Nashville: A Rising Global City

Well, just what is a “global city?”

According to Wikipedia:

global city (also called world city or sometimes alpha city or world center) is a city generally considered to be an important node in the global economic system. The concept comes from geography and urban studies and rests on the idea that globalization can be understood as largely created, facilitated, and enacted in strategic geographic locales according to a hierarchy of importance to the operation of the global system of finance and trade.

It would be a lot simpler to call it “a place where the world wants to be!”

Nashville definitely falls into that category.

Global Trade Magazine just named Nashville among the top 50 cities in the US for Global Trade.  CLICK HERE

International Business is being conducted all around us and has become a significant factor in our area economy.  You will find a lot of information on the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce website HERE.

In my 13 years of selling new homes, I have been involved in many sales to international buyers, with each bringing new cultures to our region.  Many arrive because of political unrest in their home countries while others are here to pursue new opportunities.

Regardless of reason, Nashville is a true destination.  Nashville is where the world wants to be.

And when you get here, we have a brand new home waiting at one of our Ole South neighborhoods.

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, Gallatin, and Spring Hill, Tennessee.

Nashville New Homes: The “Short Sale” can of worms.

I was showing one of our brand new Ole South homes this week to a first-time home buyer.  They loved the home and all of its many features, especially the fact that everything was NEW and under warranty too.

They had learned through others that new homes offered the best value for the money, and that in most cases, a new home could be purchased for the same price, or even less, than an older resale home comparable in size and features.  They had looked at other resales, and told me everything that was important to them, even the price range.  Well guess what?  We have the perfect home nearing completion!

This particular home was $169,990, complete with all appliances and closing costs paid.  Using THDA’s Great Start program for first-time homebuyers, their monthly payment, yes PITI, would be approximately $1153 with zero cash out of pocket at closing.  If they chose to place their own down-payment of approximately $5950, their monthly payment would drop to approximately $1076. 

They really liked the -0- down option, but developed a perplexing look on their faces.  They really wanted a NEW home, but there was another home, similar in size, just 2 miles away they had seen online.  It was listed for $84,900.  It was a “short sale.”

They asked, “Just what does that mean?”   I explained the basic process where the bank would hopefully agree to allow the current owner to sell the home for less than the bank was owed on the property.  “You mean to say the bank is going to let them sell that home for 84,900?”  No, not necessarily.  “Then why is it listed for that price?”

Great question.  And we Realtors know the answer.  It is just like fishing.  We know the list price is just to attract a prospect, who will then be encouraged to make an offer, which the bank, at some unknown point in time, will accept or counter.  We all know that in most cases, the bank will not approve a listing price on a pre-foreclosure home until an offer of some kind is on the table.  The general public does NOT know that.

So, in the meantime, those shopping for homes receive a unrealistic picture of home values.  Neighborhoods suffer.  Those trying to sell their homes without financial difficulty suffer.  Zillow’s “z-estimates” seem to pick up on the suffering too, lowering those home values that are automatically calculated.  People believe those values because they saw it on “the internet.”

Okay, let’s go ahead and open the can of worms.

 The “short sale” can be a great alternative to foreclosure and I know many Realtors that are very successful negotiating the sale of homes in this situation.  It can be a win-win situation for all involved, but only if extraordinary levels of patience can be applied.

Let’s be serious.  Wouldn’t our whole real estate economy be better off if a property could not be listed at an arbitrary price that is basically pulled out of the sky?  

Many will disagree, but ANY home listed for sale on our MLS should be able to be purchased at the price listed.  Period. 

Why can’t our MLS require all short sales to be classified a separate way without a list price, followed by the instructions?   Or, if a price has to be present, enter $1.00.  At least that way, the playing field is more level.  I know there are data fields already for short sale notations, but that still leaves the “pie-in-the-sky” listing price.  Simply put, it is “bait and switch.”  

Again, there are many great Realtors that specialize in “short sales.”  If you would like a recommendation, please feel free to contact me anytime.

Bad things happen to good people all the time.  If you know anyone that has suffered a 30% drop in income or more, that may need assistance in avoiding a foreclosure or short sale, don’t forget about THDA’s newest program, www.keepmytnhome.org.

And always remember, better times are ahead.

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee.

