Thursday, January 12, 2017

Thinking of Selling Your Home... Read This!

I always urge home buyers to think long term - not necessarily about the years of mortgage payments but rather about when the time comes to sell.   After all, unless it is a retirement home, most buyers will not be living the rest of their lives in the house.

This long term thought is especially important when a property has some distinguishing quality that may not be appealing to most others.

Still, more often, the realities (and challenges) of selling a home do not become clear until well into the process.    Hopefully, the light bulb comes on before the omissions/commissions translate to dollars lost.
For those who may one day sell a house the below list should be reviewed before the time comes.   Many of these are the opinion of the writer, only.  Some are common sense.
  • Being healthy (condition) is always better than an insurance policy (home warranty) that pays and helps deal with problems later.   Offering a home warranty (insurance, sort of) does not compensate for poorly maintained/prepared homes. 
  • Add ons and improvements should be done without an expectation of an expected return of investment.   It is all about what an owner likes now when it comes to improvements. 
  • Over-improvements don't mean much.  If a simple pool (no screen enclosure, no salt system, end of life equipment)  adds 22% to the price of your home then consider it an over-improvement.   Prospective buyers will!  There is never a 1:1 return on investment. Buyers do not care what you paid for anything!
  • Not everyone in Florida wants a pool, really!   Just because someone is moving to Florida does not mean they absolutely must have a home with a pool.
  • Real estate brokers are not created equal.   Being a "big box" brokerage does not mean there is an audience size advantage. Size does not matter - its the message and method of delivery. 
  • Functional obsolescence must be priced out and not explained in.  Trying to rationalize  (marketing as vintage, retro, etc.)  structural design and preferences of decades ago rarely translate to value today.
  • Colors and style do matter.  Tacky rarely sells.  Of course, tacky is in the eye of the beholder!  Buyers know what they want and understand what they see.  Piecemeal (found) updating and rehab looks like piecemeal updating.  
  • Staging can help sell your home.  When getting your home ready for selling remember a great staging job will not overcome deficiencies in design, structure or condition.  Your house is what it is.
  • Outside often reflects inside.   The outside of a house is almost always an indicator of how well the inside is maintained.   If the yard is neglected, paint is fading, plants are dead it is quite likely the inside will show neglect.  It all starts with curb appeal.
  • Location can't be changed unless its an RV.    A new coat of paint will not change the zip code.  The house may look great but it will always be location, location, location. 
  • Price should reflect three things if a seller is motivated: condition, location and competition.  Proper pricing takes into account issues.   If your house is just like the rest, then the price will be pretty much just like the rest!  
  • Quick closings are always preferable.  The longer the time between the contract and the scheduled closing the greater the chance something will happen to derail the transaction.
  • Memories are mobile.    Sometimes sellers attempt to price in their memories when they are trying to sell their home.  If memories could have a price tag associated with them you can be sure the seller's price will not be anywhere near a prospective buyer's value.
  • Emotions must be contained.  Selling a home requires sellers to keep emotions in check. When deciding on a listing price for your home an unemotional cost-benefit analysis is a good starting point.
Value, much like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. 

When buying, prospective buyers will find reasons to pay less.  When selling, prospective sellers will find reasons to price their home higher.   A good, local knowledgeable Realtor, whether working with buyer or seller, is critical.

Ready to buy or sell in Viera, Florida?  Call or text me at 321-693-3850 if I can help!

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Don't Read This Real Estate Article.....

..... unless you are seeking information about buying a home in Florida.

Considering a move to Florida?  If so, begin with these ten  articles.
If you are ready to buy a home in Melbourne, Florida or the planned unit development of Viera, please give me a call at 321-693-3850.

Have other questions about buying or selling a home in Florida?  Send me an email or give me a call!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Rockledge, Florida Home For Lease - 3BR 2BA 2 CAR GARAGE $1,350

Available now!  This move in ready Rockledge home for $1,350 a month, one year lease!

Three bedrooms two bath two car garage concrete block stucco home in the centrally located Three Meadows development.   Built in 1995, this smoke free home is in great condition and is located near excellent schools, shopping, several golf courses.

With beaches, Patrick Air Force Base, Kennedy Space Center as well as major Melbourne employers within easy commute, this home will not last.

Open floor plan with 1,320 sq.ft. under air.  The enclosed, tile back porch easily cooled as well!

Features gas heat and water heater.  Sprinkler system on well water.   Carpet in bedrooms, laminate in living room and dining area.  Tile kitchen and baths.   Quiet city street, sidewalks and more!


Send me a text or call 321-693-3850 for more information.

Your Credit Report and Buying a Home

The first step in the home buying process involves obtaining a mortgage.   Most often prospective home buyers seek the assistance of a mortgage lender to obtain a mortgage pre-approval before looking at their first home.

The mortgage pre-approval is often confused with the mortgage pre-qualification.  But these are total different items.

A mortgage pre-qualification is a simple process.  And when it comes to mortgages simple is not good enough!

Mortgage pre-qualification applicants provide information about their income and expenses.  Based on that information the lender can give a general idea of their likely approval mortgage amount. 

But the mortgage pre-qualification is not the same as a mortgage pre-approval.  And sellers (and real estate agents) place little faith in the pre-qualification. 

But the mortgage pre-approval is different. 

While the pre-qualification is a simple, cursory look the mortgage pre-approval is a serous look at a prospective buyer's fiscal situation and the state of their credit. 

This involves much more than just answering a few questions and get a letter. 

The mortgage pre-approval involves providing proof of income.  Lenders will verify employment.  They will look at W-2 forms and copies of tax returns.  They will ask questions.  They will seriously review the prospect's credit report.

Of all these items the one that can often slow up the process is the credit report.   Obtaining a credit report is not a problem.  Having a correct credit repeat can be a major roadblock!

In today's high technology world identity theft happens.  Sometimes the wrong person's information ends up on a credit report.  Sometimes wrong accounts get listed.  Sometimes negative reports may still be reflected after they should have fallen off. 

When one is seeking a mortgage fr a home purchase is not the time to find these problems because sometimes the problems can't be fixed quickly.

As a matter of routine everyone should review their credit report.  It is free - Get Your Free Annual Credit Report.

A few final thoughts about credit reports and mortgages....
  • A mortgage pre-approval letter from a local lender is often the difference between one offer being accepted versus another.
  • The approved amount is not the must spend amount.  This is where your local real estate agent can help keep you grounded!
  • Mortgage pre-approval letters can expire.  Most sellers want a recent letter.
Here are a few links about the home buying process.

Considering buying a home in Melbourne, Florida?  Call or text me at 321-693-3850 if I can help in any way!