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Selling a Home

10 Ways To Make Your Home Irresistible At An Open House

Put fresh or silk flowers in principal rooms for a touch of color.Add a new shower curtain, fresh towels, and new guest soaps to every bath.Set out potpourri or fresh baked goods for a homey smell.Set the table with pretty dishes and candles.Buy a fresh doormat with a clever saying.Take …

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6 Creative Ways To Afford A Home

If your income and savings are making homebuying a challenge, consider these options. Investigate local, state, and national downpayment assistance programs. These programs give loans or grants to cover all or part of your required downpayment. National programs include the Nehemiah program (http://www.getdownpayment.com) and the American Dream Downpayment Fund from …

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5 Reasons You Need A Realtor

A real estate transaction is complicated. In most cases, buying or selling a home requires disclosure forms, inspection reports, mortgage documents, insurance policies, deeds, and multi-page government-mandated settlement statements. A knowledgeable guide through this complexity can help you avoid delays or costly mistakes.Selling or buying a home is time consuming. …

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5 Things To Do Before You Sell

Get estimates from a reliable repairperson on items that need to be replaced soon, such as a roof or worn carpeting, for example. In this way, buyers will have a better sense of how much these needed repairs will affect their costs.Have a termite inspection to prove to buyers that …

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5 Ways To Speed Up Your Sale

Price it right. Set a price at the lower end of your propertys realistic price range.Get your house market-ready for at least two weeks before you begin showing it.Be flexible about showings. Its often disruptive to have a house ready to show on the spur of the moment, but the …

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7 Steps To Preparing For An Open House

Hire a cleaning service. A spotlessly clean home is essential; dirt will turn off a prospect faster than anything.Mow your lawn, and be sure toys and yard equipment are put away.Serve cookies, coffee, and soft drinks. It creates a welcoming touch. But be sure the kitchen has been cleaned up; …

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7 Terms To Watch For In A Purchase Contract

The closing date. See if the date the buyer wants to take title is reasonable for you.Date of possession. See if the date the buyer wants to move in is reasonable for you.The earnest money. Look for the largest earnest-money deposit possible; since it is forfeited if the buyer backs out, a large …

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Choose A Realtor To Sell Your Home

Once you’ve decide to sell your home, finding a REALTOR is the next step in the process. In making this important decision you should understand: Who is a REALTORHow to evaluate an agentWhat a REALTOR will do for youSelling on your own If youre not in a “must sell” situation …

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Moving Tips For Sellers

Give your forwarding address to the post office, usually two to four weeks ahead of the move.Notify your credit card companies, magazine subscriptions, and bank of the change of address.Develop a list of friends, relatives, and business colleagues who need to be notified of the move.Arrange to have utilities disconnected …

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Pricing Guidelines

Perhaps the most challenging aspect of selling a home is listing it at the correct price. It’s one of several areas where the assistance of a skilled real estate agent can more than pay for itself. Too High Can Be As Bad As Too Low If the listing price is …

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Seller’s Checklist

Notify your mortgage company immediately in writing that your house has been sold and you will need a payoff amount for your mortgage loanGather your receipted bills for taxes, water, sewer and civic association dues/feesNotify utilities when to read your metersNotify telephone companyNotify cable companyCancel any regular deliveries; i.e. newspaperNotify …

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Showing Your Home

Appointments When your home is to be shown, we will always attempt to make an appointment with you, giving you as much advance notice as possible. Being on Time for Appointments It is important to understand that sometimes Realtors cannot be at your home in the time frame that they …

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The Home Seller’s Guide To Success

Get the most for your house without the hassles Selling a home is a big decision and requires a lot of work. From getting the house ready to reviewing the escrow papers, our helpful guide will walk you through the process of selling your home. Plan/PrepareGet a REALTORSet the PriceMarket …

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Understanding Agency

Its important to understand what legal responsibilities your real estate salesperson has to you and to other parties in the transactions. Ask your salesperson to explain what type of agency relationship you have with him or her and with the brokerage company. Seller’s representative (also known as a listing agent or …

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What A Realtor Can Do For You

The REALTOR you work with could be one of your most valuable resources. Unlike many real estate agents who are simply licensed by their state to do business, REALTORS have taken additional steps to become members of the local board of REALTORS and have agreed to act under and adhere …

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What Is A Realtor?

A real estate agent is a REALTOR when he or she is a member of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS, The Voice for Real Estate — the world’s largest professional association. The term REALTOR is a registered collective membership mark that identifies a real estate professional who is a member …

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What Is Appraised Value?

