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Posted by RE/MAX Professional Associates on 10/13/2019

With so much to think about these days, it is not surprising that some first-time home buyers make mistakes they later regret as they shop for a home for sale. Presented here are some of the most popular mistakes, along with tips to help you avoid a similar fate.

Looking for a home before getting a mortgage

Many first-time buyers make the mistake of seeing houses first before ever scheduling an appointment with a lending institution. In some big markets, housing inventory is still tight, and competition is so frightening. You might discover that you are eager to spend more to buy a property, or lose a property because you are not even pre-approved for a mortgage.

What is the solution to this? 

Before you fall in love with that perfect dream house you have been looking at all this while, ensure you get a complete underwritten pre-approval letter. Being pre-approved sends the signal that you are a serious buyer whose credit and finances are ready to get a loan successfully.

Buying a house that your financial muscle cannot carry

It’s easy to fall in love with houses that might make you spend more, but over-stretching yourself can cause you regrets later. It could even put you at higher risk of losing your home if you fall on the unpleasant hammer of hard financial times.

Any remedy? 

The best way to overcome this issue is to concentrate on the monthly expenses you can genuinely afford instead of looking at the highest loan amount you qualify for. Just because you are eligible for a $250,000 loan, that doesn’t mean you can afford the monthly payments that come with it. Factor in your other financial obligations that do not show on a credit report along with additional home expenses like insurance and taxes when deciding on how much house you can afford.

Emptying your savings just to buy a house

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is spending every dime you have. When you invest all your cash, including your savings on the down payment and closing costs, you set yourself up for disappointment. It will do you no good.

Some people make the mistake of spending all they have saved to make the required 20% down payment, so they don’t have to pay for mortgage insurance. However, they are making a grave mistake as they are left with no savings at all.

Homebuyers who pay 20 percent or more down do not have to pay for mortgage insurance when getting a conventional mortgage. That often translates into significant savings on the monthly mortgage payment. However, it is not worth the risk of living on the edge.

Here comes the solution.Let your aim be to save three to six months of living expenses in an emergency fund. Paying mortgage insurance is not the best, but killing your emergency or retirement savings just to make a sizeable down payment is even more of risk.

Talk to your real estate agent about their mortgage and lender recommendations and get yourself pre-approved for a realistic mortgage before starting your home search.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by RE/MAX Professional Associates on 10/6/2019

Whether you're looking for your first house, a vacation home, or a retirement condo, there's always an element of excitement in finding a new place you can call your own!

Although buying and selling real estate can be stressful, especially if you've never done it before, being prepared and knowing what to expect can help keep things on an even keel.

Similar to planning a vacation or a cross-country trip, you'll want to avoid missed connections, frustrating delays, and wasted time. When it comes to buying a home, a little research, planning, and expert advice can go a long way toward ensuring a smooth journey. Here are a few specifics:

Check your credit score: Your credit rating has a major impact on your ability to successfully apply for a mortgage and be offered a relatively low interest rate. Knowing your credit rating can help you understand your options, avoid unexpected surprises, and take action to correct errors in your credit report or improve your credit profile.

Prepare a wish list: One of the keys to getting what you want in a new home is to clarify and prioritize the features that matter the most to you. Your checklist can include everything from lot size and architectural style to the reputation of the school district and proximity to stores. Some house hunters also place a high value on features like a fireplace, screened-in porch, and an open floor plan.

Find a good real estate agent: A buyers' agent can provide you with an immense amount of help in finding properties for sale that meet your specifications. They can also provide assistance, advice, and guidance on the many steps involved in going from loan applicant to new home owner. An experienced agent can also negotiate the best possible deal, in terms of price, seller concessions, and other advantages.

Meet with mortgage lenders: A crucial step in preparing to become a homeowner is understanding the mortgage application process, knowing how much banks would be willing to lend you, and determining an affordable price range. Meeting with lenders is also the first step to comparing interest rates and choosing a financial institution that would best suit your needs. Here's a helpful tip from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: "Getting a preapproval letter helps you show sellers that you are a serious buyer – but it doesn’t commit you to a lender."

When it comes to searching for and buying a house, probably the best advice anyone could give you is "stay the course!" Let's face it: It's easy to give up, get discouraged, or settle for a home that's less than what you really want. However, when you adopt a "stay the course" mindset, you'll do a better job of staying motivated, focused, and well organized until you find just the right home for you, your family, and your future!





Posted by RE/MAX Professional Associates on 9/15/2019

There are many factors to consider when buying a home. As a first-time home buyer, you may know some specific features you’re looking for in your new home, but the rest of your preferences might not be in focus yet. In addition to the bedroom, garage, kitchen and yard requirements you’ll be starting to consider the style of home you want to purchase.

When it comes to architecture styles, there are many options from home designs based on classic architecture styles to those with mixed design or new innovative designs. So, how do you figure out your personal architecture preferences? Before you begin your search, you can look online and in architecture and home catalogs to see if any particular style strikes your fancy. Then, in preparation to work with an agent to narrow down your search try visiting homes with different architectural styles to see what you think in person.

While you’re just exploring styles, you don’t need to limit yourself by budget and individual requirements. It might be wise to avoid looking at mansions if you’re a first-time home buyer looking for a starter property, but you can keep it loose with the requirements to get a feel for your preferences. Just take a look at available homes in your area that have upcoming open houses and take a look at the underlying architecture.

So, what are the basic architectural styles you can explore?

Colonial — Quite popular in the northeast colonial style homes use symmetry in their design. Lots of windows flanked by largely structured shutters and white or light-colored siding and red brick. 

Mid-Century Modern — For a more open and simplistic design check out mid-century modern architecture. This style features flat lines, wide, single-story design and big glass windows. 

