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10 Steps to Buying a Home This Summer [INFOGRAPHIC]

10 Steps to Buying a Home This Summer [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: If you are thinking of buying a home, you may not know where to start. Here is a simple list of 10 steps that you will go through to purchase a home. Make sure to ask your agent for details about each step and what else may be required in your area! Content previously posted on Keeping Current MattersPowered by WPeMatico ...
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Happy Independence Day!

Happy Independence Day!

Wishing you & yours a safe & Happy 4th of July! Content previously posted on Keeping Current MattersPowered by WPeMatico ...
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Is Mortgage Debt out of Control?

Is Mortgage Debt out of Control?

The housing crisis of the last decade was partially caused by unhealthy levels of mortgage debt. Homeowners were using their homes as ATMs by refinancing and swapping their equity for cash. When prices started to fall, many homeowners found themselves in a negative equity situation (where their mortgage was higher than the value of their home). As a result, they walked away. This caused prices to fall even further. Headlines are again talking about record ...
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Millennials Are Increasing the Demand for Condominiums

Millennials Are Increasing the Demand for Condominiums

When deciding to buy a home, people are presented with many different options. The type of home you buy depends on your needs, budget, and in many cases, the desired maintenance level. For many millennials, their choice has been buying a condominium! According to CoreLogic, “Last year about 43% of all condo home-purchase mortgage applications were submitted by FTHBs… Similarly, the data show condos were more popular with young homebuyers and empty nesters. For instance, ...
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Top 5 Reasons You Should NOT FSBO

Top 5 Reasons You Should NOT FSBO

Rising home prices coupled with a lack of inventory in today’s market may cause some homeowners to consider selling their home on their own (known in the industry as a For Sale By Owner). However, a FSBO might not be a good idea for the vast majority of sellers. The top 5 reasons are listed below: 1. Online Strategy for Prospective Purchasers Recent studies have shown that 95% of buyers search online for a home ...
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Americans Rank Real Estate Best Investment for 6 Years Running! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Americans Rank Real Estate Best Investment for 6 Years Running! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Real estate has outranked stocks/mutual funds, gold, savings accounts/CDs, and bonds as the best long-term investment among Americans for the last 6 years. Stock owners are more positive about real estate than stocks as an investment. Of the 4 listed, real estate is the only investment you can also live in! Content previously posted on Keeping Current MattersPowered by WPeMatico ...
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Know What to Expect at Your Home Inspection

Know What to Expect at Your Home Inspection

So you made an offer and it was accepted. Now, your next task is to have the home inspected prior to closing. Agents oftentimes make your offer contingent on a clean home inspection. This contingency allows you to renegotiate the price you paid for the home, ask the sellers to cover repairs, or in some cases, to walk away. Your agent can advise you on the best course of action once the report is filed. How ...
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Before You Look for Your Dream Home: Know What You Want vs. What You Need!

Before You Look for Your Dream Home: Know What You Want vs. What You Need!

In this day and age of being able to shop for anything anywhere, it is really important to know what you’re looking for when you start your home search. If you’ve been thinking about buying a home of your own for some time now, you’ve probably come up with a list of things that you’d LOVE to have in your new home. Many new homebuyers fantasize about the amenities that they see on television or Pinterest, and ...
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Having a Professional on Your Side Makes All the Difference!

Having a Professional on Your Side Makes All the Difference!

In today’s fast-paced world where answers are a Google search away, there are some who may wonder what the benefits of hiring a real estate professional to help them in their home search are. The truth is, the addition of more information causes more confusion. Shows like Property Brothers, Fixer Upper, and dozens more on HGTV have given many a false sense of what it’s like to buy and sell a home. Now more than ever, you need an expert on ...
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Stop Wondering What Your Budget Is & Get Pre-Approved!

Stop Wondering What Your Budget Is & Get Pre-Approved!

In many markets across the country, the number of buyers searching for their dream homes outnumbers the number of homes for sale. This has led to a competitive marketplace where buyers often need to stand out. One way to show that you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search. Even if you are not in an incredibly competitive market, understanding your budget will give ...
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Young First-Time Buyers Are Saving for Their Dream Homes

Young First-Time Buyers Are Saving for Their Dream Homes

Young buyers (Millennials & Gen Z) have waited longer than previous generations to enter the housing market for their first home. However, this hasn’t stopped them from dreaming about the home they will eventually buy. Many spend hours searching listings and building Pinterest boards of their favorite home features. According to a survey from Open Listings, 70% of single renters are more likely to spend their Sunday nights swiping through house listings than dating profiles ...
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What You Need to Know About Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)

What You Need to Know About Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)

Whether it is your first time or your fifth, it is always important to know all the facts when it comes to buying a home. With the large number of mortgage programs available that allow buyers to purchase homes with down payments below 20%, you can never have too much information about Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). What is PMI? Freddie Mac defines PMI as: “An insurance policy that protects the lender if you are unable to pay your ...
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Why Is So Much Paperwork Required to Get a Mortgage?

Why Is So Much Paperwork Required to Get a Mortgage?

When buying a home today, why is there so much paperwork mandated by the lenders for a mortgage loan application? It seems like they need to know everything about you. Furthermore, it requires three separate sources to validate each and every entry on the application form. Many buyers are being told by friends and family that the process was a hundred times easier when they bought their home ten to twenty years ago. There are two very good reasons that ...
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5 Reasons to Sell Your House This Summer

5 Reasons to Sell Your House This Summer

Here are 5 compelling reasons listing your home for sale this summer makes sense. 1. Demand Is Strong The latest Buyer Traffic Index from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing, and able to purchase… and are in the market right now! More often than not, multiple buyers are competing with each other for the same home. Take ...
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Top 4 Renovations for the Greatest Return on Investment! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Top 4 Renovations for the Greatest Return on Investment! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: If you are planning on listing your house for sale this year, these four home improvement projects will net you the most Return on Investment (ROI). Minor renovations can go a long way toward improving the quality of your everyday life and/or impressing potential buyers. Whether you plan to stay in your house for a long time or just a few years, it’s smart to know which home renovations add the most value. Content ...
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Time for Your Dream Home, Gen X!

Time for Your Dream Home, Gen X!

During the housing market crash, Gen X homeowners lost more wealth than other generations. However, things are changing now! A strong economy, increasing home prices, and the recovery of the housing market are helping this generation to regain their lost wealth. According to Pew Research Center, “Their fortunes have rebounded more than those of other generations during the post-recession economic expansion and as home and stock prices have risen. Since 2010, the median net worth ...
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3 Things to Know in the Housing Market Today!

3 Things to Know in the Housing Market Today!

A lot is happening in the world, and it’s having a direct impact on the housing market. The reality is this: some of it is positive and some of it may be negative. Some we just don’t know yet. The following three areas of the housing market are critical to understand: interest rates, building materials, and the outlook for an economic slowdown. 1. Interest Rates One of the most important things to consider when buying ...
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Renting or Owning, What Is Better for You?

Renting or Owning, What Is Better for You?

In a real estate market where home prices are rising, many have begun to reexamine the idea of buying a home, choosing instead, to rent for a while. But often, there is a dilemma: should you keep paying rent, knowing that rent is rising too, or should you lock in your housing cost and buy a home? Let’s look at both scenarios and analyze the pros and cons of each: Renting With the housing market ...
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What is the Cost of Waiting Until Next Year to Buy? [INFOGRAPHIC]

What is the Cost of Waiting Until Next Year to Buy? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The “cost of waiting to buy” is defined as the additional funds necessary to buy a home if prices & interest rates were to increase over a period of time. Freddie Mac forecasts interest rates to rise to 4.5% by the Q4 2020. CoreLogic predicts home prices to appreciate by 4.8% over the next 12 months. If you are ready and willing to buy your dream home, find out if you are able to! Content ...
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What is Important to Boomers when Selling their House?

What is Important to Boomers when Selling their House?

If you are a “baby boomer” (born between 1946 and 1964), you may be thinking about selling your current home. Your children may have finally moved out. Your large, four-bedroom house with three bathrooms no longer fits the bill. Taxes are too high. Utilities are too expensive. Cleaning and repair are too difficult. You may be ready to move into a home that better fits your current lifestyle. Many fellow boomers have already made the ...
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The Feeling You Get from Owning Your Home

The Feeling You Get from Owning Your Home

We often talk about the financial reasons why buying a home makes sense. But, more often than not, the emotional reasons are the more powerful and compelling ones. No matter what shape or size your living space is, the concept and feeling of home can mean different things to different people. Whether it’s a certain scent or a favorite chair, that feeling of safety and security you gain from owning your own home is simultaneously ...
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How Homeownership Delivers Unsurpassed Family Wealth

How Homeownership Delivers Unsurpassed Family Wealth

There are many financial benefits to homeownership, but probably none more important than its ability to create family wealth. How Housing Matters is a joint project of the Urban Land Institute and the MacArthur Foundation. It is an online resource for research and information on how homeownership contributes to individual and community success. Their article, The First Rung on the Ladder to Economic Opportunity Is Housing, explains the importance of homeownership to a family’s financial ...
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4 Reasons to Buy A Home This Summer

4 Reasons to Buy A Home This Summer

Here are four reasons to consider buying today instead of waiting. 1. Prices Will Continue to Rise CoreLogic’s latest U.S. Home Price Insights reports that home prices have appreciated by 3.7% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts that prices will continue to increase at a rate of 4.8% over the next year. Home values will continue to appreciate. Waiting may no longer makes sense. 2. Mortgage Interest Rates Are Projected to Increase ...
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The Top Reasons to Own Your Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Top Reasons to Own Your Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: June is National Homeownership Month! Now is a great time to reflect on the many benefits of homeownership that go way beyond the financial. What reasons do you have to own your own home? Content previously posted on Keeping Current MattersPowered by WPeMatico ...
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The Ultimate Truth about Housing Affordability

The Ultimate Truth about Housing Affordability

There have been many headlines decrying an “affordability crisis” in the residential real estate market. While it is true that buying a home is less affordable than it had been over the last ten years, we need to understand why and what that means. On a monthly basis, the National Association of Realtors (NAR), produces a Housing Affordability Index. According to NAR, the index… “…measures whether or not a typical family earns enough income to ...
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Multigenerational Homes Are on the Rise

Multigenerational Homes Are on the Rise

As loved ones start to get older, we start to wonder: how long will they be able to live alone? Will they need someone there to help them with daily life? There’s a reason to ask those questions now more than ever, as the average life expectancy in the U.S. is years old!  As a result, 41% of Americans in the market are searching for a home that can accommodate a multigenerational family. The graph ...
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2 Things You Need to Know to Properly Price Your Home

2 Things You Need to Know to Properly Price Your Home

In today’s housing market, home prices are increasing at a slower pace (3.7%) than they have over the last eight years (6-7%). However, they are still are above historical norms. Low supply of listed homes and high demand from buyers has pushed prices to rise rapidly. In the mind of the homeowner, annual home price appreciation over 6% has become the new normal. This becomes a challenge when a homeowner looks to refinance or sell ...
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The Impact Staging Your Home Has On Your Sale Price [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Impact Staging Your Home Has On Your Sale Price [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The National Association of Realtors surveyed their members & released the findings of their Profile of Home Staging. 62% of seller’s agents say that staging a home decreases the amount of time a home spends on the market. 50% of staged homes saw a 1-10% increase in dollar-value offers from buyers. 77% of buyer’s agents said staging made it easier for buyers to visualize the home as their own. The top rooms to ...
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4 Most Popular Bottom Line Investments in America

4 Most Popular Bottom Line Investments in America

Every year, Gallup surveys Americans to determine their choice for the best long-term investment. Respondents are given a choice between real estate, stocks, gold, and savings accounts. For the sixth year in a row, real estate has come out on top as the best long-term investment! That has not always been the case. Gallup explains: “Between 2008 and 2010, covering most of the Great Recession period that saw plummeting home and stock values, Americans were ...
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Boomerang Buyers: Don’t Be Afraid to Buy a Home Again!

Boomerang Buyers: Don’t Be Afraid to Buy a Home Again!

According to CoreLogic, from 2006 to 2014 “there were 7.3 million housing foreclosures and 1.9 million short sales.” The hesitation some Americans feel after experiencing a foreclosure brings to mind the old saying: “Fool me once- shame on you. Fool me twice- shame on me.” According to the 2019 Home Buyer Report from NerdWallet, “Thirteen percent of Americans have lost a home due to a financial event such as foreclosure in the past 10 years ...
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Are Older Generations Really Not Selling Their Homes?

Are Older Generations Really Not Selling Their Homes?

Many studies suggest one of the main reasons for the inventory shortage in today’s market of homes for sale is that older generations have chosen to “age in place” over moving. The 2019 Home Buyers & Sellers Generational Trend Report by NAR clarifies this point! NAR’s findings show that Baby Boomers (43%) and the Silent Generation (12%) made up 56% of sellers in 2018! This means the majority of sellers last year were over the ...
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Starting the Search for Your Dream Home? Here Are 5 Tips!

Starting the Search for Your Dream Home? Here Are 5 Tips!

In today’s real estate market, low inventory dominates the conversation in many areas of the country. It can often be frustrating to be a first-time homebuyer if you aren’t prepared. In a realtor.com article entitled, “How to Find Your Dream Home—Without Losing Your Mind,” the author highlights some steps that first-time homebuyers can take to help carry their excitement of buying a home throughout the whole process. 1. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage Before You Start Your Search One ...
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Top Days to List Your Home for Sale [INFOGRAPHIC]

Top Days to List Your Home for Sale [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: ATTOM Data Solutions conducted an analysis of more than 29 million single family home and condo sales over the past eight years to determine the top days to list your home for sale. The top five days to list your home brought in a 10% premium over market value and are all in either May or June! “Families start their home search when they know their kids will be out of school and ...
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What is Really Happening with Home Prices?

What is Really Happening with Home Prices?

Home values have softened over the last twelve months. We are no longer seeing 6-7% annual appreciation levels for the national housing market. The current numbers are closer to 4%. Some have suggested that year-over-year appreciation levels could fall to 3% or less this year. However, a stronger-than-expected economy and a good spring housing market have changed some opinions. Some analysts are now predicting that home value appreciation may begin to increase as we move ...
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4 Tips for Making a Competitive Offer

4 Tips for Making a Competitive Offer

So, you’ve been searching for that perfect house to call ‘home,’ and you’ve finally found it! The price is right, and in such a competitive market, you want to make sure you make a good offer so that you can guarantee that your dream of making this house yours comes true! Below are 4 steps provided by Freddie Mac to help buyers make offers, along with some additional information for your consideration: 1. Determine Your ...
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New Research Shows Housing Is Affordable For First-Time Buyers

New Research Shows Housing Is Affordable For First-Time Buyers

Home prices have been on the rise for the last seven years, leading many housing market analysts to conclude that first-time homebuyers are being shut out of the market due to affordability concerns. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reports on the percentage of First-Time Home Buyers (FTHB) on a monthly and yearly basis. Their latest report shows that FTHB’s made up 33% of buyers in March, which matches their reported share in 2018. NAR ...
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A Lack of Inventory Continues to Impact the Housing Market

A Lack of Inventory Continues to Impact the Housing Market

The housing crisis is finally in the rear-view mirror as the real estate market moves down the road to a complete recovery. Home values are up and distressed sales (foreclosures and short sales) have fallen to their lowest point in years. The market will continue to strengthen in 2019. However, there is one thing that may cause the industry to tap the brakes: a lack of housing inventory! Buyer demand naturally increases during the summer months, but ...
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Mainstream Concerns about an Economic Slowdown Revisited

Mainstream Concerns about an Economic Slowdown Revisited

Recently, we reported that many believe a recession could happen within the next two years. We explained that 70% of economists and market analysts surveyed last year believe that a recession will occur in 2019 or 2020 and that 42% of consumers currently looking to purchase a home also agree that a recession will occur this year or next. However, the U.S. economy has performed well in the first quarter of 2019 and that has ...
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The Benefits of a 20% Down Payment

The Benefits of a 20% Down Payment

If you are in the market to buy a home this year, you may be confused about how much money you need to come up with for your down payment. Many people you talk to will tell you that you need to save 20% or you won’t be able to secure a mortgage. The truth is that there are many programs available that let you put down as little as 3%. Those who have served ...
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Home Buyers are Optimistic About Homeownership!

Home Buyers are Optimistic About Homeownership!

When we consider buying an item, we naturally go through a research process prior to making our decision. We ask our friends and family members who have made similar purchases about their experience, we get opinions and insights, and we read reviews online. There’s no difference when considering a home purchase! Most homebuyers start by listening to the news to hear what is being said about the real estate market. They check with family and ...
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Why Access Is One of the Most Important Factors in Getting Your House Sold!

Why Access Is One of the Most Important Factors in Getting Your House Sold!

So, you’ve decided to sell your house. You’ve hired a real estate professional to help you through the entire process, and they have asked you what level of access you want to provide to your potential buyers. There are four elements to a quality listing. At the top of the list is access, followed by condition, financing, and price. There are many levels of access that you can provide to your agent so that he or she ...
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The Cost of Renting vs. Buying This Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Cost of Renting vs. Buying This Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Historically, the choice between renting or buying a home has been a tough decision. Looking at the percentage of income needed to rent a median-priced home today (27.7%) vs. the percentage needed to buy a median-priced home (17.5%), the choice becomes obvious. Every market is different. Before you renew your lease again, find out if you can put your housing costs to work by buying this year! Content previously posted on Keeping Current ...
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Your Fabulous New Dream Home is Now Available

Your Fabulous New Dream Home is Now Available

Over the last several years, many “baby boomers” have undergone a metamorphosis. Their children have finally moved out and they can now dream about their own future. For many, a change in lifestyle might necessitate a change in the type of home they live in. That two-story, four-bedroom colonial with three bathrooms no longer fits the bill. Taxes are too high. Utilities are too expensive. Cleaning and repair are too difficult. When they decide to ...
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2 Trends Helping Keep Housing Affordable

2 Trends Helping Keep Housing Affordable

Two positive trends have started to emerge that impact the 2019 Spring Housing Market. Mortgage interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate loan have dropped to new lows, right as reports show that wages have increased at their highest rate in decades! These two factors have helped keep housing affordable despite low supply of houses for sale driving up prices. First American’s Chief Economist, Mark Fleming, explains the impact, “Ongoing supply shortages remain the main ...
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What Would Make You Sell Your House?

What Would Make You Sell Your House?

There are many reasons why a homeowner decides to sell their house and move. The latest Generational Trends Report from the National Association of Realtors asked recent home sellers to share their reason for moving. The younger the respondents, the more likely their top response centered around needing a larger home (ages 29 to 53). Relocating for a job was the top reason for those ages 54 to 63 and the second most popular response ...
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How Quickly Can You Save Your Down Payment?

How Quickly Can You Save Your Down Payment?

Saving for a down payment is often the biggest hurdle for a first-time homebuyer. Depending on where you live, median income, median rents, and home prices all vary. So, we set out to find out how long it would take to save for a down payment in each state. Using data from HUD, Census and Apartment List, we determined how long it would take, nationwide, for a first-time buyer to save enough money for a down ...
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Existing Home Sales Slow to Start Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

Existing Home Sales Slow to Start Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Existing Home Sales slowed to an annual pace of 5.21 million home sales in March. Low inventory levels are still impacting home sales! The current month’s supply of homes for sale is 3.9-months. Median home prices were up 3.8% over last March at $259,400. This marked the 85th consecutive month with year-over-year price gains. Content previously posted on Keeping Current MattersPowered by WPeMatico ...
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Renters Paying Substantially More While Owning Costs Less

Renters Paying Substantially More While Owning Costs Less

In a recent Insights Blog, CoreLogic reported that rent prices have skyrocketed since 2005. Meanwhile, the typical mortgage payment has actually decreased. “CoreLogic’s national rent index was up 36% in December 2018 compared with December 2005, while the typical mortgage payment was down 4% over that period.” Why the difference between the costs of renting versus owning? It makes sense that rents have risen. However, how did mortgage payments decrease? CoreLogic explained: “It’s mainly because ...
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New Study Reveals One Surprising Reason for the Inventory Shortage

New Study Reveals One Surprising Reason for the Inventory Shortage

There has been a great amount written on millennials and their impact on the housing market. However, the headlines often contradict each other. Some claim this generation is becoming the largest share of first-time home buyers, while others claim millennials don’t want to own a home, blaming them for the dip in homeownership rate. While it is true that millennials have achieved milestones like getting married, having kids, and buying homes later in life than ...
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With Inventory Low: Will Your Dream Home Need Some TLC?

With Inventory Low: Will Your Dream Home Need Some TLC?

According to a new survey from Move.com, the wave of first-time homebuyers hitting the market this summer has resulted in an interesting statistic. Nearly 60% of buyers searching for a home this spring are willing to consider buying a fixer-upper, with 95% believing that the projects needed will increase their new home’s value! Realtor.com’s Chief Economist, Danielle Hale, pointed to low-inventory at the entry-level price range for the increase in willingness to renovate. “The combination ...
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Selling Your House: Here’s Why You Need A Pro In Your Corner!

Selling Your House: Here’s Why You Need A Pro In Your Corner!

With home prices on the rise and buyer demand still strong, some sellers may be tempted to try to sell their homes on their own rather than using the services of a real estate professional. Real estate agents are trained and experienced in negotiation while, in most cases, the seller is not. Sellers must realize that their ability to negotiate will determine whether or not they get the best deal for themselves and their families ...
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5 Reasons Why Millennials Buy a Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

5 Reasons Why Millennials Buy a Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: “The majority of millennials said they consider owning a home more sensible than renting for both financial and lifestyle reasons — including control of living space, flexibility in future decisions, privacy and security, and living in a nice home.” The top reason millennials choose to buy is to have control over their living space, at 93%. Many millennials who rent a home or apartment prior to buying their own homes dream of the ...
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Buyer Demand Surging as Spring Market Begins

Buyer Demand Surging as Spring Market Begins

Last fall, some predicted that the 2019 residential real estate market would be a disaster. There was even belief we might experience a housing crash like the one that occurred during the last decade. However, according to two separate reports*, buyer demand dramatically increased over the last three months, leading into this spring buyers’ market (the March data is not yet available). Both the ShowingTime Showing Index and the National Association of REALTORS Buyer Traffic ...
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Are Low Interest Rates Here to Stay?

Are Low Interest Rates Here to Stay?

Interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage have been on the decline since November, now reaching lows last seen in January 2018. According to Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey, rates came in at 4.12% last week! This is great news for anyone who is planning on buying a home this spring! Freddie Mac had this to say, “Mortgage interest rates have been steadily declining since the start of 2019. These lower mortgage ...
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Homeowners: Now Is A Good Time To Sell Your House

Homeowners: Now Is A Good Time To Sell Your House

Every month, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) releases their Seller Traffic Index as a part of their Realtors Confidence Index. In the latest release, NAR reported that homeowners have been reluctant to sell their houses. This is reflected when broken down by state. Only 11 states have a stable level of seller traffic compared to the remainder of the country, which came in with a weak rating. As we can see in the following ...
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3 Questions You Need To Ask Before Buying A Home

3 Questions You Need To Ask Before Buying A Home

If you are debating purchasing a home right now, you are probably getting a lot of advice. Though your friends and family have your best interests at heart, they may not be fully aware of your needs and what is currently happening in the real estate market. Ask yourself the following three questions to help determine if now is a good time for you to buy in today’s market. 1. Why am I buying a ...
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Slaying the Largest Homebuying Myths Today [INFOGRAPHIC]

Slaying the Largest Homebuying Myths Today [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The average down payment for first-time homebuyers is only 6%! Mortgage interest rates have been on the decline since November! Hop in now to lock in a low rate! 88% of property managers raised their rents in the last 12 months! The average credit score on approved loans continues to fall across many loan types!   Content previously posted on Keeping Current MattersPowered by WPeMatico ...
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Home Value Appreciation Stops Falling, Begins to Stabilize

Home Value Appreciation Stops Falling, Begins to Stabilize

The percentage of home price appreciation on a year-over-year basis has decreased each month for over a year. The question was how far annual appreciation would fall. It seems we may now have the answer. In a recent post on the National Association of Realtors’ Economists’ Outlook Blog, it was revealed that Realtors are starting to sense that home values are beginning to stabilize and that we may see appreciation beginning to accelerate again: “About ...
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Home Buyer Demand Will Be Strong for Years to Come

Home Buyer Demand Will Be Strong for Years to Come

There has been a lot written about millennials and their preference to live in city centers above their favorite pizza place. Some have even gone so far as to say that millennials are a “Renter-Generation”. And while this might be true for some millennials, more and more research has surfaced that shows for the vast majority, owning a home is a major part of their American Dream! New research shows that 66% of millennials who ...
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Why Pet-Friendly Homes Are in High Demand

Why Pet-Friendly Homes Are in High Demand

One of the many benefits of owning your own home is the freedom to find your ‘furever’ friend. By pointing out the aspects of your home that make it ‘pet-friendly’ in your listing, you’ll attract these buyers, rather than alienating the 68% of American households that have a pet! If you are one of the many homeowners looking to list your home for sale, how do you stand out to the millions of pet parents ...
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What to Consider When Choosing Your Home To Retire In

What to Consider When Choosing Your Home To Retire In

As more and more baby boomers enter retirement age, the question of whether they should sell their homes and move has become a hot topic. In today’s housing market climate, with low available inventory in the starter and trade-up home categories, it makes sense to evaluate your home’s ability to adapt to your needs in retirement. According to the National Association of Exclusive Buyers Agents (NAEBA), there are 7 factors that you should consider when ...
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Your Home’s Spring Maintenance Checklist [INFOGRAPHIC]

Your Home’s Spring Maintenance Checklist [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Every spring, your home needs some extra TLC! Whether you plan on selling your home this spring or not, conducting this maintenance will help ensure your home functions well for the rest of the year. If you need help finding professionals who can assist you with this checklist, we can provide you with a list of preferred contractors & vendors! Content previously posted on Keeping Current MattersPowered by WPeMatico ...
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3 Graphs that Show What You Need to Know About Today’s Real Estate Market

3 Graphs that Show What You Need to Know About Today’s Real Estate Market

The Housing Market has been a hot-topic in the news lately. Depending on which media outlet you watch, it can start to be a bit confusing to understand what’s really going on with interest rates and home prices! The best way to show what’s really going on in today’s real estate market is to go straight to the data! We put together the following three graphs along with a quote from Chief Economists that have ...
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Looking to Upgrade Your Current Home? Now’s the Time to Move-Up!

