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How to Use Your Equity to Your Advantage

Once you have purchased a home and are making monthly payments, you are in the process of building equity. The opportunity to use the equity you have built up in your home is one of the benefits of homeownership.  The equity you have built up can be used for many purposes on your advantage. Many people will use this equity to draw out cash by refinancing their house; the cash may be use to finance other major purchases such as second mortgage, making major improvement to your property or to fund their children educational expenses.  If you are in bad debt situation, your equity can be the hero in saving you from bankruptcy. You can pledge your equity to apply for a home equity loan which will allow you to borrow a relatively large amount of money to consolidate your debts. As compare to other personal or unsecured loan, a home equity loan is easier to get approve even you are in a bad debts situation; lenders may be more liberal because they view home equity loan as relatively safe. You can't disappear with your house or hide it if you default on your loan, so the lender has a good chance of collecting the collateral.  Besides using your equity for bad debt consolidation, you may use it for other high-interest rates debt consolidation. One of the advantages of home equity loans are they typically have lower interest. And you could you this advantage to consolidate all your high-interest monthly payments into a single loan which had a considerably lower interest rate.  Typically you are allowed to refinance up to 75%, (sometimes 80%), of the value of the property on conforming loans whereas on jumbo loans you are limited to 70% of the property's value. For example, if your home is now valued at $150,000 and your loan balance is $70,000, you might be able to get a new $150,000 x 75% = 112,500 mortgage. That would allow you to repay the existing $70,000 balance and use the $42,500 for your financial needs.  Another possibility to use the equity to your advantage is home equity lines. Many lenders offers home equity lines for homeowners and allow them to draw cash advances with their credit card or write checks up to certain credit limit.  Before using a home equity loan or home equity credit line for any purpose, you should be aware of the pitfalls of these loans. The main thing is that you can lose your home if you fail to meet the payment schedule required by the loan. Therefore you need to consider it carefully before do a cash-out with your equity.

DIY Fix to a Rattling Window

With the windy Spring days, you might be noticing your windows rattling a little more than usual.  Here is a quick fix to that issue.  The sash lock's cam mechanism is misaligned or broken. To suck a double-hung's sashes together and eliminate rattling—and drafts—remove the center latch and install two new ones instead. Arrange them so that the latches are fully engaged when the cam is turned about halfway.      

DIY Fix to a Rattling Window

With the windy Spring days, you might be noticing your windows rattling a little more than usual.  Here is a quick fix to that issue.  The sash lock's cam mechanism is misaligned or broken. To suck a double-hung's sashes together and eliminate rattling—and drafts—remove the center latch and install two new ones instead. Arrange them so that the latches are fully engaged when the cam is turned about halfway.

0 Butterfly Lane Lot 4, Amherst, VA

Come Build Your Custom Home!! 0 Butterfly Lane Lot 4  Amherst, VA 24521   💰50,000 😀🏡🏡. 5.8 acres   Beautiful builder ready lot with cleared building site. Mature hardwoods, soil work has been done , nice shed on property.  Horses, chickens and bees welcome!   TEXT 309535  to (434) 363-3899 for an AUTOMATIC text message sent to your phone with more property details and images. 

How to Buy a Big House with a Small Price

If you are considering buying a house within the next two or three years but are waiting until you can afford the house of your dreams, you may want to reconsider. With housing prices going up as much as 10% per year in some areas, the longer you wait, the farther that perfect house can move out of your reach. Along with the hike in house prices, interest rates are starting to creep up as well. This is even more of an incentive to buy a house now, rather than later. How can you get a big house for a small-house price? The following tips will reveal the secrets to getting a great deal on your dream house. 1. Get to know house values. Before you get started, look at the areas in which you want to purchase a house. Monitor the prices of houses in that area until you are fairly comfortable with those values. Your goal is to know the value of homes so well that a great deal will be obvious to you. 2. Make low offers. Start by making offers that are as low as 65 % to 70 % of the asking price. Rather than making only one offer at a time, make 5  or 10 offers each week. Make sure you write "To be deposited only upon acceptance of this offer" on your earnest deposit check. 3. Expect most of your offers to be rejected. You'll know you are on the right path when your real estate agent complains that your offers are too low. 4. Wait for a great deal. If a seller accepts your offer, or counters with an offer at 80 % or less of the home's value, you've probably found a great deal. You will be able to live in a bigger house than other buyers who didn't take the extra time to find a seller willing to sell for less. This strategy will test the patience of both you and your real estate agent. You will be tempted to think that no one will ever accept one of your low offers. However, when a good offer finally comes along, the extra space you get to enjoy in your new house will make it all worthwhile.

