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1 Minute Housing Market Newsletter
Get the current real estate statistics for the Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and Albany housing markets

 November 2017 Newsletter 



Syracuse & Central NY real estate housing report and stats Oct 2017

 Click here 


Rochester- Finger Lakes Market Update May 15, 2017

April Market Sees Strong Demand With Prices Up, Sales Down

Buyer demand did not abate and competition remained fierce in April driving Median Sales Prices up 5.9 percent to $125,000 compared to April 2016 in the Monroe/Finger Lakes/Southern Tier region.
"The percentage of original price received was 94.4% indicating that buyers are motivated to make deals happen relatively quickly once they have submitted an offer," says GRAR President, Linda Wilson.
New Listings in the GRAR area were down 17.9 percent from last year to 2,020. Total homes on the market dropped 34.1 percent to 3,567 units, compared to 5,410 in April 2016. Closed Sales decreased 12.5 percent to 939. "Positive economic conditions, such as job creation, higher wages, and increased business spending are improving consumer confidence and indicate that housing demand will remain strong in the foreseeable future," Wilson continued.


(Feb. 2017 ) Buffalo- Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls, NY and Syracuse, NY among most affordable housing markets in the Nation

 Click here to learn more. 



January 2017 Real estate Newsletter


The number of homes sold in 2016 hit a new high, the Greater Rochester Association of REALTORS announced today.  A total of 14,278 transactions were recorded in the Greater Rochester, Finger Lakes, and Southern Tier markets last year, a remarkable increase of 19.3% over 2015 sales of 11,971.   Previously, the most productive year was 2005 with 13,312 closings.  
Prices also held steady across the area.  Monroe county saw a slight increase in median sales price to $133,000, up from $132,000 the previous year.
"Even though the number of homes for sale has been declining, we saw a record number of sales last year," noted GRAR President Linda Wilson.  "Significantly greater sales occurred in many communities and in all directions of our 11-county region," Wilson added.
The City of Rochester reported a 19.5 percent increase in closings as compared to 2015.  East Rochester saw a 40.5 percent gain in sales and Gates a 31.1 percent gain. While Henrietta saw a 4 percent drop in the number of closings year-over-year, it's median sales price went up 7.4 percent from $134,950 to $145,000. 
Regionally, sales mirrored those in the Rochester metropolitan area. Wyoming County (+12.2 percent), Livingston County (+11.2 percent), Genesee County (+10.8 percent) and Yates County (+8.2 percent), all reported healthy gains over 2015.
"Prices held steady across the entire region, but did not make the gains one might expect given the conditions of low inventory, low interest rates, multiple offers, and higher demand," Wilson observed. "This trend has to do with the stability of our regional market.  We usually fall in the middle of the road as compared to other areas in the nation, escaping the high-highs and low-lows of the curve."
"Economic indicators, such as lowering unemployment rates and gradually increasing wages, remain favorable. With continued historically-low interest rates, and steady prices, it is a good time to be purchasing a home." GRAR CEO Jim Yockel said. "Across the region, Pending sales are also up, indicating a strong start for the first quarter of 2017. If enough homeowners opt to put their home on the market to fill the demand, we could see another very strong year in 2017."


August 2016- Mortgage Rates hit lowest in history! 3.36% for a 30 yr fixed.
Great time to sell for the highest price possible with the low rates enabling buyers to qualify for more and listing inventory not as high!


April 2016 - Good News! NYS home sales rise to highest 1st quarter growth level in a decade

Read More



Winter 2016 Newsletter with Upstate NY real estate activity


Late Fall 2015 Newsletter & Update

Find out all the local trends and stats for your city

Click Here


Interactive map to see how your market did over the last few years to current

April 2015


2015 Best Year for home sales in 8 yrs??


Spring 2015 Newsletter & Update
Find out all the local trends and stats for your city 





Sample virtual tour video available with our Flat Fee MLS Plans
(Rochester, Buffalo & Albany,  Syracuse has a different version)




Keep these "gems" in mind when marketing a house



Not sure how accurate this is but I thought this was pretty neat for finding the value of your home real quick.



1/27/14     Enough said?


Jan. 17, 2014

Here are the 2013 4th quarter numbers on sales and appreciation in the Greater Rochester area. It is showing a mixed bag.




Small Home Improvements With Big Returns for Sellers!


