buying a home in cedar rapids: How Fast Are Homes Selling in Cedar Rapids? - 04/13/19 01:49 PM
Let's put it this doesn't matter whether the home is listed at $90,000 or $400,000, if your home is clean, updated and priced right, it is gone within a week or less.  Sometimes selling in the first hours on the market to the first buyer that scheduled a showing with their agent.
I listed a home a couple of months ago in the $235,000 range.  It received 7 showings in the first 24 hours and over 30 people came through the open house.  We received 6 offers, all over the asking price.  So how did the seller choose?  Ultimately, it was … (4 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: Is it Better to Have Loved and Lost? Maybe not in Real Estate... - 01/29/19 06:56 PM
Is it better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all?  Maybe in some cases, but not in real estate.  The one that got away can be a determining factor as to whether a buyer continues to work with an agent.  I received this question over the weekend.
Karen, we had written an offer on a home that we loved with a previous agent and we were competing for the house.  We didn't win.  Our agent wasn't the same after that.  It became more difficult to get her to show us houses that came on the market because … (0 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: Buyer Tip: What are Closing Costs and Prepaid Expenses? - 01/07/19 06:13 PM
What are closing costs?  When you select a bank or credit union for your financing, they will go over a good faith estimate of costs that you can expect at the closing.  Closing costs can be paid by you or you may ask for the seller to credit you for a portion of these costs.  When you write an offer for a home, your REALTOR can request that the seller contribute X amount for buyer's closing costs and/or prepaid expenses.  What is the difference between closing costs and prepaid expenses?  Let's take a look at each of them.
Closing Costs--These are the … (1 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: The Insurance Company Will Rat You Out! - 09/07/18 09:20 AM

As a followup to my post earlier this week regarding property disclosures, I got to thinking about the handful of transactions that turned south once the buyer realized that the seller had been less than forthcoming about the condition of the property.
In this case, it had severe consequences for the buyers in the first week of their ownership.
The buyers had a thorough inspection and the seller had disclosed that they had a few inches of water in the basement a few years prior to the sale.  They had filed an insurance claim and because the basement was unfinished, there was what … (15 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: Buyers: There was a Line to see the House! - 04/10/18 09:32 AM
I feel compelled to share a recent experience that I had as a buyer's agent in Cedar Rapids this past weekend.  This is the third instance of this practice that I have seen so far this spring in this price point.
The buyer that contacted me on Zillow was asking about a property that morning.  The problem was that they were out of town for the weekend and wondered if they might be able to see it this week.  After looking at the property on the MLS, reading the agent remarks that no showings would be allowed until the open house and … (2 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: When a Buyer Comes-a-Knockin', Tell Your Seller What to Do! - 08/29/16 05:30 AM
When a Buyer Comes-a-Knockin', Tell Your Seller What to Do!
And I don't mean it in a bossy way...but if the sign goes in the yard and a buyer knocks on the door, does your seller know what to do?
My very first listing was a home that I sold for my aunt and uncle.  It was the only listing I had that entire first year, mostly because I didn't seek out sellers.  I LOVED buyers and thought that buyers were the easiest....
The sign went in the yard and that night, a buyer knocked on the door and wanted to see the house. … (4 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: But I Didn't Bring the Checkbook! - 08/25/16 04:18 AM
But I Didn't Bring the Checkbook!
It happens.  I counsel my buyers to go to a lender, have their pre-approval letter ready, and bring the checkbook when they view homes.  Why?  Because if you find one that you like and you want to submit an offer, I need to have the earnest money check in my possession.  Now, understand that the check stays with me until there is an accepted offer.  And I will let a buyer know when I provide the check to the listing agent so that if they need to move money around in their account, they are aware.
There … (7 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: Why Won't the Agent Just Meet Me at the House? - 10/19/15 05:27 AM
Why Won't the Agent Just Meet Me at the House I Want to See?
I think that as a profession, we can tend to not explain the "whys" of our business practices. So I would like to talk about why I cannot just show you the property that you are sitting in front of right this minute.
I received a Zillow call over the weekend and this person was sitting in front of the house and was demanding to see it right now, like yesterday.  Very impatient and demanding does not go over to well, in case you are taking notes.  We really … (54 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: Buyer FAQ #1: Pre-Qualification vs. Pre-Approval - 10/07/15 12:08 AM
Buyer FAQ #1: Pre-Qualification vs. Pre-Approval 
In the market today, many things have changed when purchasing a home.  Especially since 2008.  There are much tighter requirements for lenders, appraisers, and underwriters when determining who is eligible for the best rates and loan products.  
This will be step one in a Buyer Series in Purchasing a Home in Today's Market in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.  You need to begin somewhere.  With the development of TRID, which went into effect on Saturday October 3rd, it is more important than ever to research your lender and their company and ask lots of questions.
As agents, we need … (3 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: Buyer Question: How Important is the School District? - 02/01/15 04:31 AM
Buyer Question: How Important is the School District?
Surprisingly, this question seems to come to me from buyers that don't even have children.  They are purchasing their first home and they are already thinking about selling it one day in the future.  
We are fortunate in the Cedar Rapids area to have fantastic public school systems.  But there are school districts right now that have higher prices on the homes and taxes on those homes as well.
So if you are a buyer that does not have a child to take advantage of the school district, how … (5 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: Seller Tip #5: Are Closing and Possession Always on the Same Day? - 05/19/14 04:19 AM
Seller Tip #5: Are Closing and Possession Always on the Same Day?
It is the age old question that home buyers and sellers deal with every day.  Do you sell your home first or do you buy a new one first?
Most homeowners are not fortunate enough to be in the position to choose.  Most buyers need to sell and receive the proceeds from their current home in order to purchase the new one.  It is easiest and less stressful for a seller to know that their home is sold before offering on a new home.  That way, they can line … (1 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: What Does a Quit Claim Deed Really Do? - 02/18/14 06:03 AM
What Does a Quit Claim Deed Really Do?
In Iowa, a quit claim deed is usually part of a dissolution of marriage for the primary residence.  Usually, a refinance of the property is necessary in exchange for the other spouse to release their claim on the property.   
However, what if you weren't married but you were on the mortgage?  If you qualified together to purchase the property, will one person be able to afford to refinance on their own?  The answer may be, not always.

