Sunday, January 29, 2017

HOME RENOVATIONS WITH AN EYE TOWARD AGING IN PLACE

Recently we shared with you a Harvard housing study, that stated that by 2035, 1 out of every 3 households in the U.S. will be headed by someone 65 and older.  That’s a remarkable statistic but why are any of us surprised?  The baby boomers are moving along in time.  What is more surprising is the fact that, government and industry have not addressed what needs to be done to make the transition work for this segment of the population.

In looking at homes and how they are designed, except perhaps for communities heavily populated and built for retirees, architects and builders have not grabbed this issue and come up with innovation solutions.  One very obvious issue – how to navigate a second level when walking or balance becomes an issue.  Up to now, the only solution has been a chair lift that is not very attractive and signals “invalid” or a very expensive elevator or move to a ranch. There is no doubt about it, we need more innovative, economical solutions. 

The New York Times, recently published a good story about, “well-thought-out redesign (that) might also include modifications to help you stay in your home as you grow older.”  Things like, including in a kitchen renovation shelving to minimize bending,  grab bars (attractively designed) in the shower and other areas of the home to prevent falling, installing extra lighting, movable kitchen islands, lower kitchen counters, toilets that are just two inches higher to make sitting and standing easier, etc.

These types of “renovations help people’s mobility and will reduce social isolation as we age.”

Southold Town has an older population – in fact our average age is about 10 years older than the National average.  Our Planning Board, Zoning Board and Town Board should consider the needs of seniors and encouraging building and renovation that will accommodate our local, long-time citizens.

Source: New York Times, Thinking Ahead, January 1, 2017, Real Estate Section Page 1,8.

Looking to Buy or Sell your Home? Visit us on our website: beninatiassociates.net.  We listen, we care…….and we get results.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

SMART SELLERS WILL LIST EARLY THIS YEAR

I came across this article on realtor.com. I found it informative and wanted to share it.

Forget What You Know: This Year, Sellers May Benefit From Listing Early
Conventional wisdom in real estate holds that sellers should time the market to maximize their price. Why? Because home sales are extremely seasonal: They peak in spring and summer, when prices peak as well. That’s why in most markets, most years, the optimal time to list is in the spring, so that the maximum number of potential buyers view the home.
But we’re in an era in which conventional wisdom is becoming an ever-sketchier concept. So why should real estate be immune from all this topsy-turviness? This year, the conventional wisdom of buying and selling may need to change.
Inventory levels at the beginning of 2017 are at multiyear lows. Sellers now face very little competition.
Likewise, buyer demand is abnormally strong for the off-season. The climb in mortgage rates that started in October and accelerated in November and December has created a sense of urgency among buyers.
The new year is expected to bring more economic growth and even higher interest rates. And with consumer confidence at a 15-year high, buying competition is likely to get fierce.
Not everyone can move up their plans for the spring and summer; but even so, the months of winter and early spring will likely be much busier than usual. Therefore, sellers could benefit less from timing a spring listing for a summer sale this year.
But the most important reason to consider selling early this year is the same reason most people want to sell in the first place: so they can buy again. We estimate that more than 85% of sellers are planning to buy another home. The endgame is not necessarily getting the maximum price on the house being sold, but rather taking the best path to the next home.
When interest rates are moving up, waiting to sell could end up costing more than selling sooner and locking in today’s rates. Waiting to sell could also mean having to wait to buy when there are even fewer homes available.
The biggest challenge to growth in sales this winter and spring will most likely be inventory. That means that the market overall continues to favor sellers. But that won’t last forever. As rates continue to rise, higher financing costs will eventually dampen demand.
If you are thinking of selling and buying in 2017, the early bird may get the worm. And the best new nest.


I agree now is the best time to list your home. If you are thinking of listing your home, you can contact me via e-mail: marie@beninatiassociates.com, on my cell: 631-235-8980 or visit us on our website: beninatiassociates.net.  At Beninati Associates We listen, we care…….and we get results.

Friday, January 20, 2017

A LOOK AT THE FUTURE: GROWTH OF OLDER HOUSEHOLDS – IMPLICATIONS FOR OUR TOWN

“By 2035, an astounding 1 out of 3 American households will be headed by someone aged
65 or older!”  Over the next twenty years, the population aged 65 and over is projected to grow
65% from 48 to 79 million. The number of households headed by someone in that age group will
increase by 66% to almost 50 million.
             
  “Older adults’ homes and living situations are keys to their quality of life and capacity to live
independently.  The expansion of the older population will increase the need for affordable, accessible housing that is well-connected to services well beyond what current supply can meet. In addition, the home is an increasingly important setting for the delivery of long-term care, a trend likely to grow over the next two decades, as millions more seek to remain in their current dwellings.”
              
  The nation is now at the beginning of a 20+ year surge in its older population, and is thus at a critical point for putting in place the affordable housing options, accessibility features, and in-home care services that will be needed  over the next two decades. Transportation and technologies to ensure people can remain engaged in their communities and access supportive services are also needed.

While many older adults indicate that they prefer to age in their current residences, a wider array of housing types can offer safer, more affordable, and lower-maintenance homes within existing communities, improving housing situations without  uprooting older adults from the places they have called  home for years or even decades.”
             
 We call on our community leaders to address this issue in our town.  We commit ourselves and ask you to join us in spearheading efforts to address the issues of safer more affordable, housing and better transportation options for older adults, so they can stay in place, continue to enrich our community with their wisdom and knowledge and strong spirit of giving back to the community they call home - Southold.  

Source:  Projections & Implications for Housing a Growing Population: Older Households 2015-2035. Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University. Read the study www.jchs.harvard.edu