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Great News for Home Buyers!

by Desi Sowers

 

Great news for home buyers!  Mortgage interest rates continue their decline to historic lows with 30 year conventional, fixed rates around 4 3/8% and 15 year at around 4%.  FHA has also eased requirements.

 Right now is the perfect storm for home buyers. Historic low interest rates, extremely low home prices and motivated sellers. Buyers who can buy right NOW have an incredible opportunity!

If you would like information on how you can now purchase a home and take advantage of this once in a lifetime opportunity, please contact me - I'm here to help!

 

Homebuyer tax credit closing deadline extension filibustered

by posted by Desi Sowers

Homebuyer tax credit closing deadline extension filibustered

A Senate bill that would have delayed the closing deadline for the homebuyer tax credit until September 30 has been filibustered. All 40 Republicans and one Democrat voted against allowing the bill to move to the floor for debate, effectively killing it. The June 30 deadline to close on contracts entered into before May 1 and still qualify for the homebuyer tax credit remains in force.

New Christiansburg Listing - Updated Bungalow

by Desi Sowers

Fewer Homebuyers Are Willing to Purchase Foreclosures

by Desi Sowers

Fewer Homebuyers Are Willing to Purchase Foreclosures

U.S. homebuyers are less likely to purchase a foreclosed property today than they were a year ago, according to a new survey conducted by Trulia and RealtyTrac. Some 45 percent of U.S. homebuyers say they are at least somewhat likely to purchase a foreclosure today compared with 55 percent who said the same a year ago.

Only 1 percent of homeowners with a mortgage say walking away from their home would be their first option if they are unable to pay their mortgage, while 59 percent say they would not consider walking away no matter how much their mortgage was underwater. More than two-thirds of homeowners (69 percent) say modifying their loan terms is their first choice if they aren’t able to pay their mortgage.

The survey also finds that fewer homeowners have a negative view toward foreclosure properties this year (78 percent) compared to last year (85 percent). Homeowners who believe there are negative aspects to purchasing a foreclosed home say they are most concerned that there will be hidden costs (68 percent), that the process is risky (49 percent) and that the home could lose value (35 percent).


Tue, May 25, 2010

New Listing - Blacksburg Condo; Available NOW!

by Desi Sowers

Blacksburg Condo - Like New!!

by Desi Sowers

Monthly Real Estate Update

by Desi Sowers

Monthly Real Estate Update

Hhhmmmmmmm............ I wonder............

by Desi Sowers

Just read this very interesting article in the Roanoke Times on-line.

Please let me know if anyone has thoughts on what/who this might be!! 

A professional home inspection can not only provide a great education about the home’s systems, but also be a crucial tool in negotiating the most equitable price on the home, according to HouseMaster, one of the first and largest home inspection franchisors in North America.

“Our experience and research shows that approximately 40% of resale homes have at least one defect that can cost a home buyer a minimum of $500 to repair,” said Kathleen Kuhn, President of HouseMaster.“A home inspection by a professional and qualified home inspector is an excellent tool to encourage home sellers to make repairs or make further price adjustments as a result of conditions noted in the inspection report.”

According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), in 2009, a record 47% of homes sold were purchased by first-time buyers. Tax credit incentives from the federal government of up to $8,000 and historically low mortgage rates continue to attract first-time buyers to the market. A professional home inspection not only educates buyers on the condition of the home but can minimize costly surprises down the road. HouseMaster provides the following tips to ensure that first-time buyers make an educated decision when purchasing a home and get the best price possible.

1. Inspect the Inspector. Only hire a home inspector with an excellent reputation and credentials. Ask how long the company has been in business, ask about specific formal training and ongoing education the inspector has and verify the inspector carries professional liability insurance also known as “Errors & Omissions” (E&O). If the company doesn’t carry this insurance, it could indicate a poor track record or lack of experience.

2. Ask for a sample of a report. The credentials of the inspection company and the quality of the final inspection report will be important. A poorly prepared report without pictures or clear, concise details addressing all the various systems and accessible elements of the home is less likely to be taken seriously by a home seller.

3. Inspect ancillary systems. It’s hard for first-time home buyers to know what they need, so be sure to ask what additional services the company offers. If the home you are considering has a septic system for example, a professional home inspection company may offer septic system inspections or can coordinate that service for you. Generally, the company will offer you a multiple services discount as well as the added convenience of only having to attend one inspection appointment. Other common services offered by home inspectors are termite inspections, mold screening, water testing and radon testing.

4. Go along on the inspection. Ask the inspection company if they encourage buyers to tag along on the inspection. If the inspector discourages you from going along and asking questions, find another inspector. A home inspection is not simply a laundry list of what is wrong with the home. In addition to documenting issues and needed repairs that may exist, a professional home inspector will also show the new buyer how to operate the various systems in the home and provide tips on improving energy efficiency and maintaining the home in general. And being present during the inspection will make the final written report that much more meaningful.

RISMEDIA, April 21, 2010

Real Estate Outlook: Faster Recovery?

by Desi Sowers

It's been a long time since we've seen the Wall Street Journal run a front-page article suggesting that the national economy appears to be rebounding faster than most analysts forecast. But that happened last week.

And over the past couple of years, we haven't seen retail sales -- a key barometer of consumer confidence -- jump by almost two percent in a single month. But we saw that last week as well.

And then there's real estate: The latest Federal Reserve "beige book" on economic conditions nationwide, issued last week, said something we haven't heard in a long, long time. Housing activity is up in 11 of the 12 bank districts.

All of this, of course, sounds like promising news for home sales in the coming months. In fact, Freddie Mac's economists see total sales this year at least 10 percent higher than last year, even with the possibility of higher mortgage interest rates.

But there are complications in the mix: The Fed's "beige book" report essentially said, yes, housing is on an upward path at the moment, but what happens to sales after the home purchase tax credits expire mid-year?

Will expansion elsewhere in the economy be able to sustain sales and prices?

Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, has similar concerns. In his latest commentary, Yun says steadily rising employment will be essential to keeping housing positive once the credits disappear.

The employment report for March was encouraging: 162,000 net new jobs, Yun noted, even in hard hit sectors like manufacturing. Yun's forecast model projects one million additional new jobs this year, plus another two million next year.

But even that sort of rebound in employment won't be enough to replace the 8.2 million jobs lost in the recession years. So the unemployment challenge is likely to be with us for a few years -- at best.

Meanwhile, though foreclosures remain troublingly high, the rate of delinquencies on existing mortgages may have actually peaked and could be headed downward. Equifax and Moody's Economy.com report that the percentage of home loans thirty days late dropped in the first quarter - the first decline in four years.

And in major housing markets that took hard hits during the bust, signs of recovery continue to multiply. For example, in the six counties of Southern California, home sales were up 33 percent in March over February, and were up five percent over 2009 levels, according to MDA Data Quick.

Even median prices were on the rise -- by 14 percent over year-earlier levels.

Written by  Kenneth R. Harney
April 19, 2010

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