Looking to Upgrade Your Current Home? Now’s the Time to Move-Up!

In every area of the country, homes that are priced at the top 25% of the price range for that area are considered to be Premium Homes. In today’s real estate market there are deals to be had at the higher end! This is great news for homeowners who want to upgrade from their current house and move-up to a premium home. Much of the demand for housing over the past couple years has come ...
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Homebuyers Shouldn’t Worry About 2008 All Over Again

Homebuyers Shouldn’t Worry About 2008 All Over Again

Last week, realtor.com released a survey of active home shoppers (those who plan to purchase their next home in 1 year or less). The survey asked their opinion on an impending recession and its possible impact on the housing market. Two major takeaways from the survey: 42% believe a recession will occur this year or next (another 16% said 2021) 59% believe the housing market would fare the same or worse than it did in ...
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5 Reasons To Sell Your House This Spring!

5 Reasons To Sell Your House This Spring!

Here are five compelling reasons listing your home for sale this spring makes sense. 1. Demand Is Strong The latest Buyer Traffic Index from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing, and able to purchase… and are in the market right now! More often than not, multiple buyers are competing with each other for the same home. Take ...
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10 Steps to Buying a Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

10 Steps to Buying a Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: If you are thinking of buying a home, you may not know where to start. Here is a simple list of 10 steps that you will go through to purchase a home. Make sure to ask your agent for details about each step and what else may be required in your area! Content previously posted on Keeping Current MattersPowered by WPeMatico ...
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How to Put Your Housing Cost to Work for You

How to Put Your Housing Cost to Work for You

There has been a lot written about the benefits of homeownership. One benefit that continues to rise to the top is the added wealth homeowners gain simply by paying their mortgage while their home increases in value over time. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently broke down the equity gained from price appreciation and principal payments in their Economists Outlook Blog. Homeowners who purchased their homes five years ago have already gained almost $80,000 ...
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Data Says April is the Best Month to List Your Home for Sale

Data Says April is the Best Month to List Your Home for Sale

The spring housing market is off to the races! The inventory of homes for sale is increasing, buyers are out in force, and interest rates have remained low, piquing the interest of buyers and sellers previously on the fence about making a move. New research from realtor.com shows that the first week of April is actually the best time to list your house for sale! The report used “trends in median listing prices, views per ...
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The Enormous Divide Between the Headline and the Truth

The Enormous Divide Between the Headline and the Truth

“I have observed that not the man who hopes when others despair, but the man who despairs when others hope, is admired by a large class of persons as a sage.” – John Stuart Mill (1840s) Even back in the mid-1800s, people knew that negative news sells. That is still true today. All forms of media realize that they will get more eyeballs, clicks, likes, and engagement by posting something negative. However, they must realize ...
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Your Tax Refund Is The Key To Homeownership!

Your Tax Refund Is The Key To Homeownership!

According to data released by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Americans can expect an estimated average refund of $3,143 this year when filing their taxes. This is down slightly from the average refund of $3,436 last year. Tax refunds are often thought of as ‘extra money’ that can be used toward larger goals. For anyone looking to buy a home in 2019, this can be a great jump start toward a down payment! The map below shows the average ...
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Is Your House Priced To Sell Immediately (PTSI)?

Is Your House Priced To Sell Immediately (PTSI)?

In today’s real estate market, with more houses coming to market every day and eager buyers searching for their dream home, setting the right price for your house is one of the most important things you can do. According to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index, home values have risen at over 6% a year over the past two years, but have started to slow to 4.4% over the last 12 months. By this time next ...
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Do 46 Million Millennials Know They Are Mortgage Ready?

Do 46 Million Millennials Know They Are Mortgage Ready?

Many have written about the millennial generation and whether or not they, as a whole, believe in homeownership as part of attaining the American Dream. Millennials have taken longer to obtain traditional milestones than the generations before them, such as getting married, having kids, and buying a home. However, that does not mean that they do not still aspire to achieve those things. History shows that people tend to buy their first home around age ...
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What Credit Score Do You Need To Buy A House?

What Credit Score Do You Need To Buy A House?

There are many misconceptions about the credit score needed to buy a house. Recently, it was reported that 24% of renters believe they need a 780-800 credit score to be considered for a mortgage. The reality is they are misinformed! Only 25% of the Americans have a FICO® Score between 740 and 800. Here is the breakdown according to Experian: 16% Very Poor (300-579) 18% Fair (580-669) 21% Good (670-739) 25% Very Good (740-799) 20% ...
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Want To Increase Your Family’s Wealth? Here’s How!

Want To Increase Your Family’s Wealth? Here’s How!

Everyone should realize that unless you are living somewhere rent-free, you are paying a mortgage – either yours or your landlord’s. Buying your own home provides you with a form of ‘forced savings’ that allows you to use your monthly housing costs to increase your family’s wealth. Every month that you pay your mortgage, you are paying off a portion of the debt that you took on to purchase your home. Therefore, you own a little bit more of ...
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Don’t Let Your Luck Run Out! Buy A Home This Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

Don’t Let Your Luck Run Out! Buy A Home This Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Interest Rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage have dropped to 4.41% from near 5% in 2018. Take advantage of more inventory coming to market in the spring to find your dream home! Buying now will allow you to start earning equity today! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Homeownership is a Cornerstone of the American Dream

Homeownership is a Cornerstone of the American Dream

“The rumors of my death are greatly exaggerated.” The famous quote attributed to Mark Twain can apply to homeownership in the United States today. During the housing bubble of the last decade, the homeownership rate soared to over sixty-nine percent. After the crash, that percentage continued to fall for the next ten years. That led to speculation that homeownership was no longer seen as a major component of the American Dream. That belief became so ...
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7 Things To Avoid After Applying for a Mortgage!

7 Things To Avoid After Applying for a Mortgage!

Congratulations! You’ve found a home to buy and have applied for a mortgage! You are undoubtedly excited about the opportunity to decorate your new home! But before you make any big purchases, move any money around, or make any big-time life changes, consult your loan officer. They will be able to tell you how your decision will impact your home loan. Below is a list of 7 Things You Shouldn’t Do After Applying for a ...
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What’s Going On with Bidding Wars?

What’s Going On with Bidding Wars?

In a strong seller’s market, like the one we have experienced over the past few years, bidding wars are common and expected. This makes sense! A seller’s market is defined as a market in which the inventory of homes for sale cannot satisfy the number of buyers who want to purchase a home. According to the Cambridge English Dictionary, bidding wars occur when two or more parties repeatedly outbid each other as they compete to ...
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4 Reasons to Buy a Home in the Spring

4 Reasons to Buy a Home in the Spring

Spring has sprung, and it’s a great time to buy a home! Here are four reasons to consider buying today instead of waiting. 1. Prices Will Continue to Rise CoreLogic’s latest U.S. Home Price Insights reports that home prices have appreciated by 4.4% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts that prices will continue to increase at a rate of 4.6% over the next year. Home values will continue to appreciate for years ...
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Preparing to Spring Forward [INFOGRAPHIC]

Preparing to Spring Forward [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: In the majority of the country, this weekend marks the start of Daylight Savings Time as we set our clocks forward an hour on Sunday at 2:00 AM EST. Whether you plan on buying or selling this spring, these tips could help you ‘spring ahead’ of your competition! Spring brings two things: more buyers & more sellers! Get prepared now to stand out in the crowd! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Why an Economic Slowdown Will NOT Crush Real Estate this Time

Why an Economic Slowdown Will NOT Crush Real Estate this Time

Last week, the National Association for Business Economics released their February 2019 Economic Policy Survey. The survey revealed that a majority of the panel believe an economic slowdown is in the near future: “While only 10% of panelists expect a recession in 2019, 42% say a recession will happen in 2020, and 25% expect one in 2021.” Their findings coincide with three previous surveys calling for a slowdown sometime in the next two years: The ...
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2 Reports That Say Now Is a Great Time to Sell

2 Reports That Say Now Is a Great Time to Sell

Heading into the spring buying market, there are strong trends starting to emerge. The inventory of homes for sale has increased on a year-over-year basis for eight months in a row. Home price appreciation has continued to grow, although at a slower rate. The homeownership rate has reached heights last seen in 2014, with millennials and Generation X leading the way! Let’s dive a little deeper into some of the recent reports that have been ...
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How to Have a Unique Open House

How to Have a Unique Open House

According to the National Association of Realtors, total inventory has been growing for six months straight, as has the number of buyers looking to find their dream home. In a market where inventory is increasing, you want to stand out in the crowd! This quote from Grandscope puts it well: “You can differentiate from competition by WOWing or exciting customers, not just trying to compete on price.” What better way than to be creative with ...
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The Housing Market Will “Spring Forward” This Year!

The Housing Market Will “Spring Forward” This Year!

Just like our clocks this weekend, in the majority of the country, the housing market will soon “spring forward!” Similar to tension in a spring, the lack of inventory available for sale has been holding back the market. Many potential sellers believe that waiting until Spring is in their best interest. Traditionally, they would have been right. Buyer demand has seasonality to it. Usually, this falls off in the winter months, especially in areas of the country impacted by ...
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Home Prices Up 5.73% Across the Country! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Home Prices Up 5.73% Across the Country! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) recently released their latest Quarterly Home Price Index report. In the report, home prices are compared both regionally and by state. Based on the latest numbers, if you plan on relocating to another state, waiting to move may end up costing you more! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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No Worries… Home Prices Coming in for a SOFT Landing

No Worries… Home Prices Coming in for a SOFT Landing

Home prices have appreciated considerably over the last five years. This has some concerned that we may be in for another dramatic correction. However, recent statistics suggest home values will not crash as they did a decade ago. Instead, this time they will come in for a soft landing. The previous housing market was fueled by an artificial demand created by mortgage standards that were far too lenient. When this demand was shut off, a ...
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Interest Rates Hit New 12 Month Low!

Interest Rates Hit New 12 Month Low!

According to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage are currently at their lowest for 2019. Rates like these haven’t been seen since February 2018! Last week’s survey results reported an interest rate of 4.35%. This is a welcome change from the near 5% rates seen in mid-November. At 4.32%, the second week of February 2018 was the last time rates were this low. This can be seen ...
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What are the Benefits of Becoming a Homeowner?

What are the Benefits of Becoming a Homeowner?

Every family has a list of important dates. We celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, pet adoptions…and the list goes on. For 64.4 percent of households in the United States, this list includes the day they became a homeowner for the first time! Why is this date important? Homeownership is not just a roof over your head! It represents shelter, stability, wealth, and pride! For decades, homeownership has been an important part of the American Dream! However, many ...
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How Can I Increase My Family’s Net Worth?

How Can I Increase My Family’s Net Worth?

Every three years, the Federal Reserve conducts their Survey of Consumer Finances. Data is collected across all economic and social groups. The latest survey data covers 2013-2016. The study revealed that the median net worth of a homeowner is $231,400 – a 15% increase since 2013. At the same time, the median net worth of renters decreased by 5% ($5,200 today compared to $5,500 in 2013). These numbers reveal that the net worth of a ...
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3 Tips for Making Your Dream of Buying A Home Come True [INFOGRAPHIC]

3 Tips for Making Your Dream of Buying A Home Come True [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Setting up an automatic savings plan that saves a small amount of every check is one of the best ways to save without thinking too much about it. Living within a budget right now will help you save money for down payments while also paying down other debts that might be holding you back. What are you willing to cut back on to make your dreams of homeownership a reality? Powered by WPeMatico ...
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3 Reasons Why We Are Not Heading Toward Another Housing Crash

3 Reasons Why We Are Not Heading Toward Another Housing Crash

With home prices softening, some are concerned that we may be headed toward the next housing crash. However, it is important to remember that today’s market is quite different than the bubble market of twelve years ago. Here are three key metrics that will explain why: Home Prices Mortgage Standards Foreclosure Rates HOME PRICES A decade ago, home prices depreciated dramatically, losing about 29% of their value over a four-year period (2008-2011). Today, prices are ...
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Why A Normal Market is Just What We Need

Why A Normal Market is Just What We Need

The housing market has been hot for a while now. Homes have been flying off the shelves as fast as they have been listed. Buyers have been competing in bidding wars just to find a home to buy, let alone find their dream home. This ‘seller’s market’ has driven home prices to new heights. Home price appreciation averaged over 6% across the country. However, home price growth has recently started to cool down. The latest ...
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2019 Will Be a Great Year for Buyers AND Sellers

2019 Will Be a Great Year for Buyers AND Sellers

Many homeowners believe that rising interest rates and home prices have scared away buyers and therefore have not listed their houses for sale. However, the truth is that buyers who were unable to find a home last year are out in force, and there are even more coming! NerdWallet’s 2018 Home Buyer Report revealed that: “Approximately one-third (32%) of Americans plan to purchase a home in the next five years. Millennials are most likely to ...
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Millionaire To Millennials: Don’t Get Stuck Renting A Home… Buy One!

Millionaire To Millennials: Don’t Get Stuck Renting A Home… Buy One!

In a CNBC article, self-made millionaire David Bach explained that: “The biggest mistake millennials are making is not buying their first home.” He goes on to say that, “If you want to build real financial security, real wealth for your lifetime, then you need to buy a home.” Bach went on to explain: “Homeowners are worth 40 times more than renters. Now, that first home doesn’t need to be a dream home, it can be ...
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Where Did Americans Move in 2018? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Where Did Americans Move in 2018? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Every year United Van Lines conducts their National Movers Study by tracking their customer’s movement state-to-state over the course of the year. Vermont claimed the top spot of states with the highest percentage of inbound residents following a campaign that covered relocation costs for skilled workers who moved to the state. The most common response for why someone relocated to another state was for a new job or company transfer. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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First Comes Love… Then Comes Mortgage? Couples Lead the Way

First Comes Love… Then Comes Mortgage? Couples Lead the Way

According to the National Association of REALTORS most recent Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, married couples once again dominated the first-time homebuyer statistics in 2018 at 54% of all buyers. It is no surprise that buying a home is more attainable with two incomes to save for down payments and contribute to monthly housing costs. However, many couples are also deciding to buy a home before spending what would be a down payment on a wedding. Last year, ...
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Why Homeownership Matters Now More Than Ever

Why Homeownership Matters Now More Than Ever

Study after study shows that no matter what generation Americans belong to, the vast majority believe that homeownership is an important part of their American Dream. The benefits of homeownership can be broken into two main categories: financial and non-financial (often referred to as emotional or social reasons.) For Americans approaching retirement age, one of the greatest benefits to homeownership is the added net worth they have been able to achieve simply by paying their ...
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How To List Your Home for the Best Price

How To List Your Home for the Best Price

If your plan for 2019 includes selling your home, you will want to pay attention to where experts believe home values are headed. According to the latest Home Price Index from CoreLogic, home prices increased by 4.7% over the course of 2018. The map below shows the results of the latest index by state. Real estate is local. Each state appreciates at different levels. The majority of the country saw at least a 2.0% gain ...
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Thinking of Selling Your House? This is a Perfect Time!

Thinking of Selling Your House? This is a Perfect Time!

It is common knowledge that a great number of homes sell during the spring buying season. For that reason, many homeowners hold off putting their homes on the market until then. The question is whether or not that is a good strategy this year. The other listings that come out in the spring will represent increased competition to any seller. Do a greater number of homes actually come to the market during this season in ...
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5 Reasons to Love Hiring A Real Estate Pro [INFOGRAPHIC]

5 Reasons to Love Hiring A Real Estate Pro [INFOGRAPHIC]

Highlights: Hiring a real estate professional to guide you through the process of buying a home or selling your house can be one of the best decisions you make! They are there for you to help with contracts, explaining the process, negotiations, and pricing (both when making an offer or setting the right price for your home). One of the top reasons to hire a real estate professional is their understanding of your local market ...
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How to Get a Better Perspective on Affordability

How to Get a Better Perspective on Affordability

Headlines spotlight the fact that buying a home is less affordable today than it was at any other time in more than a decade. Those headlines are accurate. Understandably, buying a home is more expensive now than immediately following one of the worst housing crashes in American history. Over the past decade, the market was flooded with distressed properties (foreclosures and short sales) selling at 10-50% discounts. There were so many that this lowered the ...
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The KonMari Method: Helping You Prep Your House For Sale

The KonMari Method: Helping You Prep Your House For Sale

One of the biggest challenges sellers face when listing their house is decluttering. Cleaning out some of the more personal decorating choices allows buyers to imagine themselves living in the house. Those planning to sell soon are in luck! Marie Kondo, the inventor of the KonMari Method of Tidying Up, has gained popularity with her new Netflix series. She gives some great tips for sorting through years of accumulated possessions that we all collect in ...
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One More Time… You Do Not Need 20% Down to Buy a Home

One More Time… You Do Not Need 20% Down to Buy a Home

The largest obstacle renters face when planning to buy a home is saving for a down payment. This challenge is amplified by rising rents, which has eaten into the amount of money renters have leftover for savings each month after paying expenses. In combination with higher rents, survey after survey has shown that non-homeowners (renters and those living rent-free with family or friends) believe they need to save upwards of 20% for their down payment! ...
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Whose Mortgage Do You Want to Pay? Yours or Your Landlord’s?

Whose Mortgage Do You Want to Pay? Yours or Your Landlord’s?

There are some people who haven’t purchased homes because they are uncomfortable taking on the obligation of a mortgage. However, everyone should realize that unless you are living with your parents rent-free, you are paying a mortgage – either yours or your landlord’s. As Entrepreneur Magazine, a premier source for small business explained in their article, “12 Practical Steps to Getting Rich”: “While renting on a temporary basis isn’t terrible, you should most certainly own ...
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5 Reasons Homeowners Throw the Best Super Bowl Parties! [INFOGRAPHIC]

5 Reasons Homeowners Throw the Best Super Bowl Parties! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Highlights: Watching the big game at home with your friends & family offers many advantages. There’s more room to entertain a large crowd, and you don’t have to worry about complaints to your landlord if you cheer too loudly! The kitchen is big enough to make as many appetizers as you want, and if some of your guests are only there to watch the commercials, they can do so on a different TV in another ...
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Do You Know How Much Your Home Has Increased in Value?

Do You Know How Much Your Home Has Increased in Value?

Last year we saw headlines about a possible housing market bubble, and many wondered if Americans still felt confident about the value of their homes. Recently, the 2018 Houzz & Home Study revealed: “Homeowners with mortgages have seen their home equity more than double since 2011, increasing to a record-setting $8.3 trillion in 2017.” The average homeowner gained $16,200 in home equity between Q2 2017 and Q2 2018 according to the latest release of CoreLogic’s ...
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4 Proven Ways Real Estate Can Build Sizable Family Wealth

4 Proven Ways Real Estate Can Build Sizable Family Wealth

Recently, David Greene, co-host of the BiggerPockets podcast and a nationally renowned author and speaker, wrote an article in Forbes explaining how investing in real estate could help build wealth. Many of the points he made also apply to a family owning their own home. Here are a few: 1. Appreciation “The rising of home prices over time, is how the majority of wealth is built in real estate. This is the ‘home run’ you ...
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Is Student Loan Debt A Threat to Homeownership? No!

Is Student Loan Debt A Threat to Homeownership? No!

Over the course of the last thirty years, a shift has happened. An entire generation has been raised to believe that a college education is their key to unlocking opportunities that were not available to their parent’s or grandparent’s generations. Due to this, student loan debt has soared to $1.5 trillion and represents the largest category of debt, surpassing credit card and auto loan debt in 2010 and never looking back. As more and more ...
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Why It Makes No Sense to Wait for Spring to Sell

Why It Makes No Sense to Wait for Spring to Sell

The price of any item (including residential real estate) is determined by the theory of ‘supply and demand.’ If many people are looking to buy an item and the supply of that item is limited, the price of that item increases. The supply of homes for sale dramatically increases every spring, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). As an example, here is what happened to housing inventory at the beginning of 2018: Putting your home on ...
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Think You Should For Sale By Owner? Think Again! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Think You Should For Sale By Owner? Think Again! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: For Sale By Owner (FSBO) is the process of selling real estate without the representation of a real estate broker or real estate agent. According to the National Association of Realtors’ Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, 36% of homeowners who decided to FSBO last year did so to avoid paying a commission or fee. But, homes sold with an agent net 6% more than those sold as a FSBO according to Collateral ...
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3 Things You Need in a Shifting Real Estate Market

3 Things You Need in a Shifting Real Estate Market

Whether you are thinking of selling your house or buying a home, today’s real estate headlines can be confusing – perhaps even concerning. What is actually happening with mortgage rates? Are home values dropping or are they just rising at a slower pace? What impact will the economy have on the housing market? If you are either a buyer or seller (or both), you need to know what it will mean to your family if ...
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The Importance of Homeownership to the American Dream

The Importance of Homeownership to the American Dream

For centuries, people in this country have seen homeownership as part of the American Dream. Whether they were born here or immigrated from another country, they wanted to own a piece of America. With so many prominent societal changes over the last few decades, it is fair to ask if people in America still feel the same way about owning a home. The answer was made abundantly clear in two separate reports released earlier this ...
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Do You Prefer the Charm of an Existing Home?

Do You Prefer the Charm of an Existing Home?

When homebuyers begin their research, they want to see all their available options! In many cases, they will include both new construction and existing homes in their search; but is a new construction home really the house of their dreams? According to a recent survey by Zillow, of the 38% of total buyers that added new construction to their list, only 11% ultimately purchased a newly constructed home! They added that 71% of these buyers ...
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The Difference Having a Professional on Your Side Makes

The Difference Having a Professional on Your Side Makes

In today’s fast-paced world, where answers are a Google search away, there are some who may wonder what the benefits of hiring a real estate professional to help them in their home search are. The truth is, with the addition of more information, comes more confusion. Shows like Property Brothers, Fixer Upper and the dozens more on HGTV have given many a false sense of what it’s like to buy and sell a home. Now ...
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What is the Cost of Waiting Until Next Year to Buy? [INFOGRAPHIC]

What is the Cost of Waiting Until Next Year to Buy? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The cost of waiting to buy is defined as the additional funds it would take to buy a home if prices & interest rates were to increase over a period of time. Freddie Mac predicts interest rates to rise to 5.1% by the end of 2019. CoreLogic predicts home prices to appreciate by 4.8% over the next 12 months. If you are ready and willing to buy your dream home, find out if ...
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Last Chance! Homes are a Bargain Compared to Historic Norms

Last Chance! Homes are a Bargain Compared to Historic Norms

A loaf of bread used to be a nickel. A movie ticket was a dime.  Not anymore. Houses were also much less expensive than they are now. Inflation raised the price of all three of those items, along with the price of almost every other item we purchase. The reason we can still afford to consume is that our wages have also risen over time. The better measure of whether an item is more expensive ...
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Selling Your Home? Make Sure the Price is Right!

Selling Your Home? Make Sure the Price is Right!

If you’ve ever watched “The Price is Right,” you know that the only way to win is to be the one to correctly guess the price of the item you want without going over! That means your guess must be just slightly under the retail price. In today’s shifting real estate market, where more inventory is coming to market and home values are projected to appreciate at lower rates, homeowners will not be able to ...
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Buying a Home Young is the Key to Building Wealth

Buying a Home Young is the Key to Building Wealth

Homeowners who purchase their homes before the age of 35 are better prepared for retirement at age 60, according to a new Urban Institute study. The organization surveyed adults who turned 60 or 61 between 2003 and 2015 for their data set. “Today’s older adults became homeowners at a younger age than today’s young adults. Half the older adults in our sample bought their first house when they were between 25 and 34 years old, ...
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Buying a House This Year? This Should Be Your 1st Step!

Buying a House This Year? This Should Be Your 1st Step!

In many markets across the country, the number of buyers searching for their dream homes outnumbers the number of homes for sale. This has led to a competitive marketplace where buyers often need to stand out. One way to show that you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search. Even if you are not in an incredibly competitive market, understanding your budget will give ...
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The Cost Across Time [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Cost Across Time [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: With interest rates still around 4.5%, now is a great time to look back at where rates have been over the last 40 years. Rates are projected to climb to 5.0% by this time next year according to Freddie Mac. The impact your interest rate makes on your monthly mortgage cost is significant! Lock in a low rate now while you can! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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The Best Time to List Your House? TODAY!

The Best Time to List Your House? TODAY!

You may have heard that the housing market is softening. There is no doubt that buyer traffic has decreased. There are fewer purchasers in the market than there were last month and at this time last year. What you may not have heard, however, is that there is still a severe shortage of listing inventory in many regions of the country. In a recent interview discussing the housing market, First American’s Chief Economist Mark Fleming ...
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Is the Recent Dip in Interest Rates Here to Stay?

Is the Recent Dip in Interest Rates Here to Stay?

Interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage climbed consistently throughout 2018 until the middle of November. After that point, rates returned to levels that we saw in August to close out the year at 4.55%, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey. After the first week of 2019, rates have continued their downward trend. As Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist Sam Khater notes, this is great news for homebuyers. He states, “Mortgage rates declined ...
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Buying A Vacation Property? Now Is A Good Time!

