Buying or Selling a Home in Albuquerque
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Credit tips that will score lower interest rates are ALWAYS a god thing! A good credit score translates into lower interest rates for home-shopping borrower. In a mortgage lender's eyes, the higher your score is, the less risk you are, and the more likely it is you will pay off your debt. for this reason, borrowers with lower scores usually end up paying higher interest rates on their loans.
If this is you, don't panic. there are a number of things you can do to adjust your credit score to receive a favorable review from the underwritter. Here are a few suggestions:
Should I pay off all my past due balances and charge-offs?
This is usually a good idea, but you only need to worry about the past due balances and charge-offs that have occurred in the last two years. Items more than two years old have little effect on your current credit score. In fact, if you pay off delinquent items over two years old, it can actually bring your credit score down - something you don't want to do. Bringing that score up means you'll get a better interest rate on your loan.
Should I close existing credit card accounts that I don't use?
This is one credit tip that will score lower rates that people don't know. The simple answer, No. Part of your credit score is based upon credit history. If you have old credit cards that you don't use very much, you still have the benefit of the credit history they represent.
Rather that trying to pay off all your credit cards, you can move part of the debt from one card to another to even out the distribution of debt. Try to keep balances as close to zero as possible and definitely below 30% of the available credit limit when trying to purchase a home. also, if your credit provider will increase your line of credit, the ratio of debt to available credit is automatically reduced.
When married couples have separate credit card accounts, the debt can be transferred from one spouse to another to clear up credit issues for the other spouse. That spouse with the clean credit can be designated as the sole borrower on the loan, but ownership of the new Albuquerque home can still go in both names.
What about errors on my credit report?
If you have items that are showing up on your credit report that you know you have paid, request that these items be removed by the credit bureau. They are obligated to rectify this within 30 days.
If there are items on your credit report that are less than two years old, send in your payment if possible and mark the back of the check with the following notation: "Accepting this check is evidence that the transaction is complete and this charge will be deleted from my credit record." If necessary, the cancelled check will be proof that this should be promptly removed from your credit report if it interferes with the closing of your loan.
We hope these Credit tips that will score lower interest rates help you find a home in this Albuquerque home market. Things are definitely heating up and home buyers need every littel edge they can get to secure their dream home quickly!
For more info, call Mariah @ 505-275-5300
Buying a new home is YOUR decision. It may sound obvious but it can be one thing that can confuse and end the home buying process, especially for first time homebuyers. If it doesn't end the home buying process it could cause great confusion and often times regret. I have seen, several times, interference with parents, friends or even neighbors. First time homebuyers are particularly susceptible to this pitfall. Let me explain...
The main reason I say buying a new home is your decision is simple. You or you and your partner or spouse knows what is best for you and your family (if you have one at the time). You know what your needs are. Only you can get that "feeling" when walking into the right home and you should not let your father, mother, brother, friend or even Realtor tell you otherwise. Its your home!! If you know this, then act on it. If you are not ready to buy a home and someone is pressuring you then stop. You are going to waste a lot of people's time in the process. I recently read a quote which really brought it home for me as a Realtor because I have seen time and time again in-laws making decisions for what seems to be little Johnny and little Suzy on their first home purchase. It's very sad to watch but it happens over and over again. Anyway, here is the quote - "30 years of helping couples buy and sell real estate, I've learned that how involved the in-laws are is a good predictor of happiness. If either spouse listens to their parents' opinion instead of their partner's, I know I'll get that house back as a listing soon, when the divorce is final." It's a pretty harsh quote, I know but it really drives the point home
So, when you are looking for a new home in Albuquerque, or any where else, always keep in mind that buying a new home is YOUR decision. I certainly am not saying to not listen to experience. It is perfectly natural and fine to seek advice from family and friends, but if you are in this together with a partner, listen very closely to each others want and needs. Find a Realtor you can trust and that will be blunt and to the point with all things real estate. If your father puts a purchase agreement in front of your face and say "sign" on a home that he thinks is good, think long and hard if that is the right decision for you and your family! It sounds strange but I have actually seen that happen first hand...
The importance of seeing a home first hand is, without a doubt, crucial step when looking for a home in Albuquerque. There are a few exceptions and I have personally dealt with a buyer purchasing a home "site unseen" a hand full of times. I was never really comfortable until the buyer actually stepped foot into the home because one of the challenges I deal with as a buyer's specialist is doctored photos online. I would like to share my experience with what I have heard several sellers say is "unfair" when photos do not represent the home realistically.
