Have you recently purchased a home or you’re considering purchasing? You’re probably doing a little bit of research on how to find the best home loan, the best rates and of course, the best house for your needs and budget. There are several things you can do while looking for homes but once you already purchased a home there are 10 things you should immediately do once you move in. [Read more…]
Buying or selling real estate in California’s Tri-Valley area and the Bay Area real estate market is a very unique experience when you choose to work with a Tri-Valley Real Estate Broker. I don’t only love where I live, I have a deep working knowledge of the area that is much more in-depth and wide than what you would expect from a local Realtor. When most area brokers cover one or two Bay area counties at the most, I have hometown experience in various markets including San Ramon, Pleasanton, Livermore, Dublin, Danville, and Fremont. Based in San Ramon, service Alameda and Contra Costa County as well as individual communities and towns. In an effort to create a more valuable service for my clients, Key to the Bay maintains all continuing education courses and connections to the local MLS. With my top local expertise, state of the art technology and time tested industry experience, your experience will make navigating even the most complex transaction smooth and easy. [Read more…]
For those that live in California’s Tri-Valley area, you know the prices are pretty high compared to the rest of the country but can you still get a deal? It may all come down to finding tricks of the trade, unique buying strategies and investing a little bit of time and research in order to find the right property a great deal. Here are some unique ways in order to get a great deal on your next Tri-Valley home.
#1. Pay cash.
Now, I understand that not everybody can but if you can, it really is one of the best ways to get a better deal. Sellers see cash is a great opportunity to get the home sold quickly and close fast. If this is something that you can manage you’ll usually have a shorter escrow. And save money on lots of closing costs and of course paying cash to save you hundreds of thousands in interest.
#2. Purchase a home in a developing neighborhood.
This is where a lot of research really comes into play. You want to have a great buyers agent that understands exactly what you’re trying to accomplish and then researches neighborhoods, the type of home you’re looking for and great deals in order to make a move on the right property. The best way to do your research is to pay attention to news broadcasts, business journals and local city websites about new construction and changes happening in a particular neighborhood. If it looks like a neighborhood is transitioning from lower-income into renovated homes or perhaps they are tearing down an old abandoned strip mall in order to develop a Starbucks and more modern conveniences, this might be the perfect time to buy a home in the neighborhood. You’re likely to get a great deal especially if you combine a lot of these tactics when purchasing the home.
#3. Consider a fixer-upper.
This is definitely something to strongly consider and research before you pull the trigger. You don’t want to buy a home that requires you to put more money into it and you’re going to get out of it. By coupling this with buying a home in a developing neighborhood you can also gain quite a bit of equity on the backend. You could save a lot of money by doing most of the remodeling yourself but you’ll want to have a home inspection and understand how much money you’ll be putting into the fix-up before closing.
#4. Buy at an auction.
Even though foreclosures are down across the country some homes are still going through the process. It’s these homes that typically end up at an auction and bidders can likely get a bargain. However, you’ll probably be in competition with investors and those that by home specifically to flip and many times they require and all-cash payment. But, if you can do it, you’re likely to get a great deal. Keep in mind that these homes are usually in poor condition so be sure to check them out before bidding and if you buy in a developing neighborhood, that’s all the better.
If you’re looking for the best deal throughout the Tri-Valley area and you need an agent on your side to help facilitate the transaction and do the research for you contact my office today. I’d be happy to set up a meeting with you about what you are looking for and start the research process to get you the right property for your needs.
Buying a home is a big step and an exciting one too so you want to make sure that you don’t make any mistakes during the home buying process. Now, this is not to say that is very easy to make these mistakes but sometimes, unknowingly, homebuyers can make a lot of mistakes during the mortgage process of the just don’t realize can harm their chances of actually getting a loan. When buying a home in the Tri-Valley area I urge all of my buyers to get pre-approved first. This is usually the first mistake many buyers make.
Tri-Valley Mortgage Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
Not getting Pre-Approved.
This is where you actually sit down with a lender and figure out how much money you can spend on a house. The lender will determine how much income you’re receiving each month and how much is going out in debts, loans and basic utilities. From there, the lender will determine how much in a monthly mortgage payment you can handle which will relate to the total cost of a home. This also is a way to determine what your interest rate will be based on your credit history, report and score. Many homebuyers feel that they can simply enter some information on a mortgage calculator to determine their price range but unfortunately, if they’ve not gone through lender, their financing is not secured. Sellers look for secure financing and low risk offers. By being prepared with a preapproval letter ahead of time, you can ensure the seller that you’ve already done your financial homework.
