Finding A New Nest: An Empty Nester’s Search for a Home

Finding a New Nest: An Empty Nesters Search for a New Home

Empty Nester. Lifestyle Living. Moving Down. Right Sizing...What best describes what you and what you’re looking for?

Like it or not, these are all just fancy marketing names for all you baby boomers looking for a new home to fit your new lifestyle. Whatever you or they call it, you’re just ready to shed the home that you raised your kids in for something more your current style

So what’s important to you in a new home? One misconception that we always hear from non empty-nesters (like their kids!) is often that this move is ONLY about one floor living so you can get around easier now or in the future. Don’t get us wrong, we know this is a big part of it, but we know that’s not the only driver! The fact is that you are looking for a location to capitalize on this new found freedom. We’ve helped dozens of empty nester buyers looking for a new home and most often, the number one drive in their search is location because they want to be surrounded by things to do. Restaurants, walking trails, shopping, etc. so they can take advantage of the time they used to spend on their kids. This might not be in every case, but we’re seeing it more often than not!

Of course, in addition to location, we know that you’ll be thinking about things like: 

  1. Function Living Spaces – One floor potentially or maybe a future elevator
  2. No or Low Maintenance – Lock it and Leave it! 
  3. Close to your kids: Lets face it, we might need you guys more than ever!

Now, How Do You Find It?

Even though you have the exact idea of what you might want, finding it is a different story!  The search can be difficult because of the lack of options and inventory. That’s often why people come to us because of our less conventional ways to go about the search! 

In fact, to make it a bit easier on you, we’ve outlined a few tips on how to go about your search:

Existing Homes:

Most Buyers start off searching for Existing Homes because it’s the path of least resistance. It would be ideal to find a ranch style home with one floor living, minimal steps and that’s fixed up enough that you won’t have to do much to it. However, you’ll see that the inventory of homes like this is slim. Take Montgomery for example. Of the 51 single family home listings in Montgomery, only 7 are ranches, and of those 7, only 3 are existing homes.

Townhomes & Condos:

Condo living is fantastic! You can lock it and leave it since there’s NO maintenance.  In areas like Montgomery, Blue Ash, Oakley, Hyde Park, there are quite a few new condo developments (and existing ones) to choose from. For instance, the Allora on Madison is an excellent example of a new community that has been a magnet for empty nester buyers. With low HOA fees, elevator options and located smack dab in the heart of Oakley, this development literally checks ALL boxes! 

As you look as these options though, there’s a few key items to consider: 

  1. HOA fees – These can range monthly from $100 to well over $600 so keep an eye on what they cost and what’s included!
  2. Functionality and size of your floor plan – If you’re coming from a larger single family home think about the culture shock of going from 4000 ft to 2000 ft.

In addition to the Allora, here’s a few links to some other options that are available now:

 

New Construction

We wouldn’t be called Build Collective if we didn’t mention at least a couple of new construction options! Take for example Orchard Trail in Montgomery. Designed for lifestyle living, this community caters to the empty nester crowd by designing ranch homes, an all inclusive HOA and maintenance fee and plenty of room for outdoor entertaining without the burden of taking care of more than you need.  

Things to keep in mind:

  1. Cost Per Square Foot – Ranches tend to be more expensive because all or most of the living is on the first floor!
  2. Lot Width – This is the most important feature to consider if you’re looking at lots! 
  3. Timing – Make sure you have adequate time to build, which can take anywhere from 6-10 months nowadays with the tight labor market

Here’s a Few Options to Consider:

Whichever option you choose, try to think through the transition and location. It’s also key to keeping an open mind. Sometimes the best options never cross your mind until they’re right in front of you! 

And, as you search, we’re hear to help. Having a good agent on your side is pivotal as they can find ferret out options for you and make your purchase MUCH smoother.

Download Our Guide to Moving Down to help you as well!

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Making the decision to buy or sell a home can be an overwhelming. The team at Build Collective, Coldwell Banker West Shell can help you understand the process and make sure you get the most for your home in the shortest amount of time. Contact us at 513.686.7676 to get your new home journey started!

Your Guide to Building A Home In Mason

Your Guide to Building A Home In Mason

Mason is a Hot Spot For New Construction!

