The economy and the real estate market are finally on the upswing after the ‘Great Recession’. However, in many locations, the housing market is still slow.
Homeowners who want their houses to sell need to do some homework before putting up that For Sale sign. Here are several tips to help your house sell sooner rather than later.
The Price Is Right
A house priced too high will languish on the market. Before listing your home for sale, make sure the price is appropriate.
Look at the prices of recently sold homes in your neighborhood. Focus on houses of similar size and condition to yours to find the best comparable sales prices.
Also, it may be worth having your home appraised to ensure that the list price is close to the actual market value.
Lean, Mean, Cleaning Machine
Prospective buyers want to see a pristine house. Make your home look perfect, inside and out, before you list it. Stop putting off all those repairs. Replace the cracked window, and fix that leaky faucet!
Curb appeal is a huge selling point. Your yard should be neatly trimmed and completely clean. It’s time to put away the garden gnome. Consider hiring a professional landscaper to make your house stand out from the crowd.
The inside of your house should be spotless. Research home staging or hire a professional stager to prepare your home for listing. At the very least, de-clutter your house and remove all personal items. Prospective buyers want to imagine a house as their home, not yours.
Strike A Pose
Photographs accompanying a MLS listing are typically a buyer’s first introduction to a house. Buyers often dismiss a house based on photographs alone, so make sure that yours are the best quality possible. Hire a professional photographer. Make sure your house is clean and well-staged. More photos are always better than less.
A good real estate agent is key to selling your house quickly. Find an agent experienced in selling homes in your community and who has a well-organized marketing plan. A good agent will not only give you the above tips, but will also customize them to the demands of your neighborhood.
Pick up the phone today and chat with a real estate agent for more information while weeding the flower bed or de-cluttering the den. Soon enough, you’ll be loading boxes onto a moving van as you journey onto your next adventure.
When you are looking for a new property, you might find yourself booked into looking at 5-6 properties in one day. In these situations, it can be difficult to remember all of the features that each property had.
You will be left wondering which one had the balcony with the great view, or the extra-large closet space in the bedroom.
If you want to be able to look back on the homes you visited and remember their features more easily, it can be very helpful to bring a camera with you to the showing and to take photos of the property.
It can also be helpful when only one partner is able to attend the viewing, so that way they can show the other partner the details of the house. However, could this be considered an invasion of privacy and offensive to the home owners?
Public Or Private Space?
Some homeowners have absolutely no problem with you taking photos of the house when you view it so that you can reference those photos later. However, other home owners really don’t like it when buyers take photos inside the home – because they consider this an invasion of their private space.
If you just bring out your camera and start snapping away, you might make them very uncomfortable.
It Never Hurts To Ask
When you go to a house showing, it is always a good idea to ask whether or not the owner would mind if you take a photo. If they say no, you shouldn’t push them too much or you might make a bad impression – which will decrease your chances of your offer being chosen.
Instead, you can simply make notes on the features of the house so that you can remember later.
Remember, when you are viewing a property it helps to take photos – but make sure that you ask first! If you have any other questions about buying a home, or are looking for real estate advice, contact your trusted real estate professional today.
Most people don’t know whether or not a single missed mortgage payment can have serious consequences for their credit score.
The good news is that there are things that can be done to mitigate the damage and help anyone who has missed a payment repair their credit. What are some options to help homeowners get back in the good graces of their creditors?
Own Up To The Mistake
The best thing to do is to admit that the payment was missed and immediately make amends for it. For the most part, mortgage lenders are sympathetic to the fact that people miss payments for reasons that may be beyond their control.
By calling the lender as soon as it appears that a payment may be late or not forthcoming at all, it is easier to make arrangements to roll that payment back into the mortgage or take other steps to decrease the odds of a negative remark being made on a credit report.
Don’t Let A Single Missed Payment Turn Into Multiple Missed Payments
While a single missed payment can hurt a credit score, it is important to not compound the mistake by missing more payments. In some cases, someone may decide to make up for the late payment before making any further payments.
However, that only makes the mistake worse because a borrower will be considered late on all subsequent payments. It is better to make the most current payment on time and make the late payment the secondary priority.
Hire A Third-Party If Necessary To Negotiate A Loan Modification
It is important to not let emotion get in the way of negotiating a modification to a mortgage. When a borrower hires a credit counselor or a bankruptcy attorney to talk his or her creditors, the negotiations can stay professional and on topic.
In most cases, a lender will be willing to make modifications for those who need them because it is better to get the money from the borrower willingly instead of having to go through a foreclosure proceeding.
While a missed mortgage payment can be bad news for a credit score, it is possible to make amends for the missed payment while minimizing long-term damage to a borrower’s credit score. By owning the mistake, staying current on all future payments and working with a third-party, it may be possible for a lender to forget that the missed payment ever happened.
