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Salt Lake County Real Estate Dynamics for March 2011

by Cindy Wood

Below are the Salt Lake City Real Estate Dynamics for last month!  We're excited to provide this for you each month so you can stay up to date on the Salt Lake City Real Estate market.  Wondering if now is a good time to buy or sell?  We'd be happy to talk with you about these statistics!

There are 6498 residential homes listed “For Sale” in the Salt Lake County market.
In the last 30 days 770 homes sold.
That’s a 8 month supply of homes if no other homes come on the market.
During the last 30 days 1606 additional homes came on the market.

855 of these homes are priced above $400,000.
During the last 30 days 60 of these homes sold.
That’s a 14 month supply in this price range if no others come on the market.
During the last 30 days 206 additional homes in this price range were listed.

1398 of these homes are priced at $250,000 to $400,000.
During the last 30 days 148 of these homes sold.
That’s a 9 month supply in this price range if no others come on the market.
During the last 30 days 364 additional homes in this price range were listed.

2364 of these homes are priced at $150,000 to $250,000.
During the last 30 days 313 of these homes sold.
That’s a 7.5 month supply in this price range if no others come on the market.
During the last 30 days 594 additional homes in this price range were listed.

1944 of these homes are priced under $150,000.
During the last 30 days 255 of these homes sold.
That’s a 8 month supply in this price range if no others come on the market.
During the last 30 days 457 additional homes in this price range were listed.

Housing sales remain “stagnant” as inventory increases continue to outpace sales. The hypercompetitive Buyer’s market marches on, with incredible competition between homes “For Sale.”  Price, condition and location remain paramount, with PRICE being the most critical factor in getting showings and sales.

The good news!... Between 750-800 homes are selling each month. Yours can be one of them! Are you willing to price your home competitively in order to get it SOLD?

Feel free to contact me anytime with any questions you may have about the Salt Lake County Real Estate market!

Cindy Wood
Salt Lake City Real Estate Expert

Salt Lake City Real Estate
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Go Green in Salt Lake City!

by Cindy Wood

Living in Salt Lake City means being involved in a very environmentally friendly community!  With the anticipation of Earth Day just around the corner on April 22nd; I thought it’d be appropriate to share the ways that Salt Lake City works to preserve our environment all year round!  

In fact, Salt Lake City was founded by those who cared for our earth long before it was a “trend.”  Believe it or not, when the first settlers embarked on Salt Lake County, the valley barely had any trees!  The settlers understood the importance of trees, not just for their aesthetic appeal, but for enriching the soil and providing a healthy atmosphere.  Salt Lake City residents have carried on their passion for the environment and, out of that desire; there are many ways to get involved with the communities efforts to continue towards a green city.

Below are just a few of the organizations throughout Salt Lake City in which you can get involved!  Visit their websites to learn more about their programs and green efforts.


Salt Lake City Green
City & County Building
451 South State, Room 145, Salt Lake City
www.slcgov.com/slcgreen
-Salt Lake City Green is comprised of award-winning environmental programs that continue to help us conserve resources, reduce pollution, slow climate change and ensure a healthy, sustainable future for Salt Lake City.

Salt Lake County Green
Mayor’s Office
2001 South State Street, Suite N2100, Salt Lake City
www.green.slco.org/index.html
-Salt Lake County (SLCo) is working to reduce air pollutant emissions, increase energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy in our facilities, and create a more sustainable environment.

Are you also looking for ways to make your Salt Lake City home more eco-friendly?  Changing a few of your habits, and making a few small updates in your home can do wonders for the environment, as well as help you save money on your energy bills! 

6 tips for going green in your Salt Lake City home!

1. Set the Timer- Set your thermostat to lower temperatures while you’re away from your Salt Lake City home or while you’re sleeping. This will automatically help reduce energy used as well as costs just by programming your thermostat.

2. Let the Sunshine In- During the day, be sure to leave blinds and curtains open to let in the sunlight and natural heat. At night, shut them to help “trap” the warmth.

3. Stop Leaks- Check all doors and windows for drafts. You can easily seal windows and doors to prevent the warm air from your Salt Lake City home escaping while making sure the cool air doesn’t leak in.  In the summer, it will also prevent your air conditioner from working twice as hard.

4. Add a Layer- Feeling chilled? Instead of turning up the thermostat, throw on a pair of socks or an extra layer. These small choices to not turn up the heat can really add up in energy savings!

5. Switch out Your Lights
- From lamps to porch lights, all of your lights can be changed out for energy efficient LED lights! This change will add up to financial and energy savings!

6. Unplug- Not using an appliance? Unplug it! The Department of Energy notes that, even if appliances are not being used, they are still using energy. 40% of electricity used for your home electronics is used when they’re turned off, but still plugged in. Getting in the habit of unplugging will prove to be a smart habit in the long run!