Buying A Vacation Property? Now Is A Good Time!

Every year around this time, many homeowners begin the process of preparing their homes in case of extreme winter weather. Some others skip winter all together by escaping to their vacation homes in a warmer climate. For those homeowners staying at their first residence, AccuWeather warns: “The late-week cold shot should fade next week, but this is a warning shot for winter’s return late in the month and early February.” Given this, it’s time to ...
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Want to Get the Most Money from The Sale of Your Home? Use These 2 Tips!

Want to Get the Most Money from The Sale of Your Home? Use These 2 Tips!

Every homeowner wants to make sure they maximize their financial reward when selling their home. But how do you guarantee that you receive the maximum value for your house? Here are two keys to ensure that you get the highest price possible. 1. Price it a LITTLE LOW  This may seem counterintuitive, but let’s look at this concept for a moment. Many homeowners think that pricing their homes a little OVER market value will leave ...
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Top Renovations to Complete Before You Sell Your House [INFOGRAPHIC]

Top Renovations to Complete Before You Sell Your House [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: If you are planning on listing your house for sale this year, here are the top four home improvement projects that will net you the most Return on Investment (ROI). Minor bathroom renovations can go a long way toward improving the quality of your everyday life and/or impressing potential buyers. Upgrading your landscaping or curb appeal helps get buyers in the door. These upgrades rank as the 2nd and 4th best renovations for ...
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Belief in Homeownership as an Investment is Far from Dead

Belief in Homeownership as an Investment is Far from Dead

Following last year’s real estate market was like riding a rollercoaster. The market started off strong in 2018 and then softened before finishing with a mild flurry. However, one thing that did not waiver was America’s belief that owning a home makes sense from a financial standpoint. An end-of-the-year survey by the Federal Reserve Bank’s Center for Microeconomic Data revealed that: “The majority of households continue to view housing as a good financial investment.” And that ...
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Excited About Buying A Home This Year? Here’s What to Watch

Excited About Buying A Home This Year? Here’s What to Watch

As we kick off the new year, many families have made resolutions to enter the housing market in 2019. Whether you are thinking of finally ditching your landlord and buying your first home or selling your starter house to move into your forever home, there are two pieces of the real estate puzzle you need to watch carefully: interest rates & inventory. Interest Rates Mortgage interest rates had been on the rise for much of ...
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Here’s to a Wonderful 2019!

Here’s to a Wonderful 2019!

We hope 2019 is a great year for you, both personally and professionally!Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Why You Should Not For Sale By Owner

Why You Should Not For Sale By Owner

In today’s market, as home prices rise and a lack of inventory continues, some homeowners may consider trying to sell their homes on their own, known in the industry as a For Sale by Owner (FSBO). There are several reasons why this might not be a good idea for most sellers. Here are the top five reasons: 1. Exposure to Prospective Buyers According to NAR’s 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, 95% of buyers searched online for ...
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Where is the Housing Market Headed in 2019? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Where is the Housing Market Headed in 2019? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: ­Interest rates are projected to increase steadily throughout 2019, but buyers will still be able to lock in a rate lower than their parents or grandparents did when they bought their homes! Home prices will rise at a rate of 4.8% over the course of 2019 according to CoreLogic. All four major reporting agencies believe that home sales will outpace 2018! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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24 Hours that Suddenly Improved the Market

24 Hours that Suddenly Improved the Market

This year started strong for real estate, but then the market began to soften. Home inventory in the starter and move-up categories dwindled to almost nothing, mortgage rates were projected to rise, and home sales had decreased for several months in a row. To many, the outlook heading into 2019 appeared dim… at best. Then, in a 24-hour window last week, things seemed to change. On Wednesday, the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) revealed in their Existing Homes ...
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How to Save Thousands of Dollars in Interest on Your Mortgage

How to Save Thousands of Dollars in Interest on Your Mortgage

One of the most common loans you can get to buy a home is a 30-year fixed rate mortgage. If the thought of paying for your home over the course of 30-years seems daunting, here are some easy ways to shorten that term which will actually end up saving you money over the life of your loan. Any additional payments to the principal amount (the original sum of money borrowed in a loan), helps to ...
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What Makes a House a Home For You?

What Makes a House a Home For You?

We frequently talk about why it makes sense to buy a home financially, but more often than not the emotional reasons are the more powerful or compelling ones. No matter what shape or size your living space is, the concept and feeling of a home can mean different things to different people. Whether it’s a certain scent or a favorite chair, the emotional reasons why we choose to buy our own homes are typically more ...
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Buyers Are Looking for Your Home, Now [INFOGRAPHIC]

Buyers Are Looking for Your Home, Now [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Existing home sales are currently at an annual pace of 5.32 million and have increased on a monthly basis for the last two months. The inventory of existing homes for sale remains below the 6-months needed for a normal market and is now at a 3.9-month supply. Inventory remains low due to high demand from buyers who are still looking for houses to buy! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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4 Quick Reasons NOT to Fear a Housing Crash

4 Quick Reasons NOT to Fear a Housing Crash

There is a lot of uncertainty regarding the real estate market heading into 2019. That uncertainty has raised concerns that we may be headed toward another housing crash like the one we experienced a decade ago. Here are four reasons why today’s market is much different: 1. There are fewer foreclosures now than there were in 2006 A major challenge in 2006 was the number of foreclosures. There will always be foreclosures, but they spiked ...
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Homeownership Remains a Huge Part of the American Dream

Homeownership Remains a Huge Part of the American Dream

As we head into 2019, many news outlets and housing experts warn that the housing market may slow down. Over the last six years, the inventory of homes for sale has been near historic lows, which has been the force behind increasing home prices. This has been great news for sellers as many of them have been able to capitalize on the demand in the market and sell their homes quickly and at a great ...
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Why Houses DO NOT Sell in a Strong Market

Why Houses DO NOT Sell in a Strong Market

As we approach the end of the year, many homeowners find themselves asking the question, “If we’re currently in a strong real estate market, why won’t my house sell?” Below are the 5 most common reasons why a listing contract will expire: 1. The Price Sometimes when the market is hot, homeowners attempt to set their listing price higher. Their hope is that a motivated buyer will be willing to pay any price for a ...
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5 Reasons to Sell This Winter!

5 Reasons to Sell This Winter!

Here are five reasons listing your home for sale this winter makes sense.  1. Demand Is Strong The latest Buyer Traffic Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing and able to purchase… and are in the market right now! More often than not, multiple buyers are competing with each other to buy a home. Take advantage of the buyer activity ...
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4 Reasons to Sell Your House This Winter [INFOGRAPHIC]

4 Reasons to Sell Your House This Winter [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Buyer demand continues to outpace the supply of homes for sale which means that buyers are often competing with one another for the few listings that are available! Housing inventory is still under the 6-month supply needed to sustain a normal housing market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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No Bubble Here! How New Mortgage Standards Are Helping

No Bubble Here! How New Mortgage Standards Are Helping

Real estate is shifting to a more normal market; the days of national home appreciation topping 6% annually are over and inventories are increasing which is causing bidding wars to almost disappear. Some see these as signs that the market will soon come tumbling down as it did in 2008. As it becomes easier for buyers to obtain mortgages, many are suggesting that this is definite proof that banks are repeating the same mistakes they ...
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Don’t Get Caught in the Rental Trap in 2019

Don’t Get Caught in the Rental Trap in 2019

Every year around this time, we take time to reflect and plan for next year. If you are renting your current home but have dreams of homeownership, your plan for the new year may include buying, and you wouldn’t be alone! According to the 2018 Bank of America Homebuyer Insights Report, 74% of renters plan on buying in the next 5 years, with 38% planning to buy in the next 2 years! When those same ...
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How to Simply Increase Your Family Wealth by Paying for Housing

How to Simply Increase Your Family Wealth by Paying for Housing

Everyone should realize that unless you are living somewhere rent-free, you are paying a mortgage – either yours or your landlord’s. Buying your own home provides you with a form of ‘forced savings’ that allows you to use your monthly housing costs to increase your family’s wealth. Every month that you pay your mortgage, you are paying off a portion of the debt that you took on to purchase your home. Therefore, you own a ...
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What If I Wait A Year to Buy a Home?

What If I Wait A Year to Buy a Home?

National home prices have increased by 5.4% since this time last year. Over that same time period, interest rates have remained near historic lows which has allowed many buyers to enter the market and lock in low rates. As a seller, you will likely be most concerned about ‘short-term price’ – where home values are headed over the next six months. As a buyer, however, you must not be concerned about price but instead about the ‘long-term cost’ of ...
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The Tale of Two Markets [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Tale of Two Markets [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: An emerging trend for some time now has been the difference between available inventory and demand in the premium and luxury markets and that in the starter and trade-up markets and what those differences are doing to prices! Inventory continues to rise in the luxury and premium home markets which is causing prices to cool. Demand continues to rise with lower-than-normal inventory levels in the starter and trade-up home markets, causing prices to ...
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2008 vs. Now: Are Owners Using Their Homes as ATMs Again?

2008 vs. Now: Are Owners Using Their Homes as ATMs Again?

Over the last six years, we have experienced strong price appreciation which has increased home equity levels dramatically. As the number of “cash-out” refinances begins to approach numbers last seen during the crash, some are afraid that we may be repeating last decade’s mistake. However, a closer look at the numbers shows that homeowners are being much more responsible with their home equity this time around. What happened then… When real estate values began to ...
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Where Are Interest Rates Headed in 2019?

Where Are Interest Rates Headed in 2019?

The interest rate you pay on your home mortgage has a direct impact on your monthly payment. The higher the rate, the greater the payment will be. That is why it is important to know where rates are headed when deciding to start your home search. Below is a chart created using Freddie Mac’s U.S. Economic & Housing Marketing Outlook. As you can see, interest rates are projected to increase steadily throughout 2019. How Will ...
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Homeowners Aged 65+ Have 48x More Net Worth Than Renters

Homeowners Aged 65+ Have 48x More Net Worth Than Renters

Every three years, the Federal Reserve conducts their Survey of Consumer Finances in which they collect data across all economic and social groups. Their latest survey data covers responses from 2013-2016. The study revealed that the median net worth of a homeowner was $231,400 – a 15% increase since 2013. At the same time, the median net worth of renters decreased by 5% ($5,200 today compared to $5,500 in 2013). These numbers reveal that the net worth of a ...
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Home Prices Up 6.34% Across the Country! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Home Prices Up 6.34% Across the Country! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) recently released their latest Quarterly Home Price Index report. In the report, home prices are compared both regionally and by state. Based on the latest numbers, if you plan on relocating to another state, waiting to move may end up costing you more! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Further Proof It’s NOT 2008 All Over Again

Further Proof It’s NOT 2008 All Over Again

Home sales numbers are leveling off, the rate of price appreciation has slowed to more historically normal averages, and inventory is finally increasing. We are headed into a more normal housing market. However, some are seeing these adjustments as red flags and are suggesting that we are headed back to the same challenges we experienced in 2008. Today, let’s look at one set of statistics that prove the current market is nothing like the one ...
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24% of Renters Believe Winter is the Best Time to Buy a Home

24% of Renters Believe Winter is the Best Time to Buy a Home

In real estate, the spring is often seen as the ideal time to buy or sell a house. The term “Spring Buyer’s Season” exists for a reason, as renters and those looking to move on from their current home thaw out from the winter and hit the market ready to buy. According to Bank of America’s annual Home Buyer Insights Report, 41% of renters surveyed agree that spring is the best time to buy a ...
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The #1 Reason to Not Wait Until Spring to Sell Your House

The #1 Reason to Not Wait Until Spring to Sell Your House

Many sellers believe that spring is the best time to place their homes on the market because buyer demand traditionally increases at that time of year, but what they don’t realize is that if every homeowner believes the same thing, then that is when they will have the most competition! The #1 Reason to List Your Home in the Winter Months is Less Competition! Housing supply traditionally shrinks at this time of year, so the ...
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Buyers: Don’t Be Surprised by Closing Costs!

Buyers: Don’t Be Surprised by Closing Costs!

Many homebuyers think that saving for their down payment is enough to buy the house of their dreams, but what about the closing costs that are required to obtain a mortgage? By law, a homebuyer will receive a loan estimate from their lender 3 days after submitting their loan application and they should receive a closing disclosure 3 days before the scheduled closing on their home. The closing disclosure includes final details about the loan ...
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Existing Home Sales Slowed by a Lack of Listings [INFOGRAPHIC]

Existing Home Sales Slowed by a Lack of Listings [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Existing home sales are currently at an annual pace of 5.22 million, which is up 1.4% over last month. This reverses the six-month trend of dips in sales every month. The inventory of existing homes is still below the 6-month supply needed for a normal market and is now at a 4.3-month supply. NAR’s Chief Economist, Lawrence Yun, had this to say: “After six consecutive months of decline, buyers are finally stepping back ...
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Thank You for Your Support!

Thank You for Your Support!

Have a great holiday!Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Will Your Side Hustle Buy You a House This Year?

Will Your Side Hustle Buy You a House This Year?

The top concern for most first-time home buyers is their ability to save for a down payment. According to a new survey, 36% of millennials took on a second job to make their dreams of homeownership a reality in 2017.  Among millennials with incomes over $100,000 a year, the top ways to come up with the necessary funds were to sell stocks (20%) or to sell cryptocurrency (16%). The most popular method of savings was ...
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Females Are Making It a Priority to Invest in Real Estate!

Females Are Making It a Priority to Invest in Real Estate!

Everyone wants a place to call home; a place that gives them a sense of security. We are currently seeing major interest from females who want to achieve this dream, and the numbers are proving it! In 2018, for the second year in a row, single female buyers accounted for 18% of all buyers. In 2017, 60% of millennial women listed as the primary borrowers on mortgages were single. According to the 2018 Home Buyer ...
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7 Reasons to List Your House For Sale This Holiday Season

7 Reasons to List Your House For Sale This Holiday Season

Every year at this time there are many homeowners who decide to wait until after the holidays to list their homes for the first time, while others who already have their homes on the market decide to take them off until after the holidays. Here are seven great reasons not to wait: Relocation buyers are out there. Many companies are still hiring throughout the holidays and need their new employees in their new positions as ...
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The Cost of Renting vs. Buying a Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Cost of Renting vs. Buying a Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Historically, the choice between renting or buying a home has been a tough decision. Looking at the percentage of income needed to rent a median-priced home today (28.4%) vs. the percentage needed to buy a median-priced home (17.5%), the choice becomes obvious. Every market is different. Before you renew your lease again, find out if you can put your housing costs to work by buying this year! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Wage Increases Make Home Buying More Affordable

Wage Increases Make Home Buying More Affordable

Everyone knows that housing affordability has been negatively impacted by rising prices and increasing mortgage rates, but there is another piece to the affordability equation – wages. How much a family earns obviously impacts how easy or difficult it is for them to afford to own a home. Because of an improving economy, wages are finally beginning to increase – and that dramatically affects home affordability. According to the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) September ...
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Home Sellers in Q3 Netted $61K at Resale

Home Sellers in Q3 Netted $61K at Resale

According to a recent report by ATTOM Data Solutions, home sellers who sold their homes in the third quarter of 2018 benefited from rising home prices and netted an average of $61,232. This is the highest average price gain since the second quarter of 2007 and represents a 32% return on the original purchase prices. After the Great Recession, many homeowners were left in negative equity situations but home price appreciation in the recovery period ...
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Are Homeowners Renovating to Sell or to Stay?

Are Homeowners Renovating to Sell or to Stay?

Over the past few years, two trends have emerged in the housing market: Home renovations have shot up Inventory of homes available for sale on the market has dropped A ‘normal’ housing market is defined by having a 6-month supply of homes for sale. According to the latest Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors, we are currently at a 4.4-month supply. This low inventory environment has many current homeowners worried that ...
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How to Honor a Veteran Today and Everyday

How to Honor a Veteran Today and Everyday

One hundred years ago, on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, we marked the end of the “war to end all wars.” That day, which was to be observed annually on the eleventh day of the eleventh month, became known as Armistice Day and then, later on, became Veterans Day. But Veterans Day is not for veterans. They don’t serve for thanks or recognition. Veterans Day sets aside a day ...
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VA Home Loans by the Numbers [INFOGRAPHIC]

VA Home Loans by the Numbers [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The Veterans Administration (VA) Home Loan is a benefit that is available to more than 22 million veterans & 2 million active duty service members which helps them achieve their dreams of homeownership. In 2017, $189 billion was loaned to veterans and their families through the program. VA Purchase Loans are on the rise in 46 out of 50 states and Washington, DC. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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75% of Renters Have Been Misinformed

75% of Renters Have Been Misinformed

Recently, multiple headlines have been written asserting that homeownership is less affordable today than at any other time in the last decade. Though the headlines are accurate, they lack context and lead too many Americans to believe that they can’t partake in a major part of the American Dream – owning a home. In 2008, the housing market crashed and home values fell by as much as 60% in certain markets. This was the major ...
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Why Has Housing Supply Increased as Sales Have Slowed Down?

Why Has Housing Supply Increased as Sales Have Slowed Down?

According to the latest Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the inventory of homes for sale this year compared to last year has increased for the last four months, all while sales of existing homes have slowed compared to last year’s numbers. For over three years leading up to this point, the exact opposite was true; Inventory dropped as sales soared. NAR’s Chief Economist Lawrence Yun shed some light on ...
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5 Tips When Buying a Newly Constructed Home

5 Tips When Buying a Newly Constructed Home

The lack of existing inventory for sale has forced many homebuyers to begin looking at new construction. When you buy a newly constructed home instead of an existing home, there are many extra steps that must take place. To ensure a hassle-free process, here are 5 tips to keep in mind if you are considering new construction: 1. Hire an Inspector Despite the fact that builders must comply with town and city regulations, a home ...
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2 Myths Holding Back Home Buyers

2 Myths Holding Back Home Buyers

Urban Institute recently released a report entitled, “Barriers to Accessing Homeownership: Down Payment, Credit, and Affordability,” which revealed that, “Consumers often think they need to put more money down to purchase a home than is actually required. In a 2017 survey, 68% of renters cited saving for a down payment as an obstacle to homeownership. Thirty-nine percent of renters believe that more than 20% is needed for a down payment and many renters are unaware of low–down payment programs.” ...
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The Difference an Hour Will Make This Fall [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Difference an Hour Will Make This Fall [INFOGRAPHIC]

Every Hour in the US Housing Market:  596 Homes Sell 278 Homes Regain Positive Equity Median Home Values Go Up $1.20 Powered by WPeMatico ...
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How Will Home Sales Measure Up Next Year?

How Will Home Sales Measure Up Next Year?

There are many questions about where home sales are headed next year. We have gathered the most reliable sources to help answer this question. Here are our sources: Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) – As the leading advocate for the real estate finance industry, the MBA enables members to successfully deliver fair, sustainable, and responsible real estate financing within ever-changing business environments. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) – The largest association of real estate professionals ...
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Taking Fear Out of the Mortgage Process

Taking Fear Out of the Mortgage Process

A considerable number of potential buyers shy away from jumping into the real estate market due to their uncertainties about the buying process. A specific cause for concern tends to be mortgage qualification. For many, the mortgage process can be scary, but it doesn’t have to be! In order to qualify in today’s market, you’ll need a down payment (the average down payment on all loans last year was 5%, with many buyers putting down ...
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Are You Spending TOO Much on Rent?

Are You Spending TOO Much on Rent?

Chances are if you are renting you are spending too much of your income on your monthly housing expense. There is a long-standing ‘rule’ that a household should not pay more than 28% of their income on their rent or mortgage payment. This percentage allows the household to save money for the future while comfortably covering other expenses. According to new data released from ApartmentList.com, 49.5 million renters in the United States were cost-burdened in 2017, ...
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Thinking of Selling Your Home? Here’s Why You Need A Pro in Your Corner

Thinking of Selling Your Home? Here’s Why You Need A Pro in Your Corner

With home prices on the rise and buyer demand still strong, some sellers may be tempted to try and sell their homes on their own without using the services of a real estate professional. Real estate agents are trained and experienced in negotiation and, in most cases, the seller is not. Sellers must realize that their ability to negotiate will determine whether or not they get the best deal for themselves and their families. Here ...
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Buying a Home Can Be Scary… Until You Know the Facts [INFOGRAPHIC]

Buying a Home Can Be Scary… Until You Know the Facts [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Many potential homebuyers believe that they need a 20% down payment and a 780 FICO® score to qualify to buy a home which stops many of them from even trying! Here are some facts: 72% of buyers who purchased homes this year have put down less than 20%. 76.4% of loan applications were approved last month. The average credit score of approved loans was 727 in September. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Where are Home Values Headed over the Next Few Years?

Where are Home Values Headed over the Next Few Years?

There are many questions about where home prices will be next year as well as where they may be headed over the next several years to come. We have gathered the most reliable sources to help answer these questions: The Home Price Expectation Survey – A survey of over 100 market analysts, real estate experts, and economists conducted by Pulsenomics each quarter. Zelman & Associates – The firm leverages unparalleled housing market expertise, extensive surveys ...
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Still Think You Need 15-20% Down to Buy a Home? Think Again!

Still Think You Need 15-20% Down to Buy a Home? Think Again!

According to a new study from Urban Institute, there are over 19 million millennials in 31 cities who are not only ready and willing to become homeowners, but are able to as well! Now that the largest generation since baby boomers has aged into prime homebuying age, there will no doubt be an uptick in the national homeownership rate. The study from Urban Institute revealed that nearly a quarter of this generation has the credit ...
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Housing Is Still Affordable in the United States!

Housing Is Still Affordable in the United States!

Lately, there have been many headlines circulating about whether or not there is an “affordability issue forming in the housing market.” If you are considering selling your current house and moving up to the home of your dreams, but are unsure whether or not to believe what you’re seeing in the news, let’s look at the results of the latest Housing Affordability Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR). According to NAR: “A value ...
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Will Home Prices Continue to Increase?

Will Home Prices Continue to Increase?

There are many unsubstantiated theories about what is happening with home prices. From those who are worried that prices are falling (data shows this is untrue), to those who are concerned that prices are again approaching boom peaks because of “irrational exuberance” (this is also untrue as prices are not at peak levels when they are adjusted for inflation), there seems to be no shortage of opinion. However, the increase in prices is easily explained by the theory of supply & demand. Whenever there ...
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20 Tips for Preparing Your House for Sale This Fall [INFOGRAPHIC]

20 Tips for Preparing Your House for Sale This Fall [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: When listing your house for sale, your top goal will be to get the home sold for the best price possible! There are many small projects that you can do to ensure this happens! Your real estate agent will have a list of specific suggestions for getting your house ready for market and is a great resource for finding local contractors who can help! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Is the Increase in Inventory a Bullish or Bearish Sign for Real Estate?

Is the Increase in Inventory a Bullish or Bearish Sign for Real Estate?

In a recent article, National Housing Inventory Crisis Reaches Inflection Point, realtor.com reported that: New listings jumped 8% year-over-year nationally, the largest increase since 2013 Total listings in the 45 largest markets are now up 6% on average over last year This increase in housing inventory has sparked two different reactions. Some are saying this is the first sign of a potential collapse while others are saying it is a welcomed reprieve from the lack ...
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5 Tips for Starting Your Home Search

5 Tips for Starting Your Home Search

In today’s real estate market, with low inventory dominating the conversation in many areas of the country, it can often be frustrating to be a first-time homebuyer if you aren’t prepared. In a recent realtor.com article entitled, “How to Find Your Dream Home—Without Losing Your Mind,” the author highlights some steps that first-time homebuyers can take to help carry their excitement of buying a home throughout the whole process. 1. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage ...
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Baby Boomers are Downsizing, Are You Ready to Move?

Baby Boomers are Downsizing, Are You Ready to Move?

For a while now baby boomers have been blamed for a portion of the housing market’s current lack of housing inventory, but should they really be getting the blame? Here’s what some of the experts have to say on the subject: Aaron Terrazas, Senior Economist at Zillow, says that “Boomers are healthier and working longer than previous generations, which means they aren’t yet ready to sell their homes.” According to a study by Realtor.com, 85% ...
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Pre-Approval: Your 1st Step in Buying a Home

Pre-Approval: Your 1st Step in Buying a Home

In many markets across the country, the number of buyers searching for their dream homes outnumbers the number of homes for sale. This has led to a competitive marketplace where buyers often need to stand out. One way to show you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search. Even if you are in a market that is not as competitive, understanding your budget ...
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Buying a Home? Do You Know the Lingo? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Buying a Home? Do You Know the Lingo? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Buying a home can be intimidating if you are not familiar with the terms used during the process. To start you on your path with confidence, we have compiled a list of some of the most common terms used when buying a home. The best way to ensure that your home-buying process is a confident one is to find a real estate professional who not only puts your family’s needs first, but will ...
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Dispelling the Myth About Home Affordability

Dispelling the Myth About Home Affordability

We have all seen the headlines that report that buying a home is less affordable today than it was at any other time in the last ten years, and those headlines are accurate. But, have you ever wondered why the headlines don’t say the last 25 years, the last 20 years, or even the last 11 years? The reason is that homes were less affordable 25, 20, or even 11 years ago than they are ...
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New Home Sales Up 12.7% From Last Year

New Home Sales Up 12.7% From Last Year

According to the latest New Residential Sales Report from the Census Bureau, new construction sales in August were up 3.5% from July and 12.7% from last year! This marks the second consecutive month with double-digit year-over-year growth (12.8% in July). The report also showed that builders have ramped up construction with an increase in new construction starts and completions. The summer months are often a busy time for builders as they capitalize on the warmer ...
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What’s Going On With Home Prices?

What’s Going On With Home Prices?

