Posted in Uncategorized

Understanding Interest Rates

If you are in the market for a new home, or it is time to refinance your mortgage, there is no doubt you have been looking at the current interest rates.  But with all the financial jargon and the multitude of lenders and mortgages available, understanding your options can really be confusing.  Here are some simple facts about interest rates and how they affect your bottom line.

Do Your Research

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As with any major decision, knowing the facts about the housing and financial markets before making any major decision is of vital importance to protecting your investment.  Review online the national mortgage rates for different types of loans.  There are a number of sites where you can find this information, or you can ask your REALTOR to point you in the right direction.  In general, fixed rates will be higher, but as they don’t fluctuate over the term of your loan they may be a better choice for those who need the stability of fixed payments.  Also when comparing interest rates, be sure you are comparing the APR, or Annual Interest Rate, to ensure that your comparisons are on equal ground.

Also keep yourself informed on some of the riskier options that may be out there.  ARMs, interest-only mortgages, no-doc loans, and 100 percent mortgages are some of the more aggressive loan types out there.  They may be appropriate for your situation, but they present more risk for the lender, and are not always a wise financial choice.  They also often come with higher interest rates that may return to haunt you later.

Preparing Yourself To Get The Best Rates

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Understood or not, ultimately we all want to get the best interest rates for our mortgage in order to save money.  No matter what type of mortgage you choose, there are a few steps you can take to get the best rates.  You can reduce your rates by:

 

  • Saving a sizable down payment
  • Establishing a pattern of paying your bills on time
  • Reviewing your credit report and correcting any errors
  • Shopping around with multiple institutions and different types of lenders

Armed with these simple facts, you can protect yourself from bad financial choices and remain aware of the steps you should take to get the best interest rates.

 

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Posted in Uncategorized

Why Hire an A-One Virtual Assistant

A day in a life of a real estate agent is not that really easy. There are a lot of things that you need to do in the office like jumping from one task to another. In some situations doing it all by yourself seems like a good idea but it will not help you grow your business. Having a VA would definitely help you to focus on your primary task. This will also make your work and life a lot easier. So why not hire a virtual assistant from the Philippines? Filipino’s are known to have a hardworking personality. They can produce a quality of works which makes them a perfect fit for your business. So if you are planning to outsource real estate virtual assistant, you can never go wrong with A-One business solutions. It is one of the few company in the Philippine that provides real estate virtual assistant service. A-One Virtual Assistant is equipped to handle your transactions from contract to closing, manage your CRM’s, and take care of your marketing and all other administrative tasks.

Posted in Uncategorized

Why I am a Rockstar Virtual Assistant

I am the Rockstar Virtual Assistant because I have the “I can do attitude”. Like a Rockstar, I have the confidence to show everyone that I really can do rock! I am not afraid to learn new task and I have the initiative to learn new ideas. I have the passion, determination and the perseverance when it comes to work. Having these traits means that I don’t easily give up on something I started rather I see it as a challenge. I am open minded and a flexible person. I could easily adapt to changing situations and could work under pressure. As a Rockstar Virtual Assistant, I am a positive type of person. I stay focused on what matters most. This positive Rockstar attitude helps me keep moving on the right path. In order to stand out among the rest, I don’t compare myself with others because I believe I have my own originality. True commitment is another quality that I can share as a Rockstar VA. Commitment to productivity on what I do. I can also say I’m the jack of all trades. However, I always make an extra effort in order to exceed in everything that I do. When it comes to work I also have the discipline, honesty and time management skills. I have the motivation and the discipline to work even when there is no one telling me what to do. I have the integrity to always do what is right even when no one is seeing it. Being a Rockstar virtual assistant is all about living by faith. Let your faith be bigger than your fears. Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Lastly, I have the right attitude, skills, and knowledge and that makes me more of a Rockstar Virtual Assistant.

