Area Real Estate News, Local Events, and Market Trends

You will find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That is because we care about the community and want to help you find ways to enjoy what the local community has to offer. Please reach out if you have any questions at all,we would love to talk with you!

Oct. 21, 2019

Best of St Charles 2019 - Voting

M2 Realty Group Nominated for Best of St Charles 2019

Thank you to all that nominated the M2 Realty Group for Best of St Charles 2019 - Real Estate Agency.  We were fortunate to have received enough nominations to go on to the final voting round.  This is a true honor as we are one of five total real estate groups in the final round for 2019.  Voting goes from Oct 21st - Nov 3rd and you are able to vote daily.  We appreciate everyone that has taken the time to cast their votes!

Vote Daily Through November 3rd

Go directly to the voting page here:
M2 Realty Group - Keller Williams Realty West Partners

Thank you to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and Greater St. Charles Convention & Visitors Bureau for hosting this event and spotlighting local businesses throughout the community.  Good luck to all nominees, your nominations are well deserved.  We are looking forward to congratulating all of the winners and another great year in 2020!

Vote for M2ForSale Best of St Charles 2019

 

 

Sept. 4, 2019

The M2 Team Pedals The Cause 2019

A huge shout out to all of the Keller Williams agents from around the St. Louis market centers, our proud professional affiliates, and gracious sponsors that pledged and sponsored our agents in the Pedal The Cause 2019 event.  The KW company and culture is second to none, and the pledged turnout this year demonstrates the KW commitment to the community.  This year is on track to raise thousands of dollars from the KW group alone.  The event as a whole has an anticipated 19,000 total riders scheduled to participate, raising much needed funds to create a world without cancer.

Signing up and pledging to Pedal The Cause 2019 is not an event the M2 team will miss this year. Maria has had the honor of knowing her uncle John for many years, celebrating many holidays, birthdays, and other family outings together. John was diagnosed with kidney cancer in the past, received treatment, and went into remission for quite some time.  Early in 2019, John's cancer had returned and spread throughout several organs in his body.  The cancer progressed and John was unable to recover.  Being the huge St. Louis Blues fan that he was, it is only fitting that John passed away the same day the Blues won game 7 of the Stanley Cup playoffs in 2019. The entire family is convinced that John's legendary spirit, and will to fight, helped deliver a win to the Blues that evening bringing the Stanley Cup home to St. Louis.  John is deeply missed, and the M2 team is extremely honored to ride in his memory.

Please come out and support the cause in whichever way you can.  The ride is scheduled for September 29th, 2019, with options ranging from 10 to 100+ miles.  Donations are accepted until the end of October 2019, so donate what you can today.  Your support is greatly appreciated!

Maria Partridge Donation Site

Matt Partridge Donation Site

Aug. 28, 2019

MAD Dream Builders Harry Potter Trivia Night 2019

Come join the M2ForSale Realty team at the Harry Potter Trivia Night for a magical evening on Saturday, October 12th, 2019 at the Trigg Banquet Center in O’Fallon, MO.  Hosted by the MAD Dream Builders benefiting the Habitat for Humanity of St. Charles County, the evening will be filled with drink, food, and fun for all muggles over the age of 16.  Goblets must be filled on-site as NO outside alcohol is allowed.  Beer and wine are included for those over the age of 21 and soda is available for everyone.  Feel free to bring a trolley full of snacks or pre-order snacks directly from the Trigg.

Tables are $200 for a team of 8.  The event will also feature a 50/50 drawing and raffle baskets for bidding, so grab your broom and fly on over to the Trigg Banquet Center on October 12th for an evening of magic and butter beers. Doors open at 6pm, quidditch matches begin at 7pm. All proceeds benefit the Habitat for Humanity of St. Charles County.

Harry Potter Trivia Night by MAD Dream Builders
Habitat for Humanity of St. Charles County
October 12, 2019
Trigg Banquet Center
300 O’Fallon Plaza
O’Fallon, MO 63366

MAD Dream Builders Harry Potter Trivia 2019

Posted in Local Events
June 12, 2019

Curious About Local Real Estate?

Receive the Latest Local Market Stats

Curious about local real estate? So are we! Every month we review trends in the local real estate market and consider the number of homes on the market in each price tier, the amount of time particular homes have been listed for sale, specific neighborhood trends, the median price and square footage of each home sold and so much more. We’d love to invite you to do the same!

