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Online Real Estate Blog

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By Mark Acantilado | Home Owner in USA, Mobile, AL
  • Benefits of Home Ownership: the Best Investment You’ll Ever Had

    Posted Under: Quality of Life, Home Buying, Home Ownership  |  February 10, 2014 7:03 AM  |  821 views  |  No comments
    There’s always been a continuous debate over which is better these days: owning a home or renting. Both home prices and home rents have increased significantly over the past few years, and both has tremendously affected the preferences of the community.

    However, a recent survey had revealed that many people in the United States are now choosing to become homeowners after years of experience being renters. Teaching home buyers and prospects to guide them in home buying, etc., plays an important role in their future preferences just like Texas agents learning how to get a real estate license in Texas.

    Below are some facts that separate and makes home ownership a better option for individuals like you, especially this 2014:

    1.       Most home owners have higher net worth than that of renters. This is because they have more investments on their table than renters who have lesser investments and more liabilities instead.

    2.       These day’s home owners are renters before, and most of them; after becoming home owners – had a positive experience towards home ownership.

    3.       A lot of people, which includes you, will sooner realize that having your own home should have been your best investment earlier in your life.

    4.       More and more people who owns a home in the US saves better than renters. When home prices increase, buyers will only feel the pain in buying once – after that, when they finally own the property, it’s all theirs to keep. However, for renter – the rental price increase, it means an increase in their monthly payments – which becomes a long-term financial pain for them and may even affect their monthly savings.

    5.       There are tax benefits that are associated with home ownership.

    6.       Privacy benefits. Having your own place, your own garage, your own backyard – it feels right to have these all as your own investments – in which you future family could call a home-sweet-home.

    There are actually more into home ownership than renting. Renting, though not totally a bad move, would only be an option if you are slowly saving to buy a home. Remember that home renting should not be considered a long term solution, but should act as a stepping stone towards owning a home.

    Home ownership, on the other hand, does not necessarily mean owning a huge piece of land and building your home, or buying a home on a huge piece of land. People should know how much they can afford, what is enough, and what do they need – not what they want.

    Happy home ownership!

  • Buying and Selling Properties During Christmas Season

    Posted Under: Market Conditions, Home Buying, Home Selling  |  December 3, 2013 2:09 AM  |  935 views  |  No comments
    Happy Holidays!

    Christmas season is here – but most of real estate agents are still piling up on resources and materials to persuade their clients on buying a home, while some are into the same criteria trying to sell their client’s properties and get prospective clients before the Yuletide season starts or end.

    If you are currently selling homes and continuously conducts open house presentations to prospective clients, the Christmas month should be a compelling period for all realtors to decorate houses for sale and improve its impression on clients visiting it. There are so many cool ideas that exist today on how to effectively market houses and sell them even during the holiday season.

    Agents could conduct Christmas parties for their clients or prospects, and act as a marketing event for your company to learn the needs of home buyers, investors, what they are currently looking for, etc. It does not necessarily need to be a marketing-oriented event – it should be an event focused on knowing new people, expanding agents’ connection and getting more prospects and possible leads in the future.

    Christmas Decorations, Resourcing, Marketing

    Open houses could be decorated with Christmas stuffs to entice visitors to the on buying or considering the house on their options. Greeting cards could also be another marketing strategy that agents’ could use in spreading the brand, or their own portfolio or name.

    Adding their contact information in every greeting card would make it look like a business card – but in a thoughtful way. It does serve the purpose of sending greetings to your prospect clients, and also works as your contact information anytime the individual though about buying or selling a home.

    The holidays should not be an obstacle to realtors, thus it should be a season for many out-of-the-box-ideas that they could come up with in effectively marketing their portfolios.

    Have a happy holiday!

    Sources:

    http://www.realestate.com.au/blog/advantages-to-selling-your-home-over-christmas/

    http://www.agentcampus.com/blog/focus-on-the-positive-this-holiday-season/

    http://www.sellmycastle.com.au/articles/is-selling-property-over-christmas-a-good-idea-/145/
  • Buying Without Regret: Homebuying Tips for First Time Homebuyers