According to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Insights Report, national home prices in August were up 5.5% from August 2017. This marks the first time since June 2016 that home prices did not appreciate by at least 6.0% year-over-year. CoreLogic’s Chief Economist Frank Nothaft gave some insight into this change, “The rise in mortgage rates this summer to their highest level in seven years has made it more difficult for potential buyers to afford a home ...
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The True Cost of NOT Owning Your Home

The True Cost of NOT Owning Your Home

Owning a home has great financial benefits, yet many continue to rent! Today, let’s look at the financial reasons why owning a home of your own has been a part of the American Dream for the entirety of America’s existence. Realtor.com reported that: “Buying remains the more attractive option in the long term – that remains the American dream, and it’s true in many markets where renting has become really the shortsighted option…as people get more savings in ...
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Buying a Home is Cheaper than Renting in 38 States! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Buying a Home is Cheaper than Renting in 38 States! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: According to a study by GOBankingRates, it is cheaper to buy a home than rent in 38 states across the country. In six states the difference between buying & renting would account for less than a $50 monthly difference, leaving the choice up to the individual family. Nationwide, it is now 26.3% cheaper to buy. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Are We About to Enter a Buyers’ Market?

Are We About to Enter a Buyers’ Market?

Home sales are below last year’s levels, home values are appreciating at a slower pace, and there are reports showing purchasing demand softening. This has some thinking we may be entering a buyers’ market after sellers have had the upper hand for the past several years. Is this really happening? The market has definitely softened. However, according to two chief economists in the industry, we are a long way from a market that totally favors ...
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2 Factors to Watch in Today’s Real Estate Market Whether Buying or Selling

2 Factors to Watch in Today’s Real Estate Market Whether Buying or Selling

When it comes to buying or selling a home there are many factors you should consider. Where you want to live, why you want to buy or sell, and who will help you along your journey are just some of those factors. When it comes to today’s real estate market, though, the top two factors to consider are what’s happening with interest rates & inventory. Interest Rates Mortgage interest rates have been on the rise ...
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Mortgage Interest Rates are Still Going Up… Should You Wait to Buy?

Mortgage Interest Rates are Still Going Up… Should You Wait to Buy?

Mortgage interest rates, as reported by Freddie Mac, have increased by close to a quarter of a percent over the last several weeks. Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, the Mortgage Bankers Association, and the National Association of Realtors are all calling for mortgage rates to rise another quarter of a percent by next year. In addition to the predictions from the four major reporting agencies mentioned above, the Federal Open Market Committee recently voted “unanimously to approve a 1/4 percentage point increase in the primary ...
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How Does the Supply of Homes for Sale Impact Buyer Demand?

How Does the Supply of Homes for Sale Impact Buyer Demand?

The price of any item is determined by the supply of that item, as well as the market’s demand for it. The National Association of REALTORS (NAR) surveys “over 50,000 real estate practitioners about their expectations for home sales, prices and market conditions” for their monthly REALTORS Confidence Index. Their latest edition sheds some light on the relationship between seller traffic (supply) and buyer traffic (demand). Buyer Demand The map below was created after asking the question: “How would you rate buyer traffic ...
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Should I Buy Now? Or Wait Until Next Year? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Should I Buy Now? Or Wait Until Next Year? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The cost of waiting to buy is defined as the additional funds it would take to buy a home if prices & interest rates were to increase over a period of time. Freddie Mac predicts interest rates to rise to 5.2% by the third quarter of 2019. CoreLogic predicts home prices to appreciate by 5.1% over the next 12 months. If you are ready and willing to buy your dream home, find out ...
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Are Home Prices Softening or Are They Falling?

Are Home Prices Softening or Are They Falling?

We are beginning to see reports that more housing inventory is coming to the market and that buyer demand may not be increasing at the same pace it did earlier this year. The result will be many headlines written to address the impact that these two situations will have on home values. Many of these headline writers will confuse “softening home prices” with “falling home prices,” but there is a major difference between the two ...
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The Cost of NOT Paying PMI

The Cost of NOT Paying PMI

Saving for a down payment is often the biggest hurdle for a first-time homebuyer as median incomes, rents, and home prices all vary depending on where you live. There is a common misconception among homebuyers that a 20% down payment is required, and it is this limiting belief that often adds months, and sometimes even years, to the home-buying process. So, if you can purchase a home with less than a 20% down payment… why ...
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Where Are Mortgage Interest Rates Headed In 2019?

Where Are Mortgage Interest Rates Headed In 2019?

The interest rate you pay on your home mortgage has a direct impact on your monthly payment; the higher the rate, the greater the payment will be. That is why it is important to know where rates are headed when deciding to start your home search. Below is a chart created using Freddie Mac’s U.S. Economic & Housing Marketing Outlook. As you can see, interest rates are projected to increase steadily over the course of the ...
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How Much Has Your Home Increased in Value?

How Much Has Your Home Increased in Value?

Home values have risen dramatically over the last twelve months. In CoreLogic’s most recent Home Price Index Report, they revealed that national home prices have increased by 6.2% year-over-year. CoreLogic broke down appreciation even further into four price ranges, giving us a more detailed view than if we had simply looked at the year-over-year increases in national median home price. The chart below shows the four price ranges from the report, as well as each one’s year-over-year growth from July 2017 ...
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4 Reasons to Sell This Fall [INFOGRAPHIC]

4 Reasons to Sell This Fall [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Housing inventory is still under the 6-month supply that is needed for a normal housing market. Buyers are often competing with one another for the listings that are available. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Is the Real Estate Market Finally Getting Back to Normal?

Is the Real Estate Market Finally Getting Back to Normal?

The housing market has been anything but normal for the last eleven years. In a normal real estate market, home prices appreciate 3.7% annually. Below, however, are the price swings since 2007 according to the latest Home Price Expectation Survey: After the bubble burst in June 2007, values depreciated 6.1% annually until February 2012. From March 2012 to today, the market has been recovering with values appreciating 6.2% annually. These wild swings in values were ...
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25% of Homes with a Mortgage are Now Equity Rich!

25% of Homes with a Mortgage are Now Equity Rich!

Rising home prices have been in the news a lot lately and much of the focus has been on whether home prices are accelerating too quickly, as well as how sustainable the growth in prices really is. One of the often-overlooked benefits of rising prices, however, is the impact that they have on a homeowner’s equity position. Home equity is defined as the difference between the home’s fair market value and the outstanding balance of ...
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If You Are Thinking of Selling? You Must Act NOW!

If You Are Thinking of Selling? You Must Act NOW!

If you thought about selling your house this year, now more than ever may be the time to do it! The inventory of homes for sale is well below historic norms and buyer demand is skyrocketing. We were still in high school when we learned about the concept of supply and demand, so we understand that the best time to sell something is when the supply of that item is low and demand for that item is ...
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Is Buying a Home Really More Stressful Than Planning a Wedding? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Is Buying a Home Really More Stressful Than Planning a Wedding? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: According to a new survey from Open Listings, 62% of Americans ages 25-54 believe that buying a home is more stressful than planning a wedding. Many young couples are saving for a wedding and a home at the same time. The average US wedding now costs 66% of a median home down payment, according to The Knot. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Are Homebuyers Starting to Hit the ‘Pause’ Button?

Are Homebuyers Starting to Hit the ‘Pause’ Button?

For the last several years, buyer demand has far exceeded the housing supply available for sale. This low supply and high demand have led to home prices appreciating by an average of 6.2% annually since 2012. With this being said, three of the four major reports used to measure buyer activity have revealed that purchasing demand may be softening. Here are the four indices, how they measure demand (methodology), what their latest reports said, and ...
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Home Prices Have Appreciated 6.9% in 2018

Home Prices Have Appreciated 6.9% in 2018

Between 1987 and 1999, which is often referred to as the ‘Pre-Bubble Period,’ home prices grew at an average of 3.6% according to the Home Price Expectation Survey. Every month, the economists at CoreLogic release the results of their Home Price Insights Report, which includes the actual year-over-year change in prices across the country and their predictions for the following year. The chart below shows the forecasted year-over-year prices for 2018 (predictions made in 2017) ...
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NAR Reports Show It’s A Great Time to Sell!

NAR Reports Show It’s A Great Time to Sell!

We all realize that the best time to sell anything is when the demand for that item is high and the supply of that item is limited. The last two major reports issued by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) revealed information that suggests that right now continues to be a great time to sell your house. Let’s look at the data covered in the latest Pending Home Sales Report and Existing Home Sales Report. THE PENDING HOME SALES REPORT ...
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4 Reasons Why Fall Is A Great Time to Buy A Home!

4 Reasons Why Fall Is A Great Time to Buy A Home!

Here are four great reasons to consider buying a home today instead of waiting. 1. Prices Will Continue to Rise CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Insights report reveals that home prices have appreciated by 6.2% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts that prices will continue to increase at a rate of 5.1% over the next year. Home values will continue to appreciate for years. Waiting no longer makes sense. 2. Mortgage Interest Rates Are Projected to ...
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Home Prices Up 6.49% Across the Country! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Home Prices Up 6.49% Across the Country! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) recently released their latest quarterly Home Price Index report. In the report, home prices are compared both regionally and by state. Based on the latest numbers, if you plan on relocating to another state, waiting to move may end up costing you more! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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What Does the Future Hold for Home Prices?

What Does the Future Hold for Home Prices?

Home prices are at the top of everyone’s minds. Can they maintain their current pace of appreciation? Will rising mortgage rates negatively impact home values? Will the next economic slowdown cause prices to crash? Let’s try to answer these questions based on what has happened in the past as well as what we know about the current real estate market. The Impact of Rising Interest Rates We explained earlier this year that rising mortgage rates ...
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Homeownership is a Dominant Gene

Homeownership is a Dominant Gene

There are many things that factor into the decision to buy a home. New research from the Urban Institute suggests that one of those things may be inherited from your parents. Children are More Likely to Own a Home if Their Parents Did According to an analysis of millennial homeowners, the homeownership rate of those whose parents rent their homes is 14.4%, while the rate amongst millennials whose parents are homeowners is 31.7%! “A young ...
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5 Reasons You Should Sell This Fall!

5 Reasons You Should Sell This Fall!

Here are five reasons why listing your home for sale this fall makes sense. 1. Demand Is Strong The latest Buyer Traffic Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains very strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing and able to purchase…and are in the market right now! In fact, more often than not, multiple buyers end up competing with each other to buy the same homes. Take advantage of ...
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A+ Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Pro [INFOGRAPHIC]

A+ Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Pro [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Hiring a real estate professional to help you buy your dream home or sell your current house is one of the most ‘educated’ decisions you can make! A real estate professional has the experience needed to help you through the entire process. Make sure that you hire someone who knows current market conditions and can simply and effectively explain them to you and your family! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Why are Existing Home Sales Down?

Why are Existing Home Sales Down?

The latest Existing Home Sales Report issued by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) revealed that home sales have decreased for four consecutive months and are at their slowest pace in over two years. This has some industry leaders puzzled considering the fact that the economy is strengthening, unemployment is down, and wages are beginning to rise. This begs the question: “Where are the buyers?” Actually, agents in the field of most communities are still ...
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Top 3 Myths About Today’s Real Estate Market

Top 3 Myths About Today’s Real Estate Market

There are many conflicting headlines when it comes to describing today’s real estate market. Some are making comparisons to the market we experienced 10 years ago and are starting to believe that we may be doomed to repeat ourselves. Others are just plain wrong when it comes to what it takes to qualify for a mortgage. Today, we want to try and clear the air by shedding some light on what’s causing some of these ...
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Home Sales Expected to Continue Increasing in 2019

Home Sales Expected to Continue Increasing in 2019

Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, and the Mortgage Bankers Association are all projecting that home sales will increase nicely in 2019. Below is a chart depicting the projections of each entity for the remainder of 2018, as well as for 2019. As we can see, Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, and the Mortgage Bankers Association all believe that homes sales will increase steadily over the next year. If you are a homeowner who has considered selling your house recently, now may be ...
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Rent or Buy: Either Way You’re Paying A Mortgage!

Rent or Buy: Either Way You’re Paying A Mortgage!

There are some people who have not purchased homes because they are uncomfortable taking on the obligation of a mortgage. Everyone should realize, however, that unless you are living with your parents rent-free, you are paying a mortgage – either yours or your landlord’s. As Entrepreneur Magazine, a premier source for small business, explained in their article, “12 Practical Steps to Getting Rich”: “While renting on a temporary basis isn’t terrible, you should most certainly ...
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What State Gives You the Most ‘Bang for Your Buck’? [INFOGRAPHIC]

What State Gives You the Most ‘Bang for Your Buck’? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The majority of states in the Midwest and South offer a lower cost of living than states in the Northeast and West. The ‘biggest bang for your buck’ comes in Mississippi where, compared to the national average, you can actually purchase $115.74 worth of goods for $100. For more information regarding the methodology used to create this map, visit the Tax Foundation. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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What Does the Recent Rash of Price Reductions Mean to the Real Estate Market?

What Does the Recent Rash of Price Reductions Mean to the Real Estate Market?

Last week, in a new report from Zillow, it was revealed that there has been a rash of price reductions across the country. According to the report: There are more price cuts now than a year ago in over two-thirds of the nation’s largest metros About 14% of all listings had a price cut in June Since the beginning of the year, the share of listings with a price cut increased 1.2% This is the ...
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Having Trouble Saving Enough for Your Down Payment? Crowdfund It!

Having Trouble Saving Enough for Your Down Payment? Crowdfund It!

You read that right! First-time buyers across the country are getting creative when it comes to saving the necessary down payment to buy a home. Many couples are asking their wedding guests to contribute to their “Down Payment Fund” rather than fulfilling a traditional registry. This is fueled by the fact that many couples live together prior to marriage and already have the necessary items to make a house a home…they just need the house! ...
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5 Real Estate Reality TV Myths Explained

5 Real Estate Reality TV Myths Explained

Have you ever been flipping through the channels, only to find yourself glued to the couch in an HGTV binge session? We’ve all been there, watching entire seasons of “Love it or List it,” “Million Dollar Listing,” “House Hunters,” “Property Brothers,” and so many more all in one sitting. When you’re in the middle of your real estate themed show marathon, you might start to think that everything you see on TV must be how it works ...
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The Net Worth of a Homeowner is 44x Greater Than A Renter!

The Net Worth of a Homeowner is 44x Greater Than A Renter!

Every three years, the Federal Reserve conducts their Survey of Consumer Finances in which they collect data across all economic and social groups. Their latest survey data, covering 2013-2016 was recently released. The study revealed that the median net worth of a homeowner was $231,400 – a 15% increase since 2013. At the same time, the median net worth of renters decreased by 5% ($5,200 today compared to $5,500 in 2013). These numbers reveal that ...
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Housing Market: Another Gigantic Difference Between 2008 and 2018

Housing Market: Another Gigantic Difference Between 2008 and 2018

Some are attempting to compare the current housing market to the market leading up to the “boom and bust” that we experienced a decade ago. They look at price appreciation and conclude that we are on a similar trajectory, speeding toward another housing crisis. However, there is a major difference between the two markets. Last decade, while demand was being artificially created by extremely loose lending standards, a tremendous amount of inventory was coming to ...
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Homebuyers Willing to Sacrifice ‘Must-Haves’ in Favor of Good School Districts

Homebuyers Willing to Sacrifice ‘Must-Haves’ in Favor of Good School Districts

It should come as no surprise that buying a home in a good school district is important to homebuyers. According to a report from Realtor.com, 86% of 18-34 year-olds and 84% of those aged 35-54 indicated that their home search areas were defined by school district boundaries. What is surprising, however, is that 78% of recent homebuyers sacrificed features from their “must-have” lists in order to find homes within their dream school districts. The top ...
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Have You Outgrown Your Starter Home?

Have You Outgrown Your Starter Home?

For many Americans, buying their first home is their first taste of achieving part of the American Dream. There is a sense of pride that comes along with owning your own home and building your family’s wealth through your monthly mortgage payment. It may seem hard to imagine that the first home you purchased (which made your dreams come true) might not be the home that will allow you to achieve the rest of your ...
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Are You Thinking of Selling Your Home? Competition Is Coming!

Are You Thinking of Selling Your Home? Competition Is Coming!

The number of building permits issued for single-family homes is the best indicator of how many newly built homes will rise over the next few months. According to the latest U.S. Census Bureau and U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development Residential Sales Report, the number of building permits issued in June was 850,000, a 0.8% increase from May. How will this impact buyers? More inventory means more options. Mark Fleming, First American’s Chief Economist, explained that this is good news ...
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Existing Home Sales Cooling Off This Summer [INFOGRAPHIC]

Existing Home Sales Cooling Off This Summer [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: According to the National Association of Realtors’ latest Existing Home Sales Report, sales in June were down 2.2% from last year. Inventory of homes for sale showed a modest improvement of 0.5% over last year’s figures, but still remains under the 6-month supply needed for a normal market. NAR’s Chief Economist Lawrence Yun had this to say: “There continues to be a mismatch since the spring between the growing level of homebuyer demand ...
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Supply & Demand Will Determine Future Home Values

Supply & Demand Will Determine Future Home Values

Will home values continue to appreciate throughout 2018? The answer is simple: YES! – as long as there are more purchasers in the market than there are available homes for them to buy. This is known as the theory of “supply and demand,” which is defined as: “The amount of a commodity, product, or service available and the desire of buyers for it, considered as factors regulating its price.” When demand exceeds supply, prices go ...
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The Wave of Millennial Homebuyers Continues to Swell

The Wave of Millennial Homebuyers Continues to Swell

Many have written about the millennial generation and whether or not they, as a whole, believe in homeownership as a part of attaining their American Dream. Comparatively speaking, millennials have taken longer to obtain traditional milestones (like getting married, having kids and buying a home) than generations before them, but that does not mean that they do not aspire to still achieve those things. For older millennials (aged 25-34) who have established themselves in their ...
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5 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Professional Before Entering the Market!

5 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Professional Before Entering the Market!

Whether you are buying or selling a home, it can be quite the adventure. In this world of instant gratification and internet searches, many sellers think that they can ‘For Sale by Owner’ or ‘FSBO,’ but it’s not as easy as it may seem. That’s why you need an experienced real estate professional to guide you on the path to achieving your ultimate goal! The 5 reasons you need a real estate professional in your corner haven’t changed but have ...
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Millionaire to Millennials: Owning Your Home Can Help You Retire Sooner!

Millionaire to Millennials: Owning Your Home Can Help You Retire Sooner!

In a CNBC article, self-made millionaire David Bach explained that: “Buying a home is the escalator to wealth in America. Homeownership can also help you retire early, that is, if you pay your mortgage off.”  Bach suggests that homebuyers should, “Take out a 30-year mortgage, but with the intention of paying it off in 25, 20 or ideally, 15 years.” How does he suggest you do this? Here’s the secret: “…If you were paying $1,000 a month, now ...
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Are Lending Standards Propping Up Home Prices?

Are Lending Standards Propping Up Home Prices?

Back in 2005, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan described the dramatic increases in residential real estate values as a “froth in housing markets.” Greenspan went on to say: “The increase in the prevalence of interest-only loans and the introduction of more-exotic forms of adjustable-rate mortgages are developments of particular concern…some households may be employing these instruments to purchase homes that would otherwise be unaffordable, and consequently their use could be adding to pressures in the ...
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Buying Is Now 26.3% Cheaper Than Renting in the US

Buying Is Now 26.3% Cheaper Than Renting in the US

The results of the latest Rent vs. Buy Report from Trulia show that homeownership remains cheaper than renting, with a traditional 30-year fixed rate mortgage, in 98 of the 100 largest metro areas in the United States. In the six years that Trulia has conducted this study, this is the first time that it was cheaper to rent than buy in any of the metropolitan areas. It’s no surprise, however, that those two metros are San Jose and ...
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You Need an Agent Who Will Always Put You First

You Need an Agent Who Will Always Put You First

Whether you are a rookie homebuyer or have gone through the process many times, having a local real estate expert who is well versed in the neighborhood you are looking to move to, as well as the trends of that area, should be your goal while home shopping. One great example of an agent who is in your corner and is always looking out for your best interests is one of the main characters on ABC’s ...
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The #1 Reason to Put Your House on The Market TODAY!

The #1 Reason to Put Your House on The Market TODAY!

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) released the results of their latest Existing Home Sales Report which revealed that home sales declined 0.6% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.38 million in June from 5.41 million in May, and are 2.2% below a year ago. Some may look at these numbers and think that now is a bad time to sell their house, but in fact, the opposite is true. The national slowdown in sales is directly tied ...
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Americans Rank Real Estate Best Investment for 5 Years Running! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Americans Rank Real Estate Best Investment for 5 Years Running! [INFOGRAPHIC]

  Some Highlights: Real estate has outranked stocks/mutual funds, gold, savings accounts/CDs, and bonds as the best long-term investment among Americans for the last 5 years! The generations agree! Real estate is the best investment! Generation X leads the way with 37% believing in real estate as the top investment. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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4 Reasons Why We Are Not Heading Toward Another Housing Bubble

4 Reasons Why We Are Not Heading Toward Another Housing Bubble

With home prices continuing to appreciate above historic levels, some are concerned that we may be heading for another housing ‘boom & bust.’ It is important to remember, however, that today’s market is quite different than the bubble market of twelve years ago. Here are four key metrics that will explain why: Home Prices Mortgage Standards Foreclosure Rates Housing Affordability 1. HOME PRICES There is no doubt that home prices have reached 2006 levels in ...
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Will Your Current House Fit Your Needs in Retirement?

Will Your Current House Fit Your Needs in Retirement?

As more and more baby boomers enter retirement age, the question of whether or not to sell their homes and move will become a hot topic. In today’s housing market climate, with low available inventory in the starter and trade-up home categories, it makes sense to evaluate your home’s ability to adapt to your needs in retirement. According to the National Association of Exclusive Buyers Agents (NAEBA), there are 7 factors that you should consider ...
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Selling Your Home? Here’s 2 Ways to Get the Best Price!

Selling Your Home? Here’s 2 Ways to Get the Best Price!

Every homeowner wants to make sure that they maximize their financial reward when selling their home, but how do you guarantee that you receive the maximum value for your house? Here are two ways to ensure that you get the highest price possible. 1. Price it a Little Low This may seem counterintuitive, but let’s take a look at this concept for a moment. Many homeowners think that pricing their homes a little OVER market ...
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Lack of Listings Slowing Down the Market

Lack of Listings Slowing Down the Market

As the real estate market continues to move down the road to a complete recovery, we see home values and home sales increasing while distressed sales (foreclosures and short sales) continue to fall to their lowest points in years. There is no doubt that the housing market will continue to strengthen throughout 2018. However, there is one thing that may cause the industry to tap the brakes: a lack of housing inventory! Here’s what a ...
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What You Need to Know About the Mortgage Process [INFOGRAPHIC]

What You Need to Know About the Mortgage Process [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Many buyers are purchasing a home with a down payment as little as 3%. You may already qualify for a loan, even if you don’t have perfect credit. Take advantage of the knowledge of your local professionals who are there to help you determine how much you can afford. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Housing Will Not Fall Victim to Next Economic Storm

Housing Will Not Fall Victim to Next Economic Storm

Some experts are calling for a slowdown in the economy later this year and most economists have predicted that the next recession could only be eighteen months away. The question is, what impact will a recession have on the housing market? Here are the opinions of several experts on the subject: Ivy Zelman in her latest “Z Report”: “While economic activity appears to have accelerated so far in 2018, some prominent economic forecasters have become ...
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Demand for Homes to Buy Continues to Climb

Demand for Homes to Buy Continues to Climb

Across the United States, there is a severe mismatch between the low number of houses for sale and the high demand for those houses! First-time homebuyers are out in force and are being met with a highly competitive summer real estate market. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the inventory of homes for sale “has fallen year-over-year for 36 consecutive months,” and now stands at a 4.1-month supply. A 6-month supply of inventory ...
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4 REAL Reasons Why We Buy A Home!

4 REAL Reasons Why We Buy A Home!

We often talk about why it makes financial sense to buy a home, but more often than not, the emotional reasons are the more powerful or compelling ones. No matter what shape or size your living space is, the concept and feeling of home can mean different things to different people. Whether it’s a certain scent or a favorite chair, the emotional reasons why we choose to buy our own homes are typically more important ...
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First-Time Home Buyers Continue to Put Down Less Than 6%!

First-Time Home Buyers Continue to Put Down Less Than 6%!

According to the Realtors Confidence Index from the National Association of Realtors, 61% of first-time homebuyers purchased their homes with down payments below 6% in 2017. Many potential homebuyers believe that a 20% down payment is necessary to buy a home and have disqualified themselves without even trying, but in March, 71% of first-time buyers and 54% of all buyers put less than 20% down. Ralph McLaughlin, Chief Economist and Founder of Veritas Urbis Economics, ...
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Want to Sell Your House Faster? Don’t Forget to Stage! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Want to Sell Your House Faster? Don’t Forget to Stage! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The National Association of Realtors surveyed their members & released the findings of their Profile of Home Staging. 62% of seller’s agents say that staging a home decreases the amount of time a home spends on the market. 50% of staged homes saw a 1-10% increase in dollar-value offers from buyers. 77% of buyer’s agents said staging made it easier for buyers to visualize the home as their own. The top rooms to ...
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House-Buying Power at Near-Historic Levels

House-Buying Power at Near-Historic Levels

We keep hearing that home affordability is approaching crisis levels. While this may be true in a few metros across the country, housing affordability is not a challenge in the clear majority of the country. In their most recent Real House Price Index, First American reported that consumer “house-buying power” is at “near-historic levels.” Their index is based on three components: Median Household Income Mortgage Interest Rates Home Prices The report explains: “Changing incomes and ...
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Rising Interest Rates Have Not Dampened Demand

Rising Interest Rates Have Not Dampened Demand

Since the beginning of the year, mortgage interest rates have risen over a half of a percentage point (from 3.95% to 4.52%), according to Freddie Mac. Even a small rise in interest rates can greatly impact a buyer’s monthly mortgage payment. First American recently released the results of their quarterly Real Estate Sentiment Index (RESI), in which they surveyed title and real estate agents across the country about the impact of rising rates on first-time ...
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How Long Do Most Families Live in a House?

