Your Weekly Jacksonville NC Real Estate E-Zine
March 3, 2010
In this Issue:
Walter’s World – Keller Williams is Jacksonville’s #1 Real Estate Office
Special Report: Existing home sales down in January
Featured Article: Lessons from the Forbes 400
Recommendations & Resources: Could you wait to file your tax return?
Keller Williams Realty is Jacksonville NC #1 Real Estate Office
Keller Williams Realty officially arrived in Jacksonville NC as a market center the middle of December 2009 and moved into our permanent location, 3840 Henderson Drive, on February 8th, 2010.
Even with the moving and growing pains of a new office and Market Center, we have bolted to the top of the real estate office rankings as the #1 office in Jacksonville NC market. As we move into the month of March, we have closed 66.5 units with sales volume of $10,553,260, which is #1 in both categories.
We will also be participating in the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce’s Business Expo this Saturday, March 6. Come by and meet us at our booth. The Business Expo starts at 10am and lasts until 4pm.
Visit my website and find your Dream Home – take advantage of the Federal Tax Credits for 1st Time Homebuyers – either $8,000 or $6,500 depending on what you qualify for, but you must have a contract on a home by April 30, 2010. For details, call (910) 340-5524.
Existing Home Sales Down in January
The National Association of Realtors last week released sales figures for January, revealing that the number of existing homes sold dropped 7.2 percent from December but were still up more than 11 percent from January of 2008.
Lawrence Yun, the NAR’s chief economist, offered that buyers who started shopping after the tax credit was extended in November are still in the market, having probably not closed transactions they’re expected to close.
That, combined with a shrinking inventory of homes on the market and stability caused by more distressed properties coming off the market, has led to a stabilizing of prices in many areas of the country.
With the tax credit expiring and mortgage rates expected to rise, it could be a brisk spring for house sales, Yun said.
“Activity should be picking up strongly in late spring as buyers take advantage of the tax credit, which is critical to absorb distressed properties reaching the market and to continually chip away at inventory,” Yun said in an NAR news release. “With a downtrend in the number of homes on the market, especially in the lower price ranges, values are beginning to firm but with great variance around the country.”
That makes now a good time to be in the market to buy, and will likely help sellers as spring rolls around.
Lessons from the Forbes 400
If you’ve spent any time studying wealthy people, perhaps you pay attention to the Forbes magazine list of the 400 wealthiest Americans when it comes out.
In 2009, the 400 were a bit lighter in the wallet than they were the year before. In 2008, it took a net worth of $1.3 billion to make the famous list. A year later, it took “only” $950 million. The recession has affected the wealthy, too.
An interesting piece on Forbes.com that went with the list when it was released in the fall says that the best way to eventually make the list is to own your own business. Of the wealthiest 400 Americans, 274 were self-made entrepreneurial types. Of the top 10 on the list, six of them made their own fortune (as opposed to having family money). The lesson to me seems clear: Own your own business.
The Forbes online article also features answers to questions on 22 different topics by eight of the self-made billionaires on the list. The topics range from their take on national health care, the state of the stock market, where they’d invest in real estate right now, their biggest investment blunder and even how much vacation is the right amount each year. The answers are interesting.
Particularly striking was R.J. Kirk’s answer to the question “Describe your life in five words.” Kirk, who made his way to billionaire in pharmaceuticals and investment management, answered:
“I decided to be happy.”
Powerful stuff. A lot of people pay attention to what we think will MAKE us happy — winning the lottery, getting a better job, living an easier life. But a look inside the thinking of a self-made billionaire shows us his different mindset. “I decided to be happy.”
Doesn’t this seem like the first step toward financial freedom, taking control of the process? And couldn’t all of us make this decision, regardless of what endeavor we’re pursuing? It’s something we should think about.
Recommendations & Resources
Could You Wait to File Your Tax Return?
This year’s tax season has been made a bit more complicated for some by the new rules for converting traditional IRAs to Roth IRAs as well as two tax credits for home buyers. A recent Wall Street Journal article says that 11 million people file their returns AFTER April 15. Here’s an informative look at whether you could benefit by filing for a tax deadline extension.
Have a great week!
Walter Whitehurst, Broker
Keller Williams Realty