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5 Real Estate Stocks to Watch in 2019

In uncertain economic times, investors often bolster their portfolios with safe options, like mutual funds, ETFs, and stocks with high dividend yields. While the broader market has wavered and shown signs of a potential recession in 2019, the real estate market remains one of the strongest industries for investors. So, while real estate offers a safe investment opportunity, it also offers significant growth potential for the future.

That said, you may not be sure which individual stocks or funds will yield the best results in a possible bear market. Thankfully, we’ve already done a lot of the research for you. The following 5 real estate stocks show the greatest promise for the remainder of 2019 and beyond.

Innovative Industrial Properties (IIPR)

If you want to invest in real estate while also mitigating risk in your portfolio, REITs (Real Estate Investment Trusts) are some of the best options for you. Innovative Industrial Properties is primarily involved in the acquisition and management of facilities for cannabis production. While these facilities are generally reserved for experienced, medical cannabis producers, changing legislation throughout North America could increase demand for recreational cannabis facilities as well.

Senior Housing Properties Trust (SNH)

Now that the Baby Boomer generation is reaching retirement age, there is an increased need for medical and nursing facilities for the elderly. There are currently more senior citizens than ever, and Senior Housing Properties Trust continues to be a powerhouse in this section of the real estate market. Additionally, SNH is great for investors who want more high-yield dividend stocks, as the current yield is 13.31.

STAG Industrial (STAG)

Stag Industrial focuses on the ownership of single-tenant industrial properties. This niche has benefited from the rise in Internet sales, as businesses move their storefronts to e-commerce websites, and their real estate to warehouses. STAG Industrial has shown consistent growth over the last 5 years, in addition to providing a dividend yield of 5.71. As e-commerce continues to grow, stocks like STAG will gobble up a greater share of the market.

Retail Opportunity Investments (ROIC)

Like the name implies, Retail Opportunity Investments deals in the ownership and management of retail real estate, with a focus on grocery stores in densely populated regions. While many other retail stores are turning to e-commerce and moving away from brick-and-mortar locales, grocery stores remain consistently strong in the real estate market. ROIC’s stock growth has been relatively small over the last 5 years, but with a dividend yield of 4.91, it is still a strong bet going forward.

GEO Group (GEO)

GEO Group focuses on the management of correctional and rehabilitation facilities. While the GEO Group invests heavily in the public-private detention sector in the United States, it also invests in correctional real estate in South Africa, Australia, and the UK. And though GEO may not be a growth stock for your portfolio, its high dividend yield of 9.54 is a great addition to just about any portfolio.

Are you interested in learning more about real estate investment? Consult the experts at Clean Title today!

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Latest Trends in the 2019 Real Estate Market

We’re more than halfway through 2019, and it has already proven to be a very interesting and tumultuous year in real estate. New listings have been steadily on the rise, even though hikes in the interest rate at the close of 2018 created a lot of uncertainty for this year’s housing market. Additionally, trends that have remained in place for the last decade are beginning to reverse, particularly as it relates to rising wages and stagnating housing prices. But what does the rest of the year have in store for potential home buyers and other real estate investors? Let’s take a look at a few of the latest trends in real estate, as well as our most up-to-date predictions for the rest of the year.

Houses Are Becoming More Affordable Again

While wages have remained relatively stagnant over the last decade, housing prices have continued to rise, making real estate an unrealistic or even impossible investment for many Americans, especially those just entering the job market. However, that trend is beginning to reverse. Average wages are climbing slowly upward, and housing prices continue to rise as well, though the latter category is rising at a much slower rate than in the past.

Surprisingly, analysts have expected this change for a while. When looking at the housing market as it compares to average wages, the market tends to act much like a rubber band. It may be stretched so that prices outpace wages for an extended period of time (as it has in recent years), but at one point or another, the rubber band must snap back together. When this happens, these prices and wages become much more equal, making it easier for consumers to invest in new real estate.

Uncertainty Will Continue In the Short-Term

At the end of 2018, the Fed intended to raise interest rates two times over the following year. However, they seem to have reversed course, though it remains unclear if they will actually lower the benchmark interest rate or follow through with their original projections. Nonetheless, mortgage rates have dropped a full percentage point in anticipation of these changes, giving home buyers more incentive to invest.

That said, mortgage rates could still rise if the Fed does decide to increase interest rates once again. And even if they do lower or maintain interest rates, this does not mean that the housing market will suddenly react. It will take time for these rates to have an effect, and in the meantime, mortgage payments will remain the same. So, until the Federal Reserve makes a clear decision one way or the other, it will be difficult to gauge how mortgage rates will be affected.

