Big Box Banks vs. Local Mortgage Banker

Does it really matter who you choose to do your mortgage? Can't you just go down to any ho-hum bank and get a home loan? Or call that spammy 1-800 number (that is most likely a sex hotline) you got from a quick Google search? Yes, it matters! And it’s a big FLIPPIN’ deal! You might be thinking, “Big Box is the way to go because I like everything BIG, GINORMOUS, and boxy—Texas-style!” (Remember that hit song, I'm Boxy and I Know It? LMAO!) But visit any realtor-infused happy hour and you will understand why realtors start breaking out in a cold sweat when they see a pre-qualification from 1-800-Big Box Walmart Wannabe Bank. When you … [Read more...]

First Quarter 2016 – Review of the Phoenix Real Estate Market

It's about that time when I like to tantalize all of you with some market statistics! How is the Phoenix real estate market so far in 2016? Well let's take a look... Supply is gradually increasing as it usually does this time of year, but demand has been a little sluggish in the price ranges below about $250-300K in most areas, and a lot sluggish in the upper price ranges. Sellers still call the shots below $250K in most geographic areas, but buyers and in hog heaven in those upper ranges. Hope you bought your lottery tickets because this is the year to buy that mansion. Interest rates have decreased slightly since the Fed lowered the … [Read more...]

Bidding War? Bring It, Baby!

https://youtu.be/lfrwDv1DgqY This weekend, I submitted offers in two "bidding wars". OK. They were more like bidding skirmishes, as a bidding war these days usually garners 3-5 offers compared to the 25-40 offers we were seeing a few years ago. Multiple offer situations tend to scare buyers. But guess, what? My clients offers were accepted in both cases. Multiple offers are unavoidable when there are fewer listings than buyers, so here are my tips on how to be victorious should a bidding war be in your future. CHOOSE A STRONG TEAM: First and, absolutely, without a doubt, necessary is choosing the right Realtor. This is no time for … [Read more...]

Can You Really Sell Your House in November (or December!)

Real estate sales typically slow down towards the end of the year here in Phoenix. Buyers are distracted with holidays and take longer to make a decision. Inventory increases, so there are more choices. Advantages the sellers had during the busy season tend to wane as the weather cools off. But what if you NEED to sell your house now? This may not be the most ideal time to sell your house, but it is doable. About 5,000 homes will go under contract this November compared to over 8,000 that went under contract in June, one of the busiest months. Sure the number is lower, but that's still 5,000 houses! And yours could be one of … [Read more...]

That Solar Energy Thing – Savings in Downtown Mesa

Yes, it gets hot here. Really hot. And even when it's not blazing hot, it's more than likely sunny. Really sunny. It only rains about 30 days a year here. So, if you are a weather forecaster, your job is pretty easy. Because we have SO MUCH SUN in Phoenix, it makes sense to consider solar energy. A lot of sense. Solar is catching on and companies that supply solar panels to homeowners are popping up faster than weeds in March. More and more new home builders are offering solar as an option. It's a big deal in the Valley of the Sun, so much so that in 2012, Governor Janet Napolitano observed that solar power in Arizona has the potential to … [Read more...]

Landlord! Take My House Please!

I hate moving! But the worst part of this move was not loading the moving van, packing, unpacking, or even the fact that it's a hot Arizona summer (the season I always move). No, the worst part of this move is turning the house back over to the landlord and realizing that he is planning to squeeze me for that security deposit. Despite the fact that we have spent over $700 cleaning and sprucing, the landlord's representative, "Janet", nit-picksevery little thing she can in the final walk-through inspection. Not only do I get to forfeit whatever "accounting" decides to deduct for dead light bulbs, a dead fly, a piece of paper that blew into … [Read more...]

Who Needs Cable When You’ve Got a Real Estate License

Trust me...the entertainment value of real estate is gravely underestimated!! … [Read more...]

Real Estate Negotiation 101

Negotiating real estate deals just ain't the same anymore Is it just me? It just doesn't seem like it's much fun any more to negotiate a real estate transaction. Short sales, REO's and homeowners who have have watched all the equity drain from the homes have taken all the pleasure out of the process. Remember the good old days, sitting around a table, playfully bantering counter offers around until everyone was happy? What do we have now?? Waiting months and months for that 50-50 chance that the short sale will be approved...working with the overworked REO lister, if you are lucky or the REO robot if you are not...or maybe it's an equity … [Read more...]

Homeowners Suing for HAMP…But WHY???

The Making Home Affordable's Loan Affordable Program Has Left Too Many Homeowners Scratching Their Heads Checked out Mandelman Matters blog about the HAMP law suits. It's great that homeowners are getting there day in court, but I am wondering if it really matters? Let's face it, these loan modifications are not working. Even if you have your day in court and the judge tells the bank , " you are hereby ordered to reduce this man's payment", you are still underwater in your mortgage and most likley decades away from a break even point. You can sue, but why? Check out Mandelman's blog for the story. … [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...]