Consumer Confidence Is Boosting York County Housing Market

June 19, 2012

On a national level, single family construction is up 25% in the last six months.  Like much of the country, York County is experiencing a strong increase in new construction. With interest rates at historic lows and an increase in consumer confidence, buyers are taking advantage of special incentives offered by many new home builders across the country today.


This trend is certainly evident in the York County Housing Market. Building permits were up from 180 to 245 for first quarter 2012 compared with first quarter 2011. That represents a 36% increase over the same time period last year. Tremendous land values coupled with historic low interest rates are enabling builders to offer new home buyers some of the most affordable home values in years. David Weekley Homes has already sold 25 homes in York County’s popular Baxter Village which matches their total number sold in 2011.

Saussy Burbank has enjoyed tremendous success in the regions newest multi-use development, Riverwalk. When completed, Riverwalk will be the largest neighborhood between south Charlotte and Columbia. Saussy Burbank has completed their model home in Rivrwalk and already has 17 home sales.

Evans Coghill Homes has a model home under construction and the model will be completed by the end of August. Alan Banks, one of the partners of Evans Coghill Homes believes that with the proximity to Charlotte, low taxes, great schools and good land values that Riverwalk is poised to take over the success that Baxter Village has enjoyed for many years.  Riverwalk will offer amenities never before seen in Charlotte and Evans Coghill is poised to make Riverwalk a major part of their business plan for the next five plus years.

If you are in the market for a new home, now is a tremendous time to purchase.  Builders have negotiated low land prices, they are offering extremely attractive incentives and interest rates are near all-time lows.  If you have further questions about York County or the housing market in general, call me, I can help.

Cheers!


Ben Bowen

Charlotte’s Highest Priced Home Sold/The Mecklenburg Times

June 5, 2012

The highest-priced single-family home sale from May 22 to 28 was sold by Ben Bowen Properties


By Scott Baughman, staff writer
Published: May 31, 2012
Time posted: 4:43 pm
Tags: Commission Accomplished


HIGHEST

404 Eagle Bend Drive, Waxhaw

Listing agent: Ben Bowen, Ben Bowen Properties


Selling agent: Callie Kelly, Cottingham Chalk Hayes

Sold price: $1.78 million

Square feet: 9,209

Ben Bowen doesn’t understand why, but for the house at 404 Eagle Bend Drive more inspectors came around than for other houses he’s listed.

“We had about five home inspections,” said Bowen, of Ben Bowen Properties. “One inspector came only to check on the roof, and then another for a different aspect of the house, and so on.”

Also slightly unusual, at least for Bowen: The home was under contract for 60 days before closing, longer than his normal 45 days.

The house, which Bowen said was built in 2009, sold last week for more than $1 million. In the Longview Country Club neighborhood, which is gated, the home comes with six bedrooms and seven and a half bathrooms and sits on a 0.57-acre tract.

Bowen said the home was listed with him for about six months and he had only about 10 showings before it sold.

“At this level, you don’t get a lot of showings, so you have to make sure you spend as much time with each potential buyer as you can,” he said. “And while I love golf, selling this home is really more about selling the lifestyle that comes with it living in Longview.”

Bowen said the club features tennis courts and a Jack Nicklaus-designed course.

Bowen, who said he’s been selling golf course homes since 1996, said he has to spend a lot of time educating sellers these days on pricing their homes properly.

“People’s homes – even luxury homes like this one – are not worth what they were five years ago,” he said. “They have to understand that before they can sell it.”

Selling agent Callie Kelly, of Cottingham Chalk Hayes, said there appears to be an uptick in luxury home sales this year compared with last year.

“But I have no idea why,” she said.

Bowen said the home’s selling price was in the average price range for homes he lists, adding that he has 12 homes listed, including a 15,000-square-foot mansion that’s by Lake Wylie and comes with 11 acres. That home is listing for about $7.5 million.

Please feel free to contact me by email at bbowen@benbowenproperties.com or on my mobile phone at 704-572-6070 to find out how we can help you in the purchase or sell of your luxury home.

Cheers!

Ben Bowen

Don’t Show Homes, Sell Homes

March 22, 2012

I was recently asked to write an article for the Charlotte Business Journal In a feature called “Ask The Expert”. The goal of the article was for an expert in sales to help business owners and executives sharpen their selling skills,

“What Can I Do To Improve My Selling Skills?”

Here is a link to the article:

http://www.bizjournals.com/charlotte/print-edition/2012/02/03/expert-advice-on-your-questions.html

I have also copied the article below, but my question to you is “Does your real estate agent show homes, or do they sell homes?” Selling is a process that can be learned through experience. If you want results when buying or selling a home, go with an expert.


