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home buying: Should we buy a home for our out-of-town student? - 05/17/13 05:00 PM
You actually can profit in two ways from ensuring your student has a safe and comfortable place to live while studying. Many students don't live on campus, but parents still want their kids located in a good area. Purchasing a home and renting to your student (and others, if size permits) may be the perfect solution. The location and the home itself is your choice, so you can assure yourself it's as safe as possible. And by paying rent, your student will learn about personal and financial responsibility. It's also a great investment. As well as covering some or all of (2 comments)
home buying: Is it all in a Name? Ask Residents of Country Club Drive - 05/17/13 04:51 PM
Residents of Wisteria Lane, USA might have found their property values rising during the long run of the Desperate Housewives TV series, but they've got nothing on the people who live on Country Club Drive.According to a University of Georgia study, the value of homes with "country" in their addresses is 4.2 percent greater than similar properties located on streets that aren't "countrified". As for those lucky people on Country Club Drive, this posh address increases the value of their homes by 9.3 percent.As reported in the Wall Street Journal's blog, Developments, the study found that Country Club Drive sounded prestigious (0 comments)
home buying: Bad Neighbors can be Hazardous to Your Property Values - 05/04/13 04:39 AM
It's every homeowner's worst nightmare:Your new neighbor has decided to tear down the charming colonial and build a monster home. Or he's turned his backyard into a junkyard. Or they're having noisy parties.Yes, having bad neighbors can be awful. And did you know they also can lower the value of your home by up to 10 percent.A recent study by the US Appraisal Institute indicates that your neighborhood - and your immediate neighbors - can be game-changers when it's time to sell. You may be looking at a 5-10 percent drop in your home's value. And a lower selling price.And it's (34 comments)
home buying: Which Comes First … the Buy or the Sell? - 04/15/13 04:36 AM
When a hermit crab decides it's time for a new home, it scopes out a new shell before vacating its current accommodation.But for homeowners, the process is not so easy.Whether you buy a new home before selling your current one - or the other way around - the choice of what to do first comes down to which option makes you the most comfortable.Both have pros and cons, and here are some to consider: Sell first When you know what your current home has sold for you can zero in on exactly what you can afford in your next one. Because (0 comments)
home buying: Growing Out of Your Home? You're Not Alone - 03/01/13 07:55 PM
Americans who are house shopping in 2013 are looking for more than granite countertops and hardwood floors. According to recent research, it's all about the family.Most home buyers cite growing families as the main deciding factor in purchasing a new home. According to real estate professionals, almost three-quarters of their clients are motivated to look for a new home when they outgrow the old one thanks to their growing families.The second key motivator relates to the job market; almost 70% of respondents to a recent survey of real estate professionals cite job issues as a reason for buying a new home.As (0 comments)
home buying: How does inventory affect my home search? - 02/17/13 02:14 PM
Buying a home can cause stress no matter what, and it's even more difficult when choice is limited thanks to a low inventory of homes meeting your criteria. The inventory - or number of homes currently on the market - is a measure of demand. A low inventory usually means greater competition and less choice for buyers. Housing inventory is measured as a seasonally adjusted number of homes that are available for purchase at month end. The "months of inventory" figure (sometimes called "months of supply") is based on how long it would take to sell all available properties at the (2 comments)
home buying: Buying With Help: If They Pay, Do They Get a Say? - 02/03/13 04:58 AM
The high cost of education, poor job prospects and rising prices in many housing markets mean more young prospective home buyers are turning to their families for help to buy their first home.Traditionally many parents have opted to contribute toward a down payment, but in recent years, that contribution has become bigger and the practice has grown in popularity.It's becoming so common that house-and-home channels have a whole show - My House, Your Money - focused on buyers who can afford to buy only with their families' help.For the contributors, it's not as simple as writing a check and waiting for (0 comments)
home buying: Why Do Home Buyers Need a Home Inspection? - 01/16/13 05:08 PM
In the current real estate market (or in any market for that matter) it is important that the home buyer knows exactly what he or she is buying. To help this process, a buyer needs a home inspection. Here we discuss the home inspection process and why it is important to you that your buyer gets one. Home inspections, as opposed to appraisals, are almost never required by lenders. The appraisal provides the underwriter with sufficient information on the property to be able to make an informed decision. This information focuses on the overall condition of the property, but will also (3 comments)
home buying: Mars and Venus Weigh In on Home Buying - 12/19/12 06:13 AM
John Gray's "Men are from Mars; women are from Venus" mentality may apply to far more than communication styles, conflict resolution and acts of love. Turns out, there may be differences between the genders when it comes to purchasing a home. Home builder Mark Patterson took a women-centric design course and made big sales based on what he learned. Patterson told BuilderOnline.com that while men look at the big picture, women see the details. Men also are concerned with how the house will provide for relaxation and entertainment, while women are more conscious of how they will live and work in the home. (4 comments)
home buying: Trust Your Agent to Negotiate a Win-Win Deal - 11/18/12 05:15 PM
You're about to make one of the most important purchases of your life - a home for you and your family. But here you are, handing over those all-important home purchase negotiations to your real estate agent. Relax. Your negotiations are in good hands. Strong negotiating skills are among the many reasons you use an agent. He or she has been specially trained in negotiations and has many years of experience putting this training into practice. Here are some of the reasons you should trust your agent to bargain on your behalf: While your agent wants to make the best deal (0 comments)
