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Appen Media Group:

Real Estate Report June Special Section


June 2013

News and Advertising for New Homes • Realtors • Developers • Commercial Properties • and more

A L P H A R E T TA • C U M M I N G • C H E R O K E E • D U L U T H • F O R S Y T H • G W I N N E T T • J O H N S C R E E K • M I LT O N • R O S W E L L • S U WA N N E E

Ride the mini-bubble, but be ready! We are indeed in the middle of a mini-bubble as houses are selling faster than ever. But, there is a convergence of several factors creating this “perfect storm”: 1. Prices are still increasing but not as fast as income levels. 2. Inventory is extremely low. 3. Mortgage rates are still at historic lows as the Feds try to keep economic growth on the right path. Like all bubbles, this one will come to an end. Even

though we frequently see homes overvalued, buyers still get caught up in the heat of the moment and are bidding up prices unnecessarily. Keep in mind, appraisers count on comps amongst other factors

to determine value and escalating prices and while bidding wars are nice, it still must appraise at the right amount. Are you ready to ride the wave? Here’s what you need to do: 1. Ask yourself if your house is really ready to go on the market. Houses that are READY are selling quickly. The vast majority of home buyers, regardless of market conditions, lack vision when it comes to seeing a

Stephanie Butler and Lisa Swayne “diamond in the rough.” 2. You need to be completely transparent and truthful with yourself. Have a trusted friend or family member view your home and be brutally honest. 3. Why leave money on the table? We want sellers to be absolutely prepared before that “Coming Soon” sign goes up. By engaging with the open market before your house is ready, you could be leaving money on the table and not getting full price for your investment. The formula hasn’t changed: it’s a price war and a beauty contest. We are winning the price war, but make no mistake, the beauty of a home is what gets buyers bid-

Your Distinctive Home Here Call today to discuss how I will position your luxury property in front of your perfect audience. Evelyn Lewis-Wilson 770-905-5089 evelyn.lewiswilson@era.com ERA SUNRISE REALTY 980 Birmingham Rd. Suite 606 Milton, Ga 30004

ding. The Butler/Swayne Team was recognized by Prudential Real Estate Affiliates for their sales success in 2012, placing in the top 1% of all agents worldwide in overall sales and ranking in the Top 5 Team for Prudential Georgia Realty. They offer an extensive knowledge of the communities where they live in, work in and serve, including Alpharetta, Milton, Roswell and the Sandy Springs area. With over 20 years combined experience, clients look to the team for knowledge and insights. They have been highlighted on HGTV and in USA Today, the Atlanta Business Chronicle, the Atlanta Journal Constitution and Northside Woman. Learn more at http:// www.butlerswayne.com.


northfulton.com

REAL ESTATE REPORT • Sponsored Section

June 2013 3

Fabulous Forsyth/Fulton County Locations!

Live in these Prestigious Counties with Wonderful School Systems, Parks and More!

How landscaping can impact home values Curb appeal is essential when selling a home. It’s the homeowner’s opportunity to make a great FIRST impression. A home with lackluster landscaping or an exterior in desperate need of a fresh coat of paint will likely be unappealing to prospective buyers and ultimately could affect the home’s potential value. Landscaping is typically associated with lawns, trees, bushes and flowers. But today, other items such as fire pits, decks, patios, waterfalls, swimming

pools and outdoor lighting…are all large factors that could add to the resale value of a home. Big factors here in Alpharetta, Milton and Roswell! According to a recent study by Lawn and Landscape magazine, about twothirds of homeowners say they’ll get less than 60 percent of their landscaping investment back when they sell the home. Thus, homeowners need to consider how long they’ll be in the home and

See LANDSCAPE, Page 3

Fulton County Cedar Park (Milton) 678-867-6782 Homes from the Low $500’s

Forsyth County Waterstone Falls (Cumming) 678-341-6479 Homes from the High $300’s

Post Preserve (Cumming) 770-569-8135 Homes from the High $200’s

Madison (Cumming) 678-772-7201 Homes from the $350’s

Ravens Ridge

Edgebrook at James Creek (Cumming) 678-777-7187 Homes from the Low $300’s

The Summit at Shiloh (Cumming) 678-341-6479 Coming Soon!

(Cumming) 770-781-1208 Homes from the $350’s

Visit ryland.com for more information. In the Atlanta division, prices, plans and specifications are subject to change without notice. Photographs and or renderings are for illustrative purposes only. Information believed to be accurate but not warranted. See Sales Counselor for details, and a RA1279 complete list of HouseWorks® features. © 2013 The Ryland Group, Inc.


northfulton.com

REAL ESTATE REPORT • Sponsored Section

June 2013 4

Buyers can transform their new Ryland home at the My Style Design Center Ryland Homes has been building for more than 45 years and is one of the nation’s largest homebuilders. Ryland offers everything the buyer needs to make their home-buying experience one they’ll remember with a smile. From the financing to closing, they’ve got it all covered. The My Style Design Center is one of the most exciting and rewarding aspects of purchasing a new Ryland home. Buyers can transform their home into a reflection of themselves by choosing from hundreds of products including flooring, cabinets, countertops, lighting and other décor upgrades to create a home that’s just right for them. Currently, Ryland Homes builds single-family homes and townhomes ranging from the $200s-$500s in Cobb, North Fulton, Cherokee, Forsyth, Gwinnett and DeKalb Counties. Visit a Ryland Homes community today or visit our website at ryland.com.

