CENTURY 21 Atwood of Fergus Falls Blog: MN & ND Real Estate News

Century 21 Real Estate LLC is pleased to announce that Alan and Judi Olson of Century 21 Vista were presented with the President’s Producer Award at their annual awards banquet in Minneapolis on March 16, 2012. This award is bestowed upon an extraordinary group of individuals that have achieved both the Centurion level of production and the Quality Service Pinnacle Award in the same year, which is an affirmation  of  outstanding sales production and commitment to quality service to their customers. “We are thrilled to recognized Alan and Judi Olson’s work for this significant achievement”, said Rick Davidson, President and CEO, Century 21 Real Estate LLC.  “This is an outstanding honor since only a small percentage of agents in the United Stated receive

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  • Recently the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS announced that interest rates for a 30 year fixed mortgage were the lowest in 60 years.
  • In addition, the report cited that inventories of homes for sale were down to a 6.2 month supply.  6 months is considered a balance for supply vs. demand.
  • Minnesota unemployment is down to 5.6% which is below the national average.
  • Pending real estate sales in Minnesota are up 14.5%.
  • The housing affordability index is the highest ever which deals with household income vs. home prices.
  • Prices in Minnesota have been stable for the last 12 months.

These are all factors that have positively affected real estate sales.  Now that inventories are low, it is a better time for sellers to sell and of course low

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Surprisingly, sales of lake homes and cabins are always about 75% fewer than the sales of residential homes in Otter Tail County, even with our county having 1,000 lakes, more than any other county in the United States.  The dollar volume of lake home sales is only 40% less. Obviously, the average sale prices of lake homes are $150,000 higher at $257,000 where residential homes are at an average sale price of $107,000.

Reasons for the large number of residential sales are:  we have a good population base and low unemployment which makes Otter Tail a good county in which to live and work.  There is a good supply of residential homes right now which has had a softening effect on prices.  Lake home average sale prices have risen, however, due to the more

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By Alan Olson, Broker

This month’s column gives the reader an accurate snapshot of the lake home sales thus far this year in our multiple listing services.  It also shows the months of inventory available for purchase.  September and October closings are not reflected here but the sales have been off the charts.  Interestingly, sales have been closing within 1% of the assessor’s market value, which is highly different from the low prices of other regions in Minnesota.

My advice for buyers and sellers entering the market….use a professional full time real estate agent that knows not only the past comparables but one who knows the present ones and the trends.


Absorption Rate Report

September 1, 2011


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Century 21 Vista held their 3rd Annual Client Appreciation Picnic, Sunday, August 21, 2011 at the Lions Park on the shore of West Battle Lake.  Over 500 people attended the event, participating in a pork chop picnic, children's games, and entertainment.  Best of all, there were drawings valued at $8,000!  The grand prize winners of $2100 in cash were Chad and Sarah Overland of Alexandria, MN.  The winners of the "Vacation for 2" anywhere in the world were Jack and Jane Bertram, Tom and Barb Spaeth and Pam Phillips.  The event was sponsored by Century 21 Vista real estate agents and local partners.  Buyers and Sellers of sold real estate from August 2010 to August 2011 were present.  Will we see you there on August 19, 2012?

Alan Olson, Broker/Owner

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A second consecutive monthly increase in closed home sales in Minnesota is a promising indicator that residential real estate is moving in the right direction after a number of dismal years.  Closed Sales increased 33.5 percent in July 2011 when compared with July 2010.  Almost 1,700 additional transactions were closed in July when compared to a year earlier.  In reviewing statistics throughout the state, it is clear that most areas are rebounding nicely.  In fact, home sales for the last 12 months have incrased 33.5% in Minnesota.  Low interest rates, investor purchases and improving economic conditions are sighted as the primary reasons for the significant increases.  Minnesota's employment numbers have been better than the national figures which helps

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Sales for the first 7 months of 2011 were down 14%, according to Multiple Listing Statistics.  Alan Olson, Broker of Century 21 Vista said "we owe that primarily to lake home sales being off 29%."  The unseasonable weather in March and April kept the lake home buyers away, although sales have been very strong since then. 

It's hard to tell if we will catch up by year's end to last year's sales which were up 55%.  The bright spot is that those buyers are buying higher priced homes than last year.  The average sale price is up 10%.  Another interesting note is residential sales in the county are on par with 2009 and 2010 which were very good.  My advice for buyers and sellers entering the market.....use a professional full time real estate agent that

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The housing affordability rates have jumped in Otter Tail County this year 24.3% which is above the rest of Minnesota's increase of 15.2%.  That's good news for Otter Tail County buyers.  The rate measures median income, median pricing and interest rate. In addition, positive signs of the long awaited housing recovery may be on the horizon according to  the May Minnesota Housing Report released by the Minnesota Association of REALTORS. 

Many experts and those involved in the industry were optimistic about the numbers, especially the pending sales figure which was up 26.2% when compared to transactions in May 2010.  Pending Sales - contracts written but not closed - for Minnesota were up significantly in May, 2011.  However, many of the other indicators

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