Disconnect Your Emotions
When conversing with real estate agents, you will often find that when they talk to you about buying real estate, they will refer to your purchase as a "home." Yet if you are selling property, they will often refer to it as a "house." There is a reason for this. Buying real estate is often an emotional decision, but when selling real estate you need to remove emotion from the equation.
You need to think of your house as a marketable commodity. Property. Real estate. Your goal is to get others to see it as their potential home, not yours. If you do not consciously make this decision, you can inadvertently create a situation where it takes longer to sell your property.
The first step in getting your home ready to sell is to "de-personalize" it. You should remove all photographs and other small items from table-tops. Buyers should be allowed to imagine their personal possessions in the home, not look at yours.You should also put away your personal collections so that buyers don't get so interested in looking at them that they forget to look at the house.
Create A Mood
Make Sure It's Your House They Come Back to for a Second Look
Here's a critical bit of home selling advice: don't even think of putting your house on the market until you've taken a close look at its condition. You usually only have one shot at impressing potential home buyers, so take some time now to prepare the house for showings and you might be rewarded with a faster sale and a higher offer. In order to do so though, you must trust your instincts. Ask yourself what changes would make immediate improvements and what features you want to show off the most. Evaluate your own home as if you were a first time homebuyer.
Home Prep Advice Tips
Contact the Arizona Key Team to learn more about starting the process of selling your home.
Search Chandler homes for sale on one of Arizona's best real estate websites. The Arizona Key Team is dedicated to helping you make the most informed decision for you and your family. Search our real estate knowledge base and learn about the market you are thinking of investing in.
Chandler homes for sale are located in several different types of neighborhoods including golf communities, active adult communities and traditional family communities.
Chandler, AZ is a city in Maricopa county and a major suburb of Phoenix, AZ. Chandler is home to many technology companies including Pay Pal, Intel and Orbital ATK. In 2010, Chandler's population according to the Census was 236,123 people. The top employers in Chandler, AZ include companies like Intel, Wells Fargo and PayPal.
There are many parks, recreation facilities, aquatic centers and museums located in Chandler, AZ including Tumbleweed Recreation Center, Chandler Museum, Chandler Aquatics, Dog Parks and Chandler Senior Center.
Chandler is well known for its Annual Ostrich Festival held in March. Activities feature food, music, ostrich races, petting zoo and many more family friendly events.
The city of Chandler has seen tremendous growth since the early 1990's, holding its rank amongst the fastest growing cities in America. With nearly 100,000 homes and over 236,000 people, Chandler was named an All-American City and celebrated its Centennial in 2012.
If you are interested in learning more about Chandler, or starting a home search, contact the Arizona Key Team.
Check Your Own Credit Report
Lenders analyze your credit scores to determine whether or not to approve a loan, including a home mortgage. Creditors are more likely to lend you the money, if they feel like you will repay it in a timely manner. Credit scores help lenders determine how much risk you are. The higher your score, the less risk they think you will be. Your credit score is the three-digit number that compares your credit performance to that of similar consumers. Scores range from 300 to 850.
You are entitled to a copy of your credit report, including a list of everyone who has requested your report within the past year. It is best to review your reports from all three credit bureaus for accuracy once a year as well as several months before applying for a loan.
To obtain a copy of your report, visit www.annualcreditreport.com. It is important to request reports from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion because each bureau may have different information depending on which companies have reported to them on your accounts. Mortgage lenders often look at all three of the bureaus' FICO scores and take the middle score to assess your eligibility.
Correct Credit Report Mistakes
Your credit score is only as good as what shows up in your credit report. If there are any inaccuracies, it is important to dispute them by enclosing supporting documents in a letter to the bureau.
Always Pay Bills On Time
It is imperative to avoid late and missed payments because your payment history is the single biggest factor in a credit score, accounting for about 35% of the score. Since recent history carries more weight than what happened years ago, making on-time payments is a powerful way to rebuild your credit. If you know you will be unable to pay bills on time, contact your creditors to work out a payment arrangement and negotiate to keep the late notations off of your credit reports.