978 Leander Drive, Forest, VA

😍😍🏡🏡It Doesn't Get More Gorgeous than This Custom Home! ⭕978 Leander Drive 
Forest, VA 24551 🛏️🛏️🛏️🛏️🛏️5 bedrooms 
🛀🛀🛀🛀🛀5 bathrooms 
🏡4700+ sq ft  💰639,900 ☑️Stamped concrete walkways adjoin a 19' brick rocking chair front porch. 
☑️Formal Dining room with custom moldings opens to a Large open concept great room with pristine hardwoods, cozy fireplace & an abundance of natural light. 
☑️Gourmet kitchen with quartz counter tops, custom cabinetry, tiled backsplash, pantry, gas stove & more! 
☑️Main level Master Suite retreat w/ coffered ceiling, walk in closet, & spa-like ensuite; Walk-in tiled shower, deep soaking tub, & dual sink vanity. 
☑️4th bedroom boasts vaulted ceilings.
☑️Oversized bedrooms and recreation room in the upper level, perfect for a growing family. 
☑️Located in the coveted Farmington Community! TEXT 310324  to (434) 363-3899 for an AUTOMATIC text message sent to your phone with more property details and images. 

1163 Grand Oaks Dr, Forest, VA

🏡🏡👇👇👇Privacy & elegance in the sought after community of Grand Oaks!  🏡1163 Grand Oaks Drive, Forest, VA   🛏️🛏️🛏️🛏️4 Bedrooms
🛀🛀🛀3 Bathrooms 💰424,900 Enjoy the quality of this beautiful home built by award winning builder, Deitz Lilly! 
✔️Nestled In the heart of a partially wooded lot on a quaint cul-de-sac, this all brick home features a rocking chair porch w/ tons of privacy. 
✔️This well thought out floorplan has a main level den/office with french doors for added privacy. 
✔️The formal dining room was stenciled by a local artist for added elegance.
✔️The main floor master ensuite offers an oversized master & bath!
✔️Custom designed fixtures and 3/4 hardwood adorn the grand stair case and main living areas. 
✔️In the kitchen, enjoy the eat-In Bar, Cherry Cabinetry, Granite Countertops & Stainless Steel Appliances. 
✔️The great room houses a cathedral ceiling, tons of windows & fireplace.
✔️Just off the kitchen enter into the screened porch with access to a large maintenance free deck TEXT 310404  to (434) 363-3899 for an AUTOMATIC text message sent to your phone with more property details and images.   

0 Smartview Lane LOT 4, Forest, VA

Beautiful Waterfront Property!! 🔵    0 Smartview Lane LOT 4, Forest, VA 💰99,900 🖼️1.30 acres ☑️Waterfront lot located in the community of Gilfield Village. ☑️County Water, Underground Utilities and Septic! 
☑️This property is privately located on a tranquil cul-de-sac lot with a level to gently sloped lot perfect for a crawl space or basement home. 
☑️The lot boasts a large pond, stocked with fish in the spring/summertime, with dock potential. 
☑️Located in the Forest School District. 📞📞  TEXT 306149  to (434) 363-3899 for an AUTOMATIC text message sent to your phone with more property details and images. 