It’s an objective opinion of value, but it’s not an exact science so appraisals may differ. For buying and selling purposes, appraisals are usually based on market valuewhat the property could probably be sold for. Other types of value include insurance value, replacement value, and assessed value for property tax …

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What To Keep From Your Closing

The Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) statement. This form, sometimes called a HUD 1 statement, itemizes all the costs associated with the closing. Youll need this for income tax purposes and when you sell the home.The Truth in Lending Statement summarizes the terms of your mortgage loan.The mortgage and …

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Selling Your Home

Seller Services Rest assured we will do everything we possibly can to sell your home as quickly as possible at your asking price. Our service include: Eye-catching “for sale” signs to ensure that your home is noticed no matter what the hour.Exterior flyers designed to capture the highlights of your …

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Handouts For Converting Fsbos: Tips On How To Price Your Home

REALTORS: This handout is meant to help you convert FSBOs. You may personalize and customize this handout as needed. Consider comparables. What have other homes in your neighborhood sold for recently? How do they compare to yours in terms of size, upkeep, and amenities?Consider competition. How many other houses are …

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What A Realtor Can Do For You

The REALTOR you work with could be one of your most valuable resources. Unlike many real estate agents who are simply licensed by their state to do business, REALTORS have taken additional steps to become members of the local board of REALTORS and have agreed to act under and adhere …

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Refinancing Tips

10 Questions To Ask Your Lender

What are the most popular mortgage loans you offer?Which type of mortgage plan do you think would be best for us? Why?Are your rates, terms, fees, and closing costs negotiable?Will I have to buy private mortgage insurance? If so how much will it cost and how long will it be …

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5 Factors That Decide Your Credit Score

Credit scores range between 200 and 800. Scores above 620 are considered desirable for obtaining a mortgage. These factors will affect your score. Your payment history. Whether you paid credit card obligations on time.How much you owe. Owing a great deal of money on numerous accounts can indicate that you …

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8 Ways To Improve Your Credit

Credit scores, along with your overall income and debt, are a big factor in determining if you’ll qualify for a loan and what loan terms you’ll be able to qualify for. Check for and correct errors in your credit report. Mistakes happen, and you could be paying for someone else’s …

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Choices That Will Affect Your Loan

Mortgage term. Mortgages are generally available at 15-, 20-, or 30-year terms. The longer the term, the lower the monthly payment if the same amount is borrowed. However, you pay more interest overall if you borrow for a longer term.Fixed or adjustable interest rates. A fixed rate allows you to …

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Owning a Home

10 Questions To Ask Your Condo Board

Before you buy, contact the condo board with the following questions. In the process, youll learn how responsiveand organizedits members are. What percentage of units is owner-occupied? What percentage is tenant-occupied? Generally, the higher the percentage of owner-occupied units, the more marketable the units will be at resale.What covenants, bylaws, …

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10 Ways To Make Your House More Salable

Get rid of clutter. Throw out or file stacks of newspapers and magazines. Pack away most of your small decorative items. Store out-of-season clothing to make closets seem roomier. Clean out the garage.Wash your windows and screens to let more light into the interior.Keep everything extra clean. Wash fingerprints from …

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12 Tips For Hiring A Remodeling Contractor

Get at least three written estimates.Get references and call to check on the work. If possible, go by and visit earlier jobs.Check with the local Chamber of Commerce or Better Business Bureau for complaints.Be sure that the contract states exactly what is to be done and how change orders will …

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20 Low-cost Ways To Spruce Up Your Home

Make your home more appealing for potential buyers with these quick and easy tips. Trim bushes so they dont block windows and cut down on light.Buy a new doormat.Put a pot of bright flowers (or a small evergreen in winter) on your porch.Put new doorknobs on your doors.Put a fresh …

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5 Things To Understand About Homeowners Insurance

Look for exclusions to coverage. For example, most insurance policies do not cover flood or earthquake damage as a standard item. These coverages must be bought separately.Look for dollar limitations on claims. Even if you are covered for a risk, there may a limit on how much the insurer will pay. For …

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6 Items To Have On Hand For The New Homeowners

Owners manuals for items left in the house.Warranties for any items left in the house.A list of local service providersthe best dry cleaner, yard service, etc.Garage door opener.Extra sets of house keys.Code to burglar alarm and phone number of monitoring service if not discontinued.

