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Buyers Category

Should You Rent or Buy a Home?

August 21st, 2013 Written By Carol Pawley

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While interest rates are still low and prices are starting to increase, is now the time to buy instead of rent? The answer is it depends.  Here are some main factors you should consider to help decide whether renting or owning a home is the right decision for you.

Basic Market Trends:

– You want avoid buying a house at the peak of a housing bubble.

– Use the “price-to-rent” ratio. This is a formula that takes into account the price of renting versus the cost of buying in your area (with many factors included) and gives you an idea of whether the market dynamics support buying or renting. If you are trying to evaluate this, look online for some handy calculators/charts/graphs that show you the price-to-rent ratio for your city.

– Interest rates for mortgages change over time and it’s always better to lock in a low interest rate if you can.

Your Financial Picture:

– Does your current financial picture put you in a strong position for home ownership? If not, then buying a house will not be a good idea no matter what the market trends indicate.

– To evaluate your finances and see if you’re ready for homeownership, you’ll need to sit down and look at all your financial accounts as well as your income and anticipation of future earnings (not to mention job security).

– Look at any debt you have and calculate how long it would take you to pay it off. If you have a lot of consumer debt and especially if you’re struggling to make your monthly payments, then this may not be a good time for you to buy. Homeownership is a big commitment. You also won’t be able to secure a good interest rate if your debt to income ratio is high.

– Think about any potential threats to your job and career before making the leap into homeownership.

How Much Do You Have Saved Up:

– Another important factor to consider is how much savings you have. Many home purchases require 10 or 20 percent as a down payment on a mortgage, and while there are programs for first-time home buyers and other ways to lower your down payment to 5 percent (or even 3 percent in some cases), that will increase your monthly payment because it will mean your total loan amount will be larger.

– If you have enough for a 20% down payment, you can feel more confident because (A) you’re more likely to be approved for a loan and (B) your monthly mortgage payments will be lower.

What Are Your Future Plans:

– It doesn’t make sense to buy a house if you plan to move in the next five years, because buying a house requires lots of fees and “closing costs” — these costs are unavoidable and can total up to 5% of the cost of the house or more.

– If you plan on living in the home for less than five years you won’t be able enjoy the financial benefits of homeownership, such as appreciation in your home’s value.

 

*Source ABCNews.com

 

Throughout the years I have helped many friends and clients purchase or sell property throughout Miami & the surrounding area.  If you are interested in purchasing or selling a home, please contact me as I can give some first-hand sound advice with no pressure.  Please send me an email at [email protected] or call me at  305-992-6188.
 
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Segovia Tower Foreclosure

July 30th, 2013 Written By Carol Pawley

A foreclosure in Segovia Tower just hit the market. Located at 600 Coral Way in Coral Gables, the unit has 3 beds, 3.5 baths with 3,949 sqft on the 9th floor. Features include one unit per floor, 10 ft ceilings, large covered terrace overlooking Granada Golf Course.

The asking price is $796,900 which is a steal.  I just sold the unit below last month for $1,200,000.

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I keep up to date on the market.  I make sure my clients are well informed so they make the best decisions when buying or selling their home. Please send me an email at [email protected] or call me at 305-992-6188 if you are interested in buying or selling a home in Miami or it’s surrounding areas.
 
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New Listing: Coconut Grove Waterfront Condo

July 29th, 2013 Written By Carol Pawley

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I just listed an amazing condo located in Pelican Reef West at 1638 S. Bayhore Ct. The 3 bedroom 2.5 bath condo has incredible unobstructed views of Biscayne Bay and comes with a deeded deep water dock. The gated boutique building has only 12 units. Features include private elevator entry, over-sized wrap around terrace, marble/wood floors, covered parking, pool, barbecue area w/gazebo. Walk to Kennedy Park, close to Coconut Grove restaurants & shops, Brickell, Downtown, Beaches & Airport. Asking price is $845,000

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Click here or visit www.1638SouthBayshore.com for more photos and information.

Throughout the years I have helped many friends and clients purchase or sell property throughout Miami & the surrounding area.  If you are interested in purchasing or selling a home, please contact me as I can give some first-hand sound advice with no pressure.  Please send me an email at [email protected] or call me at 305-992-6188.
 
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What to ask when hiring a home inspector?

June 19th, 2013 Written By Carol Pawley

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The home inspection is a vital stage when buying a home. Choosing the right home inspector is important. Before hiring the least expensive inspector right off the bat, it is best to interview two to three different companies and ask the following questions:

 

What are your qualifications and experience?

–       Find out how long they have been in business. Ask to see testimonials from previous customers. See whether or not they are licensed.

 

 What type of report do you provide?

