Remote Work Has Changed Our Home Needs. Is It Time for Your Home To Change, Too?

Remote work

Over the past year, many homeowners realized what they need in a home is changing, especially with the rise in remote work. If you’re longing for a dedicated home office or a change in scenery, now may be the time to find the home that addresses your evolving needs.

Working from Home Isn’t a Passing Fad

Before the pandemic, only 21% of individuals worked from home. However, if you’ve recently discovered remote work is your new normal, you’re not alone.

Remote Work Has Changed Our Home Needs. Is It Time for Your Home To Change, Too? | MyKCM

survey of hiring managers conducted by Statista and Upwork projects 37.5% of U.S. workers will work remotely in some capacity over the next 5 years (see chart below):

Working from Home Gives You More Flexibility and More Options

If you fall in that category, working from home may provide you with opportunities you didn’t realize you had. The ongoing rise in remote work means a portion of the workforce no longer needs to be tied to a specific area for their job. Instead, it gives those workers more flexibility when it comes to where they can live.

If you’re one of the nearly 23% of workers who will remain 100% remote, you have the option to move to a lower cost-of-living area or to the location of your dreams. If you search for a home in a more affordable area, you’ll be able to get more house for your money, freeing up more options for your dedicated office space and more breathing room. You could also move to an area you’ve always dreamed of vacationing in – somewhere near the beach, the mountains, or simply an area that features better weather and community amenities. Without your job tying you to a specific location, you’re bound to find your ideal spot.

If you’re one of the almost 15% of individuals who will have a partially remote or hybrid schedule, relocating within your local area to a home that’s further away from your office could be a great choice. Since you won’t be going into work every day, a slightly longer commute from a more suburban or rural area could be a worthy trade-off for a home with more features, space, or comforts. After all, if you’ll still be at home part-time, why not find a home that better suits your needs?

According to the latest Top Ten Issues Affecting Real Estate from The Counselors of Real Estate (CRE), many homebuyers are already taking advantage of their newfound flexibility:

“. . . after years of apparent but variant trends towards urbanization, the pandemic universally caused a movement away from urban cores, particularly for those with higher incomes who could afford to move and for lower-income individuals seeking lower costs of living.”

Bottom Line

If you’ve found what you’re looking for in a home has changed due to remote work, it may be time to make a move. We have simply the best team. Let’s connect today to start prioritizing your home needs.

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Meet Kim Buslach

Meet Kim Buslach! Kim is one of our wonderful agents that is an expert at knowing what the Willamette Valley has to offer. She loves working with people and hearing their stories. This comes from being a travel agent and having expertise in project management. This means, she is good at organizing all the moving pieces, which is a valuable skill when it comes to the buying or selling of a home. Kim genuinely cares about what her clients’ needs and wants are and makes sure they achieve their real estate goals. If you’re thinking about buying or selling real estate, Kim is a great person to call!

Meet Kim Buslach

Kim chose BST Realty LLC for many reasons. One of the biggest ones was that she thought she could truly be who she is. And, because of this, she is thriving and closing deals. If there’s a question she has, she is able to find the answer no problem. Our leadership team at BST Realty LLC is here to support our agents. Because, when they flourish, we all flourish. We are so happy that she chose us, and love the unique set of skills she brings. And, of course, this helps our clients get what they are wanting when it comes to a home.


Flexibility is a key aspect as to why Kim enjoys her work. She’s able to plan and prioritize the days the way she’d like. Outside of real estate, Kim loves to spend time with her 10 grandchildren and travel. With travel, she likes to visit tropical places and has some plans for Europe and Asia. A fun fact is that her dog is famous and starred in the Pup Academy! With all that Kim has to offer, she is a must-call! We are so happy to have her on our team. Contact Kim if you’d like to make your real estate dreams a reality!

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The Truths Young Homebuyers Need To Hear

Young Homebuyers

For many young or first-time homebuyers, purchasing a home can feel intimidating. A recent survey shows some homebuyers ages 25 to 40 may be unsure about the homebuying process and what they can afford. It found:

  • “1 in 4 underestimated their buying potential by $150k or more”
  • “1 in 4 underestimated the increase in value by $100k or more”
  • “47% don’t know what a good interest rate is”

Because they feel uncertain, many young homebuyers have given up on their search, or worse, they’ve decided homebuying isn’t for them and never started on their journey to begin with.

If you’re interested in buying but aren’t sure where to begin, here are three key concepts about homeownership you should understand before you get started.

1. What You Need To Know About Down Payments

Saving for a down payment is sometimes viewed as one of the biggest obstacles for homebuyers, but that doesn’t have to be the case. As Freddie Mac says:

The most damaging down payment myth—since it stops the homebuying process before it can start—is the belief that 20% is necessary.”