Keep Your Credit Card Balances Low
Pay off debt, don't move it around. Owing the same amounts, but having fewer open accounts, can lower your score because lenders look at the total amount of debt you have in comparison to the total amount of credit available to you. The more debt you pay off, the wider that gap and the better your credit score. It's ideal to keep your balances below 25% of your credit card limit. Another way to keep a healthy balance-to-limit ratio is to charge less. Regardless if you pay off your debt each month, credit scores do not distinguish between those who carry a balance on their cards and those who do not.
Do Not Close Unused Accounts
A credit card with a zero balance might help your score. Closing credit accounts lowers the total credit available to you, which would increase your balance-to-limit ratio and, therefore, lower your credit score. Plus, closing an account does not necessarily remove it from your report. Payment history may still be considered for scoring purposes.
Do Not Apply To Open Multiple Accounts At Once
No matter how tempting those pre-approved credit card offers are, adding accounts too rapidly sends up a red flag that you might not be able to handle your credit responsibly. In addition, a new account will lower the average age of your accounts, which is another factor in your FICO score.
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So you are considering buying rental property. You are now among the millions of people each year who consider buying investment real estate. Owning rental property can be very rewarding financially.
Becoming a successful rental property owner requires some work on your part. While it is possible to sit back and collect income year after year without doing any other work on your property, it is not a very realistic expectation if you want to maintain a profitable investment for years to come.
Before you go out and purchase a rental property do some research so you understand what to expect before you jump in and buy an income property. Your job is to rent out your property, keep your tenants happy and maintain your property so it can be easily rented out. This means you must fill your vacancies, respond to your tenants needs, and take the time to make repairs that will last and even increase your property’s value. Take some time to read articles on renting and becoming a landlord before you move ahead and buy a rental property. Investment real estate can be a worthwhile investment if you are well prepared to face any challenges that may come along.
Investing in income property is riskier than buying a second home, because rather than having a vacation home to go to relax and enjoy the weekend, an income property is purchased to generate income. A duplex may sound easy to rent and maintain. But if one unit is empty, 50% of your rental income isn't coming in that month. Rental income is usually aimed at paying off a mortgage used to purchase the income property. Valuing an income property is more complex than valuing a residence. When you buy a residence, you are calculating your ability to pay a mortgage out of your own earnings. When you buy an income property, you're calculating how the income will help pay the mortgage.
Deciding where to buy a rental property, there are several things you should consider. The supply of potential tenants, the average rents you can collect, and the ability of tenants in that area to pay are all important factors that you should research before your purchase. There are many advantages in purchasing income property in college communities, like Tempe, Arizona. There is always a need for rental units and an endless supply of renters each year. Rental income tends to be higher in college communities versus other areas and vaccines are limited. When deciding whether to buy a single family home or multiple units, remember that units tend to be far easier to rent out. Look for a property that can be sold quickly. Look for properties with features that will attract renters such as an apartment with a garage or private laundry facilities. If the property you are interested in purchasing is currently being rented, ask about its tenant’s rental history.
An income property has an annual net operating income. This is a figure of rental income less anticipated vacancies, maintenance and other expenses. Most investors divide the net operation income by something called the "cap rate"to come up with the proper value for one apartment in a complex. The cap rate relates to the expected annual rate of return on the property, and most income property buyers recommend using a cap rate of 10% when evaluating a property. This kind of simple calculation isn't perfect, but in a real-estate market that is increasingly frantic, doing even simple math can help you understand if you're overpaying for a property. Like investing in stocks, investing in real estate works best when you don't overpay.
Search Arizona homes for sale. Contact the Arizona Key Team for real estate assistance.
Do you make your payments on time? Since this determines approximately 35% of your score, it is certainly in your best interest to make all payments on time! Your payment history includes credit cards, car payments, mortgages, student loans and other loan types. Other public records on file, such as a bankruptcy, will be calculated in this group as well. If you have been late on payments, information such as how recently these payments were made and how much time elapsed between the due date and pay date will also factor into your score.
