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Home Buying in Milwaukee County : Real Estate Advice

  • All66
  • Local Info4
  • Home Buying30
  • Home Selling14
  • Market Conditions2

Activity 165
Wed Jul 29, 2009
Keith Manson- Metro Milwaukee Wisconsin answered:
When buying a condo there are lots of factors you need to research. Including the finances of the condo association, up keep of the project, current sales and current listings in the project. Other things to consider are:The Pros and Cons of Condos

Condominiums and townhouses offer an affordable option to single-family homes in most areas. But consider these facts before you buy.

1. Storage. Some condos have storage lockers, but usually there are no attics or basements to store belongings.

2. Outdoors space. Yard and outdoor areas are usually smaller in condos, so if you like to garden or entertain outdoors, this may not be a good fit, however, if you hate yard work, this may be the perfect option for you.

3. Amenities. Many condo properties have swimming pools, fitness centers, and other facilities that would be very expensive in a single-family home.

4. Maintenance. Many condos have onsite maintenance personnel to care for common areas, do repairs in your unit, and let in workers when you’re not home.

5. Security. Many condos have keyed entries and or even door attendants. Plus, you’ll be closer to other people in case of an emergency.

6. Reserve funds and association fees. Although fees generally help pay for amenities and provide savings for future repairs, you will have to pay the fees agreed to by the condo board, whether or not you’re interested in the amenity or not.

7. Resale. The ease of selling your unit is more dependent on what else is for sale in your building, since units are usually fairly similar. Single-family homes usually are more individual.

8. Freedom. Although you have a vote, the rules of the condo association can affect your ability to use your property. For example, some condos prohibit home-based businesses. Others prohibit pets. Read the covenants, restrictions, and bylaws of the condo carefully before you make an offer.

9. Proximity. You’re much closer to your neighbors in a condo or town home. If possible, try to meet your closest prospective neighbors before a decision.

Keith Manson

First Weber Group
Certified Distress Property Expert
Greenfield, Wisconsin
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Wed Jul 29, 2009
Saundra Allman answered:
Hi Sarah: I have a large sphere of influence and can with your permission introduce to you someone on a referral basis. I work with professionals all across our nation. My social network is very large and I am in touch with my social network groups consistently and daily. Follow up is one of the many skills I have to communicate to see that the referring agent has connected with you and it is a great fit for relationship for your purchasing needs. I am from the Bay Area. I have enjoyed taking my children to play at Alameda Beach many, many times and have fond memories of enjoying them and appreciating that Alameda was only 20 minutes from where I lived in Fremont and Union City! Now I am in Humboldt County, and selling real estate all the way up here on the North Coast. To learn more about me and the properties I have listed to get a since of comfort for me to referr you to one of my valued colleagues please click the link below! One of my properties is a multifamily dwelling. 2 houses and a duplex on two parcels approved already for subdivsion into three parcels of 2500 sq. foot lots each. One could build three brand new homes! There are conditions that need to be met prior to map recordation. Town Cener Zoning is of tremendous value as this beautiful property has a future of potential multi use, one could build reatail, offices and retail on top, much the way they do in Fremont and Santana Row in San Jose. One of the homes will be vacant end of month, and opens the opportunity to a first time home buyer to live in that unit which is a 4 bedroom and 2 full bath unit, and keep the present long time tenants and collect rent on the other three units. This fabulous opportunity is in a small quiet town of Rio Dell in Humboldt County. It is neighbor to the historical town of Scotia known as a Loggers Town, which is now open to the public but past history was exclusive to the loggers. Very charming rural and beautiful country near the Eel River. I would love to hear from you again! Maybe you may know of someone interested in my sellers properties too! ... more
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Wed Jun 24, 2009
Debbie Bingham answered:
I'm sorry to hear you've had a bad experience with Realtors! You would think in a slower market, that agents would be thrilled to have someone inquire about their property listings. The real truth is NOT ALL REALTORS ARE CREATED EQUAL!. :)

If you need a referral to a competent agent in another state, First Weber has a great relocation department. I'd be happy to refer you to someone who will be happy to help you find what you're looking for. Just go to my website to contact me, I'd be happy to help!

