Evansville, IN Real Estate News

By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
About this time a year ago, I was pointing out that with Evansville mortgage rates at near historic lows, the opportunities for first time home ownership had seldom been better. Although, as always, there is a lot more to a family’s decision than the cash flow dimension, it’s undeniable that those who took advantage of low mortgage rates in 1993 could look forward to spending the next 30 years making the their friends and neighbors feel like they’d missed the boat. When you are paying 6.8% for your home while yournext door neighbor -- who bought just one year later -- is struggling at 9.2% every month, it’s no wonder your car looks a lot newer. And why you’re always jetting off to exotic vacations while they check out the latest “staycation” bargains. That was what was happening a year ...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
As moving time approaches, most internal stress meters start twitching around the time we have to figure out how many cartons it’s going to take. A cross-town move is one thing -- sometimes you can even handle it yourself (with the help of bribable friends and relatives, of course).   But suppose you have just accepted a new job promotion in Evansville area. Of course, you’re immediately excited by the adventurous prospect of the summer’s relocation. But suppose ourtown is located in a new zip code – and maybe even a new state. Your move up the professional ladder could also mean spending a lot more time and money on the move itself…and once here, the demands of your new position will double your need to pay attention to business.   Fear not: yourlocal real estate agent has seen how cli...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
The housing industry recovery has been underway for a while now, but for the most part, the upward movement has been moving at a snail’s pace. Experts are in broad agreement that the trend is there -- but the turnaround rate has been tepid. For those of us watching from ourEvansville perspective, it’s been a pretty unexciting rebound.   So last week’s good national news on existing home sales was especially welcome, because the report indicated that the 5.9% increase was more than three times greater than economists expected. According to the National Association of Realtors in Washington, the index of pending home resales climbed 5.9% to 101.1. This matches the two-year high reached in March.   “This improvement adds to the recent flow of good news on the housing sector, reinforcing ou...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
Ahhhh! At the end of a busy day, who doesn’t look forward to the surge of well being that comes with closing the door behind you, finally able to relax now that the world is at bay. Whether living in apartments or homes, everyone deserves that feeling of safety and security. Yet, like most everything else, real security has to be earned.   In the area of home security, we’ve come across both good and bad news. The good: the most recent FBI report shows that the number of burglaries is decreasing across the nation. The bad: burglaries are still responsible for 23% of property crimes, and total losses for those were estimated at more than $15,000,000,000. That’s billion. Fortunately, a few very simple actions can reduce the chances that any of our Evansvillehomes will become one of those ...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
  Many eager first-time homebuyers were sidelined by the worldwide economic recession. It’s hard to commit to any decision – much less such a major one – when you read almost daily that the market is falling or downward pressure continues. Who needs any kind of pressure?   So it’s not surprising that, after such an exceptionally lengthy period of down or nearly flat economic expansion, the optimism that drives sales of all kind has been slow to reappear. But for the home buying public, and especially for first-timers, that hesitation could prove costly if, as it now seems likely, the market is entering its recovery phase. So just what does a ‘recovering market’ mean for today’s buyers?   The first sign will be a wakeup call: buyers will no longer find a market filled with purely bargain...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
When the time nears to sell your Evansville home, one extra bit of due diligence can pay off in the most meaningful way: helping you to get the best return on your investment. It’s not a requirement that every listing agent may suggest, but particularly if yours is an older home, it is one you should consider: ordering an advance inspection.       Ordering your own advance inspection, like the proverbial ‘stitch in time,’ can alert you to deferred maintenance items that might conk out just as you’re preparing a big showing. Things do have a remarkable tendency to cause trouble at the most inconvenient time. Even more likely, maintenance items that you have long accepted but which might sour a buyer will be spotlighted early. Curing them before your buyer insists upon it prevents receiv...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
When my Evansvilleclients set out to buy a home, one of the elements that has been steadily moving up their list of important considerations is energy: how much will a property cost to heat and cool?   Big, drafty houses are being edged out, replaced by green, eco-consciously-designed homes. Listings able to boast prominent cost-saving features like solar heating can provide a huge advantage to a seller. For prospects looking to buy a home in the Evansville area, the tradeoff between the higher price tag they can expect from a solar-equipped home and the anticipated long-term energy savings is tilting toward the latter.   What are the actual savings in dollars and cents? That’s the tricky part. Because every region is different (in Evansville, for instance, the number of clear, sunny da...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
