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Cathy Chapman's Blog

By Cathy Chapman | Broker in 20878

    Posted Under: Quality of Life in White Plains, Home Buying in White Plains, Investment Properties in White Plains  |  July 2, 2014 1:38 PM  |  59 views  |  No comments
    $7,500 TOWARD YOUR DOWN PAYMENT AND $15K IN CLOSING HELP! HUGE SAVINGS IN WHITE PLAINS, MD FOR A BRAND NEW TOWN HOME FOR UNDER $300k! I can guarantee you these HUGE SAVINGS! Get into your dream home with almost no money out of pocket! We also have a credit program to assist with credit clean up!

    IN WHITE PLAINS, BRAND NEW 3 Bedroom Townhouse with over 2200 Square Feet with a GARAGE, GRANITE, HARDWOOD, STAINLESS STEEL APPLIANCES, GREAT SCHOOL DISTRICT, POOL, CLUB HOUSE, WALKING TRAILS - all for under $300,000! THE BIG QUESTION: CAN YOU BE READY TO MOVE BY AUGUST? IF SO, CALL ME AT 301-514-6839! Cathy Chapman, New Home Specialist and Broker - Signature Home Sales.

    With over 30 years of Sales Expertise & Negotiations, I am well-poised to serve as your greatest asset! MORE AMAZING SAVINGS IN OTHER MARYLAND AREAS! CALL ME TO LEARN ABOUT WHAT IS AVAILABLE IN YOUR DESIRED AREA.

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in Maryland, Home Buying in Maryland, Home Ownership in Maryland  |  July 1, 2014 5:25 AM  |  71 views  |  No comments
    One of the biggest questions a buyer has is, "How negotiable is the builder on price?"  The answer to this question is - it depends.  It depends on market conditions, the base price of the home, the square footage of the home, options you include in your purchase and a host of other factors.  

    The next biggest question is, "Do you know enough to make sure you are getting the best deal and not leaving money on the table?  Are you comfortable you know how to negotiate based on all the factors involved in a New Home purchase in 2014"  The answer to that question is, "It depends."  It depends on how much experience you have purchasing new homes and going through the process with builders.  What do you know about construction, details of a home, what brings the best value in a resale situation?  

    Essentially, you may not be aware of all the things you don't know to get the best deal.  Just as a real estate professional may know something about your job and industry, they recognize that they most likely don't know enough to do your job at peak performance just as you don't possess the level of competence an agent with 30 years in the business has.

    The value and benefits of expertise offered to you AT NO COST in a purchase is a no brainer. You either want this level of expertise on your side of the table or you are willing to take a chance and risk leaving money on the table and incurring all the stress that comes along with going blindly down this road. Considering that Buyer Agent expertise is free, are you wise enough to secure an agent with nearly 30 years of Sales Expertise and Negotiating power?  

    Call me, let's chat.  If you want expertise with builders, don't go into builder's models without me escorting you on your first visit or they will not honor me as your agent. They want you to be on your own so they have maintain control.  Remember, the Sales Agent represents the builder and their objective is to get you to purchase the most options at the highest possible price.  Don't fall for it.  Get help and expertise to guide you through the process, make it educational and enjoyable and leave the stressful part of the deal for me to handle for you!  It's as simple as a phone call asking for me to serve as your New Home Buyer Agent.  Wise people secure wise counsel in everything they do.

    Cathy Chapman, Broker
    Signature Home Sales
    301-514-6839 Cell

  • Why people are moving to Frederick County. A feature video from the Economic Development Committee.

    Posted Under: General Area in Frederick County, Quality of Life in Frederick County, Home Buying in Frederick County  |  March 26, 2014 9:59 AM  |  403 views  |  No comments
    This a fabulous video of Frederick County Maryland where I have lived since 1998.  Much of my expertise lies here as well as Gaithersburg where I lived for 11 years.

    This is a remarkable video and very educational. I learned a lot I didn't know about Frederick when I saw it for the first time.  And I had lived here for probably 5 years already.  I can watch this over and over again since it is so well put together and has such fabulous content!  
    I would venture to say that a majority of people who live here are not even aware of everything you are about to learn about Frederick County/City in this video.

    This movie is a few years old but it's a FABULOUS education!

    Unfortunately, in 2012, BP Solar closed down its plant and moved their HQ to Houston, Texas and operations to other countries, including China.

    Let me know if you'd like to explore living in Frederick County.


    Posted Under: Quality of Life in Montgomery County, Home Buying in Montgomery County, Investment Properties in Montgomery County  |  March 26, 2014 8:38 AM  |  404 views  |  No comments

    Certified New Home Specialist
    When a New Home Buyer starts digging into the Internet to get educated about their options, it never occurs to them that they lack knowledge about the process. Buyers frequently think that they'll get a better price without an agent. However, builder's do NOT discount a home if the buyer comes without an agent. This would be discimination for those buyers who choose to come WITH an agent to serve their side of the table. So, saving money on price is a fallacy.