Posted in Uncategorized

The Ideal Buying and Selling Experience

We all know for the fact that buying and selling a home is not an easy process. Giving the opportunity on how can I transform the ideal of buying and selling is really a challenge for me to do. Definitely, I would make the process much easier not just for the buyer and the seller but with all the parties involve in the transaction process. This is how I’m going to change it.

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First let’s start with the home sellers. First I would make every home sellers know that hiring a professional real estate could actually help them make the whole transaction process much easier. Trying to sell your home on your own is not that really easy especially if it is your first time. That is why in general; hiring a professional real estate agent is highly recommended. Although you need to pay for a real estate agent commission however in the long run its worth paying for. Hiring a professional real estate agent could actually help to you to set a competitive selling price for your home, Agents can also perform many task all throughout the Real Estate transaction process. They know your interests, needs, and wants. Real estate agents can also help you to communicate with other people connected in the negotiation. Lastly, professional real estate agents are familiar with the all the paper work transaction so don’t have to worry that much and you can ensure that the process goes smoothly.

For Buyers

14775165834_aa0f81c584_mI have notice there are a lot of foreclosure properties or short sales properties that are listed on the market. So in order avoid this to happen it would be better if I will be implementing that every mortgage company will give the home buyer a very low interest rates on their mortgages. This way, it would give the chance for the homebuyers to afford the home that they would like to buy. But In reality, we could avoid foreclosure to happen if from the very start we already know how to set our budget. Determining how much you can afford so that you can come up to a better decision on what property you should buy.

Plus hiring a buyer’s agent could actually help the homebuyers do the job and buyer’s agent’s fee is typically free! That’s a good thing to know about hiring a buyer’s agent; their services are usually free because it is being paid by the seller’s agent. It would be easy for a buyer’s agent to look for properties because they have an access to all the properties that are listed on the market. Grabbing this kind of opportunity could actually make your home buying process much easier.

14591021787_86af058214_mThis is my own point of view in a home selling and home buying process. If every home buyer and home seller would actually seek the help of a professional real estate agent then the whole buying and selling experience could actually be much easier.

 

 

 

Photo credits to

https://www.flickr.com/photos/124808053@N07/14591021787/in/photostream/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/124808053@N07/14775165834

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Foreclosure Process

What is foreclosure? foreclosure-48120_1280

Foreclosure process begins when the owner of a real estate property has stop in paying their mortgages or whose owners are late in paying their loans. When this occurs, the lender or the bank will now file a foreclosure notice. This foreclosure notice is a legal document that lets you know that the bank has initiated a foreclosure proceeding. Foreclosure differs in every state, so let’s just focus on the general steps that are taken.

When you received a foreclosure notice it doesn’t mean that you are going to lose your home right away. Foreclosure notice is the first step of the foreclosure process that may take weeks or months to untold. There will be several stages in which you can have the opportunity pay for your loans and to avoid foreclosure. So it is very important to stay in contact with your lender whining the first month after you’ve missed a payment in order to gain control of the outcome.

In general most banks or lenders are giving the borrower a grace period for late payments usually with a fee added on the loan. If within 30 days the borrower was not able to pay for his or her mortgage then that’s the time the foreclosure process begin to hasten. After you’ve missed the second payment a phone call will be initiated. In most cases the lender or the bank will not accept partial payments they will only accept both late payments in order to bring the loan current. So it is very important that you cooperate with your lender and don’t ignore their calls in order to give you some advice or alternatives on what to do with your loans and to slow down the foreclosure process.

If within 90 days the homeowner was not able to pay for his or her loan the lender will send a notice of default (NOD). If in case the homeowner was not able to cure the default a foreclosure date is established. The homeowner now is going to receive a Notice of Sale and this notice will be posted on the property as well. Then it will be recorded at the Country Recorder’s Office where the property is located. The homeowner will also receive a copy of complaint and summons. When this happens, you should contact an attorney right away. You are given 28 days to answer the summons, you’re mortgage lender may grant you an extension to work on a resolution. If you fail to answer or were not able to reach a resolution the lender will proceed immediately to summary judgement. Once the court grants the motion, your lender will now contact the local Sheriff’s office to schedule the sale.