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7 Reasons To Own Your Own Home

Tax breaks. The U.S. Tax Code lets you deduct the interest you pay on your mortgage, property taxes you pay, and some of the costs involved in buying your home.Gains. Between 1998 and 2002, national home prices increased at an average of 5.4 percent annually. And while there’s no guarantee …

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Does Moving Up Make Sense?

Answer these questions to help you decide whether moving up makes sense. How much equity do you have in your home? Look at your annual mortgage statement or call your lender to find out. Usually, you dont build up much equity in the first few years of paying a mortgage, …

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Hidden Home Defects To Watch For

No home is flawless, but certain physical problems can be expensive. Watch for: Water leaks. Look for stains on ceilings and near the baseboards, especially in basements or attics.Shifting foundations. Look for large cracks along the home’s foundation.Drainage. Look for standing water, either around the foundation of the home of …

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Home Improvement

There are Two Reasons For Pursuing Major Home Improvement Projects: Just Want To Do It – You want some new features in a home to improve your family’s quality of life, but you don’t want to leave your current home.Really Need To Do It – You want to make your home more …

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How Comprehensive Is Your Home Warranty?

Check your home warranty policy to see which of the following items are covered. Also check to see if the policy covers the full replacement cost of an item. PlumbingElectrical SystemsWater HeaterFurnaceHeating DuctsWater PumpDishwasherStove/Cooktop/OvensMicrowaveRefrigeratorWasher/DryerSwimming Pool (may be optional)

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How High Tech Is Your Home?

If the latest technology or entertainment options are important in your new home, add the following questions to your buyer’s checklist. Are there enough jacks in every room for cable TV and high-speed Internet hookups?Are there enough telephone extensions or jacks?Is the home prewired for a home theater or multi-room …

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Keeping On Top Of Condition

Just like any other showroom, your home needs to appear in “perfect” condition every day! That’s difficult and we understand. But a home remaining unsold on the market may cost more than keeping it tidy in the short term. Condition is one important way in which a seller says, “I …

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Keeping Your Home Playground Safe

As kids head back to school, you’re bound to notice the kindergartner whose wrist is in a cast after falling from the monkey bars. But it’s not just on the schoolyard and neighborhood park that injuries occur – in fact, more deaths to children occur in backyard playgrounds than on …

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Remodeling That Pays

Upgrading your home is always appealing, but which enhancements really get you a good return for your money when it’s time to sell? The 2003 Cost vs. Value Report by Remodeling magazine and REALTOR Magazinehas the answer. To see the complete article, visit http://www.realtor.org/rmomag.NSF/pages/costvaluedec03. 20032002VarianceBathroom RemodelMidrange89.3%87.5%1.8%Upscale92.691.01.6Bathroom AdditionMidrange95.094.20.08Upscale84.381.42.9Major Kitchen RemodelMidrange74.966.68.3Upscale79.679.8-0.2Master SuiteMidrange76.475.11.3Upscale76.976.80.1Family RoomMidrange80.679.51.1DeckMidrange104.2N/A*N/A*Basement RemodelMidrange79.378.70.6Siding ReplacementMidrange98.179.119.0Window …

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The Pros And Cons Of Condos

Condominiums and townhouses offer an affordable option to single-family homes in most areas. But consider these facts before you buy. Storage. Some condos have storage lockers, but usually there are no attics or basements to store belongings.Outdoor space. Yards and outdoor areas are usually smaller in condos, so if you …

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Tips For Holding A Yard Sale

Hold a yard sale to reduce the clutter in your home and get rid of items you dont want to move. Check with your city government to see if you need a permit or license.See if neighbors want to participate and have a block sale to attract more visitors.Advertise. Put …

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Tips For Using Color In Your Home

As an increasing number of homeowners remodel, revamp, and spruce up their homes, color remains a key ingredient for creating moods, feelings of openness and coziness, and a way of conveying expression and personality.Home color trends constantly change, and remodeling experts say that color plays a larger role today than …

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Types Of Home Inspections

Structural and Mechanical Inspection This is the most common inspection requested by the buyer.This inspection determines if the major mechanical and structural components of your home are performing their intended functions.The inspections should take place as soon as possible in order to negotiate repairs early in the process.A typical inspection …

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What Your Home Inspection Should Cover

