It’s Okay to Buy and Sell Around the Holidays

Homes for the Holidays - Banner

Once upon a time, real estate was thought to slow down as the new year approached, giving way to hot cocoa and flurries of snow. These days, we know better, and when winter comes around, it’s also the time to buy or sell your house. So, grab your mug, sit down by a fire and find out why now is the season of homes for the holidays:

1. Twinkling with holiday lights, your house will shine bright to eager buyers looking for their perfect home.

2. Temperature isn’t the only thing dropping this winter; mortgage rates are near historic lows.

3. Homes are new beginnings for buyers and sellers. When the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve, sellers will want to start fresh and buyers will want to be all settled into their new home.

4. Tax benefits are the ultimate holiday gifts for both buyers and sellers who close before the end of the year. (See your tax advisor for more details and the best advice to take advantage of a transaction that takes place before December 31.)

5.Serious buyers are out. Your home won’t be subject to casual window shoppers, (they’re too busy at the mall or on their computer searching for holiday gifts).

6. Buyers have extra time off from work, which means more hours in their day to search for a home.

7. January is typically the month when employees are transferred to new positions. To capture these buyers, your home must be on the market now because they often can’t wait until spring.

Contact us to learn more! Or, print this information to share with a friend.

For more home tips, follow us on Facebook. Looking for a new home in the Kansas City area? Visit us at BHHSKCRealty.com!

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Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Announces Winner of its $50,000 Sweepstakes

Lawrenceburg, KY resident claims cash prize in contest held in conjunction with HGTV and hit TV show ‘Fixer Upper’

IRVINE, CA (July 8, 2015) – Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, part of the HSF Affiliates LLC family of real estate brokerage franchise networks, today announced the winner of its $50,000 Sweepstakes held during the spring in conjunction with HGTV and its popular show “Fixer Upper.” Barbara Wakefield, a Lawrenceburg, KY housewife and grandmother, was drawn for the cash prize from among more than 1.5 million sweepstakes entries.

Photograph of the Berkshire Hathaway Home Services $50,000 Sweep

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices $50,000 Sweepstakes winner Barbara Wakefield (fifth from left) along with granddaughter Cassie Fannin and husband Richard Wakefield (far right) accept a check from network representatives (from left) Dave Parks and Judy Parks, broker/owners of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Parks and Weisberg, REALTORS, Louisville, KY; Kerry Donovan, HSF Affiliates marketing VP; Chip Diehl, sales manager, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices DeMovellan Properties, Lexington, KY; and Anthony DeMovellan, president of DeMovellan Properties. The Wakefields reside in Lawrenceburg, KY.

The prize includes a design consultation with show hosts Chip and Joanna Gaines, who are remodeling and design pros. “We are stunned and so blessed,” said Wakefield, who lives on a farm outside Lawrenceburg with Richard, her husband of 50 years. “We are retired and will put the Sweepstakes money to good use.”

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices launched the $50,000 Sweepstakes in March with TV spots and DIY vignettes featuring the Gaineses and a digital campaign appearing across Scripps Networks. Consumer registrations during the $50,000 Sweepstakes set a record for similar contests on HGTV. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices affiliates were put in contact with consumers who expressed interest in buying and selling homes.

“We are delighted with our $50,000 Sweepstakes and the amount of people who registered to win,” said Gino Blefari, CEO of HSF Affiliates. “On behalf of all Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices affiliates and our support team at HSF Affiliates, we congratulate Barbara Wakefield and wish her well with her home improvement.”

Wakefield said timing couldn’t be better for the $50,000 Sweepstakes windfall. Her husband and two sons in law have begun renovating her kitchen and fixing structural issues within her home, which was built about a hundred years ago. “There are lots of reasons to renovate and a sagging floor is as good as any,” she said with a laugh. Wakefield will also replace her appliances, including a 35-year-old stove.

The Wakefields began watching “Fixer Upper” this spring and appreciate that the show helps everyday people find and create dream homes through renovation. “We especially like Chip and Joanna Gaines and the way they work together to make homes terrific,” said Barbara Wakefield. “You can tell that they love and respect each other, which shows in the quality work they do for others.

