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Inspections - should I?


Home Inspections:   One common question is “Should I get a home inspection”  and the answer is probably!  Home inspectors are trained to look at areas of a home that home owners may not be familiar with.  However, they cant see inside walls, and I don’t know any inspectors that can predict the future, but they may be able to spot a problem you never saw.  They are not emotionally involved so they are a good source for a second opinion about whether the home is safe and sound.  Some of the things home inspectors evaluate are:  roof, structure, electrical, heat, ventilation, plumbing, drainage.  If there are areas of the home that seem questionable they may call for a more specific inspection like an electrician, roof inspector, foundation, but with the general inspection at least you can find out if the home systems are functioning correctly.  Why did I say maybe?  If you are buying a “fixer upper” and know you have numerous repairs, you may be comfortable without an inspection.  An appraisal and a home inspection are 2 different things. An appraiser looks for the value of the home, and will be sure it meets the loan requirements.  Some loans have the appraiser request any needed repairs to fit the loan program.  The home inspection will evaluate many areas of the home and will give you a detail report of their findings.  Costs for home inspections can be $350-600 dollars.  Seems like a small price to pay to know what works and what may not!

To repair or not to repair?


What should we fix?  One of the most common questions we hear as professional realtors.  Here is why it is important.  Home loans!  Did you know homes must meet a certain standard to qualify for certain loans?   VA, USDA and FHA loans require homes to meet certain requirements in order to qualify for their loans.  Chipping paint, ripped screens, and uneven flooring are all things that may make your home not ready for a loan.  A professional realtor can help you evaluate your home to get it loan ready!  Conventional loans do not always have the same requirements, so knowing what category your home falls in, will also help you know how long it will take to sell.  If it will only qualify for conventional loans some buyers will not be able to purchase your home.   This is why it is important to know what kind of loan the buyer is working with, a “fixer upper” may not be the best home for a person utilizing FHA, VA or USDA loans.  Does this mean your home has to be in perfect condition before selling – NO, and Realtors can help you navigate thru the important repairs to get the most buyers to your door.



Community Growth and Service

Are you volunteering or serving your community in some way?  I bet you are and you don’t even recognize it!  Our small towns thrive on local volunteers that share their areas of expertise.  In every county we have local volunteers that serve on many boards and help local organizations.  4H is a youth organization that helps teach young people how to serve and gain a sense of community.  Chamber of Commerce is often a good place for finding out what is available and what is needed.  Many people are passionate about their pets, so local animal shelters are a great place to help out.  Realtors are all part of a service organization and participating in the Salvation Army Ring the Bell program, giving out scholarships, and hosting parade of homes are just a few ways realtors give back.  In todays world of selfies, lets quit looking at our self, and decide how we can serve others.  Looking for more ideas to give of your time?  How about local volunteer fire associations?  Girl or boy scout troops?  Church?  The list is long, simply find what you are passionate about and find a way to give.  It wont seem like work if you love it!


Real Estate Terms

Have you ever thought about learning a new language?  Buying or selling a home can feel like that sometimes.  There are hundreds of acronyms used in a real estate deal:

FSBO – for sale by owner

LTV – Loan to Value

ARM – Adjustable Rate Mortgage

Central H/A – Central Heat and Air

These are a few of the common acronyms you may know.  How about these?

LPOA – Limited Power of Attorney

DTI – Debt to Income Ratio

SFR – Single Family Residence

If you have made 100 so far, lets try:

TIL – Truth in Lending

POF – Proof of Funds

MLS – Multi Listing Service

Why learn a new language, or try to navigate real estate by yourself?  Let a Realtor help guide you thru the process.

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