Borrow From Retirement to Pay for a Home?

Courtesy of Dave Ramsey

Legally you're allowed to take $10,000 from your Roth IRA to help pay for a home but is that a smart decision?

Dave is a huge fan of Roth IRAs for retirement investing mainly because of their tax-free benefits and flexibility. But the Roth also includes provisions that allow you to withdraw money from your account. While this might sound convenient, taking money from your Roth IRA is a terrible move.

The $300,000 Down Payment

Roth IRA owners can withdraw up to $10,000 for a first-time home purchase. But doing that can damage your finances in a couple of ways:
Obviously, it will take away from what you could have saved for retirement. A lump sum of $10,000 can grow to $300,000 if it's invested for 30 years. Think of it this way: You're not taking $10,000 from your account. You're taking $300,000 from your retirement. Using money from your Roth IRA for a down payment on a home could also set you up for disaster. It would be tempting to use that $10,000 to buy a more expensive home, one that you can't truly afford and while still saving for retirement, college, etc.,

Dangerous Ground. Technically, you can withdraw the money you put into your Roth IRA tax and penalty-free at any time. You can even withdraw your earnings as long as your account is at least five years old and you meet certain qualifying circumstances. Some of those include hardships such as disability or paying medical insurance premiums when you're unemployed. While it might give you some peace of mind knowing that if push comes to shove, you can access your Roth IRA funds, it's a bad idea to treat your retirement savings like a huge emergency fund. If you follow Dave's Baby Steps, you know you should have an emergency fund of 3-6 months of expenses saved before you start investing. That way you can keep your retirement money invested for retirement and still be prepared for life's little surprises.

1 Minute Housing Report Newsletter  

Current Issue

Find out about current market trends and local conditions in the top 150 metropolitan markets in the USA



The Associated Press, ALBANY, N.Y.
  • New Yorkers receiving the STAR property tax rebate will have to re-register for the local school tax breaks because of reports of widespread abuse and fraud.
  • The law concerning the $3 billion New York State School Tax Relief program is part of the state budget bills now being passed in Albany.
  • Homeowners will have a year to re-apply for the program, with a deadline of April 1, 2014.
  • New York homeowners who make less than $500,000 and live in their property are usually eligible. STAR exempts the first $30,000 of the full value of a home from school taxes.
  • New Yorkers 65 and older may qualify for the enhanced STAR program. That exempts the first $63,300 of the full value of a home.
  • For many homeowners statewide, the result is a tax break of hundreds of dollars.
  • Last month, Rockland County District Attorney Thomas Zugibe reported that his detectives found $679,000 of fraud or incorrect filing in just five towns. He said the tax break was illegally applied to second homes, and some landlords were taking the credit for their homes and for rental properties and rooming houses, too.
  • State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said abuses and faulty filings cost the state $13 million in the 2011-12 fiscal year and will cost an estimated $73 million by the 2015-16 fiscal year unless changes were made.
  • Homeowners can apply for the STAR exemption on the website of the state Taxation and Finance Department.

 STAR exemption:

Here's a 2 minute look at our successful $395 Flat Fee MLS Program if you want to save HUGE bucks on the sale of your house!



NY STAR Program will reduce your property's how


New York State School Tax Relief Program or STAR lowers property taxes for owner-occupied primary residences.  There are two types of benefits, Basic STAR and Enhanced STAR.There is no age limit to Basic STAR and the program is available to property owners earning less than $500,000 per year.  Basic STAR exempts the first $30,000 of the full value of a home from school taxes and once approved, you need not reapply each year, unless you move to a new primary residence. Property owners who are turning 65 or older this year with a total annual income of $79,050 or less are eligible for Enhanced STAR.  Enhanced STAR provides even greater savings for homeowners by exempting the first $63,300 of the full value of your home from school taxes.The STAR program is administered locally, you can obtain and file applications at your town assessors office through March 1st. The deadline for residents in the City of Rochester is February 1st each year.You can also click here ( or call the STAR hotline at 1-877-678-2769 for more information.

GRAR 2012 4th Quarter Housing Stats- Real Estate Activity  (Greater Rochester Area)

Click Here To See Stats


Want to try selling your house on your own "For Sale By Owner" ? It's not great odds but you have a chance. Here is a simplified list of what you need to do. It took 30 years of real estate experience to put this together from the school of hard knocks.