  Selling your home in boom times can seem like quite a different proposition from what we have today. But Evansville real estate veterans know that there are many factors that aren’t subject to change. One of them is the basic arithmetic of residential space: bigger sells for more.   That’s where you -- if you’re an Evansville homeowner thinking about selling your home this summer or fall -- can have make a real impact. Especially if you think ‘deck’!   A backyard deck can add outsized value to any home by providing functional outdoor space – truly adding to the square footage of usable living area throughout the seasons when weather allows. The square footage on the listing may not reflect it, but when it comes to showings and open houses, prospective buyers will remember the expansi...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
Even some veteran renters are looking at today’s housing market and wondering whether it’s time to start an Evansville home search. With prices and mortgage rates as low as they are while rents continue to move higher, the numbers point to home ownership as an ever more obvious choice.   But that’s just the quick, back-of the envelope budget equation: monthly rent vs. mortgage payment less tax savings. If this June finds you at the start of your own Evansville home search, many financial advisors recommend that you also consider another rule of thumb – you should plan to stay in your new home for at least five years.   Transaction costs are only one consideration that makes this a good idea. Here are some of the others why it’s prudent to think about the 5-year planning horizon as you c...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
For some Evansville homeowners selling in today’s market, the nominal value of their property will have declined since they bought their home. According to last month’s Zillow Negative Equity Report, the property value of 15.7 million homes is lower than the amount owed on their mortgages. Additionally, in the coming months and years, 1.6 million properties are likely to hit the market as distressed properties. The downward pressure on property values will persist while the market absorbs them.   However, it’s not all bad news. Those figures represent paper losses. For the great majority of homeowners, those property values will remain purely hypothetical. And the market has shown improvement recently, with home prices creeping upward from the previous lows. Nonetheless, successful hom...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
There is no such thing as a ‘universal trend’ when it comes to residential real estate: a quick look through the current local listings will confirm that. At the highest end, the most luxurious features will always attract some homebuyers, just as in the great majority of listings, practical value prevails. But some shifts in priorities do seem to be underway, perhaps because of today’s altered selling environment. Some features that used to help sell listings in Evansville are no longer being emphasized – a sure sign that buyers aren’t asking for them. For anyone preparing a property for sale, the listings hold clues that can prevent wasting time and effort. Some formerly popular elements fading in today’s market: 1. Square footage and grandeur There was a time (and recently) when peop...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
For most of us, as soon as we feel the opening blast from the first truly hot Evansville summer day, we automatically fire up the air conditioner. While that may seem like the only way to keep our property from broiling, later -- when we open up the next electric bill – we’re reminded once more that it isn't necessarily the most efficient.   There can be longer-range benefits to battling the heat using a more energy-conscious strategy. If you later decide to put your property on the market, I find it is now common for prospective buyers to ask to see a year or two of utility bills – and you don’t want those to cool your prospects’ enthusiasm!   Here are a few ways property owners are using to keep their cool while conserving summer energy use:   1. Seal Off Your Windows   Adding sealan...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
In the Age of the Internet (that’s what we’re in the middle of, I’m pretty sure) it is widely held that everything you want to buy is merely a mouse click or two away. It’s sort of like“Alice’s Restaurant”: ‘you can get anything that you want’ – only better, because you don’t even have to ‘walk right in.’ If that were true, selling your Evansville house would be as simple as turning everything over to your listing agent, watching its picture go up on the Web, and WHOOSH!, it’s sold! Pack up and move! Of course that’s seldom the way homes get sold, and for at least one good and logical reason: Nobody wants to live inside a computer. When prospective homebuyers get serious, they leave the computer to pay a visit to the real, 3-dimensional town -- and the homes for sale here. They want to ...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