Nashville New Homes: Through the eyes of a homebuyer

You know the saying, “can’t see the forest for the trees.”  Yeah, that one.  There is a lot of truth in that cliche, and the solution is to take a few steps back and view things from a different perspective.

This week, we’ve been filming new TV spots of our new homes and neighborhoods throughout the Greater Nashville area for Home Center Network.  With pictures being worth a thousand words, a TV spot must be priceless,  especially through the eyes of a new home buyer.

I’ve always known our new homes and neighborhoods in Nashville, Smyrna, Murfreesboro, Spring Hill, and Clarksville offer the best new home values in all of Middle Tennessee, but this week has opened my eyes to see way beyond that.  They are also beautiful!  And even more so, the closer you look.

From the “resort-lifestyle” offered in Puckett Station and Scottish Glen, to the charming craftsman styled homes of Evergreen Farms, Ole South offers something for everyone desiring a new home in Murfreesboro.

In Smyrna, the maintenance-free convenience of Lee Crossing townhomes are unmatched by any others.  Our Belmont neighborhood is expanding into a new phase of homesites, in the best new school district of the area.

In Nashville/Davidson County, look no further than Ole South!  

One of our most successful neighborhoods, Barnes Crossing, is almost sold out and completed, with only 6 homes under construction remaining.  Close to Nippers Corner, Lenox Village, Brentwood/Cool Springs, and downtown Nashville, you will appreciate the affordable convenience of this community.   Just around the corner, you will find Rivendell Woods of Cane Ridge, offering a great selection of traditional homes and town homes.

Preserve at Old Hickory offers a wide selection of traditional homes and also offers maintenance-free townhomes in the adjoining Old Hickory Commons.  And we have special-purchase opportunities in the communities of Spencer Hill and Old Hickory Hills too!  Seen any brand new 3 bedroom homes with garages from 110,000 lately?  What about new 4 bedroom homes under 150,000?  You will at Ole South!

For those wishing to live in Williamson County, we offer ALL BRICK homes from the low 200’s in Benevento East, with another location coming soon.  Just around the corner is Meadowbrook and Cobblestone, offering a village of maintenance free town homes and traditional homes from the low 100’s.

The best values in the Greater Nashville area can now be found in Clarksville too!   A new family moves in as fast as the homes are completed, so no TV spots there yet!

We’ll finish up all of the filming this week and hopefully have our new neighborhood spots running in several weeks.  Until then, take time to visit our many new home neighborhoods today and see the beauty through your own eyes!

Find out why thousands of Tennesseans are proud to say:

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee

Nashville New Homes: The “Occupancy After Closing Agreement”

Wait a minute!  When you purchase a NEW home, there is no need for an “Occupancy After Closing Agreement” …. right?

RIGHT!  When you purchase a NEW HOME from Ole South in the Greater Nashville area, to include Cane Ridge, Antioch, Smyrna, Murfreesboro, Spring Hill, and now Clarksville, you get your keys the minute you sign the closing documents!

You can move in immediately!

That’s right…you don’t have to wait for anyone to move out!  You don’t have to worry about swapping keys.  You don’t have to worry about the home being damaged during the “moving-out” process, and you don’t have to worry about everything staying that is supposed to stay.

When purchasing a pre-owned home, these are all points to consider.  With today’s volatile economy, anything can happen and delay a closing.  Most sellers are hesitant to move all of their stuff prior to closing without a substantial deposit.  They don’t want to be left on the street if the closing is delayed, or in some cases declined at the last minute.

And buyer’s of pre-owned home need to be concerned as well.  What if the sellers do not move out timely?  What if they take things with them that are part of the deal?  Even worse, what if something happens to the property and the seller’s contents?  Who really is responsible?  All of those concerns should be properly addressed at the time of contract.

Just think back to May of 2010.  Pretend you had just closed on your home purchase and gave the sellers a week to move out before assuming posession.  Then comes the great flood.  Your home has two feet of water in it and all of the seller’s stuff is ruined.  Even though you own it, you are technically not yet the owner-occupant.  You have insurance on your contents, but its not your stuff floating around.  Even if the sellers had not cancelled their policy, would their insurance company still pay the claim with a wagging tail knowing their policy holder did not own the property?  Lots and lots of complications.  Situations like this, although rare, do happen.