home buying: Is Yesterday's Starter Home Making a Comeback? - 11/01/12 05:10 PM
Remember the starter home: that first house young couples dreamed of, saved for and finally purchased? It represented their first - but likely not their last - entry into the real estate market. Modest in terms of size, price and furnishings, the starter home was seen as a stepping stone on the way to bigger and better things. A couple could build up some equity, accumulate some "good pieces," and become accustomed to the responsibilities of home ownership in a way that was seen as an "easing in" to the market. Then, as children came along and the family needed more (0 comments)
home buying: How do I know how much I should spend to buy a home? - 05/11/12 09:30 PM
Here are some tips to keep you on track.Know your financial situation: Prepare a budget before you start house hunting. In general, spend no more than 32% of your gross monthly income on housing. Remember, this includes utilities and property taxes. And your entire debt load shouldn't exceed 40% of your monthly gross income. Debt load includes car loans as well as credit card and line-of-credit payments.The lowest interest rate isn't always the best solution. Consider your individual situation, talk to two or three lenders, and be sure to read the fine print. Make sure you plan for closing costs.If you're (1 comments)
home buying: When Does a More Expensive Home Cost Less? - 05/11/12 06:57 PM
While it may seem counterintuitive, it's true; purchasing a more expensive home in an urban neighborhood could actually wind up costing you less than a home with a smaller price tag in the suburbs.In more ways than one...That's largely because of the high cost of transportation. When shopping for a home, many people who choose to live far from the core and commute to city jobs often neglect to factor in transportation costs.The ever-increasing price of gas is not the only consideration. Regular maintenance, higher car insurance rates due to the longer drive, simple wear and tear, and vehicle replacement costs (0 comments)
home buying: What are my options as an empty nester? - 04/26/12 04:54 PM
Your children have left home. You and your spouse are home alone, likely in a big house that may be becoming too much to handle. You want to spend more of your time traveling and the idea of mowing lawns no longer appeals. Your lifestyle is changing but your living situation has not. What can you do? Downsize. Here's how: 1. Condominiums. Secure buildings that can offer of variety of amenities to suit any lifestyle. A monthly fee takes care of the maintenance. 2. Buy a smaller house. You may still want that garden. 3. Adult lifestyle community. Interact with like-minded (2 comments)
home buying: For Today's Homebuyer Small Is Beautiful - 04/18/12 06:30 PM
Is the sprawling luxury home the pinnacle of real estate in the North American market? As baby boomers look to downsize and homeowners trade luxury for function, there is renewed interest in smaller homes. Eighty percent of 1,300-plus real estate agents surveyed in 2011 said that baby- boomer clients aged 54 to 64 are interested in smaller homes. Saving money and living more simply were among the reasons for the interest. A recent study by the U.S. National Association of Home Builders showed that the economic downturn has altered the landscape of housing. The study predicted that by 2015, homes will (0 comments)
With the right information any investor can profit by investing in cheap properties. But remember you are making a long-term investment. Property values tend to increase over the long term, and acquiring tenants to help pay down your mortgage while you wait to sell makes this a valuable investment vehicle for the future. Know your home inspector Home inspectors know the building codes for your area and can offer invaluable advice about the integrity of your property's structure. Not all home inspectors are created equal. Some are qualified to perform WETT certification for wood-burning fireplaces, others have the training and (1 comments)
home buying: Buy in the Right Location to Ensure Your Home's Value - 04/15/12 09:06 AM
True, the phrase, "location, location, location", is a cliché. But smart homebuyers have come to realize that the location of their new home not only determines how happy they'll be with their purchase but also dictates its resale value. Following is a primer to help you find the right home in the right location: Don't be tempted to buy a great house in a bad neighborhood unless you can see signs that the neighborhood is changing for the better. Future buyers will not be willing to pay top dollar for a house surrounded by fixer-uppers. Decide what you want in a (0 comments)
home buying: No Granite? Don't Let That Be a Deal-Breaker - 03/17/12 04:41 AM
If you're looking for the perfect house, that huge wish list you're carrying around may be holding you back - and ultimately could cost you your dream home.Even the casual HGTV watcher will be familiar with "granite obsession." Picture this: A real estate agent is showing a couple a house that has great curb appeal in their chosen neighborhood, at a price they can afford. It's perfect. Or is it?"Hate that fixture," the husband says, as the couple checks out the dining room.They pause in the kitchen."This has to be completely redone," he says. "No granite countertops."She agrees. The husband and (75 comments)
First-time investors with limited income or reservations about real estate investment often start with an income property that can serve as both their residence and a source of income. This is an asset for first-time buyers with limited income as well as an opportunity for new investors to jump into the real estate market. Following are a few tips that first-time investors need to be aware of when buying a home with rental income:Research the Neighborhood: Areas where there is substantial investment being made usually indicates that a neighborhood is on the upswing. The potential for appreciation over time is as (4 comments)
home buying: How to Prepare for the Spring Housing Market - 02/15/12 08:09 PM
Spring is just around the corner. It is the time of year when sellers and buyers gird up for what has traditionally been the most important season for buying or selling a home. The following are some ways to prepare: Sellers Sellers should be aware that there's a lot of competition for buyers in the spring. That means sellers should do everything possible to differentiate their home from others, including the following: Polish windows and floors, rake the yard, mow the lawn, and add flowers in containers. Wash blinds and curtains and have carpeting cleaned. If a seller has spent the (0 comments)
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.