    A  New Home Specialist will serve as your greatest asset. Their knowledge about how the process works, how builders make their greatest profits, the best options to maximize the return on your investment in a resale situation, their negotiating skills, mediating issues that arise and believe me, there are always issues that arise in a build process. you get the picture. Without an agent by your side, the Builder's agent has more control and all the knowledge about how things work in a new home sale. Unless you have bought a new home before, you are powerless in their eyes. Remember, I used to sell for the builders so I have been on that side of the table too!

    I sold for a builder in King Farm and after a year stepped onto the buyers side so I could guide my clients to ALL of their options from a standpoint of objectivity and knowledge of all of them. I negotiate and protect the buyer side of the deal.  A builders sales agent will treat you great whether you have an agent or not, but the important thing to know is that the sales agent represents the builder so it is their job to get the highest possible price. And their sales quotas also affects their bonuses. So the builders agent will guide and educate you from their builders bottom line position and hope they can convince you that you are making great decisions along the way. They cannot do anything that your Buyer Agent would do to make sure you consider all your options to get you to the best price for your home because that would be a breach in their fiduciary duty to their client, the builder.

    As your Buyer Agent and being a Certified New Home Specialist, I will educate you about ALL builders and what each of them offers that is unique from the others, which builders are difficult to work with, those whose poor operations will cause you extreme levels of stress, which builders go above and beyond the call of duty for the new home buyer and much more. I will negotiate on your behalf, taking that stress off your shoulders and fight to get what you want, keeping the purchase rational rather than emotional. I will protect your best financial interests every step of the way - making sure you are getting the best loan product, scrutinize the construction of your new home, share my expertise with design ideas that most new home buyers would never think about and guide you through the multitude of choices when building a new home. This expertise also serves clients who are also looking at the resale market which helps them to keep things in the proper perspective with regard to value vs. price.

    In short, a New Home Specialist will serve as your greatest asset in your New Home purchase.  If you are looking for an agent to guide you from day one, please give me a call and you receive the highest level of education about all of your new home options.  This will position you to make the best choice and get the best price and conditions on what is most likely the greatest single investment of your lifetime!

    Cathy Chapman, Broker Signature Home Sales

  • What do you love about your home?

    Posted Under: Quality of Life in Frederick, Market Conditions in Frederick, Home Selling in Frederick  |  August 2, 2013 11:57 AM  |  569 views  |  No comments
    Have you put together a list of what you LOVE about your home?  

    If you are considering the sale of a property, make sure you make a list of everything you love about the property as well as those things you upgraded while owning the home.

    Others who are looking for property appreciate the care of an owner and the creativity they put into the improvement or enhancements.  Start with curb appeal... make a note of the landscaping you have done and the trees, flowers and shrubs you have added, especially if there is a lot of color to be seen over many months.  Add in the hardscapes you have added... patio, deck, grill pit, custom light fixtures, etc.  Does your home feature architectural shingles which give a beautiful dimension to the aesthetics of your home and roof?  Do a walk-around your home on the outside and then start your inside walk, starting at the front door.  What do you want to bring to the attention of a prospective buyer that they may not notice?  Make notes.  Attend to the details of cleaniness along with the details of your wall colors, draperies, and so forth.  No one wants to see a home that is not spotless!

    These are the details that the Signature Home Sales Team make sure we pay close attention to when assisting our clients with their homes for sale.  The difference is in staging the details that are most important to a buyer who may not notice without this added attention.  Then we take the highest quality photos and from the absolute best angles.  There is skill in great photography that brings people into our listings.

    The Signature Home Sales Team has been in Frederick now since 1998 and was formerly in Montgomery County from 1986 - 1998.  With a strong market knowledge in both counties, we can share the advantages of each location to potential buyers, depending on which location they are perusing.

    Let us show you how much value we can bring to your sale!  Give us a call and we'll come visit you, introduce our company to you, do a walk-through of your home and if necessary, have your home professionally staged for a sale at no cost to you!

    Have a wonderful rest of your summer and we look forward to your call!

    Cathy Chapman, Owner Broker
    Signature Home Sales
    301-514-6839 Cell
    301-620-9880 Office

  • The Manor at Holly Hills - Frederick MD - Luxury lifestyle at its' finest!

    Posted Under: Quality of Life in Frederick, Property Q&A in Frederick, Home Ownership in Frederick  |  June 6, 2013 8:22 AM  |  661 views  |  1 comment

    Learn about Frederick County and why it's the place to live.