You, the buyer, might also have everything loaded and on the way only to find out there is a complication in the title work and your loan cannot close on time.  Can you say “MOTEL?”

When you purchase a new home from Ole South, you can cast all concerns to the side!  Our purchasing process is simple, seamless, and reliable.  We simply do not miss closing dates, unless you venture outside of our process with unknown lenders.

Through Ole South Financial, you will receive the very best financing program available and all of your closing costs are paid!  No surprises.  No hidden fees.

And yes, ZERO DOWN financing is still available for first time buyers.

 And the best part….. when you finish signing the closing documents, you get YOUR keys to YOUR NEW HOME and can move whenever you feel like it!

Doesn’t it make sense to look at new homes first?  Our model homes are open daily and anytime by appointment.

 

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee

Nashville New Homes: Bad economic news?….Another great opportunity for Tennessee!

Every time you turn on the national news, or read a national headline, there is negative news about the economy, specifically the housing market.   Many prospective buyers hear this news loud and clear, and sustain their “wait it out” philosophy.  Why?

Because no one else is talking!   I saw a great facebook post this week of a quote by Anthony J. D’Angelo, “If you have time to whine and complain about something, then you have time to do something about it.”

Yes we do!   It is our responsibility as Realtors to communicate the positive to everyone, not just those already searching for a new home, but those that should be.  Let’s start now:

Right now, low interest rates are resulting from a lackluster national economy.  Every day the overall economic news leans toward “bad” is one more day that a home buyer can take advantage of unfathomable interest rates.

From the Wall Street Journal….”Based on incomes, this is as affordable as it gets,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics. “If you can get a loan, these are pretty good times to buy.”

It truly is a great time to buy.  Not just because of low interest rates, but because of the programs that are available.  In this world, especially in this Congress, loan procedures are always subject to change.  Here is one potential change looming on the horizon that we have the opportunity to do something about:

https://realtorparty.realtoractioncenter.com/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=1653

There are areas of the country that are suffering in this economy.  But others are striving, and those areas are attracting jobs and economic activity much like a magnet.  We are blessed that  Tennessee is one of these areas!

http://www.bizjournals.com/nashville/news/2011/06/13/tennessee-no-6-for-2010-economic-growth.html

The Clarksville/Ft.Campbell area is a magnet all by itself, bringing industry that is thinking outside the box in attracting workers.  Check out a unique approach from Hemlock Semiconductor:

Click here to learn more about Hemlock’s opportunities:  http://www.clarksvillenow.com/pages/10125186.php?

And less than 50 miles away, Nashville just keeps on retaining and creating job opportunities, as reported in the Nashville Business Journal:

http://www.bizjournals.com/nashville/news/2011/06/14/employment-outlook-in-nashville-among.html

And there is even more encouragement for young adults to begin their careers in Nashville, creating many potential “first-time buyers.” 

http://www.bizjournals.com/nashville/news/2011/06/20/nashville-a-top-city-for-young-adults.html

Education in Middle Tennessee is also in the national spotlight!  Four Middle Tennessee High Schools are ranked among the top 500 in the nation.  Below are the Tennessee schools on the list and their nationwide ranking:

          Hume-Fogg Academic High School of Nashville, #33

          Brentwood High School, #100

          Ravenwood High School of Frranklin, #284

          Page High School of Franklin, #494

The above facts are just a few examples of evidence that “Tennessee is happening”   and attracting more attention and activity, just like that magnet!   When you plan an evening on the town, you more than likely select a place that you have heard great things about, right?   Businesses and relocating families are the same way.

Tennesseans, let’s join forces and get the word out on the economy in our great state!

When you are searching for a new home, you will hopefully consider one home builder that has been providing the area’s best new home values for over 25 years:

http://www.bizjournals.com/nashville/feature/ResBuilders-061711-1.html

We at Ole South appreciate everyone’s support and continue to be optimistic about life in the Great State of Tennessee.  We invite everyone to visit our model homes and neighborhoods, as well as our website, www.OleSouth.com, to discover why thousands of homeowners are proud to say:

     

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee

    

Nashville New Homes: Work Equity as your New Home Downpayment?

What is the one thing that everyone in this world has in common?   A FUTURE.  

