Burlington Vermont Real Estate

Is it a good time to buy real estate in Vermont?

The recent economic "meltdown" has effected the housing market in various ways in the last few years. We can't seem to escape the constantflow of bad news coming from our televisions every night on the evening news, can we? Today we'll explore why it's a great time to buy real estate in Vermont, and the Burlington and surrounding areas of Chittenden county, specifically. The first thing I always remind buyers and sellers is this; Vermont real estate, like politics is first and foremost LOCAL. What's happening in Miami, Las Vegas, or Southern California doesn't really affect us up here in Vermont. Here are some major reasons why:
  1. Vermont did not experience the "Boom" those other areas experienced, and we hence have not experienced the "Valley" either. Vermont's home values, even in the growing of the housing boom, staying fairly level. Vermont has laws that prevent speculative buying, and our building community to did not over-build the available inventory to sell. This has helped maintain home values in Vermont and the more localized areas of Burlington, South Burlington, Williston, Essex, Charlotte, Colchester, and Shelburne.
  2. The current national unemployment level is hovering at around 9%. The unemployment level in Vermont, and more precisely Chittenden County, is nearly 1/2 that amount. The bottom line is that jobs in Vermont have not been nearly as affected as they have in other parts of the country. Employers like UVM, IBM, and Fletcher Allen Health Care have a long employment record in and around Burlinton. There's no reason to believe they'll go anywhere in the time-being, either. If jobs are the key to the economic recovery, and an improved housing market- we're already where we need to be.
  3. Mortgage rates remaining remarkably low. In fact, you can STILL qualify for a low rate of 4.9% for a 30 year fixed rate. This low rate, coupled with the relatively flat but somewhat lower prices than what we have seen in recent years means that homes in Vermont are more affordable than ever. See the link here to a recent Vermont affordable housing study: http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/article/20110315/NEWS01/103150303/Study-Vermont-housing-more-affordable
Simply put, it's a great time to buy- and there are plenty of great homes to chose from. Contact Brad or begin your home search today!

Making Buying a Home a Reality with FHA Loans

Have you thought about buying a home, but think the possibility is just too far out of reach?

Do you think the only way you own your own home is with 20% down? If you have thought this, don't worry, many people have. In fact, there is a general misconception that owning a "piece of the American dream" is simply out of reach for many Americans. Not true! With an FHA loan, you too can qualify for the purchase of a home...now!

What is an FHA Loan?

FHA is the Federal Housing Administration, which is a member of HUD. Essentially, an FHA loan is a federally insured loan, so your local lender can offer you a great deal on a loan. There is minimal risk for the lender.

So what does this mean for me?

Well, first it means that you may qualify for a low down payment- 3.5% of the purchase price in fact! Also, most of your closing costs (attorney fees, mortgage origination fees, etc) can even be rolled into your loan, so you will need even LESS money at closing. This is one of the reasons that makes FHA loans so attractive to most home buyers with little cash on hand.

So What's the Catch?

Really- nothing in particular, however there are two specific things worth mentioning:

  • There are limits on the value of the home you can purchase. In Chittenden County of Vermont, for example the limit for a single family home is $318,750.
  • You will have to qualify for the loan, just like any other "traditional" loan out there. As long as you have had a steady job and a good credit score, you should have a good opportunity of qualifying for an FHA loan.

The fact is, the FHA program is a great program for people looking to purchase, although they may not have the typical 10-20% down payment available. You can qualify for a very low 3.5% down payment, and be in the home of your dreams earning equity instead of paying rent. For more information on the FHA program, visit: https://www.hud.gov/offices/hsg/fhahistory.cfm Contact Brad Dousevicz of Dousevicz Real Estate for more information, or to discuss your options- 802-238-9367

VT Market Activity Report - Downtown Burlington Condominiums, Homes in Essex and Essex Junction

Every time I meet with a buyer or seller of Real Estate in the local Burlington, Vermont area, I start my conversation with a brief snapshot of what is happening in the marketplace. The market isconstantly evolving, and any agent you work with should evaluate the market constantly, whether it be to price your home to sell in the least amount of time or to get the best price for a condo or home you will be purchasing. A down market is perhaps the most important time to do your research! That is why I will explore two major marketplaces today:

  • The Downtown Burlington Condominium marketplace, for the months of August-October, 2010
  • The Single Family home market place of Essex and Essex Junction of August-October, 2010

The Downtown Burlington Condominium Market

Today I will examine the downtown Burlington "Luxury" condominium market for the last few months. Typically, these are the higher priced condos in the $300,000- $1,000,000 range. To be honest, $1M sales only happen in the Burlington downtown condo market 1-2 times per year- there simply is not that great of a supply of such units that come on the market. In fact, the average sales price for condominium in the greater Burlington area for the above mentioned range for both August and Sept were $385,600 and $406,667- respectively. The average number sold for the months were: 4 in August and 3 in September. October is not over, although we have already seen 3 sales in this particular price range. The average days on the market for condos in the greater Burlington area were:

  • 71 for August
  • 120 for September
  • 98 (thus far) for October

When we compare this to the average days on themarket for similar priced homes in other parts of Chittenden County including single family homes in Charlotte, Shelburne, South Burlington, Essex, and Burlingtonpriced at the same levels, we see very similar average days on the market- 76, 116, and 101. This tells us that the Burlington luxury condominium market is performing as well as the rest of similarly priced homes in the area, albeit it is a significantly smaller segment of the market as a whole.

The Single Family Home Market in Essex

The single family home market in the greater Essex marketplace for homes priced from $300,000-$700,000 is similar inquantity of homes sold, days on the market, and average price sold as our segment just explored- the downtown Burlington Condominium Marketplace. For the number of homes sold, Essex had the following activity:

  • August- 4, with an average sales price of $385,600
  • September- 3, with an average sales price of $406,667
  • October- 3 (thus far), with an average sales price of $309,500

Average days on the market for August, September, and October were all averaging less than 110 days. This also tells us that the market in Essex is not a anomoly- it is performing as well as the greater Chittenden County Market, and lines up with even a very different market- the Luxury Burlington Condominium marketplace as well. For more information, or to explore your options, contact Brad Dousevicz at 802-879-4477 today.