Boise Real Estate

We all have noticed that the housing market is improving.  We are finally receiving good news in the media.  Homes sales are up and Treasure Valley real estate agents are looking for more sellers to put their homes on the market to increase inventory for buyers that are ready to buy.  In addition to that, builders are seeing increased activity and building lots in certain areas are being absorbed quickly. has recently posted that Boise, ID is an “Unheralded Outperformer” in housing recovery.  To read more about Boise and the other markets that are leading the way in home sales, go to:

If you are thinking about selling your home, now might be the time to have a Realtor analyze the market for you!

KTVB wrote a great article yesterday about home values rising in Idaho.  They took information from CoreLogic who did a study nationwide comparing July 2011 home prices to July 2012 home prices.  Nationwide CoreLogic says that home values have increased 3.8%.

“Idaho home prices crept even higher than that, ending up with a 10%
increase in home prices from July of 2011 to July of 2012. CoreLogic
says Idaho is second best state for rising home values”.

This is great news!  Homeowners are happy to see the value of their homes rise.  And buyers can still get into a home at a great interest rate as we do a STEADY (hopefully) climb in the housing market.

To read the full article and look at the report by CoreLogic go to:

Idaho ranks second best in rising
home values | KTVB.COM Boise

With all the doom and gloom we have been exposed to about the housing market, it is time for some good news.  Boise recently was cited by market statistics that they are one of the top ten turnaround housing markets.  Finally something positive to report to homeowners!  Boise ranked number three in the research done by analyzing 146 metro areas in the United States.  The median home price in the Boise area increased 19.73% compared to the first quarter of last year.

Attached are links to the articles:

Inman News:

Realtor Magazine:$w1&om_mid=_BPrAyvB8i7CyqZ

This is great news for Treasure Valley homeowners!


Sales of homes in Ada County continue to climb as inventory levels dip.  Even though sales in March 2012 decreased 2.2% compared to March  2011; year to date sales are 1,353 which is 7.2% over the first three months on 2011 sales*.  Just because sales dipped a little in March doesn’t mean that contracts were not being written, pending sales in March increased 16% from February and 23% from March 2011*.

This is good news for the housing market and for sellers.  Spring is historically a busy time of year with home sales.  In fact, right now Ada County is seeing many homes get multiple offers because of the lower inventory available.  Inventory is down 3% from February and 29% from last year at this time*.

This may be the right time to look at putting your home on the market while inventory levels are low and prices are climbing.  You could potentially sell your home and still purchase your dream home at a very low mortgage interest rate before prices and interest rates climb higher.

As a buyer, now is a great time to talk to a lender and get pre-approved to purchase a home.  You can also be put on an auto-search program so you can look at homes online like a realtor.  When homes become available that you are interested in, look immediately so you don’t miss the opportunity to make an offer.

For more detailed reports on statistics in your neighborhood, talk to a reputable real estate professional.  Whether you are a buyer or a seller we can educate you on the local information that can help you make the right decision for your situation.


*Statistics taken from the March Market Report:  Ada County Association of Realtors 

Across the nation, many renters are finding that they can purchase a home at today’s low-interest rate and have a mortgage payment significantly less than what it would cost to rent a home or apartment.

The Wall Street Journal recently published an article that reported;

‘analysts at Zelman & Associates believe 2012 will be the first year since 2005 when the share of apartment renters that moves out to buy a house increases from the previous year. “The equation of renting versus owning is becoming much more favorable for owning,” said Ivy Zelman, the firm’s chief executive.’

Here is a link to the entire article:

If you are currently renting or know of someone who is renting, now is a great time to talk to a knowledgable real estate agent that can analyze current rent payments vs. mortgage payments on ‘like’ properties.  You may be able to buy for less than you rent and have the tax benefits of homeownership.

Remember, there are MANY different financing products that are available to help people become home owners so don’t wait to see if buying a home can actually save you money!


Is now the right time to sell?  That sounds like a loaded question.  In this economy some homeowners are underwater on their mortgages so selling at this time does not make sense.  However, many home owners have equity in their home and may be able to sell and take advantage of then purchasing the home of their dreams at a low price with a historically low-interest rate.

For example:  Let’s say you purchased a home for $160,000 in 2004 in NW Meridian.  This is a 3 bedroom, 2 bath home with a 3 car garage.  1700 sqft approximately.  Standard size lot.  5 years old.  No granite counters or wood floors.  Nice neighborhood.  No pool or clubhouse.  Very clean.


2004 2012 (20 yr) 2012 (30yr)
Loan Amount $128,000 $135,000 $165,000
Interest Rate 6% 3.50% 3.87%
Monthly Payment $767/mo $782/mo $775/mo
Price of Home $160,000 $170,000 $207,000

What can you get in 2012 to keep your payment the same?

$170,000 Home:   4 bedroom, 3 bath home with a 3 car garage.  2500 sqft approximately.  Standard size lot.  9 years old.  Granite tile counters, hickory floors.  Nice neighborhood with pools and clubhouse.  Very clean.