Take a look at our free FSBO Guide

By Bob Piazza

GRAR 2012 3rd quarter Housing Stats (Greater Rochester Area)

Click Here To See Stats

An animated look at Northern Star Realty's $395 Flat Fee MLS Program


Rochester, NY Voted Best Place To Buy A Home By Forbes Magazine

See Article Here

How To Lower Your Property Taxes

Very Good Article


Watch Out For Flat Fee Middlemen!

NOTE: Don't be fooled by ridiculously low flat fee MLS offers by online flat fee middlemen & FSBO websites. There are several. They have multiple names, out of state area codes, and no address listed. They collect your money and refer you to an unknown broker. After they collect your money, they don't care what kind of service you get. They share what you pay them with the broker and the broker gets very little of the charge but makes up for it by selling you extras like photos, open house listings, description changes, contract review, personal support, CMA pricing reports, extra website listings, renewals beyond 6 months, etc. Your end price will not be the advertised price. The same holds true for lowball competitors. We do none of that deception, you are dealing with the broker/owner Robert Piazza an honest local NYS licensed Realtor in Hilton, NY. We have a proven track record in Western  & Central NY and tell you up front what you get, there are no surprises! You are already going to be saving $3,000-$6,000 in commissions on average, don't make the mistake of dealing with the online middlemen to try to save a tiny bit more and have it cost you more in the end. Know who you are dealing with and deal with us directly. The old saying is pay for what you get! When you get a purchase offer, you will be glad we have your back!

See What 60 Minutes Has to Say About 6% Commissions

Watch Short Video Here


10 Ways To Turn Off A Buyer

See  Article


A 2 minute look at Syracuse & Central NY's best  Flat Fee MLS
value. If you are a "for sale by owner", you have to see this.
It's the best of both worlds!


Syracuse Area Tax Bills and Statistical Data

This site is helpful for Onondaga County if you want to see tax bills like school or town & county. There also is a section on finding statistical info on properties like square footage and lot sizes. Click Here

GRAR 2012 1st Quarter Housing Stats (Greater Rochester Area)

See Statistics Here PDF File


"To Do"  List for sellers on repairs and maintenance when selling

Exterior  The condition of your home's exterior is most important when it comes to buyer appeal.- House number should be easy to read- Lights on timers to ensure house is lit up after sunset- Eaves troughs, and down spouts in good repair- Garage/car port clean and tidy- Litter picked up- Cracked or broken window panes replaced- Doorbell and door hardware in good repair- Touch up trim paint on doors, window frames, fascia, etc.- Mow, edge and weed the lawn frequently until the home is sold.- Overgrown shrubbery should be cut back to show as much of the exterior as possible.- A low-cost investment in seasonal flowers or ground cover will add a personal touch.- Inspect the roof for necessary repairs and any visible broken shingles or tiles.- Stucco water stains can be repaired using a mild bleaching agent.- Fences should be mended and painted.- Wash all windows inside and outside.

Interior  Warm and welcoming!- Lights should be on and drapes should be left open during daylight- Heat set at a comfortable temperature- Fresh flowers/plants in various rooms- Chipped plaster and paint touched up and repaired- Doors and cupboards properly closed- Leaky taps and toilets repaired- Burned out light bulbs replaced- Squeaky doors oiled- Mirrors, fixtures, and taps cleaned and polished- Seals around tubs and basins in good repair- Floors cleaned, garbage containers emptied- Inside of closets and cupboards neat and tidy- Valuable property, out of reach, out of sight, or locked away- Pets absent, where possible, or contained during showings- All torn screens should be repaired or replaced.- Avoid repainting the entire house unless current colors are very loud or offbeat.- White or light pastels are the easiest to work with and they make your rooms look larger.- Fireplace lit in cooler weather- Air conditioner turned on in warm weather- Countertops neat and polished- Appliances cleaned- Inside of closets and cupboards should be neat and tidy.


A Most Helpful Site About Property Taxes And Info In Monroe County

Use this site to find your true taxes for the Northern Star Realty Flat Fee MLS Program. Also allows you to type in a address and get public information like true taxes, assessment info, previous sale information etc. All hard to find stuff on one site.

Northern Star Realty
Div. of  Northern Star Real Estate, LLC
25 Hill Rd.
Hilton, NY 14468

Rochester 585-392-8222
Buffalo       716-240-4825
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