|  Purchasing a Home, Real Estate News, Resources to Hire Professionals, Selling a Home

7 Things You Must Do When Relocating

Anytime you relocate to a new area, whether it’s a city just a few miles away or across the country, you face a unique set of challenges.

The housing market, the transit, and even the weather may not be what you’re used to. Planning your move can be difficult, too, since you need to coordinate when, where, and how you’ll be moving your belongings to a new area.

Because moving to a completely new area means learning about a new housing market and a new community, we wanted to share a few helpful r...

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 |  Financial, Purchasing a Home, Real Estate News, Resources to Hire Professionals

Transaction Documents for the Buyer

When you walk away from the closing table with a big stack of papers, know what to file away for future reference.

Loan estimate
Your lender is required to provide you with this three-page document within three business days of receiving your loan application. It will show estimates for your interest rate, monthly payment, closing costs, taxes, and insurance. You’ll also learn how your interest rate and payments could change in the future, and whether you’ll incur penalties for paying off the loan early (called “prepayment penalty”) or i...

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 |  Company News, Financial, Home Maintenance, Purchasing a Home, Selling a Home

Trees Can Increase Your Property Value

You probably don’t think much about the trees on a home’s property unless they pose an immediate threat to the structure. But you may not be aware of how much value trees hold and how they can affect the price of your listing. John Palmer, an arborist who is certified by the International Society of Arboriculture, reveals the true benefits and liabilities of trees, what buyers should look for in home landscaping, and what sellers can do to protect the value of their trees.

Can trees actually affect the prope...

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 |  Company News, Home Maintenance, Purchasing a Home, Real Estate News, Resources to Hire Professionals

Your Final Walk Through

Closing time is hectic, but you should always make time for a final walk-through to make sure
that your home is in the same condition you expected it would be. Here’s a detailed list of
what to check for on your final walk-through.

  • Basement, attic, and every room, closet, and crawl space have been checked.
  • Requested repairs have been made.
  • Copies of paid bills and warranties are in hand.
  • No major, unexpected changes have been made to the property since last viewed.
  • All items included in the sale price—draperies, lighting fixtu...
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 |  Company News, Home Maintenance, Horticulture/Environment, Purchasing a Home, Real Estate News, Resources to Hire Professionals

Green Home Terms

Whether you’re building the home of your dreams or looking for an existing unit, there’s a lot of data involved in finding the right environmentally friendly dwelling. Here’s a breakdown of the different certification systems for energy-efficient homes.

RESNET
The Residential Energy Services Network is a not-for-profit corporation that develops industry-wide standards and rules for energy efficiency ratings and certification systems for buildings. In addition to overseeing the HERS index (see below), RESNET certifies contractors of all ty...

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 |  Company News, Financial, Purchasing a Home, Real Estate News, Resources to Hire Professionals

Questions to Ask the Condo Board

Before you purchase a condo, you should have an attorney review property documents for you. However, you should contact the board yourself ahead of time. You’ll learn how responsive and organized its members are and be alerted to potential problems.

How many units are owner-occupied?
Generally, the higher the percentage of owner-occupied units, the easier the condo will be to resell.

What covenants, bylaws, and restrictions govern the property?
Carefully read the bylaws to determine if you can abide by them. Also, find out if there are grandfather provisions th...

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 |  Financial, Purchasing a Home, Resources to Hire Professionals

Loans and Lending Terms

Below are a few terms that may assist you in your home search in terms of financing.   This is by no means a complete list or plan.  Be sure to always consult a trusted professional in these circumstances to protect your individual interest and rights.

Terms:  Mortgages are generally available at 15-, 20-, or 30-year terms. In general, the longer the term, the lower the monthly payment. However, shorter terms mean you pay less interest over the life of the loan.

Fixed vs. adjustable interest rates:  A fixed rate allows you to lock in a lo...

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 |  Company News, Financial, Purchasing a Home, Real Estate News, Resources to Hire Professionals

Prepare for House-Hunting

Know that there’s no “right” time to buy.   If you find the perfect home now, don’t risk losing it because you’re trying to guess where the housing market and interest rates are going.   Those factors usually don’t change fast enough to make a difference in an individual home’s price.

Don’t ask for too many opinions.   It’s natural to want reassurance for such a big decision, but too many ideas from too many people will make it much harder to make a decision.   Focus on the wants and needs of the people who will actually be ...

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