has named a rich, bluish hue its 2019 Color of the Year. Blueprint is a mid-tone blue that is described as warmer than denim but softer than navy.

Behr is predicting that embracing a full range of blue, teal,and gray will be a key style for home design in 2019. “Layer light and dark blues on walls, cabinets, furniture, and decor for impactful results,” Behr says.

The color matches with the jewel tone trend that has been taking off in 2018, which also has seen the popularity of dark greens and purples in decor.

Blueprint is a dark color but can also be a classic that can be mixed with many color combos and in different home styles too, the company notes. The color can work as an accent wall color, on kitchen cabinets, in home accessories, bedding or blankets, or furnishings.

Gray will remain a hot neutral in 2019, but color forecasters believe that as warmer tones in taupe and terra-cotta rise in popularity, earthy blues and brown combinations will grow too.

Also, Behr predicts that powder blue, blush peach, and tinted lilac will emerge as new neutrals in the new year as well. These colors  create “relaxed and expansive spaces,” the company says. “Matte finishes emphasize softness, while metal accents add glamour.”

Photo credit: Behr

Photo credit: Behr

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Realtors Release 2018 Member Safety Report

As a part of Realtor® Safety Month, the National Association of Realtors® released its 2018 Member Safety Report, which surveyed over 3,000 Realtors®, members of the National Association of Realtors®, about how safe they feel while on the job, their personal safety experiences and the safety procedures they follow.

The report found that nearly a third of Realtors®experienced a situation that made them fear for their personal safety or the safety of their personal information, and that 43 percent of Realtors® choose to carry self-defense weapons.

“Realtors® understand better than anyone the safety risks associated with real estate transactions. Because of that,it is imperative for members to share safety protocols with home buyers so they can learn about what they may encounter during the home buying process,” said NAR CEO Bob Goldberg.

The most common circumstances that resulted in fearful situations were open houses, showing vacant and model homes, working with properties that were unlocked or unsecured and showing homes in remote areas.

Click here to read the full report.

https://www.nar.realtor/2018-member-safety-report

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