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Eagle River Market update 8/24/2009

by Eric Bushnell

This is a quick update after the last one, but I want to get you this new information as quickly as possible.  With school starting last week I know that most people with school age children no longer have the luxury of extra time.  Knowing what is going on at this time is very important in maximizing the time that you do have available.

Eagle River saw a slow down in pending activity, and this was most likely because local schools started last Wednesday.  I anticipate that buyers will be getting back to it this week.  The number of new homes remains fairly steady, we saw 11 new homes listed for sale last week, while 5 homes were placed under contract and pended.  There were no new homes listed in the Chugiak/Peter's Creek are, however we did see 3 homes placed under contract.

There still are some very good deals on the market, there are also several very good new homes that could be built for you.  Local builders are agressively pricing homes for those that have the time to build.  If you have questions about this or any other real estate related question please contact me at bushnell@mtaonline.net, or call me at 907-360-7471.

Have a Great week!

Eagle River real estate market update August 21,2009

by Eric Bushnell

Wow, what a week! Things have been hopping around here and I am just now getting to a weekly update.  I will still share with you last weeks numbers and try to give some insight into whats transpiring this week.  The weather has been very nice and it brings out the buyers.  School started this week in the Valley and in Anchorage, so many potential buyers have been very busy.

Last week we saw 16 homes pend in the Eagle River market compared to just 14 new listings.  When I looked at existing inventory yesterday there were only 188 homes available in Eagle River; 16 of which are not built at this time. That leaves us with just a 2.73 month supply of homes available in Eagle River.  This is not surprising to me as we are seeing many new military personnel moving into the area. 

Also, keep an eye on your calendar.  November 30th is almost here.  If you are a first time home buyer and wish to take advantage of the $8000 tax credit you must close on your new home by November 30th, 2009.  If you have not owned a home within the last two years you may qualify for this tax credit, even if you owned a home before that. Visit the buyers resource section of my website for more information.

If you are thinking about buying a home now may be the time.  Call me and ask the hard questions, I will give you a straight answer.  Next year it may be more expensive and you will not be able to buy what you want.

First Day of School in the Mat-Su

by Eric Bushnell

This weekend was a time to check our list, make sure all the laundry was done, and a couple of trips to stores to find the last of the school supplies.  Why, because school starts today in the Mat-Su Valley.

We had to double check the lists, buy new shoes, and look for that elusive primary journal for my first grader.  Then it was to bed early, ya right.

Planning sure makes this easier, but even with the best planning it seems like I'm missing something.  I've checked my list and now I will leave my children to the local schools, and I am sure that they will do great.

A little last minute cartoons, breakfast, get dressed, and it's picture time.  Check out the photos on www.Facebook.com/eric.bushnell, I should have them uploaded later today.

Now that summer is officially over here in Alaska, we can only hope for a long fall with mild weather. More on this later in the week.  School has started and now were back into the daily routine.

Good luck to all of you with school age kids.

Reprint of Alaska Star article

by Eric Bushnell

Local real estate market bucks the trend

By DARRELL L. BREESE
Alaska Star

Nationally the economy is languishing in a recession, as foreclosed homes flood the market. And the picture is not much prettier within the state.

Moody's Adversity Index, released July 17 tagged Alaska as "in recession" since April. The unemployment rate for Alaska is at 8.5 percent and in Anchorage it is at 7.3 percent.

Given all the economic indicators one would assume that the local real estate market is struggling, but that is not the case according to a group of local Realtors.

"The local market has remained fairly stable," said Eric Bushnell, "All in all the Chugiak-Eagle River real estate market is balanced and doing better than other parts of the state."

Statistics from the Alaska Multiple Listing Service, which records all properties for sale by Realtors in the state, shows there has been little change in the local market since the decline of the nation's economy, especially in the area of median priced homes, between $250,000 and $350,000.

"There has been a slight reduction in the number of sales in that price range," Bushnell said. "But the homes are still selling."

The key indicator of the vitality of the housing market for Bushnell is the amount of supply.

"National experts tell us that a market with a four to six month supply of homes represents a balanced market," he said. "Anything more than that indicates it's a buyers market. A supply less than that means it's a sellers market."

The current supply of homes on the market in the Chugiak-Eagle River area is at 4.75 months. Of the 196 homes available in the local market at the end of July, there were offers pending on 21 of them and 38 home sales were completed within the month. By comparison, Parker Colo., a community with a similar population to the Chugiak-Eagle River area, has 900 homes on the market.

Comparing the current local numbers to previous years reveals a slight dip in the market, but nothing as drastic as some communities around the state and country are experiencing. In July of 2008 there was a 4.1 month inventory of homes for sale in Chugiak-Eagle River and 53 sales closed; in July 2007, at the high point of the real estate boom, there was a 3.84 month supply of homes and 68 homes sold.

"We're not seeing the homes flying off the market like they did a couple years ago," Bushnell said. "But the homes are still selling."

The homes priced right and presented in a proper manner to potential homebuyers are still moving fast. One case is a home listed for sale by Cindy Wilson of Re-Max of Eagle River. The home received four offers within the first week on the market.

Compared to other parts of the state, the local are especially striking.

In the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, there is a 6.5-month inventory of homes; Anchorage has an 8.7-month inventory; and the Kenai Peninsula has a 16-month inventory. In July, Anchorage had more than 1,000 homes on the market and only 67 pending sales.

"Having such a balanced market compared to the rest of the state is good for the local homeowner," Bushnell said. "It means homes hold their value, which brings stability to the local market."

What is it that makes the local real estate market so appealing?

According to Bushnell, it is because of the golden rule in real estate.

"Location, location, location," he said. "The Chugiak-Eagle River area is a true bedroom community. But it's also a great place to raise a family and experience Alaska."

Both Bushnell and Wilson credited the influx of military families, caused by an increase in troops at Fort Richardson, as one of the keys to the markets overall health.

Wilson also pointed to the ever-fluctuating price of gas as a key element to the local housing market.

"People who were looking in the Mat-Su Valley three years ago are now looking in Eagle River," she said. "As gas prices go up, more people move closer to where they work - Anchorage."

Other key attractors for homebuyers are the community and small-town charm of the area.

"People like to live here because they know their neighbors," Bushnell said. "Whether it be from a PTA meeting or a kids hockey team you get a sense of belonging that is difficult to find in Anchorage."

Bushnell speculated that if there were an increase in certain amenities locally, such as entertainment outlets and restaurants, the market would be even stronger than it is today.

Reach the reporter at darrell.breese.@alaskastar.com.



This article published in The Alaska Star on Thursday, August 6, 2009.

Eagle River Market update August 11, 2009

by Eric Bushnell

Here is the Eagle River Real Estate market update for this week.  Last week we saw continued strong activity in our local real estate market.  17 homes pended (accepted contracts), while there we only 14 new homes listed for sale.  Current inventory levels continue to drop, and I hear from other Realtors that buyers are having a harder time finding what they're really looking for.

Interest rates have remained steady, with minor ups and downs.  Current rates range from 5% to 5.375% for 30 year mortgages.  There are several new rules in the lending world that make it a little more time consuming to purchase a home.  The good news is that there is plenty of money available if you wish to buy. 

If you are considering buying I would do it now before the interest rates go up.  With the economic stimulus monies floating around most economists believe it is only a matter of time before we some inflation and interest rates have to go up.

Better to get what you want now, while you can afford it.

Great weekend adventure

by Eric Bushnell

There is only one week left before the kids go back to school.  I have been trying to plan activities for all of us.  My wife is off to Brazil with a group of friends from the Wasilla and Eagle River Rotary (Rotoplast, helping kids with cleft lips and pallets).  My daughter is off with her friends in Cooper Landing floating the Kenai River without me.  go figure.

So that leaves me and Blake, what can we do me and my six year old son.  Well lets pack up the  boat and head to the Deshka River, I hear the Silvers are in.  So we headed up Saturday night and fishing was a little slow, but around 7:30 we finally got a taker and Blake caught his first salmon.

We camped overnight and we're back at it in the morning.  We caught three more fish.  Blake and I had a great time. Sunday was sunny and there was very little wind.  More fish too.

Another great weekend.

 

 

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Contact Information

Lee Realty, LLC
Lee Realty, LLC.
5050 Dunbar Drive #F
Wasilla AK 99654
Office: 907-376-0119
Fax: (907) 376-4039

 

 

 

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