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Archive for the ‘Home Buyers Guide’ Category

Feb
25

Nix the neutrals: Decor to make a new home your own

(BPT) – When selling a house, the mantra for most is neutral, neutral, neutral. To help potential new owners envision themselves moving in, real estate experts remind sellers to de-personalize their homes. That means removing family photos and mementos and replacing favorite color schemes with more vanilla shades and hues. So as a new homeowner, how do you begin to de-neutralize your new house to make it your new home?

Color your world

Choose colors that reflect your personality

Choose colors that reflect your personality

It’s a pretty safe bet that as the previous homeowners were preparing to sell, they went through the house and repainted with shades of beige or gray. While nice for an open house, these colors can be a little impersonal. It’s also likely the homeowners didn’t invest in the highest quality paint, saving that money for their new home. Therefore, one of the best ways to make your mark is by giving rooms a fresh coat of paint.

Choose colors that reflect your personality and style, and don’t be afraid to select bolder hues. Darker, more vibrant colors work well, especially for accent walls or rooms that could use some drama, like your guest bath.

Spend the money on a premium paint to ensure you see excellent hide (the paint’s ability to conceal the color under it) and coverage (how far you can paint with a gallon). Accolade Interior Paint + Primer from Pratt & Lambert is a good option. Not only can Accolade be tinted to any one of Pratt & Lambert’s lush colors, but the paint is also washable, durable and easy to maintain so it lasts until you’re ready to change colors.

Treat your windows well

When it comes to the floors, most real estate agents advise their clients to replace carpeting before the house goes on the market, particularly if it’s worn or on the more colorful side. As a result, you can hold off on the expense of putting in new carpet and instead look at window treatments.

Once you paint, the blinds, curtains or cornice boards that were part of the open house staging efforts may not fit in with your decor. Consider the function you need from window treatments. Do you need to create privacy as well as style? Is blocking light essential, like in a bedroom, or would sheer drapes be an option? Will the treatments be used in a child’s room, making cordless blinds important? Read more…

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May
07

Dangerous home buying pitfalls…Myths Revealed!

Having been a full-time professional Realtor® for over 25 years,  I have seen many home buyers get wrong advice and basically end up completely stressed out, disappointed and upset because they didn’t make the right decisions.

I hope that by outlining some key points below, you will benefit from my many years of experience and as a result, end up  having a smooth and rewarding home buying experience!

Selecting a buyer’s agent:
Unless you completely luck out when you call on a home and get that 1 great agent out of hundreds…you better do your homework!

Buying a home should be a happy time not a stressful one.

Buying a home should be a happy time not a be a stressful experience!

The complexities of today’s home buying processes should not be taken lightly and quite frankly, the captain at the helm of your ship needs to have many years of experience and be HIGHLY QUALIFIED. Anything less than that and your ship may just sink before you pull into port.

So, select your agent wisely! I have been selling homes for many years in communities from Dearborn, Canton, Plymouth, Northville and Novi to downriver communities like Allen Park, Southgate and Taylor Michigan (and many communities in-between). I feel that I’am “highly qualified” and have the knowledge and expertise you’ll need throughout your home buying process.

My friend/relative is a real estate agent:
Honestly, I have never seen people taken advantage of more or get the worst deals more than when I have seen someone work with a real estate agent just because they are a friend or family member. Not to mention some of the strains on relationships I have seen unfold! Read more…

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Feb
19

Free Money For Qualified Michigan Homebuyers

Can you think of anyone that would like to receive $3,000 or $5,000 FREE Money from the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) to use towards the purchase of a home? If you do, please forward this blog post to them so they can learn about and benefit from this limited time program.

In a nutshell, Michigan has received several million dollars for the purpose of creating a Homeowner Protection Fund. A portion of these funds were appropriated by the Legislature to MSHDA for what equates to a FREE Money situation for qualified home buyers…

  • Qualified homebuyers are eligible for grants up to $3,000 to use towards a purchase of a single family, owner occupied home.
  • Qualified active military members and veterans are eligible for grants up to $5,000.

