Shiawassee County has Builder Potential

As we look into the future and continue to establish new construction relationships, our team is working hard to identify target markets that we will focus on in 2016. Shiawassee County has proven in 2015 to have expansion potential. We are excited to be the front runners in this area representing CVE Homes as the custom builder of choice. In 2015 we have taken 10 new construction contracts in Shiawassee County and see great promise with the coming year. Many of our current clients didn't realize that building was an obtainable option. Not only is it obtainable but it is possible to build for budgets within $150,000-$400,000. Some of the benefits of building new is there are no kitchens to update, no furnace to replace or roof to repair. Building is a great option that reaps long term financial rewards. If you are tired of looking at homes that disappoint you after the showing consider these things:


1.) CVE Homes will build in a subdivision or on private land


3.) CVE offers a truly custom approach to the build process 

4.) High quality standards that exceed Michigan standards

5.) The Howansky Team represents our clients throughout the build process to mediate with build staff on your behalf 

6.) 10 year structural warranty 

7.) Construction Time is 5-7 months from contract to close

If you have thought about building but haven't taken the plunge yet give us a call we would love to discuss our locations, floorplan options and building steps with you.


How Location Affects Real Estate Decisions                                ........8/30/15

Many clients ask me "What are good areas of town to purchase a home?" This is a personal choice depending on each individual buyers needs. As a Realtor, I cannot steer my clients to any specific area of town but there is a community out there for everyone. Whether you are looking for a quick commute to work, an over sized lot in the country or a chic downtown loft- the perfect place is out there! Here's some of the questions I ask my clients when they pare down locations:

1) Why are you wanting to move?

2) How will this move improve your current situation?

3) What type of community are you searching for?

4) Have you researched areas online that meet all your criteria?

Once you can determine the answers to these questions, we can work on targeted communities that meet your needs. The best way to determine a location that fits your needs- is to get out there and discover what each community has to offer. Visit farmers markets, local shops & boutiques and walk/drive through town at different times of the day. Once we determine a location the rest of the search will fall into place.                                                                                                                                      ..................Shannon

​Economic Upturn Sparks Real Estate Industry                              ........7/25/15

​Talk to any successful Realtor anywhere across this country and you will find out that even though the public still believes the real estate industry is dead, Realtors are working day and night to meet the demand. Some question how could this be possible? I believe their are 4 contributing factors that have positively sparked our industry.

1.)Many buyers rent cost had increased significantly over the past 10 years due to a rise in the need for modern families to rent instead of purchasing. Some of the factors that effected a rise in rental costs were: foreclosures, short sales, job loss and financial instability. More often than not even Millenials were too cautious 5 years ago to step into home ownership. This fed to escalate monthly rental costs.


2.) High paying jobs are flourishing once again; with the economy stabilizing we are experiencing growth in multiple industries and businesses are expanding.

3.) Interest Rates are still low. Its more times than not cheaper to borrow money than it is to waste money on rent.  

4.) Home sales are increasing causing a high sense of urgency to secure a home before pricing exceeds the buyers budget. Over the last year we have seen equity go up as much as 3-5%, as the market continues to improve builders costs are increasing from suppliers based on demand and those increases are being passed on to the buyers.

The economy continues to improve, buyers are becoming more confident, investing in their communities, their futures and spending more on housing. According to NAR the average median home sale in June 2015 was $236,400. This is up significantly from where we were a year ago. What we are seeing in Mid Michigan is that trust has returned to our real estate market. Not only are potential buyers spending more but they are building homes with more upgrades. Gone are the days of purchasers spending well below their buying power. I am not saying every buyer is pushing their pre-approved limit but there is less pause in their decision making style and more spending being documented. 2015 is proving to be a very insightful year.


Multiple Offers Are Now the Standard                                           .......7/10/15

It is becoming an industry standard when purchasing a pre-existing home that our Greater Lansing Market has quickly turned into a SELLER'S Market. Many buyers are experiencing multiple offer status along with buyers willing to go over list to secure a property. This change has perked interest on both sides of the closing table. What has changed? Why are their so many buyers? And is this market trend stabilized or just a summer fad? There are two common factors that has escalated this situation. 

1.) Low Inventory- Not only is inventory low but homes in highly desirable areas in excellent condition just do not exist, but when they do rest assured we WILL have multiple offers within 48 hours. 

2.) Buyers Surplus- As the economy continues to improve potential buyers seriously consider whether NOW is the right time to buy. Rates are still historically low meaning you can purchase for LESS than you can rent. 

Over the last 18 months we have seen the market continue on this upturn. To Buyers who feel left out on a couple of homes that went pending before they were able to even see the home... Here's some helpful advice: Be prepared to look at new listings within 24 hours, Be prepared to write your highest and best offer the FIRST time and Be prepared if you want the house... we are sure someone else does too. To all my Sellers who feel like now is NOT the time to list your house let me begin to tell you the need for quality staged homes that are listed at market value in desired areas of Greater Lansing. If you are thinking about selling your home and live in Mason, Holt, Williamston, East Lansing, Groesbeck, Haslett, Okemos, Dewitt, Bath Township GIVE US A CALL TODAY! We have buyers searching in these areas!

​                                                                                                                                      .........Shannon

Is Building The Right Option                                                         .......3/8/15

Building vs. Buying a pre-existing home is one of the biggest decisions many buyers face. There are pros and cons to each decision. Many buyers start by looking at pre-existing homes with the hope of finding the perfect place and are disappointed by the lack of quality listing inventory. This is not to say good properties do come on the market. As quickly as good properties come on the market, bidding wars are becoming a standard in Mid Michigan. The frustration mounts leaving most buyers ready to look at other options. Building is a great option for buyers who want to design their own home. The common misconception is that building is more expensive than buying a pre-existing home. In this market that is simply not true. When we add in remodeling costs many times its cheaper to build than to buy pre-existing. All builders are different but there are some common questions you must ask..

