Winter Sales Promotion for Foreclosed Homes

Freddie Mac just launched a promo that is actually pretty sweet.  If you are thinking of snatching up a foreclosure for a steal, the deal just got that much sweeter.

Click to visit Freddie Mac website

Check out the details, and remember- hiring a Buyer’s agent is totally free to you.  It’s crazy, I know.  I help my clients locate houses that match their criteria through a fancy pants Realtor search engine, help you navigate through all the different kinds of financing available, home inspections, contract writing, negotiation, etc.  Contact me.  Even if you’re just flirting with the idea of home buying and you just have a few questions, I’m here to help.

 

The details:

Freddie Mac First Look Initiative

Freddie Mac will offer homebuyers and select non-profits an exclusive opportunity to purchase HomeSteps homes prior to competition from investors through the Freddie Mac First Look Initiative. This on-going initiative offers owner occupant homebuyers the ability to purchase HomeSteps homes during their initial 15 days of listing (30 days in Nevada), without competition from investors. The purchaser does not need to be a first time homebuyer to be eligible provided, however, that they are buying the home as their primary or secondary residence.

HomeSteps SmartBuySM

HomeSteps SmartBuy is our exciting home purchase program that offers:

We want you to feel confident about your decision to buy from us, and have the peace of mind you expect and deserve from your new home.

Buying a HomeSteps® home is truly a smart buy!

*Certain restrictions, limitations, terms and conditions apply. SeeHomeSteps SmartBuy Terms and Conditions for further details.

Homebuyer Incentives**

  • Up to 3.0% buyer’s closing cost

**HomeSteps homebuyer incentives are available to owner-occupants purchasers only.

 


Jay McGee used to live in Southeast Asia, doing language research and literacy development. Now he’s a Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty. He gives a microloan to somebody in a developing country every time someone in Richmond buys or sells their home with him.  Learn why here.
Contact: jaymcgee.kw@gmail.com

3 Things You Didn’t (really) Know About the Richmond Market

We all know that the economy sort of… you know… stinks right now.  We all know that the housing market was one of the key triggers as well as the biggest victim of that economic decline.  For the first time in recent history, home owners around the country have lost significant equity in their homes.

But if you’re thinking of buying or selling, you need to know more than just an understanding of the concept that “the housing market crashed.”

Here’s what you know… but didn’t really know about the Richmond Market…

 

1- Prices are Down.

Median House Price in Richmond Metro

Lucky Dog:  The guy who sold his house in June of 2008.  Back then, the average home in Richmond fetched a price of $233,000

Here's what that feels like

Poor Schmuck:  The guy who bought his house in June of 2008, and then sold it in February of this year, when the average Richmond home price dipped to $153,000

The Difference:  A decline of 34%… or $80,000

 

 

 

 

2- Ask and Ye Shall Receive… Less

Back in October of 2007, when you listed your home at $200,000 you ended up selling it for $195,000… or 98% of your list price.

Today when you list your home at $200,000 you will probably end up selling it for $188,000… or 94% of your list price.  That’s a difference of $8,000

3- What it means

If you are buying, you are going to find some amazing deals and buy a lot more house than you would have been able to 5 years ago.  If you are in that boat, here’s the other great thing… hiring a Buyer’s Representative is FREE to you.  Contact me if you’d like to learn what I do for Buyer clients.  Here’s a snapshot.

If you are selling, it means you might not get the price you would like when you sell your home.  Here are the Top 10 Value Boosting Projects that you can do for your Richmond home.  You are also going to need a Realtor who works harder and is better than the rest.  You happen to be reading his blog.

Do you have any questions about the Richmond market?  Leave a comment!

 


Jay McGee used to live in Southeast Asia, doing language research and literacy development. Now he’s a Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty. He gives a microloan to somebody in a developing country every time someone in Richmond buys or sells their home with him.  Learn why here.
Contact: jaymcgee.kw@gmail.com

Solutions: Buying a Home with a Minimal Down Payment (Part 2)

If you’re a Virginia resident who wants to buy a home but you don’t have money saved up for a down payment and closing costs, there is a good possibility that you’re not out of the game yet.  The VHDA (Virginia Housing Development Authority) exists “to help put quality housing within the reach of every Virginian.”

