Helping Buyers Move Blog

October 23, 2012

7 Steps To a StreesFree Home Closing

Filed under: Buying Process — Tags: , , , — helpingbuyersmove @ 1:57 am

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Copyright 2012 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

October 16, 2012

How Much Mortgage Can You Afford?

Filed under: Buying Process — Tags: , , , , — helpingbuyersmove @ 1:55 am

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Copyright 2012 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

October 9, 2012

Keep Your Home Purchase on Track

Filed under: Buying Process — Tags: , , , — helpingbuyersmove @ 1:53 am

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Copyright 2012 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

October 2, 2012

Find the Home Loan that Fits Your Needs

Filed under: Buying Process — Tags: , , , — helpingbuyersmove @ 1:51 am

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Copyright 2012 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

September 28, 2012

Negotiate Your Best Buy

Filed under: Buying Process — Tags: , , , — helpingbuyersmove @ 1:47 am

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Copyright 2012 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

September 25, 2012

Buying a home is cheaper than renting

Filed under: Uncategorized — helpingbuyersmove @ 9:11 pm

Real Estate Marketing Insider issued some observations about the report that buying a home is cheaper than living in a rental property today, and its opinion is that this will help home sellers because this information can be incorporated into marketing strategies for real estate that encourage property sales.

Forbes has published a report from the chief economist for Trulia.com, who claims that currently, owning a home is cheaper than renting. To support this claim, he looks at several different factors. First, he looks at the difference between the recent 2.3% rise in home prices versus the rise in rents, which at 4.7%, has been higher. Next, he combines this information with the fact the mortgage rates are quite low right now, which means that in the 100 largest metropolitan areas in the United States, the average homeowner can save 45% over renting. Of course, this optimistic news is tempered by the current strict standards for obtaining a mortgage and the dearth of properties on the market. These numbers are also an average and in some areas, such as Detroit, buying is 70% less expensive than renting, but in stronger markets like Honolulu, the difference is much smaller, making renting a more viable alternative.

Trulia.com is a website that is designed to work with the MLS system in order to provide detailed information about properties. This information about a single property is supplemented with information about local schools, crime statistics, and information about commute time. This website was launched in 2006, towards the end of the housing bubble, but has managed to thrive even when the housing market collapsed and has struggled since.

Detroit has had a weak and suffering economy for decades and was also hit very hard in the 2008 financial meltdown. Because of this, real estate prices suffered far more in Detroit than they did in other areas. Recently, however, the American auto industry has begun to recover and other companies have built facilities in the Detroit area, which is creating more jobs and help to alleviate properties. Some areas are starting to recover in terms of real estate, but there are many foreclosed properties in the area.

Honolulu is the capital of the state of Hawaii and is the largest city in the Hawaiian Islands. Because it is on an island with real estate at a premium, there are many skyscrapers in Honolulu, including residential high rises. This means that there are many different rental properties available in the area, but private homes are rarer.

Real Estate Marketing Insider today commented on argument that buying a home is much cheaper than renting in today’s economic climate.

Reprint (PRWEB) September 16, 2012

 

Betty Cannon, RealtorBetty Cannon, ABR, CRS, Realtor
334-323-1124 or Toll Free 800-475-2243 ext 124
Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) & Accredited Buyers Representative (ABR)
Helping You Move Team with RE/MAX Properties

December 2, 2011

BUYERS: 5 Steps for Getting Ready

Filed under: Buying Process — helpingbuyersmove @ 7:23 am

Step 1. Find a Local Lender You Can Talk To in Person
Local lenders understand your market and know of loan programs that might be beneficial to you.

Check with your lender on any local programs that might help with closing costs or in other ways. Even though the media have pronounced the 100-percent-financing option dead, this is not always the case. Check it out for yourself and then get preapproved for a loan so you know how much house you’re able to buy.

Step 2. Be Specific in the Area You Want To Live
Educate yourself. Familiarize yourself with the neighborhoods you’re interested in, the taxes and school districts. This not only helps you narrow down your search when you need to move fast, but also helps you figure out potential mortgage payments.