How Long Do Most Families Live in a House?

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) keeps historical data on many aspects of homeownership. One of their data points, which has changed dramatically, is the median tenure of a family in a home, meaning how long a family stays in a home prior to moving. As the graph below shows, over the last twenty years (1985-2008), the median tenure averaged exactly six years. However, since 2014, that average is almost ten years – an increase of almost 50%. Why the ...
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The #1 Reason to List Your House for Sale NOW!

The #1 Reason to List Your House for Sale NOW!

If you are debating whether or not to list your house for sale this year, here is the #1 reason not to wait! Buyer Demand Continues to Outpace the Supply of Homes for Sale The National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) Chief Economist Lawrence Yun recently commented on the current lack of inventory: “Inventory coming onto the market during this year’s spring buying season – as evidenced again by last month’s weak reading – was not even close to ...
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Cost Across Time [INFOGRAPHIC]

Cost Across Time [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: With interest rates still around 4.5%, now is a great time to look back at where rates have been over the last 40 years. Rates are projected to climb to 5.1% by this time next year according to Freddie Mac. The impact your interest rate makes on your monthly mortgage cost is significant! Lock in a low rate now while you can! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Homes More Affordable Today than 1985-2000

Homes More Affordable Today than 1985-2000

Rising home prices have many concerned that the average family will no longer be able to afford the most precious piece of the American Dream – their own home. However, it is not just the price of a home that determines its affordability. The monthly cost of a home is determined by the price and the interest rate on the mortgage used to purchase it. Today, mortgage interest rates stand at about 4.5%. The average ...
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Why Should You Use A Professional to Sell Your Home?

Why Should You Use A Professional to Sell Your Home?

When homeowners decide to sell their houses, they obviously want to get the best possible price for their home with the least amount of hassles along the way. However, for the vast majority of sellers, the most important result is actually getting their homes sold. In order to accomplish all three goals, a seller should realize the importance of using a real estate professional. We realize that technology has changed a buyer’s behavior during the home ...
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VA Loans: Making a Home for the Brave Possible

VA Loans: Making a Home for the Brave Possible

Since the creation of the Veterans Affairs (VA) Home Loans Program, over 22 million veterans have achieved the American Dream of homeownership. Many veterans do not know the details of the program and therefore do not take advantage of the benefits available to them. If you are a veteran or you know someone who is, here is a breakdown of the VA Home Loan benefits that can be used to achieve the American Dream! Top ...
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Buying This Summer? Be Prepared for Bidding Wars

Buying This Summer? Be Prepared for Bidding Wars

Summer is traditionally a busy season for real estate. Buyers come out in force and homeowners list their houses for sale hoping to capitalize on those buyers who are looking to purchase before the new school year. This year will be no different! Buyers have already been out in force looking for their dream homes and more are on their way. The challenge is that the inventory of homes for sale has not kept up ...
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How-Can-I-Keep-My-House-Cool-In-The-Summer?

How Can I Keep My House Cool In The Summer?

Summertime in Charleston, South Carolina can be a brutal time of the year when temperatures start climbing into the 90's and don't stop until they've peaked somewhere in the lower 100's (and that’s not even taking humidity into account). These are the days you want your home to be a cool haven to come back to, yet not cost you a pocket full of money to keep habitable. If you’ve been wondering how can I ...
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5 Reasons Millennials Choose to Buy a Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

5 Reasons Millennials Choose to Buy a Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: “The majority of millennials said they consider owning a home more sensible than renting for both financial and lifestyle reasons — including control of living space, flexibility in future decisions, privacy and security, and living in a nice home.” The top reason millennials choose to buy is to have control over their living space, at 93%. Many millennials who rent a home or apartment prior to buying their own homes dream of the ...
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Next Recession in 2020? What Will Be the Impact?

Next Recession in 2020? What Will Be the Impact?

Economists and analysts know that the country has experienced economic growth for almost a decade. They also know that a recession can’t be too far off. A recent report by Zillow Research shed light on a survey conducted by Pulsenomics in which they asked economists, investment strategists and market analysts how they felt about the current housing market. That report revealed the possible timing of the next recession: “Experts largely expect the next recession to ...
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What’s the Median Home Value in Your State?

What’s the Median Home Value in Your State?

If you’ve entered the real estate market as a buyer or a seller, you’ve inevitably heard the mantra “location, location, location” in reference to identical homes increasing or decreasing in value based on where they’re located. In today’s housing market where home prices are appreciating quickly, it’s important to know that not every home appreciates at the same rate. The map below demonstrates that point on a state-by-state basis using data from the National Association ...
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Are You Wondering If You Can Buy Your First Home?

Are You Wondering If You Can Buy Your First Home?

There are many people sitting on the sidelines trying to decide if they should purchase a home or sign a rental lease. Some might wonder if it makes sense to purchase a house before they get married or start a family, some might think they are too young, and still, some others might think their current incomes would never enable them to qualify for a mortgage. We want to share what the typical first-time homebuyer ...
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You DO NOT Need 20% Down to Buy Your Home NOW!

You DO NOT Need 20% Down to Buy Your Home NOW!

The Aspiring Home Buyers Profile from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) found that the American public is still somewhat confused about what is required to qualify for a home mortgage loan in today’s housing market. The results of the survey show that the main reason why non-homeowners do not own their own homes is because they believe that they cannot afford them. This brings us to two major misconceptions that we want to address today. 1. Down Payment ...
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4 Reasons to Sell This Summer [INFOGRAPHIC]

4 Reasons to Sell This Summer [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Buyer demand continues to outpace the supply of homes for sale which means that buyers are often competing with one another for the few listings that are available! Housing inventory is still under the 6-month supply needed to sustain a normal housing market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Homes are More Affordable in 44 out of 50 States

Homes are More Affordable in 44 out of 50 States

With both home prices and mortgage rates increasing this year, many are concerned about a family’s ability to purchase a major part of the American Dream – its own home. However, if we compare housing affordability today to the average affordability prior to the housing boom and bust, we are in much better shape than most believe. In Black Knight’s latest monthly Mortgage Monitor, they revealed that in the vast majority of the country, it ...
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3 Issues Facing Today’s Real Estate Market

3 Issues Facing Today’s Real Estate Market

Last week, the National Association of Real Estate Editors (NAREE) held their 52nd Annual Journalism Conference in Las Vegas, NV. Among the many highly anticipated sessions was one called “Top Ten Issues Affecting Real Estate™,” given by Joseph Nahas, Jr., Chair of the Counselors of Real Estate & Senior Vice President of Equus Capital Partners.  The Counselors of Real Estate (CRE) “is an international organization of high profile property professionals which include principals of prominent ...
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How A Lack of Inventory Impacts the Housing Market

How A Lack of Inventory Impacts the Housing Market

The housing crisis is finally in the rear-view mirror as the real estate market moves down the road to a complete recovery. Home values are up, home sales are up, and distressed sales (foreclosures and short sales) have fallen to their lowest points in years. The market will continue to strengthen in 2018. However, there is one thing that may cause the industry to tap the brakes: a lack of housing inventory. Buyer demand naturally increases ...
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Top 4 Home Renovations for Max ROI [INFOGRAPHIC]

Top 4 Home Renovations for Max ROI [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Whether you are selling your home, just purchased your first home or are a homeowner planning to stay put for a while, there is value in knowing which home improvement projects will net you the most Return On Investment (ROI). Minor bathroom renovations can go a long way toward improving the quality of your everyday life and/or impressing potential buyers. Upgrading your landscaping or curb appeal helps get buyers in the door. These ...
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Are Lending Standards Too Loose…or Too Tight?

Are Lending Standards Too Loose…or Too Tight?

With home values appreciating at record rates, some are concerned that we may be heading for another housing bubble like the one we experienced a decade ago. One of the major culprits of that housing boom and bust was the loosening of standards for mortgage credit. In a study done at the University of North Carolina immediately after the crisis, it was revealed that: “Lenders began originating large numbers of high risk mortgages from around ...
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Parents Say Kids’ Opinions Matter Big When Buying a Home

Parents Say Kids’ Opinions Matter Big When Buying a Home

A recent survey conducted by Harris Poll and released by SunTrust Mortgage found that “55% of homeowners with a child under the age of 18 at the time when they purchased their home said that the opinion of their offspring played a major role in their home buying decision.” When the results were broken down by the parent’s age, millennials (those 18-36) led the way with 74% of homeowners saying that their child’s opinion was ...
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When Is a Good Time to Rent? Not Now!

When Is a Good Time to Rent? Not Now!

People often ask if now is a good time to buy a home, but nobody ever asks whether or not it’s a good time to rent. Regardless, we want to make certain that everyone understands that now is NOT a good time to rent. The Census Bureau recently released their 2018 first quarter median rent numbers. According to their report, here is a graph showing rent increases from 1988 until today:   As you can see, rents have steadily ...
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Days on The Market Drops to New Low in April

Days on The Market Drops to New Low in April

According to recently released data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the median number of days that a home spent on the market hit a new low of 26 days in April, as 57% of homes were on the market for under a month. NAR’s Chief Economist, Lawrence Yun, had this to say, “What is available for sale is going under contract at a rapid pace. Since NAR began tracking this data in May 2011, the median days a ...
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When-Choosing-A-Realtor-To-List-Your-Home-With, What-Are-The-Top-Questions-You-Should-Ask?

When Choosing A Realtor To List Your Home With, What Are The Top Questions You Should Ask?

While selling your home is possible to do yourself, however, hiring a real estate agent is advisable. A great real estate agent brings experience and knowledge to your home selling experience, which will help the process go more smoothly and assures you get a fair value for your home. This have left you wondering when choosing a realtor to list your home with, what are the top questions to ask? Your interview process should be involved, ...
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The Cost of Renting vs. Buying [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Cost of Renting vs. Buying [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Historically, the choice between renting or buying a home has been a tough decision. Looking at the percentage of income needed to rent a median-priced home today (28.8%) vs. the percentage needed to buy a median-priced home (17.1%), the choice becomes obvious. Every market is different. Before you renew your lease again, find out if you can put your housing costs to work by buying this year! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Did Tax Reform Kill the Luxury Market? NOT SO FAR!

Did Tax Reform Kill the Luxury Market? NOT SO FAR!

The new tax code limits the deduction of state and local property taxes, as well as income or sales taxes, to a total of $10,000. When the tax reform legislation was put into law at the beginning of the year, some experts felt that it could have a negative impact on the luxury housing market. Capital Economics: “The impact on expensive homes could be detrimental, with a limit on the MID raising taxes for those ...
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Homeowners & Appraisers See the Most Eye-to-Eye on Price in 3 Years

Homeowners & Appraisers See the Most Eye-to-Eye on Price in 3 Years

In today’s housing market, where supply is very low and demand is very high, home values are increasing rapidly. Many experts are projecting that home values could appreciate by another 5% (or more) over the next twelve months. One major challenge in such a market is the bank appraisal. When prices are surging, it is difficult for appraisers to find adequate, comparable sales (similar houses in the same neighborhood that recently closed) to defend the ...
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4 Steps to Follow When Presenting an Offer in Today’s Market!

4 Steps to Follow When Presenting an Offer in Today’s Market!

So, you’ve been searching for that perfect house to call a ‘home,’ and you’ve finally found it! The price is right, and in such a competitive market, you want to make sure that you make a great offer so that you can guarantee that your dream of making this house yours comes true! Below are 4 steps provided by Freddie Mac to help buyers make offers, along with some additional information for your consideration: 1 ...
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4 Reasons Why Summer Is a Great Time to Buy a Home!

4 Reasons Why Summer Is a Great Time to Buy a Home!

Here are four great reasons to consider buying a home today instead of waiting. 1. Prices Will Continue to Rise CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Insights reports that home prices have appreciated by 7% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts that prices will continue to increase at a rate of 5.2% over the next year. Home values will continue to appreciate for years. Waiting no longer makes sense. 2. Mortgage Interest Rates Are Projected to Increase ...
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Top Reasons to Own Your Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

Top Reasons to Own Your Home [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: June is National Homeownership Month! Now is a great time to reflect on the many benefits of homeownership that go way beyond the financial. What reasons do you have to own your own home? Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Will Home Prices Fall as Mortgage Rates Rise?

Will Home Prices Fall as Mortgage Rates Rise?

Mortgage interest rates have increased by more than half of a point since the beginning of the year. They are projected to increase by an additional half of a point by year’s end. Because of this increase in rates, some are guessing that home prices will depreciate. However, some prominent experts in the housing industry doubt that home values will be negatively impacted by the rise in rates. Mark Fleming, First American’s Chief Economist: “Understanding ...
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Millennials Are Skipping Starter Homes for Their Dream Homes

Millennials Are Skipping Starter Homes for Their Dream Homes

A new trend has begun to emerge. With home prices skyrocketing in the starter home category, many first-time homebuyers are skipping the traditional starter homes and moving right into their dream homes. What’s a Starter Home? According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), simply put, a starter home is a one or two-bedroom home (sometimes even a small, three bedroom). “Prices vary widely by market but starters on average cost $150,000 to $250,000 while ...
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5 Reasons Why to Sell This Summer!

5 Reasons Why to Sell This Summer!

Here are five reasons listing your home for sale this summer makes sense. 1. Demand Is Strong The latest Buyer Traffic Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains very strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing and able to purchase…and are in the market right now! More often than not, multiple buyers are competing with each other to buy the same home. Take advantage of the buyer ...
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All Gave Some. Some Gave All.

All Gave Some. Some Gave All.

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Drop in Inventory Fuels Sales Slowdown [INFOGRAPHIC]

Drop in Inventory Fuels Sales Slowdown [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Existing Home Sales are now at an annual pace of 5.46 million. Inventory of existing homes for sale dropped to a 4-month supply, marking the 35th month in a row of declines. The median price of homes sold in April was $257,900. This is the 74th consecutive month of year-over-year price gains. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Selling Your House on Your Own Could Cost You

Selling Your House on Your Own Could Cost You

In this extremely hot real estate market, some homeowners might consider selling their homes on their own which is known as a For Sale by Owner (FSBO). They rationalize that they don’t need a real estate agent and believe that they can save the fee for the services a real estate agent offers. However, a study by Collateral Analytics reveals that FSBOs don’t actually save anything, and in some cases may be costing themselves more, ...
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Why Have Interest Rates Jumped to a 7-Year High?

Why Have Interest Rates Jumped to a 7-Year High?

Interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage have climbed from 3.95% in the first week of January up to 4.61% last week, which marks a 7-year high according to Freddie Mac. The current pace of acceleration has been fueled by many factors. Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist, had this to say: “Healthy consumer spending and higher commodity prices spooked bond markets and led to higher mortgage rates over the past week. Not only ...
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How Current Interest Rates Can Have a High Impact on Your Purchasing Power

How Current Interest Rates Can Have a High Impact on Your Purchasing Power

According to Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey, interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage are currently at 4.61%, which is still near record lows in comparison to recent history! The interest rate you secure when buying a home not only greatly impacts your monthly housing costs, but also impacts your purchasing power. Purchasing power, simply put, is the amount of home you can afford to buy for the budget you have available to spend. As rates increase, ...
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Don’t Wait to Sell Your House! Buyers Are Out Now

Don’t Wait to Sell Your House! Buyers Are Out Now

Recently released data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) suggests that now is a great time to sell your home. The concept of ‘supply & demand’ reveals that the best price for an item is realized when the supply of that item is low and the demand for that item is high. Let’s see how this applies to the current residential real estate market. SUPPLY It is no secret that the supply of homes for ...
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Where Are The Best Places To Take My Guests In Charleston?

Where Are The Best Places To Take My Guests In Charleston?

Options are many when it comes to showing your friends and family the sights and sounds of Charleston. Within a mere 15 minutes, you can go from beach to city to country. The Holy City is steeped in early American history, has an impressive arts, culture and nature scenes, and there’s no end of fun and fine places to eat! Get Outdoors Sullivan’s Island sits on the coast of Mount Pleasant and is an outstanding ...
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Is Your First Home Within Your Grasp Now? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Is Your First Home Within Your Grasp Now? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: According to the US Census Bureau, ‘millennials’ are defined as 18-36-year-olds. According to NAR’s latest Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, the median age of all first-time home buyers is 32. More and more ‘old millennials’ (25-36) are realizing that homeownership is within their grasp now! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Moving Up to Your Dream Home? Don’t Wait!

Moving Up to Your Dream Home? Don’t Wait!

Mortgage interest rates have risen by more than half of a point since the beginning of the year, and many assume that if mortgage rates rise, home values will fall. History, however, has shown this not to be true. Where are home values today compared to the beginning of the year? While rates have been rising, so have home values. Here are the most recent monthly price increases reported in the Home Price Insights Report ...
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Renters Under 50 Want to Buy a Home!

Renters Under 50 Want to Buy a Home!

Every year, the New York Federal Reserve publishes the results of their Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE). Each survey covers a wide range of topics including inflation, labor market, household finance, credit access and housing. One of the many questions asked in the housing section of the survey was: Assuming you had the financial resources to do so, would you like to OWN instead of RENT your primary residence? Over three-quarters of respondents under the ...
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Access: An Important Factor in Getting Your House SOLD!

Access: An Important Factor in Getting Your House SOLD!

So, you’ve decided to sell your house. You’ve hired a real estate professional to help you through the entire process, and they have asked you what level of access you want to provide to your potential buyers. There are four elements to a quality listing. At the top of the list is Access, followed by Condition, Financing, and Price. There are many levels of access that you can provide to your agent so that he ...
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Homeownership: “A Man Is Not a Complete Man, Unless He Owns a House”

Homeownership: “A Man Is Not a Complete Man, Unless He Owns a House”

The famous quote by Walt Whitman, “A man is not a whole and complete man, unless he owns a house and the ground it stands on,” can be used to describe homeownership in America today. The Census revealed that the percentage of homeowners in America has been steadily climbing back up since hitting a 50-year low in 2016. The homeownership rate in the first quarter of 2018 was 64.2%, higher than last year’s 63.6%. Chief Economist, Dr. Ralph ...
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If I'm Looking To Sell My Home, What Renovations Should I Avoid?

If I’m Looking To Sell My Home, What Renovations Should I Avoid?

Do you plan to sell your home and then downgrade or relocate to a different area? Your house definitely may be in need of a makeover before it goes on the market, especially if it is older or has not had adequate repairs in a while. It is important to prepare the home to attract the most appropriate buyer. However, many homeowners make several mistakes when renovating their houses. Learn how to avoid the following ...
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3 Tips for Making Your Dream of Owning a Home a Reality [INFOGRAPHIC]

3 Tips for Making Your Dream of Owning a Home a Reality [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Setting up an automatic savings plan that saves a small amount of every check is one of the best ways to save without thinking much about it. Living within a budget right now will help you save money for down payments while also paying down other debts that might be holding you back. What are you willing to cut back on to make your dreams of homeownership a reality? Powered by WPeMatico ...
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5 Ways Tax Reform Has Impacted the 2018 Housing Market

5 Ways Tax Reform Has Impacted the 2018 Housing Market

Starting late last year, some predicted that the 2018 tax changes would cripple the housing market. Headlines warned of the potential for double-digit price depreciation and suggested that buyer demand could drop like a rock. There was even sentiment that homeownership could lose its coveted status as a major component of the American Dream.  Now that the first quarter numbers are in, we can begin to decipher the actual that impact tax reform has had ...
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Real Estate Tops Best Investment Poll for 5th Year Running

Real Estate Tops Best Investment Poll for 5th Year Running

Every year, Gallup surveys Americans to determine their choice for the best long-term investment. Respondents are given a choice between real estate, stocks/mutual funds, gold, savings accounts/CDs, or bonds. For the fifth year in a row, real estate has come out on top as the best long-term investment! This year’s results showed that 34% of Americans chose real estate, followed by stocks at 26%. The full results are shown in the chart below. The study ...
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Home Inspections: What to Expect

Home Inspections: What to Expect

So you made an offer, it was accepted, and now your next task is to have the home inspected prior to closing. Oftentimes, agents make your offer contingent on a clean home inspection. This contingency allows you to renegotiate the price you paid for the home, ask the sellers to cover repairs, or even, in some cases, walk away. Your agent can advise you on the best course of action once the report is filed. How ...
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What If I Wait Until Next Year to Buy a Home?

What If I Wait Until Next Year to Buy a Home?

We recently shared that national home prices have increased by 6.7% year-over-year. Over that same time period, interest rates have remained historically low which has allowed many buyers to enter the market. As a seller, you will likely be most concerned about ‘short-term price’ – where home values are headed over the next six months. As a buyer, however, you must not be concerned about price, but instead about the ‘long-term cost’ of the home. The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), Freddie Mac, and Fannie ...
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What-Are-The-Top-Things-To-Do-With-Your-Dog-In-Charleston_

What Are The Top Things To Do With Your Dog In Charleston?

Dogs have often always typically been described as man’s best friend. Charleston SC is renowned for it’s fine southern charm, cobblestone streets and architecture, and an exquisite dining experience. The city has also made a name for being one of the most dog-friendly places you will ever visit. Winning the 2016 edition of the Best Pet Travelers City competition attests to this. This may have left yourself wondering, what are the top things to do with ...
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50% of Homes Sold in 30 Days in March [INFOGRAPHIC]

50% of Homes Sold in 30 Days in March [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The National Association of REALTORS® recently surveyed their members for their Confidence Index. The REALTORS® Confidence Index is a key indicator of housing market strength based on a monthly survey sent to over 50,000 real estate practitioners. Practitioners are asked about their expectations for home sales, prices and market conditions. Homes sold in less than 60 days in 35 out of 50 states and Washington D.C. Homes typically went under contract in 30 ...
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4 Reasons Why Today’s Housing Market is NOT 2006 All Over Again

4 Reasons Why Today’s Housing Market is NOT 2006 All Over Again

With home prices rising again this year, some are concerned that we may be repeating the 2006 housing bubble that caused families so much pain when it collapsed. Today’s market is quite different than the bubble market of twelve years ago. There are four key metrics that explain why: Home Prices Mortgage Standards Mortgage Debt Housing Affordability 1. HOME PRICES There is no doubt that home prices have reached 2006 levels in many markets across ...
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This Just In: Data Says May is the Best Month to Sell Your Home

This Just In: Data Says May is the Best Month to Sell Your Home

According to a newly released study by ATTOM Data Solutions, selling your home in the month of May will net you an average of 5.9% above estimated market value for your home. For the study, ATTOM performed an “analysis of 14.7 million home sales from 2011 to 2017” and found the average seller premium achieved for each month of the year. Below is a breakdown by month: ATTOM even went a step further and broke ...
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How Much Has Your Home Increased in Value Over the Last Year?

How Much Has Your Home Increased in Value Over the Last Year?

Home values have risen dramatically over the last twelve months. In CoreLogic’s most recent Home Price Index Report, they revealed that national home prices have increased by 6.7% year-over-year. CoreLogic broke down appreciation even further into four price ranges, giving us a more detailed view than if we had simply looked at the year-over-year increases in national median home price. The chart below shows the four price ranges from the report, as well as each one’s year-over-year growth ...
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Why Home Prices Are Increasing

Why Home Prices Are Increasing

There are many unsubstantiated theories as to why home values are continuing to increase. From those who are worried that lending standards are again becoming too lenient (data shows this is untrue), to those who are concerned that prices are again approaching boom peaks because of “irrational exuberance” (this is also untrue as prices are not at peak levels when they are adjusted for inflation), there seems to be no shortage of opinion. However, the increase in prices is ...
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Existing Home Sales Grow Despite Low Inventory [INFOGRAPHIC]

Existing Home Sales Grow Despite Low Inventory [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: According to the latest Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors, sales grew 1.1% in March to an annual pace of 5.60 million. This is the strongest pace since November of 2017. Inventory levels dropped year-over-year for the 34th consecutive month and are now 7.2% lower than March 2017 levels, representing a 3.6-month supply. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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“Short of a war or stock market crash…”

“Short of a war or stock market crash…”

This month, Arch Mortgage Insurance released their spring Housing and Mortgage Market Review. The report explained that an increase in mortgage rates and/or home prices would impact monthly payments this way: A 5% increase in home prices increases payments by roughly 5% A 1% rise in interest rates increases payments by roughly 13% or 14% That begs the question… What if both rates and prices increase as predicted? The report revealed: “If interest rates and ...
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If-I-Want-To-Start-A-Family-What-Do-I-Need-To-Know-Before-I-Buy-A-Home?

If I Want To Start A Family, What Do I Need To Know Before I Buy A Home?

Making the decision to start a family is one of the most important choices you'll make in your life. It is not something to rush into. Aside from making sure that you are financially ready to support a child, you'll also need to think about your living situation. Here are the primary concerns you'll need to take into consideration when buying a home for your growing family. Your Budget One of the most important factors you'll ...
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New Study Shows ‘Best States for Millennials’

New Study Shows ‘Best States for Millennials’

A new study by WalletHub used “30 key metrics, ranging from share of millennials to millennial unemployment rate to millennial voter-turnout rate” to find out which states are the ‘Best States for Millennials.’ The Top 5 Best States for Millennials are: Washington, D.C. (also ranks highest in percentage of millennials already living there!) North Dakota (lowest unemployment rate) Minnesota (highest millennial homeownership rate) Massachusetts (highest percentage of millennials with health insurance coverage) Iowa (ranked #1 ...
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If-We're-Retiring-And-Looking-For-A-New-Home-What-Do-We-Need-To-Consider?