How much debt do you have? All outstanding balances for credit cards, car loans, mortgages, etc. will determine about 30% of your score. How many of these accounts have balances? For example, if you can possible pay down significantly or pay off credit card debt, you’ll be in much better shape during loan approval. Eliminating some avenues of credit can demonstrate your willingness and ability to responsibly pay back new loans.
How long have you been establishing your credit? Specifically, how long have your current accounts been opened and how long as it been since you used each of them? This usually determines approximately 15% of your score. If no credit history exists, you should begin by establishing credit accounts and be sure to keep them spotless. The less history that exists, the less the loan amount you’ll likely be able to obtain.
Pursuit of New Credit
Each time you apply for credit, there is an inquiry into your current credit score. If you recently applied for a VISA card, Nordstrom account and car loan, you may want to hold off applying for a home loan for a few months. Each inquiry may slightly reduce your FICO score and may portray you as someone overindulging in credit. This usually accounts for approximately 10% of your total score.
Types of Credit in Use
The number of accounts (such as ATM cards, car loans, credit cards) you have determines approximately 10% of your final score.
Once your bank is aware of your FICO score they may or may not choose to share this information with you. Assuming they do share your score with you, it is important to remember the higher the score, the more likely you are to obtain a loan. Also, a higher score directly translates to lower interest rates. Over time with home loans, lower interest rates can play a significant role in the total amount you SAVE!
Other Factors That Determine Loan Approval
Now, a great FICO score will not be the only determining factor in loan approval. Some additional factors that figure into the approval process include the following:
Here are some tips on how to save for the down payment on your future home. We hope this will help you to most effectively tap into your resources and budget your finances. The more money you have saved for a down payment, the more choices you will have when negotiating your mortgage.
Keep Track of your Finances and Cut-back on Non-essential Spending
Write down your monthly income, savings, and spending. Even a couple bucks for your daily Carmel Macchiato at Starbucks adds up. So instead of spending money on the small stuff, put that into your savings. Open a savings account specifically for the down payment. Calculate how much you can afford to contribute to this account and arrange to make regular deposits.
Pay Off your Debt
Don't focus solely on saving for your down payment at the expense of paying interest charges on credit cards. The interest rates on these loans are much higher than the average rate for a home mortgage, meaning you are actually wasting money by accumulating a larger down payment while carrying credit card debt. Also, realize that the amount of debt you already have will determine how much you can borrow for your home. After minimum payments, start with the card with the highest interest rate and pay as much as you can. If you have more than one card, repeat this process after you've eliminated the debt in the first account. You'll be amazed how much money you can put into savings once it is not paying for interest on credit card debt.
Make your Savings Work for You
Rather than saving all of the money yourself, let what you've already saved earn you interest at the best rate possible. Often the best option is a Certificate of Deposit. Although the earnings on CDs are lower than some other types of investments, this is offset by a lower amount of risk. However, CDs can carry very low rates of return when interest rates are low. In these times, it is advisable to buy several certificates with different maturity dates. This strategy is known as laddering; if interest rates rise, the short term certificates can be reinvested at a higher rate. If rates should fall, then the longer term CDs have locked in a higher rate of return.
Use Special Programs
There are many programs for homebuyers in down-payment distress. Borrowers in a wide range of incomes, locales and professional groups may have access to aid from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored offices that buy mortgages and package them as investments. Some lenders and government agencies will let you buy a foreclosure with no down payment if you have good credit and they are anxious to have the home occupied, or if you have skills that you can use to increase the home's value. Various nonprofit and community groups also lend a hand to buyers struggling to put money down on a home. And don't forget about assistance from state agencies. To qualify for a down-payment assistance program, the purchaser typically can earn no more than 80% of a region's median income.