Hopefully these tips will spark even more ideas of how you can help Salt Lake City create an environment that allows us to breathe deeply, experience a cleaner city and provides a better future for generations to come.

If you aren’t currently living in Salt Lake City, but are interested in moving to the area; please let me know!  As a Salt Lake City Real Estate agent, I have years of experience in assisting people through every step of the home buying process.  I enjoy helping other discover the great lifestyle and beautiful homes that Salt Lake City has to offer

Please feel free to contact me today!  I look forward to hearing from you!

Cindy Wood
Salt Lake City Real Estate Expert

Salt Lake City Real Estate
View Salt Lake City Listings
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4 Tips for Getting a Home Loan in Salt Lake City Home!

by Cindy Wood

As the Salt Lake City Real Estate market begins to become even livelier with the busy spring season; you may feel that now is the ideal time to buy a Salt Lake City home!  Whether you’ve been renting in Salt Lake City or plan to relocate to the area; you’ll find that this vibrant town offers a great lifestyle and many beautiful homes from which to choose.  If you’ve started researching the current housing market; you may have seen reports regarding the new regulations for qualifying for a home loan.

Before becoming discouraged about the entire home buying process; know that, although it may be harder to qualify for a home loan, it’s not impossible!  Lenders have tightened the reins on who is able to qualify for a home loan because of the strain of the past few years.  They feel that having a better handle on who is buying a home will cut down on the number of distressed properties in the future.

Qualifying for a home loan may just take a little extra work prior to applying, but that time will be well worth it in the long run.  Below are four tips to help with the process of qualifying for a home loan.  After all, you want to make sure to get approved as soon as possible to ensure you are able to get in on the Salt Lake City homes that are fresh on the market!

1. Budget Wisely- To make sure that you're not borrowing beyond your means, it's a good idea to follow the Federal Housing Administration guideline.  The FHA determines what 31% of your gross monthly income and will not let you borrow more than that for a home loan.  Being wise with your budget and not stretching yourself too thin will make it easier on you in the long run.

2. Build up Your Credit Scores- Lenders are now expecting a credit score of 600+ even for FHA loans. Having a good credit score is imperative in being approved for a  Salt Lake City home loan.  Taking time to build up your credit scores will result in lower payments each month as the interest rate will be lower. 

3. Determine Your Best Option- There are many other factors such as the type of loan and discount points that will play a role.  If you're not sure of where to begin or what your options are your Salt Lake City Real Estate agent can answer your questions and be a great resource for you.

4.  No-Closing-Cost Loan May Be an Option- Being able to choose a no-closing cost loan means having positive equity, but not having as much cash up front.  If you go with a no-closing cost loan, you'll have a higher rate because you'll be paying the closing costs over time instead of at the time of closing on your new home.

I hope these tips are helpful as you begin the process of qualifying for a home loan!  If you have any additional questions about qualifying for a loan; please let me know and I’d be happy to answer your questions!  Or, if you’ve already qualified and are ready to begin your Salt Lake City home search; I would enjoy the opportunity to help!  My goal is to not just help my clients find a house, but to walk with them through the entire process and make sure they find a place that feels like home.  Feel free to contact me today to get started!

Cindy Wood
Salt Lake City Real Estate Expert

Salt Lake City Real Estate
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Experience All That Salt Lake City Has To Offer!

by Cindy Wood

As a Salt Lake City Real Estate agent; I enjoy giving buyers a holistic view of life in Salt Lake City.  For those who are not from the area, it oftentimes comes as a surprise to them of how much Salt Lake City truly has to offer!  Not only are there fantastic neighborhoods with beautiful homes, but the city itself is a vibrant and growing atmosphere that provides options for everyone.

My goal is to not just provide you with Salt Lake City Real Estate market information, although it’s important, but to help you discover the city in which you’ll be living.  I’ve gathered together a few highlights of the downtown area of Salt Lake City, but of course there’s so much more to discover!  These will help get you started as you familiarize yourself with the place you’ll soon be calling “home.”  For those of you who do currently live in the Salt Lake City area, I recommend taking the time to re-discover your city as there’s always something new!

Arts and Entertainment

Utah Jazz
301 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City
- You’ll enjoy catching the game right in your own backyard!  The Utah Jazz brings a unique sense of excitement to Salt Lake’s downtown!  Don’t miss the chance to cheer on your team in person!

Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center
138 West 300 South, Salt Lake City
- The Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center is Salt Lake County’s most versatile performance venues. With its three theatres, permanent art installations, and rotating art gallery, The Rose is a vital hub for Salt Lake’s emerging and established artists and performing arts companies.