Changing your identity.
This might sound like a crazy task but you might be surprised as to how often this happens. For instance: if a couple is planning on getting married and they’re buying a house at the same time, between the time the couple was approved for a loan versus when it closes, the wife’s last name could’ve changed. This is changing your identity and it could really negatively affect your chances of getting a home loan. Yes, you are the same person but don’t make any of these major identity or name changes until the property closes.
Making large purchases before closing.
Once the lender has determined how much you can afford you don’t want to change that in any way. This means it is not the time to finance a vehicle, spend large amounts on new furniture or other major appliances or take out loans of any kind. Consider freezing all of your assets, liabilities, loans and big spending until the closing is completed.
Not answering questions to your escrow or lender in a timely manner.
Everyone is working towards the closing date. There are numerous parties involved in the buying and selling of real estate and anything can hold up that process. Make sure you respond to phone calls and requests in a timely manner and don’t get frustrated if escrow or title officers ask for more identification or specific documents. They need to make sure that you are the correct person buying the home and that your identity is protected. Also consider all costs involved and ask about the costs including taxes, HOA dues, insurance and appraisals.
By keeping all of these things in mind you can ensure that your deal will close on time without a lot of hiccups. Of course, every single transaction is different so even if you’ve done everything possible those rare instances can happen or things simply fall through. By avoiding all of these mistakes you have a better chance at setting yourself up for successful homebuying purchase. Tri-Valley Mortgage Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
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If you’ve never written of a real estate offer before the process might seem overwhelming and confusing but it doesn’t have to be. One of the biggest things I tell any potential homebuyer is to make sure you have your own buyers agent before jumping into the real estate market. Buyers agent works solely for the homebuyer helping them throughout the process, offering tips, suggestions and advice not just on placing the offer, but on home inspections, financing, appraisals and anything else that might come along during the process. [Read more…]
The word recession might scare some people but this is definitely not the 2008 housing market. Still, anyone looking to buy a house may want to do so before the recession, of course. The last thing you want is for the tides to turn the minute you buy only to now owe more than your home is worth. And since nobody knows for sure and we can only go on economic predictions, conventional indicators such as unemployment rates, mortgage rates, and construction levels are currently very healthy. [Read more…]
Buying a condominium or a townhouse for that matter is very similar to a single-family home but there are distinct differences. You will be dealing with the homeowners association when you buy into a condo or a townhouse community, very similar to a subdivision that might be gated or part of an HOA. Not only will you be paying a monthly mortgage payment along with principal, interest, and homeowners insurance but you’ll also be paying fees directly to the homeowners association. There are specific questions you should ask before buying a condominium. With so many townhouse/condo associations and developments throughout the Tri-Valley area, this is a common issue that I have with a lot of homebuyers. It’s best to understand the implications and the details of buying a condo before jumping into the transaction. [Read more…]
Most people understand what a real estate agent is and does. A real estate agent is not just simply a job but a licensed position that requires continuing education to maintain their license and keep their job.For most people, the legalities and details of buying and selling property is not something that they want to deal with on their own. Many homeowners feel that they can try to sell their property on their own first, and if that doesn’t work, hire the help of a real estate professional. Many first-time homebuyers don’t even realize that it can benefit them to have their own agent when buying a property, rather than going with the listing agent of the home they chose. This is where a buyers agent, a listing agent and dual agency come into play. [Read more…]
With the onslaught of shows like Fixer Upper, Flip That House, and other similar shows, the appeal for fixer-uppers has been more prominent than ever, but are they really a good buy? Before you launch into a full-on HGTV project, here are some things to know about a fixer-upper.
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You may have been toying with the idea of upgrading your home or upsizing for several months now, maybe even several years, how do you know you’re really ready to take on a different house? While nobody really loves the thought of moving, sometimes the idea of more space is really what will prompt you to make the move. As an agent, I’ve seen a lot of different families and experience a lot of different situations so if you’re considering moving or upgrading your home your five signs to know that you’re ready for that move. [Read more…]