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BUYING A HOUSE? EVERYONE SEEMS TO THINK THIS IS THE TIME

“The idea is to make decisions and act on them — to decide what is important to accomplish, to decide how something can best be accomplished, to find time to work at it and to get it done.” ~ Karen Kakascik

home for saleThere has never been a better time to purchase a home than this year.  Prices are still down as are interest rates.  There are still foreclosures and short sales on the market that will be a great buy for those willing to put a little sweat equity into their home. Read the equity report by clicking on the link below then take a look at the why buy now.
         Equity Report          Why Buy Now?

3 REASONS TO LIST YOU HOME WITH A LOCAL AGENT.

3 REASONS TO LIST YOU HOME WITH A LOCAL AGENT.

“Always desire to learn something useful.Sophocles

During my daily reading, I came across this piece that I found to be good advice. Enjoy!

3 reasons to list home with a local agent.

SHORT SALES – WHAT ARE THEY?

“Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.” – William James

First of all, a short sale is not short!  For the general public, that is a misnomer, but for a bank that is an accurate statement.  You see, a short sale falls short of what is owed.  For example: in 2005 you purchased a lovely 4 bedroom, 3 bath home on 10 acres for $425,000.00.  Suddenly this year you lost your job and decided it was best to unload the home and go back and live with mom and dad.   You hired an appraiser – good move on your part to do that up front – and couldn’t believe what you read when you saw the appraiser’s report.  “It’s worth how much now?”  Say it isn’t so.   There isn’t enough equity in the home to do anything with and your thinking -“How am I supposed to come up with over $125,000.00 to give to the bank, just so I can sell?”.

You can negotiate you loan and try to get the payments lowered or you can try to sell for as much as you can and hope the bank will not hold you responsible for the deficiency.  Lot’s of luck! Nowadays most banks want everything they can get and they will bleed you dry.  Have you seen all the new banks going up around town.  Not just little structures but Big, MONUMENTAL, BUILDINGS.

I often wonder if all the money they make goes back into building these large structures.

Anyway, some banks are trying to help the homeowners  – a little late, but I guess it’s better late than never.  These banks are giving incentives to the homeowner to sell. The banks are not just asking anyone to sell, they are contacting people who are in imminent danger of losing their home to foreclosure. These incentives are:

  • Funds for relocating in the amount of a percentage of your unpaid balance.
  • Bank paid for appraisal
  • Closing costs paid by the bank
  • No deficiency judgement for the unpaid balance of the mortgage.

Pretty sweet deal, if I do say so myself.  This is a great deal not just for the seller, but also for the buyer because the prices are very competitive. I have 4 of these short sales myself.  The only catch is they go on the market for 120 days and if they don’t sell in that amount of time they get foreclosed on.

So, if you know anyone looking for a great deal on a well-kept home in Gainesville, FL, please contact me utilizing the “Contact me” sheet on the tab above.

ARE YOUR UTILITY BILLS SKY HIGH? CHECK YOUR R-VALUES

ARE YOUR UTILITY BILLS SKY HIGH? CHECK YOUR R-VALUES
“A man’s life is what his thoughts make it.”  – Marcus Aurelius
I recently overheard a couple at a hardware store exchange words as they peered down over a massive pile of insulation marked with various R-factors. “Just what IS an R-factor?, queried the woman. “Well, it has to do with how well the insulation does its job—so I guess an R-factor is kind of like the home’s “utility I.Q.”

It’s an interesting analogy since insulation does make your home smarter where utility bills are concerned. But unfortunately, many people don’t properly upgrade the insulation in their home when and where they should. And, in warmer climates, home owners often sidestep the importance of proper insulation all together. How can you gauge if your home is properly insulated and how can it potentially cut hundreds of dollars annually off your utility bills?

The R-factor, simply put, is the measurement of how well insulation resists (thus, the “R”) heat flow. The higher the R-value, the better the insulating power. Heat (which is a form of energy) tends to gravitate towards cooler areas in the home (ie. the attic, the walls, the crawl spaces.) That’s why it makes the most sense to have these areas with ample, high-efficiency insulation.

But insulation isn’t just for controlling heat. Resistance works in reverse where cool air is concerned, keeping the warm air from flowing into spaces you’re trying to keep cool. That’s why home owners in warm climates need to know their home’s R-factors in order to keep a lid on their air conditioning bills.
What R-values are considered standard and how do they vary from climate to climate? Manufacturers clearly mark the R-value on the types of insulation they produce. Home owners can often use various types of insulation together to obtain a high R-value. (An example of this is hard-to-access exterior walls where insulation is blown in on top of existing insulation.) Standard R-values differ based on what part of the home you’re trying to insulate. For example, since the attic is the biggest area for energy loss, colder climates require values ranging from R-38 to R-49. But in the South, R-19 in the attic should be ample.

Most local building codes require an R-value of R-19 for exterior walls. But if a home is built using 2 x 6 studs, there’s enough space in the wall cavity to insulate up to a value of R-21.

A frequent cold air leak can be where the house meets the foundation. In fact, you can lose up to 20% of your home’s heating/cooling energy from the foundation area in an non-insulated or poorly insulated home. That’s why it’s important to insulate around the area where the house meets the foundation, not just in the basement walls.

Just because insulation is thick doesn’t mean it has a high R-value. Many manufacturers are now producing higher R-value in fiber glass products by merely increasing the density while keeping the thickness the same. Today you might see R-15 insulation in a wall where R-13 was previously the max due to physical constraints. The efficiency has changed while the physical size of the insulation remains the same.

The bottom line is that if your utility bills are calling “Uncle”, it’s high time you review the R-values in your home. Like the man at the hardware store said, they’re your home’s “utility I.Q.”

WAYS TO AVOID FORECLOSURE

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WAYS TO AVOID FORECLOSURE

If your home is at risk of foreclosure, you don’t have to panic. There are many ways to ease the difficult situation, and one may be right for you.

This country has seen a recent spike in foreclosures and defaults. As a result, in addition to new legislature, lenders have been more willing to work with distressed borrowers to help keep them in their homes.

If you or someone you know is in this unfortunate situation or may be soon, now is the time to act. Click on the following article titled  “Ways To Avoid Foreclosure”   for an explanation about  the ins and outs of foreclosure, how you can avoid it and what your various options are.

You don’t have to be the next victim of foreclosure. There is help available—if you know where to look.  I have been trained in short sales and if selling is your best option, I utilize the services of a lawyer who does not charge the seller for her services.  Why not do something before it’s too late!

To read the article just click on the red words above. Once there you can save it to your computer or print it for future use.

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