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in California City, Home Buying in California City, How To... in California City  |  June 28, 2013 3:31 AM  |  2,406 views  |  2 comments
    You only have one shot at making your first biggest purchase right—your real estate purchase—otherwise, it’s going to burden you until the mortgage has been paid off. For moneyed people, purchasing the wrong property isn’t going to be a problem but not for people without a lot of disposable income. It’s not something that can just be charged to experience. No need to fret though—here are a few hints on how to buy your first property smarter:
    1. Check the listings in your area and see if their prices fit your budget. How? You can do a quick search online on a wide range of real estate authority websites and online yellow pages, even that of the official site of National Association of Realtors, to find affordable listings in your area. Indeed, Google is definitely an easy tool for house hunting online.    
    2. Determine your budget. Don’t listen to mortgage bankers who’d advise you that you can actually spend up to 20 percent of your salary on a mortgage loan. Talk it through with your partner or your personal accountant. They’d probably have better things to tell you. Or, you can turn to Bankrate’s mortgage calculator for assistance.
    3. Determine the monthly expenses. Find out the monthly amortization, plus taxes, plus association dues and insurance. Check out Zillow for property tax information or call your local insurance agent to get a ballpark figure. Generally, just to give you an idea, the yearly insurance premium ranges from a few dollars short of $500 to over $1,000.
    4. Bear in mind that there are also closing costs to pay—fees that involve interests or origination fees, title transfer, taxes, and homeowners fees. Make sure to prepare yourself for these fees as well.
    5. Research about the real estate milieu in your target area. Talk to known real estate agents there and ask their opinion on how the local market is doing.
    6. Last but not the least, think of your long-term goals before buying a new house. Remember that a house is very high-maintenance and is quite costly. The maintenance alone can suck your bank account dry. It’s really important to determine how much you have and are willing to shell out.

    By following these simple tips, you can avoid getting your home foreclosed and keep your bank account healthy. Careful planning can prevent you from making a terrible mistake at your first and probably biggest investment—your home.

  • Home Inspection Guide: What to Expect from a Home Inspection

    Posted Under: Home Buying in Texas City, Home Selling in Texas City, Home Ownership in Texas City  |  June 21, 2013 4:16 AM  |  2,331 views  |  3 comments

    A home inspection is a check on the status of the systems and the overall structural integrity of a house.  Often times, home buyers are the ones who usually order the inspection but home inspections are requested by home sellers before the sale date or receiving an offer. Either way a home inspection allows both seller and buyer to set realistic price expectations or come up with a reasonable offer for the value of the house in question. 

    Choosing a Home Inspector

    The home inspector is tasked to examine the entirety of the house; thus, it helps to find one that is certified to the bone. Make sure to ask the inspector you have in mind if they are a member of the American Society of Home Inspectors or you can ask them of state-specific certifications. In Texas, conducting inspections is learned from enrolling in a real estate license Texas online class, so it’s a given for your inspector to have the corresponding certification for that.

    One thing that will set inspectors apart from others is how often they’re recommended by real estate practitioners. Hire one that is often comes up in the subject of reliable home inspectors. Word of mouth still prevails when it comes to choosing a certified home inspector.

    How Long Does the Inspection Take?

    Inspections usually take two to four hours depending on the scope of the inspection, the size of the house and how quick the inspector works.

    Inspection Checklist

     

    Zillow.com, a real estate watchdog, has listed important things that are noted during an inspection—just to give you an idea of how it’s supposed to go. Inspections vary by type, including a basic home inspection, followed by a termite inspection. Specialized inspection for chemical spillages or biohazards may also be conducted if the seller has disclosed related incidences.

     

    Whatever the case may be, one thing that has to be in a homeowner’s checklist is a Radon inspection. Radon is a radioactive gas that results from the breakdown of uranium in soil and water. Every house has radon occurrence but the question lies in whether the Radon falls within the safety limits established by the Environmental Protection Agency or EPA.

     

    These are the things that a professional home inspector should cover during the inspection:

     

    1. Are there cracks, dents and leaks on/in the foundation?
    2. Does the exterior of the house need a facelift? Does the interior of the house look good, meaning, is everything working just fine? 
    3. How’s the plumbing? Are there present problems with the water pressure? Are there any leaks/pools of water stemming from the pipes and plumbing?
    4. Are the electrical wirings faulty? Are there signs of any electrical code violations?
    5. Are the heating and cooling systems properly maintained and functional?
    6. When did the owner last do roof maintenance or replacement? Are the structures that support the roof still strong? 
    7. What’s the status of the plumbing for the kitchen and baths? Are there leaks? How well were they maintained in the past? Which components need repair and replacement?
    8.     Last but not the least, if attached structures are present, are these structures in good condition? 

     

    Heeding the Inspector’s Advice

     

    The inspector will produce a written report containing his recommendations based on the results of the inspection. It is then your responsibility to ask relevant questions as to whether you should act upon the recommendations as soon as possible as well as the gravity of the damages occurring in your home.

    Fees and other Dues

    Fees either come at a fixed price or at an adjusted one based on the results of the inspection and the size of the house. Another determining factor for the inspection price is if it’s still under construction or has been constructed for a long time.

