Bringing buyers and sellers together since 1976

Other tips for buying a home

To do this, determine your gross monthly income, include any regular and reoccurring income that you can document. You can also use unearned sources of income such as alimony, income producing assets such as real estate, stocks, etc. Then, calculate your monthly debt load. This includes all monthly debt obligations. Although every lender has a slightly different formula, here is a rough idea of how they look ar your numbers. Typically, your monthly housing expense, including monthly payment for taxes and insurance, should not exceed about 28% of your gross monthly income. If you do not know what your tax and insurance expense will be, you can estimate that about 15% of your payment will go toward that expense. The remainder can be used for principal and interest. Your proposed monthly housing expense and your total monthly debt combined should not exceed 36% of your gross monthly income. If it does, your application for a loan may exceed the lender's underwriting guidelines and the loan may not be approved.

How do I get pre-approved for a home loan?

You don't need to know everything about buying and selling real estate if you hire a real estate professional who does. Why not hire a person with more education and experience than you? They either possess intimate knowledge or they know where to find the industry buzz about your neighborhood. Also, agents will help guide clients to make the right price choices for themselves and also the market conditions to which they are buying/selling in. Real Estate Agents handle the volumes of paperwork for you in order to take an abundance of stress off of the buyer or seller.

Why should I hire a Real Estate Agent?

There is no "best" time to sell, per se. Selling a house depends on supply, demand, and other economic factors. However, the time of year you choose to sell can make a difference both in the amount of time it takes to sell your home and in the ultimate selling price. Most of the time, the real estate markets pick up as early as February, with the strongest selling season usually lasting through May and June.

What is the best time to sell your home?

Doing whatever you can to put your house's best face forward is very important if you want to get close to your asking price or sell as quickly as possible. Here are several idea for making your home show better:

  • Clean debris from yard (mow, prune bushes, sweep sidewalk, etc.)
  • Clean windows and make sure paint is not chipped or flaking
  • Be sure basic appliances, fixtures, and the doorbell works
  • Spruce up all rooms, furnishings, floors, walls, and ceilings
  • Make sure the house smells good

How do you prepare a house to sell?

Price and condition are two very important keys when selling property, even in a down market. Price your home correctly. Use comparative sales information from your agent, or pay a professional appraiser (usually $200-$300), to objectively evaluate your home's worth. Go through the house and repair any obvious cosmetic defects that could deter a buyer. In a down market, you may have to consider lowering your price and/or making a major repair, such as replacing a roof, in order to lure a buyer.

What are the two most important factors when selling a home?

If you want top dollar for your property, you probably need to make all minor repairs and selected major repairs before going on the market. Nearly all purchase contracts include an inspection clause,  buyer contingency that allows a buyer to back out if numerous defects are found or negotiate their repair.

What repairs should the seller make?

Frequent Asked Questions

Frequent Asked Questions

Questions on Buying a Home

It is the process where all of the necessary paperwork needed to complete the transaction is signed. Closing is typically held in an office setting, sometimes with both at the closing; sometimes with each party completing the paperwork separately. Whatever the case, the result is that the title to the property is transferred from seller to buyer. The buyer receives the keys and the seller receives payment for the home. Deeds and loan documents are prepared, signed, and filed. Before closing, buyers have a final opportunity to walk through the property to assure that its condition has not materially changed since the signing of the contract.

Figure the price-point you are comfortable with paying monthly

Write down the features and benefits you want in a home. Consider things such as price, location, size, and amenities (extra garage, pool, fireplace, number of bedrooms, basement, etc.). What feature is most important to you? Consider your needs in several years. Consider resale possibilities. Work with a real estate agent on these things in order to get exactly what you want in a house.

Work with a real estate agent who has experience with the local market.

Questions on Selling Your Home

How much money do I have to save in order to buy a home?



Settlement or Closing

Is the down payment within your means? Does the home need repair, remodeling, upgrading electrical, or new plumbing? Is the home the right size? How old is the Central Air and heat? How old is the roof?

The first thing to understand about buying a house is that you don't have to have all the cash saved up in order to make a purchase. If you have a job and a reasonable credit history, you can apply for a home loan. Home loans typically are offered in amounts of 80%, 90%, and sometimes even 95% of the price you are paying for the home. The remaining amount will come from you. Therefore, you will need, to be safe, 20% of the price of the house you are interested in. You can borrow a home loan for a fixed rate. This means the same rate for a certain term. Home loans are usually for 15 to 30 years. The shorter the term, there is usually a slightly lowered interest rate. There is also ARM financing available, which is an Adjustable Rate Mortgage. Generally, it is a good plan to et pre-approved for a home loan. This will let you know how much house you can afford.