If We’re Retiring And Looking For A New Home, What Do We Need To Consider?

Retirement brings about numerous changes, with one of the of the most significant changes possibly being your change of  residence. Homeowners who have recently retired or who are planning their final days in the workforce may need to reevaluate their living situations. This might leave thoes retirning and looking for a new home, wondering what they need to consider. Upgrading, downsizing, or even buying a second home can help retirees ensure their families’ future comfort ...
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What-Are-The-Top-Benefits-For-First-Time-Home-Owners?

What Benefits Do First Time Home Owners Enjoy?

Buying and becoming a new homeowner can be a difficult challenge, and an extremely rewarding endeavor once you own your first home. As a new homeowner, you gain access to several different tax benefits for both primary or secondary residents such as vacation homes. With recent changes to the federal tax law, it is important to review how home tax credits were affected. There were many alliterations of the tax bill reported on in the press ...
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In-A-City-Full-Of-Realtors-How-Do-I-Decide-Which-One-To-Go-With?

In A City Full Of Realtors, How Do I Decide Which One To Go With?

Here in Charleston, you may find yourself with a lot of choices when it comes to Realtors and real estate agents. Because of this, it can be difficult to separate the average agents from those who truly excel. Here's what to look for when choosing an agent to represent you in your real estate dealings. Communication Communication is one of the most important skills a Realtor or real estate agent must have, let alone for any ...
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Thinking of Selling Your Home? Why You Need A Pro in Your Corner

Thinking of Selling Your Home? Why You Need A Pro in Your Corner

With home prices on the rise and buyer demand strong, some sellers may be tempted to try and sell their homes on their own (FSBO) without using the services of a real estate professional. Real estate agents are trained and experienced in negotiation and, in most cases, the seller is not. Sellers must realize that their ability to negotiate will determine whether or not they get the best deal for themselves and their families. Here ...
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Buying a Home Is Cheaper Than Renting in the Majority of the US

Buying a Home Is Cheaper Than Renting in the Majority of the US

The results of the 2018 Rental Affordability Report from ATTOM show that buying a median-priced home is more affordable than renting a three-bedroom property in 54% of U.S. counties analyzed for the report. The updated numbers show that renting a three-bedroom property in the United States requires an average of 38.8% of income. The least affordable market for renting was Marin County, CA, just over the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco, where renters spend a staggering 79.5% ...
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Home Buying Myths Slayed [INFOGRAPHIC]

Home Buying Myths Slayed [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The average down payment for first-time homebuyers is only 6%! Despite mortgage interest rates being over 4%, rates are still below historic numbers. 88% of property managers raised their rents in the last 12 months! The credit score requirements for mortgage approval continue to fall. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Is Family Mortgage Debt Out of Control?

Is Family Mortgage Debt Out of Control?

Some homeowners have recently done a “cash out” refinance and have taken a portion of their increased equity from their house. Others have sold their homes and purchased more expensive homes with larger mortgages. At the same time, first-time buyers have become homeowners and now have mortgage payments for the first time. These developments have caused concern that families might be reaching unsustainable levels of mortgage debt. Some are worried that we may be repeating ...
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What-Should-I-Be-On-The-Look-For-During-A-Home-Tour?

What Should I Be On The Look For During A Home Tour?

When it comes to any major purchasing decision like buying a home, you always want to be sure of what you’re getting before you buy. There may not be enough time for you to have a second home tour with friends and family for a different opinion on it. It is therefore vital to have a guideline on the areas to look out for before making a decision. The first tour is essential, and one ...
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Why-Is-Home-Ownership-Important-For-The-American-Economy?

Why Is Home Ownership Important For The American Economy?

Homebuilding and real estate sit at the top of the food chain when it comes to fueling economic growth. Home ownership has been the absolute foundation for wealth building for centuries and the process of constructing homes fuels many sectors of the economy. Once built, those homes continue to support and grow economic activity both locally and nationally. Consider these statistics about homebuilding and homeownership in the U.S. : A Federal Reserve study found that ...
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How Much Do You Need to Make to Buy a Home in Your State?

How Much Do You Need to Make to Buy a Home in Your State?

It’s no mystery that cost of living varies drastically depending on where you live, so a new study by GOBankingRates set out to find out what minimum salary you would need to make in order to buy a median-priced home in each of the 50 states, and Washington, D.C. States in the Midwest came out on top as most affordable, requiring the smallest salaries in order to buy a median-priced home. States with large metropolitan ...
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Rising Prices Help You Build Your Family’s Wealth

Rising Prices Help You Build Your Family’s Wealth

Over the next five years, home prices are expected to appreciate, on average, by 3.6% per year and to grow by 18.2% cumulatively, according to Pulsenomics’ most recent Home Price Expectation Survey. So, what does this mean for homeowners and their equity position? As an example, let’s assume a young couple purchased and closed on a $250,000 home this January. If we only look at the projected increase in the price of that home, how much equity will they ...
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Getting Pre-Approved Should Always Be Your First Step

Getting Pre-Approved Should Always Be Your First Step

In many markets across the country, the number of buyers searching for their dream homes greatly outnumbers the number of homes for sale. This has led to a competitive marketplace where buyers often need to stand out. One way to show you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search. Even if you are in a market that is not as competitive, understanding your budget ...
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A Tale of Two Markets [INFOGRAPHIC]

A Tale of Two Markets [INFOGRAPHIC]

  Some Highlights: A trend that has been emerging for some time now is the contrast between inventory & demand in the Premium & Luxury Markets vs. the Starter & Trade-Up Home Markets and what that’s, in turn, doing to prices! Inventory continues to rise in the luxury & premium home markets which is causing prices to cool. Demand continues to rise with low inventory in the starter & trade-up home markets, causing prices to ...
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The COST of Your Next Home Will Be LESS Than Your Parents’ Home Was

The COST of Your Next Home Will Be LESS Than Your Parents’ Home Was

There is no doubt that the price of a home in most regions of the country is greater now than at any time in history. However, when we look at the cost of a home, it is cheaper to own today than it has been historically. The Difference Between PRICE and COST The price of a home is the dollar amount you and the seller agree to at the time of purchase. The cost of ...
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Mortgage Interest Rates Have Begun to Level Off

Mortgage Interest Rates Have Begun to Level Off

Whether you are a buyer searching for your first home, or a homeowner looking to move up to your next home, you should pay attention to where mortgage interest rates are heading. Over the course of 2018, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, rates have increased from 3.95% in the first week of January to 4.40% in the first week of April. At first glance, the difference between these numbers in such a ...
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What Is Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)?

What Is Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)?

When it comes to buying a home, whether it is your first time or your fifth, it is always important to know all the facts. With the large number of mortgage programs available that allow buyers to purchase homes with down payments below 20%, you can never have too much information about Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). What is PMI? Freddie Mac defines PMI as: “An insurance policy that protects the lender if you are unable to pay your ...
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US Housing Market Still In ‘Buy Territory’!

US Housing Market Still In ‘Buy Territory’!

According to the Beracha, Hardin & Johnson Buy vs. Rent (BH&J) Index, the U.S. housing market has continued to move deeper into buy territory, supporting the belief that housing markets across the country remain a sound investment. The BH&J Index is a quarterly report that attempts to answer the question: In today’s housing market, is it better to rent or buy a home? The index examines the entire US housing market and then isolates 23 major cities for ...
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How Will Interest Rate Changes Affect Real Estate Decisions This Year?

How Will Interest Rate Changes Affect Real Estate Decisions This Year?

As you may have seen in recent national news,  the Federal Reserve will be increasing interest rates. These interest rate increases are predicated on the continuing healthy economy, low unemployment, and the overall good health of the market . This increase in short-term interest does not target specific industries, however it does affect several that use loans as a part of daily business activities. One such industry is the real estate market. The Federal Reserve's actions ...
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VA Loans by the Numbers [INFOGRAPHIC]

VA Loans by the Numbers [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Since the creation of the VA Home Loans Program, 22 million veterans have been able to achieve the American Dream of homeownership. In 2017, $188 billion was loaned to veterans and their families through the program. VA Purchase Loans are on the rise in 46 out of 50 states and Washington, DC. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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House Prices: Simply a Matter of Supply & Demand

House Prices: Simply a Matter of Supply & Demand

Why are home prices still rising? It is a simple answer. There are more purchasers in the market right now than there are available homes for them to buy. This is an example of the theory of “supply and demand” which is defined as: “the amount of a commodity, product, or service available and the desire of buyers for it, considered as factors regulating its price.” When demand exceeds supply, prices go up. This is ...
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Boomerang Buyers: Most Qualify for Financing in 2-3 Years

Boomerang Buyers: Most Qualify for Financing in 2-3 Years

According to a new study from Lending Tree, Americans who have filed for bankruptcy may be able to rebuild enough credit to qualify for a home loan in as little as 2-3 years. This is in stark contrast to the belief that many have that they need to wait 7-10 years for their bankruptcies to clear from their credit reports before attempting to apply for either a mortgage or a personal or auto loan. The ...
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What Should You Look for In Your Real Estate Team?

What Should You Look for In Your Real Estate Team?

How do you select the members of your team who are going to help make your dream of owning a home a reality? What should you be looking for? How do you know if you’ve found the right agent or lender? The most important characteristic that you should be looking for in your agent is someone who is going to take the time to really educate you on the choices available to you and your ...
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NOT Owning Your Home Can Cost You a Lot of Money!

NOT Owning Your Home Can Cost You a Lot of Money!

Owning a home has great financial benefits, yet many continue to rent! Today, let’s look at the financial reasons why owning a home of your own has been a part of the American Dream for as long as America has existed. Realtor.com recently reported that: “Buying remains the more attractive option in the long term – that remains the American dream, and it’s true in many markets where renting has become really the shortsighted option… as people get ...
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The Cost of Renting vs. Buying Today [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Cost of Renting vs. Buying Today [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Historically, the choice between renting or buying a home has been a tough decision. Looking at the percentage of income needed to rent a median-priced home today (28.9%) vs. the percentage needed to buy a median-priced home (15.7%), the choice becomes obvious. Every market is different. Before you renew your lease again, find out if you can put your housing costs to work by buying this year! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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How-Competitive-Will-The-Spring-Home-Buying-Market-Be-This-Year

How Competitive Will The Spring Home Buying Market Be This Year?

Spring is the most common time of the year when people shop for homes. Nonetheless, the spring home-buying season this year could be one of the more competitive in the last couple years. This means prospective home buyers who do not prepare adequately may find themselves in a distressing search. Many housing markets all over the country have recorded fewer homes that are up for sale due to most existing homeowners not moving, and home ...
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99% of Experts Agree: Home Prices Will Increase

99% of Experts Agree: Home Prices Will Increase

Some believe that the combined effects of the new tax code and rising mortgage rates will have an adverse impact on residential real estate prices in 2018. However, the clear majority of recently surveyed housing experts believe that home values will continue to rise this year. What is the Home Price Expectation Survey? Each quarter, Pulsenomics surveys a nationwide panel of economists, real estate experts and investment & market strategists. Those surveyed include experts such ...
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Be Thankful You Don’t Have to Pay Your Parents’ Interest Rate!

Be Thankful You Don’t Have to Pay Your Parents’ Interest Rate!

Interest rates hovered around 4% for the majority of 2017, which gave many buyers relief from rising home prices and helped with affordability. In the first quarter of 2018, rates have increased from 3.95% up to 4.45% and experts predict that rates will increase even more by the end of the year. The rate you secure greatly impacts your monthly mortgage payment and the amount you will ultimately pay for your home. Don’t let the ...
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Buyer Demand Still Outpacing the Supply of Homes for Sale

Buyer Demand Still Outpacing the Supply of Homes for Sale

The price of any item is determined by the supply of that item, as well as market demand. The National Association of REALTORS (NAR) surveys “over 50,000 real estate practitioners about their expectations for home sales, prices and market conditions” for their monthly REALTORS Confidence Index. Their latest edition sheds some light on the relationship between Seller Traffic (supply) and Buyer Traffic (demand). Buyer Demand The map below was created after asking the question: “How would you rate buyer traffic in your area?” ...
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5 Reasons Why to Sell This Spring!

5 Reasons Why to Sell This Spring!

Here are five reasons listing your home for sale this spring makes sense. 1. Demand Is Strong The latest Buyer Traffic Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that buyer demand remains very strong throughout the vast majority of the country. These buyers are ready, willing and able to purchase…and are in the market right now! More often than not, multiple buyers are competing with each other to buy a home. Take advantage ...
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20 Tips for Preparing Your House for Sale This Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

20 Tips for Preparing Your House for Sale This Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

Highlights: When listing your house for sale your top goal will be to get the home sold for the best price possible! There are many small projects that you can do to ensure this happens! Your real estate agent will have a list of specific suggestions for getting your house ready for market and is a great resource for finding local contractors who can help! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Freddie Mac: Rising Mortgage Rates DO NOT Lead to Falling Home Prices

Freddie Mac: Rising Mortgage Rates DO NOT Lead to Falling Home Prices

Recently, Freddie Mac published an Insight Report titled Nowhere to go but up? How increasing mortgage rates could affect housing. The report focused on the impact the projected rise in mortgage rates might have on the housing market this year. Many believe that an increase in mortgage rates will cause a slowdown in purchases which would, in turn, lead to a fall in house values. Ultimately, however, prices are determined by supply and demand and ...
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Whats-The-Best-Way-To-Meet-Neighbors-When-I-Move-Into-A-New-House?

What’s The Best Way To Meet My Neighbors When I Move Into A New House?

One of the hardest parts of moving to a new home (or even a new city like Charleston)  is getting socially acclimated when you move. This is especially true if you've lived in one location for many years and gotten to know your neighbors fairly well. Changing cities or even states uproots your entire social structure and it can be difficult starting over. As an adult with a family, work, and other responsibilities; meeting your ...
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How-Will-Artificial-Intelligence-In-Real-Estate-Affect-Buyers-And-Sellers?

How Will Artificial Intelligence In Real Estate Affect Buyers And Sellers?

  Artificial intelligence. These recently reoccurring buzzwords might conjure up benevolent images like C3PO, R2D2 or even Watson on Jeopardy; while on the other hand they may highlight more malevolent images like the Terminator. Advancements in artificial intelligence are striking and are pointing to changes in several different industries as this technology develops, including even real estate. While AI has lead to some unease due to people fearing their job replacement by AI technology, there ...
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Is a Major Home Renovation Worth It in the Long Run?

Is a Major Home Renovation Worth It in the Long Run?

Last week, we shared “7 Factors To Consider When Choosing A Home To Retire In.” For some homeowners, these seven factors can be taken into account with a home renovation, but is it worth it to remodel or change floor plans? Let’s look at this example. Let’s say you have a 4-bedroom colonial style home in a great school district. The neighborhood is amazing, and you are very comfortable there, but your kids are all ...
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Are You Aware of How Much Equity You Have in Your Home? You May Be Surprised!

Are You Aware of How Much Equity You Have in Your Home? You May Be Surprised!

CoreLogic’s latest Equity Report revealed that 675,000 US homeowners regained positive equity in their homes in 2017. This is great news for the country, as 95.1% of all mortgaged properties are now in a positive equity situation. “U.S homeowners with mortgages (roughly 63% of all the properties) have seen their equity increase by a total of $908.4 billion since the fourth quarter 2016, an increase of 12.2%, year over year.” Price Appreciation = Good News for Homeowners Frank ...
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Dreaming of a Luxury Home? Now’s the Time!

Dreaming of a Luxury Home? Now’s the Time!

If your house no longer fits your needs and you are planning on buying a luxury home, now is a great time to do so! Recently, the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing released its Luxury Market Report which showed that in today’s premium home market, buyers are in control. The inventory of homes for sale in the luxury market far exceeds the number of people searching to purchase these properties in many areas of the ...
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The Cost of Waiting: Interest Rates Edition [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Cost of Waiting: Interest Rates Edition [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Interest rates are projected to increase steadily heading into 2019. The higher your interest rate, the more money you end up paying for your home and the higher your monthly payment will be. Rates are still low right now. Don’t wait until rates hit 5% to start searching for your dream home! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Moving up Is MORE Affordable Now Than Almost Any Other Time in 40 Years

Moving up Is MORE Affordable Now Than Almost Any Other Time in 40 Years

If you are considering selling your current home, to either move up to a larger home or into a home in an area that better suits your current family needs, great news was just revealed. Last week, Trulia posted a blog, Not Your Father’s Housing Market, which examined home affordability over the last 40+ years (1975-2016). Their research revealed that: “Nationally, homes are just about the most affordable they’ve been in the last 40 years… ...
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7 Factors to Consider When Choosing A Home to Retire In

7 Factors to Consider When Choosing A Home to Retire In

As more and more baby boomers enter retirement age, the question of whether or not to sell their homes and move will become a hot topic. In today’s housing market climate, with low available inventory in the starter and trade-up home categories, it makes sense to evaluate your home’s ability to adapt to your needs in retirement. According to the National Association of Exclusive Buyers Agents (NAEBA), there are 7 factors that you should consider ...
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You Can Save for a Down Payment Faster Than You Think!

You Can Save for a Down Payment Faster Than You Think!

Saving for a down payment is often the biggest hurdle for a first-time homebuyer. Depending on where you live, median income, median rents, and home prices all vary. So, we set out to find out how long it would take to save for a down payment in each state. Using data from the United States Census Bureau and Zillow, we determined how long it would take, nationwide, for a first-time buyer to save enough money ...
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4 Reasons Spring is a Great Time to Buy a Home!

4 Reasons Spring is a Great Time to Buy a Home!

Here are four great reasons to consider buying a home today instead of waiting. Prices Will Continue to Rise CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index reports that home prices have appreciated by 6.6% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts that prices will continue to increase at a rate of 4.3% over the next year. The bottom in home prices has come and gone. Home values will continue to appreciate for years. Waiting no longer makes sense ...
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The Difference an Hour Will Make This Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Difference an Hour Will Make This Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Don’t forget to set your clocks forward this Sunday, March 11th at 2:00 AM EST in observance of Daylight Saving Time. Unless of course, you are a resident of Arizona or Hawaii! Every hour in the United States: 614 homes are sold, 81 homes regain equity (meaning they are no longer underwater on their mortgage), and the median home price rises $1.51! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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A New Housing Bubble Forming…Not Before 2024!

A New Housing Bubble Forming…Not Before 2024!

A recent report by CoreLogic revealed that U.S. home values appreciated by more than 37% over the last five years. Some are concerned that this is evidence we may be on the verge of another housing “boom & bust” like the one we experienced from 2006-2008. Recently, several housing experts weighed in on the subject to alleviate these fears. Sean Becketti, Freddie Mac Chief Economist  “The evidence indicates there currently is no house price bubble ...
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Home Prices: The Difference 5 Years Makes

Home Prices: The Difference 5 Years Makes

The economists at CoreLogic recently released a special report entitled, Evaluating the Housing Market Since the Great Recession. The goal of the report was to look at economic recovery since the Great Recession of December 2007 through June 2009. One of the key indicators used in the report to determine the health of the housing market was home price appreciation. CoreLogic focused on appreciation from December 2012 to December 2017 to show how prices over ...
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Competition is Coming, Are You Thinking of Selling Your Home?

Competition is Coming, Are You Thinking of Selling Your Home?

The number of building permits issued for single-family homes is the best indicator of how many newly built homes will rise over the next few months. According to the latest U.S. Census Bureau and U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development Residential Sales Report, the number of these permits were up 7.4% over last year. How will this impact buyers? More inventory means more options. Lawrence Yun, NAR’s Chief Economist, explained this is good news ...
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Housing Market Expected To “Spring Forward” This Year

Housing Market Expected To “Spring Forward” This Year

Just like our clocks this weekend in the majority of the country, the housing market will soon “spring forward!” Similar to tension in a spring, the lack of inventory available for sale in the market right now is what is holding back the market. Many potential sellers believe that waiting until Spring is in their best interest, and traditionally they would have been right. Buyer demand has seasonality to it, which usually falls off in the winter ...
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4 Reasons to Sell This Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

4 Reasons to Sell This Spring [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Buyer demand continues to outpace the supply of homes for sale which means that buyers are often competing with one another for the few listings that are available! Housing inventory is still under the 6-month supply needed to sustain a normal housing market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Are Home Values Really Overinflated?

Are Home Values Really Overinflated?

Last week, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) released their most recent Existing Home Sales Report. According to the report: “The median existing-home price for all housing types in January was $240,500, up 5.8 percent from January 2017 ($227,300). January’s price increase marks the 71st straight month of year-over-year gains.” Seventy-one consecutive months of price increases may have some concerned that current home values may be overinflated. However, at the same time, Zillow issued a ...
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If I'm Looking At Buying A Home, How Can I Optimize My Credit Score For Applying For A Loan?

If I’m Looking At Buying A Home, How Can I Optimize My Credit Score For Applying For A Loan?

When buying a home, especially if you are a first-time homebuyer, having good (or great) credit is important. Having a poor credit score could prevent you from buying the home of your dreams. This alone might have you wondering if you're looking at buying a home, how can I optimize my credit score for applying for a loan? Before you even start looking at homes, you should know what your credit score is to avoid ...
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It’s Tax Season… Use Your Refund to Jump Start Your Down Payment Savings!

It’s Tax Season… Use Your Refund to Jump Start Your Down Payment Savings!

According to data released by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Americans can expect an estimated average refund of $2,840 this year when filing their taxes. This is down slightly from the average refund of $2,895, last year. Tax refunds are often thought of as ‘extra money’ that can be used toward larger goals; for anyone looking to buy a home in 2018, this can be a great jump start toward a down payment! The map ...
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Is Now a Good Time to Rent?

Is Now a Good Time to Rent?

People often ask if now is a good time to buy a home, but nobody ever asks when it’s a good time to rent. Regardless, we want to make certain that everyone understands that today is NOT a good time to rent. The Census Bureau recently released their 2017 fourth quarter median rent numbers. Here is a graph showing rent increases from 1988 until today: As you can see, rents have steadily increased and are showing no signs ...
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Latest NAR Data Shows Now Is a Great Time to Sell!

Latest NAR Data Shows Now Is a Great Time to Sell!

We all realize that the best time to sell anything is when demand for that item is high, and the supply of that item is limited. Two major reports released by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) revealed information that suggests that now is a great time to sell your house. Let’s look at the data covered in the latest REALTORS® Confidence Index and Existing Home Sales Report. REALTORS® CONFIDENCE INDEX Every month, NAR surveys “over 50,000 real estate practitioners about their expectations for home ...
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The Mortgage Process: What You Need to Know [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Mortgage Process: What You Need to Know [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Many buyers are purchasing a home with a down payment as little as 3%. You may already qualify for a loan, even if you don’t have perfect credit. Take advantage of the knowledge of your local professionals who are there to help you determine how much you can afford. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Mortgage Rates on FIRE! Home Prices Up in Smoke?

Mortgage Rates on FIRE! Home Prices Up in Smoke?

Mortgage interest rates have already risen by over a quarter of a percentage point in 2018. Many are projecting that rates could increase to 5% by the end of the year. What impact will rising rates have on house values? Many quickly jump to the conclusion that an increase in mortgage rates will have a detrimental impact on real estate prices as fewer buyers will be able to qualify for a loan. This seems logical; ...
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80% of Renters Believe Homeownership is a Part of Their American Dream

80% of Renters Believe Homeownership is a Part of Their American Dream

According to the latest Aspiring Home Buyers Profile by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), 82% of surveyed renters desire to own a home in the future, with 80% believing homeownership is a big part of achieving their American Dream. The profile went on to state that 50% of millennials believe that their rent will increase, with 20% believing that an increase in rent will be the catalyst that pushes them to consider buying a ...
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2 Ways to Get the Most Money from The Sale of Your Home

2 Ways to Get the Most Money from The Sale of Your Home

Every homeowner wants to make sure they maximize their financial reward when selling their home. But how do you guarantee that you receive the maximum value for your house? Here are two keys to ensure that you get the highest price possible. 1. Price it a LITTLE LOW  This may seem counterintuitive, but let’s look at this concept for a moment. Many homeowners think that pricing their homes a little OVER market value will leave ...
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Top 5 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Professional When Buying or Selling!

Top 5 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Professional When Buying or Selling!

Whether you are buying or selling a home it can be quite the adventure, which is why you need an experienced real estate professional to guide you on the path to achieving your ultimate goal. But in this world of instant gratification and internet searches, many sellers think that they can ‘For Sale by Owner’ or ‘FSBO.’ The 5 reasons you NEED a real estate professional in your corner haven’t changed but have rather been strengthened by ...
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Should I Wait Until Next Year to Buy? Or Buy Now? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Should I Wait Until Next Year to Buy? Or Buy Now? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The Cost of Waiting to Buy is defined as the additional funds it would take to buy a home if prices & interest rates were to increase over a period of time. Freddie Mac predicts interest rates to rise to 5.1% by 2019. CoreLogic predicts home prices to appreciate by 4.3% over the next 12 months. If you are ready and willing to buy your dream home, find out if you are able ...
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Calm Down! The Real Estate Market is NOT Falling Apart

Calm Down! The Real Estate Market is NOT Falling Apart

There has been tremendous volatility in certain markets over the last few weeks (for example, the stock and currency markets). When this happens, some tend to lump all of their investments together and create an almost ‘Armageddon’ scenario where everything loses value quickly and dramatically. Real estate is an investment that can get caught up in this hysteria. Does the concern about the current housing market have merit? Financial advisors have been warning us for ...
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Which Comes First… Marriage or Mortgage?

Which Comes First… Marriage or Mortgage?