Get Local Market Reports Sent Directly to You

You can sign up here to receive your own market report, delivered as often as you like! It contains current information on pending, active and just sold properties so you can see actual homes in your neighborhood. You can review your area on a larger scale, as well, by refining your search to include properties across the city or county. As you notice price and size trends, please contact us for clarification or to have any questions answered.

Local Market Reports

Lake St. Louis
Wentzville
O'Fallon
Dardenne Prairie
St. Peters
St. Charles

What's Your Home Worth?

We can definitely fill you in on details that are not listed on the report and help you determine the best home for you. If you are wondering if now is the time to sell, please try out our INSTANT home value tool. You will get an estimate on the value of your property in today’s market. Either way, we hope to hear from you soon as you get to know our neighborhoods and local real estate market better.

Also, be sure to try out the numerous features available on our mobile app while you are embarking on your real estate journey.  The mobile app is amazing and will allow you locate homes for sale based on your current location. Available for iOS and Android, the mobile app does not disappoint.

Posted in Market Updates
May 15, 2019

Which Down Payment Strategy Is Right For You?

You have most likely heard the rule: Save for a 20-percent down payment before you buy a home. The logic behind saving 20 percent is solid, as it shows that you have the financial discipline and stability to save for a long-term goal. It also helps you get favorable rates from lenders.

But there can actually be financial benefits to putting down a small down payment—as low as three percent—rather than parting with so much cash up front, even if you have the money available.

THE DOWNSIDE

The downsides of a small down payment are pretty well known. You will have to pay Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) for years, and the lower your down payment, the more you will pay. You will also be offered a lesser loan amount than borrowers who have a 20-percent down payment, which will eliminate some homes from your search.

THE UPSIDE

The national average for home appreciation is about five percent. The appreciation is independent from your home payment, so whether you put down 20 percent or three percent, the increase in equity is the same. If you are looking at your home as an investment, putting down a smaller amount can lead to a higher return on investment, while also leaving more of your savings free for home repairs, upgrades, or other investment opportunities.

THE HAPPY MEDIUM

Of course, your home payment options are not binary. Most borrowers can find some common ground between the security of a traditional 20 percent and an investment-focused, small down payment. As your trusted real estate professional, we can provide some answers as you explore your financing options.  We work with a handfull of the best lenders in the area.

Posted in Tips & Tricks
April 17, 2019

Short Sale and Foreclosure: How Are They Different?

As unfortunate as it can be when homeowners fall behind on mortgage payments and must face the possibility of losing their homes, short sales and foreclosures provide them options for moving on financially. The terms are often used interchangeably, but they’re actually quite different, with varying timelines and financial impact on the homeowner. Here is a brief overview.

A short sale comes into play when a homeowner needs to sell their home but the home is worth less than the remaining balance that they owe. The lender can allow the homeowner to sell the home for less than the amount owed, freeing the homeowner from the financial predicament.  On the buyer side, short sales typically take three to four months to complete and many of the closing and repair costs are shifted from the seller to the lender.

On the other hand, a foreclosure occurs when a homeowner can no longer make payments on their home so the bank begins the process of repossessing it. A foreclosure usually moves much faster than a short sale and is more financially damaging to the homeowner.

After foreclosure the bank can sell the home in a foreclosure auction. For buyers, foreclosures are riskier than short sales, because homes are often bought sight unseen, with no inspection or warranty.

Posted in Tips & Tricks
March 20, 2019

Refinancing Myths Explained

“Refinancing” is a scary word for many people, but that shouldn’t be the case for you. For many homeowners, refinancing can not only lower your monthly payments and help with your monthly budget, but it can save you thousands of dollars in the long run.

YOU ARE NOT TOO LATE

We have been hearing that interest rates will be on the rise, and although there have been some small increases and decreases over the years, you are still in a great position to drastically lower your interest rate. The general rule is if your mortgage interest rate is more than one percent above the current market rate, you should consider refinancing.

IT IS NOT TOO TIME CONSUMING

Do not brush off refinancing just because it seems like a long and daunting process. An informational call with a lender to see how rates compare will only take a few minutes. There are also some programs for streamlining the application process. And besides, is not the amount of money you could save worth the time and effort?