  • Factors to Consider When Buying a Home: Tips for First-Time Homebuyers

    Posted Under: Market Conditions in Texas City, Home Buying in Texas City, Property Q&A in Texas City  |  June 11, 2013 12:32 AM  |  1,140 views  |  No comments

    As with any firsts, purchasing a home is quite challenging for first-time homebuyers. Often times, most homebuyers give up on their myriad options, settling with the first house that falls within their budget range. To make things easier for first-time homebuyers you, let’s examine the factors that you need to consider before buying a home.

    Understanding Your Needs

    First things first: do you really need a home? Does being a home owner fit your future plans?

    One thing that you have to ask yourself or talk with your partner is the type of property you’d want to buy. Should you go for a home, a condo or townhouse? Make a list of the pros and cons of owning each choice based on your goals.  It also wouldn’t hurt to buy a second-hand property—just know how much maintenance work and money you need to put in before you can move in it. Consider the proximity of the home to workplaces, safety and neighborhood as well.

    Mortgage Talk

    Get an initial assessment on how much loan you can get from a bank or financer before being able to buy a home. Real estate financers are likely to assess your loan worth based on existing debt, monthly income and job stability. Also, be practical—set realistic expectations on your “spending” power.

    Look at how much you’re actually willing to spend, should you be approved for a mortgage. The monthly payments may be affordable, but the interest could be exaggerated. It beats the purpose of buying a home when you’ll have to pay double or triple the house’s total cost and be in debt for years.

    Finally, keep your eyes and ears open too for secure financing options provided by your state. Your state may provide housing grants for first-time homebuyers.

    Real Estate Assistance

    Real estate agents are your friends when it comes to finding the right house and financing option for you. They’ll help you make an offer and process the document requirements needed for the purchase. Most importantly, they can help get you out of a bad deal. Find one who has a current real estate license training and have obtained their certification for online real estate courses from a reputable provider.

    The Art of Making an Offer

    A skilled real estate agent will help you negotiate for a better deal for the house you’re eyeing on. They can help you come up with an advantageous offer and present them to the seller or seller’s representative. A counter-offer may be made by the seller’s agent to you and you can proceed in making another offer until you and the other party have reached an agreement. Make sure that the seller is aware of all your conditions before you agree to anything.

    Hold an Inspection

    Schedule an inspection before closing the deal on your would-be home. Take everything that you’ve been told with a grain of salt—even if it’s stated in the disclosure agreement.   

    Get on with it

    If no problem arises from the inspection, then you can proceed with the purchase. Expect to deal with a lot of paperwork relating to home appraisal, title search and transfer and mortgages. The seller may require you to deposit a downpayment before the house goes into escrow, which is a 30-day period wherein the house will be reserved for you.

    This rough guide serves to aid you in buying your home, whether you have little to no knowledge of how real estate purchasing works. Whatever property you decide on, it will all boil down to whether your purchase meets the needs of yours and your family. After all, home is what you make of it.

  • Real Estate Mobile Marketing: The New Era for Real Estate Marketing

    Posted Under: Home Buying in New York, Home Selling in New York, Tech Tips in New York  |  May 22, 2013 8:56 AM  |  1,174 views  |  No comments

    Just as the housing market starts to recover - with local housing markets pushing its total recovery since the start of 1Q 2013, mobile technology has also taken a step forward in targeting the online and mobile community, especifically for the real estate industry.

    A lot of speculations have been in the community, and that also included the development of mobile apps that would both cater the needs of real estate buyers and sellers.

    To know more about the story, click here - http://www.agentcampus.com/blog/real-estate-goes-mobile-hot-apps-for-buyers-and-sellers/
  • How To Make Use of Facebook For Your Real Estate Marketing

    Posted Under: Home Buying in California, Home Selling in California, How To... in California  |  May 17, 2013 2:23 AM  |  1,169 views  |  No comments
    Networking has always been a buzzword in the world of sales, and it’s no different in the world of real estate selling, where really serious money is up for grabs for the agent who can parlay his (or her) network of contacts into clients. If you’re a real estate agent, networking events are great places to grow your business.  
     

    Now with social media providing new—even, fun—ways of doing the old things, networking has taken on a new dimension. Katie Lance, in her article for next.inman.com, asks: Instead of attending a networking event, why not create one? Why? Because when you attend a networking event the likelihood of you actually interacting face to face with a potential client largely depends on the number of events you attend.

    Read more about this article at: http://www.agentcampus.com/blog/networking-via-a-facebook-event-page/

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