That’s right…everyone has a future of some kind.   Although there are no guarantees in life, there are steps each one of us can take to make our future more stable and secure.  Owning a home is one such step that everyone can position themselves to take.  Your future really can be in your own hands.

Home mortgage criteria has changed a lot over the recent years, but that doesn’t mean it has to be more difficult to purchase a home.  It just means you have to provide more proof of your ability to be a responsible homeowner. 

FHA loans are the most widely used programs, where 3.5% of the purchase price is required as a downpayment, without exception. 

WAIT A MINUTE…. aren’t there ZERO DOWN home mortgages?  Technically, NO…. but actually…. YES! 

In Tennessee, there are loan programs where the Tennessee Housing Development Agency (www.THDA.org) will grant first-time buyers up to 4% of the purchase price to be used toward the downpayment and/or closing costs. 

If the seller of the property agrees to pay your closing costs, which Ole South will, you can use the THDA Great Start grant for your downpayment and administrative fees.   How does THDA do that?  What is the catch?

There is no catch.  The fixed interest rate for loans using the downpayment grants are slightly higher than those FHA loans with your actual down-payment.   If used responsibly, the Great Start program can be a very useful tool in financial planning. 

With today’s historicaly low interest rates, the money you would normally put down can be used to pay off other debts with higher interest rates.  A trusted mortgage professional can help you evaluate your options.  I happen to know many, so please let me know if you would like to know more.

There are other ways in addition to THDA to secure a downpayment.  You may have a relative or close friend that will give you the money, which has to be documented in the form of a gift letter affidavit that no repayment is required or expected.

And there is another provision that has been around a long time, but has basically been forgotten….WORK EQUITY.   Most builders hate it because it really is a pain in the ass to deal with.  BUT, it is a tool that can bring willing homebuyers to the closing table much quicker!  We offer the program at Ole South and you do not have to be a first-time buyer to participate!

FHA allows the seller to credit the buyer an amount up to $2.00 per heated square foot living area for painting the interior of the home, including all wood trim and doors.  The seller can also furnish the paint!  Please remember in your negotiating, that is the maximum allowed amount and the builder can get the same job done for 1/2 of that amount. 

You can also receive “work equity” credit toward your required downpayment for seeding and strawing your own lawn.  And the seller can furnish the grass seed and straw as well!

Lets do the math using an 1800 s/f,  $150,000 new home example, which Ole South offers plenty of choices.  (www.OleSouth.com

The required down-payment is $5,250.   Paint the home and you can receive $3,600 credit toward your downpayment.  You can seed and straw a typical new home yard and receive approximately $750.00 credit.  That leaves your total cash out of pocket at $900…. and you still get to take full advantage of the lowest rates available!

History proves that over time, owning is always better than renting.  Why not improve your financial future today by visiting one of our Middle Tennessee neighborhoods in Nashville, Smyrna, Murfreesboro, Spring Hill, and Clarksville?  Find out why thousands of home owners are proud to say:

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee

Nashville New Homes: Lets bring on summer.

In spite of the cooler weather, many Realtors, Home Builders, and Trade Vendors were on hand for the HBAMT Sales & Marketing Council social mixer at The Governors Club this past Tuesday evening!  It was great to see many friends and even better to meet new ones.   Fun and Networking were the key words of the day.  The time went by so fast, I didn’t even get a chance to snap pictures.  Guess you should have been there!

Speaking of the weather, this weekend is shaping up to be great for searching for your new home!  If you have no clue where to start, visit www.OleSouth.com for the location nearest you!  Visit any model home and you will receive a Flat Screen TV if you purchase before June 11, 2011.  Also on the website, you will find an “internet-only” coupon for a Stainless Steel Appliance Package on certain inventory homes.

After you have found the perfect new Ole South home, you will not want to miss the GoodGuys Car Show at LP Field this weekend.  Here is a link to the details:

http://www.go2.com/content/nashville-tn/local-events-c/event_181172265_go2z/goodguys-6th-bridgestone-nashville-nationals-car-s

And this weekend will be a first for us for taking Ruby on an overnight boat trip to downtown.    She is already excited.  I wish she would stop growing soon.  On this trip, we’ll see first hand what has taken place since the flood of last May.  Stay tuned.

Its time for all of us to welcome summer, even if the weather makes us pretend!

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee