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Last week I attended a training session for my real estate license renewal.  While I attend training classes all year long, I took this class specifically to add to the 30 hours of continuing education needed for my real estate renewal by the end of October 2018.  Typically, I always leave completing these hours to the last minute, but I have been trying to keep up-to-date on a regular basis.

Next week I will also be at our State’s real estate convention where I will be in more classes.   Even after all this, when I get back home, I will still be short hours and will need to hit the on-line education classes so I have them all.  My brain is already on over-load.bettyjung.com

The CIDA Report

On my blog, I have written many articles about purchasing a condo/townhouse/row house/attached dwelling.  It is far more complicated to purchase a condo, etc. than it is to purchase a home.  All the same inspections and precautions taken when purchasing a house apply when you are purchasing a condo as well, but there is even more documentation and due diligence required for a condo.

Did you know when you buy a condo, you are actually buying into a non-profit organization as well?  There are 11 documents you should request when making an offer to purchase a condo.  During my career, there has always been documentation I requested in offers made by my clients, but now that list of paperwork has expanded considerably.

What CIDA stands for: common interest development analytics.

California, Hawaii and Washington, by law, requires sellers to provide this documentation.  In Oregon, unless you ask for them in your offer, a seller is not required to provide them.  On average, that packet of information, if not provided by a seller and if requested from an HOA instead, could cost you approximately $300 to obtain.

HOA’s During The Recession

During the recession, there were many condo projects that had considerable foreclosures and many projects were in litigation.  Maintenance was deferred and many HOAs did not have a reserve large enough to handle all the repairs needed.  During that time, I came across several condo projects that had anywhere from over $65,000 up to over $150,000 in assessments against owners to take care of those repairs during that time.  In addition, there were changes made to FHA requirements for HOAs to qualify for FHA financing.

Further, condo projects have a life. Did you know that the oldest condo project in the US is in San Juan Puerto Rico?

When You Should Be Concerned About Age When Buying A Condo

When a project is around 10 years old, that is the tipping point for repairs.  It is an Oregon Law that a condo project have a 30-year funding protection program for repairs.

There is a condo project in Seattle that is 40 years old.  It has been boarded up because there were so many repairs, little to no reserves, and homeowners are now without their homes.  I understand it has recently been torn down and it is now a park.

If you want to purchase a condo/townhouse/rowhouse/attached dwelling, let me help.  I have sold many condos and have the knowledge and experience to know how to help you with your purchase. It is imperative your investment is protected.

Thinking of Selling Your Lake Oswego Home?

Prices are still increasing in Lake Oswego. Interest rates are also increasing but are still low and there is a huge pool of buyer demand. I have ready, willing and able buyers ready to purchase your home. If you want to know the value of your home in today’s real estate market, please call me at 503-804-9685.

SEARCH FOR REAL ESTATE

There are links above to search for real estate.  I have a new website where you can search or you can use my mobile phone app as well. My website and mobile app provide you with access to all listings available on the RMLS™ system regardless of who the listing agent or brokerage may be. Listings are updated frequently throughout the day giving you the information you need, when you need it.

Moving to Lake Oswego?

Want to know more about Lake Oswego? I’d love to be your buyer’s agent, please give me a call at 503-804-9685.

I have worked in Lake Oswego as a Real Estate Broker since 1978 and have lived in Lake Oswego since 1988 and know all the neighborhoods! The real estate market is “hot” here in the Portland metro area and Lake Oswego. I am ready to assist you with all your real estate needs! “There is no substitute for experience.”

ALL ABOUT…..Lake Oswego Real Estate. Copyright 2008-2018. Betty Jung. All Rights Reserved. Use of this article, photos and images without permission is a violation of Federal copyright law.

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Garages haven’t always been part of the American home. In fact, it wasn’t until Ford Motor Co. started mass-producing the Model T in 1913 that small detached sheds were built on properties that had enough land to protect these new inventions. In the 1980s, garages grew larger to keep in scale with emerging McMansions. Some were finished with heating, painted floors, windows, and storage. And in the most extreme cases, they were converted into living space, which meant cars again had to be copyright bettyjung.comparked elsewhere.

There are some HOAs that limit the number of cars you can park in your driveway. Some communities even have strict street parking rules, require permits, or limit parking hours. Sometimes permits are available free or at a reduced cost for residents. Checking those HOA rules and regulations are important when purchasing a home regarding parking issues when there is no garage.

How Much Do You Value A Garage?

Recently during their search for a home, my clients realized, after looking at many houses, that a garage was indeed important to them.  Originally it was not on their “wish” list.

In our Lake Oswego Real Estate Market, there are houses sometimes without a garage, some have carports, some have a single car garage, and many times the garage has been converted to additional living space.

Is There Room To Build A Garage?

In Lake Oswego recently, there was a home that did not have a garage that I showed to the clients mentioned above.  That house, during a busy real estate season, sat and did not sell.  There was room to add a garage and that was noted on the listing.  Eventually, and smart of the owner to do so, he added a home without a garage, even if the location, price, and everything else about the house meets their approval.

The Cost Of Adding A Garage

Garage prices vary according to the size, style, materials, foundation required, storage options, types of doors, and who does the work—an architect, design-build firm, or contractor. A “typical” 20-by-20-foot, two-car, detached garage with vinyl siding and shingle roof usually ranges between $20,000 and $38,000 according to NAR®.

How Much Of A Discount For No Garage?

How much of a discount is given to a house with no garage during a sale and by an appraiser? Again, according to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR®),  the absence of a garage can decrease the appraised value by as much as 20 percent.  How much do you value a garage?

Thinking of Selling Your Lake Oswego Home?

Prices are still increasing in Lake Oswego. Interest rates are also increasing but are still low and there is a huge pool of buyer demand. I have ready, willing and able buyers ready to purchase your home. If you want to know the value of your home in today’s real estate market, please call me at 503-804-9685.

SEARCH FOR REAL ESTATE

There are links above to search for real estate.  I have a new website where you can search or you can use my mobile phone app as well. My website and mobile app provide you with access to all listings available on the RMLS™ system regardless of who the listing agent or brokerage may be. Listings are updated frequently throughout the day giving you the information you need, when you need it.

Moving to Lake Oswego?

Want to know more about Lake Oswego? I’d love to be your buyer’s agent, please give me a call at 503-804-9685.

I have worked in Lake Oswego as a Real Estate Broker since 1978 and have lived in Lake Oswego since 1988 and know all the neighborhoods! The real estate market is “hot” here in the Portland metro area and Lake Oswego. I am ready to assist you with all your real estate needs! “There is no substitute for experience.”

ALL ABOUT…..Lake Oswego Real Estate. Copyright 2008-2018. Betty Jung. All Rights Reserved. Use of this article, photos and images without permission is a violation of Federal copyright laws.

Lake Oswego Real Estate Will The Highest Offer Always Be The Winning Offer

The simple answer is no. Once sellers are presented with written offers they are free to choose one of them, reject all of them, or make counter offers.bettyjung.com

There is no obligation to accept the offer with the highest price. In fact, the seller is not obligated to accept any offer.

Even if a competing offer includes a lower price, it might be more attractive for other reasons. For example, the seller might be tempted to choose an offer that doesn’t include a financing condition, or the offer they choose might have a closing date that works better for them.

Price is just one factor for the seller to consider.

Of course, most transactions don’t play out that way, so I’d like to provide some tips for navigating a multiple offer situation (also known as a bidding war).

Planning ahead is important so that you’re prepared for a process that can often be fast-paced, and emotional.

Whenever you’re putting together an offer, it’s best to keep a level head. It’s important to set a budget ahead of time, and stick to it.

You might also be tempted to put in a bid without home inspection or financing conditions to make your offer more attractive. This is a risky proposition. If there’s no financing condition, you could lose your deposit if you can’t get the funds to complete the deal. And without a home inspection condition, you could be on the hook for costly repairs down the road.

These are serious risks, and you should make sure that you understand the trade-offs before you leave these conditions out.

As the summer heats up, the housing market is showing some signs of cooling. This may reduce the number of bidding wars, but it likely won’t eliminate them.

Try to keep your emotions in check, and understand the potential risks of the strategy that you take. Your broker or salesperson can be a guide throughout the process.

Contributed by: Joe Richer, Real Estate Council Of Ontario (RECO)

Thinking of Selling Your Lake Oswego Home?

Prices are still increasing in Lake Oswego. Interest rates are also increasing but are still low and there is a huge pool of buyer demand. I have ready, willing and able buyers ready to purchase your home. If you want to know the value of your home in today’s real estate market, please call me at 503-804-9685.

SEARCH FOR REAL ESTATE

There are links above to search for real estate.  I have a new website where you can search or you can use my mobile phone app as well. My website and mobile app provide you with access to all listings available on the RMLS™ system regardless of who the listing agent or brokerage may be. Listings are updated frequently throughout the day giving you the information you need, when you need it.

Moving to Lake Oswego?

Want to know more about Lake Oswego? I’d love to be your buyer’s agent, please give me a call at 503-804-9685.

I have worked in Lake Oswego as a Real Estate Broker since 1978 and have lived in Lake Oswego since 1988 and know all the neighborhoods! The real estate market is “hot” here in the Portland metro area and Lake Oswego. I am ready to assist you with all your real estate needs! “There is no substitute for experience.”

ALL ABOUT…..Lake Oswego Real Estate. Copyright 2008-2018. Betty Jung. All Rights Reserved. Use of this article, photos and images without permission is a violation of Federal copyright laws.

 

This is a topic I have been wanting to write about for some time, and in fact, was asked about this on a listing appointment with a seller just this past weekend.

Lake Oswego Real Estate Love Letters

On my listings, buyers have submitted love letters.  When I have presented an offer, and on occasion when a listing agent asks for one, I too have submitted a love letter.  However, there are many buyers that are reluctant to submit a love letter.Copyright bettyjung.com

Here is a blog post from another real estate agent I know from Facebook who wrote about this topic today.  She is a Principal Broker of her own company and writes on her St. Paul Real Estate Blog. I would like to share her post rather than me trying to reinvent the wheel.

I will share some of my further thoughts at the end of this post:

Real Estate Love Letters

an offer on your home will be accompanied by a “love letter”.  There isn’t anything wrong with a love letter as long as the letter is mainly about the house and how much the buyers like the property.

Buyers could make an offer and include a letter about how much they like the house and admire the gardens and love the neighborhood. I once had a seller who accepted an offer mainly because of a love letter.

Usually, those love letters never make it to my home seller clients. I ask them if they want to see the letter and encourage them to say no. Why would I do that? Because I am concerned about fair housing violations. If a seller chooses one offer over another based on the family status of the offerer or how the buyer looks that might be a fair housing violation.

As a real estate broker and agent, I can not help any of my clients discriminate against anyone who wants to buy a house.

Usually, when I explain fair housing to my clients they decide not to view the buyer’s love letter.

Buyers who choose to write these letters should omit pictures of themselves and their families and focus on the house they are making an offer on. They may want to include personal information about where they work or what they do for a living.

When the buyers do not know the sellers they can put information in the love letter that has a negative impact.  Maybe the house is on the market because of a death or divorce or financial problems.

I meet homeowners who tell me their home should be sold to someone who will fill it with children. Choosing a buyer based on family status is a fair housing violation.

What Should Be In A Love Letter?

As Teresa Boardman explains above and correctly so, it is more important the letter you submit to a seller talks about the house, gardens etc. and why you love the seller’s home, rather than writing about yourself or your family.  I can think of several scenarios where Fair Housing might come into play with love letters being written and presented.

I am not against love letters, but in all the companies I have worked in, our attorneys have said not to write love letters.  Buyers want that extra edge, but they may not get those extra brownie points when writing a love letter.  A love letter should be written carefully, if at all.

Learn more about the Fair Housing Act here.

Thinking of Selling Your Lake Oswego Home?

Prices are increasing at a fast pace in Lake Oswego. Interest rates are still low and there is a huge pool of buyer demand. I have ready, willing and able buyers ready to purchase your home. If you want to know the value of your home in today’s real estate market, please call me at 503-804-9685.

SEARCH FOR REAL ESTATE

There are links above to search for real estate.  I have a new website where you can search or you can use my mobile phone app as well. My website and mobile app provide you with access to all listings available on the RMLS™ system regardless of who the listing agent or brokerage may be. Listings are updated frequently throughout the day giving you the information you need, when you need it.

Moving to Lake Oswego?

Want to know more about Lake Oswego? I’d love to be your buyer’s agent, please give me a call at 503-804-9685.

I have worked in Lake Oswego as a Real Estate Broker since 1978 and have lived in Lake Oswego since 1988 and know all the neighborhoods! The real estate market is “hot” here in the Portland metro area and Lake Oswego. I am ready to assist you with all your real estate needs! “There is no substitute for experience.”

ALL ABOUT…..Lake Oswego Real Estate. Copyright 2008-2018. Betty Jung. All Rights Reserved. Use of this article, photos and images without permission is a violation of Federal copyright laws.

7 Simple Steps to Assess the Real Cost of a Fixer-Upper House

Do you want to purchase a fixer to hold on to as your own home? Don’t even know where to start? Making an offer may seem daunting, but this might help you figure out how much to offer for a fixer-upper.

Follow these seven steps, and you’ll know how much you can afford, how much to offer, and whether a fixer-upper house is right for you.

#1 Decide What You Can DIY

TV remodeling shows make home improvement work look like a snap.

In the real world, attempting a difficult remodeling job that you don’t know how to do will take longer than you think and can lead to less-than-professional results that won’t increase the value of your fixer-upper house.

Do you really have the skills and experience to do repairs? Some tasks, like stripping wallpaper and painting, are relatively easy. Others, like electrical work, can be dangerous when done by amateurs.

Do you really have the time and desire to do it? Can you take time off work to renovate your fixer-upper house? If not, will you be stressed out by living in a work zone for months while you complete projects on the weekends?

#2 Price the Cost of Renovations Before You Make an Offer

Get your contractor into the house to do a walk-through, so he can give you a written cost estimate on the tasks he’s going to do. If you’re doing the work yourself, price the supplies. Either way, tack on 10% to 20% to cover unforeseen problems that often arise with a fixer-upper house.

#3 Check Permit Costs

Ask local officials if the work you’re going to do requires a permit and how much that permit costs. Doing work without a permit may save money, but it’ll cause problems when you resell your home.

Decide if you want to get the permits yourself or have the contractor arrange for them. Getting permits can be time-consuming and frustrating. Inspectors may force you to do additional work, or change the way you want to do a project, before they give you the permit.

Factor the time and aggravation of permits into your plans. If you are wanting to “flip” the house, you may be required to provide any any and all permits to the new buyers.

#4 Double-Check Pricing on Structural Work

If your fixer-upper home needs major structural work, hire a structural engineer to inspect the home before you put in an offer so you can be confident you’ve uncovered and conservatively budgeted for the full extent of the problems. Get written estimates for repairs before you commit to buying a home with structural issues.

Don’t purchase a home that needs major structural work unless:

  • You’re getting it at a steep discount
  • You’re sure you’ve uncovered the extent of the problem
  • You know the problem can be fixed
  • You know the costs involved and have a binding written estimate for the repairs

#5 Check the Cost of Financing

Be sure you have enough money for a down payment, closing costs, and repairs without draining your savings.

If you’re planning to fund the repairs with a home equity or home improvement loan, get yourself pre-approved for both loans before you make an offer.

Make the deal contingent on getting both the purchase money loan and the renovation money loan, so you’re not forced to close the sale when you have no loan to fix the house.

Consider the Federal Housing Administration’s Section 203(k) program, which is designed to help home owners who are purchasing or refinancing a home that needs rehabilitation.

The program wraps the purchase/refinance and rehabilitation costs into a single mortgage. To qualify for the loan, the total value of the property must fall within the FHA mortgage limit for your area, as with other FHA loans.

A streamlined 203(k) program provides an additional amount for rehabilitation, up to $35,000, on top of an existing mortgage. It’s a simpler process than obtaining the standard 203(k).

Call me to find out about other financing that may help in your purchase.

#6 Calculate Your Fair Purchase Offer

Take the fair market value of the property (what it would be worth if it were in good condition and remodeled to current tastes) and subtract the upgrade and repair costs.

For example: Your target fixer-upper house has a 1960s kitchen, metallic wallpaper, shag carpet, and high levels of radon in the basement.

Your comparison house, in the same subdivision, sold last month for $200,000. That house had a newer kitchen, no wallpaper, was recently re-carpeted, and has a radon mitigation system in its basement.

As an example, the cost to remodel the kitchen, remove the wallpaper, carpet the house, and put in a radon mitigation system could cost $40,000. Your bid for the house should be $160,000.

#7 Include Inspection Contingencies

Don’t rely on your friends or your contractor to eyeball your fixer-upper house. Hire pros to do common inspections like:

  • Home inspection. This is key in a fixer-upper assessment. The home inspector will uncover hidden issues in need of replacement or repair. You may know you want to replace those 1970s kitchen cabinets, but the home inspector has a meter that will detect the water leak behind them.
  • Radon, mold, lead-based paint
  • Septic and/or well
  • Sewer Scope
  • Dry Rot
  • Roof Inspection

Most home inspection contingencies let you go back to the sellers and request they handle any repairs. The seller can also opt to simply back out of the deal, as can you, if the inspection turns up something you don’t want to deal with.

If that happens, this isn’t the right fixer-upper house for you. Go back to the top of this list and start again.

Source: G. M. Filisko

SEARCH FOR REAL ESTATE

There are links above to search for real estate.  I have a new website where you can search or you can use my mobile phone app as well. My website and mobile app provide you with access to all listings available on the RMLS™ system regardless of who the listing agent or brokerage may be. Listings are updated frequently throughout the day giving you the information you need, when you need it.

Thinking of Selling Your Lake Oswego Home?

Prices are increasing at a fast pace in Lake Oswego. Interest rates are still low but are increasing, and there is still a huge pool of buyer demand. I have ready, willing and able buyers ready to purchase your home. If you want to know the value of your home in today’s real estate market, please call me at 503-804-9685.

Moving to Lake Oswego?

Want to know more about Lake Oswego? I’d love to be your buyer’s agent, please give me a call at 503-804-9685.

I have worked in Lake Oswego as a Real Estate Broker since 1978 and have lived in Lake Oswego since 1988 and know all the neighborhoods! The real estate market is “hot” here in the Portland metro area and Lake Oswego. I am ready to assist you with all your real estate needs! “There is no substitute for experience.”

ALL ABOUT…..Lake Oswego Real Estate. Copyright 2008-2018. Betty Jung. All Rights Reserved. Use of this article, photos and images without permission is in violation of federal copyright laws.

Have you ever walked into an open house and had that agent write an offer for you on that home?

Did you go to a builder’s new construction open house and have the builder’s agent sell you the new home?

When you called the listing agent, did you think you were getting a better deal because you had them write your offer?Copyright Betty Jung

Lake Oswego Real Estate Your Right To Have Your Own Buyer’s Agent

In all of these cases, it does not benefit you as a buyer to have the open house agent, the listing agent, or the builder’s agent assist you with your purchase.  In fact, in all of above-mentioned cases, those agents are representing the seller each and every time, and not you at all. Those agents do not have your best interests at heart but are working in the best interests of the seller.

It amazes me that many people still don’t understand agency or what a buyer’s agent is.  Most buyers are not even aware that if you are the buyer you have rights to have your own agent representing you regardless what a lender or a listing or on-site agent will tell you.

Many agents tout themselves as being a “buyer’s agent” when in fact all of us as licensed Oregon real estate agents can be your buyer’s agent.

What’s The Difference Between A Buyer’s Agent And A Seller’s Agent

Buyers Agent – has a buyer’s broker agreement/contract with you and will assist you in shopping for a home.  Your Buyer’s agent researches and previews properties that you might like, helps you get the best price and presents your offer to the seller.

The listing or selling agent, or another person holding the house open, has a responsibility to the home’s seller, builder, or another person who owns the home.

When working with a real estate agent, it is important you clearly understand who that agent’s primary client is and which party in the transaction they are representing.

My Responsibility To You

To learn more about how your interests can most effectively be protected give me a call.  I would be happy to explain the way in which I can represent you.

SEARCH FOR REAL ESTATE

There are links above to search for real estate.  I have a new website where you can search or you can use my mobile phone app as well. My website and mobile app provide you with access to all listings available on the RMLS™ system regardless of who the listing agent or brokerage may be. Listings are updated frequently throughout the day giving you the information you need, when you need it.

Thinking of Selling Your Lake Oswego Home?

Prices are increasing at a fast pace in Lake Oswego. Interest rates are still low but are increasing, and there is still a huge pool of buyer demand. I have ready, willing and able buyers ready to purchase your home. If you want to know the value of your home in today’s real estate market, please call me at 503-804-9685.

Moving to Lake Oswego?

Want to know more about Lake Oswego? I’d love to be your buyer’s agent, please give me a call at 503-804-9685.

I have worked in Lake Oswego as a Real Estate Broker since 1978 and have lived in Lake Oswego since 1988 and know all the neighborhoods! The real estate market is “hot” here in the Portland metro area and Lake Oswego. I am ready to assist you with all your real estate needs! “There is no substitute for experience.”

ALL ABOUT…..Lake Oswego Real Estate. Copyright 2008-2018. Betty Jung. All Rights Reserved. Use of this article, photos and images without permission is in violation of federal copyright laws.

 

Shopping For The Best Real Estate Loan

Over 50% of home buyers don’t shop to find the best interest rate for their mortgage.

While a buyer would rarely purchase the first home they look at, they will accept the rate and terms offered by only one lender. While the borrower and the property affect the rate and terms that a lender may offer, not all lenders offer the same service, terms and rates to the same buyer.

I advise my clients that shopping around to compare rate and terms for a mortgage is a reasonable exercise considering that a half percent less interest rate could not only lower the payment but the cumulative interest that is paid while that loan is outstanding. When meeting with buyers, I am always amazed when buyers don’t shop for the best rates and fees for a mortgage.

Over the years, I have also found many mortgage brokers/lenders promise the moon but fail to deliver.  In addition, some buyers seem to think out-of-state, big-box companies with loan services, somehow offer the best products for you. Frankly, I have found this not to be true.

Many times I am asked for a mortgage broker/loan officer referral for those buyers.  Because of my years selling real estate, I have consistently worked with tried and true mortgage brokers.  It behooves a buyer to work with someone locally that I routinely work with.  I do not get a referral fee or make any money when referring my favorite and best loan officers to you.  My only pay-off is that since I have worked with them for many years, I know they will take excellent care of you and deliver what they promise to give you the best rates and loan product available. And, to get your transaction closed on time.

Equally important is hiring a mortgage broker that best suits your needs, and not doing so can derail a transaction quickly.  Being available and paying attention to your specific real estate transaction and its conditions is something extremely important.

Rates are increasing, and if you’re ready to take the plunge to purchase a new home and get pre-approved for a loan, give me a call at 503-804-9685. I will be happy to refer you to the best Portland-metro area loan officers in the business.

SEARCH FOR REAL ESTATE

There are links above to search for real estate.  I have a new website where you can search or you can use my mobile phone app as well. My website and mobile app provide you with access to all listings available on the RMLS™ system regardless of who the listing agent or brokerage may be. Listings are updated frequently throughout the day giving you the information you need, when you need it.

Thinking of Selling Your Lake Oswego Home?

Prices are increasing at a fast pace in Lake Oswego. Interest rates are still low and there is a huge pool of buyer demand. I have ready, willing and able buyers ready to purchase your home. If you want to know the value of your home in today’s real estate market, please call me at 503-804-9685.

Moving to Lake Oswego?

Want to know more about Lake Oswego? I’d love to be your buyer’s agent, please give me a call at 503-804-9685.

I have worked in Lake Oswego as a Real Estate Broker since 1978 and have lived in Lake Oswego since 1988 and know all the neighborhoods! The real estate market is “hot” here in the Portland metro area and Lake Oswego. I am ready to assist you with all your real estate needs! “There is no substitute for experience.”

ALL ABOUT…..Lake Oswego Real Estate. Copyright 2008-2018. Betty Jung. All Rights Reserved. Use of this article, photos and images without permission is in violation of federal copyright laws.

It’s What’s Under The Hood That Matters

Recently a past client of mine made an offer on a home that was completely updated.  We knew this from what was stated in the RMLS™ listing and from looking at the house. This home had all the bells and whistles and shined with the latest decorating trends. I was a bit leery about the home’s condition because it was a “flip” and knew, as they say, ‘it’s what’s under the hood” that mattered a lot more than what we were able to see with our own eyes.https://lakeoswegorealestateblog.wordpress.com/

As I always do, regardless if the home is brand new, or looks like the home is in good condition, I recommend a full home inspection along with other inspections such as a tank scan, sewer scope, roof inspection, etc., etc.

Prepare for Home Inspection Surprises

My client proceeded to have all the necessary  home inspections and I have to say, even I was surprised with all the defects that were presented to us as a result of the inspection reports.

Oil Tanks, Sewer Blockages, Even a “Live” Animal Oy’vey

While home buyers are sometimes strapped, don’t have extra cash and are reluctant to spend money on a home they may or may not be buying, the cost of home inspections are minimal compared to keeping from making a huge financial mistake. It is the best insurance a buyer can have that the home being purchased is indeed in good condition.

During this particular transaction and as a result of the home inspections, the buyer was information of roofing issues, structural issues, electrical and plumbing repairs/improvements not up to code, siding and foundation sill rot, beams not anchored, lack of heat from vents, large foundation cracks, ceilings buckling, water pooling, to mention only a “few” of the issues.  On top of the updated “flip” deficiencies, there was an oil tank, a sewer blockage that extended the entire length of the front yard and to top it off a wild animal living and nesting in the crawl space.

Don’t Get Fooled By Shiny Objects

At first sight the house was perfect. It was exactly what my buyer was looking for in the location where he wanted. Looking at the house you would never have known there were so many problems.

During the height of our most recent “hot” housing market, buyers in many cases, especially in multiple offer situations, waived their right to have any kind of home inspection(s). I cringed when I heard that buyers were doing that, while I never recommended my clients go that route just to “win” a home.

Walking Away Vs. Negotiating Repairs

Problems with a home can derail a transaction causing buyers to “walk away”.  In this case my buyer did not continue with the purchase as the repairs were just too daunting. They did purchase another home that was “perfect” in the same area.

Buyers need to, however, understand the differences between health and safety issues, versus normal wear and tear. There are many options open to buyers when repairs are an issue. Many times sellers are willing to negotiate repairs as well. Buyers should be prepared for surprises and make a plan, with their Real Estate Broker’s help,  for those unpredictable repairs.

Inventory is tight in our Lake Oswego and Portland metro real estate market and a faulty home inspection doesn’t always have to result in not purchasing the home of your dreams. Sometimes it just takes talking through the inspection issues if the home meets all the other requirements you are looking for.

But, in any and all cases, please have those home inspections.

Thinking of Selling Your Lake Oswego Home?

Prices are increasing at a fast pace in Lake Oswego. Interest rates are still low and there is a huge pool of buyer demand. I have ready, willing and able buyers ready to purchase your home. If you want to know the value of your home in today’s real estate market, please call me at 503-804-9685.

Moving to Lake Oswego?

Want to know more about Lake Oswego? I’d love to be your buyer’s agent, please give me a call at 503-804-9685.

I have worked in Lake Oswego as a Real Estate Broker since 1978 and have lived in Lake Oswego since 1988 and know all the neighborhoods! The real estate market is “hot” here in the Portland metro area and Lake Oswego. I am ready to assist you with all your real estate needs! “There is no substitute for experience.”

ALL ABOUT…..Lake Oswego Real Estate. Copyright 2008-2018. Betty Jung. All Rights Reserved. Use of this article, photos and images without permission is a violation of Federal copyright laws.

 

Lake Oswego Real Estate First Time Homebuyer

Are You A First Time Homebuyer?

There’s lots to know about purchasing your first home.  I am sure you have lots of questions about Lake Oswego Real Estate and home buying.

Here’s a tip about Homeowners’ Insurance from Prime Lending:

Becoming a first-time homebuyer can be both exciting and nerve-racking at the same time. There are a lot of expenses you’ve probably heard about that come with closing on your first home, for instance the down payment, closing costs and agent fees. One expense you may be less familiar with is homeowners’ insurance. Don’t get blindsided by the cost insurance might add to your financial responsibilities – take time to understand your options and get estimates before putting down a large sum on your home.

We’ve assembled a number of most commonly asked questions that first-time homebuyers ask to help give you a better sense of what you need to know when shopping for homeowners’ insurance.

How Much Coverage Do I Need? A Home Inventory Will Tell You.

Start by completing a home inventory (a comprehensive list of everything you own and each item’s value). Make a list or your possessions, describing each item, and noting the make and model and where each item was purchased. Include sales receipts, purchase contracts and appraisals if you have them. Organize your clothing into categories so they are easier to reference.

Here are some handy tips to help you organize your inventory:

  • List big-ticket items such as jewelry, artwork and collectibles
  • Take pictures of important individual items and store with descriptions
  • Describe the contents of each room
  • Save your inventory list on your computer and store it on an external hard drive or disk (you can also send it to a trusted family member for safe-keeping as well)
  • Put all the photos, lists and any other documentation (electronic or paper) in a safe deposit box

What Coverages Are Included?