Step 3. Find an Agent Specializing in the Area You Want to Live
This will save you time and effort. Once you’ve identified a real estate agent, trust him or her to do the job. Agents who are thriving in this challenging market have proven their worth. They have the resources and skills to help you find your next home.

Step 4. Don’t Shy Away From Houses That Need Some Work
Just because a house needs some paint or cosmetic fixes doesn’t mean it’s not a good buy. Most real estate agents have an address book full of trusted businesses they work with to help you fix up your new home. There’s an HUD program known as 203(k) that enables you to fold repair money into a primary mortgage; ask a RE/MAX agent in your market about the program.

Step 5. Be Prepared To Act
Sometimes the first home you see is the right one for you. Don’t discount it. Remember, good deals still go fast. Take advantage of the electronic tools your real estate agent has to offer. In many instances, real estate agents have access to better information than what you can find in a standard Internet search.

Betty Cannon, ABR, CRS, RealtorBetty Cannon, Realtor
334-323-1124 or Toll Free 800-475-2243 ext 124
Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) & Accredited Buyers Representative (ABR)
Helping You Move Team with RE/MAX Properties

December 1, 2011

Holiday Lighting Safety Checklist

Filed under: What's Happening in Montgomery — helpingbuyersmove @ 9:56 am

By: Pat Curry  

Before you plug in and light up for the holidays, run your decorations through this quick safety check.

Inspect light strings. Discard any that are damaged. Frayed or cracked electrical cords or broken sockets are leading fire hazards. 

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for connecting multiple strings. The general limit is three strings.  Light strings with stacked plugs can usually accommodate greater lengths than end-to-end connections.

Replace burned-out bulbs promptly. Empty sockets can cause the entire string to overheat. 

Make sure outdoor lighting is UL-rated for exterior use. Exterior lights, unlike those used inside the house, need to be weather-resistant. The same goes for any extension cords used outdoors.

Don’t use outdoor lights indoors. They’re too hot for interior use. For the coolest bulbs and greatest energy efficiency, try LED lights, which come in a wide range of styles and colors.

Don’t attach light strings with nails or staples. They can cut through the wire insulation and create a fire hazard. Only use UL-approved hangers.

Take exterior lights down within 90 days. The longer they stay up, the more likely they are to suffer damage from weather and critters chewing on them. 

Store lights safely. Tangled lights can lead to damaged cords and broken sockets. After the holidays, coil each string loosely around a stiff piece of cardboard, wrap it in paper or fabric to protect the bulbs, and store in a sturdy container until next year.  

Published: November 18, 2009/Pat Curry is a former senior editor at BUILDER, the official magazine of the National Association of Home Builders, and a frequent contributor to real estate and home-building publications.

Betty Cannon, RealtorBetty Cannon, ABR, CRS, Realtor
334-323-1124 or Toll Free 800-475-2243 ext 124
Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) & Accredited Buyers Representative (ABR)
Helping You Move Team with RE/MAX of Montgomery

April 27, 2011

Top issues that derail real estate closings

Filed under: Uncategorized — helpingbuyersmove @ 2:37 pm

What lenders are scrutinizing may surprise you

By Dian Hymer, Monday, April 25, 2011.

Inman News™

It can take weeks for an offer to be ratified. Buyers and sellers often counter back and forth for weeks before reaching mutual agreement on both price and terms. In this case, it’s a good idea to re-evaluate the closing date in the contract before inking the final agreement.

Some buyers make offers that propose closing a certain number of days from acceptance of the contract, often 30 days. Even if you negotiate for a month, you will have 30 days, or whatever number of days agreed to in the contract, to arrange financing, complete inspections and close the transaction.

However, sometimes closing is to occur on a specific date, say June 1. If you start negotiating on May 1 and it takes a couple of weeks to arrive at agreement, you may not be able to close on time if you need a mortgage. It’s best to modify the closing date in writing at the time you go into contract.

One of the main reasons transactions don’t close on time is the mortgage approval process. Even though you may be preapproved by a lender, you will still need to provide additional documentation to satisfy today’s underwriters who scrutinize buyers’ finances zealously.

