5 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Professional

by Team Member 10. June 2014 06:51

by The KCM Crew on May 14, 2014

Whether you are buying or selling a home, you need an experienced Real Estate Professional to lead you toward your ultimate goal. In this world of instant gratification and Internet searches, many sellers think that they can For Sale by Owner or FSBO.

The 5 Reasons You NEED a Real Estate Professional in your corner haven’t changed, but rather have been strengthened in recent months due torising interest rates & home prices as the market recovers.

1. What do you do with all this paperwork?

Each state has different regulations regarding the contracts required for a successful sale, and these regulations are constantly changing. A true Real Estate Professional is an expert in their market and can guide you through the stacks of paperwork necessary to make your dream a reality.

2. Ok, so you found your dream house, now what?

According to the Orlando Regional REALTOR Association, there are over 230 possible actions that need to take place during every successful real estate transaction. Don’t you want someone who has been there before, who knows what these actions are to make sure that you acquire your dream?

3. Are you a good negotiator?

So maybe you’re not convinced that you need an agent to sell your home. However, after looking at the list of parties that you need to be prepared to negotiate with, you’ll realize the value in selecting a Real Estate Professional. From the buyer (who wants the best deal possible), to the home inspection companies, to the appraiser, there are at least 11 different people that you will have to be knowledgeable with and answer to, during the process.

4. What is the home you’re buying/selling really worth?

Not only is it important for your home to be priced correctly from the start, to attract the right buyers and shorten the time that it’s on the market, but you also need someone who is not emotionally connected to your home, to give you the truth as to your home’s value.

According to the National Association of REALTORS“the typical FSBO home sold for $184,000 compared to $230,000 among agent-assisted home sales.”

Get the most out of your transaction by hiring a professional.

5. Do you know what’s really going on in the market?

There is so much information out there on the news and the Internet about home sales, prices, mortgage rates; how do you know what’s going on specifically in your area? Who do you turn to, to tell you how to competitively price your home correctly at the beginning of the selling process? How do you know what to offer on your dream home without paying too much, or offending the seller with a low-ball offer?

“When getting help with money, whether it’s insurance, real estate or investments, you should always look for someone with the heart of a teacher, not the heart of a salesman.” – Dave Ramsey

Hiring an agent who has their finger on the pulse of the market will make your buying/selling experience an educated one. You need someone who is going to tell you the truth, not just what they think you want to hear.


SOURCE: http://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2014/05/14/5-reasons-to-hire-a-real-estate-professional-3/

Real estate experts are predicting this will be the strongest market in years. Are you ready to join in?

by Team Member 1. May 2014 13:52



Just like May flowers, every spring the housing market blossoms as buyers come out ready to purchase their dream house. This spring, we believe we are going to see the strongest purchasing market we have seen in a decade.

Why are we so bullish on the housing market this spring?

Here are a few reasons:


Contrary to many reports, this age demographic is READY, WILLING and ABLE to become homeowners. As a matter of fact, the latest National Association of Realtors’ gender study revealed that the Millennial generation has recently accounted for a greater percentage of all buyers than any other generation.


As prices have risen, so has the equity in many homes across American. Homeowners, having been shackled to their house because of low or negative equity for the last several years, are again free to make a move without worrying about bringing cash to a closing table in order to sell. We believe this new-found freedom will release a pent-up demand of sellers who want to move-up to the home they’ve always dreamed of or want to downsize their primary residence and also purchase a second home they can use for vacation, retirement or both.


As the economy improves, more and more Americans are regaining faith that their own personal finances are headed in a positive direction. With this new confidence, they want to take advantage of the opportunity that presents itself with real estate still undervalued in most parts of the country and mortgage rates being well below historic numbers.

SOURCE: http://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2014/04/17/real-estate-this-spring-will-be-different/

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General | Real Estate Future

Call us to help you find the right home. Its the American Dream! [INFOGRAPHIC]

by Team Member 7. March 2014 18:18

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What's on the Horizon for 2014

by Team Member 3. February 2014 12:45

By Pauline Millard

The past few years in real estate have been unpredictable. Between high foreclosures one year to low inventory in some major markets the next, it’s hard to tell where the market is going to go.

We turned to experts in the field and found a few constants that everyone can agree upon for 2014. A few might be a surprise. If you’re looking to buy a second home or buy a first one without it turning into a bidding war, 2014 may be your year.

1. Dodd-Frank lending changes

Gird your loins if you’re looking to get a mortgage in 2014. The lending changes in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which took effect on January 10th, are an effort to prevent future housing meltdowns, and they have some tight requirements for borrowers seeking what are now called “qualified mortgages.” QMs are designed to cut the odds that borrowers will default, which in the long run is better for both consumers and banks.

One of the biggest changes is that lenders will be taking a closer looking at living expenses as well as your debt-to-income ratio, to make sure a borrower can make payments, especially if the buyer is applying for an adjustable rate mortgage. According to the new rules, borrowers cannot have a debt to income ratio over 43%. Everything from car payments to student loans will factor into this number, which means you may end up qualifying for a smaller loan than you expected.

There will also be fewer interest-only loans available, and it will be more difficult to find a loan that will last longer than 30 years. Paperwork will be key, as lenders will be asking for more of it.

2. Interest rates are most likely going up

No matter who you talk to, most experts agree that mortgage rates are going to go up, as they already have not just in the past year but in the past three months.

New Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen is expected to continue buying blocks of mortgage-backed securities, as her predecessor Ben Bernanke did, in an effort to keep mortgage rates low. The Fed, however, has considered tapering its bond-buying activity as the economy improves, which could lead to a slight increase in interest rates. Lock in your rate early, since rates are expected to surpass 5% this year.

3. Expect turnarounds in a lot of cities

When it puts together its Turnaround Towns Report, Realtor.com crunches a lot of numbers, including nationwide median list prices in a variety of cities as well as the number of days properties for sale stay on the market. Based on this data, they’re frequently seeing signs of strength in areas that were previously hit hard by foreclosures or very high inventory.

Detroit tops the list of cities that are seeing a resurgence, as does the Santa Barbara, California, and Reno, Nevada, areas. The list also frequently highlights alternatives—thanks largely to booming tech cities—if you’re priced out of a large metro area such as San Francisco or Boston.

In that instance, Leslie Piper, who is a consumer housing specialist with Realtor.com and an active realtor in the San Francisco Bay Area, suggests looking across the bay to Oakland, where real estate deals are a bit more accessible and will garner strong appreciation in the years to come. Other cities such as Austin, Denver and Nashville also have growing tech scenes and will be great buys in the long term.

4. Save your pennies, since home affordability will decline

Home affordability isn’t just an issue in major markets like New York City and San Francisco, which are seeing median sales prices in the mid-to-upper six figures. The National Association of Realtors’ Home Affordability Index, which compares home prices with income, found that home affordability dropped to a five-year low in 2013 as increases in home prices outpaced income growth.

Jed Kolko, Trulia’s chief economist and vice president of analytics, recently told CBS MoneyWatch that he thinks the declining rate of homeownership is also due to a large drop-off in first-time buyers.

Unemployment—and underemployment—among 25- to 34-year-olds is high. Kolko says that if this group is considered the future of home buying and they can’t save enough for a down payment, it will be a while before the housing sector fully recovers.

5. Don’t count on finding a foreclosure

Fewer homeowners are losing their homes as the economy improves—and as lending rules tighten—so there aren’t as many foreclosure deals and short sales to be found.

“We’re in the homestretch of getting through the foreclosure crisis,” Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac, which monitors the foreclosure market, told Kiplinger’s earlier this month. “But we won’t cross the finish line, with filings back to pre-crisis levels, until early 2015.”

READ MORE: http://www.forbes.com/sites/learnvest/2014/01/30/the-real-estate-crystal-ball-whats-on-the-horizon-for-2014/3/

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Working On Your Home This Year?

by Team Member 21. January 2014 09:38

Home Trends to Get Bolder in 2014


What will be “hot” in home interiors in the New Year? Plenty of designers are offering up their predictions, and here’s one outlook from Neil Kelly Co., a remodeling firm based in Portland, Ore.

Neil Kelly Co. offers up some of the following interior design trends for 2014:

Embellished showers: Showers are becoming more popular than tubs, and one feature growing in popularity is the curb-less shower.

U-sockets: These wall plugs have two built-in USB ports to power up devices, such as iPhones, digital cameras, tablets, and more. U-sockets also have a smart sensor that allows it to automatically shut off when the device is fully charged.

Stand-alone bath tubs: For those home owners who still desire a bathtub, the free-standing tub is growing in demand. It takes up less space and also serves as a structural element to dress up a room.

Seeing blue: Bright colors are “in,” particularly cobalt blue. Expect to see it more in the new year, even in the kitchen.

More modest decor: The industrial modern decor look was big in 2013, but Neil Kelly Co. designers expect that style to be more “relaxed, classic, and modest” in 2014. Stone, metal, and wood will continue to be popular, but the designers expect that rounded designs with earth shades and raw metal finishes to become more prevalent in interiors in 2014.

More multigenerational features: More multigenerational features will be incorporated homes to help better accommodate more people living under one roof, such as aging parents and boomerang kids. For example, features like wall mounted sinks for wheelchairs, walk-in bathtubs, and motion sensing faucets are expected to grow in demand.

Eco-friendly cabinets: Earth-friendly cabinets that are chemical-free and do not have added formaldehyde and non-toxic glues, binders, and finishes will likely increase in popularity.

SOURCE:  http://bit.ly/1cyKuBR#remodeling

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Positive News From NAR Research

by Team Member 20. January 2014 09:33

With 2013 now over, it is time to take stock of the impact from the strong 2013 housing market. Home price growth was robust in 2013 compared to 2012 and is currently forecast by NAR Research to finish the year 11.3% stronger. This improvement is important for the market as it has created equity for homeowners, boosted buyer confidence, and pulled many underwater homeowners into positive equity positions. 

A borrower who purchased a median priced home[1] in 2004 and held it for nine years, the current median tenure of a homeowner according to NAR’s annual Profile of HomeBuyers and Sellers, would have $28,114 in equity from the combined benefit of price appreciation and paying down the mortgage principle. A borrower who bought a median price home in 2012 would have more than $23,000 in equity.


It is important to note that borrowers who purchased in 2006 and 2007 at the peak of the market and thus those who experienced the sharpest price declines are now nearly in positive equity. A person who purchased in 2006 and owned through 2012 (not pictured) would have been underwater by roughly $28,200, but by 2013 this gap was down to $4,700. Continued price growth in 2014 will help to further ameliorate this gap. Homeowners who purchased since 2007 are in positive equity.

Even through the visitudes of the great recession, for most homeowners housing remains an effective vehicle for building equity and wealth. Read more - http://bit.ly/1cCavR2 #narresearch

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