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The Louisville Gaines Real Estate Blog

The Louisville Gaines Real Estate Blog

Can't Find the House You Want? Consider New Construction In Louisville

The almost-behind-us month of April is National New Homes Month. After a slump in permit issuance, the number of new homes being built in Louisville and around the country is way up. Elite Homes, Inc. a local builder, reports rising traffic in model homes that exceeds that at the top of the housing boom in 2006. Key Homes, LLC reports the same and expects a 40% increase in new home sales this year.construction

Why The Increase In Housing Starts?

An improving economy, low mortgage rates, pent-up demand for new housing, and a shortage of properties that the current crop of homebuyers want to purchase are all contribute to this increasing interest in new construction. For homebuyer, new construction offers a viable alternative to the declining inventory of what is currently on the market. As the National Association of Realtors said recently, the limited inventory of homes, particularly at certain price points, leaves many buyers scrambling to find what they want, hold back sales, and puts many properties in a bidding war.

In March 2003, there were nearly 4,000 homes on the market in Louisville. While that might sound like a sizable number, there is no guarantee that what was on the market matched the desires of an individual buyer for location, number of bedrooms, price, and amenities. While we won't run out of houses, the ones that first time buyers or first-time move-up buyers want are in short supply.

I've Seen The Inventory Shortages

In Louisville, I have seen the impact of decreasing inventory over the last year, as desirable homes I have listed one day have...

Why Buying Local In Louisville Is Worth Every Cent

buy local graphicsIf you follow my blog, you know that I like to promote local business. As a small businessperson myself, I know that I can provide great service to my customers, patronize other local firms that provide photography, staging, painting, appraisal, and other services, and still make a decent living while keeping costs in check.

When you talk about the value of buying local, it is easy to relate when you're talking real estate. That gets you where you live – literally. Real estate is local. In the words of the current Zillow commercial, when you buy a home, "You're not just looking for a house, you're looking for a place for your life to happen."

Local Community Assets

If Louisville is where you make your home, the prices of property are important to you, but so is the general prosperity of the city. You want to live in place where the streets are safe and not full of potholes, the air is clean and safe to breathe, the schools will help your kids excel, and the parks are well kept and inviting. You want great shopping, great features, and plenty of things to do.

There is an intricate relationship between what the city has to offer and the vitality of the local economy. Nationally-based businesses tend to set up shop in cities with great infrastructure and a good customer base; when they do well, they pay more taxes to support the city. In addition, a prosperous economy open up opportunities for small businesses to get started and prosperous too.

Why Buying Local Helps Louisville

As consumers, we are happy to see the Big Box stores and the national restaurant...

Derby Time For Everyone

mint juleps, glass, Kentucky DerbyWhen you live in Louisville, Kentucky, you know that most of the month of April is devoted to preparing for the Kentucky Derby that is held on the first weekend in May. The event attracts 100,000 visitors, many from out of town, and brings well over $200 million to the city. Many of the events so associated with the Derby are underwritten by corporate sponsors to ensure plenty of activities even for people who don't attend the race.

You might say, "if you live in Louisville, why wouldn't you go to the race?” Going to the event is a pricey affair. The celebrities who sit in Millionaires Row, decked out in pricey hats, pay $5,000 for a seat and a buffet lunch. Tickets to see the race at Churchill Downs start at $65 per person for admission to the infield. Few attendees in the infield can see the race, but enjoy the spirit of the day, fueled by $11 mint juleps, hot dogs, barbecue sandwiches, Derby Pie, and other fare. Many Louisville citizens prefer to celebrate the event in bars or at backyard parties.

Pegasus Pins

Even if you aren't planning on attending the horse race itself, there is plenty to do to get you in the spirit. In the weeks preceding the Derby, the city hosts many events that are free to the public. The only requirement is to buy a five dollar Pegasus pin available throughout the city. Once the pin is registered, pin holders are free to come to at least 30 other free events. Amidst the parades, marathons, golf events, festivals, winetasting, and dinners that will continue through May 4 are many charity events. Some non-profits earn much of their annual budget from Derby-time fundraisers.

Reach Out To Louisville

Even without a pin, you can participate...

Which Home Defects Are 'Deal Breakers'?

With the spring real estate market in Louisville much hotter than the weather, you might be ready to join the frenzy and buy or sell your home. Inventory is low at some price points in some locations, so if you put your home up for sale, you might find that it is quickly scooped up by an eager buyer. As a home buyer, you might have to settle for a great home that doesn't match all of your wish list items, and even then, may be in a multiple bid situation with other house–hungry buyers.

A couple months ago, we wrote about the importance of home inspections and the problems that the inspector might turn up. Now that sellers are rushing to get their homes on the market to take advantage of the current boom and buyers are considering homes with potential, what types of problems are deal breakers?

 Common Deal Breakers

No home is perfect, but certain types of problems are serious enough to send buyers packing and force a seller who thinks he has a deal to renegotiate the selling price.

  • Foundation problems. The home may show a few minor cracks after settling but larger cracks may mean expensive trouble.
  • Termites or other pests. Current or past infestations of termites, carpenter ants, and other pests may weaken their home’s structural integrity. Wiring issues. Old wiring such as knob and tube or aluminum may present a fire hazard, while the fuse box or circuit box may show the wiring is inadequate for modern appliances.
  • Roof. Roofs have a lifespan that can be expanded by patching, up to a point. If the roof is past its prime, or if the flashing is in poor condition (or nonexistent), the roof can...

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