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Ready to Make an Offer? 4 Tips for Success

by Melissa Thompson

Ready to Make an Offer? 4 Tips for Success | Keeping Current Matters

So you’ve been searching for that perfect house to call a ‘home’ and you finally found one! The price is right, and in such a competitive market you want to make sure you make a good offer so that you can guarantee your dream of making this house yours comes true!

Freddie Mac covered 4 Tips for Making an Offer” in their latest Executive Perspective.Here are the 4 Tips they covered along with some additional information for your consideration:

1. Understand How Much You Can Afford

“While it's not nearly as fun as house hunting, fully understanding your finances is critical in making an offer.”

This ‘tip’ or ‘step’ really should take place before you start your home search process.

As we’ve mentioned before, getting pre-approved is one of many steps that will show home sellers that you are serious about buying, and will allow you to make your offer with the confidence of knowing that you have already been approved for a mortgage for that amount. You will also need to know if you are prepared to make any repairs that may need to be made to the house (ex: new roof, new furnace).

2. Act Fast

“Even though there are fewer investors, the inventory of homes for sale is also low and competition for housing continues to heat up in many parts of the country.”

According to the latest Existing Home Sales Report, the inventory of homes for sale is currently at a 4.7-month supply. This is well below the 6-month supply that is needed for a ‘normal’ market. Buyer demand has continued to outpace the supply of homes for sale, causing buyers to compete with each other for their dream home.

Make sure that as soon as you decide that you want to make an offer, you work with your agent to present it as soon as possible.

3. Make a Solid Offer

Freddie Mac offers this advice to help make your offer the strongest it can be:

“Your strongest offer will be comparable with other sales and listings in the neighborhood. A licensed real estate agent active in the neighborhoods you are considering will be instrumental in helping you put in a solid offer based on their experience and other key considerations such as recent sales of similar homes, the condition of the house and what you can afford.” 

Consider ways of making your offer stand out! Many buyers write a personal letter to the seller letting them know how much they would love to be the new homeowners. Your agent will be able to help you figure out if there are any other ways your offer could stand above the rest.

4. Be Prepared to Negotiate

“It's likely that you'll get at least one counteroffer from the sellers so be prepared. The two things most likely to be negotiated are the selling price and closing date. Given that, you'll be glad you did your homework first to understand how much you can afford.  

Your agent will also be key in the negotiation process, giving you guidance on the counteroffer and making sure that the agreed-to contract terms are met.”

If your offer is approved, Freddie Mac urges you to “always get an independent home inspection, so you know the true condition of the home. If the inspection uncovers undisclosed problems or issues, you can typically re-negotiate the terms or cancel the contract.”

Bottom Line

Whether buying your first home or your fifth, having a local real estate professional who is an expert in their market on your side is your best bet to make sure the process goes smoothly. Happy House Hunting!

 

 

101 Things To Do In Memphis #32: Paint a Piece

by Melissa Thompson

You don’t have to be an artist and guests of all ages are welcome at this paint your own pottery studio! Paint a Piece, Memphis’ Most Popular Creative Studio, offers pottery painting, canvas painting, silver clay, and glass fusing.  

How it works… Pottery Painting: pick your piece, choose from a huge selection of unfinished bisque. Then you paint whatever design you want on it!  If you're not naturally that artistic, they have an idea book you can look at for inspiration, as well as stencils, stamps, stickers, plus over 60 paint colors!  So you can really get creative if the mood strikes. After you paint your masterpiece, you leave it at the store to be glazed and fired in the kiln.  It takes a couple days, then it’s your to take home and share!  Join in on Canvas Painting by choosing a canvas and following step-by-step instructions. How easy is that! Maybe you are interested in making your own jewelry? Silver Clay lets you choose your piece of silver and then they fire, tumble and polish your silver in the studio.  You can pick up your pieces in about 5 days! And last, but certainly not least, Glass Fusing, the process of manipulating pieces of glass to bend and form into shapes. Pick your base, create a design, frame it, fill it and design it. Paint a Piece will fire your piece and you’ll have a truly unique design.