We Break Down the Top 3 Options for Custom Homes

The Mason area continues to be a hot spot for new construction, and for good reason! With a top rated school district, an abundance of recreational outlets nearby, a wide variety of shopping and dining, and close proximity to I-71 and I-75, new home buyers consistently add Mason to their top choice for a new home. As the 2109 selling season goes into full swing, we wanted to give you a brief outline of three of the most popular New Home Communities in Mason.

Kensington

  • Site of Homearama 2019
  • Custom Homes from the $800s
  • Half Acre to One Acre Lots
  • Community Pool, Playground, and Gardens
  • Superb Location off of Fields Ertel Road

Vintage Oaks

  • Custom Homes from the $700s
  • Half Acre Home sites with Walkout Options
  • Water features throughout the Community
  • Mature trees & wooded views
  • Conveniently Location off of Duke Blvd

Long Cove

  • Prestigious Community
  • Custom Homes from the $800s
  • Elegant Clubhouse & Community Pool
  • Picturesque Waterways and Streetscape
  • Beautiful Entrances at Wilken and Snider

For more information, contact Mike Hines at 513.260.0424 or Jan Gerding at 513.608.3770 at Build Collective at Coldwell Banker West Shell. They can get you started on building your perfect home in 2019!

Townhome Living Is On the Rise

Townhome Living Is On the Rise

With land prices going up across the board along with building costs, townhome living has become increasingly attractive to all sorts of buyers. Townhome living is nothing new as they’ve been around for decades, but recently, options are becoming more and more prevalent.

Now, it might be obvious, but what is a townhome? If you Wikipedia it, the history of a townhome is quite interesting considering why people often decide to live in a town home:

In the past, “a townhouse was the city residence of a noble or wealthy family, who would own one or more country houses in which they lived for much of the year. From the 18th century, landowners and their servants would move to a townhouse during the social season.”

It’s funny to see that even in the past, people we’re attracted to townhomes because of the social component. That couldn’t more true today. Since townhomes are typically vertical in nature with multiple floors of living, they tend to be clusters with many units in one complex. This can be very desirable when located around vibrant and bustling areas where buyers are looking to capitalize on their surroundings rather than focus on maintenance of their homes.

And, with pricing going up across the board and demand for living options near these walkable districts at an all time high, townhomes are becoming a great option when zoning allows. In the near future, we see townhomes and more dense units hitting the market in an effort to create more “affordable” or workforce housing options.

So, lets take a look at some of the top townhome projects in the works near in Cincinnati.

BROADWAY BROWNSTONES in Loveland

Priced from $399,000 • 1,900 Sq. Ft. • Only 1 Unit Left!

The Broadway Brownstones are located directly on the Little Miami Bike Trail in Downtown Loveland. With an bustling downtown district with Breweries, restaurants, candy shots, and an awesome new jewelry shop (shout out to Welling and Co!), Loveland is a force to be reckoned with! Dont miss the chance to live at Broadway Brownstones.  Only One Unit Left… Builder Model! Check out the full website here

 

THE ALLORA ON MADISON in Oakley

Priced from $495,000 • 2,000 Sq. Ft.  • Only 4 Units Left!

The Allora has been one of the top selling townhome project in the Cincinnati area. It’s no surprise through given that it’s in the core of downtown Oakley next to St. Cecelia and steps from the Madtree, Crossroads, and pretty much every possible convenience you could ask for. Check out the available units here

 

 

 

PARK MANOR in Blue Ash

Priced from $600,000

Luxury living in the heart of Blue Ash!  Luxury, Convenience and Carefree living in a beautiful master planned community that offers something for everyone.  Learn more about the Park Manor Townhomes here!

 

If you find that townhome living sounds like the perfect solution for you, reach out to us!  We can give you more information on the featured townhomes above, or help you find another community that is perfect for you!

Inspections May Be the Most Important Step of the  Home Buying Process!

Inspections May Be the Most Important Step of the Home Buying Process!

So Just How Does the Inspection Process Work?

So you’ve put a contract in on a homes and now It is time for inspections.  You may think that the most important thing when negotiating the contract is the purchase price, but in our opinion it is the inspection process!

