What You Need to Know about Inspection Notices

Buying a home involves more than the transfer of money; the buyer and seller must both complete and uphold certain processes that protect and respect all parties involved. A home inspection is one such process that is essential to ensure that the buyer is not investing in a property that will turn into a money pit. This means that any realtor must pay close attention to the results of a home inspection, and deliver proper inspection notices to the buyer and seller accordingly.

What Exactly Is a Home Inspection?

A home inspection is completed by a professional inspection specialist in order to provide an objective visual examination of the physical structure and systems of a home. This includes every major system from the roof down to the foundation: the heating, central air, interior plumbing, electric, roof, attic, walls, ceilings, floors, windows, doors, basement, and structural components. Read more

Why Every Homeowner Needs Flood Insurance

You may think that flood insurance is only a priority if you live near the Florida coast, but the truth is that every homeowner should carry some form of flood insurance for protection. Even without the ocean nearby, heavy rains, overflowing rivers, levee failure, and other unexpected problems can lead to flooding concerns nearly anywhere. Learning about the importance of flood insurance and obtaining it from a reliable source can make all of the difference in an emergency situation.

Flood Zones Vary By Location

Flooding is a common natural disaster in the United States, which is why FEMA uses a flood hazard mapping program to identify the risk of flooding in a specific area. Everybody technically lives in a flood zone, but the true risk of flooding varies by location. Nearly 20 percent of all flood insurance claims actually originate from homeowners living in low-risk flooding areas, which proves that no home is completely safe from flooding. Flash floods, melting snow, broken dams, and a number of other unexpected issues can all lead to flooding. Read more

How to Write Winning Real Estate Listings

You have a beautiful property that any future buyer would be lucky to invest in, but how can you pack all of your home’s features into an engaging listing that helps it sell? It doesn’t have to be difficult! These tips will help you write a winning real estate listing and sell your home faster than you thought possible.

Find the Right Balance of Description

You want to be descriptive, but not so descriptive that your listing becomes three pages long. As you describe the best parts about your home, make every word matter. Skip the subjective and cliche phrases like, “You’ll love making memories here” and instead opt for objective language that helps readers visualize the specific features of your home. Instead of “nice outdoor space,” write, “stone patio complete with firepit and garden view.” If you can mention each appealing aspect of your home in about 250 words total, you will have a winner.   Read more

Should Real Estate Agents Embrace Snapchat?

You may know Snapchat as the social media platform that uses real-time visual communication to connect friends in a totally unique way. Unlike Facebook or other social media giants, Snapchat seeks to help users communicate through the camera and create authentic screen-to-screen relationships. Though it’s incredibly popular among younger generations, it turns out that Snapchat isn’t just for teenagers! Real estate agents can actually find true value in using Snapchat to connect with their communities and foster familiarity with potential clients. Read more

What Should You Know about Refinancing?

Owning a home you love shouldn’t come at the expense of paying too much money each month to maintain your mortgage. This is why the option of refinancing is available. If you’re ready to lower your monthly payments, here’s what you should know.

What Exactly Does It Mean to Refinance?

Refinancing is essentially a second mortgage application process. Rather than sticking with the terms of your initial mortgage, you have the ability to apply for a new mortgage loan on new terms. This involves a new home appraisal, verification of employment and income, proof of ongoing debts, and more. Many people consider this option if interest rates have decreased since they obtained their first mortgage or if they now have a better credit score to secure an even better interest rate. Read more

When Real Estate and Technology Collide

There are few aspects of daily life that modern technology has not transformed, and real estate is no exception. Though it has long been commonplace for real estate agents to support home sales by listing properties online with pictures and descriptions, the technology utilized in real estate is quickly becoming even more sophisticated.

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Have Sellers Finally Gained Enough Equity to Upsize or Downsize?

Every adult in America distinctly remembers the recession of 2008 that led to a weak economy and housing crisis. Home prices plummeted between 2006 and 2012, and in 2008 the Case-Shiller home price index reported its single largest price drop on record. Despite the government’s $900 billion in special funding to the housing market, more and more homeowners found themselves living in homes suddenly worth less than what they owed.

This prospect of being “upside down” in a mortgage loan and devoid of equity sent many homeowners into foreclosure. Others had no choice but to continue making monthly payments in the hopes that their home values would recover in the future. According to real estate experts, homeowners looking to sell have finally found relief. Attom Data Solutions recently released a report that homeowners who sold in the first three months of 2017 achieved the highest average gains seen since 2007. Read more

Is It Possible to Simultaneously Sell Your Home and Buy Another?

Buying a house is an enormous undertaking,and so is selling your existing home. What happens when you find yourself needing to do both at once? Believe it or, it is possible to simultaneously sell your home, buy another, and keep your sanity in the process. Here is what you need to know!

First, Study Your Local Market

The 2017 housing market is expected to continue to become stronger, but it’s still important to investigate your own local market before deciding it’s time to sell your home and buy another. It could be that your market is specifically geared toward buyers or sellers for the time being, and that knowledge will help you strategize. Read more

Top Tricks for Enjoying a Smooth Home Closing

The process of purchasing a home involves a vast number of steps that finally culminate on closing day. Closing, also known as settlement, is a meeting between the home sellers, buyers, and any agents and representatives in order to sign documents that transfer property ownership. It is also the time to pay closing costs and escrow payments. As the very last requirement before your dream home is finally yours, closing day should be handled with the utmost attention-to-detail to ensure that everything runs smoothly. These tips will help you enjoy a simple and stress-free closing on your new home. Read more

Important Home Ownership Tax Implications You Don’t Want to Ignore

Is there a word in the English language that inspires more stress than “taxes”? Maybe not, but that doesn’t mean that taxes need to overwhelm you! If you are selling your home, chances are you won’t even need to consider paying taxes on your profit. But if you are one of the few who do, these tricks will help you maximize the amount of money you keep in your pocket.

You’ll Know You’re Exempt From Paying Taxes If… Read more