The VHDA finances the FHA Plus Loan.  The FHA Plus is designed for home buyers who don’t have sufficient savings for a down payment and closing costs.  You do have to have some savings: 1% of the sales price of the home.  So if you’re looking to buy a $200,000 home, you’ll need to pony up $2,000.  That’s a lot less than the 20% conventional down payment.

Here are a few of the basics, straight from the VHDA website:

Program Details

  • Borrower(s) must have cash available equal to a minimum of 1% of the sales price.
  • The 30-year fixed interest rate for the first and second (both VHDA-financed) mortgage is slightly higher than our standard fixed rate programs.
  • FHA’s standard qualifying guidelines apply (Minimum 620 credit score).
  • Borrowers must complete a VHDA-approved Homeownership Education class.
2 Facts You Might Not Know

1.Part of my job as a Buyer’s Agent is to help home buyers navigate through the confusion of figuring out financing solutions to buying a home.  Have a question about the FHA Plus loan or financing in general?  Give me a call or send me an email.
2. If you’re a Buyer, it doesn’t cost you a thing to hire me as your Buyer’s Agent.  The Seller pays the commission for both the Seller’s Agent and the Buyer’s Agent when a house is sold.  (Yes, Real Estate is sort of confusing that way… but if you’re a buyer, that’s great news for you!)

 
 

Jay McGee used to live in Southeast Asia, doing language research and literacy development. Now he’s a Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty. He gives a microloan to somebody in a developing country every time someone in Richmond buys or sells their home with him.
Contact: jaymcgee.kw@gmail.com

Solutions: Buying a Home with a Minimal Down Payment (Part 1)

It’s time to indulge your inner nerd and talk numbers.  Why?  Because knowing how to play the numbers can easily put a couple hundred bucks back in your pocket every month.

These days, many people are finding that their monthly payments can be several hundred dollars less per month when buying as compared to renting.  The reason- the huge drop in sale prices over the last few years, coupled with record-low interest rates.

Click on the chart below to enter your own Buying V Renting scenario.  The scenario I entered would be typical for a lot of renters in the Richmond area.  I though the results were fascinating.  On your third year of home ownership vs renting, you save over $2,000.  On the fifth year, $5,100.  On the tenth year, $9,200, and so on.

Buying V Renting graph from New York Times

Why Interest is Interesting
People who make payments on their 30 year fixed mortgage will notice something… and it might just keep you up at night with agitation and disbelief: the bulk of your monthly mortgage payment is actually just interest.  Some of your payment is going towards paying down the principal on your home and building your equity.  But most of it is interest.  Yikes.

I’ll use my own home mortgage as an example: I bought a house in 2007 when prevailing interest rates were at 6.8%.  A $200,000 mortgage at a 6.8% interest rate would give you a monthly payment of around $1,512.  Today, with interest rates around 4.5%, that same $200,000 mortgage will cost around $1,221.  Not to mention the fact that $200,000 can buy you a lot more house today than it did in ’07.

$200,000 at 6.8% = $1,512 monthly payment
$200,000 at 4.5% = $1,221 monthly payment
(all amounts are only estimates)

That means that the house you are renting for $1,300 per month, you might be able to own for lower monthly mortgage payments. Adios, landlord.  Adios, pet deposit.

So what can you do if already know that it makes more financial sense for you to buy rather than rent… but you don’t have enough savings for a down payment?

If you are a Virginia Resident, there might be a solution for you…

 

Stop by again tomorrow to learn more about the FHA Plus loan

Okay.  Tell that nerd to scram and watch some ridiculous real life Real Estate listings

 

Jay McGee used to live in Southeast Asia, doing language research and literacy development. Now he’s a Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty. He gives a microloan to somebody in a developing country every time someone in Richmond buys or sells their home with him.
Contact: jaymcgee.kw@gmail.com


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