Buying a House? Third Time’s a Charm!

In this market, never give up! Anything is possible... After three tries, my client finally won the contract on her dream home!  Anything is possible during these real estate deals with the dysfunctional real estate market we are now experiencing.  SO MANY DEALS ARE CANCELLED during the escrow period  due to financing difficulties, multiple offers or inspection problems, that many homes come back on the market for a 2nd or 3rd shot.  Just because you lose out on a house you are bidding on does not necessarily mean you are out of luck. Lessons learned? If you find a house you love, put in a strong offer...if you lose out, don't give up until … [Read more...]

Hey HUD!! Most Buyers Expect Power & Water When They Buy a Home!

What the HUD Property Condition Report Does Not Tell You Let me just start off my saying that I think the folks at MCB do a great job managing these properties that are offered on the market by the Housing and Urban Development Department (HUD).  But here is on problem that could be handled better... One of my clients has a HUD home in escrow.  We are setting up utilities to perform a home inspection.  Note that HUD does not have the same due diligence policy that our Arizona contract outlines - when they say As-Is, they mean it. It is difficult to get a refund of earnest money from HUD so the inspection is more for informational purposes … [Read more...]

Looking for a House? Why HGTV is Not Your Best Friend…

Buying a Home Requires a Dose of Reality...Not a Dose of Reality TV! So, you've decided to become a homeowner...congratulations! Buying a house is a big task, so do your research and be informed. But one place you may want to stay away for a while is the channel on your TV that carries HGTV...when it comes to buying a house, you need a strong does of reality and you are not going to get that from reality TV. Buying a house is a complicated process that can stretch for months for many home buyers. Coming in with unrealistic expectations can make a difficult process even harder.  Your best bet is to find a realtor you trust. then trust that … [Read more...]

Making the Tough Decision to Walk Away From Your House? Some Tips…

Underwater and overwhelmed? Some tips to help you chart a course... Short sale, strategic default, walking away...whatever you want to call it, there are more families than you can imagine who are sitting around the kitchen table trying to decide if that's what their future holds. And that difficult decision is made even harder by all the chatter out there about what's right, what's wring, how to do it, why to do it, and on, and on...and unfortunately, many of those people giving the advice are just trying to make a buck. So what do you do... Start by leaving the emotional baggage out of the decision-making process...it's not going to help. … [Read more...]

So this is what housing recovery looks like…

The Housing Market is Slowly Buy Surely Being Restored It seems that I spend more putting out fires these days than putting in contracts. Between lender challenges, short sale booby traps, REO nightmares, and all the wacky stuff that's happening behind the scenes in real estate right now, you never know if a deal is going to close until it actually closes. But the reality of the situation is that this is exactly what kind of environment a recovering market is...it's not pretty. There isn't going to be a short and sweet wrap up to a story that was many years in the making.  It's all about cleaning up messes and rebuilding and that is what … [Read more...]

Introducing the East Valley Team – The Best Darn Team in the Valley!

Kristin LaVanway & Dean Ouellette join forces to provide the best real estate service in the East Valley I am very excited to announce that fellow video blogger and Phoenix Real Estate FAQs reporter Dean Ouellette and I have decided to join forces to form the East Valley Team. With our growing businesses and the complexity of today's real estate transaction, working together provides us with a stronger and more efficient way to provide the excellent service our client deserve. And, I had to counter all that country music that Dean's always playing with a little rock...thank you Red Hot Chili Peppers! We would love to hear from … [Read more...]

Missed Out on the Homebuyer Tax Credit? So What…

If you are wondering if you can still buy a house, here's how to find out... Whether we like it or not, the days of the First TIme Home Buyer Tax Credit and the Move-up Homebuyer Tax Credit are over. From now on, when you buy a house, there won't be a litte something in it for you from Uncle Sam.  There are probably plenty of folks out there who are really disappointed and think there is no reason for them to buy a house. Well, that's kind of silly... There is no denying that $8,000 is a lot of money. Especially after you buy a house and are now heading to Home Depot every weekend. But the $8,000 tax credit, a one-time event, should have … [Read more...]

How Do I Select The Right Real Estate Agent?

How can I pick the best real estate agent when buying or selling my home? Dean Ouellette and I offer some tips to help you choose the right real estate agent to help you when buying or selling a home. Choosing the right agent can make the whole transaction process go a lot smoother. The best agent is typically the agent who knows what they are doing and who you can develop a good workign relationship with. Buying or selling your home is a very personal process and you need to find an agent whom you trust. Interview several agents...check out their websites...ask for referrals...do whatever it takes to make you feel comfortable with your … [Read more...]

Lease Purchases & Lease Options: Are They A Good Idea?

Is a lease option or lease purchase a good option after a foreclosure or short sale? Lease purchases - where the buyer leases with a purchase contract in place - and lease options - where the buyer leases with an option to buy in the future - have most often worked much better for the seller than the buyer.  In both the lease option and lease purchase, the buyer pays upfront money - usually 1% of the purchase price or more - as an earnest money deposit or an option fee - and a higher amount in rent, a portion of which is credited at the time of purchase. If you want to buy a house, but can't currently qualify for a mortgage, this alternative … [Read more...]