Did you know...
Lake Minnetonka means “Big Waters" in the native Dakota language. Our beautiful lake was formed by glacial melting following the last Ice Age. Lake Minnetonka is one of the largest lakes in the state (10th largest), boasting 110 miles of shoreline and 14,000 acres of water, about 22 square miles.
In 1853 a fellow George Bertram, from New York City, founded the town of Excelsior on the southern side of the lower lake. Wayzata (Dakota for "North Shore"), was founded in 1854, followed by Deephaven, Orono, and nearly a dozen other townships and municipalities.
Today, there are many meticulously maintained parks and beaches. And, a smorgasbord of special events, exhibits and festivities are held throughout the year.
So, it is clear our Lake Minnetonka Community has been here and will be here for many, many years to come. Not only that, but our real estate market will thrive and we will all prosper. When?, you say. It would be ideal if I could look you in the eye and say , “On April 5, 2011 at 3:37PM, our properties will begin to increase 5.43% annually. Further, this will continue thru September 7th, 2021 at 9:15AM. If I told you this, you would dismiss my comments as crazy rhetoric and I would very soon be selling “Pet Rocks” at the local Flea Market!
A more strategic question may be, "In what direction is the market heading and how fast?" Well, there are a number of variables that will contribute to this answer. The, in what direction, portion of the question can be put into context with a snap shots of the “real estate” of the economy.
- Inventories for existing homes are down (Traditional and Lender Mediated) - 12 months ago Lake Minnetonka Area inventories were more than 36 months. Yep, more than 3 years to liquidate homes that were currently for sale. This is in large part due to the better than average price point. The majority of homes with Lake Minnetonka lakeshore are valued at well over $500,000. Although still high, the supply of inventory has been cut in 1/2.
- Builders are very slowly, carefully, and strategically adding new inventory (This has not always the case!)
- Interest rates are at historic lows.
- Lenders have policed themselves (Loans are more conservative and less likely to default int the future.)
- The Gov’t has provided stimulus ( Like it, or not.)
- Our unemployment rate (MN) lags the nation by 2 full points (Last I checked, 7.6% vs. 9.7%)
- We have one of the most diverse group of industries in the country
- Our political scape is more balanced then most other states. (instability in policy can negatively impact all of the above. And, do so unexpectedly.)
So, all in all, our economy and real estate market appear to be stable for now. And, the likelihood that our market will improve before it gets worse is good. Regardless, you must be cautious, as our state, counties, and cities, have little influence, on Federal and global policy, spending, oil spills, war, and beyond.
The how fast part of the question will be influenced by all of the above factor’s as well as, local economics and public policy of each community. This article/blog post primarily focuses on one community consisting of a dozen or so cities, i.e., Deephaven ... Excelsior ... Greenwood ...Long Lake ... Minnetonka Beach ...Minnetonka ...Minnetrista ... Mound ... Orono... Shorewood ... Spring Park ...Tonka Bay ... Victoria... Wayzata ...Woodland. Nonetheless, the old saying, “Real estate is local." is absolutely true. So, not only must one understand the Lake Minnetonka Community, but one must understand these individual cities, and neighborhoods, as well.
For instance, the average sale price, percent of original list price received at sale, average days on market until sale, and available inventory, is going to vary considerably from city to city and neighborhood to neighborhood. Further, these statistics will be more volatile (change more quickly) in markets with a higher percentage of Lender Mediated Properties (Short Sales and Foreclosures). What this means to you is this.
Whether you’re buying or selling a home within the Lake Minnetonka Community, when you choose to interview a Lake Minnetonka Area Realtor, be sure they have, at least, a good grasp on the aforementioned economic and real estate market variables. If they don’t know how LIBOR effects interest rates, why the price per linear foot of shoreline varies on Lake Minnetonka, and why it is crucial not to “chase the market, especially on the lake, then call me. Also, it should be clear to them, that their job is to help you make an informed decision that leads to the best investment possible. This is done by understanding and listening to your goals and objectives first. Then, searching for and finding your next Lake Minnetonka Area home. Further, knowing the market, community, neighborhood is extremely important. If they don’t know it, make sure they find out! Or, simply start by calling me!
In short, I earn my living by arming you with my negotiation skills, area knowledge, and expertise. This is an absolute must. A Realtor must know how to take a fair and equitable approach to the negotiation. He/she must always work in your best interest so that you get the best available deal while still being able to look in the mirror the next morining when they get ready for a new day.
As always, please contact me with any questions or thoughts you may have regarding the "real estate" of the economy. I am here as a resource to you.
RE/MAX Results of Wayzata
Stephenson & Albers Real Estate Team
(763) 229-9067 Mobile
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