HOUSE HUNTING TIP: Be aware that you will be asked to document where the funds for the down payment and closing costs came from. It’s not enough to produce a cashier’s check or wire for the amount of cash necessary to close. You must verify the source of the funds in writing for the lender.

One buyer who had more than enough cash to close the sale decided to send money for closing from several different accounts, rather the one account that she said she’d draw on. This required additional documentation at the last minute from each institution that transferred money to close the sale.

Lenders not only scrutinize the buyer’s financial wherewithal before they approve a mortgage, they also examine the preliminary title and appraisal reports for the property. Sellers should have a look at a preliminary title report on their property before they put their home on the market to make sure there aren’t any irregularities. If there are, they can attempt to clear these up before the home goes on the market. Your real estate agent or attorney can help you with this.

Appraisals have not only delayed closings in recent years, they have caused some transactions to fail when the appraisal came in low and the buyers and sellers were unable to negotiate a satisfactory resolution. If the buyers need to switch to a different lender whose appraiser might have a different opinion of the value of the property, this will take time and can delay closing.

It’s also possible that an appraisal could come in so much under the contract price that the seller might not be in a position to close the sale. For example, if the property is listed for $1.5 million and the sellers owe $1.4 million, they could have a problem if the property appraised for $1.4 million or less.

Some buyers don’t want to pay more than the appraised value in this market. In this case, the sellers would have to be willing and able to bring enough cash to closing to cover their closing costs and any amount they might owe the lender. If the sellers were not in a position to do so, the sale becomes a short sale and would require lender approval.

A short sale, as defined by the National Association of Realtors, is “a sales transaction in which the seller’s mortgage lender agrees to accept a payoff of less than the balance due on the loan.”

THE CLOSING: Short sales take time, which might be worth the wait if you are committed to buying the home at the right price.

Dian Hymer, a real estate broker with more than 30 years’ experience, is a nationally syndicated real estate columnist and author of “House Hunting: The Take-Along Workbook for Home Buyers” and “Starting Out, The Betty Cannon, ABR, CRS, RealtorComplete Home Buyer’s Guide.”

Betty Cannon, Realtor
334-323-1124 or Toll Free 800-475-2243 ext 124
Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) & Accredited Buyers Representative (ABR)
Helping You Move Team with RE/MAX of Montgomery

January 25, 2011

America’s lowest-risk housing markets

To see the full article: http://realestate.msn.com/article.aspx?cp-documentid=26646856&GT1=35006

#3 MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA

  • Risk of price decline: 13.1%

Boosters of Alabama’s capital point to Maxwell Air Force Base — hub of the Air Force’s officer training and information-technology development — as a backbone of the economy. But the city owes much of its recent success to the migration of auto plants to the South, with Alabama alone boasting about 250 auto-related manufacturers. The Montgomery plant that South Korea’s Hyundai Motor opened in 2005 has added about 7,000 jobs to the tri-county area, including those at more than two dozen suppliers. The factory has done so well that the city recently won a competition for a Hyundai plant that will make electric transformers.

And it’s not just the number of jobs that counts: Keivan Deravi, an economics professor at Auburn University at Montgomery, says that Hyundai has boosted prevailing wages for skilled factory workers in Montgomery by about 20% since its arrival.

Local real-estate experts say strong employment has kept demand for homes constant, while developers have avoided overbuilding. Deravi says that helps keep the economy “boringly stable.” And that’s good news for homebuyers in a city where housing dollars go a long way.

Stable prices are part of what attracted Paul and Jenni Register to Wynlakes, a neighborhood with a golf course and country club on the east side of Montgomery. With a child on the way, the Registers wanted more space than their 2,400-square-foot villa offered, and they liked the big yards and ample security in the new neighborhood. The couple ended up paying $555,000 for a 3,800-square-foot home, which their real-estate agent says was about 4% below the list price.

Betty Cannon, RealtorBetty Cannon, ABR, CRS, Realtor
334-323-1124 or Toll Free 800-475-2243 ext 124
Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) & Accredited Buyers Representative (ABR)
Helping You Move Team with RE/MAX of Montgomery

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