“My husband Richard and I treat each other the same way, and we have 50 great years together to prove it,” Barbara Wakefield added.

Stephen Phillips, president of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, said the network is already planning a similar promotion for 2016. “We love the enthusiasm and engagement shown by consumers toward Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the $50,000 Sweepstakes,” he said. “We want to make an even greater impact next year.”

About Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, based in Irvine, CA, is a real estate brokerage network built for a new era in residential real estate. The network, among the few organizations entrusted to use the world-renowned Berkshire Hathaway name, has grown to nearly 38,000 agents and 1,100+ offices operating in 47 states since its launch in September 2013.

Irvine, CA-based HSF Affiliates LLC operates Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, Prudential Real Estate and Real Living Real Estate franchise networks. The company is a joint venture of which HomeServices of America, Inc., the nation’s second-largest, full-service residential brokerage firm, is a majority owner. HomeServices of America is an affiliate of world-renowned Berkshire Hathaway Inc.

Prudential, the Prudential logo and the Rock symbol are service marks of Prudential Financial, Inc. and its related entities, and are used under license with no other affiliation with Prudential.

Media Contacts:

Kevin Ostler
(949) 794-7980
kevinostler@hsfranchise.com

Marisa Pincas
(212) 704-8112
marisa.pincas@edelman.com

Housing Update: October 2014

HSoA Logo

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) existing home sales numbers for September showed an increase of 2.4% after a modest decline in August  placing the seasonally adjusted annual sales volume in the 5.1 million-range. The continued positive momentum realized during the summer has continued throughout the early fall and we are on track for a healthy volume of sales as the recovery continues to move in a positive direction.

  • We continue to see a resurgence of consumers purchasing homes as primary residences. In many markets, more people are able to sell their homes, as fewer homeowners are underwater. This is a positive sign that we continue to move toward a more traditional buying and selling cycle.
  • Although the investment markets have experienced some recent adjustments, overall consumer confidence remains positive — a major influence on the housing market.
  • The latest Case-Shiller Report supports further improvement in housing: sales of existing homes rose in September as did new construction permits; improved employment statistics, low interest rates and slower increases in home prices– which supports home affordability and protects against a real estate bubble forming.

One of the major topics surrounding our industry is mortgage financing, particularly among first-time buyers.

  • Traditionally, first-time homebuyers have accounted for 40% of home sales; however today that number is at approximately 28%. While there are multiple factors contributing to this this decline, we believe a primary influence is the current mortgage requirements.
  • Full recovery of the housing market will be realized when the financing issues are addressed.
  • Providing consumers with a loan that they can repay has been the mainstay of our industry for nearly 40 years. Balanced credit standards, however gave way to a variety of unimpeded lending practices which contributed to the 2008 financial meltdown. As our industry — and the economy as a whole — went into recession, the pendulum swung too far in the opposite direction as we shifted to onerous mortgage regulations and standards, the result of which forced many credit worthy buyers from the marketplace.
  • The team of loan officers within HomeServices Lending, Trident Mortgage Company and Connecticut Home Mortgage are trained to provide consumers with complete home financing options as part of their commitment to delivering an unrivaled mortgage experience.

We are hopeful that balance is coming back to the home financing process. This is vital as we believe there are credit worthy individuals sitting on the sidelines who wish to purchase a home, but are reluctant either out of concern regarding  their long term home value depreciation (now quickly fading) or because of their ability to qualify for a mortgage (the more likely scenario).

This new, balanced cycle must include the millennial first-time buyers. Owning a home has been and continues to be an integral part of the American landscape.

Friday Feature: Nancy Ann Durrill

Today’s Friday Feature is all about Nancy Ann Durrill from our Blue Springs Office.

Nancy DurrillQ: Share one fun fact others might not know about you? 

N: I like to fish, garden, sew and listen to music when I’m not working with my clients.

Q: What do you like best about being a REALTOR? 

N: I truly enjoy working with buyers and sellers and walking them through the process.

Q: What do you like best about working for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty?

N: I really love the distinguished signs and the name recognition of Berkshire Hathaway. We are also lucky to have the best broker in Blue Springs, Stan Klinksick, and a great support team.