According to the National Association of REALTORS most recent Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, married couples once again dominated the first-time homebuyer statistics in 2017 at 57% of all buyers. It is no surprise that having two incomes to save for down payments and contribute to monthly housing costs makes buying a home more attainable. But, many couples are also deciding to buy a home before spending what would be a down payment on a wedding, as unmarried ...
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Low Inventory Pushes Home Prices Higher

Low Inventory Pushes Home Prices Higher

According to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index, prices appreciated by 6.9% year-over-year from December 2016 to December 2017 on a national level. This marks the fifth month in a row with at least a 6.9% increase. Dr. Frank Nothaft, Chief Economist for CoreLogic, gave insight into the reason behind the large appreciation, “The number of homes for sale has remained very low. Job growth lowered the unemployment rate to 4.1 percent by year’s end, the ...
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The #1 Reason to Sell Now Before Spring

The #1 Reason to Sell Now Before Spring

The price of any item (including residential real estate) is determined by ‘supply and demand.’ If many people are looking to buy an item and the supply of that item is limited, the price of that item increases. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the supply of homes for sale dramatically increases every spring. As an example, here is what happened to housing inventory at the beginning of 2017: Putting your home on the market now ...
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5 Reasons to Love Using A Real Estate Pro [INFOGRAPHIC]

5 Reasons to Love Using A Real Estate Pro [INFOGRAPHIC]

Highlights: Hiring a real estate professional to guide you through the process of buying a home or selling your house can be one of the best decisions you make! They are there for you to help with paperwork, understanding the process, negotiations, and helping you with pricing (both when making an offer or setting the right price for your home). One of the top reasons to hire a real estate professional is their understanding of ...
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Homeownership: “The Reports of My Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated”

Homeownership: “The Reports of My Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated”

The famous quote by Mark Twain in the title of this article can be used to describe homeownership in America today. Last week, the Census revealed that the percentage of homeowners in the country increased for the first time in thirteen years. A story in the Wall Street Journal gave these new homeownership numbers some context: “The annual increase marks a crucial turning point because it comes after the federal government reined in bubble-era policies ...
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What Are The Top Home Problems That Can Ward Off Potential Buyers?

What Are The Top Home Problems That Can Ward Off Potential Buyers?

One of the busiest times of the year for home buying is just a few short months away. If you’re considering selling your home, you're likely wondering what are the top possible home problems that can ward of potential buyers. Be aware that preparation is everything. Now (and not later) is the time to address the issues around your home that could hamper your efforts to sell to eager buyers. While there may be more obvious items like ...
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Where Are Mortgage Interest Rates Headed in 2018?

Where Are Mortgage Interest Rates Headed in 2018?

The interest rate you pay on your home mortgage has a direct impact on your monthly payment. The higher the rate the greater the payment will be. That is why it is important to know where rates are headed when deciding to start your home search. Below is a chart created using Freddie Mac’s U.S. Economic & Housing Marketing Outlook. As you can see, interest rates are projected to increase steadily over the course of the ...
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Millionaire to Millennials: Don’t Rent a Home… Buy!

Millionaire to Millennials: Don’t Rent a Home… Buy!

In a CNBC article, self-made millionaire David Bach explained that: “The biggest mistake millennials are making is not buying their first home.” He goes on to say that, “If you want to build real financial security, real wealth for your lifetime, then you need to buy a home.” Bach went on to explain: “Homeowners are worth 40 times more than renters. Now, that first home doesn’t need to be a dream home, it can be a very small ...
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Whether You Rent or Buy, Either Way You’re Paying a Mortgage!

Whether You Rent or Buy, Either Way You’re Paying a Mortgage!

There are some people who have not purchased homes because they are uncomfortable taking on the obligation of a mortgage. Everyone should realize, however, that unless you are living with your parents rent-free, you are paying a mortgage – either yours or your landlord’s. As Entrepreneur Magazine, a premier source for small business, explained in their article, “12 Practical Steps to Getting Rich”: “While renting on a temporary basis isn’t terrible, you should most certainly own the roof over ...
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5 Reasons Homeowners Can Throw Better Super Bowl Parties! [INFOGRAPHIC]

5 Reasons Homeowners Can Throw Better Super Bowl Parties! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Highlights: Watching the big game at home with your friends & family offers many advantages. There’s more room to entertain a large crowd and you don’t have to worry about complaints to your landlord if you cheer too loudly! The kitchen is big enough to make as many appetizers as you want, and if some of your guests are only there to watch the commercials, they can do so on a different TV in another ...
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Bidding Wars Abound… How Long Will They Continue?

Bidding Wars Abound… How Long Will They Continue?

Just like with any product or service, the law of supply and demand impacts home prices. Any time that there is less supply than the market demands, prices increase. In many areas of the country, the supply of homes for sale in the starter and trade-up home markets is so low that bidding wars have ensued, and the busy spring-buying season is just around the corner. CoreLogic recently conducted an analysis on national home prices ...
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How-Do-You-Winterize-A-House-In-Charleston?

How Do You Winterize A House In Charleston?

Snow and freezing temperatures in Charleston? They may not occur year round in the Holy City (nor is it the image that first comes to mind when you consider Charleston), but this is a topic numerous homeowners need to be aware of; especially due to the recent events of Snowmageddon. When winter strikes, if you are not prepared damages to your home can be possible. However, this can be avoided if the right measures are put ...
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Study Shows “Millennials Deserve More Credit”

Study Shows “Millennials Deserve More Credit”

When it comes to talking about millennials, there are many stereotypes out there that have influenced the way the public feels about the generation. Whether it’s the assumption that millennials are irresponsible with money and would rather buy avocado toast than save for a down payment, or that millennials jump from job to job, the majority of these stereotypes paint the generation in a negative light. A new study by Bank of America entitled Better ...
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2 Major Myths Holding Back Home Buyers

2 Major Myths Holding Back Home Buyers

Urban Institute recently released a report entitled, “Barriers to Accessing Homeownership,” which revealed that “eighty percent of consumers either are unaware of how much lenders require for a down payment or believe all lenders require a down payment above 5 percent.” Myth #1: “I Need a 20% Down Payment” Buyers often overestimate the down payment funds needed to qualify for a home loan. According to the same report: “Consumers are often unaware of the option to ...
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U.S. Housing Inventory Crunch Continues… List Your House Today!

U.S. Housing Inventory Crunch Continues… List Your House Today!

Every winter, families across the country decide if this will be the year that they sell their current houses and move into their dream homes. Mortgage rates hovered around 4% for all of 2017 which forced many buyers off the fence and into the market, resulting in incredibly strong demand RIGHT NOW! At the same time, however, inventory levels of homes for sale have dropped dramatically as compared to this time last year. Trulia reported that “in ...
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5 Reasons Millennials Choose to Buy [INFOGRAPHIC]

5 Reasons Millennials Choose to Buy [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: “The majority of millennials said they consider owning a home more sensible than renting for both financial and lifestyle reasons — including control of living space, flexibility in future decisions, privacy and security, and living in a nice home.” The top reason millennials choose to buy is to have control over their living space, at 93%. Many millennials who rent a home or apartment prior to buying their own homes dream of the ...
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If You’re Considering Selling, ACT NOW!!

If You’re Considering Selling, ACT NOW!!

Definitely an aggressive headline. However, as the final data on the 2017 housing market rolls in, we can definitely say one thing: If you are considering selling, IT IS TIME TO LIST YOUR HOME! How did we finish 2017? New-home sales were at their highest level in a decade. Sales of previously owned homes were at their highest level in more than a decade. Starts of single-family homes were their strongest in a decade and ...
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What-Is-There-To-Love-About-Sullivan's-Island-And-Mount-Pleasant?

What Is There To Love About Sullivan’s Island And Mount Pleasant?

Whether you live here or visit, no Charleston experience is complete without a trip to Mount Pleasant and Sullivan’s Island. Both represent the early history of the area and many of the early residences and plantations are still intact. Both places provide a glimpse into the history of the area from architecture to food. Mount Pleasant Discover the history. As one of the nation’s oldest cities, you’ll find plenty of places to experience the earliest ...
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Gap Between Homeowners & Appraisers Narrows to Lowest Mark in 2 Years

Gap Between Homeowners & Appraisers Narrows to Lowest Mark in 2 Years

In today’s housing market, where supply is very low and demand is very high, home values are increasing rapidly. Many experts are projecting that home values could appreciate by another 4% or more over the next twelve months. One major challenge in such a market is the bank appraisal. When prices are surging, it is difficult for appraisers to find adequate, comparable sales (similar houses in the neighborhood that recently closed) to defend the selling ...
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Why You Need a Professional on Your Team When Buying a Home

Why You Need a Professional on Your Team When Buying a Home

Many people wonder whether they should hire a real estate professional to assist them in buying their dream homes or if they should first try to go through the buying process on their own. In today’s market: you need an experienced professional! You Need an Expert Guide If You Are Traveling a Dangerous Path The field of real estate is loaded with landmines; you need a true expert to guide you through the dangerous pitfalls ...
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Buying A Home Is More Affordable Than Renting In 54% Of US Counties

Buying A Home Is More Affordable Than Renting In 54% Of US Counties

According to ATTOM Data Solutions’ 2018 Rental Affordability Report, “buying a median-priced home is more affordable than renting a three-bedroom property in 240 of 447 [or 54% of] U.S. counties analyzed for the report.” For the report, ATTOM Data Solutions compared recently released fair market rent data from the Department of Housing and Urban Development with reported income amounts from the Department of Labor and Statistics to determine the percentage of income that a family would have to spend on their monthly housing ...
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Where Did Americans Move in 2017? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Where Did Americans Move in 2017? [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Atlas Van Lines recently released the results of their annual Migration Patterns Survey in which they tracked their customer’s movement from state-to-state over the course of 2017. Idaho held on to the top spot of ‘high inbound’ states for the 2nd year in a row followed by Washington. The ‘outbound’ states seem to draw a line straight across the country from Connecticut to Wyoming. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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What Impact Will the New Tax Code Have on Home Values?

What Impact Will the New Tax Code Have on Home Values?

Every month, CoreLogic releases its Home Price Insights Report. In that report, they forecast where they believe residential real estate prices will be in twelve months. Below is a map, broken down by state, reflecting how home values are forecasted to change by the end of 2018 using data from the most recent report. As we can see, CoreLogic projects an increase in home values in 49 of 50 states, and Washington, DC (there was insufficient ...
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61% of First-Time Buyers Put Down Less than 6%

61% of First-Time Buyers Put Down Less than 6%

According to the National Association of Realtors’ latest Realtors Confidence Index, 61% of first-time homebuyers purchased their homes with down payments below 6% from October 2016 through November 2017. Many potential homebuyers believe that a 20% down payment is necessary to buy a home and have disqualified themselves without even trying. The median down payment for all buyers in 2017 was just 10% and that percentage drops to 6% for first-time buyers. Zillow Senior Economist ...
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Wondering If You Can Buy Your First Home?

Wondering If You Can Buy Your First Home?

There are many people sitting on the sidelines trying to decide if they should purchase a home or sign a rental lease. Some might wonder if it makes sense to purchase a house before they are married and have a family, others might think they are too young, and still, others might think their current income would never enable them to qualify for a mortgage. We want to share what the typical first-time homebuyer actually ...
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Thinking of Selling? Now is the Perfect Time

Thinking of Selling? Now is the Perfect Time

It is common knowledge that a great number of homes sell during the spring-buying season. For that reason, many homeowners hold off on putting their homes on the market until then. The question is whether or not that will be a good strategy this year. The other listings that do come out in the spring will represent increased competition to any seller. Do a greater number of homes actually come to the market in the ...
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The Impact Staging Your Home Has on Sales Price [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Impact Staging Your Home Has on Sales Price [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The National Association of Realtors surveyed their members & released the findings of their Annual Profile of Home Staging. 50% of staged homes saw a 1-10% increase in dollar value offers from buyers. 77% of buyer’s agents said staging made it easier for buyers to visualize the home as their own. The top rooms to stage in order to attract more buyers are the living room, master bedroom, kitchen, and dining room. Powered ...
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93% Believe Homeownership Is Important in Attaining the American Dream

93% Believe Homeownership Is Important in Attaining the American Dream

Americans continue to believe that homeownership is important in achieving the American Dream. A recent survey by NeighborWorks America reported that: “Owning a home remains a core element of the American Dream.” When asked “How important a part of the American dream is owning a home?” 18% of those surveyed said it was the most important part 53% of those surveyed said it was very important 22% of those surveyed said it was somewhat important ...
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FICO® Scores on Approved Home Loans Drop Again

FICO® Scores on Approved Home Loans Drop Again

According to Ellie Mae’s latest Origination Report, the average FICO® Score on all closed loans dropped to 722 which is its lowest mark since April. The average includes all approved refinance and purchase loans. FHA and VA loans showed the most opportunity for millennials looking to enter the market with low down payments and even lower FICO® Score requirements. Ellie Mae’s Millennial Tracker revealed that those who purchased homes in December with an FHA Loan ...
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The Impact of Tight Inventory on the Housing Market

The Impact of Tight Inventory on the Housing Market

The housing crisis is finally in the rear-view mirror as the real estate market moves down the road to a complete recovery. Home values are up, home sales are up, and distressed sales (foreclosures and short sales) have fallen to their lowest points in years. It seems that the market will continue to strengthen in 2018. However, there is one thing that may cause the industry to tap the brakes: a lack of housing inventory ...
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712,000 Homes in the US Regained Equity in the Past 12 Months!

712,000 Homes in the US Regained Equity in the Past 12 Months!

CoreLogic’s latest Equity Report revealed that “over the past 12 months, 712,000 borrowers moved into positive equity.” This is great news, as the share of homeowners with negative equity (those who owe more than their home is worth), has dropped more than 20% since the peak in Q4 of 2009 (26%) to 4.9% today. The report also revealed: The average homeowner gained approximately $14,900 in equity during the past year. Compared to Q3 2016, negative ...
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4 Reasons to Sell This Winter [INFOGRAPHIC]

4 Reasons to Sell This Winter [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Buyer demand continues to outpace the supply of homes for sale which means that buyers are often competing with one another for the few listings that are available! Housing inventory is still under the 6-month supply needed to sustain a normal housing market. Perhaps the time has come for you and your family to move on and start living the life you desire. Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Time on the Market Drops to New Low in 2017

Time on the Market Drops to New Low in 2017

According to recently released data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the median amount of time a home spent on the market hit an all-time low of only three weeks in 2017. Strong buyer demand, a good economy, and a low inventory of new and existing homes for sale created the perfect storm to accelerate the time between listing and signing a contract. The time needed to sell a home has dropped substantially since ...
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The Benefits of Homeownership Go Beyond the Financial

The Benefits of Homeownership Go Beyond the Financial

Homeownership is a major part of the American Dream. As evidence of that, 91% of Americans believe that owning a home is either essential (43%) or important (48%) to achieving that “dream.” In a market where some people may be unsure about the benefits and possibilities of buying a home, it is important that we remember this. Homeownership is NOT just about the money. In fact, some of the major benefits are non-financial. Here are ...
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How Rising Prices Will Help You Build Family Wealth in 2018

How Rising Prices Will Help You Build Family Wealth in 2018

Over the next five years, home prices are expected to appreciate on average by 3.35% per year and to grow by 24.34% cumulatively, according to Pulsenomics’ most recent Home Price Expectation Survey. So, what does this mean for homeowners and their equity position? As an example, let’s assume a young couple purchases and closes on a $250,000 home this month (January). If we only look at the projected increase in the price of that home, how much equity will ...
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Here’s to a Wonderful 2018!

Here’s to a Wonderful 2018!

We hope 2018 is a great year for you, both personally and professionally!Powered by WPeMatico ...
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Buying or Selling in 2018? 5 Reasons to Resolve to Hire a Pro [INFOGRAPHIC]

Buying or Selling in 2018? 5 Reasons to Resolve to Hire a Pro [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: As we usher in the new year, one thing is for certain… if you plan to buy or sell a house this year, you need a real estate professional on your team! There are many benefits to using a local professional! Pick a professional who knows your local market and can help you achieve your dreams! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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There’s More to a Bubble Than Rising Home Prices

There’s More to a Bubble Than Rising Home Prices

What truly causes a housing bubble and the inevitable crash? For the best explanation, let’s go to a person who correctly called the last housing bubble – a year before it happened. “A bubble requires both overvaluation based on fundamentals and speculation. It is natural to focus on an asset’s fundamental value, but the real key for detecting a bubble is speculation…Speculation tends to chase appreciating assets, and then speculation begets more speculation, until finally, ...
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Top 4 REAL Reasons We Buy a Home

Top 4 REAL Reasons We Buy a Home

We often talk about the financial reasons why buying a home makes sense. But, more often than not, the emotional reasons are the more powerful or compelling reasons. No matter what shape or size your living space is, the concept and feeling of home can mean different things to different people. Whether it’s a certain scent or a favorite chair, the emotional reasons why we choose to buy our own homes are typically more important ...
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Top 5 Reasons You Shouldn’t FSBO

Top 5 Reasons You Shouldn’t FSBO

In today’s market, with home prices rising and a lack of inventory, some homeowners may consider trying to sell their home on their own, known in the industry as a For Sale by Owner (FSBO). There are several reasons why this might not be a good idea for the vast majority of sellers. Here are the top five reasons: 1. Exposure to Prospective Buyers Recent studies have shown that 95% of buyers search online for ...
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Thank You for All Your Support

Thank You for All Your Support

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Existing Home Sales Reach Highest Annual Pace in 11 Years [INFOGRAPHIC]

Existing Home Sales Reach Highest Annual Pace in 11 Years [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Existing home sales are currently at an annual pace of 5.81 million, the highest pace since December 2006. The inventory of existing homes for sale has dropped year-over-year for the last 30 consecutive months and is now at a 3.4-month supply. NAR’s Chief Economist Lawrence Yun had this to say: “Faster economic growth in recent quarters, the booming stock market and continuous job gains are fueling substantial demand for buying a home as 2017 comes ...
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Housing Prices are NOT Heading for Another Crash

Housing Prices are NOT Heading for Another Crash

As home values continue to increase at levels greater than historic norms, some are concerned that we are heading for another crash like the one we experienced ten years ago. We recently explained that the lenient lending standards of the previous decade (which created false demand) no longer exist. But what about prices? Are prices appreciating at the same rate that they were prior to the crash of 2006-2008? Let’s look at the numbers as ...
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Top 5 Benefits of Hiring a Real Estate Agent

Top 5 Benefits of Hiring a Real Estate Agent

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) recently released their 2017 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers in which they surveyed recent home buyers and sellers about their experiences. An entire section of the profile is dedicated to buyers’ experiences with their real estate agents. If you are looking to buy in 2018, here are the top 5 benefits of using a real estate agent when buying your dream home as cited by recent buyers: 1 ...
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Rents Are on the Rise: Don’t Get Caught in the Rental Trap!

Rents Are on the Rise: Don’t Get Caught in the Rental Trap!

There are many benefits to homeownership. One of the top benefits is protecting yourself from rising rents, by locking in your housing cost for the life of your mortgage. Don’t Become Trapped  A recent article by Apartment List addressed rising rents by stating: “Rents are up 2.7% year-over-year at the national level. Year-over-year growth continues to fall between the 2.1% rate from this time last year and the 3.4% growth rate from October 2015.” The ...
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4 Reasons to Buy a Home This Winter!

4 Reasons to Buy a Home This Winter!

Here are four great reasons to consider buying a home today instead of waiting. 1. Prices Will Continue to Rise CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index reports that home prices have appreciated by 7.0% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts that prices will continue to increase at a rate of 4.7% over the next year. The bottom in home prices has come and gone. Home values will continue to appreciate for years. Waiting ...
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Home Prices Up 6.54% Across the Country! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Home Prices Up 6.54% Across the Country! [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) recently released their latest Quarterly Home Price Index report. In the report, home prices are compared both regionally and by state. Based on the latest numbers, if you plan on relocating to another state, waiting to move may end up costing you more! Powered by WPeMatico ...
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How-Can-The-Tax-Plan-Affect-The-Real-Estate-Market

How Can The Tax Plan Affect The Real Estate Market?

If you’ve been watching the news lately, you might have heard some items about the tax plan currently being proposed in Congress and what it’s possible effects could be on the real estate industry. There have been warnings of decline in home prices echoed by the National Association of Home Builders and National Association of Realtors. The two bodies cited the expensive coastal markets as some of the places that could feel the effect of ...
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Should Boomers Buy or Rent after Selling?

Should Boomers Buy or Rent after Selling?

In a recent CNBC article, it was reported that many baby boomers are selling their current homes and moving into rentals, rather than purchasing another home. “Between 2009 and 2015, the number of renters aged 55 or above rose 28 percent, while those aged 34 or younger only increased 3 percent… Meanwhile, more than 5 million baby boomers across the nation are expected to rent their next home by 2020, according to a 2016 analysis from ...
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What is the Cost of Waiting Until Next Year to Buy?

What is the Cost of Waiting Until Next Year to Buy?

We recently shared that over the course of the last 12 months, home prices have appreciated by 7.0%. Over the same amount of time, interest rates have remained historically low which has allowed many buyers to enter the market. As a seller, you will likely be most concerned about ‘short-term price’ – where home values are headed over the next six months. As a buyer, however, you must not be concerned about price, but instead ...
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Before You Make an Offer, Here Are 4 Tips for Success!

Before You Make an Offer, Here Are 4 Tips for Success!

So, you’ve been searching for that perfect house to call a ‘home,’ and you finally found it! The price is right, and in such a competitive market, you want to make sure that you make a good offer so that you can guarantee that your dream of making this house yours comes true! Freddie Mac covered “4 Tips for Making an Offer” in their Executive Perspective. Here are the 4 tips they covered along with some additional information ...
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Why Getting Pre-Approved Should Be Your First Step

Why Getting Pre-Approved Should Be Your First Step

In many markets across the country, the number of buyers searching for their dream homes greatly outnumbers the number of homes for sale. This has led to a competitive marketplace where buyers often need to stand out. One way to show you are serious about buying your dream home is to get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage before starting your search. Even if you are in a market that is not as competitive, knowing your ...
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If I'm Buying In The Winter, What Do I Need To Know?

If I’m Buying In The Winter, What Do I Need To Know?

People have different preferences when it comes to buying houses  during winter in Charleston. Some prefer to hold on until the winter is over, whereas others seize the available opportunity since they have decided to remain active. In as much as you would want to make a real estate purchase during the winter, you need to be very strategic. Comparatively, buying a house in winter is less thrilling than what that substantial acquisition would likely ...
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Top Steps To Prepare For Buying A House In 2018

Top Steps To Prepare For Buying A House In 2018

The process of buying a home can be scary, owing to the process and commitments involved. But going through the preparatory stages enlightens you on how best to go through each stage. Buying a house can be a big and marvelous investment. It is, therefore vital to prepare yourself adequately for this process. This guide will take you through the basics of what you need to know now in order to buy a house in ...
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3 Tips for Making Your Dream Home a Reality [INFOGRAPHIC]

3 Tips for Making Your Dream Home a Reality [INFOGRAPHIC]

Some Highlights: Realtor.com shared their “5 Habits to Start Now If You Hope to Buy a Home.” Setting up an automatic savings plan that saves a small amount of every check is one of the best ways to save without thinking a lot about it. Living within a budget will not only help you save money for down payments but will help you pay down other debts that might be holding you back. Powered by ...
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The #1 Reason to List Your House Today!

The #1 Reason to List Your House Today!

Many people believe that selling their house during “the spring buyers’ market” is the best thing to do. Their reasoning is that there will be more buyers than there are during the winter months and, therefore, their house will sell quicker and for a higher price. Historically, this made sense. However, today’s real estate market is not following the rules of the past. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) measures buyer “foot traffic” each month ...
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Home Prices Up 7% from Last Year

Home Prices Up 7% from Last Year

According to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index, national home prices have appreciated by 7.0% from October 2016 to October 2017. This marks the second month in a row with a 7.0% year-over-year increase. A lack of supply of homes for sale has led to upward pressure on home prices across the country, especially in areas where both existing and new home inventory have not kept up with buyer demand. CoreLogic’s Chief Economist Frank Nothaft elaborated ...
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What-Should-I-Ask-A-Listing-Agent-During-An-Open-House?

What Should I Ask A Listing Agent During An Open House?

An open house offers arguably one of the best shopping experiences in the real estate space. In fact, it provides an opportunity for numerous potential home buyers to view a variety of houses without the need for an appointment. Aside from giving the much-desired sneak peek into the potential house, it allows you to make valuable queries that delve deeper into various aspects of the house. In case, you are wondering what sort of queries you ...
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What-Makes-A-Neighborhood-Great?

What Makes A Neighborhood Great?

To both tourists and locals, Charleston SC is not just a top travel destination, but also a vibrant place to live in and work. Being one of the gems of the East Coast, the neighborhoods here present a mix of activity, world-class restaurants, history, and beauty. In fact, the job industry here is mostly military, technology, and tourism. However, do not make the mistake of settling for any home that hits the market. Understand that choosing ...
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How-To-Better-Your-Chances-For-An-Open-House-Success?

How to Better Your Chances For An Open House Success?

Starting your new home search nowadays typically means first looking online through multiple pages of pictures and reading paragraphs of descriptions. While you will find some exciting properties through this search, you may want to use a traditional method when it's time to make an offer.  What typically works best and gives the best source of information about a house is performing a traditional walk-through during an open house. This then leads some wonder how ...
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What-Are-The-Top-Mistakes-Buyers-Make-In-A-Seller's-Market?

What Are The Top Mistakes Buyers Make In A Seller’s Market?

The U.S economy is projected to experience a 2.0% growth throughout 2017. Only 62% of new homes, together with existing residential properties, were regarded as affordable to the average American in 2016. Now, what about for our current year? Well, the rate of home prices rises by about 5% yearly, which means the percentage of these homes (in the affordable price range) will further decrease year over year as prices go up (especially in a ...
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How-Can-I-Optimize-My-Finances-To-Save-For-A-House-In-A-Year?