If you’re thinking of buying a home, you’ve probably been thinking a lot about your credit score as well. Credit scores control so much of what we do in the world of finances, but what does your credit score really have to do with your mortgage? Here are three ways that your credit score could impact your mortgage application.
Your Credit Score Affects Your Ability To Get A Mortgage
The first thing your credit score tells a lender is whether they should lend to you at all. In some cases, if you have a very low credit score, you may not be able to obtain a mortgage at all.
Different lenders will have different criteria for determining safe and unsafe lending situations. Typically, if you have a score below the 600 mark, you’ll have trouble obtaining a mortgage.
If you’re worried about a low credit score, don’t despair – you can still get a mortgage, you just might have to work a little harder to get one. Some lenders will still lend to people with lower credit scores (just make sure you’re approaching legitimate lenders and not mortgage scam artists). Or, if time is on your side, you can work toward building up your credit score so that when it comes time to take out a mortgage, your score will be more appealing to lenders.
Your Credit Score Affects What Types Of Mortgages You Can Obtain
The second thing a lender learns from your credit score is which types of mortgages you qualify for. If a lender sees you as a higher risk, they won’t necessarily be willing to offer you just any old mortgage.
In most cases, if you have a credit score of less than 620, you won’t qualify for a conventional mortgage. In addition, if you have a lower credit score, you may have to make a larger down payment in order to qualify for the type of mortgage you want.
Your Credit Score Affects Your Interest Rate
The final thing that a lender learns from your credit score is what type of interest rate they’re willing to offer you. As a general rule, the higher your credit score, the lower the interest rate.
However, just because you have a high credit score, that doesn’t mean you’ll automatically get a great mortgage rate. There’s more that goes into the price of a mortgage than just the interest rate, so watch out for additional factors like extra fees, mortgage insurance, lock-in periods, and so on.
Your credit score tells a lender a lot about what type of borrower you are. Ultimately, a higher credit score means that you’ll be able to borrow money at a lower interest rate. But if your score is low, don’t worry – there’s a lot you can do to bring up that score before you apply for a mortgage, so don’t throw in the towel just yet!
Last week’s economic news brought several housing-related reports, which indicated varying results in terms of gauging the economic recovery. FHFA reported slower growth of home prices associated with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgages, but sales of existing homes as reported by the National Association of REALTORS® surpassed expectations and May’s reading. Sales of new homes slumped to their lowest level in three months. Weekly jobless claims were lower than expected and also lower than for the prior week.
FHFA Home Prices Grow at Slower Rate, Existing Home Sales Higher than Expected
The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) reported that the average sale price of homes associated with mortgages owned or backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac grew by.40 percent in May with year-over year growth of 5.90 percent. While national home price readings continue to rise, they are doing so at a slower pace since 2013′s rapid appreciation of average home prices.
Sales of previously owned homes reached their highest level in eight months in June. Existing home sales surpassed expectations and May’s reading in June, with sales of pre-owned homes at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.04 million units. Analysts forecasted sales of existing homes at 5.00 million against May’s reading of 4.91 million existing homes sold.
New Home Sales Fall Short in June
New home sales did not achieve the expected volume for June. The reading of 406,000 new homes sold was less than the expected reading of 475,000 new homes sold. Projections were based on the original May reading of 504,000 new homes sold, but this was downwardly revised to 442,000 new homes sold in May. Builders were said to be cautious about over-extending themselves are focused on new home construction in high-demand areas where home prices are higher. Homes are less affordable in such areas, which impacts lower sales volume.
Freddie Mac: Mortgage Rates Steady for 30-year FRM
The average rate for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage was unchanged at 4.13 percent with average discount points also unchanged at 0.60 percent according to Freddie Mac’s weekly survey of mortgage rates. The average rate for a 15-year fixed rate mortgage rose by three basis points to 3.26 percent with discount points higher at 0.60 percent. The average rate for a 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage was two basis points higher at 2.99 percent with discount points ten basis points higher at 0.50 percent.
Weekly Jobless Claims Lowest since 2006
A major consideration for home buyers is stable employment. Recent reports suggest that the labor market is expanding; the Weekly Jobless Claims report continued this trend with a lower than expected reading of 284,000 new jobless claims filed against expectations of 310,000 new claims and the prior week’s reading of 303,000 new jobless claims. Analysts found the declining number of new jobless claims consistent with lower unemployment rates, but cautioned that sustained weekly jobless claims readings lower than 300,000 are more consistent with a national unemployment rate of 5.00 percent or less.
This week’s scheduled economic news will add further insight to housing market trends with the release of Pending Home Sales for June and the Case-Shiller Home Price Index report for May. The Bureau of Labor Statistics will also release July’s Non-Farm Payrolls report and National Unemployment report. The Federal Reserve is set to release its customary statement in the aftermath of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting that concludes on Wednesday.