How Much Is $400k Worth in Huntsville, AL?

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Moving to a new area can be stressful. Finding the right neighborhood and the perfect home is a daunting task, especially when you don’t live in the area. You probably have a specific budget and know what price point you can afford, but many home buyers forget the difference in cost of living (determined by your living area).

Two-hundred thousand dollars ($200,000) can get you a beautiful, spacious house in Huntsville, but in New York City, that would get you a tiny cottage on the outer city-limits. And since a lot of our home buyers come from the east coast, specifically Washington D.C., they don’t realize how much house they can actually get for a better price.

Cost of Living Comparison: Washington D.C. & Huntsville, AL

- Huntsville is 33% cheaper than Washington

- Housing is 64% cheaper in Huntsville

As you can see, living in Huntsville is drastically cheaper than living in Washington. The housing market was even the biggest difference factor in the 2 areas. So when you consider what $400,000 can get you in Washington, think about what it’ll get you in Huntsville. You have an enormous potential to either earn money or buy a much larger home. Either way, you’ll be living more comfortable than you did in Washington.

What $400,000 Can Get You in Huntsville, AL

For the curious, here is a home for sale in Huntsville that fits the average home price in Washington D.C.

16490 Snug Harbor Road, Huntsville, AL 35803

Price: $419,900

This custom 4-bedroom house rests in the Marina Park neighborhood, only minutes away from the Redstone Arsenal & Ditto Landing. The traditional, brick design includes spacious living areas and craftsman-style elements. An open floor plan helps create a more lively home experience and prevents you from feeling closed off from the property. Tons of natural light brightens the house through the multi-paned windows. And the bedrooms feature cozy amenities, ranging from soft carpeting to large closets. Other noteworthy features include a 2-car garage and large yard for children to play in.

Huntsville, AL Real Estate

If you’re interested in seeing what else you can get for $400,000 in Huntsville, search our current home listings by clicking the button below. If you’d like to talk to us about relocating to the area, give us a call at (256) 799-9000 or send us an email via our Contact Page.

April 2013 Market Update

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Huntsville and Madison County is experiencing a healthy real estate market with residential sales up 6 percent through April in a balanced, even market. In April, Huntsville/Madison County there were 412 residential units sold. The 412 units sold in April were 35 more units sold compared to March. However, residential sales slipped nearly 9 percent compared to April 2012.

In April 2013, the Huntsville housing inventory was 3,052 units. This is a 4.0 percent increase from April of last year. There is currently a 7.4 months’ supply of housing, which means, if there were no new listings on the market it would take approximately 7.4 months to run out of units for sale. This is an increase of 13.8% from April 2012. The direction of supply is consistent with historical data trends that indicate April inventory on average increases from March to April an average of 2.5 percent. Until the market gets an early read on the impact of sequester as it relates to housing demand, keeping a close eye on the levels of future supply will remain important for the market.


Residential sales in April increased by 9.3 percent compared to March. Existing single family home sales accounted for 75% of total sales, in comparison to 74% in April 2012. New home sales accounted for 22%, down from 24% in April of last year. Lastly, condo sales comprised 3 percent of total sales, up from 2 percent last April. Historical data shows that April sales increase an average of 2.2 percent, so sales were up more than 4 times in 2013.

The median selling price in Huntsville for April 2013 has decreased 3.9 percent from April 2012 down to $151,860. This figure also represents a decrease of 3.0 percent compared to March 2013. These decreases go against historical trends. From 2008 – 2012, the average April median selling price increase from the month of March by 0.9 percent. This decrease need not cause alarm, but the wide gap is something we will keep an eye on. A broader lens is appropriate when looking at these numbers due to price fluctuations from month-to-month as the sample size of data is subject to seasonal buying patterns. It would not be uncommon for prices to bounce back favorably in May as consumer behavior transitions to reflect home buying season. However, this year is different from years before due to the wild card that is how the market will respond to the sequester.

You can view the current monthly Huntsville Residential Report here. If you have any questions about this market report or if you or someone you know has any buying or selling needs, please call me at (256) 799-9000 or send me an email at

Spring Decorating, Eco-Style

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As spring blossoms, so does our desire to lighten up - in life and at home. Simple eco-friendly changes to home decor can set the tone for a much fresher and brighter outlook.

Here are five tips to get you started:

Get a color lift
Color has long been credited for its mood-changing qualities. "Color can really change the energy in a space," says C. Michael Kleeman, program coordinator of design at The Art Institute of Atlanta. Choose the season's hottest color - orange - or seasonal citrus green, turquoise or sunny yellow, in paint, botanical fabrics and accessories.

A new coat of paint - even on one wall - can immediately set an upbeat mood. Use Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) free paints to protect the environment. "These paints don't emit toxic fumes and are completely odorless," says Kleeman. "They make it possible to paint a bedroom today and sleep in it tonight."

Lighten up the mood
Give your home an eco-friendly dose of spring with updated lighting, new furniture arrangements and removal of heavy draperies and rugs.

Rachel Simmons, a member of the interior design faculty at The Art Institute of Jacksonville, a branch of Miami International University of Art & Design, suggests converting task lighting to compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs), which are now available in dimmable versions. The reduction in energy consumption translates into a lower monthly electric bill and an overall reduction in the carbon footprint.

Try creating a more flexible floor plan with your furniture. Move a piece or two from one room to another. Angle a sofa or reorient the seating to take advantage of a view or a natural breeze through an open window. Shifting pieces can give a room the appearance of more space, making it feel less cluttered.

For instant brightening, remove heavy draperies and roll up the rug. You can place lightweight panels, preferably organic cotton or linen, on the windows, or leave them uncovered if you don't need draperies for privacy. Leave hardwood floors bare or invest in an inexpensive natural fiber seagrass or jute floor cover for the summer.

Delight in de-cluttering
Spring brings the inspiration to cleanse and purge items no longer needed. In addition to sorting through closets and cupboards, give your home an airier look. Replace heavy accents like wood and ceramics with lighter pieces like baskets or glassware filled with flowers or fruit. Kleeman suggests storing a collection of carefully edited accessories to pull from for each season. Reposition artwork and add mirrors on walls, mantels or even bookshelves to open up a room and give the illusion of more space.

Shop and swap
For an eco-friendly seasonal update, Simmons recommends reusing or repurposing items you already have. A simple piece of furniture like a dresser or chair can be painted in a bright color to liven up a room. Or you might swap items that no longer fit your space with a group of friends or look for bargains in thrift stores or consignment shops. If you do need to purchase new items, look for selections using renewable or organic resources like bamboo, organic cotton or recycled glass.

Bring the outside in
Bring the natural goodness of the outdoors in by adding potted flowers and plants or window boxes. Simmons recommends visiting the local farmers market to find your favorite plants or flowers and place them in locations where you spend time daily. Plants not only add oxygen, but also brighten the indoor environment.

The key to smart decorating for hotter weather is not to overpower the existing elements. "Small changes can make a dramatic difference in the personality of a room," says Kleeman.