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If you’re ready for home ownership the following tips will help you decide if you’re ready to move forward.

1. Take the time to research the selling prices of the type of home you are considering. Use the “Area Listings” search on my website or give me a call and I’ll provide you with all the information you’ll need to make an informed decision.

2. Decide what you can afford. You can use my mortgage calculator to get an estimate of what your payment will be.

3. Get rough estimate of what you are going to pay in insurance by selecting a property in the community where you would like to live and call to a local insurance representative for an estimate. You will not be required to get the insurance, however you will have a good idea of what you’re payment would be if you buy a home in the area. Just keep in mind that the intricacies and exemptions of the local tax law could produce variances between what you’re currently paying and what you can anticipate paying as a new homeowner.

4. Find out what you’ll be expected to pay in closing costs. You don’t want to ignore the up front cost of deciding on your home. Closing costs will include the lender’s origination fees, the title and settlement fees, taxes as well as prepaid items like homeowners association fees and homeowners insurance

5. Take a really close look at your budget and then decide how a home will fit into it. Fannie Mae suggests that buyers avoid spending over 28% of their cash flow on housing costs. If you go over you run the risk of becoming house poor.

6. Hire a reputable real estate agents in your area about the current real estate climate. Take the time to interview each real estate agent until you find one you can communicate with, that knows the community you want to live in and is knowledgeable about all the ins and outs of home ownership.

7. Always take a look at the bigger picture. Home ownership has always been the American dreams but can be expensive and labor intensive. On the other hand it is a great investment and it is a buyers market. Just look at everything before you jump in. Keep in mind that if you’re buying a fixer upper, costs of plumbing issues and roof repairs can crop up and can cost a pretty penny.

Working with an experience Real Estate Agent will make the home buying process a stress free and enjoyable experience as they walk you through the process. They’ll be able to answer all your questions and help you find the perfect home for your budget.


November 17, 2011

                                           If Not Now…When!!!


Interest rates affect the outcomes anticipated by buyers and sellers alike each and every day. This chart represents that interest rate history for the last 30 years. When I became a full time Realtor in 1984, all of my colleagues who had been selling for years were ecstatic at the 13.5% interest rates. That was a huge improvement from rates above 18% that many of their clients had experienced.

In 1984 if you had $2000 to spend for your monthly principle and interest payment, you could afford a $174,000 loan amount at 13.5%. In 1994 that same payment would afford you a $263,000 loan amount. And today, that same payment would afford you a $406,000 loan amount.   

Timing is everything, and we have not experienced a better interest rate environment in the last 30 years. (please let me know if you would like to see a copy of the graph from the last 30 years) That, coupled with the decrease in home values in many areas, should really bolster your buying power.                                                

As a real estate agent active in your neighborhood for over 27 years, I can offer you the specialized knowledge and experience gained by working with properties like yours and people like you.

You can find answers to your real estate questions or search for any home on the market by any real estate firm in the greater Puget Sound Region at my web sites:     www.MichaelPeters.net / www.Lake-Forest-Park.com  / www.cooltownhomes.com      

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