It’s a Seller Market!...Not so fast. Time for sellers to celebrate, home prices are up and inventory is down. It’s not that simple. While the market has improved, there are still numerous challenges; fickle buyers, home inspections, vigorous underwriters and the scariest of all, appraisals. Selling a home, and buying for that matter, is more complicated than ever. Depending on the area, current home price gains are averaging in the 10-15% range but that is not the same as “values”. Home values are determined by appraisers analyzing recent area sales of comparable properties. Recent sales are usually defined as sales within the last 4-6 months. And, and “area comparables” can mean homes located within a 1-2 mile radius, often the same elementary school district and within +/10% finished square footage. If it sounds like the appraisers are looking for a needle in a haystack, you’ve got the right idea. Of course, an experienced Realtor® will do their

Landscape: Continued from Page 4 whether to make shortterm updates (for sales appeal) or plan for the long haul (enjoyment for themselves). Homeowners should ask themselves several questions when it comes to the quality of their home’s green space. Is the landscaping attractive enough to get the prospective buyer to walk through the door? Keep the design simple and contemporary. Could the landscaping provide cost savings? Landscaping that requires little or no water to maintain is very desirable here in the south. Is the landscaping energy – efficient for the home overall? For example, it’s a good idea

homework in providing data to help validate a seller’s home value. Buyers, who have been enjoying the last five years of a “buyer’s market”, create another potential barrier to sale. Many homes are going under contract within 1-2 days and buyers are making snap decisions without really considering all factors of the purchase. So, we are starting to see a few more contract terminations. Unrealistic buyer expectations regarding concessions and lengthy repair lists contribute to the volatility of deals. And, who are underwriters and where did they come from? These folks are the lenders’ eyes and ears and, they are very (very) particular about the properties being purchased. And, yes they take a close look at buyers, too. So, to say, it’s complicated, is an understatement. Today’s market requires an ally. Now is the time to find yourself an experienced, fullservice Realtor®. –Eve Jones Harry Norman

to plant trees in a place where they block the sun while adding beauty to the home. Are trees planted a safe distance from the home and are they healthy and well maintained? Really important when we have had so much wet weather. Weak, old or damaged trees planted too close to a home need to be removed BEFORE the home goes on the market. Just one less thing a new homeowner will have to do and shows that the present homeowner has taken steps to ensure safety around the home. Jody White’s team provides access to the best teams in the industry to assure your home is ready to show, inside and out! Jody White, Atlanta Fine Homes, 404-966-7992. –Jody White


northfulton.com

REAL ESTATE REPORT • Sponsored Section

June 2013 5

The Villas of Johns Creek Nearing Sellout, New Pricing and Deals Remain Nineteen homes are already sold so far this year at The Villas of Johns Creek, which means fewer and fewer opportunities to experience maintenance-free living remain in this gated community of European style villas and single-family detached homes in the heart of Johns Creek. To keep the momentum going and sell the neighborhood out by the end of the year, new special pricing and incentives mean every home sold in this Epcon Communities neighborhood now comes loaded with finishes typically considered upgrades. Starting just this month, ALL homes include hardwood floors through-

goes beyond the great value and quality of included finishes. You’ll also find something extremely rare in real estate; single-family detached 2-story homes with full maintenance-free services. And the community is NOT age restricted. So instead of spending time mowing or mulching the yard, or worrying about fixing an old roof, residents here spend their newfound free time relaxing in the sun by the heated pool, in the clubhouse playing cards with new neighborhood friends, or grilling out on their exterior, private courtyards—the crown jewel in this truly rare find. Of this type of home, Miller says, “It’s nearly

many buyers who regularly drive down Abbotts Bridge Road remark they never even knew the neighborhood existed. And equally important, The Villas of Johns Creek has available inventory. But there are fewer and fewer floorplans left. Builder Tylar Bacome says, “We kind of saved the best for last in terms of size. We’ll finish with our largest single-family 2-story homes and people absolutely love the bright, airy open feeling and abundance of windows that let in natural light. We also have a small number of our largest attached ranch quad homes left so there truly is

something for everyone, at every price.” The fact that The Villas of Johns Creek even has inventory available is just one more reason Miller says the decision to buy one of these unique homes is easy. But Miller says, don’t wait too long. “Inventory is at near record low levels, with very few opportunities for homebuyers looking for immediate housing. Interest rates are beginning their slow creep up and inflation is on the rise. This remarkable window of opportunity will be gradually closing to many buyers as the economy continues to rebound.” Come tour this beautiful

Epcon Communities neighborhood, enjoy refreshments and light snacks and see firsthand why so many people are falling in love with The Villas of Johns Creek during a special Open House on Saturday June 15th from Noon-5:00pm. 10722 Abbotts Bridge Road, Johns Creek, GA 30097. 678-957-1205. Hours are M-Sat 11a-6p; Sun 125:00pm or hop online and head to www.thevillasofjohnscreek.com The Villas of Johns Creek is an Epcon Communities Neighborhood, and part of a nationwide network of builders founded in 1986.