–       The most important part of the home inspection is the detailed report that lists any issues, problems or potential troubles with the house. Find out if the report includes estimates to fix the issues that come up. Ask how long it will take for you to receive the report.

 

 What does the inspection entail?

–       Find out what areas of the home will be inspected and what is included or not included in the inspection.

 

 How much do you charge for the inspection?

–       Price will range depending on the size of the home. 

Throughout the years I have helped many friends and clients purchase or sell property throughout Miami & the surrounding area.  If you are interested in purchasing or selling a home, please contact me as I can give some first-hand sound advice with no pressure.  Please send me an email at [email protected] or call me at  305-992-6188      .
 
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How Your Credit Score Affects Your Mortgage Rate

June 11th, 2013 Written By Carol Pawley

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Before mortgage lenders and banks determine your mortgage rate and other terms of your loan they thoroughly examine your credit score. The better your credit score, the lower the interest rate and the better the payback terms offered by the lending institution. A low credit score will impact your ability to get a loan and at a good rate.

 

Interest rates vary, depending on which rate you will qualify for, but they are always based on your credit score. Credit scores are reported according to grades, where an “A” is excellent, “B” good, “C” not very good, and “D” poor. “F” of course is the worst grade you can receive. Someone with a credit grade “A” will usually have no outstanding credit debts. A person with a “B” grade will perhaps have one or two outstanding obligations. With a “C” you likely have quite a few late payments pending, and a “D” indicates many debts owed or foreclosure declared.

 

When you apply for a loan, the difference between having an “A” grade and a “B” grade can make the difference of about 3 percentage points of interest on your loan. The same may apply to the difference between a “B” and a “C” grade. Those with “C” or “D” ratings may also have a tougher time even securing a mortgage. Below “D”, a borrower will probably not qualify for the loan at all. The difference in the monthly payment for a $200,000 loan between the highest and lowest scores is nearly $200 per month, which over the period of the loan can add up to more than $80,000. This doesn’t even include the lenders’ fees (which, by law, should all be disclosed). This is very significant.

 

In addition to the above grade scale, banks and lending institutions look at a cumulative credit score. All three major credit bureaus, TransUnion, Equifax and Experian, gather the information from the credit lenders. This gives them a picture of the history of your borrowing and repaying. The agencies compute that information into your credit score. These reports are open to any lender. The Fair Isaac Corporation (FICO) takes the information from those reports, and with their own unique formula, condenses them into one total score ranging from 300 to 850.

 

Lenders regard this credit score as a picture of your credit-worthiness. Borrowers with FICO scores between 760 and 850 will be offered lower interest rates and better terms. A score below 620 will place the borrower in the “subprime” category, where he will be receive higher interest rates and less desirable choices as far as terms and types of loans. A borrower with a FICO score of less than 500 will have a difficult time getting a loan.

 

When lenders look at a potential borrower’s credit report, what stands out are the low debt balances. A steady list of on-time payments also goes a long way. A car loan and a few revolving accounts such as credit cards paid in a timely fashion look appealing to a lender.

 

According to underwriting managers at a major mortgage firms, lenders weigh several variables on your credit report:

  • outstanding debt
  • the outstanding debt relative to the total available credit
  • the length of your credit history
  • and whether or not you’ve recently applied for new credit beyond a mortgage

 

*source realtor.com


Throughout the years I have helped many friends and clients purchase or sell property throughout Miami & the surrounding area.  If you are interested in purchasing or selling a home, please contact me as I can give some first-hand sound advice with no pressure.  Please send me an email at [email protected] or call me at  305-992-6188      .
 
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What’s the #1 Advantage Working With Carol Pawley?

May 31st, 2013 Written By Carol Pawley

Not only am I uniquely knowledgeable when it comes to real estate. I am lucky to work with the #1 real estate agency in South Florida known for selling million dollar residences every day.

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Proud to be part of the EWM Realty Family!

 

Throughout the years I have helped many friends and clients purchase or sell property throughout Miami & the surrounding area.  If you are interested in purchasing or selling a home, please contactme as I can give some first-hand sound advice with no pressure.  Please send me an email at[email protected] or call me at 305-992-6188.
 
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New Coconut Grove Foreclosure

April 3rd, 2013 Written By Carol Pawley

A new foreclosure in Coconut Grove just hit the market. Located at 4161 Battersea Rd. The home features 3 beds & 2.5 baths with 2,316 sqft on a 7,800 sf lot. This home is in need of a lot of TLC, however it is on a great street. The asking price is $715,000 and is listed with Benito Realty Group.

Throughout the years I have helped many friends and clients purchase or sell property throughout Miami & the surrounding area.  If you are interested in purchasing or selling a home, please contact me as I can give some first-hand sound advice with no pressure.  Please send me an email at [email protected] or call me at 305-992-6188.
 
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