Utah Opera
123 W South Temple, Salt Lake City
- The Utah Opera is committed to giving great performances which engage, educate, and enrich lives. Since 1978, Utah Opera has cultivated and entertained a growing audience of more than 150,000 annually around the intermountain area. They produce opera with artistic standards of distinction and with a fresh vibrancy - new works for our area as well as the classics.

Clark Planetarium & IMAX 3D Theatre
110 South 400 West at The Gateway, Salt Lake City
- Clark Planetarium is one of the world’s leading centers for space and science education. Its mission is to create and present enlightening information that inspires wonder and learning about space and science. Unique events, movies in 3D at the IMAX and the opportunity to rent out the facilities make the Clark Planetarium a fun and exciting highlight of Salt Lake City!

Places to Eat


Market Street Oyster Bar

54 W. Market Street, Salt Lake City
- Since 1980, the Grill-Downtown, rated Salt Lake’s finest seafood restaurant, has been the unanimous favorite of locals and visitors from around the world.

Bambara
202 S. Main Street, Salt Lake City
- Bambara, recently named Salt Lake City's Best Restaurant, is an approachable New American bistro and is one of downtown Salt Lake's liveliest restaurants.

Caffe Molise
55 West 100 South
Salt Lake City
- Caffé Molise is a full service restaurant featuring fresh Italian cuisine inspired by the Molise region of Italy.  Enjoy dinner surrounded by local art in the dining room or choose a table on our delightful garden patio.

Vasuvios Organic Gourmet Cafe
155 South Main St., Salt Lake City
Vasuvio’s mission is to provide you with a unique clean, healthy eating establishment that is convenient, comfortable and earth friendly. The food is prepared from the finest ingredients available. They also  give back to the community through service and by donating 5% of our net Revenue to nonprofit charities.

Of course this is merely scratching the surface of all that is offered in downtown Salt Lake City.  There are endless events, museums, galleries, places to eat and much more!  Please feel free to visit the Downtown Salt Lake City Alliance website to view more of what makes Salt Lake City a great place to live!

If you have been considering a move to the Salt Lake City area; please let me know!  I’d be happy to answer any questions you may have about Salt Lake City, its real estate market, as well as show you homes that are currently available in Salt Lake City.  Feel free to contact me anytime to get started.  I look forward to hearing from you!

Cindy Wood
Salt Lake City Real Estate Expert

Salt Lake City Real Estate
View Salt Lake City Listings
Visit Our Website

Contact Me

Counting the Costs of Owning a Home in Salt Lake City

by Cindy Wood

Salt Lake City is a great place to call home for a wide variety of reasons.  Its stunning views, vibrant downtown atmosphere, family friendly neighborhoods and an endless list of things to do are some of the reasons many choose to buy a home in Salt Lake City and the surrounding areas.  Residents will attest that living in Salt Lake City has, not only provided them with a great lifestyle, but has been a smart financial decision.  

The housing market is continuing on its path to full recovery and many are beginning to see that buying a home is not something to fear, but will bring about a solid return on investment.  If you’re a first time home buyer, this can all seem overwhelming with the amount of details and paperwork that goes into buying a home.  As a Salt Lake City Real Estate agent, my goal is to provide information that will help guide people through the Salt Lake City Real Estate market.  

As a first time homebuyer, the thing that seems to come to the forefront quickly are all of the additional costs of owning a home.  Oftentimes buyers focus on the selling price for a home, yet don’t take into consideration the extra expenses.  Below is a quick guide to the costs that are likely to play into buying a home in Salt Lake City.

Property Taxes- Your taxes are typically generated from the assessed value of your home, which is different from the number you’re used to seeing in the appraised value.  Taxes can add hundreds of dollars onto your monthly payment, so be sure you know the final amount before you sign on a Salt Lake City home.

Insurance- Insurance is vital in the home buying process.  Not only will a deal not go through without it, but you want to be sure to shop around for the best option.  The home insurance covers the basics of theft and fire, but does not cover flood damage which is something you may want to consider if your home is on a lower plane.  Consider joining your home insurance with your car insurance for an even better deal.

Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)- You may be required to pay the bill for PMI if your down payment is less than 20% of the home value.  Private mortgage insurance is important as it protects the lender again defaulting on your loan, but is not required. The monthly payment will depend on the size of your loan.

Utilities- First time home buyers are often struck by the difference from apartment utilities to home utilities.  You can request an average of what utilities for the house you are looking at typically cost, but you’ll want to be prepared for the increase.  Of course, there are eco-friendly ways to cut down on the cost of your utility bill that are worth pursuing!

