Real Estate Information Archive


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Two years ago (2/28/2014) I wrote a blog post looking at the Market for foreclosed properties in our area - the post said....

3,587 properties (houses, townhomes, condos) have sold in the last 6 months in our local  MLS area. Out of those - 526 were FORECLOSED......... that is almost 15% of the total sold!!!. Approximately 60% of the properties sold for under $100,000. On the other end of the price range, about 3% sold for $300,000 or more.  

I was curious....... what are the statistics regarding foreclosed properties in our current market? 4,186 properties (houses, townhomes, condos) have sold in the last 6 months in our local MLS area. Out of those 317 were FORECLOSED........ that is 7.6% of the total sold. Approximately 47% of the properties sold for under $100,000. On the other end of the price range, about 1.5% sold for $300,000 or more. These numbers show that things have gotten decidedly better in our market in the last 2 years. Sales were up 17% but the number of foreclosures sold was down almost 50%. Let's hope this trend continues.

Bill Arey   REALTOR

The Pat Wattam Team

ReMax First

[email protected]

Common Mistakes Made By For Sale By Owner Sellers

by Bill Arey

I have found that is is fairly commonplace for "For Sale By Owner" houses to be priced higher than fair Market analysis indicates. There are several reasons for this:

1. Basing the asking price on what they want to get out of the house 

Example: The homeowners have a mortgage balance of $150,000 and have a second home equity loan for $25,000, for a total amount of $175,000. The problem is similar homes on the market are selling for around $160,000, but the homeowner is compelled to price the home at $175,000 because they need to pay off both mortgages. 

2. Basing the asking price on the cost they have in the house 

A classic mistake some homeowners make is OVER improving their home relative to the neighborhood. Most neighborhoods will have a price range. Knowing the property values in your neighborhood, including the high values, will help you make a smarter decision about how much to invest in the renovation so that when you go to sell you don’t have to price your home out of the market to pay for the improvements. Most home improvements do not return 100% of the cost of the improvement or upgrade. 

3. Basing the asking price on heresay or website "estimates"

A legitimate asking should be based on FACTUAL sold comparable information. The BEST source of accurate and local market information is the MLS - Multiple Listing Service. 

4. The Seller dosen't  compare apples to apples

The seller may  have gotten the sale price correct for John Smith’s home but does the seller know how his house compares to John Smith's?  If a seller wants "top dollar" for the home it better be in excellent condition and compare favorably on upgrades and amenities with houses that have recently sold in the area.

5. It is natural for a Seller to NOT be objective

It is only natural to think your house is as good or better than the house that sold down the street. If a seller is really interested in selling the house in a reasonable amount of time, getting a price opinion from a licensed Realtor or appraiser is a wise first step.


Bill Arey    Realtor

The Pat Wattam Team

ReMax First

Home - What Does it Mean

by Bill Arey

The Definition of Home

Be it ever so humble, it's more than just a place. It’s also an idea—one where the heart is.

What do you think of when you think of your home? To most, a home is so much more than "sticks and bricks". The home is where the most meaningful aspects of our lives occur. Love, Family, Dreams, Security....... like "Home", all hard to clearly define, but they are the foundation of what makes a house a Home.

Bill Arey - Realtor

The Pat Wattam Team

ReMax First

Investing in Real Estate - Know Your Numbers

by Bill Arey

Investing in Real Estate – Know Your Numbers


Real estate investments should be part of your overall investment portfolio. Why?

Return on investment – plain and simple. In looking for investment property properties the first factor I look for is the 1% rule. Will the possible monthly rent be at least 1% of the investment basis (purchase cost plus any renovation cost).

Example: a client recently bought a one bedroom condo for $58,000, the monthly rent will be $750, monthly condo fees are $100…….. so net income is $650 which is 1.12% of the purchase price. Again anything 1% and above should easily be cash flow positive.  Besides positive cash flow, I look for properties that have the potential to appreciate in value over time and the key to that is the proverbial “buy low”. Recently I have found the best values in foreclosed condos.

Example: a client recently bought a Fannie Mae foreclosed two bedroom condo for $45,500. Comparable units sell for $80,000 - $85,000.


There are plenty of opportunities out there and it is possible to start with a modest initial investment. Most importantly – Know Your Numnbers!

Displaying blog entries 1-4 of 4




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Photo of Pat Wattam Real Estate
Pat Wattam
RE/MAX First, Independently Owned and Operated
4750 Sherwood Common
Baton Rouge LA 70816
Office Direct: 225-298-6900
Office Main: 225-291-1234
Fax: 225-295-1234

RE/MAX First
Each Office Independently Owned and Operated
Main: 225-291-1234

Licensed by the Louisiana Real Estate Commission