Use IRA Funds
Tax laws allow you to use up to $10,000 in Individual Retirement Account funds as a down payment if you have never owned a house. If you are married and you both are first-time buyers, you each can pull from your retirement accounts, meaning a potential $20,000 down payment. The IRS defines a first-time buyer as one who did not own a principal residence at any time during the two years prior to the purchase of the new home. If you are eligible, the IRS waves the penalty fee for early withdrawal. Although, you are likely to owe state and federal income tax on the amount withdrawn depending on the type of IRA you have. If you do not qualify as a first-time buyer, early withdrawal will include a 10 percent penalty as well as income tax
Borrow from your 401(k)
Consider borrowing against your 401(k) for the down payment. Unlike an IRA home-related withdrawal, you'll have to pay back any money you take out. Even though your account contributions were made with pretax money, your repayment will be made with after-tax dollars.
Make Money on Items Lying Around the House
One person's trash is another person's treasure. Go through your house and sell unwanted items. Have a garage sale or post items on eBay. Perhaps you'll even find a savings bond hiding in a drawer that is ready to be cashed in!
Receive a Gift
Tax law allows gifts of several thousand dollars a year to be bestowed without tax consequences to either the giver or recipient, and it is not limited to relatives. Check with the IRS to determine the gift-exclusion amount as it is adjusted annually to reflect inflation. If no one is in a position to give you the money, perhaps they will agree to co-sign a loan.
When determining the neighborhood you would like to live in, you should consider its location approximate to your job as well as schools, public transportation, shopping, museums, theaters and other attractions that might interest you. Drive around the neighborhood and talk to residents. Can you picture yourself happily living here? Most importantly, choose a community where you feel comfortable.
Once you have narrowed your search to a particular area, contact the local chamber of commerce for promotional literature about the community. We also suggest visiting the local library as it is a wonderful source for information on local events.
It is best to evaluate each house based on what it has to offer. There are many things to look for when walking through a home, including the following:
Once you weed out the homes that do not interest you, consider the details of the ones you like, including the amount of work that needs to be done if you purchase the home. On average, homebuyers walk through fifteen houses before selecting one.
Homes For Sale In Arizona
Imagine never running out of hot water. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to take a shower with an unlimited supply of hot water without the possibility of it turning cold at any minute. Using a tankless water heater is the only way that this can this be achieved. Also called “on demand” or “instantaneous” water heaters, tankless water heaters only heat water when needed and thus do not have a tank that runs out of water (as is the case with conventional water heaters). Consumers across the country are realizing that tankless water heaters not only provide continuous on-demand hot water, but also a substantial cost and space savings.
Homeowners who like to relax by slipping into a warm luxurious bubble bath often find themselves sitting in tepid water. Instead of slipping into a tub for a hot soak, they sit shivering. In order to prevent this, one would have to constantly checking the temperature to make sure the hot water supply doesn’t run out before the tub is full.
The problem is that conventional hot water tanks often fail to have enough hot-water capacity to fill 60- or 80-gallon bathtub. However, through the wonders of modern technology, a solution to the problem does exist. Tankless water heaters are designed to provide an endless supply of hot water, allowing homeowners to fill the tub to the brim at anytime. Unlike conventional storage-tank water heaters, tankless versions heat water only as it is used. When a hot water tap is opened, sensors in the heater kick-on to activate the heating elements, which then allow the heater to deliver a constant supply of hot water.
There are many benefits to owning a tankless water heater, including the amount of energy that is saved. A conventional water heater uses up to 20 percent or more of a household’s annual energy cost. It also loses from 10 to 20 percent of the annual water heating cost because of the heated water just sitting in the tank. This water is constantly being heated and therefore using energy for water not in use. On the other hand, a tankless heater uses energy only to heat the water when a faucet or appliance is turned on. When not in use, the water heater is off. Many tankless water heaters will save a household anywhere from 25 to 45 percent in energy expenditures. Tankless water heaters save space with no need for a bulky tank and can be installed virtually anywhere in the house. Equipment life may be longer than tank-type heaters because they are less subject to corrosion. The expected life of a tankless water heater is 20 years, compared with 10 to 15 years for conventional water heaters.
