general Charlotte

Profound Effects of Shutdown for US Mortgage Markets

us gov shutdownAfter the best year in real estate and lending since 2007, the 4th quarter is at risk due to the government shutdown.

Approved loans can probably move forward, but the next batch of loans, in application stages across the country are being held up for a variety of reasons, the first is lack of employees at the IRS to verify borrower income.

Today’s lender uses the IRS 4506 form on more than 90% of all loans to verify a borrower’s income. But that is not all.

The low down payment rural assistance loan provided by the USDA is also not operating on any level, even computer generated pre-approvals. So many rural sales and deals are currently derailed.

The FHA’s computer pre-approvals are working, but you aren’t going to be able to talk to anyone about the application. So far, the easy ones  are proceeding. The rest? Very slow or not at all.

VA? In the best of times loans guaranteed by the Veterans Administration can be difficult, today? I am worried for veterans an active military members trying to get a loan through the VA.

The Bottom Line

Think of the mortgage market as a giant superhighway of loans, 12 lanes wide and moving fast. Cars (loans) stretch as far as your eye can see. But 50 miles ahead (call it 20 days of shutdown)  there is a horrible, in this case avoidable, accident. All the cars are now stopped or moving at a crawl.  While the cars are still trickling past the accident, the resulting log jam will quickly cause people to park their car (loan) and walk away. This is how we go from a traffic jam to gridlock in the US mortgage market. Without the ability to secure financing, the mortgage and real estate industry comes to a crashing halt.

Each new home purchase and loan closing generates an estimated $50,000 in economic growth.  We learned in 2008 that as the real estate market goes, so goes our economy.   Do not be fooled by those saying “its not a big deal.”  It is a big deal; very big indeed.  This is not a partisan issue.  Americans oppose a government shutdown tied to the ACA (Obamacare) 72% to 22% according to Bloomberg News.  This is a staggering figure! I can’t think of an issue, including health care, that is worth taking a wrecking ball to our economy, and if this dysfunction drags into the debt ceiling “debate”,  the world economy with it.



Photo source: NPCA on Flickr

Rocketing Sales Continue- Builders WE NEED More Inventory

Duke Energy Headquarters Charlotte Charlotte home sales continued their climb, surpassing sales in April 2012 by 38%.* Home prices remain in the 2004 price per square foot range, even as average home price- and size has grown. .

Certain markets, in town locations, and other popular spots in the under $200,000 market, inventories are at 2 months, ridiculously low  levels.

21% of the homes sold were off the market in 15 days or less- the best deals don’t last.

Distressed sales, short sales and foreclosures represented 17% of the market here in April, continuing a downward trend.

 Can’t read the reports? Click the graphs to enlarge. The red line is months of inventory, measured on the right vertical.

Charlotte Real Estate Price Range Report | April 2013




Market softness remains in the highest price ranges, we had an  April  closing in Southpark area for 1.325M, or 93% of list. 19% of Southpark area homes sold at or above their List price in April. Wow. 

Charlotte Real Estate Zip Code Report | April 2013



Geographically, as each ring from the city, measured in bands that are a mile or tw0 wide, we see inventory grow  as the market rebuilds from the center out, and from lower prices to high.

Months of Inventory | Buyer/Seller Market Key


 *All statistics are courtesy of the Carolina MLS. We use a slightly adjusted coreGreater Charlotte Area  so our numbers may differ from the CMLS’s larger area.

Staying on top of the market is just one part of our job, but all real estate is local, if you are a buyer, know that we know prices! And we do the research. If you are a home Seller? Anyone can tell you where the market has been, but where is your neighborhood’s  market going?

We are also part of the MetLife relocation team.

Sellers, the McDonald Group + Wilkinson + ERA Relo = More Eyes on Your Home. Call us today to get started- 704-351-1519

 Considering a move to Charlotte?  Get your FREE Charlotte relocation guide full of useful information on area neighborhoods, schools, taxes & things to do:

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* All statistics for this report were derived from the Carolina MLS.

Uptown Condos That Re Sell

So you work Uptown, your lease is coming up, and you are doing well.  What are your choices?

Typically, the first choices would be Uptown and  SouthEnd, maybe NODA and Dilworth, it depends whether you are looking for walking distance to work, light rail, or a short bike or car ride.    Most of the condos spiked in price in 2006-2008, and crashed in 2009-2010.  But they are coming back!

This week the Avenue, Trademark and 230 S Tryon- all three have excellent center city locations, good to great amenities, and different levels of finish. I love the amenities and entry at the Avenue, and I like the concrete ceilings here though some do not.  Trademark offers a more fully finished interior with 230 S Tryon, possibly being the best of class.  have a look for yourself

The Avenue

[idx-listings tract="Avenue Condominiums" propertytypes="714" orderby="DateAdded" orderdir="DESC" count="5" showlargerphotos="true"]


[idx-listings tract="Trademark" propertytypes="714" orderby="DateAdded" orderdir="DESC" count="5" showlargerphotos="true"]


230 S Tryon

[idx-listings tract="230 South Tryon" propertytypes="714" orderby="DateAdded" orderdir="DESC" count="5" showlargerphotos="true"]

Have you seen some of these? Like to add add a comment? Please do!

We represent Buyers and Sellers, but never at  the same time! Call Terry today if you are interested in Listing your condo for sale, 704-390-6221.  Liek to Buyo ne of these? just schedule a showing, by phone or email. Thanks!


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The Ultimate Charlotte Home Search Tool

February 8, 2013

Charlotte’s Happiest House Hunters Are Here!

You are about to be signed up on the Top Charlotte Home Search Engine, the ultimate home search tool, let me show you why.

Large HD Pictures, Flexible Search Options, Similar Properties… Check out the images below.  What’s Way cool is when you use the map view- you can find houses, then get background data on foreclosures, walk scores, popular areas and more. Quick signup here

Of course you can save listings, and set your own personal listing alerts, but check out the LARGE PICTURES (HD online and much larger onscreen)
You can Search by Neighborhood, by school, or use the Option feature  to search by style of home, or home features~basements, or waterfront, foreclosures- just about any keyword

This lets you customize your search to a fine level, if you prefer a map view, change the Display from Thumbs (thumbnails) to Map. Check out the Background Data to search for Popular locations, Foreclosure and short sale hotspots. Next to Background is an option window to let you search without leaving the map

Another favorite feature is  Similar Properties- you can quickly checkout other similar property and others in neighborhood.  It is easy and powerful!

Crazy Good isn’t it?

At any time you may follow the links and after a few details it will ask for a signup. Or sign up here and start using the most advanced home search tool on the web!  Mobile? Just add your phone number for a quick download for a powerful mobile app.

Call today if you need immediate help, 704-351-1519. Or call  Terry Direct at 704-390-6221

Or, if you have already been signed up by a home inquiry, check your e-mail for logins, or simply go to the site and reset your password..

Updated daily, is is up to date like only a local website can be. If you try it,  you will agree, it is the best on the web!
Happy House Hunting from the McDonald Group
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