Good luck to you!
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Sun Jun 21, 2009
Debbie Bingham answered:
There are advantages and disadvantages to both condos and single family homes. It really depends on what your needs are. Condos are pretty much maintenance free - no yard work, snow shoveling, etc., but you have close neighbors and less privacy.

Single family homes require regular maintenance, but they also have a better resale value, and you can enjoy your own yard, etc. There are a lot of condos sitting on the market right now!

I checked into the availability of active condo listings in both Cobblestone and Cordgrass. I didn't see any in the Cobblestone development, but found a 2 bedroom, 2 bath, with a 2.5 car garage in Cordgrass for $299,900.

Just doing a preliminary search for active condo listings in Franklin with 3 bedrooms - I found 49 units ranging in price from $126,900 to $659,000.

I'd be happy to assist you in whichever direction you choose to go. Just let me know how I can help you!
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Wed Jul 29, 2009
Debbie Bingham answered:
Hi Mia:

Congratulations on deciding you want to buy a home! I'll try to answer your all your questions, so you can know what to expect.

There are a lot of bank owned properties available right now, and many of them can be purchased at a great price! The problem with foreclosures is that they usually always are in need of repair. Everything from flooring, paint, bathroom fixtures, to plumbing, roofing, & electrical issues. Banks are hesitant to make loans on properties that need too many repairs to be made.

The good news is that WHEDA has started a new loan program called Neighborhood Advantage. This program assists buyers like you who want to purchase a foreclosed property, and can even assist you with down payment and closing costs with grant money.

With an FHA loan, you would have to have 3-3.5% of a down payment, and the property would have to pass an FHA inspection. Most foreclosed homes won't pass this inspection. With the WHEDA Neighbhood Advantage program, you would could have as little as $1000 of your own money as a downpayment, and the remainder would come from grants.

Although the WHEDA program doesn't use "credit scores" to determine credit worthiness, you would have to meet certain credit and income eligibility before they would issue you a loan. Your best bet would be to check out their website at: They can direct you from there.

To answer your last question, a land contract is a contract between a seller and a buyer where the seller provides the financing to the buyer at an agreed upon purchase price, and the buyer repays the loan in installments. The seller retains the title, while allowing the buyer to take possession of the property.

Once the full purchase price has been paid, along with any interest charged, the seller will convey title to the buyer. An initial down payment is usually required at the beginning of the loan, and a balloon payment is usually required at the end of the term. The down payment is an amount agreed upon between the buyer and the seller.

There is no official "list" of properties that are available for purchase by land contract, and you'll never find a forclosed or bank owned home that will accept this type of deal. Needless to say, they're a little hard to come by.

Good luck!

Debbie Bingham
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Thu Jun 4, 2009
Christa LaFarlette, Realtor answered:
I actually have---
And decided that I would only suggest this after there is short sale approval for the offer on the table. If for some reason it goes wrong it could be a problem to evict the person---and you would not want necessarily want the person in the home if it came back on market.
They should have a clause in their lease that says they can go month to month--or perhaps could find a month to month solution. Yikes! Good luck!
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Mon Oct 19, 2009
Betsy and Ken Head answered:
It depends on the the size of your home, there are no guidelines but you can look at other rentals in the area. A rent with option can get a better rent than a standard rent, with part of the rent going towards the purchase price. Good luck in finding a buyer. ... more
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Sat Apr 7, 2012
Chris Mabry SRS,e-PRO answered:
Depending on the age of your filing and the type of filing you may be out of luck for a few years. It typically takes 3 years of recovery to be approved to buy a home. Contact a local mortage broker and run the question by them. You never know! Good luck! ... more
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Mon Aug 10, 2009
Beth Jaworski answered:
Yes! You can go 5% with a conventional loan and 3 1/2% with an FHA loan. I recommend Michele Takach at Associated Bank (414) 303-8544.
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Thu Nov 20, 2014
None answered:
If you have two professionals that are manufacturer certified in this product say that it is installed improperly then your next course of action is to ask the agent to deliver a notice of defects to the seller (hopefully you are still within the time frame for your inspection contingency) along with the written reports from the inspector and the professionals stating that this is an improper installation. The seller then has 10 days to respond to this notice with a remedy to the situation or to produce reports from experts that say the install is to manufacturer specifications. If the seller does not offer to remedy the problem then you are out of the deal. If the seller elects to fix the problem and bring the siding install to manufacturer specs, or can prove that it is to manufacturer specs, then you are moving forward with your purchase unless you choose to consult an attorney and even then there is no guarantee that you will get out of the deal unscathed. Giving the seller the right to cure keeps them in the drivers seat, hopefully your agent explained that to you.