Hiring a certified home inspector is one of the best decisions you can make when buying a home. They are over 1,200 items that home inspectors look at during the inspection on your new home. Some of the biggest items are: structure, foundation, roof, plumbing, mechanicals and appliances. There are also other inspections that you can have done usually for an extra cost that include radon, termite, sewer and mold testing.
Buying a home is normally the largest investment that you make in your life so it is very important to have all of these items checked so you make a wise financial decision.
Can you imagine buying a house and not having an inspection done? Imagine a year later finding out you have major structural issues or that you need a new roof. Having an inspection done before purchasing a home can protect you for years to come on your new purchase!  If issues are found during the inspection, you as a buyer can negotiate items to be repaired or replaced by the seller.  The Seller is not obligated to fix any item, but it allows the buyer the option to reconsider the purchase or fix things before they move in.
This is why we feel the home inspection process is one of the most important steps when going through the home buying process. Don’t make the mistake of buying a new home without having an inspection performed!
Fall Market:  What to Expect

Fall Market: What to Expect

Did you realize that the Fall market is already here! It snuck up on us. It might not feel like it with these 90 degree days, but now that Labor Day has come and gone, we’re in the heat of the Fall market. Literally.
Over the years, we’ve seen an incredibly strong market in September and October because of lack of inventory and increasing demand. This year is no different, but there are some trends in the market that you’ll want to keep an eye on so you can see how they might effect your selling and buying plans.
To understand the market though, we first to explain how we view and track the local real estate market. We’ve all heard that real estate is all about location and that’s never been more true. We like to use the term “Hyper Local”. What does this mean? Well, each neighborhood has it’s own ecosystem if you will. Demand and supply can be different from one neighbor or another…heck, from one street to another.  Monthly, our Build Cincinnati team reviews the sales, listings and trends for each area we focus to understand the health of that market. We even go as far as breaking each area up by price point.
An example would be looking at Montgomery and Hyde Park. Below, you’ll find a quick breakdown of home sales and listings at different price points and their average days on market. By going hyper local, we can best advise our clients on how to position their homes or buying plans.
Montgomery
Less Than $400,000 – 10 Listings
$401,000 – $700,000 – 26 Listings (2 New Construction)
$700,000+ – 40 Listings (18 Resale or Completed Homes & 22 New Construction)
Hyde Park 
Less Than $400,000 – 28 Listings
$401,000 – $700,000 – 18 Listings
$700,000+ – 25 Listings
Most people are under the impression that each of these areas are Seller Markets, meaning the lack of inventory gives Seller’s the edge. That might be true some cases, but in many, there is actually a growing amount of inventory. Before you worry though, Cincinnati in general only has 2.1 month absorption rate. This means that if there were no new listings, all of the homes would be sold in 2.1 months (theoretically, of course). A balanced market in Cincinnati is 4.5-5 Months, so we’re still well below that.
Here’s what this means to you:
For Sellers: the market is strongHome prices are up 7.4% across Ohio. However, Sellers and Agents need to be care not to become over confident in a home’s ability to sell at any price. When pricing your home to sell, we need to be ever vigilant in finding that sweet spot on pricing. The first two weeks after listing are the most important and you only have one chance to do it right. We always arm our clients with list price range and of course, a suggested list price. When reviewing the competition and sales, be sure that you’re being objective.
For Buyers: Inventory is low in most cases, but there are great properties that come on the market (or we find through back channels) routinely! Our team is hungry to find new homes, lots and opportunities for our Buyers, but we all have to work harder than ever to find them. This means making yourself available as much as you can to see homes the moment they hit the market and being pre-approvaled!  We’ll be sure to take care of you on this front!!
Building Buyers: Cost is going up so get it now before it gets even more expensive to build! Over the past 12 months, the cost to build has gone up 8-10%. That’s purely the cost of materials and contractor work. Lumber, hardwood, labor, roofing, you name it! The longer you wait to build, the higher likelihood that the cost will go up even more. Land and lot opportunities are more difficult and more expensive to find too. If you’ve considered building, now might be the time to explore it a little more seriously.
With that, we’ll leave you with an interesting statement that sums up what many are seeing out there and to calm any of those that are throwing the term bubble around…
“We’re seeing the first indications that price appreciation may be slowing, but the underlying fundamental housing market conditions support a natural moderation of house prices rather than a sharp decline.” -Mark Fleming Chief Economist at First American

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