1. Forbes Ranks Houston as the “Coolest City in America”• Citing a local economy that was “humming through the recession, stylish housing developments,” restaurants, art galleries and a host of cultural attractions, Forbes magazine has named Houston “the coolest city in America to live.”• The designation comes after the publication surveyed 65 of the largest Metropolitan Statistical Areas in the U.S.• Forbes says, “Houston enjoyed 2.6% job growth last year and nearly 50,000 Americans flocked there in response – particularly young professionals. In fact, the median age of a Houston resident is a youthful 33.”• The publication goes on to praise Houston for its “strong theater scene, world-class museums and a multicultural, zoning-free mashup of a streetscape.”• Read the complete report here.
2. Mortgage Rates Score a New Record Low• The average rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage has fallen again, this time dropping below 3.50 percent for the first time on records dating back 60 years.• Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday that the rate on the 30-year loan declined to 3.49 percent. Thats down from 3.53 percent the previous week and the lowest since long-term mortgages began in the 1950s.• The average rate on the 15-year fixed mortgage, a popular refinancing option, dipped to 2.80 percent. Thats below the previous record a week earlier of 2.83 percent.• The rate on the 30-year loan has fallen to or matched record-low levels in 13 of the past 14 weeks.
3. imPACt Katy is Here Join HAR TREPAC for an informative luncheon about some of the most challenging issues facing the Katy region today: •The Legislative and Political Landscape •Growth and Economic Development •Ever Expanding School Support System that makes Katy shine Monday, August 6 from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. The Brookwood Community Cafe 1752 FM 1489 Brookshire, TX 77423Presenters include The Honorable Pete Olson, U.S. House of Representatives District 22 and representatives from the Katy Area Economic Development Council and Katy ISD. $15 ticket will count toward your 2012 TREPAC investment. RSVP to Aracely Arrazolo at firstname.lastname@example.org or 713-629-1900 ext. 286.
4. Weekly HAR Market StatWith the Olympics in full swing, many are noting that housing has alreadymedaled in several arenas. Sellers waiting for firmer prices should take afresh look at the data. Buyers nervous about a declining market should do thesame. Key changes continue to take place that set the stage for a moremeaningful recovery. In the Houston region, for the week ending July 22: • New Listings decreased 3.9% to 2,127 • Pending Sales increased 36.2% to 1,738 • Closed Sales increased 26.5% to 1,434
5. Cultivating New and Repeat Business CRS Elective: Turn it On Automatic Serving the Repeat and Referral Client Prospecting and lead generation are the most important sales activities and probably the most neglected. There is so much for a REALTOR® to do and so little time to get it done. The majority of all repeat and referral business depends on relationships: past customers, friends or referrals from past customers or friends. While 87% of buyers say theyll recommend or use their agent again, only 14% actually do. That 80% fallout is due to not staying in touch. It’s not enough to know what needs to be done. You need a system to make it happen while you handle all of the other demands on your time and resources. Spend the morning with national speaker and trainer, Pat Zaby, and learn how to put a system into place that will make lead generation Automatic! Date: Wednesday, August 22 Time: 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. Location: HAR Central & HAR Montgomery (via video conf.) Investment: $39Register at www.har.com/edu Questions? 713-629-1900 ext. 6