buying a home: Buying A Home - Save for a Down Payment - 10/25/09 10:26 AM
I Need A Down Payment To Buy A House and I just can't seem to get there!!!
So you've been hearing about the First Time Home Buyer Tax Credit; up to $8000 tax CREDIT if you haven't owned a home in the last 3 years and buy before Dec 1, 2009.  Who wouldn't want 8K in FREE MONEY?
But you need to come up with the 3.5% down payment in order for the deal to work.  You've been saving and you are Close, but not quite there yet. 
 Try these ideas:     
Sell Some Stuff - Do you have DVDs, CDs, … (1 comments)

buying a home: Moving Checklist - 09/27/09 12:55 PM
Getting Ready to Move?
So you've got a contract on your house - now the fun begins.  You know you've got to pack but don't forget to let everyone know your new address. 
Here is a list of those to notify:
Provide the post office with your forwarding address two to four weeks ahead of the move.
Notify your credit card companies, magazine subscriptions, and bank of your change of address.
Create a list of friends, relatives, and business colleagues who need to be notified about your move.
Notify your children's school about your move (some school districts will require a … (4 comments)

buying a home: Buying A Home -Take Advantage of the 2009 Tax Credit - 02/19/09 07:02 AM
The New Stimulus Bill that President Obma just signed into law gives First Time Home Buyers a TAX CREDIT of 10% of the purchase price for a home purchased between January 1, 2009 and December 1, 2009.  This means if you buy a home that costs $80,000 or more, you will receive an $8000 tax credit.   The maximum you can receive is $8000, but even if you pay a lot more than 80K for a house, that $8,000 is still a nice little sum.
This 3 Bedroom, 2.5 Bath home for sale in Hoover Alabama is priced at $153,900.  If you … (0 comments)

buying a home: Buying A Home - New or Preowned - 11/07/08 01:21 AM
There are several things to consider when buying a new home.  There are lots of Homes to Buy in Hoover, Alabama.  Some are new and others have been previously owned. Some people I work with only want to buy a newly constructed home.  I spoke to a teenager once whose parents had relocated several times and they ALWAYS bought a NEW house.  She was wigged out at the thought of moving to a home where someone had slept in her bedroom!!!  OKAY.......
New homes are really nice: everything is expected to work, the colors and decorating is "in style" and many … (0 comments)

buying a home: Remember to Ask THIS Question - 10/22/08 06:05 AM
I had a closing yesterday.
That is definitely something to celebrate!! 
But it ALMOST didn't happen.
I was representing the buyer and we negotiated an aggressive, but fair offer.  The seller's agent prepared a net sheet for the seller and he was going to have to bring close to 15K to closing.  He went to the bank and borrowed the money to come to closing.  This was not an easy feat during the state of the economy 2 weeks ago, but he found the money.
The day before closing, the attorney prepared the HUD statement and the seller was STILL … (13 comments)

buying a home: Buying A Home - Save Spare Change - 10/03/08 10:32 AM
I've written before about saving up to buy a house in Hoover, Alabama.  The down payment on FHA loans went up from 3% to 3.5% on October 1st, so for an FHA at least, you have to save a little more to get into that home.  This means that if you want to buy a $100,000 house, you will need $3500 for your down payment.
There are many ways to save for that house.  One idea is to save your loose change.  You can get a big jar and at the end of the day, just empty your pockets. You can use … (0 comments)

buying a home: Buying A Home - That Ugly Bath Can Be Fixed - 08/01/08 10:46 AM
When looking at buying A Home, one of the biggest yes or no items in the buyer's mind is the BATHROOM.  I have seen people turn down great backyards, super dens and even updated kitchens with the latest bells and whistles because the bathroom is too small, or the tile is the wrong color.
Buyers should know that fixing up the bathroom is NOT that hard.  If the room is too small, many times you can take in a nearby closet space or take out part of another room.  These are easy fixes that a contractor can do fairly easily and … (2 comments)

buying a home: Buying A Home - Consider the Cost of Gas - 07/23/08 02:12 PM
I went to the gas pump the other day in Hoover, Alabama, and it cost me $51 to fill up and I wasn't even on empty!  I was appalled. Now, I don't have an SUV, I have a little car.  This is absolutely outrageous.  I don't understand why congress is wasting time debating drilling for oil off the coast in Alaska when that activity will not produce any oil for 10 years and it will only make the Rich oil companies and their CEOs RICHER.  Don't get me started....
Anyway, one thing it DID do was make me thankful that I live 4 … (0 comments)

buying a home: Selling Your Home? Get That Colored Mulch out of the Flowerbeds! - 05/20/08 10:42 AM
When driving down the street in a neighborhood, have you ever seen that red mulch made of recycled rubber sticking out at you?  Now I know we are trying to go "green" and recycle, however, we need to remember that curb appeal is critical to getting the most money for your home.  The red color is bad enough, but sometimes it even clashes with the color of the house and WOW. Also, because the eye is drawn to the colored mulch and not the plants, you totally loose the value of the hard work and money you have spent on planting … (0 comments)

buying a home: Time to Get Off the Fence - 05/04/08 02:25 PM
I have been working with a client for several weeks now.  We have looked at Homes ALL OVER the Birmingham, Al area.  We have finally narrowed it down to a neighborhood and really like one house the best so it's time to put an offer on paper.  The client sends an e-mail and says they heard bad news on the radio this morning and they are not sure it is time to buy.
Well, we have been hearing bad news almost every day for over a year now.  Bad news sells, good news doesn't and every time the media gets a chance … (0 comments)

