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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Purchasing A HUD Home

Many buyers in their initial search seek out foreclosures and short sales because they are priced so agressively, but many are surprised by how much repair/updating these homes really need.  With a little elbow grease, or sometimes with a lot of elbow grease, these homes can be great purchases.

I truly have some very talented clients who are not afraid of the work it takes to get the job done and have a vision for homes.  Where some people see problems, they see opportunity.

Here are some before and after photos of one of my most talented clients.  This couple, with help from their dad, got down and dirty and right after closing, rolled up their sleeves and got busy removing carpet, toilets, windows, and popcorn ceiling.  They weren't even scared of the popcorn ceiling!

Before of the exterior:

After of the exterior:

This couple changed the trim color, base color, installed new windows and tore out the overgrown shrubs which had literally taken over the front yard. 

Removing the popcorn ceiling can be laborious, but the crisp, new ceilings of this home have brightened and modernized this home.  It really does help with resale!  I can't tell you how many times certain buyers will turn their noses up at this outdated texture.

Ceiling Before Removing Popcorn:

After Removal of Popcorn!

The Final Product!  Whoo Hoo!

[Insert Applause]

Friday, June 1, 2012

Girl Power!

The real estate market has been very challenging in the last five years.  With the rising number of foreclosures, short sales and sellers who have to come to the table with a check, the market for buyers, sellers and real estate professionals has become somewhat moody.  One of the biggest changes for me personally, is the relationship we have with the seller.  Before 2006, when the seller came to closing, he/she was very excited to pick up their check and move on to greener pasture.  They were great to work with when the buyer's lender or the buyer requested repairs because they were motivated to pick up the check.  In today's market, depending on a seller's situation, they may have purchased their home for more than the current buyer has offered.  So when they are approached with a repair request, it's like adding insult to injury for them.  "What more do they want from me?"

Real estate has been and remains today a long term investment.  Much like the stock market, it has fluctuated historically and home ownership is still the key to investment diversification.  Those who purchase homes, work on savings and investment will fair much better in their retirement years than those who do not.

There are opportunities in any real estate market, and the market we are experiencing right now is no exception to this rule.  The most encouraging trend that I have personally witnessed is the number of independent, young working women who have purchased homes.  They are hardworking and very thrifty savers.  These women have been very careful and prudent buyers who have purchased homes with loans at all time lows and if they remain in these homes for the next five years could impact the economy in very positive ways in the coming years.

Oh and yes, I have seen many single young bachelors make the move to purchasing homes instead of renting and waiting until they are married.  They too have been careful and prudent savers.  These young buyers are buying five maybe ten years sooner than my generation bought homes.

I'm very impressed with this Generation X!  And on that note, here is a photo of one of those proud young clients who purchased the most adorable cottage.  She is busy with landscape and is having a blast making it hers!