Siding: Look for dents or bucklingFoundations: Look for cracks or water seepageExterior Brick: Look for cracked bricks or mortar pulling away from bricksInsulation: Look for condition, adequate rating for climateDoors and Windows: Look for loose or tight fits, condition of locks, condition of weatherstrippingRoof: Look for age, conditions of flashing, …

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Home Inspections

A fresh coat of paint or new carpeting may disguise serious flaws. That’s why you want to make sure a professional inspects your new home. It’s important to have a qualified inspector completely inspect the home you are planning to buy. If you by-pass the inspection and later discover that …

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Mortgage Tips

10 Things A Lender Needs From You

W-2 forms or business tax return forms if youre self-employed for the last two or three years for every person signing the loan.Copies of one or more months of pay stubs from every person signing the loan.Copies of two to four months of bank or credit union statements for both …

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10 Ways To Lower Your Homeowners Insurance Costs

Raise your deductible. If you can afford to pay more toward a loss that occurs, your premiums will be lower.Buy your homeowners and auto policies from the same company. Youll usually qualify for a discount. But make sure that the savings really yields the lowest price.Make your home less susceptible to damage. Keep …

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Types Of Mortgages

Fortunately for buyers, there are a variety of mortgages to choose from. It is in your best interest to investigate each of them to determine which is the best for your situation. You probably won’t qualify for all of them. In fact, you may only qualify for one. But if …

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Understanding Capital Gains In Real Estate

When you sell a stock, you owe taxes on your gainthe difference between what you paid for the stock and what you sold it for. The same is true with selling a home (or a second home), but there are some special considerations. HOW TO CALCULATE GAIN In real estate, …

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Why Should I Get Pre-Approved For A Mortgage Before I Go House Shopping?

When considering the purchase of a home, many people start with looking at photos of homes online and then either go to open houses or call a real estate agent to show them houses. That would appear to be the correct first steps – but it’s not. For most people …

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3 Tips For Finding a TRUSTED Lender

Social Proof Look at Online Reviews.  Really read them.  Don’t you want to know what other homebuyers are saying about someone you’re thinking about using for the largest loan you may take out in your life? Get A Referral Ask someone you know and trust if they worked with a …

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Buying a Home

10 Questions To Ask A Home Inspector

What are your qualifications? Are you a member of the American Association of Home Inspectors?Do you have a current license? Inspectors are not required to be licensed in every state.How many inspections of properties such as this do you do each year?Do you have a list of past clients I …

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10 Steps To Prepare For Homeownership

Decide how much home you can afford. Generally, you can afford a home equal in value to between two and three times your gross income.Develop a wish list of what you’d like your home to have. Then prioritize the features on your list.Select three or four neighborhoods you’d like to …

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10 Things To Take The Trauma Out Of Homebuying

Find a real estate professional who’s simpatico. Homebuying is not only a big financial commitment, but also an emotional one. It’s critical that the practitioner you choose is both skilled and a good fit with your personality.Remember, there’s no “right” time to buy, any more than there’s a right time …

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10 Tips For First-time Homebuyers

Be picky, but don’t be unrealistic. There is no perfect home.Do your homework before you start looking. Decide specifically what features you want in a home and which are most important to you.Get your finances in order. Review your credit report and be sure you have enough money to cover …

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5 Common First-time Homebuyer Mistakes

They don’t ask enough questions of their lender and miss out on the best deal.They don’t act quickly enough to make a decision and someone else buys the house.They don’t find the right real estate professional who is willing to help you through the homebuying process.They don’t do enough to …

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5 Property Tax Questions You Need To Ask

What is the assessed value of the property? Note that assessed value is generally less than market value. Ask to see a recent copy of the seller’s tax bill to help you determine this information.How often are properties reassessed and when was the last reassessment done? Generally taxes jump most …

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5 Things To Understand About Title Insurance

It protects your ownership right to your home both from fraudulent claims against your ownership and from mistakes made in earlier sales, such as mistake in the spelling of a persons name or an inaccurate description of the property.Its a one-time cost usually based on the price of the property.Its …

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8 Steps To Getting Your Finances In Order

Develop a family budget. Instead of budgeting what you’d like to spend, use receipts to create a budget for what you actually spent over the last six months. One advantage of this approach is that it factors in unexpected expenses, such as car repairs, illnesses, etc., as well as predictable …

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Advice For First-time Buyers

Buying a home is a major step in anyone’s life. You should prepare yourself by making a few preliminary decisions to determining what you want and can afford. Following the steps below can make your life much easier. Tips on Buying a Home 1. Determine How Much You Can Afford …