115 Beverly Hills Circle, Lynchburg, VA

🏡🏡👇👇Newly Remodeled Brick Ranch in a Fabulous Neighborhood!!   🔵115 Beverly Hills Circle, Lynchburg, VA 24502   $174,900 🛏️🛏️🛏️3 bedroom 🛀1 bathroom   ✔️This home features a recently new roof, central air, and a new hot water heater ✔️Entire house has been remodeled with ceramic tile and hardwood flooring ✔️Featuring a brand new sunroom, huge maintenance free deck overlooking yard perfect for entertaining! ✔️Remodeled kitchen opens to living room ✔️The bathroom has new tile shower, seamless glass shower doors, vanity and tile flooring. ✔️Crown molding, new lighting, paint throughout, large portion of plumbing and electrical has been upgraded and more.   TEXT 309746  to (434) 363-3899 for an AUTOMATIC text message sent to your phone with more property details and images. 

1227 Ty Bluff Road, Forest, VA 24551

🏡🏡😍😍NEW LOWERED PRICE!!! 👇👇👇You've Got to See These Majestic Views!   ⭕1227 Ty Bluff Road, Forest, VA 24551  💰394,900   🏡🏡🏡🏡4 Bedrooms 🛀🛀🛀🛀🛀5 Bathrooms : 4 Full : 1 Half   ✅Beautiful brick home in the Ivy Trace Community ✅Gorgeous mountain views from the front porch and more views from Brand NEW screened back room and beautiful grilling deck.  ✅Spacious 1.16 acre lot across from the Ivy Hill Golf Course.  ✅Oversized formal dining room with triple windows, tray ceiling & wide chair rails.  ✅Kitchen boasts Cherry cabinets plus island & breakfast area ✅Open concept to great room w/ fireplace & hardwood floors though out the main level.  ✅The terrace level features a wet bar, full bath and 3 additional spacious rooms plus plenty of storage.  ✅Spacious master suite has an additional huge walk up attic for additional storage as well as whirlpool tub, double vanity & HUGE walk in closet in the master bath.    TEXT 307118  to (434) 363-3899 for an AUTOMATIC text message sent to your phone with more property details and images.       

Things to Remember Before Buying a Home

Are you going through all those anxiety pangs that one normally gets while mulling over the decision of buying a home? Homebuyers are an anxious lot, eager for useful real estate information. It pays to get yourself acquainted with the steps involved in the purchase of a home.  Here is a list of important things to know before buying a home.  1.    The first step is to find out how much you can afford or qualify for. Check your credit report to know your credit worthiness. Clear up problems if any before going to a lender. A good credit rating will result in you receiving lower interest rates. 2.    Get pre-approved for a mortgage from a mortgage broker or lender, with a commitment to fund your mortgage in writing. Look out for frequent payment options and prepayment options, which would help knock off some years from your mortgage. And finally, settle for comfortable monthly payments. Once pre-approved for a loan, you will know your price range to begin shopping for real estate. 3.    You should buy the real estate that is right for you. Make a wish list of all the specifications you want in your home. Prioritize them based on your wants and needs. Then mark out those aspects that you are willing to compromise on, in case you need to. 4.    Get a good, reputable Real Estate Agent to assist you in locating a property in a desirable location. Your Real Estate Agent will know where to help you look for properties, while keeping your preferences and price range in mind.  5.    Once your agent provides you with a list of properties that are affordable, you can drive by to check the neighborhood. Look for a house in a location that has good potential for future appreciation. Consider factors like safety, school districts, freeway access, recreational options, work commute time, shopping facilities etc.  6.    Check out a sufficient amount of real estate until you develop a sense of comparative value of each neighborhood. Your real estate agent can help you with the valuation.Visiting the localities at different points in time during the day is ideal. This will help narrow down the list. You might want to check during the morning commute, or after dark to verify that the neighborhood suits you.  7.    When you have found a house of your choice, compare its price with other houses in the area. Get your real estate agent to assess the value of the home.If all looks good, write an offer! 8.    Lastly, consult your real estate agent to be sure that you obtain any professional inspections necessary to answer any questions you may have about the property.Some concerns may include: the condition of the roof, foundation, walls, plumbing, electrical, windows, etc.Other concerns may be: Is the property in a flood zone, or wildfire area.Is the property subject to Mello-Roos? Are there CC& Rs? Are there any easements on the property, etc. Your professional Real Estate Agent will assist you in answering these and other questions you may have prior to closing escrow on a property.

