I appreciate all my clients and colleagues who made 2009 a fantastic year. This has been a trying year for the appraisal industry in light of HVCC and the extra work that is now required on home appraisals which has added almost 2 hours to each appraisal order. However, I am very grateful nonetheless for all the good things that happened this year. Merry Christmas AND Thank you for your support in 2009!
1.) St. Jude Dream Home: I’ve been fortunate to have appraised the St. Jude Dream Home every year since 2000. The folks at St. Jude Children’s Hospital, their local Baton Rouge operations, have really blown me away in terms of how much they really care about their cause – helping Children. Over the years, I’ve also discovered how BIG a heart a local builder, developer and real estate broker has, that being Carlos Alvarez and Family! The 2009 Dream Home was a splendid success, helping raise money for St. Jude and bringing the Greater Baton Rouge Community together for community involvement. Be sure to follow Baton Rouge St. Jude Dream Home on Twitter for the 2010 Dream Home Event by clicking on the home photo. Here’s a video I made of the Dream Home.
2.) Vicknair Builders Buying Up Previously Expensive Lots in Former High-End Subdivisions and Lowering Overall Sold Price Per Sq. Ft.: This year while appraising a home in Acadiana of Ascension Subdivision, a once former high-end development in the mid $350K range located in Northern Ascension Parish, I made a discovery. The discovery was that since the $73,000 to $83,900 lots weren’t selling, and that since some of new high-end spec homes weren’t selling, that a large bulk package of these lots sold to Vicknair Builders and/or partners in a deal for $36,000 each and $53,900 each for lake lots. The once $136/sf sold prices will be joined by anticipated sales prices in the $96/sf to $109/sf range. It’s estimated that approx. 88% of this development will be finished out with Vicknair homes. If 88% of the homes in a development sell for less than the previous high-end homes did, then the overall prices in that development will be probably be lowered. This is also taking place in Denham Springs’ Juban Parc, where Vicknair Builders purchased a bulk large lot package and anticipated sold prices per sq. ft. will be significantly lower than the $128/sf buyers paid up to the time of the bulk lot purchase.
3.) Copper Mill Golf Community, Zachary LA: Zachary LA is a beautiful place to live and visit. In 2006-2007, Woody Jenkins wrote an article about the “10 Reasons Why Zachary Louisiana Is A Great Place To Live!”….and I agree. In 2009, I had the pleasure of appraising several homes in upscale Copper Mill Golf Community and shooting the listing video for the home on Royal Troon below. The home photo to the right is of a high quality home that looked a little like a “castle”. I appraised one home on Royal Troon that was half built in 2006-2007, abandoned, bought by an individual from the bank who finished the home. I think it’s the different architectural styles that set the homes in Copper Mill apart from some of other upscale developments within Greater Baton Rouge.
4.) An Excess Of Vacant Subdivision Lots in Greater Baton Rouge In General: In my home appraisals in general throughout the Greater Baton Rouge market, I have to estimate the value of the lot or site of the home. As I drive around, one memorable aspect about 2009 is the oversupply of vacant, very expensive residential lots on the market. That’s why they’re just sitting there vacant because they’re priced too high. In the photo, you see the Newly Developed 72 Lot Isabella Lakes Subdivision Remains Vacant Possibly Due To Very High Pricing Of Lots Within What’s Supposed To Be The “More Affordable” Walker Louisiana Housing Market From $37,400 up to $56,400. Understandably, The 72 Lot Listings Expired Unsold. The $37,400 Lots Are Tiny 50×135 In Size For Starter Homes In The Minimum 1,400sf range up to 1,600sf range. The estimated home prices would be in the $140K to $170K range. To put this into proper perspective, the lots in Collins Place sold from $40K up to $49,900 where the predominant values were in the mid $250K range. This Again Appears To Be An Example Of How The Market Is Shunning Overpriced Lots and Overpriced New Homes In This Move To The Desire Of Afordability. This is Why “Vicknair Builder Homes” are selling so well in this market. This appraiser won’t be at all surprised to see Vicknair Builders buy Isabella Lakes Subdivision and build more affordable homes for this affordable homes market.
5.) A Slow Continued Letting Out The Air Of The High-End Home’s Balloon, A Continued Oversupply, Builders Saying “This Market Is Killing Us” and Buyer Moves To More Affordable Homes: I recently reported on the high-end home values decline and oversupply in N Ascension Parish based on a recent appraisal. In my post, I noted a -6% decline in median sales price, 66 competing listings and a 43 month supply on the market. A similar situation is verifiable for the Zachary Copper Mill market where the 2008 versus 2009 median sales price has declined almost 5%. A couple of sales in Copper Mill in 2009 took over 700 days to sell.
Continued at: This same article can be viewed with color photos and 3 videos at batonrougerealestateappraisal dot com, posted on 12/13/2009
6.) Dilapidated Fourplex In Gardere Lane Area And Discovery Of Fraud Involved In That Market: This property, and several others like it I appraised in 2009, was interesting because of the gross extent of what appeared to be “black mold” growing inside. In some cases, the ceilings were falling in, Again in 2009. However, some of these 4 Plexes were just appraised very, very high in 2006 and 2007 based on private sales, not based on the many MLS sales which indicated a much lower value. The conditions noted in the appraisals was “Average” when in reality, the conditions were much less than average. Some California Investors, lured in because of the relatively low cost and higher ROI than int he California market, purchased these investment properties only to have them go into foreclosure in 2009.
7.) Fraudulent Fourplex Into Condo Coversion Gone Awry: Somewhere in the Greater Baton Rouge market, there was a condo-conversion of a “single 4 plex” on a street and in an area where there were primarily just 4 plexes. Continued at: This same article can be viewed with color photos and 3 videos at batonrougerealestateappraisal dot com, posted on 12/13/2009
8.) Upscale Camp Goes Into Foreclosure:
9.) Divorce Appraisals: I perform some appraisal work for home owners and their attorneys during a difficult time of life. I was thankful to provide excellent service for home owners in need this year and at least make the appraisal process smooth in the midst of challenging situations.
10.) Pre-Listing Appraisals for Individuals and Local Real Estate Agents:
I am very thankful for both local Real Estate Agents and local Individuals that hired me to provide them with “Pre-Purchase”
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