What can I do to improve my sales skills?


The first step towards improving your sales skills is to truly understand what selling really is. Selling is a three step process which includes:


1. Discovering a buyer’s needs and wants.
2. Demonstrating how your product or service fulfills those needs and wants.
3. Getting the buyer to take action.


Most people in sales are pretty good at demonstrating their product or service, but it is extremely important to first uncover exactly what problem the buyer wants your product or service to solve for them. After “Discovering & Demonstrating”, the true sales professionals are the ones who can get the buyer to take action; close the sale.

Cheers!

Ben Bowen

Do QR Codes Really Work???

October 4, 2011

What is a QR Code and do they really work?

QR Code is short for Quick Response Code and they are two dimensional bar codes that enable a smart phone to “photograph” the image.  This then sends the smart phone to a website that is tied to this QR Code.  They originated in Japan and have actually been around since 1994.

QR codes have provided a quick, easy way for consumers and individuals to interact with the physical world around them, all the while obtaining the digital information they so desperately crave. QR codes are only becoming more advanced and more prominent, so get yourself a free app on your phone and start exploring the world of QR codes today!

The virtual tours for my listings average between 4oo and 2,000 views on any given week.  QR Codes have accounted for between 5% to as much a 20% of my viewings.  This does not even take into account the number of times a person goes home to their computer and looks at more photographs because of what they saw on their smart phone.

When I receive a call from a buyer sitting in front of one of my listings and they want to go inside to see the home because of the pictures they are able to see on their smart phone; I know they work!

Cheers!

Ben Bowen

Charlotte Luxury Home Golf Communities Post Staggering Second Quarter Results!!!

August 1, 2011

So often I am asked “How’s the market?” I would venture to say that most people, real estate agents included, really don’t know. They instead tell you how busy they are or what they have heard on mainstream media.

Since I specialize in luxury homes and golf course communities, I make it my business to KNOW what is happening. I would like to share some pretty amazing numbers with you.

GET READY!!!


• Ballantyne Country Club Average Price is $696,103
• Longview Average Price is $954,515
• Piper Glen Average Price is $698,900
• Providence Country Club Average Price is $525,048
• River Run Average Price is $617,044
• The Peninsula Average Price is $1,082,275
• The Point Average Price is $1,162,892


The total number of homes closed during the first quarter was 37. The total number of closed homes during the second quarter was 83!

The total dollar volume of closed homes during the first quarter was $29,139,050. The total dollar volume of closed homes during the second quarter was $66,760,169!
This represents a staggering 224% increase in the number of homes closed in second quarter 2011 compared to the first quarter of 2011. The dollar volume increased by 229%!

All seven of the above mentioned Charlotte Golf Course Communities have had an average closed price of greater than $500,000 for 2011. The data reflects closed homes for first and second quarter of 2011.

So, the next time somone asks you “How’s the market?’, now you will know.  The  market is in Charlotte’s leading golf course communities is currently trending WAY UPWARD!  Real estate is like the weather, it is very local.  The local luxury home golf course community market is enjoying some tremendous rays of sunshine right now!!!  Look out for the rainbow!!!

Tying Technology To Real Estate

July 22, 2011

Listing and selling a home today involves far more than simply putting the listing into MLS and waiting on the phone to ring. I recently went on a listing appointment and the real estate agent the sellers had interviewed prior to me said “All I can do is put your listing into MLS and see what happens”.  True story!  Unbelievable!

In order to survive and thrive in today’s real estate market, it is so important that the agents are utilizing all of the latest trends in technology. All of my homes listed are photographed by a professional photographer and have websites built specifically for that listing, this information is distributed to over 200 websites, not to mention to the 1,000 plus real estate agents in my data base.  The home listed is also featured on all of the top real estate search sites such as Realtor.com, Trulia, Zillow, and so many more.

In addition to this, my listings are featured on You Tube (which is the #2 used search engine on the internet, behind only Google), Facebook, Linked In, and Twitter. You have to spread the word in this social media world we live in and selling your home is no different.

To learn more, please click the following link to a recent article featured in the Charlotte Business Journal about Ben Bowen Properties.

http://www.bizjournals.com/charlotte/print-edition/2011/07/15/tying-technology-to-real-estate.html

Cheers!

Ben Bowen

Things Are Looking Up in NorthStone!!!

June 30, 2011

Things are looking up despite all of the mixed news regarding real estate covered in the media. Are we out of the woods yet? No, however there are some very encouraging signs right now in the marketplace and I am going to highlight some details in one of Charlotte’s most successful golf course communities, NorthStone.

Over the past 12 months, the number of homes closed in NorthStone is up a remarkable 50% from 36 closings to 54 closings! That’s great news! The “Months Supply of Available Homes” is down 55% from a 17.7 month supply to a 8 month supply currently. That is also great news!

