Finally! Fall is here with cooler temps and all is in full swing with business as usual. This month we want to introduce our new “Ask Our Experts” section to our Newsletter. So much is changing in our world of real estate today, so we thought we would give you information and answers to the many questions we are asked out in the field. Each month, we will have one of our Showcase Team Experts speak to your direct questions or questions we are asked by our clients. This information will also be included on our website in our Latest News page. We will have a plethora of information for you to find answers to your questions and keep you current with what’s going on in current affairs in real estate, the equine industry and the local community.

Let our Showcase Team experts help answer your questions. Just ask!

Reflections of Today’s Real Estate Market

The Bank of Mom-and-Dad Helps More First-Time Buyers

NEW YORK – Sept. 22, 2014 – Last year, 27 percent of first-time homebuyers received a cash gift from family or friends to amass a downpayment, according to data from the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) – 24 percent more than in 2012, and the most since NAR began tracking the trend in 2009.
Lack of a downpayment was the primary reason adults continued to rent a home instead of buy one, according to a Federal Reserve report released in July on the 2013 economic well being of households.
The NAR data, meanwhile, finds that 54 percent of first-time buyers last year delayed a home purchase because the burden of student loans prevented them from saving enough for a down payment.
First-time buyers accounted for only 29 percent of resale home purchases in July, compared to about 40 percent historically. Young, new entrants to the ownership market also are contending with smaller paychecks, as well as competition from speculators armed with cash.
Those reasons contribute to the growing popularity of downpayment gifts, which will help some younger buyers, but, according to at least one analyst, widen the wealth equality gap.
“If this trend were to continue over time, I believe there would be a further distance between, for example, the homeownership rates of minorities versus non-minorities,” says Nicolas Retsinas of the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. “Minorities’ parents are probably less likely to own a home, and therefore less likely to have built up the cash reserves that would be an important component of these larger down payments.”
Source: Bloomberg (09/19/14) Jamrisko, Michelle
© Copyright 2014 INFORMATION, INC. Bethesda, MD (301) 215-4688

Local Ocala News

MLS data for August sales:

512 closed sales- an increase of 6.7% from a year ago
11.5% decrease in pending sales year over year
Average sale price – $131,625 an increase of 3.4%
An decrease of 1.2% of Active Listings
6.8 months of inventory compared to 8.2 last year

The August report is available from the Ocala Marion County Association of Realtors (OMCAR) report. Please click on the link for the full report.
If you would like to have information regarding the sale of horse farms, or agricultural land in general please contact me.

News From Around the State

Median Age of a Florida Homebuyer: 55 Years Old

ORLANDO, Fla. – Sept. 29, 2014 – The age of first-time homebuyers in Florida and the nation changed little over the 2003-2013 decade. In the Sunshine State, the median age for a first-time buyer was 31 years in 2003 and 34 years in 2013. However, the median age of all buyers – and specifically repeat homebuyers – grew over the same timeframe, according to an analysis of the most recent National Association of Realtors® (NAR) Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers by Nadia Evangelou, an NAR research economist. In 2003, the median Florida homebuyer was 35 years old, according to Evangelou. But by 2013, that age increased to 55 years old. For repeat buyers, the median age was 38 years old in 2003; by 2013, it grew to 60 years old.
“In 2011, the median age of homebuyers reached it highest value” nationally, Evangelou says in an NAR blog. The age of first-time buyers differs only a little each year, but there was “an obvious increase in the median age since 2003” for all buyers – “specifically for 2006 and beyond.”
Evangelou’s blog has three interactive maps that display each U.S. state’s median age for the three buying categories – first time buyers, repeat buyers and all buyers. A sliding scale can be adjusted to show the yearly changes from 2003 to 2013. Click on any state for more information.
© 2014 Florida Realtors®

Ask Our Experts?

Do you have unanswered questions for your Realtor?
Our Showcase Experts are here to give you professional answers and a peace of mind. 

Our Showcase Expert of the month, David Williams not only knows real estate, he has 25 years under his belt as a Property and Casualty Insurance Broker. Here’s his:

Top 5 Things You Need To Know About Home Owner’s Policy
  1. Always review your Declaration Page. It’s just as important to know what is NOT covered vs. your actual coverage terms.
  2. Sinkhole Coverage or Catastrophic Ground Cover Collapse Coverage-A big topic in the state of Florida. Depending on your property, you may want to review with an attorney for peace of mind and make sure that you have what you need.
  3. You can have 2 separate deductibles for your policy.
  4. One for Hurricane coverage and one for all other covered losses.
  5. Flood Insurance is NOT covered in your regular policy. It’s a separate policy and you may need it even if you are NOT in a designated flood zone. You may want to look into this especially since the Flood Zones are being re-evaluated.
  6. The cost of the policy is always the biggest factor. You can never have too much insurance, but you CAN be paying too much for what you do have in coverage. Remember to compare “like” coverage when shopping for insurance. And always check your insurance company’s financial rating with an institution like A. M Best Company. If you ever have a claim, you want to make sure your company can pay out and with a smooth claims process.

Have questions for our Showcase Experts?

Until Next Month

Referrals are the livelihood of our business. If you have a friend, family member, or co-worker who would benefit from the Showcase Team’s real estate services, please contact us. We promise to treat everyone with respect and the highest level of integrity and customer service. Your referrals are the greatest compliment that I, and the Showcase team can receive. I thank you for your business and recommendations!