Homeowner's Association Fees- HOA fees typically only apply in a condo community, but can also be found in some subdivisions so you’ll want to be sure to ask about those upfront.  These fees are paid on a monthly or yearly basis depending on the development, but oftentimes include many perks that you’ll enjoy such as snow removal, or a gym membership!

Maintenance- While your favored Salt Lake City home may look perfect on the surface; you’ll want to be prepared for the home inspection results.  There can be hidden problems that can demand attention right when you move in.  You can talk with your Salt Lake City Real Estate agent about factoring the home inspection and any major repairs into the final home price.  Being prepared for regular home maintenance is also crucial.  Again, if you’re moving from an apartment, this is something you may not be used to; so having a realistic view of a home and the maintenance that is required will help you prepare for the additional costs.

Buying a home is a large decision, but being prepared for extra expenses and knowing what to expect in the home buying process will make things run more smoothly.  If you have questions about buying a home in Salt Lake City, or are still looking for a Salt Lake City Real Estate agent; please let me know!  I would enjoy the opportunity to talk about the current Salt Lake City Real Estate market and answer your questions.  I can help you walk through each step of the home buying process with ease, so feel free to contact me today to get started! 

Cindy Wood
Salt Lake City Real Estate Expert

Salt Lake City Real Estate
View Salt Lake City Listings
Visit Our Website

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Top 9 Ways to Streamline the Salt Lake City Home Buying Process!

by Cindy Wood

If you’ve been waiting for warmer weather and the spring real estate market to buy a home in Salt Lake City; you’re not alone!  Many tend to take the cold winter months to focus on the holidays and staying warm in their current homes.  Yet, as we make our way through February,  the Salt Lake City Real Estate market begins to stir from its’ slower season. We’ll begin to see new homes budding onto the market and homes being picked from the market just as quickly!

Whether you’re already a resident of Salt Lake City and the surrounding areas, or you’re planning on relocating to this great city within the coming months; there are a few ways to get a jump start on the Salt Lake City home buying process.  As spring approaches, the competition for finding that ideal home in Salt Lake City will increase and you don’t want to miss out on a great deal.  Being prepared is key to home buying success.  Below are nine ways that you can streamline buying a home in Salt Lake City to ensure you stay ahead of other buyers and find the home that best fits your needs and lifestyle!


1.  Start Your Search Online- Instead of spending your time perusing neighborhoods for open houses or for sale signs, get online to streamline your search.  There are many beautiful homes available in Salt Lake City which you can view online.

2.  Get Pre-Approved- Finding the home of your dreams and then shopping for a loan is a risky move, as most home sellers won't even look at an offer that's not accompanied by a pre-approval letter.  Getting pre-approved ensures you know your exact budget and can save you from a bidding war if many are vying for the same home.

3.  Look for Motivated Sellers
- Don’t settle for sellers who aren’t willing to budge on a home at the top of your price range; there are too many other great Salt Lake City homes out there that will have motivated sellers.

4.  Prioritize Your Housing Needs- Finding a home fast means being flexible.  The longer the list of requirements, the harder it will be to find a home.  Keep your list short and to the point.  Focus on the key elements you’re looking for and let the extras fall as they may.

5.  Find a Great Agent- This may seem easy, but finding an agent that truly knows the Salt Lake City Real Esate market, and can show your properties that are right in your price range and meet your style and needs can be challenging.  Of course, I’d love to help you in your home search and know that my experience and proven success will make the home buying process an easy one, but my point is to do your homework and really research local agents.  

6.  Steer Clear of Short Sales
- While short sales seem to be flooding the market across the country; if you’re looking for a quick buy, short sales are not the way to go.  There is a long process involved with these homes and complications are almost always in the cards.

7.  Negotiate Repairs- If an inspection reveals that the home you want to buy requires repairs, taking the responsibility off the seller can help you close the deal quicker. After obtaining estimates, ask the seller for a credit rather than asking them to complete the repairs themselves.

8.  Have Cash Ready for Closing- You don't want to be scrambling for funds at the last minute, so be prepared for this important date. A day or two before closing on your Salt Lake City home, you'll get the final settlement statement, detailing the terms of your loan and all the closing costs. Be sure to get a certified or cashier's check made out for the total amount you owe at closing, including the down payment since you can’t use a personal check.

9.  Have a Plan B- Because not every transaction goes smoothly, be sure you have a property or two as a backup; you don’t want to have to start from scratch!


I hope these tips are helpful as you begin your Salt Lake City home search!  If you have any questions about the Salt Lake City Real Estate market; please let me know!  As a Salt Lake City Real Estate agent, I’m very familiar with the area and the homes that are available and would be happy to help you each step of the way!

 

Cindy Wood
Salt Lake City Real Estate Expert

Salt Lake City Real Estate
View Salt Lake City Listings
Visit Our Website

Contact Me

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