The “Average Sales Price” is down 2.7% to $294,429. The previous year saw the average sales price drop 10.3%, so we are trending in a much more positive direction here as well.

The “Percentage of Original List Price Received” is at 91.3%, which is down 0.5% from last years number of 91.7%. 2010 numbers were down 1.9% from 2009, so again, this statistic is also getting better.

What does this mean to you? If you are in the market to buy a home, there has never been a better time than now. The current average rate on a 30-year mortgage as of this writing is a ridiculously low 4.53% and only 3.70% for a 15-year mortgage.

When you combine the very attractive pricing of the homes along with historically low interest rates, this means you can now purchase more home than ever before.

At the end of the day, you deserve to love coming home to your home everyday. If you don’t love your home, contact a Realtor to help find your dream home. Now is the time.

“Good things come to those who wait, but only the things left behind by those who hustle”.

Cheers!

Ben Bowen

\”Beautiful Rare Basement Home For Sale In NorthStone\”

Ballantyne Country Club Market Update

May 4, 2011

The Charlotte luxury home market, homes priced above $500,000, continues to work thru its’ supply of available homes, and Ballantyne Country Club is no different.

In Ballantyne Country Club, there have been 12 home closings in 2011 thru April 30; that compares with 16 closings during the same time period in 2010. However, there are some bright spots. The average Days On Market is down 28% from 163 DOM in 2010 to 117 DOM in 2011. Homes are also selling for an average of 94.7% of list price in 2011 compared to 92.2% thru the same period last year.

There are currently 41 homes for sale in Ballantyne ranging in price from $539,900 – $4,950,000 with an average list price of $1,130,143. “Average” prices can sometimes get distorted because of a few homes priced “out of the norm” and that is the case here. The ‘Median” list price in Ballantyne is $839,500 which is a better representation of where the current home market here is.

The bottom line is homes in Ballantyne are priced more accurately today than they were one year ago and they are selling quicker and for a greater percentage of list price than they were one year ago.

Cheers!

Ben Bowen

Charlotte Luxury Home Report First Qtr. 2011

April 7, 2011

Spring is in the air and life is good.

I hope this finds you doing well. It is a very interesting time for the Charlotte housing market. The luxury home market appears to be extremely active right now. We are getting lots of listings, showings, and contracts. Spring is in the air and it’s a great time for people who have been thinking about buying or selling real estate to actually do so.

First quarter 2010 there were 279 closings above $500,000 in the Charlotte market per the MLS records. In 2011, that number has slipped to 234.  The good news is it continues to be a buyer’s market which means it is a tremendous time to take advantage of these opportunities to move up into a higher priced home.

The average home price dropped from $802,821 to $740,077; again, this takes into account only home closings above $500,000 and does not reflect the entire pricing spectrum of the Charlotte market.
Interestingly, homes in 2011 are selling at 92.3% of list price which compares favorably to the 2010 number of 90.8%. Another big statistic is the Days On Market. The average number of days on market has dropped from 242 in 2010 to only 176 in 2011 for homes closed above $500,000. That is a 27% reduction in the amount of time it is taking to sell luxury homes in the Charlotte market.

What does this all mean? Homes that show well and that are priced well are selling in a significantly shorter time frame and they are selling for a higher percentage of list price than last year. Sellers are better understanding the true market value of their home and are pricing them accordingly.
If you need help buying or selling real estate, or in just understanding the market, call us, we know what the current trends are.  We are your experts on luxury homes, new construction and golf course communities in the Charlotte market.

Cheers!

Ben Bowen

Let’s Dance In The Rain!!!

January 28, 2011

“Life isn’t about waiting for the storms to pass, it’s about learning to dance in the rain.”

It’s seems to have been raining a lot on the real estate market for the past couple of years.  Sellers have been holding on to beliefs of inflated values of their homes and buyers have been waiting on the bottom. This is part of the reason the real estate market has been so lackluster.  Buyers need to understand that the only way we will know we have hit bottom, is when it’s in our rear view mirror.

The sales volume for Charlotte’s Top Ten golf course communities in 2010 was up an astounding 33% vs. 2009 in closed dollar volume!!!  Does that mean the bottom is in our rear view mirror?  Only time will tell.

This is great news for our local real estate market! This means that sellers are coming to terms with the real market value of their homes, which in some cases is still pretty strong, and that buyers are taking advantage of tremendous financing opportunities along with some aggressive home prices.

If you would like a detailed market analysis on any property in the metro-Charlotte area, just let me know, that’s what I’m here for.

Cheers! Let’s make it a great 2011…

Ben Bowen

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