Buyer and Seller Perks in Today’s Housing Market

Buyer & Seller Perks in Today’s Housing Market | MyKCM

Right now, the housing market is full of outstanding opportunities for both buyers and sellers. Whether you’re thinking of buying your first home, moving up to a bigger one, or selling so you can downsize this spring, there are perks today that are powering big moves for people across the country. Here are the top two to keep on the radar this season.

The Biggest Perk for Buyers: Low Mortgage Rates

Buyer & Seller Perks in Today’s Housing Market | MyKCM

Today’s most compelling buyer incentive is low mortgage interest rates. The 30-year fixed-rate is now averaging just over 3%. While that’s slightly higher than the record-lows from 2020 and earlier this year, it’s still way lower than historic norms, making purchasing a home an ongoing perk for hopeful buyers (See graph below):This is a huge advantage for buyers and helps to make owning a home attainable for more households – and there’s good reason to strive for homeownership. The latest Homeowner Equity Report from CoreLogic shows how homeowners saw major gains in their net worth last year, all thanks to owning a home. Frank Martell, President and CEO of CoreLogicexplains:

Positive factors like record-low interest rates and a booming housing market encouraged many families to enter homeownership. This growing bank of personal wealth that homeownership affords was noticed by many but in particular for first-time buyers who want a piece of the cake. As a result, we may see more of those currently renting start to enter the market in the near future.”

Low mortgage rates are a plus for buyers right now, but experts forecast we’ll see them continue to rise as the year goes on. If you’re ready to purchase a home, it’s wise to get started on the process soon so you can secure today’s comparatively low rate.

The Biggest Perk for Sellers: Low Inventory

Today, there are simply not enough houses on the market for the number of buyers looking to purchase them, and it’s creating a serious sellers’ market. According to Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at

“Total active inventory continues to decline, dropping 50 percent. With buyers active in the market and sellers still slow to put homes up for sale, homes are selling quickly and the total number actively available for sale at any point in time continues to decline.” (See map below):

Buyer & Seller Perks in Today’s Housing Market | MyKCM

The lack of houses for sale continues to challenge the market, and with low mortgage rates fueling buyer demand, homes are hard for buyers to find today. According to the latest Realtors Confidence Index Survey by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the average house is now receiving 4.1 offers and is on the market for only 20 days.

Buyers are clearly eager to purchase, and because of the shortage of inventory available, they’re often entering bidding warsThis is one of the factors keeping home prices strong and giving sellers leverage in the negotiation process.

Homeowners who are in a position to sell shouldn’t wait to make their move. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel for today’s inventory shortage, so listing this spring will get your house on the market when conditions are most favorable. With low inventory and high buyer demand, homeowners can potentially earn a greater profit on their houses and sell them quickly in the fast-paced spring market.

Bottom Line

Whether you’re thinking about buying or selling a home, there are major perks available in today’s housing market. Let’s connect today to discuss how these favorable conditions play to your advantage in our local area.

Shawna O’Brien
F.C. Tucker Geist Fishers

2021 Real Estate Myth Buster

Some Highlights

  • There are a lot of misconceptions about buying or selling a home today, making it challenging to know exactly how to navigate the current real estate landscape.
  • Here’s a little clarity when it comes to 5 common myths about the 2021 housing market.
  • Let’s connect to discuss your needs and so you can decipher facts from fiction in our local market.

Shawna O’Brien
F.C. Tucker Geist Fishers

Make a “Great Things” List

What’s great about your home? Is it the spacious foyer and generous main floor closet space? Is it the beautiful washroom? Is it the playground that is only a short walking distance away?

Although some properties may look similar at first glance, every home is unique – with features and characteristics that make it special. If you’re considering putting your home on the market, make a list of all the great things about your property that potential buyers will want to know.

Start by thinking about the most desirable features of your home. Write down what you really love about the house and the surrounding area.

Next, think about what comments friends and other visitors to your home have made. Have you ever heard anyone say something like, “I really love your kitchen!” or, “This is such a quiet street”? Those are indications that potential buyers will like those features and characteristics too.

Once you have your list, let’s talk. Together, we’ll review all the great things about your home and area, and decide how to market them effectively.

Shawna O’Brien
F.C. Tucker Geist Fishers

How Upset Should You Be about 3% Mortgage Rates?

How Upset Should You Be about 3% Mortgage Rates? | MyKCM

Last Thursday, Freddie Mac announced that their 30-year fixed mortgage rate was over 3% (3.02%) for the first time since last July. That news dominated real estate headlines that day and the next. Articles talked about the “negative impact” it may have on the housing market. However, we should realize two things:

1. The bump-up in rate should not have surprised anyone. Many had already projected that rates would rise slightly as we proceeded through the year.

2. Freddie Mac’s comments about the rate increase were not alarming:

“The rise in mortgage rates over the next couple of months is likely to be more muted in comparison to the last few weeks, and we expect a strong spring sales season.”

A “muted” rise in rates will not sink the real estate market, and most experts agree that it will be a strong spring sales season.”

What does this mean for you?

Obviously, any buyer would rather mortgage rates not rise at all, as any upward movement increases their monthly mortgage payment. However, let’s put a 3.02% rate into perspective. Here are the Freddie Mac annual mortgage rates for the last five years:

  • 2016: 3.65%
  • 2017: 3.99%
  • 2018: 4.54%
  • 2019: 3.94%
  • 2020: 3.11%

Though 3.02% is not as great as the sub-3% rates we saw over the previous seven weeks, it’s still very close to the all-time low (2.66% in December 2020).

