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20816 : Real Estate Advice

  • All9
  • Local Info1
  • Home Buying4
  • Home Selling1
  • Market Conditions1

Activity 67
Wed Mar 20, 2013
Brant Millham answered:
Stated income loans are no longer legal in the state of Maryland. However there are some options out there that may help. There are some programs out there that will use assets to compensate for lack of being able to document income. We are a direct lender as well as have the ability to broker to almost anyone. If you would like some information give me a call and we can discuss. 443-794-0331 ... more
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Thu Aug 25, 2011
Michael asked:
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Sun Nov 10, 2013
Scott Godzyk answered:
Condo fees are usually not negotiable, they are a set fee set by a hoa or condo board to cover the expenses of the hoa. You can ask for a copy of teh budget to see what is covered and ask for a copy of the monthly minutes to see what they are discussing or if there are any concerns you should be aware of.. ... more
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Fri Sep 16, 2011
Lise Howe answered:
I am a big believer in buying sensibly for your life as it is now. You can't predict what your future housing needs are going to be with any real degree of accuracy. Even if you are about to get married now and planning a huge family, your plans might change or you could decide to wait for 10 years to start your family. While it is always good to plan for the future, sometimes your future housing needs aren't a good fit for what you need right now. And you probably will move several times in your life as your needs change.

If it is a good deal now and you love the neighborhood, you should give it serious thought, and evaluate your other options for the same price point. Chances are they are going to be much further away or they will be in less appealing condition. Yes, the MPDU homes have a lot of restrictions, particularly on resale, but that becomes more important if the housing market sky rockets again, and you feel like you are leaving equity on the table because of the MPDU restrictions. As you know, your resale price is set by the MPDU guidelines rather than comparable non-MPDU homes, but it is unlikely that the market is going to sky rocket for a while, so I doubt you are going to be missing out on a significant increase in value, but you might be missing out on a wonderful home. I would be glad to speak with you further at 240-401-5577. Lise
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Mon May 16, 2011
Elliot Ward & The ReWard Team answered:

You should probably contact your listing agent for a copy or contact your agent's office manager.
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Thu Apr 28, 2011
Tony McMahon answered:
Sun Feb 10, 2013
Robert McArtor answered:
Wed May 2, 2012
Simone Bercu answered:
The cost depends on the size, type, age, condition, and location of the pool. It depends on who will care for it. Would you hire a service or maintain the pool yourself?

I sold a few homes with pools and the cost varied. The indoor pool owner did not use a service. He bought the chemicals in pill forms and that was the extent of his effort.

A service company can open the pool in the spring and close it in the fall for you. Your cost would be only the chemicals, as long as you do not mind the work. I would call Dixon Pool Service and others maybe to check prices.
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Wed Mar 16, 2011
Jim Paulson answered:
Simply put, term "mortgage" is used for the loan used to buy a home. Here in Idaho it is actually a deed of trust since a mortgage is used for property over 40 acres and a deed of trust for properties less than 40 acres. ... more
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Thu Feb 24, 2011
Lise Howe answered:
You might consider a wonderful building wotj a loft that I just saw on Ordway in DC. Please give me a call at 240-401-5577 and I would be glad to show you it.
Lise Howe
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Mon Oct 11, 2010
Craig Fauver answered:

Assessment values are used for tax purposes only and are not appraisals. In many areas of the US, tax assessments are far below appraised value and in other areas of the US tax assessments are far above appraised value. I am not sure about Montgomery County's exact guidelines for assessing properties, many counties use a straight formula that looks at lot size and living space and little else. Obviously, in the areas you specified location is going to play a major role in how much a property is actually worth.

To make sure you are getting the best deal, work with an agent who will provide you with a Competitive Market Analysis (CMA) for the properties you are interested in. It is not an appraisal, but it gives you a guideline of what the property is really worth, and then when you are ready to make an offer on a place you can include an appraisal contingency to make sure that if you offered $320,000 on a place that appraises for $315,000, you will not be required to continue at the price you offered.

If you are going to use an FHA loan an appraisal contingency will be automatic and you would only be able to purchase a property for more than appraised value if you were willing to pay the difference out of pocket.

If you are looking for a buyers agent I would be happy to help you in your property search and provide you with CMA's for property's you are considering.

Best ,
Craig Fauver

Cell: (202) 643-HOUSE
Toll-Free: (888) 814-4987
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Sat Aug 3, 2013
Gerard Dunn answered:
Carol - You should consider the security issues for the unit. Windows at ground level provide easy access for prowlers and predators.

Although you can find these properties for a cheaper price in Bethesda - you will have more trouble selling them when the time comes.

I have 3-4 listings in Bethesda - 1 block from Bethesda Row and less than 4 blocks from Metro's red line.

