Area Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

May 12, 2020

Ultimate Guide to Buying or Renting in Jonesboro


Buying or renting. It is one of the toughest discussions people have when purchasing or renting a home. We have seen the good and the bad with both. Today though, we hope to break it down on which one is the better decision for you. So, let’s talk about what it looks like to make the decision between either buying a home or renting a home.


Let us start by saying we have gotten this question a lot. It is one of the popular topics to discuss, especially in Northeast Arkansas. The answer, at least in our opinion, is it's really both. It absolutely depends on your current situation. People tend to think that buying is more favorable because you own a home and people also believe renting is better because you can save. When it comes down to it, you must look at your lifestyle and where you plan to be in the future. For instance, some questions you may need to ask yourself before you are looking to buy, or rent are:


  • What are my goals or my plans for the next five years?
  • What's my budget?
  • How much money am I willing to spend of that budget?


So, there's a lot of thought that needs to really go into a decision like buying or renting because it is truly one of the biggest decisions that you'll ever make.



What are your plans for the future?


One of the questions we typically ask our clients is “How long do you plan on living in Northeast Arkansas or living in Jonesboro?” Because a rule of thumb for us is that if you're paying your personal closing costs and other small fees, you've got to plan on being in that home at least a minimum of four years.

Why typically four years? The reason being is because it takes about four years for you even to recoup just those closing costs that you pay out to your lender that's giving you that loan. A lot of people, if they plan on staying for a shorter period than four years, begin to start off upside down from what has been paid for the home originally.


However, with the massive growth of Jonesboro recently whether it is new younger families moving in, younger couples just first starting out, people moving from out of town for a new job, and even entering college at Arkansas State University; most people are just not sure how long they're going to be living in northeast Arkansas.


So, when you are looking to buy or rent, knowing that the area is growing can help your decision on which one to choose. For people looking to rent, they don't realize that in Jonesboro there is a very large amount of rental property. It's not all apartments, we promise. Although we have a good number of apartments in Jonesboro, there are a lot of rental homes as well. Right now, in late 2019, a little over 50% of all of Jonesboro is living in a rental home or space.


One of the major topics that have come up about renting or buying, and it's really taken years of experience for me to come to this realization, is that there are actually exceptions to this rule of living in your home for four years until you recoup or gain from your purchase.


You see a lot of times individuals or kids coming to Arkansas State University or NYIT here in Jonesboro decide to purchase a home. The reason being is because you must look at that piece of property, if you don’t need privacy and can rent rooms, as a possible income producing property for you. Which by the time that four years is up, you have actually made something back.


It becomes an easy decision sometimes for that to take place for families sending kids to college. We have had clients look at homes, bought them, and they've been here for three or four years to then turn right around and sell that piece of property.


Now, we know that Jonesboro has grown the last three or four years and we have seen an increase in prices that we didn't necessarily see in the past.


So, people that have bought homes several years ago are seeing a great appreciation now, but that's not always the case. We tend to be slightly conservative and we always want to make sure that if you bought a property and get ready to sell it that you would know how much you are going to gain or lose.

If you are a first-time home buyer, you may be excited with the amount the bank will lend you. However, when you are purchasing a home don’t forget the additional costs of utilities and regular maintenance of that home.


Do you have a budget?


We always recommend setting a monthly budget for your home payment but know that the budget doesn’t include the possibility of an air conditioner breaking down or a water leak from the fridge. Those unknown possibilities may cause harm to your financial situation. If they do, then you may want to look at renting. Renting a home or an apartment gives you the ability of having a monthly payment that typically covers utilities and maintenance.


If you go buy and spend too much on a home than your initial budget, then after the first three or four months the romance is over. That fabulous new home smell is now gone. You now are stuck with a house that feels like a great burden rather than the initial joy you started with when you purchased the home.


Your payment and bills for that home are too high which is only going to change the way that you do life. We are huge proponents in making your home fit your lifestyle instead of trying to limit your lifestyle to fit your new home.


What have we learned?


At the end of the day, we realize everyone wants to own their own home. It’s the American dream! There is a time and place to buy a home rather than renting. However, depending on your financial situation and how long you plan to live in Northeast Arkansas, that could determine if renting is the better option than purchasing a home.


If you want some sound advice or you're wrestling with some of these questions right now, then give one of us a call at 870.273.0633 or email us at We would love to sit down and have a quick advising session with you.


Ultimately, we want you to feel confident whether you are buying or selling your next home.

Posted in Market Updates
May 11, 2020

5 Reasons to Use a Professional Real Estate Agent

Have you ever wondered why people use a real estate agent? I mean a true professional real estate agent. There are people that have a real estate license but mainly use it as a hobby rather than a real career. The most asked question we get a lot of times is "What kind of value can a real estate agent bring to me?"

A Professional Real Estate Agent


For starters, the biggest problem in northeast Arkansas right now is having a professional real estate agent. There are a lot of real estate agents out there. It seems that everyone nowadays knows someone that sells real estate. What we are referring to however is someone that does this for a living. So what value does someone like that bring to the table? 