According to the most recent Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the median down payment for homes purchased between July 2019 and June 2020 was only 12%. That number is even lower when we control for age – for buyers in the 22 to 30 age range, the median down payment was only 6%.

2. You May Be Able To Afford More Home Than You Think

Working remotely, exercising, and generally spending more time than ever in our homes has changed what many people are looking for in their living space. However, some young homebuyers don’t feel they can afford a home that suits their growing needs and have decided to continue renting instead. That means they’ll miss out on some of the long-term benefits of owning a home. As an article recently published by NAR points out:

“Many young adults are underestimating how much they need for homeownership, the survey finds. Millennials underestimated how much home they can afford right now, how much interest they would pay over a 30-year mortgage, and how much home values appreciate, on average, over 10 years…”

Knowing how much home you can afford when starting the buying process is critical and could be the game-changer that gets you from renting to buying.

3. Homeownership Will Become Less Affordable the Longer You Wait

Finally, with mortgage rates starting to rise along with home prices appreciating, putting off buying a home now could cost you much more later. Sam Khater, Chief Economist at Freddie Mac, notes:

As the economy progresses and inflation remains elevated, we expect that rates will continually rise in the second half of the year.”

Most experts forecast interest rates will rise in the months ahead, and even the smallest increase can influence your buying powerIf you’ve been on the fence about buying a home, there’s no time like the present.

Bottom Line

If you feel overwhelmed by the prospect of starting your home search, you’re not alone. Let’s connect today so we can talk more about the process, what you’ll need to start your search, and what to expect.

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Simply the Best Team

At BST Realty LLC, we are a close-knit crew. We like to have fun together, and we also are there to support one another. That’s one of the many reasons why our agents love being a part of the team. There is mentorship, and a lot of the time friendship, too. From being on a dodge ball team to raise money for a high school event to handing out pies to clients, we love doing things that show our support and appreciation. We believe that the strength of our team is also reflected in the work that we do. In other words, simply the best team, and this shows in how we work with our clients and our community.

Simply the Best Team
We love working together and having fun!

Our Agents – Mentorship and Excellence

When our agents come on board, they are provided with one-on-one mentorship from our leadership team as well as group trainings to maximize success. Because, when one of us thrives, we all thrive. We also offer flexible plans that are available to fit their lifestyle and needs as well as a very supportive community environment. Not only that, but our cloud-based systems enable even more flexibility for our agents to work from just about anywhere. This ability to work from anywhere is highly beneficial to our clients as well. We get that life can get busy, and sometimes things need to get done in the virtual world. At BST Realty LLC, we accommodate our clients to the best of our ability. That means we are glad to meet in-person or virtually to make sure our clients’ real estate goals are achieved.

Our team also supports our community through and through. We love being able to champion one another on. We get what it means to be a local business and to support local organizations. It’s a wonderful thing to be a part of such a wonderful community, and here’s to growing together more and more! If you’re thinking about buying or selling real estate, or if you’re also contemplating property management for your investment, we got you. Just give us a call, and let’s get started!

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A Look at Home Price Appreciation Through 2025

A Look at Home Price Appreciation Through 2025

A Look at Home Price Appreciation Through 2025 | MyKCM

Home prices have increased significantly over the last year, which in turn has grown the net worth of homeowners. Appreciation and home equity are directly linked – as the value of a home increases, so does a homeowner’s equity. And with these recent gains, homeowners are witnessing their financial stability and well-being grow to record levels.

A Look at Home Price Appreciation Through 2025 | MyKCM

In more good news for homeowners, the most recent Home Price Expectations Survey – a survey of a national panel of over one hundred economists, real estate experts, and investment and market strategists – forecasts home prices will continue appreciating over the next five years, adding to the record amount of equity homeowners have already gained over the past year. Below are the expected year-over-year rates of home price appreciation from the report:

What Does This Mean for Homeowners?

A Look at Home Price Appreciation Through 2025 | MyKCM

Home prices are climbing today, and the data in the survey indicates they’ll continue to increase, but at rates that approach a more normal pace. Even still, the amount of household wealth a homeowner stands to earn going forward is substantial. This truly becomes clear when we consider a scenario using a median-priced home purchased in January of 2021 and the projected rate of appreciation on that home over the next five years. As the graph below illustrates, a homeowner could increase their net worth by a significant amount – over $93,000 dollars by 2026.

Home Price Appreciation and Home Equity

CoreLogic recently released their quarterly Homeowner Equity Insights Report, which tracks the year-over-year increases in equity. It shows an average annual gain of $33,400 per borrower over the past 12 months. In the report, Dr. Frank Nothaft, Chief Economist for CoreLogic, further explains:

Double-digit home price growth in the past year has bolstered home equity to a record amount. The national CoreLogic Home Price Index recorded an 11.4% rise in the year through March 2021, leading to a $216,000 increase in the average amount of equity held by homeowners with a mortgage.”