-Know the Quality Standards

-Production vs Custom Builds

-What's really Included

-Neighborhood Options

-Return On Investment Potential

One last thing, don't forget to bring your Realtor. Builders will work with us and it is in your best interest to have someone negotiating for your best interest.                                      

                                                                                                                        ..............Shannon Howansky

What Role Does Technology Play in Our Real Estate Market         .......2/11/15

Online presence is a necessary part of every successful Real Estate team. In todays market the field of innovative Realtors that are technology savvy is thin. What sets us apart is our knowledge of the new age buyer- the first showing that sellers receive in online. Some say how is this possible? Everything CAN be found on the internet including listing information, interior pictures, tax info, what you purchased your home for... And the list goes on and on. So how do you set your listing apart from all the other listings? Hire the right Real Estate Team. Online market presence includes:

  1. Edited Crisp Listing Photos- Not those blurry IPhone pictures you see for 80% of listings posted on, Trulia and MLS. 
  2. Virtual Tour- Customized to accent YOUR home's unique upgrades and features. What better way than a YouTube video to reach the millenial buyers?
  3. Captivating Listing Description- Words do matter, lets make sure we use them wisely

Experience Matters. Trust the Experts.                                                  -The Howansky Team

Selling Your Home During the Holidays                                      ......11/13/14

The holidays may not sound like a good time to sell your home but wait... Inventory is LOW, Serious Buyers still exist and now is the RIGHT time to think about selling. Serious buyers are out there and more times than not they need to find a home fast. Buyers purchase homes all year long, and when inventory is low- the situation comes down to supply and demand. During the holidays, sellers may be presented with less showings but more qualified buyers. By capturing motivated buyers my sellers have a better chance of securing an offer. If you are looking to sell your home during the holiday here's a couple tips to help boost your showings...

  • Make the Most of Your First 14 days on the Market
  • Be sure to be Priced Right to Cultivate Showings
  • Partner with Your Realtor to Effectively Use Social Media to Market Your Home
  • Its OK to Put Up Holiday Decor but Keep It Simple

​                                                                                     -Shannon Howansky, Realtor 

Choosing to Purchase the RIGHT Home                                         ......9/26/14

Choosing to purchase a home is such a big decision, even more so is the decision where to live, what wish list items are a MUST and does it really all fit in the budget. As a Realtor, it is my job to uncover what is most important to my clients even when they don't know where to start. Every buyers needs are different but the RIGHT home is out there. So where do you start? Budget and location determine where we start. I am a skilled agent but I am unable to work miracles. Being realistic as a buyer is one of my key requirements when taking on new buyer clients. Here are couple questions all buyers SHOULD ask themselves?

  • ​Is my Budget realistic in the area I am looking to purchase a new home?
  • What are my top 5 wishlist items needed in a new home?
  • ​Where am I able to compromise?
  • Do I have a clear understanding of my market standards and what it takes to purchase a home in my area?
  • Have I identified a trusted Realtor that listens to my needs, and can partner with my family to achieve our home buying goals?

​If you hesitate while reading any of these questions, it is important to talk these questions through with your Realtor. The secret to a smooth home buying experience is caught up in the buyers ability to plan, prepare and communicate to their Realtor what their perfect home looks like. Just remember there is no perfect purchase but if a home checks off 8 out of 10 of your wishlist items.. PLEASE PURCHASE IT BEFORE SOMEONE ELSE DOES.

                                                                                         -Shannon Howansky, Realtor

Staging Your Home For Success                                                   .......9/8/14

One of the top questions I get from potential sellers is- What are buyers today looking for? This is one of the easiest questions I have to answer. They are looking for well maintained homes with an updated style, priced right, and marketed properly. The first showings we receive on the sell side is online; technology is the new gateway to the home buying experience. If we do not focus first on a high level of marketing tools as Realtors and sellers....we have missed the boat. It is imperative that homes for sale in today's market are de-cluttered, furniture is minimal, and color schemes are up to date. Homes that meet these specific buyer needs historically receive more online views, showings, and sell faster. So what do I recommend? Below is my 'Prep Your Home for Sale' List....

  • Powerwash Exterior, Trim Bushes, Spruce Up Flower Beds
  • Plant Seasonal Flowers, if Selling in the Winter Buy a High-line Wreath and Repaint Door
  • De-clutter Foyer and Clean Out Coat Closet or Cubbies
  • Less is MORE. Living Rooms with No Clutter, Very Little Furniture, and Free of Nick Nacks
  • Kitchen Counters Must be Clean of ANY Coffee Machines, Knife Sets, Toasters, Etc.
  • Bathrooms Should Have Minimal Decor, Fresh Towels and be Super Clean
  • Bedrooms are to Sleep In, Remove kids toys, Bold Colors and PLEASE Clean Out the Closets
  • Neutral Colors should Be Present throughout Your Home
  • A Clean Home is a SOLD Home


Be really honest with yourself and Hire a Realtor that has a proven track record of selling homes in your market, but still works with buyers. 'List Only Agents' become too removed from the day to day needs of buyers. Hire the Right Agent the First Time.

Remember... RESULTS MATTER.  

--Shannon Howansky, Realtor

​                                                                                                    Results That Move You

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