If your home inspection contingency has passed, then the situation is very different. By letting that deadline pass without delivering your notice of defects you have essentially said that you are OK with the home as is. Again, this is something a buyers agent would have explained to you.

I wish you good luck.
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Wed May 6, 2009
Mark Niedziejko answered:
MLS will most likely show the property as "Active w/ Offer". This lets you know there is an accepted offer but the property may still be shown if the seller wishes. Usually when all the contingencies are cleared MLS will be updated with "Pending". The updating in MLS is handled by the listing agent.

I would say most home inspections are coordinated through the listing agent and there are listing agents who will attend this. That is not unheard of.

From what I understand about what you are saying about the dating doesn't seem right but perhaps I am missing something.
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Sun Aug 2, 2009
Zmk answered:
Let me also clarify, I do truly understand the reasons to use a buyer's agent. But there have been a couple of properties for sale, where we believe it would be in our best financial interest to go through the listing agent - utilizing my attorney to protect me. ... more
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Thu May 11, 2017
Polly Briley answered:
Yes, you can ask, but the seller can also say no. A client I have did just that. It was a wise move as he adjusted his offer price based on that inspection. The offer was excepted.
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Wed Apr 15, 2009
Debby Thompson answered:
The answer is yes. Until your agent or you get the signed contract back it is no deal. It is the same way with a regular offer to purchase.
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Mon Oct 1, 2012
Kristin Noll answered:
It depends on the size of the condo. You could get up to $1,500 for an average 2 bedroom. But you'd have to get a really good deal in order to get cash flow and you'll be limited to the few associations which allow rentals. ... more
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Wed May 20, 2009
Beth Jaworski answered:
Hi Paul,

Yes, it does seem unusual, but as a Realtor since 1992, I can tell you this often happens! We joke about it at the office because it is almost inevitable - a property sits forever with no interest, but the minute we get an offer, everyone wants it! (This is especially true once we have an accepted offer). You can only offer what you are comfortable paying and if it does not work out, then that house was not for you. Good luck! ... more
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Tue Feb 24, 2009
Dallas Texas answered:
Each home submitting an offer stands alone, based on condition and etc.

Ask your buyers agent research property speak with listing agent. YOU ARE CORRECT not to offend a seller that can reduce your ability purchase a home.

Dallas Realtor and Consultant, Mortgage Loan Officer, Lecturer regarding Credit Repair
– Lynn A. Crosby
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Fri Jun 12, 2009
Penny O'Brien answered:
Sun Feb 8, 2009
Keith Manson- Metro Milwaukee Wisconsin answered:
The warranty deed does not clear the existing liens and emcumberances. I title policy should be completed and allow the seller to transfer the interest via warranty deed. A property can be transfered with liens if the title company insures over them and some emcombrances never go away unless someone takes action to address them. Don't assume a waranty deed will correct all problems! The title company should identify all liens that need addressing. The title company may not know about encomberances that need to be addressed but make sure you do and understand the issues associated with them. ... more
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Sun Jan 18, 2009
Debbie Bingham answered:

Here is a link to some information regarding the schools in the Wauwatosa area. I've also included a link to the City of Wauwatosa for you to gather some more information about the area. Hopefully this information will be helpful to you!

Debbie Bingham
First Weber Group
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