Real Estate as an Investment Strategy

Our economy is booming: construction has plowed full steam ahead completing one project after another, cash is flowing, buyers are spending, jobs are available, and in theory we all have more money. But what usually happens when we have more money is we spend more. That’s when it is prudent to invest those extra pennies to ensure there is money later on, whether it’s for retirement or specific goals or dreams.

With the rise in the housing market and buying incentives for first timers, first-time home buyers are testing homeownership waters. They’re taking a step to invest in their future. But what if you already own your own home? How can real estate help your future?

One rule in the investment world is to diversify. “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” – an old cliché that has stuck is still true. You have your 401K and IRA and you diversify within each of them to match your specific retirement needs. But another way, and often overlooked, is diversifying your retirement portfolio through real estate. Purchasing another house and renting it out is a sure way to set aside future equity, not only for the house but more importantly for your retirement. A future investment like real estate continues to give a return long after the mortgage is paid off. Renters increase the equity of the house for you, and once the house is paid off you have extra monthly income to spend, save, or invest. If you’re retired at that point then the renter’s check will help supplement your retirement budget, and with Social Security’s uncertain future it’s sensible to plan for its absence.

Median house prices are on the rise, almost back to the pre-recession average sale prices. Not to mention that there is upward movement as houses are appreciating. Purchasing an additional house as an investment is in your best interest before house prices continue to increase. The market is predicted to continue to do well as many sources predict the economy will continue its upward momentum.

Another option is to rent out your current home and purchase an upgraded home. With all the new construction around the valley and subdivisions expanding, maybe your current home doesn’t match your needs as it did in the past. Or maybe it’s just time for something different.

Investment options don’t have to stop at single family dwellings either– there are multi-family housing units available. From duplexes, 4-plexes, and apartments there is a wide array of multi-family units to fit your budget and commitment level. Commercial real estate is another lucrative investment as well. Business buildings usually have several spaces to lease. With the economy thriving and low risk levels, more entrepreneurs are stepping into the business world and they will need places to conduct their work.

There are various options for investing and the right option can be your solution to further diversifying your investment strategy.

Real Estate Market Trends for 2017

blackboard-suit-tsAs the year is wrapping up, many wonder what the next year will hold in store for the real estate market. So far the outlook is positive. Even though there are some doubts that the current growth cycle is about to come to an end, there are many more positive perspectives that the current growth cycle has more life left in it yet. Here are some trends to watch for in 2017:

Earlier this year as Britain made their exit from the European Union and uncertainty took its place European markets are struggling to find solid ground again. In the process to find stability, the U.S. is safe ground for foreign investors to take a breather while the cards fall. Uncertain global markets make the U.S. market appear stronger and more appealing to global investors. Real estate in the U.S. is likely to continue to be favorable as its growth continues.

Although European markets are suffering a setback and China’s market is decreasing, other foreign investors are looking for investments with high yields and appreciation. Real estate in the U.S. is the likely choice for such investment as it is seen as the most stable world-wide. With uncertainty in such major foreign markets investors want stable footing.

It is likely that the feds will raise the cap rate one more time before 2016 is out, however the raise should be minimal as they don’t want to upset current trends. It is predicted that even with an increase cap rates won’t go much higher. Regardless, there will be movement as investors seek to capitalize on opportunities.

Supply is low and demand is high, which will help continue to fuel the growth cycle. After the recession, lenders were more than cautious about commercial construction lending, resulting in fewer available properties today.

Oil prices dropped significantly in 2015 and continued to drop into the first of this year. As of yet, prices have not recovered to half their high price from 2015. With oil manufacturers just now slowing production there is a significant surplus. With lower gas prices, that frees monies to spend on other commodities. Lower energy costs also positively influence construction costs fueling commercial improvements and growth.

So what do these trends mean to you? It means real estate is alive and well and is projected to continue to keep its momentum in the next year without any foreseeable setbacks. There might not be a lot of commercial construction as banks have stricter lending requirements and are looking to minimize risks, but there will be improvements to existing structures. Global investors will continue to look to the U.S. market due to its stability, and foreign money will fuel the U.S. economy. Money made available from lower gas and energy prices will shift into other spending arenas. Housing will maintain its curve as the U.S. economy continues to flourish. In other words, things look great for 2017.

