Home Expo Fun and a Success!

Commercial Closings – We Can Help

Tips for a Land Contracts:

  • Make sure the Land Contract specifies payment terms – including repayment amount, interest rate, and any late fees charged.
    • Payment terms may involve a down payment or a balloon payment.
    • Pay attention to default provisions or prepayment clauses.
    • The interest rate for a Land Contract cannot exceed 11%.
  • The Land Contract should specify the date of possession. Typically, possession occurs at closing, but parties are free to negotiate terms of possession.
    • Remember that a Land Contract does not convey legal title to the purchaser, instead the purchaser acquires equitable title with the right of possession.
  • Check for a clause requiring the Seller to prepare and convey a deed once the Land Contract is paid in full.
    • Once the land contract has been paid in full, the Purchaser is entitled to a deed from the Seller conveying legal title to the property.
  • Both parties should confirm whether there are any limits on either parties’ ability to mortgage the property.
    • Both the Seller and Purchaser have the right to grant a land contract mortgage.
  • Who pays property taxes? Typically, the Purchase is responsible for paying the property taxes on a Land Contract, so the agreement should contain a clause to that effect.
  • Land Contract transactions must still comply with State law governing lead paid disclosure and seller disclosures
    • As with any other sale of property, a purchase agreement is essential.
    • It is always recommended that a Purchaser have the property inspected, regardless of seller disclosures.
  • Do not forget to file the necessary Affidavits with the Township Assessors office. That includes:
    • Property Transfer Affidavit – required to be filed within 45 days of the transfer of property
    • Principal Residence Exemption – if the Purchaser is claiming the property as Principal Residence
    • Rescind of Principal Residence – if the Seller had held the property as their Principal Residence prior to the sale

Michigan Five County Real Estate Pricing Continues Up

March Sales figures for homes sold continued the increase in value and pricing despite a significant drop in the number of homes sold and a lower total volume of sales.

Total sales for March 2022 were 187 versus 240 in March 2021. Average days on the market dropped from 92 in March 2021 to 73 in March 2022.

View entire report by clicking here or the image below.


Tax Reporting on Real Estate Transactions

Title companies are responsible for reporting the sale of real estate transactions to the IRS. The form used is a 1099-S and is signed by the Seller at closing.

The 1099-S form notifies the IRS of the sale and states the seller’s gross proceeds.

A taxpayer is allowed to exclude from gain up to $250,000.00 ($500,000 for some married taxpayers filing jointly) on the sale of a taxpayer’s principal residence, provided that, the property has been owned and used as the taxpayer’s principal residence for a certain period of time (at least two of the last five years before sale of the property).

In exchange for the 1099-S form, a Seller may be asked to sign a “Certification for No Information Reporting on the Sale of Exchange of Principal Residence.” This form completed and signed by the Seller is used to determine whether a sale of real property must be reported to the IRS. If the Seller answers “yes” to certain assurances, no information reporting is required.

These assurances include:

  • The Seller owned and used the residence as their principal residence for a period of two or more years during the five-year period prior to the sale of the property
  • The Seller has not sold another principal residence within the last two years
  • No portion of the residence has been used for business or rental purposes, and
  • That the sale of the residence is $250,000 or less OR $500,000 or less for married couples filing jointly (conditioned on the first three assurances)

If you sold property, it is recommended to consult a Certified Public Accountant to discuss the tax implications of that sale and whether you are able to exclude the gain from your sale.

No Slowdown In Prices in Five County Michigan Real Estate

There’s been no slow down in real estate pricing during February 2022 for the five county area of Michigan.

There were fewer sales, fewer days on market, and higher average, median, and total sales when comparing February 2022 to February 2021. The good news is inventory has not dropped too much to meet the demand. There were 148 listings in February 2022, down 14% from last February listings of 172.

Every County experienced a higher sales volume, except Kalkaska county. Their total sales, volume, average and median prices were down from February 2021.

Leelanau saw the greatest percentage increase in dollar volume, average price and median price.

See the entire report by clicking here or the image below.

Mortgage Rates Rise – Applications Drop

The rising interest rates for mortgages are slowing potential home buyers and individuals interested in refinancing their homes.

Nationwide, applications for refinancing a home dropped 56% from one year ago. Total mortgage applications decreased 13 %.

The average contract interest rate for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage was up slightly from 4.05% to 4.06%.

Higher mortgage rate and the steady trend of higher prices pushed applications lower. Continued rising interest rates will continue to challenge many potential buyers and will begin to slow price growth in the future.

Fanni Mae predicts $2.72 Trillion in mortgage originations in 2021 and $2.47 trillion in 2022

Come to the Women’s Council of Realtors

Michigan Five County Real Estate Continues Hot

There’s been no slow down in real estate sales for the five county area of Michigan.

There were more sales, fewer days on market, and higher average, median, and total sales when comparing January 2022 to January 2021. The good news is inventory is remaining fairly steady, but slightly down with 176 listings in 2022 versus 184 in January 2021.

Every County experienced a higher sales volume, except Antrim county. While their volume went down, their average, and median prices went up and days on the market was nearly half.

Grand Traverse had the highest percentage growth in dollar volume with a 39% growth. This was assisted by $3.5 million dollar home sale.

Click Here to see the entire report.