To answer that question, we always refer to a video of Dave Ramsey that we watched not too long ago. He was talking about how real estate is just like anything else. Where 80% of the people make about 20% of the money in real estate and about 20% of the people in real estate are the ones who are selling about 80% of the market. So, it's very important to find a professional realtor as you're starting the buying process. The reason being is that a professional real estate agent knows the market and is very experienced with any circumstances or situations you may go through when purchasing or selling a home. 

Real Estate Agent Commission


Once you have found your professional real estate agent, hopefully us, then the next biggest question we get before we guide them through the process is "What's this going to cost me?" 

The earth-shattering truth of the matter is that as a buyer it normally isn't going to cost you much at all. A real estate agent's commission to most people seems to be a big mystery for most folks. 

The real question that most people need to ask is "Without using a professional realtor, what can it cost me?". The problem nowadays is that when people don't use a realtor, they run into not knowing all the things that take place during a home purchase like all the legalities and timeframes that go along with it. 

For instance, is your home buying contract legally correct? Are you leaving money on the table from not using a professional real estate agent? Could you be paying too much for a home because you don't know the market? Not having a professional real estate agent that helps people buy and sell homes everyday could cost you a lot more than commission. 

However, when commission is discussed, most people don't realize that typically the seller is the one paying the commissions for a realtor. So, as a buyer most of the time you have virtually nothing to lose using a professional real estate agent and getting someone to help advise you through that process is a tremendous value. One reason using a professional real estate agent is because we are thinking about the things that you probably even haven't considered. 

We're looking five years or more down the road to understand if your purchase is a good investment. The reason being is our hope is not just to sell you a home, but to help represent you when you get ready to sell it in the future. So, if we haven't helped you make a good decision now, you're not going to be so happy with us five, ten, or twenty years down the road either. So those are all things value wise that we're trying to consider when helping you through your real estate process. 

From the selling standpoint of not having a professional real estate agent, the question you should be asking is "Have I left something undone in selling this property that can come back and bite me later?'. When you are dealing with people's money, they'll come back after you if things were done wrong or they thought something was misrepresented. 


5 Reasons to Choose a Professional


Whether you are buying or selling a home, here are the 5 main reasons having a professional real estate agent help you with buying or selling your next home:



One of biggest reason of using a professional real estate agent is to have a survey done of the property. Did you know almost 90% of all home purchases don't get a survey. That is insane! People just don't think about it when buying a home. Just because you're buying a home and it has a fence on the property doesn't mean that the fence was built necessarily on the right property line. Guess what that leads to when you start discussions of altering the fence and who owns it? A big old headache and a ton of arguments. So why not have that survey scheduled by a trusted professional real estate agent that has the contacts to get the job done right and ahead of time.



Another important reason for using a professional real estate agent is making sure that the appraisal process is done correctly. Having an appraisal done will answer the questions of "Am I paying too much for this home?" or "Am I getting it at a good buy?". That's something that you need to know prior to writing that contract to make sure that you are protected and if the final numbers of the contract are realistic for a purchase.


Home Inspection

Banks love to see the appraisal information cause It helps give them peace of mind knowing that you're buying exactly what you think you're buying, but the next step for you is knowing if what you're buying is in the condition that you think it might be. A lot of people will do a quick run through of a home when they are buying. They may check everything to the best of their knowledge, and it may seem fine. However, do you have a professional home inspector that is going to be crawling in the attic, walking up on the roof, and crawling underneath the house if that's required? Before you answer that question, decide is your home inspector even someone that you can trust? With a professional real estate agent, we work to provide honest and trustworthy people like home inspectors to do their job right and on time when you purchase your home.


Legal Work

There's just a whole team that is involved when buying or selling a home. As realtors it's not just us that help you get this deal and make you feel comfortable with it. We have connections and we have a whole group of people that we work with to make sure that at the end of the day you're happy, and you will be for a long time. 

The other aspect that needs to be considered when using a professional real estate agent is just all the legality parts of buying and selling a home. There are so many things that go on behind the scenes that people just don't know. For instance, does the person selling the home legally have the right to sell the home in the first place? It's very important, probably the most important thing, that when you get the keys to that house that it's legally yours. There are a lot of people that are involved in making that happen and as a professional real estate agent it is part of our job to check the list and make sure it gets done. 


Market Conditions

One of the most underestimated value of using a professional real estate agent is just we are in this business day in and day out, and so we hear of stuff that's popping up before it even happens. One of the things that gets talked about is how northeast Arkansas is such a seller's market right now for the year 2020. It is just a great time to be selling a home. So, as a buyer you really need every advantage that you can get. If a house is priced right, in the right location, and we just happen to be in the right place; then a lot of times if we are working with you we can call you up and say "Hey, I think I've got the right home for you." 

Whether you are looking at buying a home or considering selling, the big thing is just making sure that you're protected. Use a professional real estate agent that has your interest at heart and will do their job to the highest standards. We would love to talk with you about buying or selling so you can move forward with confidence. Call Tim Ray at 870-974-3280 or Trenton Hoggard at 870-931-8784 today. 

Posted in Market Updates
July 31, 2017

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We can definitely fill you in on details that are not listed on the report and help you determine the best home for you. If you are wondering if now is the time to sell, please try out our INSTANT home value tool. You’ll get an estimate on the value of your property in today’s market. Either way, we hope to hear from you soon as you get to know our neighborhoods and local real estate market better.

Posted in Market Updates