buying a home: Bluebird vs Mockingbird - 04/30/08 06:30 AM
Outside my dining room window is a bluebird box.  This year a bluebird couple has decided to make it their home.  I have spent many mornings watching them.  First the male introduced his bride to the house and she gave her approval.  Then they spent many hours bringing material to the house making it just so. Lately, there has been a lot of activity as the birds have been bringing food to the house to feed their babies.
This morning I was sitting in my dining room eating breakfast and I noticed quite a bit of activity outside the window.  A large … (0 comments)

buying a home: Home For Sale in Liberty Park, Vestavia Hills, Alabama - 04/25/08 01:40 AM
Take a look at 7130 Lake Run Circle, Vestavia Hills, Alabama
Wow, this is a fabulous property!! Tucked away on a totally private lot, this exquiste 4 bedroom, 4.5 bath home has exceptional detailing and is an entertainer's dream.  There are 3 rooms plus a bath in the basement (which makes a great teen get away or a guest suite).  But the crowning feature is the lushly landscaped backyard with a heated in-ground pool. It's like being on vacation EVERY DAY.
If you'd like to see more of this home Click Here.  I'd be happy to answer any questions, or give you a tour.  Let me … (0 comments)

buying a home: Updated Townhome For Sale in Birmingham, Alabama - 04/21/08 12:06 PM

2520 Hampstead Drive only 89,900. 
This Awesome Townhome in Grayson Valley is spacious, has great colors and a lot of upgrades. There are 2 large bedrooms. There is even a fireplace in the Living Room.  If you want a dog this is the perfect place because there is a fenced backyard and a covered patio.  Easy commute to downtown Birmingham and just a short drive to the new Pinnacle Shopping center. 
If you'd like to learn more about this home click here.  Like what you see, I'd love to talk to you about buying this great home.  Call me at 821-3312 or … (0 comments)

buying a home: New Listing in Pelham, Alabama - 04/21/08 11:49 AM

101 High Ridge Trace - $158,900. 
This former model home in the Lookout Point section of High Ridge has Just Been Listed.  Refrigerator, Washer, Dryer, TV above Fireplace to stay - Just Move Right in.  This home also has a screened porch that overlooks a nice fenced back yard.  High Ridge is convenient to Shelby Medical Center, I-65 and the new Alabaster Shopping Center.  Click here to see more info.
If you would like more information on this great home or would like information about YOUR neighborhood, contact me at

buying a home: Working With A Realtor - 04/19/08 01:49 AM
Once a month I meet with a group of friends and we play Bunco. Some of us live in Hoover, Alabama, and others are spread throughout the Birmingham area. It's not so much about the game of bunco as it is that we get together to have fun and play.  We have been meeting monthly at each other's homes for over 10 years now.  We've been through marriages, moves to new houses, birth of children and grandchildren, sickness, death of loved ones, lay-offs and jobs changes and much, much more.
Our members basically come from three professions: teachers, computer programmers and realtors.  … (0 comments)

buying a home: Buying A Home - Get Your Credit In Order - 04/17/08 05:22 AM
Most people today do not have the cash to purchase a home.  Instead they borrow a good portion of it from a Mortgage Company, Bank or Credit Union. One of the first things the lender will do is run a Credit Report. Having "Good Credit" is the first step toward getting favorable terms on your mortgage. You can check to see what is on your credit report for FREE at
If you see anything that doesn't look right, contact the credit bureau and get it corrected BEFORE you go to apply for a loan.  A few years ago, I had a … (0 comments)

buying a home: Buying A Home - Decide Where You Want To Live - 04/15/08 11:17 AM
So you want a home of your own, but WHERE?  With over a million people in the Greater Birmingham, Alabama area there are tons of choices about where you can find a Home to Buy.
First, look at your place of employment and how far away you want to be.  Traffic is getting worse by the day and 15 miles can mean an hour commute - one way.  Some people don't mind that because it lets them unwind from the day, but others.....well 2 hours in the car = road rage!!!!!!
Second, look at entertainment.  Where are your friends?  Do you go out … (0 comments)

buying a home: Buying A Home - What Can You Afford? - 04/12/08 03:15 AM
So you're thinking about buying a home and don't know how much you can afford.  A general rule of thumb is - you can buy a property that costs 2 to 3 times your income.  So, if you make 40K per year, you can afford a house between $80,000 and $120,000.
To be more specific, your mortgage payment shouldn't be more than 28% of your gross income AND your mortgage payment plus all your monthly payments should not be more than 36% of your gross income.  Fewer debts makes it easier to buy a house so if you're thinking about Home Ownership, … (0 comments)

buying a home: Buying A Home - Develop A Wish List - 04/11/08 06:32 AM

You keep hearing we are in a "Buyer's Market".  That means there are a lot of houses out there to look at.  Personally, I cannot look at more than 10 houses before they all start to run together so it can be VERY confusing.
The best thing to do is sit down and make a Wish List.  What do you REALLY NEED in a house and then what do you WANT.  For example, if you are going to work from home, then you will NEED a room for a home office, or if you have a child and also need a guest … (0 comments)

Toni Bird (Coldwell Banker Preferred Properties)

Toni Bird

Hoover, AL

More about me…

Coldwell Banker Preferred Properties

Address: 2820 Columbiana Rd., Suite 101, Birmingham, AL , 35216

Office: (205) 822-2021

Mobile: (205) 821-3312

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