Silverhawk Realty



RREALTOR® or no REALTOR®? It’s a serious question homeowners are asking themselves these days, especially considering a commission percentage of total sale for the agents. There are plenty of online tools and self-help websites to dig through with some helpful information and advice if you want to go it alone. However, even with the internet and information overload for do-it-yourselfers For Sale by Owner (FSBO) house sales have declined from 19% to 9% in the last 20 years. Sure you could do it yourself, but wouldn’t you rather enlist the help of a professional who sells houses as their day job? When you hire a REALTOR®, because that is what you are doing – hiring a professional and their services – you get all their knowledge and experience. It is their job to sell homes. It’s what puts food on the table and pays their own mortgage and puts their children through school. As with any sales position effort equals income. It is in their best interest to get the most for your home. Most REALTOR® sales are $35,000 higher than FSBO sales, based on the national median sale price for 2015 for agent assisted sales ($245,000) and FSBO sales ($210,000). With such a significant difference, that makes a commission seem not so hard to swallow. Why would you want to jump over a dollar to save a dime? Most of wouldn’t just based on the effort alone, especially if jumping isn’t something we do daily.

Hiring a REALTOR® will get you access to their arsenal of co-trade professionals they use to help sell homes. They have appraisers and home inspectors under their favorites in their contact list. They have a list of home contractors – painters, finishers, plumbers, carpenters, and roofers, who they know and can vouch for their work and their prices. If it needs addressed an agent will indentify it and have a solution.

With their knowledge of the market, guidance on home viewings, trade knowledge, and their third party perspective, a REALTOR® will guide you through the process of selling your home. And they will guide the potential buyers through the process on the other end as well. There’s a reason why REALTOR’s show homes when homeowners are out: potential buyers feel more comfortable and don’t have to worry about offending current homeowners.

If you decided to post your house as a FSBO, there are lots of aspects to consider. For example how will you market your house, how will you schedule and balance the phone calls, home viewings, verifying buyers, and all the research to know what you’re doing? Because obviously you’re selling your home yourself because you want to save some money, but if you don’t do your homework you could potentially be selling yourself short, literally. So search online, read, find an online home value tool, assess your house, higher an appraiser, research the market, promote your house, talk to friends or colleagues who might know about FSBO, clean your house, stage your house to make it buyer friendly, take pictures…it all sounds exhausting. The big question is how motivated are you? Because you know how motivated a REALTOR® will be to sell your home.




Will Pryor – Featured Agent

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I am an Idaho Native, raised and went to school at Homedale High School. I have two wonderful children and I am a proud grandfather of 1 grandson. I love being involved in the communities!! I am the current president of the Homedale Lions Club. I have been a REALTOR® for over 13 years!!  I have worked a lot in the Canyon County Area, as well as the Owyhee County Area. I enjoy all aspect of Real Estate from New Development, New Construction to Horse Property’s as well as Farm and Ranch. Feel free to contact me at 208-866-2629 or visit my website at!!



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For Tracy Kasper, October was a memorable month. How do I know? Well, she’s my mother!

She was awarded the prestigious Realtor of the Year (ROTY) Award for Idaho REALTORS®, the 55th recipient. Every autumn, Idaho Realtors hold a conference; and this year it was at Coeur d’Alene Resort in beautiful northern Idaho on October 6th. As ROTY, Tracy is representing Idaho at the National Association of Realtors (NAR) on the Year ceremonies in Orlando, Florida.

Applicants for the ROTY award come from local nominations where they have received a local ROTY award or are nominated by a fellow broker or member. This prestigious award is competitive. ROTY award criteria is based on the following categories and weighted by involvement:
• 10% Realtor Spirit: Faithfulness to principals of organized real estate laws, and regulations of Board/Association and their Code of Ethics, time and effort in furthering principles among other brokers, press, and general public.
• 20% Civic Activities: Participation and offices held in local, state, and national civic and service clubs, membership in charitable organizations, political appointments or elections to public offices or commissions and activities within each. Community projects to enhance economic development, pride, and awareness.
• 10% Business and Educational Accomplishments: Business history since entering real estate, educational courses and designations earned.
• 15% Local Board Activities: Involvement in committee/task force, elected office assignments, special assignments and events, appointed positions and special achievements or recognition.
• 30% State Association Activities: Involvement in committee/task force, elected office assignments, special assignments and events, appointed positions and special achievements or recognition. Attendance and participation at state meetings and conventions.
• 15% National Association Activities: national offices and committee work, membership and work in Institutes, Societies, and Councils including National Honor Society, attendance at National conventions, meetings.
Mom’s involvement on local, state and national levels is abundant. She is owner/broker of Silverhawk Realty, an independent real estate company, which has five offices throughout the state and into Ontario with over 64 agents. She is the 2016 State President for Idaho REALTORS®, 2017 REALTOR® Party Member Involvement Liaison for NAR (National Association of Realtors) President Bill Brown, and FPC (Federal Political Coordinator) for Idaho Congressman Raul Labrador since 2013. She also chairs her local and state RPAC (REALTORS® Political Action Committee) and is a Public Policy Trustee for Idaho. She has served as a NAR RPAC Fundraising Trustee and has raised more than $300,000 for children’s charities in her community. Tracy is a Platinum R President’s Circle Investor, having invested more than $25,000 in her career. She is also an Honorary Commander for the Idaho National Guard.