How to Properly "Declutter" You House for Selling

Your real estate agent has come to your house to assess what needs to be done to sell it the quickest.  The word, "declutter," continues to come up.  You assure your agent that you are a very neat person and that everything will be clean when the potential buyers come to view it.  Many sellers encounter the same situation each day.  What agents wish their clients would understand is that decluttering is more than just keeping the baseboards dust-free and the countertops wiped down.  Try some of the following tips and wow your real estate agent, and especially, your buyers. With pen, paper and clipboard in hand, tour the outside of your home, then the inside.  As much as possible, pretend that you don't own the house and even that you've never seen the place.  You will quickly see what your real estate agent meant by decluttering when you use this new perspective.  Write down anything which is the least bit offensive to the eye, including unruly hoses, toys in the front yard, a busy mantle above the fireplace and newspapers stacked up in the laundry room.  The list will seem longer the more times you go through the process.  However, the more you notice, the more prepared your home will be for eagle-eyed buyers. The biggest stumbling block for sellers preparing their home for the market is their lingering attachment to their house.  From repainting a room neutral, to taking family photos off the wall, sellers must accept that their time in that particular house is coming to an end.  To counteract this mental block, take your most personal items out of rooms first.  Get plenty of clear plastic tubs, or boxes to store your items.  Treat the decluttering process as if you are preparing a model home for viewing.  In order to sell your home, you have to give the buyers room to imagine their personal belongings.  Little forward-thinking daydreams about decorating your new abode should also counteract those strong attachments. A good round of decluttering will often leave you with a pile of boxes and bins to contend with.  Although stacking them up in a closet seems like a nice, out-of-the-way option, this may not be the best choice.  Consider that closet space is often one of the key selling points for a home.  Closets should look as impeccable as possible.  This will aid greatly in creating a spacious feeling.  If the closets are crowded and messy, the buyer may think that your home is just not big enough, even if it has the square footage they want. Your garage is the most acceptable place for storage in the mind of the buyers.  Of course, not everyone has this luxury.  If you can convince a family member, friend, or even a neighbor to let you store those boxes and crates, then take advantage of the opportunity.  However, if you really need or want your storage items in the house, then try to stack them up in the least conspicuous place you can find.  A playroom or basement can usually stand to have a few of these bins stashed in the corner.  Better yet, think about renting a temporary storage facility to house these things. Despite all your efforts, be prepared that your real estate agent might tell you that you still have too many belongings cluttering the house.  If this happens, just remember that they're on your side and that they're the expert.  Also, remember that a well-decluttered house is your quickest ticket to a "Sold!" sign.

Quick Fix for Curb Appeal

Feeling a bit drab every time you look at the front of your house but you're too tight on a budget to make big changes?  Nothing says “Welcome” to your home like a beautiful exterior. Since the front door tends to be the focal point of anyone that is looking at it, repainting or re-staining the door gives big bang for your buck.  If you have a little more leeway in your budget, consider replacing an old front door for a new welcoming style or type for anywhere between $600-$1000 for a "worth it" upgrade!

A Little Too Cold or a Little Too Hot?

