Real Estate Blog - Blog Archive: August, 2015

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August 2015

There are 9 blog entries for August 2015.

Anatomy of a Jumbo Mortgage Loan

Back in 1950, the average square footage of a single family home was around 980 square feet.  Today, many apartments are larger than that.  As of 2010, the average size of a single family home was nearing 2,500 square feet according to the National Association of Home Builders.

Big houses are no longer just for celebrities and big shot business people.  But with big houses come big loans, and the lenders on these big loans play by a slightly different set of rules than when they are dealing with a normal “conforming” loan.

If you are considering up-sizing to a larger home and you don’t plan on paying cash for the house, here are the things you need to know.

First of all, what is jumbo?

The word jumbo is a

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What is not easier thanks to the internet?  Communicating with virtually anyone in the world or purchasing just about any consumer good is just a few keystrokes and clicks away.  Even finding local listings for houses is easy.

 But buying houses isn’t.

 For most people, a house is the largest investment they will ever make.  Not to mention the fact that when most people purchase a home, they plan to live there for an extended period of time.  For those reasons, it is absolutely critical that prospective buyers get to see the homes they are looking to buy in person.  No matter how electronic our world gets, open houses are not going away any time soon.

 Here are the steps you should take to get ready for your open house.

Don’t start without a

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Reno/Sparks Market Report: July 2015

 Reno/Sparks Association of Realtors has released their monthly market report for July, 2015.  The report contains valuable information regarding current trends and conditions for the area’s real estate market.  If you are planning on buying, selling, or if you simply want to learn more, the Reno Sparks Tahoe Homes team can help you to break down the report.

 Market Pulse

 As the summer buying and selling season continues, the housing market has stayed almost as hot as the temperatures outside.  It is still very much a seller’s market as homes continue to sell quickly, even at increasing prices.

Potential sellers may be catching on, though.  Although buying rates are still high, both the months’ supply

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General Contractors: Doing It Yourself vs. Hiring a Professional

 Framers, drywall installers, HVAC professionals, painters, plumbers, electricians…  Whether you are building a home or making renovations to an existing one, you will need the services of an army of contractors and professionals.

 No army is effective without leadership.  You have two options… act as your own general contractor to manage all of the other sub-contractors or hire a professional to manage the project.

 General contractors can be very expensive, so it is often appealing to people to act as their own in order to cut costs.  But is it worth the headache and responsibility that comes with it?

 What does it really take?

 In short, acting as your own general

1,551 Views, 6 Comments.

Need to Sell Fast? 5 Quick Home Staging Tips

 Maybe you’ve landed a new job out of state and you need to sell your home to move on short notice.  Maybe you found your dream home elsewhere and are simply looking to make a quick transition.  Or perhaps you own a rental property for which your new tenants-to-be fell through and you need to find new ones asap.

 In order to sell or lease quickly you could put your house on the market for a lower price than it’s worth and lose value and wealth in the process.


 Instead of losing money, how about trying to stage the house to highlight its best features and selling points?  Here’s a few quick ways to do just that.

 Brighten it up

 Light gives rooms the appearance of being bigger, newer and

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The Truth about Extra Mortgage Payments

 You have a mortgage.  You owe the bank a couple hundred thousand dollars, and you have 30 years to pay it off.  Why would you want to pay any extra each month, when it’s going to take so long to pay off anyway?  That is crazy, right?

 Well, maybe it depends.  How much extra are we talking about?  And when?

 Most people think of a mortgage as a lump sum of debt that they owe.  One dollar extra paid now is the same as spending that dollar in the last month of the life of the mortgage, right?  Wouldn’t you rather spend that dollar right now on something fun and let your mortgage run its course?

 You shouldn’t.  You can save yourself a huge amount of time and money by making a significant extra contribution

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Get Rented: What You Need to Do Between Tenants

One of the most important parts of managing a rental property is finding tenants who will respect and take care of the property while they live in it.  Not finding the right tenants can cost you thousands of dollars in cleaning, maintenance and repairs.

 Even if you are saying goodbye to great tenants as they move on, you still need to get your property ready for the next tenants.  Giving someone a clean, well-maintained property to move into will help to keep them motivated to do their part in keeping the property in tip top shape. You might also want to consider making upgrades to increase the value of your rental property, but here are the essential things you need to do between tenants.


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Navigating the Alphabet Soup of Home Financing Options

 If you are looking to buy a home, you have probably discovered that there are many different financing options. Picking the lender and mortgage loan type that is right for you is critically important, yet it can be very confusing to navigate the alphabet soup of programs available.

 FHA, VA, USDA, NFCU... What do they all mean?  And who are those guys Fannie and Freddie?

Well, they are not guys, actually. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are large government-sponsored institutions that purchase mortgage loans from other lenders, pool them all together, and sell securities on them.

 And the numerous programs all have their own unique purpose. Let’s take a look at what the most common ones mean.

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Do You Qualify?  What Mortgage Lenders Consider When Giving Loans

You have a good job.  You have saved enough money to make a down payment on a house.  You have even picked out the perfect neighborhood.

But uh-oh.  Your credit score is haunted by that car loan that you defaulted on a few years back.  And your credit score still has not recovered.

Mortgages are large loans.  It is only fair that banks and other lending institutions thoroughly research your ability to pay your mortgage before they grant you a loan.  After all, it was massive amounts of defaults on home loans that triggered the financial crisis several years ago.

So what do the lending institutions look for?

How high does your credit score need to be?

Credit is perhaps the

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