Tracy’s education includes NAR Leadership Academy Graduate, graduate of REALTOR® Institute. She is Short Sales and Foreclosure Resource Certified and a Certified Residential Specialist and Designated Broker and an Accredited REO AgentTM. She has 24 years of experience with emphasis in new construction and REO properties.

My mom’s success is commendable. Yet, she could not have been successful without the tremendous support from family, friends, mentors, peers and colleagues. She is grateful for their support and their role in helping her succeed.


Christy Cottle – Featured Agent!!

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With all the complexities in today’s market Christy has quickly proven that she can navigate her way through the intricacies of Real Estate deals while consistently putting her clients’ needs first. Christy has teamed up with some of the Valley’s best loan officers, inspectors, and escrow officers to ensure smooth transactions and timely closings. She has a passion for all things Real Estate with an emphasis in new construction, and has made it her practice to stay educated and up to date on the ever changing market both locally and nationally. As a licensed Real Estate Professional she dedicates her time, knowledge and negotiating skills to serving her clients and making sure they are 100% satisfied from beginning to end. She moved with her family from the fast paced lifestyle of the East Coast to Boise in 2007 and immediately fell in love with the mild temperatures, awesome outdoor activities, and peaceful lifestyle that the Treasure Valley provides. Contact Christy – 208-863-6633 to find your dream home or next investment property!

Christy DeVinaspre – Featured Agent!!

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I was born and raised in the Treasure Valley and have spent most of my years growing up in rural Canyon and Owyhee County. Therefore, I can assist you with the knowledge of our beautiful state with familiarity of your desired location. “I believe in the American dream of home ownership and it is very rewarding to be a part of the process to help my clients fulfill that dream. For a positive experience, let me help you with you’re next real estate adventure! Call me today – 208-249-4162!!

Mike Mogensen – Featured Agent!!

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I was raised on a farm near Payette, Idaho where I raised Angus cattle in 4-H and FFA. I graduated from the University of Idaho in 1971 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Animal Science with a Business Minor. I served my country for six years in the Idaho National Guard. I was in Agricultural Sales and Management for 32 years. My work experience includes the beef packing industry, the liquid and dry feed and nutrition industry, seed and animal health retail sales, and Idaho Cattlemen’s Association Executive Vice President and lobbyist. I then worked 20 ½ years from 1984 through 2004 for Merck/Merial as a Pharmaceutical Manufacturer Sales Representative selling Ivomec and other large animal products. During my career, I have worked directly with farmers, ranchers, feedlot owners and managers, dairymen, veterinary clinics, dealers and distributors throughout eight western states.

On a personal note, my beautiful wife and I just celebrated our 44th wedding anniversary this past September. We have two daughters and one son, Angie, Molly & Tyler.  Molly & Tyler are twins.  Tyler served our country in the US Marine Corp.  They are all married and live in the Meridian area.  Each of them have a son and a daughter.  Our six grandchildren are 12 down to six years of age.

My experience in selling agricultural products, programs and services in highly competitive markets, coupled with my strong industry knowledge, have helped prepare me for my career as a Farm and Ranch Real Estate Specialist, beginning in 2005. With this said, I would appreciate the opportunity to assist you with any real estate related business. Call me today – 208-890-7172!!


Kristine Howard – Featured Agent

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I have lived in the Treasure Valley for over twenty years, a transplant from southern Idaho.  As a young person, I was fortunate enough to travel through much of this country, and although I enjoy experiencing new places, I discovered early on that Idaho has a special, unique quality.  I love all that Idaho has to offer, and I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. I enjoy the opportunities I have to help others make and enjoy their home here in Idaho.

Real estate is about more than the exhilarating moment when you first see the home of your dreams or when you have made the decision to sell. Buying and/or selling a home is exciting, but it can also be stressful.  That is why listening to what you want and need is the most important job I have.  You should be able to enjoy your process and leave the stress to me.  Helping you reach your goals, being efficient and handling all the details in a transaction are just some of the things I do to make sure that happens.  I look forward to working with you. Call me today – 208-880-1877!!

Danielle Felty – Featured Agent

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As a premier Real Estate Agent at Silverhawk Realty, I’m here to provide you with all the resources and information you need to buy or sell Real Estate. I work with buyers and sellers throughout the Treasure Valley. I am currently President Elect for Four Rivers Association of Realtors® for 2016. Head of Fundraising Committee and Honored to be a part of raising money for Scholarships as well as other programs that help those in need in my community.  I have also had extensive training in the lastest Real Estate Marketing Strategies, so please contact me. I would love to help you with your Real Estate needs. Call me today – 208-860-1864!!