The expected, sustained growth of home prices means homeowners can continue to build on the past year’s record levels of home equity – and their financial prosperity. It also presents today’s homeowners with a unique opportunity: using their growing equity for a home upgrade. With so few homes available to purchase and strong buyer demand, there may not be a better time to sell your current house and move into one that better meets your needs.

Bottom Line

Home prices are expected to continue appreciating over the next five years, and the associated equity gains are the quickest way homeowners can build household wealth. If you’re a current homeowner who’s ready to take advantage of your built-up equity, let’s connect today to discuss your options. Contact one of our agents today and let’s make your home ownership dreams a reality!

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We Appreciate Our Clients

Our clients are one of the big reasons our work is rewarding. We strive to do great work because we want to ensure that our clients receive simply the best service. What does “simply the best,” really mean? It means going above and beyond the requirements of the job. It means if there are bumps in the road, we don’t bail. In fact, we dig our heels in even more to make sure that the road gets back to being smooth. We appreciate our clients wholeheartedly. When you work with us, you are working with a trusted advisor for your real estate goals.

We had so much fun handing out delicious pies to our wonderful clients!

That’s why client appreciation isn’t just one day a year, but every day. However, we love the excuse to celebrate and bring community together. Especially, if that means bringing out some delicious pies from the Willamette Valley Pie Company to show our appreciation. Real estate is a big deal, and we know it. When we go through the real estate process with our clients, it brings us closer together. It may be because they’re first-time home Buyers, and this marks the first time that they will get to own a home. It may also be experienced Sellers who are attached to all the work they’ve put into a home and want to make sure they get the value they put into it.

We meet wherever our Buyers or Sellers are in their real estate journey. We listen and advocate for them because that’s our job and we take it seriously. So, thank you to all of our clients out there. We appreciate you coming back again and again, because you know that you’re in good hands. When you thrive, we do too. If you’re new to real estate, just look at the proof. We’re the Best Real Estate Company in the Willamette Valley. And, if you’re still curious, give us a call, and let’s talk about it. Let’s start this journey together.

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BST Family

The BST family is growing in more ways than one! We’d like to congratulate Brokers Freddy Ruiz Jr. and Chelsea McKinney. They both welcomed little bundles of joy last week! We are excited for both of their families and their new journey with a little life being brought into the world. At BST Realty LLC, we love our community, and there have also been some new additions throughout the year that we would like to share with you!

Aren’t they precious? We can’t wait to see how they grow and change!

Jenna Robles, Managing Principal Broker, welcomed a new baby boy in April. Brittney Black, Managing Principal Broker, also welcomed a baby girl last fall. And, Sophia Kusnetsov, Broker, also welcomed a baby in 2020. My, now that’s a lot of babies, and we haven’t even counted the adorable grandbabies either! BST Realty LLC is growing in so many ways, and we are excited about what the future holds. We value family a lot, and we think of family as something you can be born into, but also family can be who you choose to be in your life. There are so many beautifully different ways to have a family, and love is the common thread that connects us to one another.

We value our community, and we are here to support one another and to cheer each other on. If you’re looking to start a career in real estate, please don’t hesitate to connect with us. One of the many great things we offer is mentorship. And, some agents become friends along the way, too. In about the last two years, our sales have more than doubled. We thrive because our community thrives. If you’re a Buyer or a Seller seeking valuable guidance on your next big steps in real estate, we are also here to serve you. We are here to help you figure out what is best for you and your real estate dreams. Give us a call, and let’s get started on this journey together!

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Meet Chelsea McKinney

Meet Chelsea McKinney! Chelsea is one of our wonderful agents who loves helping people find the perfect home. She has a Military Relocation Professional (MRP) certification. This means she has the expertise to help military families find a home, even if they are out-of-state. It also comes in handy for anyone who is thinking of making the move to Oregon, but can’t be there to view properties in person. If you’re looking for a broker who will guide you at every point in the journey, even if that means virtually, Chelsea is the person to call!

Meet Chelsea McKinney

Relocation Expertise

Chelsea was born and raised in the Willamette Valley. Therefore she understands the area in-depth as well. She can also relate to families who are moving to new places because she moved to the east coast for a bit because her husband’s military duty called for it. She provides her clients a means to experience the property if they can’t be there to view it. For example, Chelsea may go view the property, take videos, and more in order for clients to make the most informed decision. Chelsea has a huge heart for the military and veterans. And, she understands how to connect her clients to the right resources to make sure VA benefits are utilized to the utmost. At BST Realty LLC, we are a proud affiliate of the Homes for Heroes program. This helps people like veterans potentially save money on the purchase or sale of a home.

Chelsea spending time with family outdoors!

