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  • The Wonderful World of Real Estate Blog

    Friday, May 19, 2017   /   by Zachary Johnson

    Making an Offer: 5 Mistakes to Avoid

    In competitive housing markets across the country, making an offer that sticks has become increasingly difficult. Ensure your client doesn’t make the process even tougher by succumbing to one of these common mistakes.
    Delaying
    “Time kills deals,” says Andrew Sandholm of BOND New York Properties in New York. “Dragging your feet means you could wind up paying more in a bidding war situation or missing out on the property altogether.” Buyers need to be ready with their paperwork, such as bank statements, a preapproval letter, and documents supporting proof of funds, from the day they begin house-hunting mode. That way they can pounce quickly with an offer when they do find a home they like.
    Making an offer for their preapproved amount
    Smart buyers are getting preapproved to show a seller they’re financially able to purchase a home. However, Chuck Silverston, principal at Unlimited Sotheby’s International Realty in Brookline, Mass., warns ...

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    Friday, April 28, 2017   /   by Zachary Johnson

    8 Questions to Ask Yourself When Deciding to Rent or Buy a House

    If you're at the age when your peers are making major life moves — getting married, having kids and buying homes – you might be feeling it's time to join them. Or you may simply just be at that stage all on your own.
    Either way, plenty of young adults are starting to get the home-buying itch. While there are a lot of appealing benefits to homeownership, taking on that kind of debt is not without risk. The decision to rent vs. buy is one you should make carefully.
    If you're trying to figure out your next move, consider asking yourself these eight questions. The answers should steer you in the right direction.
    1. What Is My Top Financial Priority?
    Buying a home will slow down your ability to make progress on other financial goals. You'll need to focus on lowering expenses or increasing your income so you can afford a down payment and monthly mortgage payments. (This guide can help you understand more about how to determine your down payment on a home.)
    Tha ...

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    Friday, April 21, 2017   /   by Zachary Johnson

    How to Prepare Your Budget for Buying Your First Home

    With the beginning of spring and more interest-rate hikes coming up, a lot of people are wondering if it's time to make the jump from renter to homeowner. Of course, making such a move involves much more than browsing real estate listings and cobbling together enough for a down payment.
    One of the most important things a first-time homebuyer can do is prepare their budget for this big financial event. We asked our partners and money-savers extraordinaire at Clark.com to share some of their best budgeting tips for people looking to buy a home this year. Here are Clark.com Managing Editor Alex Sadler's responses, edited for length.
    What Tweaks Should People Make to Their Budgets in Preparation for Buying a Home?
    First of all, there's a whole lot more that goes into buying a home than many people realize. I'm actually going through the process right now, and believe me, it ain't like walking into a leasing office and signing up for an apartment.
    When you're pr ...

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    Thursday, March 16, 2017   /   by Zachary Johnson

    Fed Votes to Raise Rates: The Housing Impact

    The Federal Reserve is picking up the pace, voting on Wednesday to raise its key interest rate just three months after its last rate hike. The Fed announced that short-term interest rates will increase by one-quarter of a percentage point and suggested that two similar increases likely will occur later this year. Mortgage rates aren’t directly tied to the Fed’s short-term interest rates but tend to follow them.

    Read more: Rising Rates, Rising Sales

    “If you think it’s been hard so far to find a home that fits your budget and your needs, it’s going to get worse,” says Jonathan Smoke, realtor.com®’s chief economist. “There will be even fewer homes for sale” now.
    Homeowners who already have lower mortgage rates locked in may have less incentive to trade up or buy a new home. Their increasing desire to stay put could continue to press already tight inventories of homes for-sale across the country.
    As of Tuesday, the 30-y ...

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    Tuesday, March 14, 2017   /   by Zachary Johnson

    Spring housing already overheating.....

    The spring housing market started early this year, not because of higher-than-average temperatures but because of hotter-than-average demand and overheating home prices.
    This year may be the starkest example of a post-recession reality that is redefining housing as we know it.
    "This spring housing market is shaping up to be another doozy for homebuyers," said Ralph McLaughlin, chief economist for home-listing website Trulia. "Housing affordability is the key to helping break yet another year of gridlocked inventory, but all signs are showing that homes this spring will be much less affordable than last year."

    Affordability is being hit on several fronts: The foreclosure crisis is over, but it left behind an entirely new landscape for potential buyers. Entry-level homes are scarce because investors bought tens of thousands of them during the crisis and turned them into rentals. The number of single-family rentals jumped to more than 15 million, up from about 11 million in 2 ...

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