Special Open House Event Sat. June 15 Noon-5pm

Promenade floor plan includes master suite

out the kitchen, dining and living rooms, stainless appliances, granite kitchen and master bath counters and much more. The Villas of Johns Creek has just joined forces with Condominium and New Home Marketing expert Pauline Miller, and her BRIGHTSTAR new home sales team with Keller Williams Realty. Miller and her expert staff are responsible for more than 1-Billion dollars in sales in the last decade, but even with all that experience she calls the included finishes in each and every home at The Villas of Johns Creek, “Unprecedented.” Miller adds, “Not only are these new homes priced nearly $100,000 below nearby neighborhoods, buyers are receiving FREE premium interior appointments, upgraded kitchens and baths and finished bonus rooms.” The reason The Villas of Johns Creek is selling so quickly

SPECIAL

unheard of, and like discovering Utopia. It would be like shopping on a dating site and finding “Extremely Good Looking, Perfect Condition, Unattached and zero maintenance.” Isn’t that what everyone wants?” The Villas of Johns Creek is also extremely convenient to nearly everything you’d need. Residents here walk on the sidewalk to the next door shopping center to buy groceries, grab a bite to eat, get their hair done or make a quick stop at the pharmacy. You wouldn’t know the neighborhood is near the hustle and bustle of activity at Abbotts Bridge and Medlock Bridge Roads thanks to lush landscaping that camouflages the pool and beautifully appointed Clubhouse complete with fitness room, kitchen, billiards and TV room. The 63-home neighborhood also sits “below grade” so

TREE SERVICE 150OFF

$

Any job of $1500 or more. Cannot combine with other offers. Expires 6-30-13

• Punctual • Professional • Reliable • Competitive

250OFF

$

Any job of $3500 or more. Cannot combine with other offers. Expires 6-30-13

Come see for yourself why The Villas of Johns Creek sold 7 homes in just one month. 19 Sold so far in 2013! New Pricing & Sales Staff • Not age restricted • Move-In Ready • Now offering single family detached AND attached ranch homes • Condominium services on all homes – no yard work or exterior repairs! • Northview High School: #1 High School District in the State of Georgia

• Patented, award-winning designs and floorplans • Custom options including bonus rooms, outdoor fire pits and much more • Conveniently located in the heart of Johns Creek

RUCKER

LANDSCAPING Call: Tad Carter 678.648.2012 Many Local References

Monday - Saturday: 11 am - 6 pm • Sunday: 12 noon - 5 pm 10722 Abbotts Bridge Rd • Johns Creek, GA 30097 • 678-957-1205 • thevillasofjohnscreek.com


northfulton.com

REAL ESTATE REPORT • Sponsored Section

June 2013 6

Navigating the Real Estate Market with Expert Guides It’s a picture of bliss. Jim and Sally Smith recently bought their first home. After saving for a few years and living thriftily, they had put aside a nest egg to buy their own home. It is a modest brick home with three bedrooms, a small yard, and the type of charm that befits a young couple in love. Fast forward five years and the Smith’s are ready to sell due to their growing family. Their home backs up to a busy street, the yard is too small for most buyer’s taste and what was once charming is now just deferred maintenance. The Smith’s would have benefitted from the advice of an expert when considering this home to purchase and they definitely need sound advice when selling. The value of having an expert in real estate is far more than just saving time and money. Potential concerns can be allayed when choosing a Harry Norman, Realtor, such as: • knowing if now is this the right time to buy or sell • securing your home when selling • ensuring the right price in a rising market • aggressive negotiating • providing awareness of uncommon, but costly, home or neighborhood related issues • having the right connections to sell your home at the optimum terms or having the connections to find you the perfect home The national survey, 2012 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, revealed that 88% percent of sellers utilized a real estate agent and 89 percent of buyers purchased their home through a real estate agent a share that steadily increased from 69 percent in 2001. Peace of mind, security, saving time, and adding value are all driving forces behind hiring a Realtor. In 2013, in the North Fulton area, Harry Norman is #1

in sales volume and units. We aren’t the biggest company but our results are clear. If you need a recommendation for an agent or if you would like more information about a home in

your area, please call me directly at 770-594-4901. By: Jenni Bonura, Managing Broker, Harry Norman, REALTORS®, North Fulton Office Jenni.bonura@harrynorman.com


June 2013 Real Estate Report