ARMS CAN BE REFINANCED TOO

Seeing your Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) increase after the introductory period can be incredibly stressful and place a squeeze on your budget. Many people assume they are stuck, but ARMs can be refinanced, just like fixed-rate mortgages. You can even switch to a shorter term fixed-rate mortgage, such as 15 or 23 years. The longer you are planning to stay in the home, the more sense it makes to look into refinancing.

Posted in Tips & Tricks
Feb. 13, 2019

Recommended Tools For Every Home Owner

When you own your home, things are going to break and unless you want to spend your money on visits from a neighborhood handyman, you are going to need to fix them yourself. Luckily, you do not need an arsenal of tools to handle most home maintenance fixes. These five tools will cover most of your basic projects.

  1. Cordless drill. A cordless drill is a must-have for installing cabinets, drawer pulls, hinges, picture frames, shelves and hooks, and more. Whether it’s for do-it-yourself projects or repairs, you will use your cordless drill just about every month.
  2. Drain cleaners. Shower and bathroom sink drains are susceptible to clogs because of the daily buildup of hair and whisker clippings. You can use chemical clog removers like Drano, but they are expensive and the lingering chemical scent is unpleasant. Instead, buy some plastic drain cleaners that can reach into the drain to pull out the clog of hair and gunk. You can purchase them on Amazon or at a local hardware store for a low price.
  3. Wet/Dry Vac. No matter how careful you are, spills and accidents will happen and there are some tasks that just cannot be handled with paper towels or a standard vacuum, like pet messes or broken glass.
  4. Shears. Even the minimum amount of care for your landscaping will require some shears to remove damaged branches, vines, thick weeds, and any other unruly plants in your yard.
  5. Flashlight. You are going to want something a little more powerful than your iPhone flashlight when you are in the crawlspace!
Posted in Tips & Tricks
Jan. 23, 2019

Time To Upsize Your House?

Unfortunately, our homes do not always grow with us. What may have initially worked fine for a single person, a young couple’s starter home, or a family with a newborn can quickly become too small as families expand and multiple generations live under one roof.

Remodeling and adding to your home is one option for creating more space, but it can be costly, and the size of your property may be prohibitive. That is when moving to a bigger home becomes the best solution.

WHERE DO YOU NEED MORE SPACE?

The first thought when upsizing your home is to simply consider square footage, bedrooms, and bathrooms. But it is important to take a more critical approach to how your space will actually be used. If you have younger children (or possibly more on the way), then focusing on bedrooms and bathrooms makes sense. But if your children are closer to heading off to college or starting their own families, it may be better to prioritize group spaces like the kitchen, dining room, living room, and outdoor space—it will pay off during the holidays or summer vacations, when everyone is coming to visit for big gatherings.

MOVING OUTWARD

If you need more space, but do not necessarily want a more expensive home, you can probably get a lot more house for your money if you move a little further from a city center. While the walking distance and short commutes of a dense neighborhood or condo are hard to leave beyond, your lifestyle—and preferences for hosting Thanksgiving, barbecues, and birthdays—might mean that a spacious home in the suburbs makes the most sense. It is your best option for upsizing while avoiding a heftier price tag.

Posted in Tips & Tricks
Dec. 14, 2018

5 Common Reasons To Refinance

Refinancing your mortgage is something most homeowners consider at least once throughout the lifespan of their home loan. It allows you to pay off your previous loan by applying for a new one that has better financial advantages. While there are many good reasons to refinance, here are five common ones.

 

  • Scoring a lower interest rate. The number one reason homeowners decide to refinance is to secure a lower interest rate on their mortgage. Not only does this save you money in the long run and decrease your monthly payment, but you can start building equity in your home sooner.

  • Using an improved credit score. Even if interest rates have not dropped in the market, if you’ve improved your credit score over the last few years, you may be able to reduce your mortgage rate.

  • Shortening the loan’s term. If interest rates are decreasing, there is a chance you may be able to get a shorter loan term with little to no change in your monthly payment, allowing you to pay off your loan sooner.

  • Switching from an adjustable rate to a fixed rate. If you chose an adjustable-rate mortgage with great introductory rates when you initially financed your home, that rate may increase significantly over the years. By switching to a fixed rate while interest rates are low, you can protect yourself from future increases.

  • Cashing out home equity. If there is a big purchase or payment on the horizon, such as funding a wedding or going back to school, your best option may be to use the equity you’ve built in your home to borrow money at a lower cost.
Posted in Tips & Tricks