    The Manor at Holly Hills is an exclusive community of million dollar homes on lots ranging from 1.2 acres up to 26 acres with the Home Place on the market for $1,550,000.  11 of the 20 homesites are already sold and a few of the purchasers slated to break ground in the fall of 2013.

    This is not my listing so I can serve as your New Home Specialist and Exclusive Buyer Agent.  I have specialized in New Homes for over 13 years and grew up in the building business so can share valuable expertise throughout the process of a build project. I can also recommend builders with whom I have had years of experience with. Here is a home a client built that is a Mediterranean style home that is just AMAZING! http://matrix.mris.com/Matrix/Public/PhotoPopup.aspx?L=1&TID=1&key=97350310710&mtid=1&n=30&View=G&i=0

    This client could build you the same home in the Manor at Holly Hills!

    Call me and let's chat about your wants and needs for your next home!

    Cathy Chapman
    301-514-6839 Cell
  • Home Values Expected to Jump 5.4 Percent Annually

    Posted Under: Quality of Life in Gaithersburg, Home Buying in Gaithersburg, Home Selling in Gaithersburg  |  May 10, 2013 4:15 AM  |  627 views  |  No comments

    Thu, 2013-05-09 16:43 — NationalMortgag...
    For Sale/Credit: StockbyteMore than 100 forecasters said they expect the Zillow Home Value Index to end 2013 up an average of 5.4 percent year-over-year, and most expressed some fears the Federal Reserve could be inflating a new housing bubble, according to the latest Zillow Home Price Expectations Survey. The survey of 105 economists, real estate experts and investment and market strategists was sponsored by leading real estate information marketplace Zillow, Inc. and is conducted quarterly by Pulsenomics LLC. Panelists said they expected median U.S. home values to rise to $165,280, on average, by the end of 2013. At the end of 2012, the U.S. Zillow Home Value Index stood at $156,800.

    In the last survey, conducted in late February and early March, respondents said they expected average home value growth of just 4.6 percent in 2013. Looking forward, respondents predicted average home value appreciation of 4.4 percent in 2014, up from prior expectations of 4.2 percent.

    But while panelists were more bullish on near-term home value appreciation this year and into 2014, their expectations for nationwide home value growth in 2015, 2016 and 2017 were slightly more pessimistic than in prior surveys. On average, panelists said they expect annual home value growth between 3.5 percent and 3.7 percent from 2015 through 2017, down modestly from previously expressed expectations in the 3.6 percent to 3.8 percent range. Cumulatively, survey respondents predicted home values to rise 22.3 percent, on average, through 2017.

    "The panel's expectations of near-term home value appreciation remaining above historic norms are consistent with a market struggling to satisfy strong demand from buyers attracted by rock-bottom interest rates and improving economic conditions," said Zillow Chief Economist Dr. Stan Humphries. "But looking further out, that appreciation will have to moderate as interest rates rise, or else homes that seem affordable today – despite rapidly rising values – are going to look very expensive relative to people's incomes as it gets more costly to finance a home. How the Federal Reserve handles the eventual winding down of its policy of quantitative easing will be critical in determining if the current period of rapid appreciation is a benign bounce off the bottom, or a more dangerous bubble being re-inflated."

    The most optimistic quartile of panelists predicted a 6.6 percent annual increase in home values in 2013, on average, while the most pessimistic quartile[iii] predicted an average increase of 4.2 percent. Expectations among both the optimists and pessimists were up from prior predictions of 6.1 percent and 3 percent, respectively. Expectations for cumulative home value changes through 2017 ranged from 32.8 percent, on average, among the most optimistic quartile to 12.3 percent among the most pessimistic.

    The latest Zillow Home Price Expectations Survey asked the panel if the Federal Reserve's current monetary policy aimed at keeping mortgage interest rates near historic lows risked inflating a new housing bubble. Just 4 percent of respondents said they saw no risk of a new bubble; 48 percent said they saw a little risk; and another 48 percent said there was a moderate to high risk of a new housing bubble forming as a result of current policies.

    Under the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation, banking regulators were asked to define a "qualified residential mortgage" (QRM) that would make that loan exempt from certain risk retention rules also adopted under Dodd-Frank. The panel was also asked if this QRM definition should include a minimum down payment. Among the respondents, most said the QRM should include a minimum down payment requirement.

    "Contrary to concerns expressed by certain policymakers, only a small minority of our expert panelists believe that including a minimum down payment requirement in QRM would pose a threat to the housing recovery. The vast majority of respondents – 81 percent – believe that establishing a minimum down payment is a good idea and would ultimately foster a healthier housing market," said Pulsenomics founder, Terry Loebs. "This consensus is consistent with the spirit of the provisional QRM rule drafted by financial regulators, although only about one-third of our panel favors a minimum down payment standard of 20 percent or more."

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