$207,000 Home:  5 bedroom, 3.5 bath home with a 4 car garage.  2800 sqft approximately.  Standard size lot.  7 years old.  No granite counters, but wood floors.  Nice neighborhood.  No pool or clubhouse.  Bank owned so needs some cleaning but no repairs.

Wow.  That sounds great – BUT…what can I sell the home I purchased for in 2004?!  The home that was used as the example above was sold for $145,000 in 2011.  Not bank owned and not short sale.

So the question becomes…Is NOW the right time for you to look at selling and buying a larger home and keep your monthly payment the same?  Is now the time to purchase a home when prices are low AND interest rates are low?

The timing may be perfect for you.

After months of discussion 49 states reached an agreement with the five largest loan servicers and will be offering as much as $25 billion to distressed borrowers and to states and the Federal Government.

This is exciting news for many homeowners that are upside down in their mortgages.  The servicers that are participating in this settlement are developing the guidelines to implement the plan to help homeowners.  The settlement is very complex so the plan is to execute it over the next three years (timeline taken off


  • Over the next 30 to 60 days, settlement negotiators will be selecting an administrator to handle the logistics of the settlement and monitor compliance.
  • Over the next six to nine months, the settlement administrator, attorneys general and the mortgage servicers will work to identify homeowners eligible for the immediate cash payments, principal reductions and refinancing. Those eligible will receive letters.
  • This settlement will be executed over the next three years.

More information about all of the details of the settlement can be found at:

What does that mean to Idahoans?  If you are upside down on your mortgage or struggling with your payment, there will be money set aside to help some homeowners re-finance, reduce loan principle and help with loan modifications.  It’s important to know that this relief may not be available immediately (see timeline).  It’s hard to say how many Idaho homeowners will get relief from this settlement.  The Idaho Statesman contacted the Attorney Generals Office and recently published this Q and A on how this would benefit Idahoans:

Most of the money will go to homeowners that are struggling to make payments and are at risk of foreclosure but have no equity so have been unable to refinance their loan.  See article above from the statesman, “For about 1 million underwater homeowners, their loan principal will be reduced by an average of $20,000.  But more than 90 percent of underwater homeowners won’t be helped.  Some, however, might be eligible to refinance at a rate of 5.25%”

You can contact your bank directly to obtain more information about implementation and requirements.

I personally have contacted two of the servicers for a client and have been told by one that they will not know how they are implementing this settlement for a minimum of 90 days.  The other servicer told me that they would be implementing the settlement in 6 to 9 months.

We definitely will be keeping our ears open and relaying any information that we possibly can.

In the meantime, read up on everything you can about this settlement to see if you would be a candidate and IF you have time to wait for the implementation of the settlement.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has directed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac  to increase the guarantee fee charged for all new mortgages financed on or after April 1, 2012. What this mean is that rates on these agency loans will start to reflect higher costs in April.  The rate increase will affect only Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac products at this time.

In addition to this increase, FHA monthly mortgage insurance premium will be going from 1.15% to 1.25% to help offset the temporary tax extension of two months.

If you are looking at homes, now is a great time to put in an offer before some of these increases are put into place.   Contact your lender today to find out how these increases can affect you.

Let me know if you need a lender name.


According to a recent article in the New York Times, having a history of paying your rent on time could help boost your credit rating and help you when you are ready to purchase a home.

Experian, one of the three leading credit reporting companies, has started using rental history incorporated into credit scores.  On-time rent payments would boost scores and bounced checks or breaking leases could potentially reduce scores.

This could be an easy way for renters to raise their credit scores and purchase a home while home prices are lower AND take advantage of the current low-interest rates.

Other credit reporting companies plan to create a new credit report and scores that add in information about rental history as well as other non traditional loans.

Some renters have struggled to show credit history because of lack of credit. Adding in rental payments could help these people.  Some people saw increases of 100 points or more.

To read the entire article visit:




In November I wrote a blog on preparing your home for sale.  It is very important to go through your home room by room and remove items that clutter the room.  Your comforts in day-to-day living, may not be the best presentation for selling your home.

How do you figure out what stays and what should go?  Start one room at a time.  Take away knick-knacks, personal photos, and bulky furniture that take up too much room.  If you are having difficulty with this, enlist the help of your REALTOR®.  They can help or they should have a resource or team member that can come over and help determine what stays and what goes.  One thing to remember is to not let it get personal.  The advice you are getting is advice to help you present your home in the best possible light and sell it at the best price in the shortest amount of time.

So what do you do if you don’t have any room to store furniture or boxes?  If you don’t have a place to store extra items that you want to save for your next house, one option is to rent a mobile storage unit.  Many companies will deliver a unit for you to load and store items in and then they will pick it up and store it until you are ready to move.  Here are a couple of companies that explain how this works:

The best part about removing clutter and extra furniture is that you have begun the long process of packing.  When you pack and store items you are not using, it makes your final pack and move that much easier.

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