How Can I Optimize My Finances To Save For A House In A Year?

Are you stressed out due to living in a rental house with noisy neighbors or not so decent roommates? Are you fed up of spending most of your hard-earned salary paying rent? Are you maybe wondering how can I optimize my finances to save for a house in a year? Worry no more; as you can save yourself this hassle overall by owning the money to buy a home within a year. Below are simple ...
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How-Can-I-Pay-Off-My-Mortgage-Early?

How Can I Pay Off My Mortgage Early?

Unless you need the mortgage interest deduction  or plan to sell soon, it makes financial sense to pay off your mortgage early. The question many then ask though is, how can I pay off my mortgage early? Even at today’s low interest rates, the interest adds up over the life of a 30-year loan. Everything else being equal, owning a home is a good way to grow your money, but the amount of interest paid ...
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How-Can-I-Sell-My-Home-Faster?

How Can I Sell My Home Faster?

Is it like pulling off a miracle when you sell your house within a month? Now, while not all real estate markets in the United States of America have fully recovered from the effects of the Great Recession, Charleston, SC is an area that appreciates perpetually. You may love your home as of right now, but a time may come when you’ll want to sell it and move on accordingly. Don’t allow yourself to learn ...
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What Should I Ask My Listing Agent During Our First Meeting?

What Should I Ask My Listing Agent During Our First Meeting?

Selling a house is quite a hectic process nowadays. With the entry of so many real estate agents, it has become important to often ensure that you clarify all the important information before engaging in any commitments. The reason for this is that you need to be sure that you are giving the right person the responsibility of selling your house. Thus, getting the right listing agent is one of the most significant steps towards ...
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What-Are-The-Top-Home-Improvements-To-Increase-The-Value-Of-My-Home?

What Are The Top Home Improvements To Increase The Value Of My Home?

Many seek to improve the investment on their house and might be looking for ways to increase it's overall value for a future time when they decide to sell. Improving your Charleston, SC house is truly all about choices and options. What it will really come down to is how much are you willing to spend on the renovations, and personal preferences. This could leave you with a number of questions including, what are the top ...
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What Do People Forget To Consider When Buying A New Home?

What Do People Forget To Consider When Buying A New Home?

Have you possibly been you considering buying a new home recently? While the process of getting the right match for your lifestyle can be challenging, there are numerous important factors to consider when looking for a new home. Now, when deciding on where to live some may prioritize proximity to nightlife or coffee shops or possibly grocery stores. Another buyer could be heavily focused solely on the neighborhood and their neighbors around them. Others may consider ...
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New listing in Ansonborough Downtown

New listing in Ansonborough Downtown

Great New listing in Downtown Charleston. Walk to Fig for dinner in two minutes! $1,595,000 4 Maiden Lane Charleston, SC 29401  3 BD | 2.5 BA | 2,920 SF Click for Details     ...
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How-Do-You-Make-An-Offer-On-A-House?

How Do You Make An Offer On A House?

Looking for that perfect new home can send you through many directions and through lots of doors. When you finally walk into a house that feels right and you can imagine yourself legitimately living there, it's time to get down to business. That business would be making an offer and starting the process of making the house your home. If you’re interested in how to make an offer on a house, here are a few items ...
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Why are so few homes for sale?

Why are so few homes for sale?

Why Are So Few Homes for Sale?There is no doubt that the largest challenge in today's housing market is a lack of housing inventory for sale. This challenge has been defined as an "overwhelming lack of supply," and even a "straight up inventory crisis." ...
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What-Are-The-Top-Reasons-My-Home-Isn't-Selling?

What Are The Top Reasons My Home Isn’t Selling?

Numerous hurdles may occur when you decide to sell your home,  including a very possible delay in actually getting your home sold. When the time starts to fly by a little too much, you can get a bit stressed when considering the amount of time and money that you have invested in improving your house over the years. Worst-case scenario, the home may be possibly incurring you additional mortgage payments every month until it is ...
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What Are All The Tax Deductions Available For Homeowners?

What Are All The Tax Deductions Available For Homeowners?

In the United States, a majority of state and local governments charge real estate taxes. This can be described as an annual charge by a taxing authority, as a percentage of the value of your real estate property. The tax is deducted by the established taxing authority, based on the estimated property value. Your home will provide you with several tax benefits all through it’s cycle; from the time you buy it, to when you ...
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How-To-Sell-A-Home-While-Living-With-Children

How To Sell A Home While Living With Children?

Selling your home is not always as easy as 1,2,3. Even in a market like Charleston, it can still take time. It’s a process that can take a great deal of work for those seeking to sell. Before you can begin looking for prospective buyers, you have to make the house 'showable' and ‘presentable.’ I know that you’re probably already thinking that this means your home has to be uncluttered, clean, and looking it's very ...
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How-Much-Have-Homes-Appreciated-In-Charleston-Since-2008?

How Much Have Homes In Charleston Appreciated Since 2008?

How Much Have Homes In Charleston Appreciated Since 2008? When considering buying or selling in a real estate market, everyone is always concerned about a possible bubble and the corresponding consequences due to the housing crash of 2008. Many looking at the Charleston area may then be curious about how much have homes in Charleston appreciated since 2008? As with other metropolitan areas around the US ever since 2008, greater Charleston has at times experienced a ...
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Why-Do-Families-Love-Charleston

Why Do Families Love Charleston?

Charleston, established in 1670, routinely receives accolades as the world’s best and friendliest city. It’s a city that’s diverse, has an outstanding school system and plenty to do for families of all ages. Whether you come for a visit or live here,  you'll quickly to learn about why do families love Charleston. In this area you’ll find free and low-cost activities, indoors and out, that will appeal to every member of your family's sense of fun, ...
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What-Kind-Of-Education-Can-I-Expect-For-My-Children-In-Charleston?

What Kind Of Education Can I Expect For My Children In Charleston?

Charleston, South Carolina is one of the fastest growing cities in the country with a  population growth of 96,650 residents in the year 2000, to an estimated 134,385 residents in 2016. Many come to Charleston to visit and end up falling in love with the city, making plans to move. Now, an important aspect of any city for a parent considering relocation is what type of education can I expect for my children? Here is ...
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What-Are-The-Top-Events-In-Charleston-Throughout-The-Year?

What Are The Top Events In Charleston Throughout The Year?

The city of Charleston, South Carolina has been voted as the best city in the United States and one of the best in the world by many publications throughout the years. This comes as no surprise to the people who live here or have had the opportunity to visit, but still some may be wondering what are the top events in Charleston throughout the year? Between the city’s history, great weather, colorful architecture, cobblestone streets, ...
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Who-Are-The-Top-Employers-Of-Charleston

Who Are The Top Employers Of Charleston?

The business community of South Carolina is one of the best places to work in the United States with it’s boisterous abundance of multinational companies, and governmental institutions. This is without mentioning it’s diversified investments in the aerospace, defense, and technology industries. The city of Charleston is one of the places that benefit greatly from this thriving business environment. Therefore, in recent times, the city has experienced an influx of quite a few job seekers ...
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What-Do-I-Need-To-Prepare-In-Order-To-Buy-A-Home

What Do I Need To Prepare In Order To Buy A Home?

Buying a home is a major investment a lot of people will make at some point their life. For this reason, it is a good idea to prepare for the process adequately. Before you even begin looking at houses to buy, there are a few things you should put in order. One of the first questions you may be asking yourself, is what do I need to prepare in order to buy a home? In ...
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What-Are-The-Biggest-Mistakes-And-Misconceptions-Of-Buying-A-Home?

What are the biggest mistakes and misconceptions of buying a home?

Buying a home is probably the most expensive and complicated purchase you’ll ever make. While beginning this process and initially considering buying a home, one of the top questions you may be looking into is what are the biggest mistakes and misconception to be aware of when buying a home? From your initial decision to enter the market to the time after closing, it’s possible to make choices  along the way that you might regret ...
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How-Should-I-Convert-An-Assessment-To-Home-Value?

How Should I Convert An Assessment To Home Value?

An assessment represents a certain percentage of the real estate market value of a home, and will be dependent on the county and the town of the corresponding property. Dealing with taxes, let alone trying to understand everything concerning real estate can be difficult and could leave you wondering how to convert an assessment to home value. The assessment percentage can range from 1-100 percent of the value. In Charleston, SC, for instance, fair market value ...
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Advantages-Of-Charleston-Real-Estate-Market

What Are The Advantages Of The Charleston Real Estate Market?

Charleston, SC is an area that has seen rapid growth over the last several years. Whether moving or just visiting, you could be wondering what are the advantages of the Charleston real estate market over other areas? With a population of roughly 96,000 residents in 2000, Charleston has grown to an estimated 132,609 by 2015. It's current growth rate is three times higher than the national average. Many people are relocating to Charleston for several ...
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What Are The Top Reasons To Sell A House in 2017?

What Are The Top Reasons To Sell A House in 2017?

What Are The Top Reasons To Sell A House in 2017? In 2016, home sellers were in an encouraging market, where sales were up by 3.3 percent, higher than 2015. The National Association of Realtors predicts better growth in 2017, and this may just be one of only a few of the top reasons to sell a house in 2017 in Charleston, SC. The forecasted growth in home sales in 2017 is 2 percent, with the median ...
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DoYouReallyNeedToUseARealEstateAgentWhenBuyingAHome?

Do You Really Need To Use A Real Estate Agent When Buying A Home?

Do You Really Need To Use A Real Estate Agent When Buying A Home? The increasing prominence of the Internet in our daily lives has absolutely changed everything over the last decade and further. From how we hail our taxis, rent out rooms, to how we connect with people socially; there is no doubt the internet has affected how people buy and sell their homes too. Many third party  real estate services have recently started ...
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What Are The Disadvantages of Putting Less Than Twenty Percent Down When Buying A Home?

What Are The Disadvantages of Putting Less Than Twenty Percent Down When Buying A Home?

For many home buyers, one of the biggest hurdles and objections in the process of buying a home is saving up for a down payment. In today’s markets, home values are high, so trying to save up for the traditional 20-percent down payment may seem like an endless task. Just as you think you’re getting close, home values increase again and you’re left chasing after an unattainable goal. Some buyers get around this dilemma by ...
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What-Does-A-Real-Estate-Investor-Need-To-Decide-When-Investing-In-A-Property

What Does A Real Estate Investor Need To Decide When Investing In A Property?

What Does A Real Estate Investor Need To Decide When Investing In A Property? In 2016, the city of Charleston, South Carolina, was ranked as the fifth best place for real estate investment in the U.S by HomeVestors and the Local Market Monitor. This ranking was based on the employment growth rate of different cities across the nation. Although it mainly concerns rental properties, it is one of many clear indications of the importance of ...
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Dream Home Checklist

Dream Home Checklist

Define Your Dream Home Write in your preferences and rate them: 3 = Vital, 2 = Very Important, 1 = Neutral, 0 = Not important LOCATION PREFERENCES RATE Neighborhood     School district     Near public transportation     Near airport     Near expressway     Near shopping     Great views     TYPE     Single-family / condo / townhome     Minimum / maximum property age     Willingness to ...
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Just Listed in Ansonborough Historic Charleston

Just Listed in Ansonborough Historic Charleston

Park and walk to all the best of living in Downtown Charleston’s Historic Ansonborough neighborhood. Beautifully renovated and expertly maintained Charleston Single style home with kitchen house incorporated to create a fabulous space. The first floor has a Formal Living Room, Formal Dining Room, Gourmet Eat-In Kitchen, Family Room, Office Space, Laundry and Full Bath. Second floor has 3 Bedrooms, Drawing Room and 2 Full Baths.  Call Justin to schedule a showing at: 843.224.4422 View Full ...
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WhenIsTheRightTimeToBuyAHouse?

When Is The Right Time To Buy A House?

When is the right time to buy a house? Buying a house is often a matter of timing. Your local residential housing market responds to several factors both local and national. When you’re looking for a home you may be  wondering if the time is right, and often asking when is the right time to buy a house? Aside from personal factors such as having a down payment and overall financial health, you also have ...
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How Can I Ready My Finances To Buy A Home in 2018?

How Can I Ready My Finances To Buy A Home in 2018?

2018 is the year you could easily own a new home in Charleston, SC. Whether you are a local who simply wants to buy real estate property or you're possibly relocating to South Carolina for a new job opportunity, there has never been a greater time to move to a city as lovely as Charleston. It also does not matter whether you are buying a retirement home, or possibly just another house. This is because Congress ...
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WhenIsTheBestTimeToSellMyHouse

When Is The Best Time To Sell My House?

When Is The Best Time To Sell My House? A lot of myths surround the idea of when is the best time to sell your house. There honestly is no specific answer when one is  pondering when is the best time to sell my house. A number of factors have to be put under consideration in order to make a right decision. Each neighborhood and every home is different. It is best to take your time ...
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What to Look for When Buying an Investment Property in Charleston, SC

What to Look for When Buying an Investment Property in Charleston, SC

The Charleston, South Carolina area has seen notable population growth in recent years as people relocate from around the state and the country. If you are looking to relocate or simply buy an investment property, the greater Charleston area offers several advantages as population growth drives development, business, and improves overall market value for properties. However, no matter what your reasons, careful research has to be done before buying a property. Here are eight factors ...
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How Much Should I Sell My Home For_

How Much Should I Sell My Home For?

When selling your home, choosing the right price point is one of the most important decisions you will make. Your asking price determines your profit or loss, and how fast your home sells. Deciding what price point to start with can be confusing. These tips will help you figure out how to get the maximum price for your real estate offering. Get an Appraisal Contact a local real estate appraisal service. The appraiser will visit ...
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JT - Mortgage prices

What Is The Relationship Between Mortgage Rates And Housing Prices?

What is the relationship between mortgage rates and housing prices? The housing market fluctuates constantly. When buying or selling residential property, a good understanding of how mortgage rates affect housing prices can vastly alter your decisions. Having a realtor that understands this relationship can be the difference between a better and more gainful realty experience (that keeps money in your pocket), or a more painful, stressed and frantic approach that costs you money. How are ...
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JT - Sell or Buy 1st

Should I Sell My House First, Or Buy a New Home First?

 Should I sell my house first or buy a new home first?  There is a lot of paperwork and certain technicalities that come with selling or buying a property, and they should never be overlooked because they can consume a lot of time. It’s advisable to have the right realtor that knows the many advantages and disadvantages of both options, before choosing  the right way forward. Consulting with a professional real estate agent will help ...
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Justin Thomas (2)

What are the Common Home Selling Mistakes to Avoid?

What are the Common Home Selling Mistakes to Avoid? Selling or buying a home in South Carolina’s second largest city Charleston, situated along the low country coast of South Carolina, is a great investment. In fact, housing in most of the largest metros across the country has been rising year-over-year. Homeowners have adopted a trend of maximizing equity whenever their houses hit the real estate markets. Here are some of the most avoidable seller or ...
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Harleston Village

Harleston Village, Charleston SC

  From the moss draped oaks lining the College of Charleston campus to the sailboats anchored in the Ashley River, Harleston Village is a slice of the good life in Charleston, South Carolina. Spanning from Calhoun Street down to Broad Street, Harleston Village occupies half of the peninsula that defines the historic Holy City. History of Harleston Village Named for John Harleston who once owned this land, the area was developed starting in 1770. The ...
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How Much Should I Sell My Home For_

How Much Should I Sell My Home For?

When selling your home, choosing the right price point is one of the most important decisions you will make. Your asking price not only determines your profit or loss, but also how fast your home sells. Having the right realtor that knows what to emphasize and where you can get the most bang for your buck may be the difference between money in your pocket and money left on the table at signing.   Nonetheless, ...
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AtHomewithDiveristy

Justin Thomas Achieves At Home with Diversity® certification

NEWS RELEASE Justin M Thomas Achieves CERTIFICATION in NATIONAL Real Estate Network Charleston, SC February 8, 2017- Justin M Thomas of Carriage Properties, LLC has been awarded the At Home with Diversity® certification from the National Association of REALTORS®. Justin joins 25,000 other real estate professionals in North America who have earned the certification after completing an 8 hour course addressing topics of diversity, fair housing and business planning development. The program is designed to ...
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Mary Ellen Front

Great New Listing Downtown In Longborough

Just Listed Downtown in Longborough  Click for Details or Call Justin @ 843.224.4422 ...
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tax estimator

Easily Calculate Property Tax Estimates

You don't have to guess what the taxes will be on your potential new home. Easily estimate your property taxes in Charleston Country here: Property Tax Estimator ...
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banner_battery

Don’t let Congress take away your Home Interest Deductions!

GET THE FACTS ON HOME OWNERSHIP Don’t let Congress take away your Home Interest Deductions! Right now, there is a discussion going on in Congress that could have a huge impact on your home and your wallet. How? Congress is considering eliminating income tax deductions for our homes. If some lawmakers in Congress have it their way, we could see big changes not only to federal income tax deductions for mortgage interest and property taxes, but ...
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Great Multi-Unit Investment Opportunity on Rutledge Ave

Great Multi-Unit Investment Opportunity on Rutledge Ave

Great Multi-Unit Investment Opportunity on Rutledge Ave 112 Rutledge Avenue is a four unit condominium building with upside potential. All units are individually metered. Regime in place but currently inactive. The building comes with 10 off street parking spaces. The total square footage shown in the regime documents is 6,074 SF. The same owner owns all four units and is offering the entire building for sale.   The TMS numbers include 457-03-02- lots 120, 162, ...
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SOLD - 24 State Street - Historic Charleston - French Quarter Neighborhood

SOLD – 24 State Street – Historic Charleston – French Quarter Neighborhood

The Johnson-Poinsett building, CA 1841, is labeled as Post-Revolutionary-Notable in “This is Charleston Architectural Survey”. For the past 30 years, this building served as the gallery and residence of esteemed artist Nina Liu.  If walls could talk...this premises has had many lives.  Different types of stores, shops, residences and even as a bordello.  During a 1980s renovation, original plaster reveled phone numbers of some of Charleston finest entertainers during the war.  ...
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south_broad

Historic Charleston Homes For Sale

Renowned for its world-famous historic district, Charleston is often referred to as the “Holy City.” Aptly named for its plethora of church steeples, which fill the city’s skyline, both residents and visitors alike find themselves drawn to the southern charm and historic elegance found here. Offering a wealth of opportunity for exquisite real estate, it is here you will find a wide range of property types with historic Charleston homes for sale found primarily within the downtown ...
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78

Homes For Sale in Historic Charleston

Housing options among historic Charleston homes for sale are also diverse. With some homes dating back to the 1700’s, many historic properties have been remodeled or restored throughout the years. Additionally, there are many new developments, which contain condominiums and lofts reminiscent of the architectural styling found throughout the city.  As a member of Historic Charleston and the Preservation Society, I have a great love for the architecture and history found within the Charleston Peninsula.  ...
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Justin_Carriage Properties (6 of 8)

Charleston Gay Friendly REALTOR

Purchasing a home can often times be overwhelming and frustrating, especially if you are relocating to the area or are unfamiliar with the intricacies of each neighborhood and community.  As a leading Charleston gay friendly Realtor®, I, Justin Thomas, take great pride in representing you and your best interests throughout the home buying process. With so many details to attend to, deadlines to meet and contracts to read and sign, working with a local REALTOR ...
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Downtown Charleston, SC homes for sale

Downtown Charleston, SC homes for sale

  Antebellum houses, historic churches, cobblestone streets and wrought iron gates await you when you choose to purchase Downtown Charleston, SC homes for sale.  Located just minutes from the intracoastal waterway, the surrounding beaches and exceptional recreational areas including some of the finest golf courses in the country, Charleston is the perfect location for those who enjoy a blend of historic elegance and exceptional cultural diversity.  As a local Charleston Gay Realtor® who has specialized ...
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bike_ride_2

Charleston, SC Historic Homes For Sale

Whether you are considering historic homes for sale in Charleston, SC as your primary residence or second home, you are sure to find something to fit all your needs.  In addition to the many single-family homes for sale in the area, there are also a variety of historic properties, which have been developed into condominiums and lofts, blending modern luxuries with historic elegance. Many buyers who are searching for a second-home prefer the low-to-no maintenance ...
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restaurant_scene

Downtown Charleston, SC Homes For Sale

Whether you are just getting acquainted with our beautiful community or are already familiar and are looking to explore the possibilities open to you among Downtown Charleston, SC homes for sale and the surrounding areas, you’ve come to the right place! Offering a diverse array of neighborhoods and communities to choose from, Charleston has a wealth of real estate options for potential buyers of all types. From the bedroom communities of James Island and Mt ...
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kiawah_island

Gay Friendly REALTOR in Charleston

When searching for any Realtor®, you should feel comfortable discussing your family, interests and expectations. As an openly gay real estate professional and Charleston resident, I take great pride in helping the members of my community with the purchase and sale of their homes. In addition to being a Charleston gay friendly Realtor®, I am one of the area’s top producing agents, have impeccable follow-up and am attentive to the wants and needs of my ...
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crbj-banner

Charleston Market finishes 2014 strong

Charleston Market finishes 2014 strong Charleston Market finishes 2014 strong Home sales volume in the Lowcountry was up 9% in 2014 from the previous year, and the median price of homes in the area grew by nearly 5% in the same time period, according to data (.pdf) released Wednesday by the Charleston Trident Association of Realtors. The number of homes for sale, however, was 12% lower in 2014 than in 2013, the association said. Matt ...
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Anson57md2

Just Listed historic home for sale in Ansonborough Downtown Charleston SC

Just Listed historic home for sale in Ansonborough Downtown Charleston SC 57 Anson Street Downtown Charleston SC Click to view video of property ...
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innerfoto

Historic Charleston Homes For Sale

Renowned for its world-famous historic district, Charleston is often referred to as the “Holy City.” Aptly named for its plethora of church steeples, which litter the city’s skyline, both residents and visitors alike find themselves drawn to the southern charm and historic elegance found here. Offering a wealth of opportunity for exquisite real estate, it is here you will find a wide range of property types with historic Charleston homes for sale found primarily within ...
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johns_island

Homes For Sale in Mt. Pleasant, SC

Named by Money Magazine as one of the Top 100 Best Places to Live in the U.S. in 2006, both residents and visitors alike praise Mt. Pleasant for blend of southern charm with modern convenience. Homes for sale in Mt. Pleasant, SC are typically found within the $400,000 range while, depending on size, location and age, certain homes can fetch multi-million dollar price tags. With a constantly growing population approaching 60,000 residents, Mt. Pleasant continues ...
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55

Homes For Sale in Historic Charleston

Housing options among historic Charleston homes for sale are also diverse. With some homes dating back to the 1700’s, many historic properties have been remodeled or restored throughout the years. Additionally, there are many new developments, which contain condominiums and lofts reminiscent of the architectural styling found throughout the city.  As a member of Historic Charleston and the Preservation Society, I have a great love for the architecture and history found within the Charleston Peninsula.  ...
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l5ea90b44-m0xd-w640_h480_q80

Hot Properties – 30 Vendue Range

Hot Properties 30 Vendue Range Bryan Perrucci of Southeastern Management Group and Vic Brandt of Julian V. Brandt Inc. represented the buyer, Gardenia Investments LLC, in the purchase of a 3,734-square-foot building at 30 Vendue Range in Charleston from Newton Holdings LLC for $1.275 million. Justin Thomas of Carriage Properties represented the seller ...
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Gay REALTOR in Charleston

Gay REALTOR in Charleston

Are you looking for a Charleston gay REALTOR? You’ve come to the right place. Whether you are considering buying, selling or investing, as a Charleston gay friendly Realtor ® and openly gay real estate professional and area resident, I make it my priority to understand your wants, needs and expectations and work tirelessly to ensure they are not only met but exceeded.  Purchasing a home is one of the biggest investments of your life; please ...
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charleston

Homes For Sale in Mt. Pleasant, SC

Located just across the famous Cooper River Bridge from historic Charleston, Mt. Pleasant is renowned for being an exquisite family-friendly neighborhood with exceptional convenience to all the local area’s main attractions. Homes for sale in Mt. Pleasant, SC are just minutes away from miles of pristine beaches, world-class golf courses, schools and hospitals, fantastic shopping and of course, historic downtown Charleston. Popular among families and professionals, Mt. Pleasant real estate consists of single-family homes, condominiums ...
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55

Homes For Sale in Downtown Charleston, SC

  Imagine owning a little piece of Charleston, South Carolina history - filled with the charm of the south and stunning architecture ranging from the Georgian-style to the styles of the pre-Revolutionary War period. All this and more can be yours when you choose to purchase any of the homes for sale in downtown Charleston, SC.  Famous for its many gardens and the stunning beauty found when the azaleas, crape myrtles and camellias are in ...
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isle_palms

Downtown Charleston Homes For Sale

As a local Charleston gay Realtor® who specializes in the purchase and sale of the unique historic properties found among homes for sale in downtown Charleston, SC, I have the expertise to assist you in comparing the attributes of these exquisite neighborhoods, architectural styles and of course, the available properties.  From renovated Victorian properties within downtown Charleston, to the luxurious beachfront estates of the Isle of Palms, Sullivan's Island ,  Seabrook Island, Kiawah Island and ...
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ioin_in_mount

Mt. Pleasant, SC Homes For Sale

Mt. Pleasant, SC Homes For Sale Named by Money Magazine as one of the Top 100 Best Places to Live in the U.S. in 2006, both residents and visitors alike praise Mt. Pleasant for blend of southern charm with modern convenience. Homes for sale in Mt. Pleasant, SC are typically found within the $400,000 range while, depending on size, location and age, certain homes can fetch multi-million dollar price tags. With a constantly growing population ...
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