Tankless water heaters have an electric, gas, or propane heating device that is activated by the flow of water. Once activated, the heater provides a constant supply of hot water. The maximum flow rate at a desired temperature will be determined by the capacity of the heater. Gas tankless water heaters typically have larger capacities than electric tankless water heaters. In most cases, electric tankless water heaters will cost more to operate than gas tankless water heaters. Though tankless water heaters can operate on electricity, gas-powered heaters tend to deliver hot water at higher rates and are recommended for houses with more than two bathrooms.
Tankless water heaters range in type and price from a small under-sink unit to a gas-fired unit that delivers 5 gallons per minute. Typically, the more hot water the unit produces, the more it will cost.
New construction is the ideal time to install a tankless water heater in order to maximize the benefits and minimize costs. Heaters can be centrally located in the house in order to minimize hot water runs. Additionally, electric wiring and/or venting is installed easily during construction rather than being retrofitted.
When transitioning from the use of conventional water heaters to tankless systems in your existing home, it is recommended as with any major retrofit to choose your contractor wisely. Make sure that they specialize in tankless water heaters so you get a high quality installation from someone who understands what has to be done.
Tankless water heaters have improved environmental performance over conventional water heaters due to their decreased energy consumption. Other environmental benefits reside in the decreased material use resulting in less manufacturing, lower transportation and storage requirements, and less landfill volume. The outlet temperature can be set lower than tank systems; the potential for scalding accidents is reduced. Tankless hot water heaters save energy and thus money. Using energy efficiently and conscientiously reduces pollution, global warming, and waste. Better use of energy can mean saving money.
Tankless systems are a win-win not only for your wallet but for the environment. For more information on this and other remodeling and energy saving topics, visit our Knowledge Base or contact the Arizona Key Team.
Skylights allow up to 30 percent more natural light to permeate a dark space without sacrificing privacy. Skylights in Arizona allows for little or no need for artificial light, skylights allow for less energy consumption during both the winter and summer months. Skylights will decrease your overall energy costs saving you money in the long run. So not only do they look beautiful, they are functional too.
Modern installation methods have reduced risk of leakage and therefore made skylights increasingly popular in the last decade. They are available in a variety of shapes, sizes, and designs, so it is easy to find one that is right for your home remodeling project. Skylights should cover a minimum of ten percent of the total square footage of the room. You can cluster smaller skylights together for maximum effect or just use one large skylight.
The most influential motivation behind this trend toward more light-filled, open homes is most likely the psychological and physiological benefits. It enhances moods, improves our health and can boost energy up to 24 percent, according to scientific experts. A home with maximum daylight is the perfect retreat in this stress-filled world.
You should investigate the current interest rates and maximum loan amount that you would be able to afford in order to establish the price range of houses to consider. Lenders calculate your debt-to-income ratio, which is a comparison of your expenses to your gross (pre-tax) income. Monthly mortgage payments should total no more than a certain percentage of your gross income, while the mortgage payment, combined with other long-term debts (such as car payments) should not exceed a certain percentage of your gross income. The lender will also take into consideration your credit history and cash available for a down payment when determining your maximum loan amount.
Once you have started your Arizona home search and determined the price range of homes to look at, next you should consider your needs. Think about where you would like to live and how much space you would like to have. We suggest driving through neighborhoods you are considering to get an idea of what you want. When deciding on possible locations, think about distance to your job, schools, family, etc. It's best to make a list of your priorities, such as location, size, and amenities. Determine the minimum requirements that the house must have for you to consider it as well as a wish list of perks you would like it to have.
For more details on this process we can sit down with you and discuss the home buying process as well as help you get in touch with a lender to go over the loan specifics. Contact the Arizona Key Team at 480.202.6846 or through our website to start the process.