Is your house just a little too cold in winter, or just a little too hot during the warm months?  Are you struggling with getting the "Ahh it's just right"? Well,  here’s a solution that can help fix this issue dramatically: Add insulation to your attic or crawl space. There are many different types of insulation but fiberglass and cellulose are the 2 most popular. There are also different ways insulation is installed.  This includes rolled insulation which is laid down on the attic floor, or blown-in insulation. Both of these types of insulation are effective.  Now once insulation is installed you can actually expect your house to be approximately 7-10 degrees warmer in the winter, and 7-10 degrees cooler in the summer.  This change is just from the attic insulation alone! Not only will you have the "Ahh it's just right" feeling with the comfort of your home, you can also expect to save a bunch more money per year on your heating and cooling bills! What a great bonus!

Don't Make These 5 Mistakes When Remodeling Your Bathroom

When remodeling your bathroom there are 5 key points you don't want to look over to make sure your bathroom is not only beautiful but functional too!  These are the  five common mistakes both rookie and seasoned flippers and homeowners make when renovating a bathroom. Mistake 1: Looking over functional layout Don't forget that just because you can fit it into the bathroom doesn’t mean it can function well within the space. For example, if you choose to have a shower door but you don't plan your layout so the door can fully open, it's not considered functional.  The same goes for cabinets and drawers.  Also, don't forget that a toilet paper holder should be within an arm's reach for a child or an outlet should be easily accessible when at the counter.  Mistake 2: Choosing the wrong materials  Bathrooms tend to have much more moisture than any other room in the house.  Bathroom surfaces also tend to get some of the harshest  chemical cleaning products on them.  Because of these factors the materials you use for you bathroom remodel must be able to withstand these conditions or your hard work will be damaged faster than you can blink. Go with materials that can stand up to harsh cleaners and are not highly susceptible to mold, warping or distortion. Avoid porous materials that will retain moisture and allow hidden mold to grow. Mistake 3: Forgetting about storage space Plan storage space according to how many people will use the bathroom.   Don't forget that if you don't want everyone to see the stuff you store in your bathroom (like extra towels, toilet paper or toiletries) then you'll want to make sure you have more than just floating shelves for storage.  Mistake 4: Neglecting proper ventilation Ventilation isn't glamorous but it's definitely crucial.  Improper ventilation can lead to mold, mildew, and other bigger problems. Having both natural ventilation (window for days with decent weather) and a ventilation fan (when it's too cold to open the window) is essential for a bathroom remodel.  Mistake 5: Not preparing in the beginning for lighting fixtures Different lighting styles can provide enough light in a bathroom or can sometimes create shadows on faces that can make it difficult to get ready for the day.  Sometimes showers changes can call for a light inside of the shower versus not needing one before. These are all reasons you'll want to have lighting fixtures planned at the beginning of the remodel, to avoid headaches at the end of your project. 

Have a Frustrating Wobbly Toilet Seat?

This is a very common problem.   Perhaps you tighten the nuts on your toilet seat bolts every few days, but they always seem to loosen up again. The solution is an inexpensive item called a toilet seat tightening kit. You can pick one up for under $10 from any big-box home improvement store. The kit comes with a special tool, which lets you install washers that keep the nuts and bolts secure. It takes about 15 minutes to do the job, and your problem will be solved for the foreseeable future!

919 Leander Drive, Forest, Virginia

🏡🏡💥Come See this Gorgeous & Luxurious New Construction!! ⭕919 Leander Drive, Forest, Virginia 24551   💰$499,900 🏡🏡🏡🏡🏡5 Bedrooms
🛀🛀🛀🛀4 Bathrooms : 3 full : 1 half  Acres 0.370
🏡3,147 sq ft ✅Stunning new construction with all brick exterior & decorative accents.
✅Hardwood flooring throughout main living area & expansive windows backing up to a private wooded yard
✅Kitchen features oversized island, gorgeous cabinetry, complimenting granite & stainless appliances including a gas cook top.
✅Features built in organized "mud room" with hooks, cabinets and cubby.
✅The formal dining space is customized with intricate moldings
✅Main level master offers spacious walk in closet, master bath with soaking tub & walk in tile shower.
✅Terrace level offers ample storage or expansion opportunities. TEXT 307897  to (434) 363-3899 for an AUTOMATIC text message sent to your phone with more property details and images. 