At the auction, the opening bid is set by the lender and the home is sold to the highest bidder. If the property was not sold in an auction the lender takes possession of it. Then the property becomes an REO property, Real Estate Owned.

 

Credits to:

https://www.biggerpockets.com/rei/foreclosureprocess/

http://www.savethedream.ohio.gov/foreclosuretimeline.aspx

http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUDsrc=/topics/avoiding_foreclosure/foreclosureprocess

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized

Moving Tips

Now you’re ready to move in to your new home. I’m pretty sure you’re very excited about it. That is why I wrote this blog about moving tips in order to make your life much easier by making your possession stay organized for a peaceful, hassle free and exciting move.

Make A List

Startup Stock PhotosWrite everything down. Before you start packing, create a simple record keeping system. List down the contents of each box and put a number on every box that you pack.

 

Use a Hand Carry Bag

Use a bag wherein you can have an easy access with your essentials such as toiletries, clothes, medicine kit, laptop etc. This way you can avoid getting too tired of unpacking your things and you can also avoid the risks of getting your things stolen during a move.

Do It Yourself Box Handles

In order to make picking up and lifting heavy boxes a bit easier you can also create a DIY box handles. Using a utility knife or cutter cut a handhold in two sides of the box. Then leave the top flaps of your triangular cut outs attached and then simply fold them in.

Put Labels on Your Boxes

When putting a label on the box put it both sides of the boxes not on top. This way it will be easy for you to identify them even if they are stacked & don’t forget to put on to which room they will be going into. So that when you arrive to your new home the unpacking process is much easier.

Use a clear plastic bin to pack the items that you will need first.

Using a clear bin allows you to see what’s in the inside. You can use this container to put your eating utensils, cookware, tools paper towels, cellphone charger, and cleaning supplies that you will need upon arrival to your new home.

Pack heavy – Pack Light

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Remember to always pack items in small boxes. This will make the transferring of the boxes much easier.

Pack the plates vertically

When packing your plate it would be better if you will pack them vertically rather than placing it flat and stacked. This way they’ll be less likely to break.

Use Rolling Luggage For Heavy Items

If you have a rolling luggage you can also use that to put your heavy items like books so that you can avoid the heavy lifting and you can just simply roll the bag to your moving truck.

Don’t Forget About The Fridge

Make your grocery last for only two weeks prior to moving so as to avoid ending up throwing out move foods. Lastly, remember to defrost and clean your refrigerator at least a day before moving. Have it thoroughly cleaned and dried the inside of the refrigerator. I would also suggest that you put some baking soda on it or a charcoal in a sack and place it inside your refrigerator. This way it will keep the interior smelling fresh.

 

Photo credits: cambodia4kidsorg via Flickr cc by 2.0

Posted in home selling blog articles, Uncategorized

How To Stay Organized During Your House Hunt

Before you begin to search for a new home, it is very helpful to have a checklist of what you’re looking for a home. There are a lot of beautiful houses out there that you can find and as you walk through an open house, you could easily get swept away by a home’s most charming detail. So, it is helpful that you keep track of everything that you see. In order for you to stay organize and focus. This is to make sure that you are making the right decision as you hunt for a new home.

These tips can help you stay organized and focus on the important things that you need to take note during the house hunting process.

Budget

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Photo Courtesy: Tax Credits

Can you afford to buy a house? Buying a home is going to be the biggest purchase of your life, so make sure you can handle it because if you’ve made a mistake even if it’s just small, can cost you a lot. You may ask yourself some questions like, Can I really afford to buy a home? Do I have extra money to pay for any additional expenses? Or, is your work stable enough to shoulder your mortgage?

Set Your Priorities

Before you begin to search for a home, create a list to write down all the things that you need and things you want to have for your new home. When you’re making your list, start with the basics: your budget, square footage, number of bedrooms, bathrooms, a large kitchen etc. This way it will not only help you to stay on track and focus but it will also help you to make a decision much easier before buying a new home.