Standard homeowners’ insurance policies include coverage of:

  • The structure of the home – if your home is damaged or destroyed by a covered peril (fire, windstorms, hail, lightning, theft, vandalism, explosion, water damage and riots)
  • Your home’s contents – if your belongings are damaged or destroyed, it’s typically set between 50 and 70% of your home’s structural coverage; high-value items have a cap on repair/replacement value so you may need a rider policy added
  • Liability – if someone is injured on your property, the liability portion of your insurance policy can help pay for medical, rehab, funeral expenses and legal fees in the event of a lawsuit
  • Other structures – if your detached garage or toolshed is damaged or destroyed by a covered peril (see structure of the home for covered perils), your insurance can help pay to have it repaired or rebuilt
  • Additional living expenses – in the event that you home is destroyed and needs to be rebuilt, this coverage can help pay for living expenses (hotel and food bills) while you’re displaced

Why Won’t Your Insurance Costs Be The Same As The Current Owner’s?

Many first-time homebuyers assume that they will be paying the same for insurance as the previous owner. In fact, many ask the previous homeowners how much they paid for electricity, school and property taxes, along with the insurance cost when deciding on whether or not to buy the home.

What a previous owner paid in insurance is not always a good indicator of what you’ll pay. There are some predictable and consistent factors, such as if the home is in a flood area, or in an area with many windstorms, hail or tornado claims. But, insurance companies like lenders, take into account your personal information to establish the cost; your age, credit rating, profession and other personal choices are used to determine what kind of insurance they choose and how much you’ll pay.

What Factors Can Affect How Much I Pay For Homeowners Insurance?

The following variables can impact the cost of your homeowners’ insurance premium:

  • Home features and characteristics – your home’s age, type of structure, wiring, roof, garage and more can affect your homeowners’ insurance premium. Older homes tend to cost more to insure, and those costs can depend on whether your home is brick, frame, stone or has synthetic siding.
  • Location – where your home is located can impact your premium. Proximity to a police or fire station, exposure to extreme weather (hurricanes, tornadoes, floods) or theft-prone neighborhoods all factor in.
  • Protective devices – burglar alarms, smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, sprinkler systems and deadbolt locks can lower your insurance premium.
  • Personal factors – believe it or not, being a smoker may cause you to pay more for your home insurance than a nonsmoker; in their eyes there’s a greater chance for an accidental fire. A good credit history can also lower your insurance.
  • Claims history – if you have a history of claims, you’ll pay more and if you made a claim under a previous insurance policy, like a renter’s policy, you’re not eligible for a claims-free discount.
  • Previous insurance history – factors like if you’ve never had previous insurance on a residence, have a gap in your insurance history, or if you’ve been previously cancelled by an insurance company for non-payment can impact coverage and cost.

How Can I Save Money On Insurance?

It is possible to cut the costs by making certain adjustments. Some of these are immediate solutions and some require a longer term modification.

  • Discounts – Most insurers offer a laundry list of discounts for policyholders. One of the most common is bundling; by bundling your home and auto insurance with the same provide, you’ll be entitled to a discount. As mentioned earlier, safety/protective devices can also reduce your premiums.
  • Raise Your Deductible – Raising the amount you agree to pay toward a claim before the insurance kicks will lower your premiums. However, setting it too high can come to bite you in the end if disaster strikes.
  • Improve Your Credit Score – Most insurance providers use your credit score as an indicator of how likely you are to file a claim. Studies have shown that those with low credit scores were more prone to filing claims than those who could afford to tackle replacements or repairs on their own.

Does Having Renters Insurance Help Me Lower Costs When I Buy My First Home?

Yes. In addition to the obvious protection from unexpected financial pains in the posterior such as the cat knocking down a candle and starting a fire, or the local thief who decides your TV is his – renters insurance sets you up to save money on your home or condo insurance when you buy your first home. If you show a loss-free claims history, you could be eligible for a discount. Waiting until you buy your first home could cost you up to 25% more for your home insurance as compared to if you had renters insurance for years.

How Do I Pay For My Homeowners’ Insurance?

There are two ways to pay your annual homeowners’ insurance premium. You can pay it once annually, in cash, to your insurer or elect to pay it as part of your mortgage (escrowing), one month-at-a-time. Homeowners choosing to optionally escrow their homeowners’ insurance can typically negotiate lower mortgage rates or loan fees with their lender. A PrimeLending home loan expert can help you evaluate the potential benefits of escrowing your insurance payments.

How Do I Choose A Provider?

The best advice we can give is to shop around for the rates and programs which best meet your needs. Like mortgage rates, homeowners’ insurance vary between carriers. They also vary in terms of coverage. Don’t be shy about asking friends for recommendations either, referrals are great ways to validate the quality of a provider. However you identify potential providers, be sure to get quotes from several companies and compare them.

Source: Prime Lending

SEARCH FOR REAL ESTATE

There are links above to search for real estate.  I have a new website where you can search or you can use my mobile phone app as well. My website and mobile app provide you with access to all listings available on the RMLS™ system regardless of who the listing agent or brokerage may be. Listings are updated frequently throughout the day giving you the information you need, when you need it.

Thinking of Selling Your Lake Oswego Home?