The allotted time to take advantage of this program is limited as grant money may run out at any time. (available on a first come, first serve basis)

For more information about this great money saving opportunity Contact Steve Hatfield or Vicki Maule today.

If you are in the market to Buy a home or if you are planning to Sell a home or real estate in Dearborn MI, Dearborn Heights, Garden City, Westland, Redford, Livonia, Plymouth, Canton, Northville, Novi, Farmington, Allen Park, Taylor or any one of the other Detroit Michigan west side suburbs, Contact Steve Hatfield or Vicki Maule today.

Visit my web site at: www.DearbornHomes.com for complete and in-depth information about Buying or Selling a home or real estate in the Dearborn Michigan area or any one of the other Detroit Michigan west side suburbs.

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Jun
09

5 rules to buy a foreclosure or short sale with confidence

(ARA) – Buyers are still clamoring for Dearborn Michigan area real estate deals in this turbulent market. Foreclosures and short sales offer some of the best bargains, but also have a higher risk level. Still, more than four in five adults think foreclosures and short sales can be good deals, according to a recent American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) survey.

Some analysts say the rebound has begun and home prices may rise by the end of 2012. This means now may be buyers’ last chance to take advantage of affordable properties and low interest rates. If you want to score a bargain before the housing market recovers, you’ll need to follow a few rules to invest with certainty.

Make a wise investment by adhering to these five rules while shopping distressed properties:

Rule 1: Position yourself for success
Before starting your search, get preapproved for a mortgage so when a good deal presents itself, you’re positioned to submit a bid right away to be the first offer on the bank’s desk. Work with an experienced real estate agent who can help guide you through the daunting sea of foreclosures and short sales. Bidding can be complicated and time-consuming, especially when working with a home sale needing bank approval. A good agent will know how to navigate through the paperwork and red tape.

Rule 2: Do your research
A real estate agent can help you with research, but it’s wise to do some on your own. Are there any undisclosed liens on the property? Is the seller behind on his property taxes? What permit records does the city have on file? This information will be critical during decision-making. Work with your agent to ensure the contract requires any delinquent taxes, liens or assessments will be paid prior to you taking ownership of the property.

Rule 3: Always get a home inspection
Eighty-four percent of adults surveyed by ASHI said they would be more likely to purchase a distressed property after a home inspection has determined its condition.

A home inspection gives you the confidence to move forward with your purchase because you’ll have as much knowledge as possible about the condition of the property. An inspector will visually examine the condition of the home’s roof, attic and insulation, foundation, basement and structural components, as well as interior plumbing and electrical systems. Be sure to find an ASHI-Certified Inspector (ACI) to ensure your inspector is experienced, as many states have minimal licensing requirements. To find a local ACI, use ASHI’s “Find an Inspector” tool on www.ASHI.org.

Rule 4: Budget for repairs
When looking at short sales and foreclosures, remember price is only one aspect to consider. A home will almost always require some type of repair. After receiving your inspection report, you can estimate costs associated with necessary repairs, maintenance or energy-efficient improvements.

Rule 5: Assess the neighborhood
Location should be a top consideration when purchasing real estate, and in a tough housing market, it’s even more important. A home has limited worth if it’s located in a less desirable neighborhood. High foreclosure rates can turn a once-desirable neighborhood into one many might likely avoid. These locations are likely to see a slower recovery than more populated or favorable areas less affected by the economy. Make location as important as price when making a purchase decision.

Protect yourself with knowledge and expert advice to make a confident, smart decision about your largest investment.

If you are in the market to Buy a home or if you are planning to Sell a home or real estate in Dearborn MI, Dearborn Heights, Garden City, Westland, Redford, Livonia, Plymouth, Canton, Northville, Novi, Farmington, Allen Park, Taylor or any one of the other Detroit Michigan west side suburbs, Contact Steve Hatfield today.

Visit my web site at: www.DearbornHomes.com for complete and in-depth information about Buying or Selling a home or real estate in the Dearborn Michigan area or any one of the other Detroit Michigan west side suburbs.