 Make A Comparison

After attending several open houses or showings, it becomes difficult to stay on track on the features of each property. So it would be better if you have a checklist to bring along to each property and take note of everything that you see during and after each tour. This will serve as an instrument or as your personal guide to help you make things much easier, especially when you look back and when you’re making a comparison.

Good Location

Location is also one of the most important things that you have to consider in buying a new home. Of course you would want your home to be accessible to your work, schools, shopping malls, hospitals and to other conveniences that you need in your daily life.

Bring Your Family or Friend

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Photo Courtesy: Mark Moz

When viewing a property for the first time, you’ll get so excited and overwhelmed which makes it difficult for you to stay on focus. You might not notice some problems like crack on the wall, stains, condition of the roof, lack of storage space, etc. That is why it is very helpful if you bring along a friend, a family member or your partner. This way, they can help you see these issues and you’ll be able to get their opinions as well.

 

 

Posted in Real Estate Pics, Uncategorized

Why Listing Photos Matters

Whether you’re an agent or you’re selling a home, listing photos is very important part of advertising in real estate.  Especially nowadays buyers are often busier and may not have the time to drive by not unless they are really serious in buying a home. Listings with great photography will surely caught the attention of the homebuyers online. Because typically when a home buyer is looking for a home at online listings; the first thing that they look is the photo. If the photo does not look good buyers would definitely not bother to click on the listing and will just move on.

Appropriate Equipment

A poor quality images is one of the common mistakes that I’ve noticed when I look at the homes for sale on the internet. Appropriate equipment should be used in order to achieve properly lit and high-high resolution photos. It’s worth spending to buy decent equipment.

The Brighter The Better

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The most important part of the picture is the light. When taking a photo, if it’s possible try to schedule it on a sunny day and make sure to open the curtains to allow the natural sunlight in. Nowadays in the internet age, you only have one chance to make a first impression. If your images look so dull and gloomy you will lose the interest of the people who are viewing your property.

 Staging and Prep

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Since first impression is very important, real estate agents and sellers should also spend more time on photo shoot as they do in creating a curb appeal or when staging an open house.  As a seller, getting the right photos for your home is very important because this will help you to attract homebuyers online. So you have to make sure that your home is fully cleaned and free of clutters before you schedule a photo shoot.

Take Pictures Of What Really Counts

Creating good visuals is an important part of advertising. This is the first thing that you should prioritize when you are marketing your listing on the MLS. This way, you can attract people to view your listings and can have the possibility of making an offer. So, when you are taking a picture you have to ensure that the house must be free of clutter and reasonably clean. You have to allow the person or the home buyer who is seeing the pictures to visualize his or her things instead of seeing someone else’s.  You may also try to include colorful things in the photos such as flowers, artwork etc.

Make Improvements If It Is Needed

There are several ways that can now use to enhance any pictures that you might need a little improvement. With the use the free software on your computer you can now enhance the photos that you want to improve.

Size Matters

If you’re uploading an image on the MLS it would be better if you would shrink your images first using a photo editor before uploading the file to optimize the photos. You can also use Photoshop if you have one.

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It is also a good idea to crop and resize the photo on your end before uploading the picture. This way it will look better compare to the other one.

 

Posted in Real Estate Selling Tips

Tips For First Time Home Sellers

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Credits to: Mark Moz

Selling a home is not an easy process especially if you haven’t done it before. There are a lot of things that you have to consider before you move forward with your sale. There are several things that you must deal with if you want your home to sell quickly and at a good price.

Prepare your home for the market

Preparing your home before selling it is one of the important things that you need to consider. You have to make sure that your home is ready and well cleaned as soon as it’s listed for sale. You can also do a home inspection in order to correct some problems. This way it will greatly decrease that a deal may fall apart.

Another way of preparing your home is to improve your home curb’s appeal. Just a few tips on how to improve you home curb’s appeal before selling your home include;

  • Painting your front door
  • Create an instant garden
  • Replacing the old hardware
  • Replacing your mailbox
  • Paint the garage door

There are also dozens of small and inexpensive ways that you can find on the internet to improve your homes curb appeal.

