homeowner: Handling Scammers, Squatters and Trespassers - 06/18/24 06:20 AM
It is important to know your legal rights to protect your property when people have no rights to your property.  In today's world you need to be aware of red flags such as fake documentation, false property listings and counterfeit deeds.  If your gut tells you a client is too easy to work with or their actions are out of the ordinary, such as demanding or needing immediate money from a sale.  This is the time you need to trust your gut and take appropriate action.  Scammers tend to seek out properties that have no mortgage, have an ID that does … (2 comments)

homeowner: New Home Inspections - 05/15/24 06:21 AM
If you are a home buyer that is having a new home built you might want to consider hiring your own inspector to inspect the home.  Sometime the builders’ sales personnel will discourage you from hiring your personnel inspector by stating the builder has several inspections during the building cycle. This is true, but these inspectors may be more willing to give the builder a favorable report.  A home buyer who hires an independent inspector to do phase inspections has a better chance of solving problems earlier.  Recommend the buyer do the following 3 inspections: just prior pouring the foundation, just … (0 comments)

homeowner: Strategies for Maintaining a Home - 07/11/23 06:29 AM
Recent bank failures should be a wakeup call to all homeowners and people who have deposits in their bank that are above $250,000.  The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) does not insure amounts that are above this amount.  Homeowners must maintain all their assets which includes maintenance of their hard assets such as their home and investment property and financial            assets they have deposited in financial institutions. For most people homeownership represents their largest asset, and they need to manage these assets to maintain long-term sustainability.  Homeowners should follow the following risk mitigation strategies that are normally followed by banks to … (1 comments)

homeowner: Difference Between Inspection and Appraisal on Home - 06/07/23 06:11 AM
One important step that should be included when purchasing a new home is to request an inspection be done on the property.  This should be scheduled no later than immediately after a contract has been accepted by both the buyer and seller.  Normally, the contract allows a short period of time when this task can be accomplished.  The short period of time should be sufficient to inspect and negotiate repair costs if necessary.  Inspection identifies the condition of the property prior to finalizing the transaction.  Appraisal requires a professional to determine the market value of the property which the buyer desires … (4 comments)

homeowner: Tips to Determine How Much Mortgage - 05/16/23 06:30 AM
Before committing to a home mortgage be sure to calculate how much mortgage you can safely fit into your budget.  Homeownership should make you feel secure and safe.  This means not taking the largest mortgage that your lender will permit.  As a buyer, look ahead to anticipate life event desires and how that might influence the budget.  These could include going back to school and/or having a child.  Factor these lifestyle issues into the budget.  Remember many lenders will not understand or consider your current and future financial personal goals.  Lenders base their loan approval on a formula.  Following are tips … (4 comments)

homeowner: Home Improvements - 04/11/23 06:14 AM
When you decide to do a home improvement many times you ask yourself whether I should do it yourself (DIY) or hire a pro.  Doing it yourself usually brings a sense of self-accomplishment and saves money.  Sometimes it is wise to have a professional contractor handle the job especially when it is complicated, lack of experience, and/or when you do not have proper tools.  Following tips when to DIY improvements: 
Small projects – If not experience at home improvement projects only consider small projects at first. Before starting the project, do research on how to successfully do and complete the project. … (4 comments)

homeowner: Lesser-Known Fees That Factor into Buying a Home - 02/15/23 06:32 AM
Many home buyers are not aware of all fees charged that makeup the total cost of purchasing a home.  Some of these fees are normally paid prior to closing while others are paid at closing.  Fees paid at closing will be itemize on your closing statement which you should receive a copy to review prior to closing.  The fees that are lesser known to the general public will be reviewed below:    
Inspections of property – As a home buyer who is hiring an inspector to perform an inspection on property that you recently signed a written contract to purchase, you need … (2 comments)

homeowner: Possible Calmer Housing Market in The Future - 05/17/22 07:02 AM
The housing market is beginning to show signs of getting back to normal.   This is indicated by fewer contract signings and decrease in pending home sales recently.  The only area that has seen an increased number of sales is the northeast.  With fewer contract signings this is an indication that the market may be calming and moving towards a more normal market condition.  Now that interest rates are increasing this reduces the number of potential buyers, therefore slowing the number of homes being sold.  The desire to purchase a new home remains strong, but the financial ability has become a limiting … (2 comments)

homeowner: Competition of Faster Rising Home Prices Versus Seller Power and Wages - 04/26/22 06:25 AM
Income required to meet the new home affordability standard is growing at a faster rate.  This is resulting in less potential home buyers being able to afford higher median home prices and high mortgage rates.  At same time, there are sellers that are recognizing some buyers are being priced out and their listing price is too high therefore are dropping their price.  Affordability is determined by the amount income needed to cover homeowner expenses which includes mortgage, property taxes, maintenance, and insurance for median-priced single-family house.  The past few years low mortgage rates and increase wages helped to offset rising home … (2 comments)

homeowner: Real Estate Trends for Year 2022 - 04/06/22 06:21 AM
This coming year home sellers will hold the upper hand, especially through the spring.  As we go into the year buyers will be more sensitive to home price increases.  This is caused by higher home prices, mortgage rates and cost of other products which will cause potential buyers to tighten their budget.  If this happens buyers will take a step back from the market and focus more on their daily needs which may lead to moderating home prices. Too a degree we have already seen this happen last year due to double-digit home price increase.  Going forward there will be a … (1 comments)