Spending time with family and doing woodworking with patriotic themes are some of the things she enjoys when she’s not doing real estate. She loves going out kayaking, too, and enjoying all that the Willamette Valley has to offer. Chelsea is an expert of the area and a relocation specialist who is there to help you at every point in the real estate process. When it comes to Sellers, her relocation expertise also has a benefit. She is knowledgeable about how to make sure her Sellers’ home has the most exposure to ensure the best offers are coming to the table. When it comes to buying and selling real estate, Chelsea is a great broker that will help guide you at every point in your journey. Give Chelsea a call, and get started!

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We are Simply the Best, Baby!

We are simply the best for many reasons, but one of them is most definitely our wonderful agents. Our agents are well-versed in how to help their clients reach their real estate goals. Each one of our agents gives a unique point of view and skill set as well. In real estate, agents are known to take their work “home” with them. That means, they are working hard for their clients to make sure nothing falls through the cracks. It also means that family is sometimes integrated into what they are doing, too. In a way, we think of our BST Realty LLC team as family. And, we are simply the best, baby! We are there for each other, and we help cheer one another on when there is a success. When one shines, we all shine!

Simply the Best, Baby!
Erica Rumpca, broker, with her little helper!

Our Awesome Agents

Our agents care about their clients and are fierce negotiators. In a hot market like we are in right now, it’s good to have an agent who knows how to guide you on how to best present your offer as well as connect you with valuable resources to make the most informed decisions. If you’re a Buyer and a bit nervous about making the leap into homeownership, we have agents that can teach you about the real estate process and help you at each step in the journey. If you’re a Seller who has owned a few homes, we also have agents who understand how best to showcase your home to reach the goal you’re wanting to achieve.

Are you an investor? We also have agents experienced in selling rental homes as well as commercial real estate. Not only that, but we also provide property management services. At BST Realty LLC, we’ve got you covered. We are simply the best in real estate. In fact, we just won an award for Gold Best Real Estate Company for Best in the Willamette Valley. Let’s get started on this journey together and make your home dreams a reality!

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5 Things Homebuyers Need To Know When Making an Offer

5 Things Homebuyers Need To Know When Making an Offer | MyKCM

When it comes to buying a house, you’re looking for the perfect place to call home. The problem is, in today’s market there just aren’t that many homes available to purchase. With inventory hovering near record lows and sky-high buyer demand, a multi-offer scenario is the new normal. Here are five things to keep in mind when you’re ready to make an offer.

1. Know Your Numbers

Having a complete understanding of your budget and how much house you can afford is essential. That’s why you should connect with a lender to get pre-approved for a loan early in the homebuying process. Taking this step shows sellers you’re a serious, qualified buyer and can give you a competitive edge in a bidding war.

2. Brace for a Fast Pace

Today’s market is dynamic and fast-paced. According to the Realtors Confidence Index from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the average home is on the market for just 17 days – that means from start to finish, a house for sale in today’s climate is active for roughly 2.5 weeks. A skilled agent will do everything they can to help you stay on top of every possible opportunity. And, as soon as you find the right home for your needs, that agent will help you draft and submit your best offer as quickly as possible.

3. Lean on a Real Estate Professional

While homebuying may seem like a whirlwind process to you, local real estate agents do this every day, and we know what works. That expertise can be used to give you a significant leg up on your competition. An agent can help you consider what levers you can pull that might be enticing to a seller, like:

  • Offering flexible rent-back options to give the seller more time to move out
  • Your ability to do a quick close or make an offer that’s not contingent on the sale of your current home

It may seem simple, but catering to what a seller may need can help your offer stand out.

4. Make a Strong, but Fair Offer

Let’s face it – we all love a good deal. In the past, offering at or near the asking price was enough to make your offer appealing to sellers. In today’s market, that’s often not the case. According to Lawrence YunChief Economist at NAR:

“For every listing there are 5.1 offers. Half of the homes are being sold above list price.”

In such a competitive market, emotions and prices can run high. Use an agent as your trusted advisor to make a strong, but fair offer based on market value, recent sales, and demand.

5. Be a Flexible Negotiator

If you followed tip #3, you drafted the offer with the seller’s needs in mind. That said, the seller may still counter with their own changes. Be prepared to amend your offer to include flexible move-in dates, a higher price, or minimal contingencies (conditions you set that the seller must meet for the purchase to be finalized). Just remember, there are certain contingencies you don’t want to forego. Freddie Macexplains:

Resist the temptation to waive the inspection contingency, especially in a hot market or if the home is being sold ‘as-is’, which means the seller won’t pay for repairs. Without an inspection contingency, you could be stuck with a contract on a house you can’t afford to fix.”

Bottom Line

When it’s time to make an offer, it’s important to consider not just what you need, but what the seller may need too. Let’s connect so you have expert advice on this step in the homebuying process to put your best offer on the table.

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