And, if we expand our look at mortgage rates to consider the last 50 years, we can see that today’s rate is truly outstanding. Here are the rates over the last five decades:

  • 1970s: 8.86%
  • 1980s: 12.7%
  • 1990s: 8.12%
  • 2000s: 6.29%
  • 2010s: 4.09%

Being upset that you missed the “best mortgage rate ever” is understandable. However, don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. Buying now still makes more sense than waiting, especially if rates continue to bump up this year.

Bottom Line

It’s true that you may not get the same rate you would have five weeks ago. However, you will get a better rate than what was possible at almost any other point in history. Let’s connect today so you can lock in a great rate while they stay this low.

Shawna O’Brien
F.C. Tucker Geist Fishers

Perform a Home Self Inspection

The home inspector’s job is to provide a report on the condition of your home in a variety of categories that impact the safety and habitability of your home. He/She will report on weaknesses and trouble spots that could turn into big issues for the new homeowner in the future.

Be a prepared seller prior to the home inspection by looking at all areas of your home from top to bottom with a critical eye.

Roof: Pay attention to soffits, fascia and shingles. Look for wear and tear, hail damage, nail pops, mold and rot

Gutters & Downspouts: Ensure they are attached securely, not pulling away, and properly draining water away from the home.

Attic: Secure insulation and replace areas if needed. Ensure the attic is properly ventilated and look for gaps, rot, mold and decay.

Walls & Ceilings: Look for discolored spots on walls, ceilings and in corners which would indicate water leaks and possibly mold.

Basement: Look for cracks in foundation and condensation in the corners, along the wall. Test your sump-pump and consider a back up battery.

HVAC: Check the serial number on your unit to find out how old it is and have it serviced by a professional prior to inspection. Older systems are less efficient and prone to breakdown so be prepared to fix, replace or provide a home warranty to the Buyer if the inspector indicates it’s toward the end of it’s life expectancy (usually 15-20 years).

Windows & Doors: Open and close each door and window to check that they open and close easily. Frames should be smooth and intact, with no airflow, and all wood trim should be in good condition with no wood rot.

Plumbing: Check that fixtures are secure and no loose toilets. Look under your cabinets and around your water heater for water stains, leaks, mildew and mold.

Structure: Walk your home like you are looking and listening for the first time. Are there creeks in the flooring or on stairs? Are handrails secure?

Shawna O’Brien
F.C. Tucker Geist Fishers

What to Do When Closing Dates Don’t Match

If you want to sell your current property and purchase your next dream home, you might be wondering whether the closing dates need to be on the same day. 

You might even be worried that you’ll lose a property if the closing dates overlap, or you’ll be put out on the street if the dates are far apart!

For the most part, these concerns are unfounded. Thousands of properties change hands every day and usually everything works out just fine. In fact, it’s amazing how often closing dates actually do match!

But, what happens if the closing date of the home you want to buy is days or weeks earlier than the closing date of your own property?

Most lenders anticipate this situation and offer something called “Bridge Financing.” It is a special loan that allows you to purchase the property with the earlier closing date. When your current property closes, the bridge financing ends and your new mortgage – if you need one – begins on the new home.

Alternatively, if the home you want has a later closing date, we will work together to explore options.

Shawna O’Brien
F.C. Tucker Geist Fishers

REVIEW! Satisfied Client Bought and Sold

Highly likely to recommend|5.0

Bought and sold a Single Family home in 2020 in Indianapolis, IN.

  • Local knowledge: *****
  • Process expertise: *****
  • Responsiveness: *****
  • Negotiation skills: *****

Shawna is an amazing realtor! She was extremely knowledgeable and professional and always had our best interests in mind. She helped us purchase our new home as well as sell our old home and it was such a smooth process; she was a great advocate and was in constant communication with us. Shawna‘s attention to detail is impeccable. She provided expert guidance on how to stage our home for photography and hired a wonderful photographer who took the most beautiful pictures of our home. Our home sold in 5 days! I would recommend her to anyone. You won’t be disappointed!


Spring is almost here!  Are you as excited as I am? It is my favorite season as the weather warms, foliage and flowers come back to life and our family can spend more time outdoors.

Spring is also the season many individuals and families start the process to list their home, buy a new home or build a new home and I am eager to help them meet their real estate goals.

I’m NEVER too busy for your referrals, by the way. Who do you know that plans to buy, sell or build in the next year or two? I’d be honored to receive an introduction and the opportunity to assist!

Some of my previous clients have written a testimony about their experience working with me and I invite you to read the reviews and share them with someone that is looking for a knowledgeable, dedicated, qualified real estate broker (me 😊) to assist them today, or in the future:

Also, If YOU may be in the market in the next year or two, I’d like to remind you I can send you profiles of homes the instant they hit the market that:

  • have the features you want
  • are in neighborhoods you want to live in
  • are available at your price point

Wouldn’t that information be helpful? Even if you are “just looking”, it makes sense to look at homes that are a good fit for you.

Please call or email me anytime and I’ll set this up for you.

On a personal note, I’m coaching my daughter’s volleyball team and we enter the tournament on March 8th. Wish us luck! And, my son has started his track season at Cathedral with his first meet on March 13th!

Cheers, and let the Luck of the Irish be with you this month!