If you are looking for a creative place for your next event, Paint a Piece offers a great space for birthday parties, girl’s night out and other special events. They offer unique events each month and specials during the holidays, plus they will even come to you! Paint a Piece has been doing field trips for the past 16 years to area schools and daycares.  

Visit paintapiece.com for more info or contact them directly at 901.754.0884 or fun@paintapiece.com.

It is a great way to spend time with kids or friends and create something special for yourself or someone you love.

 

By and photo credit: paintapiece.com

Fixing Up the House, End of Summer Style!

by Melissa Thompson

Fall is heading our way and quick! Every time the seasons change there always seem to be something around the house that needs fixing, cleaning, or redoing. We always find projects that need tending to.

Below is a list of things most of us typically do when welcoming in the fall weather.

  • Moving items from our backyards like lawn furniture, kids’ toys, outside accessories to the shed or garage.
  • Cleaning out the garage of any unused or extra items and reorganizing the contents staying.
  • Create a more organized space in the garage (or even other areas of the house, like the attic) with plastic bins that are labeled.
  • Change the batteries in your smoke detectors.
  • Check the outside lights in your front yards (especially if they are on a timer- to be sure everything works and is prepared for the many adjustments that come with earlier darkness).
  • Have your bi-annually HVAC unit maintenance taken care of, to ensure your unit is in proper working condition when the weather changes, including replacing air filters.
  • Cleaning flowerbeds now will be so helpful next spring. Many of our lovely summer flowers are no longer blooming when the wonderful weather of summer waves goodbye. Taking the time to remove the dying bulbs and applying new mulch will keep the still thriving fall flowers like mums, goldenrod and helianthus looking delightful and eye-catching. Adding in fall flowers to your flowerbed will add bursts of fall colors.
  • Repair any cracks to your paved driveway, this will prevent winter weather from eroding the surface; creating an expensive fix down the line.
  • Clean out the gutters (this should be done seasonally if possible) to keep out unwanted leaks or gutters falling at bay.
  • Trim low hanging trees near your home or gutters to reduce possible damage.

De-cluttering and maintaining the beauty of our homes is a mission we all strive for, especially those of us who are selling our homes. Now let’s get some of those projects off the to-do list!

photo credit: airconditioningverobeachfl.net

A Dust-Free Home

by Melissa Thompson

Having a dust-free home isn’t difficult, but it takes a serious commitment and a housekeeping strategy that addresses the dust and its causes. Whether your motive is cleanliness or to eliminate the cause of some allergies and asthma symptoms, it will be worth it.10043513-250.jpg

  • Try to dust your home at least twice a week. Dust the tallest items and work your way down. Dust picture frames, blinds, baseboards and anything that stands out from the wall.
  • Feather dusters can spread more dust than they collect compared to microfiber cloths that attracts dust because they have an electrostatic charge.
  • Filters on heating and air-conditioning systems should be changed often not only to remove dust from the air but to increase the efficiency of the units themselves. Special HEPA filters can improve the overall indoor air quality.
  • Frequently changing the bag or emptying the container in your vacuum is helpful in eliminating dust.
  • Vacuum the floors at least once a week. Vacuum under furniture and periodically, move appliances to clean behind and underneath. Use the proper attachments to vacuum upholstered furniture and under cushions.
  • Eliminate dust magnets like carpet, heavy drapes and upholstered furniture. Consider hard surface flooring like wood or tile instead of carpet.
  • Keep windows closed to keep dust out.
  • Clean your pillows and drapes.
  • Damp mopping and dusting with plain water helps hold the dust and is environmentally friendly.
  • A humidifier can eliminate static electricity which holds dust.
  • Air purifiers circulate air and capture dust and other pollutants.

By: patzaby.com

101 Things To Do In Memphis #31: Restaurant Iris

by Melissa Thompson

If you are looking for the perfect setting for a romantic date-night, special occasion, or private party, plus an exquisite meal, Restaurant Iris is just the spot! A charming French-Creole restaurant, Restaurant Iris has taken the Memphis dining scene by storm. Among its many accolades, Restaurant Iris has received a four-star review from the Commercial Appeal and was voted “Best Fine Dining” and “Best Date Night” in the publication’s “Memphis Most” Reader’s Poll, and was voted Memphis’ “Best Restaurant”, “Best Chef” and “Best Service” four years in a row by Memphis Magazine. In 2014, Restaurant Iris was also voted one of “OpenTable Diner’s Choice Most Romantic Restaurants in America.”

