Sunday, February 21, 2021 / by Soraya Joud
For many people, owning a home is a lifelong dream. For others, owning a second home can be just as important. There are a variety of reasons people have for purchasing a second home—as a family getaway, as a transition into retirement, or as an investment property for added financial security. Whatever your reasons, it’s important to understand a bit about the process as you begin your search.
Financing a second home
In many ways, financing for your second home works the same as financing for your primary home. Homeowners can have up to four homes financed through conventional mortgages, so you may want to reach out to your current lender in order to see what options they have available. In some cases, you have to provide a larger down payment for a second property, and your lender may also require a somewhat higher credit score.
If you have a great deal of equity in your current home, you may be able to tap into it through a home equity loan or a home equ ...
Tuesday, January 19, 2021 / by Soraya Joud
When you watch a show on HGTV where an eager young couple is looking for a home, it usually ends when the offer is accepted. In real life, however, that is only the beginning of the story. The closing or escrow process has its own rules and challenges. By being prepared for each step of the process, you’ll be able to stay calm, cool, and collected—even if the unexpected occurs.
Generally, the closing process takes anywhere from 30–60 days. In the case of a cash transaction, it may take less time to close, since much of the timeline is built around a loan approval. By contrast, in the case of a sale with a home sale or purchase contingency, the closing process can take quite a bit longer.
Most escrow periods will include the following steps, though there may be some variability based on market conditions and the type of mortgage for which you are applying.
One of the first things that will happen after your offer is accepted ...
Sunday, December 27, 2020 / by Soraya Joud
While you may have been ready to buy a home during the 2020 spring market, the uncertainties caused by the pandemic may have put a damper on your plans. At this point, you may be uncertain about your post-COVID-19 real estate goals and unsure whether the opportunity to work from home will inspire you to move to another market or another type of home.
If you’re looking to get ready for a home purchase a few months down the road, this plan will help ensure you’ve covered all your bases. From finance to logistics, it’s important to think through the changes on the horizon to streamline your 2021 home purchase.
Preparing to finance your purchase
One of the first things you’ll want to think about is the financing for your home purchase. Talk to a real estate professional and ask for an introduction to a mortgage lender, if you don’t already have one in mind.
Talk to your lender about the pre-approval process. When it’s time to begin seri ...
Thursday, November 19, 2020 / by Soraya Joud
Whether you’re big on Halloween parties, planning the perfect Thanksgiving feast, or focusing on the December holiday season, if you’re also planning to sell your home, you may be contemplating holding off until January. After all, nobody buys houses this time of year, do they? In 2020, the answer may very well be “Yes, they do.”
The COVID-delayed spring market and pent-up buyer demand, along with low inventory in the spring and summer selling season and record-low interest rates, means that for many buyers the search for the perfect home is ongoing. If you were thinking of waiting until 2021 to sell your home, you might want to consider moving your plans up and listing your home during the fall and winter months to take advantage of strong buyer demand.
Advantages of Listing a Home During the Holidays
There are plenty of good reasons to list your home during the holiday season, including the following:
You’re likely to find more motiva ...
Wednesday, November 11, 2020 / by Soraya Joud
It doesn’t matter how perfect your home is—if your listing photos don’t stand out, potential buyers won’t come by to take a look. In our series "Lessons From Listing Photos," we dissect the smart updates sellers have made to their homes, and how their listing pictures highlight the home’s best assets.
This spacious Portland home has an innate cool factor, thanks to its high ceilings and midcentury architecture. When the sellers purchased it for $548,000 in 2012, it was already a unique home—but the dark, outdated interiors were badly in need of a refresh. It's a good thing this place had so much potential!
A total redesign with a Scandinavian minimalist twist turned things around, and in 2019, it sold for $920,000.
So how did embracing less result in a home value that nearly doubled? We went straight to our experts to find out what the best design moves were from the sellers—and how you can make it ...