Craftsman/Bungalow — These homes have square layouts, large front porches with straight or angular columns with a wide base. Big shutters frame sizable windows and interiors feature lots of built-in shelving and molding.

Ranch Style — Originally designed based on rural ranches in the US ranch style homes use single-story and split-level, open floorplans and focus on usability. These homes have easy access to outdoors from many areas of the house and will typically have a garage.

Cape Cod Style — Marked by steep roofs, dormer windows and typically cedar shingles. This style is a North American take on the classic British cottage with more massive fireplaces and chimneys and has white trimmed interiors with crown molding. 

Art Deco / Art Nouveau — A modern style in the 1930s these structures will have flat roofs, are built with rounded corners and balconies and display decorative features on the home’s exterior. 

Contemporary — Referring only to the current architecture of the day. Today this means a sleek appearance both on the interior and exterior: large windows and outdoor garden space and a connection between inside and outside. You’ll see a lot of natural materials and neutral tones used in these homes. 

Mediterranean — You’ll find the Mediterranean style used in small bungalows and large mansion homes. Marked by tiled terracotta roofs, exterior elements like balconies, porticos, and archways this design models the hacienda style.

Tudor — A typical home style, the Tudor style comes from England and uses multi-gabled roofs with a steep pitch. You will find lots of brick and wood ornaments in these homes along with built-in features in the interior. 

These are just a few of the home architecture styles you’re likely to see during your home search. Take a look around at the prevailing styles in your area, mark different styles and features you like and review these along with your other home requirements with a trusted real estate agent. Now you’re ready to dig into your search and find the perfect home.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by RE/MAX Professional Associates on 8/25/2019

Buying your beginning home is one of the significant steps you will make in your life. It can be both exciting and daunting, which cause many first-time home buyers to grab the first home that falls within their budget quickly and others get themselves stuck in a mortgage that they will pay for a better part of the life. Real estate advertisement doesn't make it any easier. Well, you can relax now. Here are six helpful tips to alleviate the burden and mistakes involved in buying your first home.

1. First Things First, Be Prepared. As overwhelming as it seems, you must take a moment to get yourself ready before delving into the first-time home buying process. Take a moment and consider the type of home you want, the amount of money available for the purchase, and the amount of mortgage for which you qualify. You also should figure out how you want to go about the search. Do you need a real estate agent? Do not begin the home-buying process until you satisfy these conditions. 2. Carefully Scout for Your Dream Home. The process of searching for your dream home can be very challenging, which is why I advise first-time home buyers to explore thoroughly. Some home buyers, especially first-time home buyers, give up the search after the second tour. They resolve to rent or settling for just about any home on their list. To alleviate the frustration and stress that comes with the search, employ the service of a real estate agent. You could also search for listings online and ask for recommendations from friends and family. Do not do it yourself. 3. What Financing Options are Available in Your State? Although the program varies by state, every first-time home buyer has a couple of financing options to help them purchase their dream home. It is best to consult with your real estate agent for a suitable financing option. 4. Don’t be Scared to Negotiate the Offer. A common mistake seen among first-time home buyers is that they tend to compare the prices of houses at different locations. That is wrong! The locality of any home has a tremendous influence on its pricing. As a first-time home buyer, it is safest to ask your real estate agent for help. The agent is vastly knowledgeable in the field, as such, is in a better position to conclude the sale at a reasonable price. 5. A Home Inspection is Compulsory! Require a home inspection regardless of how flawless the home appears. Be sure to have a professional inspect every nook and cranny of the house before closing the deal. If you find faults that the seller willingly withheld during bargain the sale could fall through. You could also ask the seller to make repairs to seal the deal. 6. Close the Deal or Move on to the Next Home. There are two options available after inspection. You either close the deal or continue your search for your dream home. If the home inspection went well (that is you like what you saw), then it is time to close the deal. Congratulations on your first home!





Posted by RE/MAX Professional Associates on 7/21/2019

If you've set a goal of buying your first home within the next year, there are several things you can begin doing now to set the stage for a positive experience.

While it pays to familiarize yourself with everything from your credit score to mortgage options, choosing a good real estate agent will prove to be an invaluable advantage when navigating through the process of buying a home. An experienced, knowledgeable agent will help keep you on track, prepare necessary documents for you, and answer the myriad of questions that will occur to you.

Should you choose the first real estate agent you talk to? People occasionally find a perfect fit right off the bat, but it's often a good idea to interview a couple agents before you make your final decision. Having one or two points of comparison can provide you with a wider perspective of available choices.

Not only would you want to work with a professional who has a successful track record in helping first-time home buyers, but you also want to make sure your personality is compatible with your agent's communication style and energy level. Unless you stumble on the home of your dreams on the first day, you're probably going to be spending a lot of time with them. Most real estate agents do tend to be knowledgeable, resourceful, and service oriented, but your journey will be a lot smoother and more satisfying if you sign on with an agent who's a good match for your individual needs and personality.

One of the most effective ways to prepare yourself for a real estate search is to create lists of things you need to do, have, and schedule. It's also helpful to prioritize what you want in your ideal house. By identifying and reminding yourself of the features that are most important to you, you'll have a greater tendency to recognize what you want when you see it. You'll also find yourself communicating your needs and wants more clearly to your real estate agent. As is the case with any professional or personal relationship, good quality communication usually yields the best possible results.

As a home buyer, there are many property features and priorities you'll want to ponder and discuss with your significant other. In addition to your future home's square footage, bedroom space, and number of bathrooms, you may also be interested in the reputation of school districts, the character of neighborhoods you're considering, and the amount of privacy each property affords.

Another list worth compiling before you get too far into the house hunting process is a personal budget. By seeing how your income stacks up against your monthly expenses, you'll be in a stronger position to determine a realistic price range for your next home.