Want to connect with Nancy? Visit her website or give her a call!

Nancy Ann Durrill, GRI, ABR
(816) 303-3716
NancyD4242@BHHCKRealty.com
NancyD.BHHSKCRealty.com

Friday Feature: Scott Strevell

STREVELSToday’s Friday Feature is all about Scott Strevell from our Lenexa Office.

Q: Share one fun fact others might not know about you? 

S: I enjoy playing dollhouse with Marley, my granddaughter.

Q: What do you like best about being a REALTOR? 

S: There are many thing that I’ve enjoyed over the past 31 years as a Realtor. Flexibility of schedule. The reward of helping others achieve their real estate dreams. Looking forward to something different each and every day.

Q: What do you like best about working for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty?

S: Having superior support that helps us whenever it’s needed, but also letting us have flexibility, allowing us to showcase our individual strengths.

Q: Anything else you’d like to share with the world?

S: Consistent, focused efforts will produce success.

Want to connect with Scott? Visit his website or give him a call!

Scott Strevell
(913) 269-4269
Scott@KCHomes365.com
KCHomes365.com

Jim Manning Appointed President of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty

Jim Manning, BHHS Kansas City RealtyJim Manning was recently appointed President of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty. The announcement was made by Jodi Schade, vice president of Marketing Media & Technology for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty.

Manning will be responsible for the ongoing success of the Lenexa, KS and Blue Springs, MO branch offices and the over sixty real estate professionals. He is keenly focused on growing the business in the Kansas City Metro area over the next year, with the addition of offices and agents. Manning brings with him more than 36 years of real estate experience. Prior to joining Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty, he co-owned and operated ERA Manning and Associates based in Lenexa, KS.

“Jim shares Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty’s commitment to quality and customer service,” said Schade. “He is exactly the type of leader we are seeking, as we continue to grow the company, and increase our presence in the Kansas City Metro area.”

“Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty’s focus on the customer and the its goal to provide the best products and services for its sales professionals are what make leading this organization a perfect role,” said Manning.

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty, a HomeServices of America, Inc. owned company, became a member of the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices brokerage network, operated by HSF Affiliates LLC, in 2013.

About Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City has more than 60 sales associates and two offices in Lenexa, KS, and Blue Springs, MO, servicing the greater Kansas City area. The company offers residential real estate services, corporate relocations, referral services, mortgage, and title services. Learn more and view current properties at www.bhhskcrealty.com.

About Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, based in Irvine, CA, is a brand-new real estate brokerage network built for a new era in residential real estate. The network, among the few organizations entrusted to use the world-renowned Berkshire Hathaway name, brings to the real estate market a definitive mark of trust, integrity, stability and longevity.

About HSF Affiliates LLC
Irvine, CA-based HSF Affiliates LLC operates Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, Prudential Real Estate and Real Living Real Estate franchise networks. The company is a joint venture of which HomeServices of America, Inc., the nation’s second-largest, full-service residential brokerage firm, is a majority owner. HomeServices of America is an affiliate of world-renowned Berkshire Hathaway Inc.

Friday Feature: Kyle Blake

KYLEBWe always love when it comes time for our Friday Feature! It means we get to talk about one of our agents and it’s almost the weekend.

Today’s focus is on Kyle Blake. Kyle works out of our Lenexa Office.

Q: Share one fun fact others might not know about you? 

K: I’m a State Champion in track. I was a sprinter.

Q: What do you like best about being a REALTOR? 

K: Helping first time home buyers find their first home to start a family. The excitement of the first purchase is the best.

Q: What do you like best about working for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kansas City Realty?

K: The staff is friendly and make the office a great place to work. Being surrounded by so many real estate pros inspires me to work hard and try to keep up.

Q: Anything else you’d like to share with the world?

K: I also like working with people who are willing to do a little home remodeling of their own. I have done a lot of home remodeling myself so I enjoy getting creative with my buyers.

Want to connect with Kyle? Visit his website or give him a call!

Kyle Blake
KyleBlake@BHHSKCRealty.com
(913) 271-9924
KyleBlake.BHHSKCRealty.com