When you sign the quit claim deed and there is not a recorded  document … (8 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: A Lender Cheat Sheet for Home Buyers - 02/07/14 03:02 AM

Candy brings up some great information for buyers to start preparing for the pre-approval process.  If buyers make an appointment to meet with a lender, these are the basic requirements to get the ball rolling.  Once the pre-approval is issued, it is very important for the buyer to keep their credit intact by not making any large purchases, changing their job situation, or selling any of their major assets.  If you are thinking about purchasing a home this year, starting with a lender as soon as possible is the first step.  I have a list of lenders for every buyer situation … (4 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: Buyers: It is Okay to be Afraid, Buying a Home is a BIG Decision - 02/04/14 05:25 AM
Buyers:  It is Okay to be Afraid, Buying a Home is a BIG Decision
Even though I have helped hundreds of buyers purchase a home, every buyer is different in the way that they approach the home buying process.

There are buyers that sweat the small stuff.  They want to look over all the information.  Bring in extra sets of eyes.  Talk to the lender and run all the worse case and best case numbers.  Nothing wrong with that!  I am not the one paying the mortgage, you are!  Take your time to make sure that this home is comfortable … (0 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: Losing Your Dream Home Really Stinks! - 01/28/14 12:14 PM
Losing Your Dream Home Really Stinks!
We have all been there.  
You look at dozens of homes, and finally, you find it..."the one"...that one house that checks every box on your list. Sometimes it is at the top of the price range.  And it is usually the house that just came on the market.
No matter how hard the buyer's agent tries, our price recommendation falls flat. The buyer wants to test the seller and see how firm they are on the price.  It doesn't matter that it has been on the market for less than a week and we saw the … (12 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: FAQ #18 for Buyers: How Do YOU (My Buyer's Agent) Get Paid? - 05/02/11 04:08 AM
I have been working with one of my buyer couples for about a year, well 10 months really.  When they relocated to Cedar Rapids with Rockwell Collins last July, they decided that they would rent for a year first to get to know the area.  I showed them the available apartments and we kept in touch.  We started to look online at the end of January and then started to seriously look in the last 30 days.  As we were writing our first offer today, they stopped me at the end and asked me how they would pay me for all the … (2 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: FAQ#15 for Buyers: What if There is Another Offer on the House WE Want? - 01/31/11 02:28 AM
This can be a sticky one.  You never really know if you are truly competing with another buyer.  There are many unethical agents that will tell you that they think that there will be another offer in an effort to get my buyer to up their price to compete.  I never fall for it.  If there truly is another offer, the listing agent should give me the opportunity to change or rescind my offer prior to presenting to the seller. 
What if there is another offer on the house that you want to buy?
The answer is never simple.  There are … (6 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: So We Have an Accepted Offer...Now What? - 01/19/11 04:35 AM
This was an email that I received this morning from one of my buyer clients:
Hi Karen! 
We are so excited that the sellers have accepted our offer and we want to get started on what we need to do.  Can you tell us what to expect next?  Is there anything that we should be doing?  Thanks!
In the spirit of only answering this question once.....
The escrow process, which is the time period between the accepted offer and the closing, goes like this:
1.  We need to receive the fully executed purchase agreement with all counter offers, addendums and … (6 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: FAQ #8 for Buyers: What are Restrictive Covenants? - 01/12/11 01:48 AM
This is a question that typically comes up as we are searching for homes.  Sometimes it is discussed in the initial home buyer consultation particularly if there is a need for the ability to store a boat, camper, or trailer on the property, if they need to have fencing, or if they have a number of pets. 
What are Restrictive Covenants? 
Restrictive Covenants are the rules associated with the development and use of the property.  These are recorded at the time that the subdivision plat is approved. 
Some things that are addressed in restrictive covenants:
The minimum size of the … (12 comments)

buying a home in cedar rapids: FAQ #6 for Buyers: What is an Estate Property? - 01/10/11 03:42 AM
This question comes up once in a while from buyers...usually because online the remarks specifically state that it is an estate property, sold as is and with no disclosures.
An estate property is one where the owner of the property is deceased and there is an executor or a power of attorney that will be the one selling the property. 
Sometimes, there are multiple siblings involved that are not in the area and there is not just one person to negotiate with....this is a whole different situation!  Especially if you cannot get the siblings to agree on price and terms. 
Common … (3 comments)

Karen Feltman, Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa (Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group) Rainmaker large

Karen Feltman

Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Cedar Rapids, IA

More about me…

Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group

Address: 4850 Armar Drive SE, Ste B, Cedar Rapids, IA, 52403

Mobile: 319-521-0701

Office: 319-423-4139

Email Me

Whether you are relocating from another state or you are moving within the market area, there is always some adjustments to be made! My focus is on the well-being and safety of your family. A house is very important, but making the Cedar Rapids area your home takes a little more effort. My clients call me long after the closing for advice on a veternarian for their new puppy or the best daycares in the area. Meeting new people is always fun for me and I love my job! Call me if you would like to know what your home is worth in the current market or if you think that you might want to move up to another home somewhere else. We will miss you, but I will happy to get you on your way to your next adventure as quickly as possible!




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