Can I help you find something in the area that may make sense?

Let me know!

Good luck!

Gerry Dunn
Associate Broker

Serving Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. for 28 years
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Wed Jun 1, 2011
Simone Bercu answered:
Termite infestation may have come about after the purchase. Since the inspection at the time of the purchase was clear, I doubt there is any recourse.
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Mon Jul 26, 2010
Sarah Toppins answered:
Do you mean 4710 Bayard? It's a short sale under contract with a contingency for third party approval through the end of the month.
0 votes 3 answers Share Flag
Wed Jul 7, 2010
Anna M Brocco answered:
Consider working with an agent of your own; he/she can locate properties that suit your needs, keep you informed as to market condition, provide any information needed, schedule showings, etc. In the meantime why not contact any local realty office(s) and inquire. Keep in mind that unless pre-approved, short sales are by no means fast sales, therefore don't overlook traditional sales as some may turn out to be much better bargains. ... more
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Thu Jun 24, 2010
Don Tepper answered:
Real estate commissions are negotiable. Best thing to do is to contact several different agents and talk to them.
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Thu Aug 14, 2014
Don Tepper answered:
I'm not aware of any published research on the health effects of living close to a major highway. Or, to be more precise, nothing that would be useful.

See these representative studies (from PubMed)

DNA damage:

Infant exposure to fine particulate matter and traffic and risk of hospitalization for RSV bronchiolitis in a region with lower ambient air pollution

Effects of long-term exposure to traffic-related air pollution on respiratory and cardiovascular mortality in the Netherlands: the NLCS-AIR study

Long-term exposure to traffic-related air pollution and lung cancer risk

Risk of hypertension from exposure to road traffic noise in a population-based sample

So, while there's plenty of research, none of it will be particularly useful.

As a practical matter, homes near the Beltway--when you can hear the traffic noise--will cost substantially less. I'm more familiar with the Virginia portion of the Beltway (around North Springfield up to around Tyson's), as well as stretches along I-66 near Fairfax, where there's the same problem. The louder the noise, the lower the price. Interestingly, there isn't a direct correlation between noise and distance. It also has to do with topology (are there hills or other buildings in between) as well as the sound barriers along 495.

There's also the issue of pollution and particulates. That, too, will lower the value of properties near the Beltway.

So, it's a trade-off. You should be able to get a home for much less if you can hear (or smell--or in the winter, with the leaves off the trees) see the Beltway. On the other hand, it'll be more difficult to sell. As for the health hazards--the concerns would be the particulates (the tiny dust-like particles) as well as the gases. There's no question that they're not good, but just how bad they are is likely still an open question.

Hope that helps.
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Wed Jun 16, 2010
Carole answered:
I have worked w/ Vicki Anoff, a licensed Interior Designer who lives and works in Bethesda. She has redone my own home and the home of friends AND has helped me w/ design decisions on a spec house I just built and I received two contracts almost immediately. She can work w/ any style and beautifully incorporates your own favorite pieces. She really listens to what YOU want instead of trying to impose her own tastes and she makes sure you are aware of the design principles involved in her suggestions. She has painters, carpenters, drywaller, flooring guys, etc that she uses regularly and she coordinates and schedules everything if you want her to. If you want to do some of that kind of work yourself, you can do that too.

She is very cost conscious and if you are on a budget she looks for bargains for you. She has sent me to Pier One for a lamp, to her framing store where I got a big discount, shown me items from magazines, from the internet etc. . If you are not on a budget, she has entree to the Design Center in D.C. and all the high end stores. She is great w/ colors and brings samples to you so your time doesnt have to be spent hunting for things. Her phone is 301-320-9100; email is She has a website but I am not sure what it is called. When I saw her work at a friends house, I just knew she was the one I wanted to work with.
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Wed Oct 6, 2010
LeiYana Stevenson answered:

Location! Location! Location! What makes Promenade Towers in Bethesda great for residents and visitors also makes it great for business. The near proximity of the red Metro Line makes it one of the most convenient places to live. . walking distance to the metro!

The condos are NOT FHA approved.

Check out the link can easily plan your trips through Metro Opens Doors.

Make it a great day,

LeiYana Wilson-Stevenson
RE/MAX Realty Services
4825 Bethesda Avenue
Bethesda, MD 20814
Direct: (301) 437-3448
Fax: 301-652-4444
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Fri Jun 25, 2010
Nicole Neale answered:
It is near the red line BUT not really walking distance UNLESS you like to walk. everyone is different. I have not done an FHA for anything esle outside of single family and town homes. I do remember a case study I recently heard about trying to go FHA and not being very successful. Wish you luck in your search and if you would like more info on another property Please let me know.
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