Not Every Location Is Following National Trends

While things are generally looking up for home buyers, the situation varies widely depending on the local market. Overall, the country is shifting from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market. However, no two states or cities are exactly the same. Cities with lower costs of living have remained strong for home sellers, as job creation and high wages have increased the pool of potential buyers.

However, the market in cities like Chicago is very different. Sellers far outpace buyers, giving those looking to invest in real estate more room to negotiate, driving prices down. Changing laws have also caused an increased desire for mobility. For example, many consumers are choosing to move out of states with higher income taxes.

Prices Will Continue to Drop as Construction Ramps up

Looking to the second half of 2019, analysts are confident that the housing market will continue its upward trend. Though the future is not entirely clear (thanks in large part to uncertainty surrounding interest rates), prices are not rising as quickly as before. Additionally, investors have started to reenter the market, having initially left in the wake of the 2008 crisis.

As investments increase, construction will ramp up, increasing the inventory and driving down prices. Provided that wages continue to rise, this will make for a much more affordable market for buyers going forward. While this may sound like a bad sign for sellers, it will actually lead to a much healthier market.

As it stands now, many younger Americans struggle with the idea of balancing their budget and setting aside money for a home. Many houses remain unsold as a result. However, prices are dropping while wages are rising, and the Fed would like this trend to continue for as long as possible. So, while it is impossible to predict the remainder of 2019 with perfect clarity, it seems that the market will become much more agreeable for buyers, sellers, and investors in the second half of the year.

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How do I Improve my Property Value?

Whether you are looking to sell your house in the near future or you simply want to raise the value of your real estate investment, renovations are a necessary part of home ownership. Often times, when people hear the term “renovations,” they think of major changes that will require a lot of money upfront. Thankfully, this is not always the case. In fact, there are various ways to improve the value of your property without breaking the bank. That said, if you are in a position to invest a larger sum for renovations, this opens the door for even greater financial opportunities. In either case, let’s take a look at the top 5 ways to improve your property value:

Invest in Quality Landscaping

Real estate agents often refer to the “curb appeal” of a home, and this quality should not be underestimated. The first impression that your house gives to prospective home buyers is very important, and this starts with the yard. Taking care of your lawn, garden, shrubbery, and trees can help make your property standout from the rest. If you feel that your house is lacking in visual appeal, consider planting native trees and/or perennial flowers around your home. If you don’t have a green thumb, it may be best to turn to professional landscapers.

Add a Fresh Coat of Paint

Weather and regular wear and tear can cause paint to fade over time. So, if you are renovating on a budget, repainting the interior and exterior of your house is one of the best ways to amp up the selling price. However, it is important to wait until you are prepared to sell your house before you start painting. If you paint your house too early, and do not plan on selling it for many years, you may need to paint it a second time before finding a buyer.

Change the Door Knobs

This one is extremely easy and relatively cheap, but it makes all the difference in the world. Old, dingy door knobs on doors and cabinets draw the eye, and may scare off potential buyers. However, if the door knobs shine and have a modern, appealing design, you can set a higher selling price and make a much better first impression during an open house.

Focus on the Kitchen and Bathrooms

While other parts of the house are important, the real estate world puts a lot of importance on kitchens and bathrooms. Both of these rooms have a tendency to age quickly, partly because they require materials and appliances that wear with regular use. Replacing countertops, appliances, cabinets, and light fixtures can transform your rooms, making them more aesthetically pleasing. While budgeting your renovations is important, it is also important that you don’t buy cheap materials just to save a buck. Spending a little bit more for the good stuff now could make you a lot more money when you are ready to sell.

Increase the Square Footage

The square footage is one of the most important factors when calculating property value; the bigger the property, the more it is worth. Obviously, increasing the square footage of your home is no easy task. It will take time and a pretty large investment. However, there are some relatively inexpensive ways to add space and value to your home. For example, adding a garage is generally cheaper than adding an additional room to your home, as it does not necessarily require the same insulation or materials as a normal room.

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The Proper Steps to Take to Get Your Dream Home This Summer

Excitement is in the air. You’re so close to finally closing on your dream home that you’ve always wanted. The summertime is an incredibly popular time of the year where people will close on a home that they have always wanted. However, many first-time buyers are unaware of the loan closing process. This can lead to some confusion along the way. Fortunately, we here at Clean Title LLC. have some information for you that will prepare you for the home closing process. This will greatly alleviate any stress that you may experience along the way and give you some insight on how to successfully close on a home.

Have Patience When Choosing Your Closing Date

The closing date is the day that you finally get the keys to your new home. You and your family have always wanted to move into such an incredible house and the summertime is the perfect time to do it. However, the lender that you choose to work with will end up setting the closing date for you. They will have more wiggle room to determine the date. It is important that you stay patient during this time and do your best to negotiate the date if necessary. You’re so close to getting your new home. You only have a little bit further to go!