 You need a professional real estate agent

Trying to sell your home on your own is not that really easy especially if it is your first time. That is why in general; hiring a professional real estate agent is highly recommended. Although you need to pay for a real estate agent commission however in the long run its worth paying for. Hiring a professional real estate agent will help you to set a competitive selling price for your home, Agents can also perform many task all throughout the Real Estate transaction process. They know your interests and needs, and wants. Real estate agents can help you to communicate with other people connected in the negotiation. Lastly, professional real estate agents are familiar with the all the paper work so don’t have to worry that much and you can ensure that the process goes smoothly.

Fair market value

As a seller, this is one of the most important factors that you should give consideration “PRICING”.  Pricing is one of the hardest decisions of every sellers make. Not only pricing is difficult, it’s risky. You must consult your professional real estate agent to assist you in pricing your home. A professional real estate agent can perform an accurate study by doing a comparative market analysis or the CMA. This way it will help you to determine the on how you will price your home.

Know your closing expenses are when selling a home

As a first time home seller you should be ready for the expenses that are associated with the home selling process. As a seller there are a lot of fees that you need to pay for. Generally, the estimated price is about 8.5% of the purchase price aside from the expenses that you need to spend to get your home in a good shape.

Create an effective marketing plan

Having a marketing plan is a sure way to attract potential home. Professional photography is one of the best marketing strategies in order to have an impressive image for your home. These images can be used on your listings online, blogs, fliers, brochures, posters and other social media sites.

Posted in Front yard curb appeal idea

Tips To Improve Home Curb’s Appeal

First impression is important, especially if you’re planning to sell a home. Making your home more attractive can caught the attention of the homebuyers. This could also add thousands to its value and helps you sell your home faster.

There are several ways that can help you improve your homes curb’s appeal

Give your front door a makeover

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A front door that pops can create a great impact to draw the attention of the home buyers. Make a statement by painting your door with a color that burst. It will look modern and inviting. However, if you don’t want to paint it, just clean it. You can just remove any dirty spots around the door knob, and use metal polish on the door fixtures to enhance its beauty.

Paint the garage door

The garage area takes up a lot of space to your home. Making it more visually attractive will definitely draw the attention of everyone, including potential home buyers. Just make sure to match the color of the painting to your house style.

Create an instant gardenfloral-967113_1920

Planting flowers along the sidewalk, in front of the house, flower boxes and hanging plants adds a welcoming feel and colorful effects to any home exterior. Planting flowers is one of the easiest and cost effective ways to create a big impact to your homes curb’s appeal.

Replace the old hardware

Don’t’ just overlook the simple things that can help you enhance your home curb’s appeal. A dazzling door knocker and a glossy paint door can make the plainest door look very sophisticated. You can also place new porch light or you can just upgrade the ones you already have. This will help you add some style and interest to your home exterior.

Replace your mailbox

If you think that your mailbox is a bit old, replacing it can create an immediate impression. Mailboxes are practically inexpensive just make sure to get a mailbox that matches your home style. You can also try to plant around its base to add more appeal.

Cut back trees and bushes

No matter how lovely your home is if no one can see it doesn’t make sense. Tree branches and bushes that obscure your home features makes it look darker and uninviting to homebuyers. In addition to that trees that rub against your house can damage your siding; it will also limit the amount of sunlight that can go through your windows. Cut away anything that covers your windows or anything that rub against your house. This way it will show the beauty of your home and adds attraction to homebuyers.

There are dozens of small and inexpensive ways that you can do to improve your homes curb’s appeal. You can also find additional ideas and tips on the internet. Just make sure when you decide to make some upgrades to your home, consider what it currently looks like and what improvements you can do to make it look great.

Enhancing your homes curb appeal will not only make it easier to sell, but also it will give your house a personality in which you can take pride in as a home owner. Enjoy!