Those of us who focus professionally on our Evansville real estate trends can vouch for it: outdoor living sells! And depending on what life phase their family is in, homebuyers’ choices tend to follow similar lines. The 2012 Residential Landscape Architecture Trends Survey confirms again how important those backyard grills and dining areas are when it comes to what most people have at the top of their minds when they think about buying homes. When potential homebuyers come to me, some of the features highest on their “must have” list virtually always have something to do with outdoor space.   Young families buying homes, for example, are usually pleased to find a grassy area off the kitchen where their toddlers can toddle. High-profile clients often seek out impressive spaces with gre...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
We have all heard horror stories about what can happen when people hire the wrong contractor. “It took three times as long as it should have!” “They wound up charging me half again what they said it would cost!” “They never even called me back!”   Those kinds of tales can be enough to keep you from even considering starting any of the home improvement projects you may have been thinking about for this summer. But that doesn’t need to happen – and it shouldn’t happen: protecting and improving your real estate investment is too important to your financial future. Sometimes the difference between a successful outcome and a disappointment is as simple as getting started the right way. Just three simple steps (combined with your own good common sense) will get your own real estate improveme...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
According to the National Association of Realtors®, first quarter statistics again point to better home sales figures. This time it was the prices of single family homes that rose in half of the major cities in the United States. Because of the wide differences between regional and state conditions, these figures are never in 100% lockstep, but Evansville homeowners should be encouraged by the report’s breadth: prices rose in more than twice as many cities as fell.   Of course, rising prices are always good news for homeowners who want to sell their homes; but beyond that, the effect of movement in that direction is welcome throughout the economy. Consumer confidence is strongly influenced when home sales prices stabilize (just as it is rocked when prices fall).   There are a multiple r...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
For quite a while now, bargain hunters have been able to take their time combing through Evansville foreclosure listings. They’ve been looking for the kind of terrific real estate bargains that the last few years have provided -- and there have been plenty. But recent signs show that it may be time for them to step up their efforts. According to ReatyTrac, the outfit that reports on current real estate activity of all kinds, banks are increasingly leaning toward short sales as a way to handle defaulted properties. There are good reasons why they would prefer short sales over the foreclosure track. You would expect that if that trend is for real, we should see a decline in the number of foreclosure-related notices being issued. Last month, that is exactly what happened. In April, fewer t...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
Both hardwood and carpeted flooring can look great in any Evansville property. However, when that property is purchased by an investor whose intention is to make it a lucrative long-term rental, hardwood floors can have a real advantage over carpeting -- for both durability and enhanced aesthetic appeal.   Yes, the initial investment is definitely more expensive. But hardwood floors are extremely durable: they withstand years of the toughest use (by even the roughest of boots!). By comparison, carpets tend to rip and stain easily. With replacement costs starting in the neighborhood of $3.50 per square foot, that means their actual property management expense will usually be higher. The resulting value to present (or future) landlords can be considerable. Hardwood flooring also gives any...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
These days the words “bank owned homes” have become practically synonymous with a single word: “opportunity.” With prices and mortgage rates this low, first time home buyers, investors and seasoned property owners alike are looking at a raft of buying options unlike any our town has seen in a very long time. That option of buying a bank owned home has certainly opened a viable route for those looking to own a home at the fraction of what it cost just a few years ago. But not without a price: the best local bank owned home bargains are almost certain to fall into the ‘fixer-upper’ category. When considering the purchase of one of our Evansville bank owned homes, I’ve found that my most successful clients have a few qualities in common: -patience – they wait until they’ve found a house t...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
Though things are looking up in real estate these days, selling a home inEvansville is as demanding as ever. As in any serious business proposition, looking for ways to increase the value of your offering will always pay dividends.  One of the major ways you can make your ownhome more marketable is to do a bathroom remodel. It’s always a key focus for prospective buyers…and yes, it does sound like a lot of work (and a lot of money) -- but there are a number of ways you can cut down on both. First, step back and give a hardheaded look at the conditions a remodel would correct. In a surprising number of cases, all a bathroom really needs in order to look more glamorous and inviting is to add a fresh coat of paint or a change in lighting.  But such quick and easy fixes are not always enoug...
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