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Mar
15

Bank Foreclosures / Short Sales: Bargains or Moneypits?

Every Dearborn MI area home and real estate buyer looking to purchase in today’s real estate market will need to decide if they would consider buying a bank foreclosed home, or a home that is being sold as a short sale. Both of those options can have advantages and disadvantages. For many home buyers, the disadvantages greatly outweigh any advantages and they end up purchasing a home offered as a traditional sale.

In addition, you need to keep in mind that bank owned properties (foreclosed homes) and short sales are not the only good deals out there. In fact, when all is said and done, sometimes the bank owned homes will cost you more than a buying a home that is already in move-in condition.real estate dearborn mi

Bank Owned Homes / REO / Foreclosures / Foreclosed Homes
These are homes that someone purchased, defaulted on the mortgage meaning they didn’t make their payments and now a bank owns the property.

Advantage: Price may be less than other homes in the area
Disadvantages: Might become a “money pit” due to the following…

  • No utilities on: Foreclosed homes usually do not have gas, electric, and/or water services on – sometimes this has lead to dangerous mold growth. You may be required to turn the utilities on and put them in your name before you close on a bank owned / foreclosed home.
  • Stripped out: You’ll often find that these homes do not have a furnace, central air unit, plumbing, fixtures, ductwork, kitchen cabinets, electric service, toilets, hot water heater, siding, etc. have often been stripped from the house
  • Poor condition: Many foreclosures are extremely dirty, have holes in walls / trash strewn about, broken/missing windows and doors
    Water damage due to leaks, water left running, sump pumps not operational
  • Other damage: Structural issues and/or other damage to property due to neglect and exposure to elements
    The old adage of you get what you pay for is most often true with bank owned homes / foreclosures. Those that need a great deal of work Read more…

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Mar
08

I really love this house but I want to keep looking!

As strange as the title of this column may appear, it is a familiar refrain these days. Buyers are shown a house that is just perfect for them, and after seeing it, they ask their Realtor® to show them more homes. This is a recent phenomenon. In the past, when the buyers found the right house for them, they sat down and made an offer. From my conversations with other local Dearborn area Realtors, I have concluded that home buyers are acting this way for one of two reasons:

A BETTER BUY MAYBE JUST AROUND THE CORNER:
Some buyers today feel that they should continue looking at other properties because there may be a better deal around and they don’t want to miss it. Although this is a possibility, this philosophy could be taken to an extreme. Theoretically, the best decision is not to buy at all. This would allow you to always be available to look at more homes. While continuing your search, it is possible that someone else could purchase the home that was right for you.

IT’S HARD TO MAKE A DECISION:
The decision to buy a certain home is a big one. Sometimes, wanting to see more homes is a way to avoid making a decision. It is possible to feel confident when buying. Here are some of the steps that can improve confidence:

1. Be sure that this property has the basic features that you need.

2. Ask your Realtor to provide examples of similar Dearborn area homes that have recently sold and their selling prices.

3. Make an offer on the property conditional on a satisfactory home inspection by a qualified home inspector.

4. After taking the logical steps listed above, buy with your heart.

If you are going to invest your hard-earned money on this house, it should be a place that you want to come home to.

ADVICE: When you find the right property, you will feel it. Listen to your instincts. You know yourself and your tastes better than anyone else.

If you are planing to sell your Dearborn Michigan area home or if you are in the market to Buy a home or real estate in Dearborn MI, Dearborn Heights, Garden City, Westland, Redford, Livonia, Plymouth, Canton, Northville, Novi, Farmington, Allen Park, Taylor or any one of the other Detroit Michigan west side suburb, Contact Steve Hatfield today.

Visit my web site at: www.DearbornHomes.com for complete and in-depth information about Buying or Selling a home or real estate in the Dearborn Michigan area or any one of the other Detroit Michigan west side suburbs.Visit www.DearbornHomes.com

Original article written by: Tom Ervin
Image by: Vichie81

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