homeowner: Home Bidding Wars Are Rising in January 2022 - 03/10/22 06:18 AM
Competition for buying a home has been unseasonably hot this past year.  Buyers faced bidding wars with low inventories.  NAR reported that January 2022 had the fewest number of homes available for sale on record with most of these homes sold under a month.  Mortgage rates are anticipated to rise in the coming months which may cause home buyers to lock-in at earliest date to avoid further increases.  Since there are few homes on the market and townhomes appear to be creating the most competition in some areas. Current buyers desiring to buy a home are trying to locate a home … (2 comments)

homeowner: Controlling Weeds in Your Lawn - 03/24/21 06:24 AM
Homeowners have a year around job fighting weeds in their yard.  In addition, they sometimes have beautiful flowers that are present in the yard, but most people prefer the flowers to grow only in their designated areas.  Controlling weeds is best done in the fall and early spring.  This allows the homeowner to take advantage of the growing season for turf grass.  Having thick lawn is the best defense against weeds.  When there are many weeds, this is an indication there are problems with the soil.  If the lawn is free of weeds, then focus on making sure the grass is … (2 comments)

homeowner: Expert Thoughts When Shopping for Mortgage - 02/26/21 12:31 PM
Currently mortgage rates are low, this is providing savings to people who are shopping for a new home or wanting to refinance their current home.  The mortgage process is not well understood by many borrowers. Borrowers should take some time to understand the mortgage process.  This could save the buyer thousands of dollars.  Before making a loan decision the annual percentage rate (APR) needs to be understood.  This rate includes fees that are charged by the lender and added to the quoted loan interest rate.  For example, the quoted loan rate may be 2.5% but your actual APR is 2.8%.  The … (1 comments)

homeowner: Pros and Cons Mortgage Escrow - 02/09/21 06:57 AM
Many times, buyers who are purchasing a home need to decide whether they need or should setup a mortgage escrow account when they close on their new home.  The purpose of a mortgage escrow account is to allow the mortgage company to pay the homeowners property taxes and homeowners insurance premiums when due.  These premium amounts are included in the homeowners’ monthly mortgage payments.  A buyer who is putting down less than 20% usually has no choice but to have an escrow account due to lender requirement.  Most lenders require a buyer to have an escrow account until buyer has at … (0 comments)

homeowner: How to Prepare Your Finances for Home Ownership - 12/15/20 06:34 AM
The day you decide to purchase a house, this is the day you need to start preparing yourself financially.  For many homebuyers, this takes time to prepare yourself for this financial undertaking.  First, you must develop a plan how to handle the most expensive undertaking of your lifetime.  Below are things you need to consider when preparing yourself to purchase your new home:  
Credit score – Most people understand a good credit score is needed to qualify for a home mortgage.  Potential buyer needs to prepare themselves financially, this means having a low debt-to-income ratio.  This ratio should be equal to … (0 comments)

homeowner: Suggestions How to Improve Home Life - 10/01/20 06:34 AM
A home needs to be more than a place where you live.  It should be a place that is a retreat, and where you can relax.  Sometimes this is not the case which causes more stress and reminds us of more things that need to be done when we step into the house.  Our goal here should be to steer ourselves towards a more relaxing and cozier atmosphere that allows us to forget daily problems from work and outside world.  There are some mood changing ideas and household tips that will help you improve your comfort and reduce your daily worries: … (0 comments)

homeowner: Family and Friends Provide Down Payment Assistance to First-Time Buyers - 02/20/20 06:01 AM
According National Association of Realtors (NAR), one-third of first-time home buyers turn to family and friends when purchasing a home last year.  Many of these buyers are receiving a gift.  If the financial aid received is documented as a gift in the loan process, the money is not required to be given back to the person who gave the gift.  Another way to assist a first-time home buyer is setting up a Co-Ownership and Shared Equity Arrangement. This type of arrangement provides tax advantages and requires a written contract signed by all parties defining the terms of the agreement.  This should … (0 comments)

homeowner: Freddie Max Fixer-Upper Loans - 07/17/19 06:11 AM
 Recently Freddie Max started offering a new product to homeowners to help them remodel and spruce up their properties.  The new mortgage product will offer greater flexible financing options for aging homes.  As homes age, many homeowners are wanting to remodel and update their homes.  With this new loan product, homeowners will be able to finance or refinance fixer-uppers.  In addition, eligible home buyers can combine a home and finance a fixer-upper loans into single mortgage.  Research is showing that there are larger number of older homes in need of repair which is an option when buying a home.  This option … (0 comments)

homeowner: Home Staging Reduces Market Time and Increase Sales Price - 04/04/19 05:51 AM
Home staging has been gaining greater popularity because sellers are realizing that homes sell faster, and there is greater potential of receiving a higher sales price.  This may be due to some of the following reasons:
         many buyers are watching TV home-makeovers          selling agents are encouraging and assisting sellers to stage their home for faster sale potential          staging a home often allows seller to receive a greater return on their investment          many seller agents feel that home shows tend to help promote increase value from staging            TV home shows are increasingly influencing buyers’ expectations what … (2 comments)

homeowner: How to Help Seniors Not to Abandon Homeownership - 11/28/18 06:47 AM
People over the age of 55 begin to think about whether they should own or rent a home.  Many of these people desire to downsize and have hassle-free lifestyle which includes little or no maintenance.  At this time, this age group is becoming the fastest growing segment of renters.  Apartments owners now are offering amenity-rich apartments that attracts many baby-boomers, but seniors need to be reminded a home is probably more affordable in many U.S. markets.  In this environment, realtors have an opportunity to provide services to keep them up on homeownership:
Understand Seniors Needs and Desires - It is important to … (3 comments)

 
John Watts (Keller Williams Realty)

John Watts

Austin, TX

More about me…

Keller Williams Realty

Address: 12515-8 Research Blvd, Ste. 100 , Austin, TX, 78759

Office: (512) 751-3359

Mobile: (512) 751-3359



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