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Common Closing Costs For Buyers

The lender must disclose a good faith estimate of all settlement costs. A check to cover your closing costs will probably have to be a cashiers check. The title company or other entity conducting the closing will tell you the required amount for: DownpaymentLoan origination feesPoints, or loan discount fees, …

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Dispelling The Myths That May Be Keeping You From Owning A Home

Are you short that 20 percent down payment? Have you been in a job less than five years? Is that out-of-control college credit card frenzy years ago keeping you from even thinking about applying for a home loan? If any of these scenarios ring true for you, it doesn’t mean …

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Great Reasons To Invest In Real Estate

According to recent statistics published by the U.S. Census Bureau, 75% of multifamily investors are over the age of 45. Over half of these (51.6%) own less than five units, and they earned approximately 31% of their income from ownership of rental properties. These statistics may surprise you, but some …

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How To Pick A Realtor

When selecting an agent keep in mind that you will most likely have a lot of interaction with this person. On a personal level you should look for someone that you are comfortable with. On a professional level you should look for an agent who has the credentials to do …

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Moving Checklist

Careful preparationand organization will make the move go smoothly. First take care of the detailsthat do not require disrupting the household and thatoften get left until later. Gettingthe small tasksout of the way will help to make themental and physical work ahead less hectic. Two months prior to Moving Day …

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Questions To Ask When Choosing A Realtor

How long have you been in residential real estate sales? Is it your full-time job? (While experience is no guarantee of skill, real estate, like many other professions, is mostly learned on the job.)What designations do you hold? (Designations, such as GRI and CRS, which require that real estate professionals …

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The Benefits Of Using A Buyer’s Agent

A Buyer’s Representative Will: Evaluate the specific needs and wants of the buyer and locate properties that fit those specifications.Assist the buyer in determining the amount that they can afford (prequalify), and show properties in that price range and locale.Assist in viewing properties — accompany the buyer on the showings, …

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Tips For Finding The Perfect Neighborhood

The neighborhood you choose can have a big impact on your lifestylesafety, available amenities, and convenience all play their part. Make a list of the activitiesmovies, health club, churchyou engage in regularly and stores you visit frequently. See how far you would have to travel from each neighborhood you’re considering …

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Tips For Packing Like A Pro

Develop a master to do list so you wont forget something critical.Sort and get rid of things you no longer want or need. Have a garage sale, donate to a charity, or recycle.Dont throw out everything. If your inclination is to just toss it, ask yourself how frequently you use …

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Tips On Buying In A Tight Market

Increase your chances of getting your dream house instead of losing it to another buyer, with these easy steps. Get prequalified for a mortgage. You’ll be able to make a firm commitment to buy and make your offer more desirable to the seller.Stay in close touch with your real estate …

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What Not To Overlook On A Final Walk-through

Be sure that: Repairs youve requested have been made. Obtain copies of paid bills and any related warranties.All items that were included in the sale pricedraperies, lighting fixturesare still there.Screens and storm windows are in place or stored.All appliances are operating.Intercom, doorbell, and alarm are operational.Hot water heater is working.HVAC …

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Who Represents You?

By John Adams One of the hot topics facing the world of real estate right now is the issue of agency. Some would have you believe that it really doesn’t affect you, the buyer, and that nothing much has changed. But they are wrong. The topic of agency is important …

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Why Use A Realtor?

All real estate licensees are not the same. Only real estate licensees who are members of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS are properly called REALTORS. They proudly display the REALTOR “” logo on the business card or other marketing and sales literature. REALTORS are committed to treat all parties to …

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10 Steps To Home Ownership

Systematic steps to help you buy your home The home-buying process doesn’t need to be scary. Our step-by-step guide will walk you through the process and answer your questions on what you should expect from your REALTOR, where to look for loans, and what to watch out for when closing …

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Marriage And A Mortgage – Why Newlyweds Should Say “I Do!” To Homeownership

It’s no secret, weddings are expensive! From the minute she gets that diamond on her finger, a bride-to-be will spend many stressful months planning her perfect wedding. Every second of free time will be spent preparing for the big day and opening the checkbook for yet another vendor. And while …

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Ready to get Started?

Are you ready to open the doors to your new home, make the right investment, or give yourself newfound freedom by refinancing? Absolute Home Mortgage is ready to guide you every step of the way. Get started with us by clicking the button below. Still have questions? Use the Contact form to the right.

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