Preparing for The Closing on Your Home

Here are a few things that you will want to make sure that you have in order whenever you near the closing date:

  • Curative services prepared
  • Title insurance agent
  • Home inspector contacted
  • Escrow officer contacted

Clean Title LLC can provide these services for you to ensure that your home is prepared for the closing date that is slowly approaching. This will ensure that everything runs smoothly whenever the closing date approaches.

Understanding How Long it Takes to Close on a House

People can become impatient during the closing process. This anxiety that a new homeowner feels is absolutely understandable. You will no doubt feel the jitters whenever you decide to get your first home with your spouse. Fortunately, we have some facts that will help quell your concerns during this time.

  • The average amount of time it takes to close on a home is 41 days.
  • 1/3 of all closing processes face some kind of hiccup along the way.
  • Less than half of these hiccups are caused by some kind of financial problem that happens along the way.

Don’t feel discouraged if some of these statistics apply to you. Millions of Americans go through some kind of ordeal at some point or another whenever it comes to getting their dream home. Clean Title LLC is here to work with you every step of the way to ensure that you get the home that you have always wanted.

What Documents to Bring on Closing Day

Finally, you have succeeded in making it to C-Day! You have been waiting patiently for some time now. Fortunately, there isn’t much left to do besides provide important documents and move your belongings into your home. However, it is important that you bring specific documents to your mortgage loan officer on this day.

  • Photo ID
  • Certified check or cashier’s check that can be given to your loan officer
  • Outstanding documents for the title company to verify

What Else Can I Expect on Closing Day?

There are just a few more documents to sign on closing day that will ensure that the house is officially yours. You will need to do these actions to get your home.

  • Pay any remaining costs that are needed.
  • You will sign documents to verify that you are the owner of this home.
  • You will also sign legal documents that verify the mortgage of trust for your home.

Getting The Dream Home That You’ve Always Wanted

Many Americans want to get the home of their dreams. It can be difficult to raise a family otherwise whenever it comes to providing a stable household and enough room to grow. Fortunately, there are always options available to get the home that you’ve always wanted. However, the process is confusing at first for first-time homebuyers. Clean Title LLC hopes that you use this guide to make the home closing process much smoother. You will want to work with real estate professionals that you can trust during this time. Clean Title LLC is here to provide assistance during the homebuying process. Be sure to contact us today to schedule your professional appointment. Our team is standing by to help you with all of your real estate needs.

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Choosing the Best Location for Real Estate Investment

Choosing where to make your next investment in real estate is a tough decision. Unless you are trying to flip houses, the location you choose will be yours for the long haul. So, you should put a great deal of thought into choosing where you want your money (and possibly your family) living for the next 20, 30, or even 50 years. But, how can you do it? What makes one location better than another for real estate investments? The tips below will help you answer these questions and take you one step closer to owning your dream property.

Stick With What You Know

If you’re going to invest tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars into property, be sure that you know the area. You shouldn’t invest in property that is somewhere you are not familiar with; moreover, you should never invest in property sight unseen. If you’ve lived in an area for years, you have a deep understanding of the potential for growth, local regulations, and other information that you would not have access to somewhere else. However, not everyone wants to invest in their hometown, which brings us to the next tip…

Do Your Research

If you don’t want to invest in an area that you are already familiar with, then make sure to do your research. This means learning about the aggregate property values in your neighborhood over time. It also means researching local government ordinances related to owning/renting/selling/buying property. If possible, talk with a few locals about growth potential in their area (new businesses moving in, average resident income, etc). This way, you can have a much better idea of what you’re getting into and the potential for your property to increase in value over the years.

Look At Specific Data Points

It’s easy to say “do your research,” but what does that actually mean? Here are a few of the most important metrics that you should look at for a given location:

  • Job growth and economic stability
  • Population growth
  • Price/rent ratio
  • Crime rates
  • School districts
  • Public transportation
  • More localized and subjective information:
    • Walkability
    • Convenience
    • Visual appeal

Though all of these factors are important, you will need to set priorities. For example, if you plan to live in this new location, things such as crime rates and convenience will probably be much higher on your list. If you have children, you will want a quality school district. Depending on your transportation needs, you will want good public transportation. However, if you are simply looking at buying property as a financial investment (and not a possible living arrangement), you will want to factor all of these elements into your equation.

Give Yourself Options

You may fall in love with the first property you see, but you should always look into multiple locations. This way, you can compare some of the data points outlined above and determine which location will ensure the best long-term investment for you. More often than not, this forces you to make some tough decisions, but it also helps make sure that you don’t sink thousands of dollars into something you’ll regret.

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