Timeless Herringbone Backsplash

Paired with fresh white cabinets and stainless steel details, the classic Herringbone pattern adds timeless character to any design and makes the space feels clean and contemporary with just the right amount of texture, dimension and personality.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber


How Much Is My House Worth?

Are you wondering "how much is my house worth?" I have two answers for you. First, if you don't really need to move, it is worth whatever you say it is. If you think, "I wouldn't sell this house for less than $300,000," then it is worth that much to you. If you need to sell it, though, what it is worth to you is irrelevant. Market value is the only relevant value once you are ready to sell. This is the value according to all the home buyers out there. They don't care what you spent renovating the house, or what you originally paid. Spend $50,000 adding a pool, and they may only pay $20,000 more for the home. Real estate is worth what the market says it is worth. How Much Is My House Worth - Part One To estimate the market value of your home, use "comparables." This is how appraisers do it. Find at least three similar homes nearby that have sold within the last six or maybe twelve months (these are your comparables). This information is in county records (sometimes online now), or ask a real estate agent with access to the multiple listing service. Get the sales prices, terms of sale, description of the property, and other information. Take your first comparable, write down the selling price, and review the description item by item. Add to the sales price of the comparable for each thing it doesn't have that your subject home has, and subtract for each thing it has that your subject home does have. This sounds confusing, but it will make sense once you try it a couple times.  For example, if your home has a second bathroom, and the comparable doesn't, add the value of the bathroom to the sales price of the comparable. If the comparable home has a blacktop driveway, and your's doesn't, take the value away. You'll have to estimate what these things are worth, or ask for professional help.
You are rectifying differences, to see what the comparable home WOULD have sold for if it was just like yours. If a comparable sold for $242,000, with one less bathroom than your home, and a bathroom is worth $15,000 in your area (ask a real estate agent for help with these figures), then you ADD $15,000 for the bathroom it doesn't have. Subtract, say $5,000, for the paved driveway it does have, that your home doesn't have. $242,000 plus $15,000, minus $5,000 gives you a comparable sales price of $252,000. Do this with  each comparable, then average the three comparable prices. If, for example, the three comparables now have adjusted sales prices of $252,000, $262,000, and $249,000, add the three figures and divide by three. The indicated value of your home is $254,300. This is about what it should sell for. How Much Is My House Worth - Part Two Appraisal is an inexact science. If you can only find houses sold over a year ago, you should probably estimate appreciation in the area, and add that. If one sold with seller financing, you have to adjust for how this affected the price. These complications make it tough to appraise your own home, so what if you need help? There are other ways to find out what your house is worth. You can pay for a professional appraisal. This way you will also have something to show to prospective buyers who doubt the value. Be sure to tell the appraiser about anything she might miss, like a newer roof, or specially imported tiles. What about online services that tell you what your house is worth? They don't have enough access to sold prices of homes around the country to have a program figure the value of your house. Instead, they usually just take your basic information, e-mail address, and phone number, and sell this "lead" to a real estate agent that will contact you. It is better to find a real estate agent on your own, and ask "How much is my house worth?" Find one who has sold homes in your area, and ask if she can do a "market analysis" of your house value. Normally this is free, with the agent hoping to impress you and get your business. Sometimes if the agent has particular experience in that neighborhood, they'll do a better job than an appraiser, and the price is right.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber


How to Choose a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent will guide you to - and through - the most important decision of your life. How do you know, for sure, that they will act in your best interests? How do you know if they will really work for you? Is he too busy for you? What of his personal integrity? How much effort will he expend for you?  You will want to feel very comfortable with the real estate agent that you choose, comfortable enough to be able to say 'no' to the bargain of the month and 'no' to the almost perfect house.  He must not be intimidating to you, yet a business-like attitude and assertiveness are qualities you will want in a professional acting for you. Often when you are choosing a business professional, the outcome is not so critical, but who wants to lose their dream property? Choosing a real estate agent falls into the same bracket as choosing a medical doctor or a lawyer. The interview and short listing process is really all about finding one that you feel comfortable with. Real estate agents usually have a 'presentation'. This is usually a very business-like procedure and if they are having an off day, the presentation may click in automatically. However, you will need to get past the 'rehearsed' person and get to know the real one. Most real estate agents will have integrity, they have their reputations to think about, but you need to feel that you also have one that understands you and your wants. Some real estate agents have amazing sales records, so ask about sales history. Ask if he would mind giving you some recent sales to choose references from. Gather up at least half a dozen and then choose your own references to phone. Before you phone, ask the real estate agent a few questions.  For instance: How long was each house on the market? How many were reduced and why? How many times and by how much? Some other questions could be: Will there be a marketing plan drawn up for the sale of your house? Will it be carried out? What guarantees do you have? To see if the agent is keen and enthusiastic, ask him if he has taken any extra real estate courses.  See if you find his voice or tone very monotone; if so, do you find it relaxing, or would you prefer a lively voice generating a more energetic feeling? Finally you must try and gauge the quality of his negotiating skills. Ask about commissions; in a house sale it will be necessary for you both to be able to discuss money amicably. Observe the way the real estate agent explains things when you try and negotiate a lower rate. If he can convince you that his fee is fair and that he will have to work hard to earn it, then he can convince others to listen to his viewpoint when he is working for you! All this discussion will give you enough time and a good basis on which to judge the personality of the real estate agent. Then the bottom line is that you have to pick someone that you feel you can trust.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber


How to Avoid Buyer's Remorse

Buying a property can throw your emotions all over the place. First, you are ecstatic when the seller agrees to your offer. Soon thereafter, you start worrying about the price, potential problems and the commitment you have made to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars over the next 10, 15 or 30 years. It can be a monstrous rollercoaster for your emotions. You need not have buyer's remorse.  The first issue giving rise to remorse is almost always the purchase price. If it makes you feel any better, the seller almost always thinks they should have asked for more. In truth, the agreed upon price is almost always pretty fair if you obtain a mortgage loan. The lender is not going to give you a loan well in excess of the value of the home, so you can rest assured you probably got a fair price. Yes, you may have paid $10,000 too much, but it is a relatively insignificant amount given the value of the property over time.  The second area of remorse is the payment obligation. Buying a home sounds great until you realize payments of $1,500 or $2,000 are due each month. What if you lose your job? What if someone gets sick? What if, what if, what if.  Stop worrying. Life is full of risks and buying a home is a relatively minor one compared to other decisions we have to make. If you default on a mortgage, so what? Yes it is bad, but they are not going to put you in jail. Most successful business people fall on their faces five or ten times before hitting it big. In a worse case scenario, you can do the same.  Remorse can be an all encompassing thing. If you let it take hold of your emotions, you are going to suffer for no reason whatsoever. Remember, real estate is an excellent long term investment. If you keep the property in decent shape and hold on to the property for five or ten years, you will inevitably come out ahead.  Stop stressing out and enjoy your new home!

