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Remodeling Impact Report reveals benefits to homeowners
December 10, 2015

The first-ever "Remodeling Impact Report" looks at the resale value and customer satisfaction of 12 interior and 8 exterior projects. The projects range from upgrades (a new HVAC system) to full-scale remodels (a new master suite). Members of NARI reviewed specs and provided cost estimates for each project. REALTORS reported that 3 interior projects and 2 exterior projects - all estimated to cost under $10,000 - provide the greatest cost recovery at resale.

Download the report now

Read the press release with additional infographics

More than half of US renters are 40 and older
December 10, 2015

The majority of U.S. renters are now 40 and older, a fundamental shift over the past decade that reflects the lasting damage of the housing crash and an aging population.

This finding in a report released Wednesday by Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies overturns the assumption that the rental boom is only the result of twenty-somethings flocking to hip urban centers. Single-family houses are a growing share of rentals. And affordability problems are mounting as rents rise faster than wages, while apartment construction increasingly targets tenants with six-figure incomes.

Nearly 51 percent of renters have celebrated their 40th birthday, according to the report's analysis of Census Bureau data. That amounts to 22.4 million households.

A decade ago when the housing bubble peaked in 2005, 47 percent of renters — or 16.4 million households — were older than 40. Their share was 43 percent in 1995. Read More

Kentucky foreclosures down from a year ago
December 9, 2015

Kentucky foreclosures were down 0.1% in October compared to the same period a year prior. Kentucky's foreclosure inventory rate of 1.2% was equal to the national rate, with 3,012 completed foreclosures in the previous 12 months within the state. The serious deliquency rate stood at 3.3% for Kentucky, which came in just shy of the national rate of 3.4%, according to CoreLogic.

"Improved economic conditions and more foreclosure completions have pushed the foreclosure rate lower. The national unemployment rate declined to 5.0% in October, the lowest since December 2007, and the CoreLogic national Home Price Index has risen 37% from its trough." Frank Nothaft, chief economist at CoreLogic.

Realtor.com makes updates to search and SEO
November 21, 2015

There have been several new changes to the platform, many of which deal with the "Find Realtors" search and agent profiles. The biggest takeaway from the recent announcements is to claim your profile, include a photo and start gathering recommendations. Not only will these help on the realtor.com site but will also be great for your SEO.

"Find Realtors" Search - this feature uses a default setting for users to search agents who have uploaded a photo. Unless you have a photo attached to your profile, you will not be displayed with the default search. The feature also uses an algorithm to display search results based on listing and sales activity. If your MLS doesn't report the buy side of the transaction, an agent could possibly be left behind in the search.

Agent Profile - it is important for you to claim your profile ( www.realtor.com/agentprofile) so you can update your information and be found by potential clients. Once your profile is claimed, populate all the relevant information you can to make yours stand out. You can add contact information, bio, social media information, listing data, recommendations and more.

Recommendations and Reviews - these are very different features. Recommendations can be collected immediately from clients, friends and family - anyone who wants to put in a good word about you and your service. These can be loaded into the profile at any time. Reviews, however, are collected only from clients involved with a transaction. You either have to post all reviews or opt-out completely. These are aggregated from a variety of sources and added directly to your profile.

Agent Profile Guide


Watch these brief videos for more information

Kentucky ranked 28th by Forbes for Best States for Business & Careers
November 20, 2015

Kentucky has been ranked 28th in Forbes’ 10th annual Best States for Business & Careers, up five spots from last year. Kentucky was ranked No. 14 in business costs, No. 46 in labor supply, No. 32 in regulatory environment, No. 20 in economic climate, No. 23 in growth prospects and No. 23 in quality of life.

Forbes states, “Kentucky is best known for its horse racing, bourbon distilleries, automobile manufacturing, tobacco and college basketball. Horse racing is a $4 billion industry in the state and the Kentucky Derby Run for the Roses generates more than $400 million annually in economic impact for Kentucky. The state has 474 motor vehicle-related facilities that employ 86,672 workers. Kentucky produces the third most cars of any state in the U.S.” Read More

Kentucky's jobless rate dips to 4.9 percent in October 2015
November 20, 2015

Kentucky’s preliminary October 2015 unemployment rate dipped to 4.9 percent from a seasonally adjusted 5 percent in September 2015, according to the Office of Employment and Training (OET), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. Kentucky’s jobless rate had not been that low since May 2001 when it was 4.9 percent.

The state rate in October 2015 was 0.7 percent below the 5.6 percent rate recorded in October 2014. The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate was 5 percent in October 2015 compared to 5.1 percent in September 2015, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Read More

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac drop mortgage modification interest rate to lowest level ever
November 10, 2015

For the first time since Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac first established a benchmark interest rate for the standard mortgage modification programs in Jan. 2012, the rate is about to be lower than 4%.

Beginning Nov. 13, Fannie Mae will lower its standard modification interest rate from 4% to 3.875%. Freddie Mac lowered its standard modification interest rate by the same margin, with its change taking effect Nov. 5. Read More

NAR releases 2015 Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers
November 5, 2015

The NAR Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers is an annual survey conducted of recent home buyers and sellers that provides insight into detailed information about their experiences with this important transaction. Highlights include information like this:

For the third consecutive year, the share of first-time buyers declined to 32 percent (down one percent from 2014), hitting the second-lowest share since reporting began. First-time buyers had a median age of 31, median income of $69,400 (up from $68,300 in 2014) and purchased a 1,620sf home costing $170,000. Repeat buyers were 53 years old, income of $98,700 (up from $95,000 in 2014) and purchased a 2,020sf home costing $246,400.

Check out the other highlights from the NAR Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers


Kentucky makes big jump in business climate rankings
November 5, 2015

Kentucky has its highest showing ever on Site Selection magazine's 2015 Business Climate Ranking. The state is ranked in third place, up from eighth place last year, according to a news release from Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear's office.

Half of the Business Climate Ranking is based on a survey of corporate site selectors who are asked to rank the states based on their recent experience of locating facilities in them, according to the Site Selection report. The other half is based on an index of seven criteria, including new projects, new facilities and tax burdens. Read More

Kentucky's jobless rate drops to 5 percent in September 2015
October 16, 2015

Kentucky’s preliminary September 2015 unemployment rate fell to 5 percent from a seasonally adjusted 5.2 percent in August 2015, according to the Office of Employment and Training (OET), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. Kentucky’s jobless rate had not been that low in more than 14 years. The state rate in September 2015 was 0.8 percent below the 5.8 percent rate recorded in September 2014.

The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate remained at 5.1 percent from August 2015 to September 2015, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Read More