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Dnanaz, Home Buyer in Minneapolis, MN

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Asked by Dnanaz, Minneapolis, MN Thu Dec 10, 2009

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In my opinion, buying for 1-2 years would not be worthwhile. Values are depressed right now and will come back to “normal” at some point, but none of us know for sure if that will be in 2 years or 5+ years. If you told me you were staying for 3+ years I would be a big fan of buying because interest rates are so low, and home prices are at the best we have seen is a long time. Perhaps you could consider an alternate exit strategy when you leave in a few years and turn the property in to a renal home? In that neighborhood you would not have trouble finding tenants and you could hold the property longer and enjoy the inevitable recovery in this real estate market.

As to the question of qualifying, you may be able to get a mortgage. I don’t know how long you were in the UK but if it was more than a couple of years I hope you maintained some credit here in the states. If not you will need to re-establish a credit score here to get financing. We will also need to verify your employment history for the last 2 years from a foreign institution which I have done, but always poses certain challenges.

Peter Boyle 612 701 6816.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 10, 2009
Wecome! You are going to love living here! I live on the West Bank of the U of M, have been selling real estate full time in this area for 28+ years, and have sold many properties to clients just like you; students, U employees, professors, etc. I used to live in a condo building that is a five minute walk to both East and West Bank Campus. This condominium community is a great place to live, full of the most interesting people and currently has condos (studios, 1 and 2 bedrooms) available. There are also single family homes within walking distance, but they tend to be much more expensive. The mighty Mississippi River divides the East and West Bank Campus areas and this may be the best walkable community in Minneapolis.

The proposed Central Corridor LRT line, running through the heart of both the East and West Bank campus areas, is scheduled to be completed in 2014 and that will have a very positive impact on resale and appreciation. Your timing could be perfect.

It would be a good idea for you to look at both options, rental and ownership. In so doing, it will become clear to you what will best fit your needs.

The mortage question is a good one. Used to be that you needed a green card to purchase property in Minneapolis. The mortgage guidelines have recently changed dramatically and I'm not sure what the requirement is now. I think the first thing you need to do is to determine whether you can qualify for a loan. There is no point in thinking ownership if it's not feasible. I have a great loan officer, she's got lots of experience, too. You can fill out an application for her online and she can do the research and tell you whether you can qualify for a loan. Her name is Sarah and she has worked with lots of my clients buying in the U area.

It would be my pleasure to help you find a home here in the heart of the metro. Please contact me if you would like my help. Again, welcome!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 10, 2009
Hi Dnanaz,
I agree, maybe you'd be better off renting while you're here. If you really wanted to buy something, maybe finding a foreclosed condo unit in the area would be a better idea. There would be some initial clean up and maintenance, but you may get it at a price that would allow you to recoup costs and posibly get to even.
I'm able to get you in touch with a lender that would be able to see if you qualify for a mortgage.
Thanks for your time,
Web Reference: http://www.fazhomes.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 10, 2009
In my opinion, the reality is that you would probably be best served by renting. Normally a buyer would need to plan on living in a home for 3+ years in order to ensure that they break even when selling. It takes a while to build up enough equity in the home to cover the costs of selling when you leave. In the current market conditions here, the appreciation may not be fast enough to cover that equity growth in 2-3 yrs, and you would end up in a financial position that would be no better (and possibly worse) than if you would have simply rented for the entire time.

The other thing to consider is the fact that YOU are responsible for the property if you own it, rather than being able to have the landlord take care of all the details while you are focused on your studies.

I hope that helps.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 10, 2009
Hi Dnanz, most of the properties that will be within immediate walk distantce are campus dorms. The closest for sale housing will likely be the U Flats or the M Flats. Both are condo projects right on the edge of campus and are within 15 mins walking distance to the Lillehei Institute.

You can find those projects and other nearby ones in our directory here:

I have a studio condo at the M Flats that will be coming up for sale after the holidays. It's probably the most affordable real estate you can buy that close to U of M campus. Contact me directly if you'd like more info on it.

Our group does rentals too. Check out our web site for those options.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 10, 2009
The Instutute is by the Mississippi River which has many walking and bike paths. Right now there are no properties for sale within walking distance. You would probably be better off renting.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 10, 2009
The Lillehei Institute is right in the heart of the University of Minnesota Campus. There is ample housing within walking distance from there, although there will be quite a few dorms as well. I can set you up a search and help you find a mortgage. What time frame are you planning on moving here? Feel free to contact me I can determine your needs.

Joel Friday
Web Reference: http://JoelFridayHomes.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 10, 2009
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