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber


Getting Your Home Ready for the Inspection

Many times I go to do a home to complete an inspection for a potential buyer, only to find the home not ready for an inspection. The home not being prepared then makes the buyer suspicious that there are areas that the inspector could not access causing them to back out of the deal. Completing a few routine maintenance items and having the home prepared for the inspection will avoid those long lists of misc. defects on a home inspection report that can scare a potential buyer. Here are some tips to get your home ready for a home inspection. 1.    Make sure the electric is on in the home and to all circuits. A home inspector will not flip breakers on or off during an inspection.
2.    Make sure the gas or fuel is on to all the appliances and that all pilot lights are lit. Inspectors will not light pilot lights or turn on valves.
3.    Make sure water is on and functional to all fixtures. Inspectors will not turn any valves to get water to any fixture.
4.    If there are any light bulbs burned out, replace them.
5.    Clear out stored items under the sinks.
6.    If the attic access is located in a closet or other area where your personal effects are in the way, remove all of your personal items from under the access hole and remove any shelving that may be in the way of getting a ladder to the attic. Inspectors will not move any personal items or shelving to access an attic.
7.    Grab a screwdriver and check all doors and windows for loose hardware, and make sure they all open/close properly.
8.    Clean off the roof and/or gutters from debris, etc.
9.    Check for any minor leaks under sinks or drains under the floor in the basement, etc., and have them repaired prior to the inspection.
10.    Have your heating and A/C equipment serviced and have record of the last servicing available for proof. Having the professional guidance of an experienced real estate agent can help get these things in order.  Taking care of these items will not only reduce the laundry list of defects found on a home inspection report, but it will also help secure the deal to sell your home.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber


Getting Ready to Sell

Sometimes when selling your home it is necessary to make a few improvements to realize the value that you want or to gain the attention that is necessary to sell a home on today's real estate market. If you really want to get top-dollar for your home, you should really make sure that your home is in pristine shape, everything works as it should and the design elements of the home create a unified theme. For instance: avocado green appliances probably don't go to well with a white theme minimalist kitchen. In top-dollar homes, unity is key.  If you take some time and look at your home as a product, which is necessary; think about what it offers to a consumer. There are some definite things that can add value to your home with just a bit of time and effort.  Paint - A new coat of paint will never hurt your home's chances of selling faster. This applies to both the interior and the exterior. Try to use neutral colors as a wild color scheme can estrange certain buyers and you want your home to appeal to as many people as possible. Landscaping - Landscaping has a huge effect on the visual impact of a home. The home's frontage is the first thing that potential buyers see when viewing your property. A nicely landscaped yard with well-kept gardens and a neatly trimmed lawn are great selling points for a home. Cleanliness - This is one of the singly most important things when selling any property. Nobody wants to buy a home that is in disarray. Homes with garbage and junk cluttering up the yard simply do not appeal to most buyers. This is also true for the garage. This is an area that tends to accumulate a huge amount of clutter and stuff collected over the years. Take the time to clean out the garage ahead of time. It will only save you the trouble of having to do it before the move. These are great tips on where to start but having the guidance of an experienced real estate agent will make the difference on getting your home ready for the market!

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber


Home Buying : What Can You Afford?

Okay, you've decided to buy a home and are trying to figure out what you can afford. Before you go home buying, you need to carefully consider what you can afford as far as a mortgage payment. Mortgage Payments The first step you should take in determining what you can afford is to talk to a mortgage lender. In fact, the best step you can take is to go through the loan process to the extent required to get a pre-qualification letter. A pre-qualification letter tells you and a seller how big of a home loan the lender will give you. So, once you have the loan in hand, that must be the amount you can afford? The answer is maybe or maybe not. The prequalification letter is based on a number of factors such as your earnings and credit. It is not based on a picture of your life, which can lead to problems. Other Expenses There is nothing worse than buying a home and straining to make the monthly mortgage payments. This situation occurs when a homebuyer relies solely on the pre-qualification letter or their own wishful thinking. You may have purchased your dream home, but donít let the payments be a nightmare. In determining how much you can afford to expend on a home purchase, you must consider your overall financial situation. Although you may be in a decent financial situation at the moment, do you have future expenses that will put pressure on your finances? Such situations might include: 1. Planning to have kids in the next year or so? 2. Are your current children going to college soon? 3. If you own a business, is the financial outlook stable? 4. If you work for a company, are you reasonably sure the company is headed in the right direction? 5. Do you have any concerns regarding the dreaded downsizing? 6. If you are the sole bread winner, what would happen if you were unable to work for a few months because of health issues? These general questions are intended to wake you up to the possibility of over extending yourself on a mortgage. Every situation is different, so make sure you take a careful look at your life to make sure you are committing to a loan you can afford now and in the future.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

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