When is the best time to buy a house?
Some of the frequently cited reasons for buying a house include:
- You prefer to be an owner rather than a renter.
- You need a tax break. The mortgage interest deduction can make home ownership very appealing.
- You plan to stay in the house long enough for the appreciation to cover your transaction costs. The costs of buying and selling a home include real estate commissions, lender fees and closing costs that can amount to more than 10 percent of the sales price.
- You can afford the monthly payments.
- You can handle the maintenance expenses and headaches.
- You are not counting on price appreciation in the short term.
- You are not greatly concerned by dips in home values.
When buying a house, is a low offer a good idea?
While your low offer in a normal market might be rejected immediately, in a “buyer’s” market, a motivated seller will either accept or make a counteroffer.
Full-price offers or above are more likely to be accepted by the seller but there are other considerations involved:
- Is the offer contingent upon anything, such as the sale of the buyer’s current house? If so, a low offer, even at full price, may not be as attractive as an offer without that condition.
- Is the offer made on the house “as is,” or does the buyer want the seller to make some repairs or lower the price instead?
- Is the offer all cash, meaning the buyer has waived the financing contingency? If so, then an offer at less than the asking price may be more attractive to the seller than a full-price offer with a financing contingency.
What are the two most important factors when selling a house?
Price and condition are the two most important factors in selling a home, even in a down market. The first step is to price your home correctly. Use comparative sales information from your agent, or pay for a professional appraiser (usually $200 to $300) to objectively evaluate your home’s worth. Second, go through the house and repair any obvious cosmetic defects that could deter a buyer.
In a down market, you may have to consider lowering your price and/or making a major repair, such as replacing the roof, in order to lure a buyer. Also, make sure that your house gets the exposure it deserves through open houses, broker open houses, advertising, good signage and a listing in the local multiple listing service or in online listings.
If your house is not getting adequate exposure, talk with your agent or agent’s broker. If you’re still not satisfied that you are getting the service you need, you may want to switch agents.
What is a real estate Short Sale?
A short sale is a sale of property in which the proceeds from the sale fall short of the balance owed on the loan or loans secured by the property sold. In a short sale, the bank or mortgage lender agrees to discount a loan balance due to an economic or financial hardship on the part of the property owner in exchange for the sale of the property to a third party.
A short sale is typically executed to prevent a foreclosure. It is the sale of a home when the sale proceeds do not fully pay off the existing loan(s) and the lender(s) accept a discounted payoff to satisfy the loan(s). Lender negotiations are critical and require the expertise, experience and strong working relationships with mortgage companies and banks that are provided by short sale agents such as the AG Prime Realty agents.
What are the advantages of a Short Sale?
For you, the homeowner, advantages include avoidance of a foreclosure on your credit history. Having a foreclosure on your credit report is second only to bankruptcy and will substantially reduce your credit score. You may also have to wait several years to qualify for a mortgage again.
The impact of a short sale on your credit is much less severe than with a foreclosure. And, if buying a home is something you’d like to do in the future, if you successfully complete a short sale, in most cases, you may again qualify for a mortgage in as little as 18 months.
A short sale is typically faster and less expensive than a foreclosure and when you use the agents at AG Prime Realty to facilitate your short sale, there is NO COST to you.
I’m late on my mortgage and may be facing foreclosure, what do I do?
The first step is to contact us. AG Prime Realty can, and will assist you in understanding all of your options to avoid foreclosure. You’re not alone. Many distressed homeowners don’t know what to do, give up, and do nothing. That’s the worst thing you can do! You have other options. Let AG Prime Realty assist you in understanding your options and negotiate with your lender on your behalf.
Is a Foreclosure Sale and a Real Estate Owned Property (REO) Sale the same?
- The sale of REO (a bank owned property) is not the same as a property up for a foreclosure auction. When buying a property during a foreclosure sale, you need to be ready with cash in hand to pay the loan balance plus any interest and other fees accumulated during the foreclosure process. In exchange, you will receive the property “as is” which might include existing liens and even current occupants that need to be evicted.
By contrast, an REO is a much “cleaner” and attractive transaction. The REO is owned by the bank because the bank did not find a buyer during the foreclosure auction. The bank will see to the removal of tax liens, evict occupants (if needed) and generally prepare for the issuance of a title insurance policy to the buyer at closing.
Is REO a bargain?
It depends. While it’s true that the bank is typically anxious to sell the property quickly; the bank is also strongly motivated to get the highest price for it. When considering the value of REO property, look closely at comparable sales in the neighborhood and carefully calculate the time and cost of any needed repairs or remodeling to prepare the house for a move or resale. The bargains with money-making potential definitely exist, and many people do very well buying REO. AG Prime Realty specializes in finding these deals for our clients.
Ready to make an offer?
Typically the bank’s REO department will use a listing agent to get its REO properties listed on the local MLS. When we help you find a REO that interests you, before you make an offer on the property, we will contact either the listing agent or the REO department at the bank to find out as much information as possible about the condition of the property and how offers are received. We will also work with you in preparing an attractive offer which will include documentation of your ability to pay.
The bank may make a counter offer. In that instance, we will work with you to decide whether to accept their counter, or offer a counter to the counter offer. We will negotiate the best deal for you and make the process as easy as possible.