Earlier this fall, President Trump’s administration and House GOP members each posited new tax plans outlining major revisions to current policies regarding property and estate taxes, mortgage interest deductions, and state and local tax breaks. As might be expected, the public is split over whether the suggested edits would be beneficial. The suggested changes include: repealing the estate tax within six years, dropping the corporate tax rate to a flat 20%, slashing the mortgage interest deduction threshold from $1 million to $500,000, and – among other suggestions – capping property taxes at $10,000. For those in my profession, the question continually arises: How will these alterations impact the housing market?
Dream homes tend to have flaws when you see them in real life. Given that a full 90% of home searches begin on the Internet, it can be easy for an excited buyer to fall in love with photos of the skyline-facing balcony or glimpses of the hardwood floors. Real life, however, isn’t always so perfect. Enthused buyers can feel deflated when they realize that their so-called dream residence is next door to a particularly rowdy group of kids, or that the floorplan is a little more cramped than it seemed online. In the most severe cases, buyers can dismiss the less-than-ideal option and go in search of a new dream home. In cases where the home is perfect except for one or two significant outlying factors, however, the buyer is left to wonder: When, exactly, is the right time to compromise on a home?
Buyers, sellers, and real estate agents alike wade through pages upon pages of listing numbers, housing photos, cost estimates, neighborhood descriptions, benefits, detractions, and pages upon pages of (ir)relevant information. For all their searching, these exhausted researchers usually end their investigation as soon as they find the bare facts they need before gratefully closing out their tabs. But real estate isn’t the stressful, confusing business that its web presence makes it out to be. Beyond the bland on-screen display of listings and stats, it’s a thriving industry with heart, humor, and a lively community of real people with much to share.
While the hunt for the ideal real estate agent may seem like just another frustrating hoop to jump through on the way to finding or selling a home, finding the right representative is absolutely vital to getting the best deal possible.
Technology is shaping the way we communicate with our friends, colleagues, and clients – and for realtors, the change can be more than a little jarring.