Prices are increasing at a fast pace in Lake Oswego. Interest rates are still low but are increasing, and there is still a huge pool of buyer demand. I have ready, willing and able buyers ready to purchase your home. If you want to know the value of your home in today’s real estate market, please call me at 503-804-9685.

Moving to Lake Oswego?

Want to know more about Lake Oswego? I’d love to be your buyer’s agent, please give me a call at 503-804-9685.

I have worked in Lake Oswego as a Real Estate Broker since 1978 and have lived in Lake Oswego since 1988 and know all the neighborhoods! The real estate market is “hot” here in the Portland metro area and Lake Oswego. I am ready to assist you with all your real estate needs! “There is no substitute for experience.”

ALL ABOUT…..Lake Oswego Real Estate. Copyright 2008-2018. Betty Jung. All Rights Reserved. Use of this article, photos and images without permission is in violation of federal copyright laws.

Spring_in_Lake_Oswego

When Buying A Lake Oswego Home Listen to What Your Eyes See

https://lakeoswegorealestateblog.wordpress.com/

Spring Isn’t That Far Away!

Recently while showing homes in the Lake Oswego and Portland metro areas, I was reminded once again how important it is to listen to what your eyes see.  No that isn’t a typo in the headline, because often I find buyers see flaws in a home while looking, but they tend to ignore them and don’t listen to what their instincts are actually telling them.

Buyers get emotionally involved when looking for their home of their dreams.  As a real estate agent I wouldn’t want it any other way, but I feel it is also my job to point out possible issues.

Many years ago, a colleague of mine wanted my opinion along with another friend’s, who was also a real estate agent, before she purchased a home.  The house was exactly what she was looking for.  While it was in a subdivision, it seemed to be on an island of its home, surrounded by nature and a pond. I remember succinctly standing in front of the garage and looking up to my right where there was a huge hill.  Immediately I thought since the home was at the bottom of that very large hill, if there ever was a landslide, it would wipe out the house.  Even though I said that to my friend, she purchased the home.  Sure enough, many years later, there was a landslide and it not only wiped out the pond but also flattened her home.  I saw the potential danger, she saw the potential danger, but she did not listen to what her eyes saw.

Buying A Lake Oswego Home In The Winter Months

Showing houses in the rain, ice and snow recently, there were two houses I showed that both had water issues.  There was obvious mold in one home and in another home, the basement and garage also showed a lot of water intrusion. While you will have a full home inspection, and possible other inspections, if you can actually see damage, know there could be an even great problem.

Keep Your Eyes Open When Buying A Lake Oswego Home

In another situation, I had a client who wanted to see a condo in a particular complex.  I knew a lot about that complex going back many years having HOA problems and not having sufficient funds for repairs.  Through the years, the homeowners were hit with large assessments to make major repairs.  I remember this was an on-going issue with that complex, but my buyer insisted on seeing a unit there.

While showing her the property, I asked her to stop in the middle of the complex and look around.  What we saw were roofs heavy with moss and showed wear, decks had obvious dry rot, the swimming pool needed major work and there was raw siding with little to no paint or peeling paint.

Once she stopped and listened to what her eyes saw, she decided, on her own, not to purchase in that complex.

Your Lake Oswego Home Maybe The Largest Investment You  Make

Once you purchase your home, I certainly don’t want you to have any further issues, but only to enjoy your new home to the fullest. In addition to your overall due diligence, keep your eyes open, look around, and listen to what your eyes see.

SEARCH FOR REAL ESTATE

There are links above to search for real estate.  I have a new website where you can search or you can use my mobile phone app as well. My website and mobile app provide you with access to all listings available on the RMLS™ system regardless of who the listing agent or brokerage may be. Listings are updated frequently throughout the day giving you the information you need, when you need it.

Thinking of Selling Your Lake Oswego Home?

Prices are increasing at a fast pace in Lake Oswego. Interest rates are still low but are increasing, and there is still a huge pool of buyer demand. I have ready, willing and able buyers ready to purchase your home. If you want to know the value of your home in today’s real estate market, please call me at 503-804-9685.

Moving to Lake Oswego?

Want to know more about Lake Oswego? I’d love to be your buyer’s agent, please give me a call at 503-804-9685.

I have worked in Lake Oswego as a Real Estate Broker since 1978 and have lived in Lake Oswego since 1988 and know all the neighborhoods! The real estate market is “hot” here in the Portland metro area and Lake Oswego. I am ready to assist you with all your real estate needs! “There is no substitute for experience.”

ALL ABOUT…..Lake Oswego Real Estate. Copyright 2008-2018. Betty Jung. All Rights Reserved. Use of this article, photos and images without permission is in violation of federal copyright laws.

Contact Betty Jung

Betty Jung, Broker
REALTOR®
CRS, GRI, ABR, SRES, CNHSS

MORE Realty, Inc.
14945 SW Sequoia Parkway, #150
Portland, OR. 97224

503-804-9685 Cell

or email:betty@bettyjung.com

"Selling Real Estate Since 1978. There Is No Substitute For Experience!"

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