Chef Kelly English’s steadfast approach to contemporary southern cuisine, deeply rooted in his Louisiana upbringing and heavily influenced by his travels around the globe, has earned him one of the most recognized culinary names in the South. One is sure to reap the benefits of Chef English’s rich culinary background and his endless creativity and passion for food in each dish featuring local and seasonal ingredients.

Restaurant Iris is located at 2146 Monroe Avenue in historic Overton Square of midtown Memphis. A classic Southern rowhouse that has been transformed into a beautiful restaurant. Private rooms are also available, or maybe you want the whole restaurant to yourself… Restaurant Iris can accommodate.

Visit their website for more information and be sure to make your reservations as early as possible, 901.590.2828, they are known to book up at least 2 weeks in advance! We invite you to experience one of the city’s most popular restaurants, “Restaurant Iris, simplicity at its most elegant.” 

By and photo credit: restaurantIris.com

Getting to Know Melissa Thompson

by Melissa Thompson

Hi and welcome! Thank you for stopping by my new venture to connect with all of you! First things first, let me tell you a little about myself if you don’t know me already. My name is Melissa Thompson; I have been in the real estate field for almost thirty years and absolutely enjoy every minute of it. This isn’t a job for me, it is a passion. I represent the wonderful area and surrounding areas of Memphis, TN. Real estate is a family business, I am following in my father’s footsteps. He is my source of strength and support. With his guidance and encouragement, I have become one of Memphis Tennessee’s most successful Realtors. I was born and raised in Memphis so the area is not just where I work it is where I live and play.

Family is key to me, as a mother of five incredible children I understand that family is your top priority too but also that making a move affects the whole family- I pull out all the stops to make the transition and process as smooth as possible.  When I am not running half marathons I am making memories and spending time with my family. I have a personal goal to do a half marathon in a new location once a year.

I am a member of the Multi-Million Dollar Club and have consistently been a “Top Producing” agent. I average selling a home every 3 days making me a Top Agent for Crye-Leike Realtors; the Mid-South's #1 Real Estate Company. Having accomplishments and awards next to my name in this industry is humbling and important to me as businesswoman succeeding but also proving that my clients value what I do for them just as much as I do.

I’ve been told my negotiating skills have made quite a few deals, which is a compliment and extraordinarily special both business-wise and personally. When I can be helpful and memorable to my clients it is extremely remarkable to me. This is what I love; it’s why I have been doing it so long. You are all my priority.

I proudly will tell you my track record speaks volumes. I have been called unstoppable, hard-working, savvy and aggressive when it comes to marketing; just to name a few. I’d say these are wonderful qualities I’ll take being called from my amazing clients any day. Ninety percent of my business is repeat clients or based upon referrals. The confidences you have in me is shown from working with me repeatedly  or referring me to work with your loved ones; that is trust- a vital mission I strive for in every aspect of my life.

The reason I decided to start blogging was to have a new way to reach out and connect with my peers and clientele (past, present and future). Connecting with all of you is a vital part of my profession; all of the people I get to meet and have conversations with. It also seemed like a new, fun way to bring all of you some quality feedback, tips and topics without having to scour the internet.

I hope you will come back to the blog to see what else I have to share. I also hope to provide you with tips and information that are valuable to all, especially to homeowners and buyers. My goal is to make all of you feel intrigued enough to see what content the next post will include, but also to feel you have made a connection with me, as I feel I’ve done with many of you whom I’ve met.

Feel free to contact me at any time with your real estate needs or questions.  

5 Reasons to Sell This Fall

by Melissa Thompson

5 Reasons to Sell This Fall | Keeping Current Matters

School is back in session, the holidays are right around the corner, you might not think that now is the best time to sell your house. But with inventory below historic numbers and demand still strong, you could be missing out on a great opportunity for your family.

Here are five reasons why you should consider selling your house this fall: 

1. Demand Is Strong

The latest Realtors’ Confidence Index from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains very strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing and able to purchase… and are in the market right now!

Take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market.

2. There Is Less Competition Now

According to NAR’s latest Existing Home Sales Report, the supply of homes for sale is still under the 6-month supply that is needed for a normal housing market at 4.7-months.

This means, in most areas, there are not enough homes for sale to satisfy the number of buyers in that market. This is good news for home prices. However, additional inventory is about to come to market.

There is a pent-up desire for many homeowners to move, as they were unable to sell over the last few years because of a negative equity situation. Homeowners are now seeing a return to positive equity as real estate values have increased over the last two years. Many of these homes will be coming to the market this fall.

Also, as builders regain confidence in the market, new construction of single-family homes is projected to continue to increase over the next two years, reaching historic levels by 2017. Last month’s new home sales numbers show that many buyers who have not been able to find their dream home within the existing inventory have turned to new construction to fulfill their needs.

The choices buyers have will continue to increase. Don’t wait until all this other inventory of homes comes to market before you sell.

3. The Process Will Be Quicker

Fannie Mae announced that they anticipate an acceleration in home sales that will surpass 2007's pace. As the market heats up, banks will be inundated with loan inquiries causing closing-time lines to lengthen. Selling now will make the process quicker & simpler. 

4. There Will Never Be a Better Time to Move Up

If you are moving up to a larger, more expensive home, consider doing it now. Prices are projected to appreciate by 5.3% over the next year, according to CoreLogic. If you are moving to a higher-priced home, it will wind up costing you more in raw dollars (both in down payment and mortgage payment) if you wait.

According to Freddie Mac’s latest report, you can also lock-in your 30-year housing expense with an interest rate around 3.46% right now. Interest rates are projected to increase moderately over the next 12 months. Even a small increase in rate will have a big impact on your housing cost.

5. It’s Time to Move On with Your Life

Look at the reason you decided to sell in the first place and determine whether it is worth waiting. Is money more important than being with family? Is money more important than your health? Is money more important than having the freedom to go on with your life the way you think you should?

Only you know the answers to the questions above. You have the power to take control of the situation by putting your home on the market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire. 

That is what is truly important.

101 Things To Do In Memphis #30: Bona Fide Blues Festival

by Melissa Thompson

There’s no better way to enjoy the Blues than in the city where it was born. For two days Memphis hosts an electrifying Blues Festival in Overton Square, celebrating the Mid-South’s blues heritage by showcasing today’s blues and blues-influenced musicians. With a free all-day stage in Overton Square and nightclub performances in midtown, the second annual Bona Fide Blues Festival could only happen in one city: Memphis. No light shows. No Auto-Tune. Just down and dirty, authentic blues music played by local area musicians. Created by the Memphis Blues Society for one reason – Bona Fide showcases the music of the delta, played for you by artists who call it home.

The festival features 30 performers from the Memphis region in three different settings: the square’s outdoor stage, the showcase stage at Lafayette’s Music Room and a smaller stage at the Blue Monkey. Here is this year’s lineup…

  • Barbara Blue
  • Booker Brown
  • Cedric Burnside
  • David Evans
  • Davis Coen
  • Earl the Pearl
  • Eric Hughes Band
  • Guy Venable
  • Heather Crosse Band
  • John Nemeth
  • Kenny Brown
  • Leo Bud Welch
  • Little Boys Blue
  • Marcella and Her Lovers
  • Mark “Muleman” Massey
  • MBS Jam Band
  • Reba Russell
  • Richard Johnston
  • Ruby Wilson
  • Sharde and the Rising Stars Fife & Drum Band
  • Sons of Mudboy
  • Southern Avenue
  • Stax Music Academy Band
  • Super Chikan
  • Sweet Angel
  • Tameka “Big Baby” Goodman
  • Terry “Harmonica” Bean
  • Vince Johnson and The Plantation AllStars
  • Wampus Cats
  • Watermelon Slim
  • Zeke Johnson

Ticket info:

  • $25 Pre-Sale Wristband
    • Fri & Sat evening inside venues. Price increases to $30 after August 31st.
  • $50 Wristband
  • Fri & Sat evening inside venues AND a 1 year Memphis Blues Society Membership
  • Memphis Blues Society Members (must show Membership ID) for Fri & Sat evening inside venues.
  • Price increases to $25 after August 31st.
  • 1 wristband for VIP Party at Bar Louie Thursday, Sept. 29
  • Access to Overton Square VIP Area and all evening venues for the weekend
  • 1 year Memphis Blues Society Membership
  • $50 is tax‑deductible
  • $20 Presale MBS Member Wristband
  • $100 VIP Wristband

Buy your tickets here.

As excitement grows, so too does engagement in the Memphis Blues Society. Over the last four years, the organization has grown from holding a membership of 30 to boasting over 400. The 501(c)3 promotes local blues artists and regular events and jam sessions on Beale Street. For example, every Sunday evening, Free World plays a free show in the side room of Blues City Cafe, offering locals and tourists an opportunity to taste Memphis blues music.

The Blues isn’t just alive in Memphis – it’s aching to be heard.

 

By and photo credit: bonafidebluesfest.com/

Happy Labor Day!

by Melissa Thompson

Happy Labor Day to all of you!

While many still turn out to hear Labor Day speeches and attend parades, the purpose of the holiday has fallen way, and instead is usually viewed as the last hurrah of summer. I don’t know about you, but I find history fascinating and love to learn new facts all the time! Here are a few fun Labor Day facts for you to read while you’re enjoying your Labor Day not Laboring

  • Labor Day is: “a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.”
  •  
  • * Labor Day was first celebrated in New York City on Tuesday, September 5, 1882 and was organized by the Central Labor Union.
  •  
  • * The first state to celebrate and make Labor Day a legal holiday was Oregon in 1887.
  •  
  • * Canada began celebrating Labor Day in Toronto in 1872 and the holiday moved down to the United States a decade later.
  •  
  • * An act was passed by Congress on June 28, 1894 making the first Monday in September a legal holiday for the United States.
  •  
  • * During the late 1800’s Americans were working 12 hour days, seven days a week to earn just a basic living. Even children aged 5-6 were working in the factories and mines. Labor Day created an opportunity for all people to pause from that intensity and rest, reflect and relax.”
  •  
  • * Lastly but still fun and interesting, the NFL football season typically starts around the holiday weekend and most teams play their first official season game Labor Day weekend.

 

Whatever you are doing or wherever you are, I hope you are enjoying your long holiday weekend and taking a break from work!

The Housing Market is Doing Just Fine

by Melissa Thompson

The Housing Market is Doing Just Fine | Keeping Current Matters

There are some that think that housing affordability is a challenge. Historically, that’s not true. Others think that home prices are approaching bubble values. If we look back over the last sixteen years, that is also not the case. As a matter of fact, the numbers show that the U.S. residential real estate market is doing just fine.

Here are two articles and excerpts that make this point:

The Housing Market Is Finally Starting to Look Healthy – The NY Times

It has been an excruciatingly long time coming, but the housing sector in the United States is finally getting healthy. Thank millennials and thank homebuilders who are starting to produce more of the starter houses young people demand.”

Why the U.S. Housing Market Is Good and Getting Even Better – The Street

“Interest rates are so low now that a family can buy the median-priced U.S. home on income of less than $45,000 a year -- about $11,000 less than the median household income. And half of America's houses are cheaper than that.” 

There are those worried that all this positive talk resembles what was being said in 2004 and 2005. Jonathan Smoke, Chief Economist at realtor.com, explains the difference very simply but effectively:

“The havoc during the last cycle was the result of building too many homes and of speculation fueled by loose credit. That’s the exact opposite of what we have today.” (emphasis added)

 

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 407

Contact Information

Photo of Melissa Thompson Real Estate
Melissa Thompson
Crye-Leike Realtors
6525 N Quail Hollow Road
Memphis TN 38120
(901) 729-9526
(901) 756-8900
Fax: (901) 435-0620