Several Realtors take pride in the photos they take of their listings, some do not. Some feel that it is necessary to Photoshop, soften and widen each shot they take of each room transforming the home into an airy, fairy tale picture book. I can understand representing the home in its best possible light but making the home look like you have just stepped into a Thomas Kinkade painting, well that's just..unfair! When I show homes that have been "Kinkaded", I OFTEN hear "Oh. This is disappointing. It looked so much better online. Thats unfair." It then turns into an uncomfortable showing and the buyer usually leaves sooner than later. That is why the importance of seeing the home first hand is crucial. It can certainly go the other way as well. Some feel that it is acceptable to take four pictures of the front of the home as they drive by and often forget to cut the side mirrors of thier car out of the picture (I like to try and guess what kind of car they have based off the mirror!). Needless to say these homes do not receive many showings at all.
Our Albuquerque MLS is full of all different kinds of photos of homes. Some are extremely over the top while others are just right. We at the Albuquerque real estate group take pride in hiring a photographer that represents our listings in a realistic, classy, professional way. But know matter what, always remember the importance of seeing a home first hand. We Realtors are human. We get a little carried away...or not at all. Just explain to your Realtor what you are looking for and he or she will work very hard to cut through all the fluff and find your next Albuquerque home!
What will stay and what will go in a home sale? I'm sure it is different from place to place, state to state but if certain items are not looked over, weeks after a closing can be pretty difficult and stressful (annoying!). In this bit of information I will try to give you a quick idea of how things work in the Albuquerque housing market on a typical deal.
I often have buyers ask me what will stay and what will go in a home sale. I often forget that many buyers do not know. Why would they? Its a great question! The absolute best thing a buyer can do is ask lots of questions to make sure that they are crystal clear on every aspect of a real estate offer. In Albuquerque, things that are bolted to or fastened to the floor, wall or counter usually stay with the home. These items include the stove/oven, dishwasher, garbage disposal, microwave (if it is attached), mirrors, curtain rods, window covering (non decorative) and, obviously, sinks and cabinets. One item that is often discussed and can be overlooked on either side is the refrigerator. Is that is something that you are interested in or any other item that you might enjoy, have your Realtor include the item in the contract BUT do not make the entire deal about a pair of curtains!! I have seen buyers get wrapped up in a $300 refrigerator and cause unwarranted stress in the deal because they want some place to cool their beer in the garage. Just ask and the worst thing that can happen is the seller says no. Then MOVE ON! Keep your eye on the prize and don't let a used appliance taint a perfectly good real estate deal.
So, what will stay and what will go in a home sale? It can all depends on what the buyer and seller negotiate. The Albuquerque standard GAAR purchase agreement includes several items (all of which can be taken by the seller, by the way), but, as they say, EVERYTHING is negotiable!
Just recently I was confronted with a new challenge.
While working with a short sale seller under contract (for the past 5 - 6 months) we received an approval letter from B of A just recently. Needless to say there have been several people working hard to get this transction to the aproval stage so we could more forward to closing. The fact that the buyer hung in there for that long in itself is a small miracle. Everyone started gearing up for inspections, appraisal and final underwritting. Then comes the upper cut to the deal...
My seller calls to inform me that the bank, dispite the fact that they have approved the offer and issued an approval letter, has been working with the seller to "modify the current mortgage." The seller then proceeds to let me know that he will now accept the modification. I then tell him to speak with his lawyer since his has been under contract this entire time to sell his home to the patient buyer. Non-performance...
Why would the bank continue to work with the seller to modify the loan when they have already accepted an offer?? Are the different departments not communicating with one another?? If so, that is NO excuse. If I ran my bussiness in such a manner, I would last 2 months. But they are the bank, right? They are the exception.
My point is this - if you are considering buying a short sale in Albuquerque, or any where in the country, do your homework and know what you are getting into. If you are considering selling your home short, then stick with that. Exhaust the loan modification idea before you put several people to work. Know what you are jumping into before you sink the entire ship...
Here a a few tips to consider when working with a Real Estate professional whether you are considering buying or selling Albuquerque real estate.
- They can offer financial advice on what you can afford, what your home may be worth and They can also help you sort out your financial situation.
- They should have access to the local Albuquerque MLS system and many other sources to find information on properties listed in the areas that you are most interested in including your current area
- They can get in contact with home owners to set up appointments to view homes that you would like to get into.
- They should be up to date with current RANM (Realtor's Association of New Mexico) forms and hot topics, like Short sales in Albuquerque.
- They can point you in all the right directions regarding you home financing needs.
- They are skilled negotiators and will try their best to get you the best possible deal on your home!
These are a few things to consider if you are thinking about going out on your own OR having the listing agent represent you in the sale of his/her own listing.
There are sooo many websites to choose from when looking for a home to buy and you can type in any search term and there will be thousands, if not millions of sites that are relative to that term. It can be very over whelming and confusing so hopefully I can shed some light on this for you.
The best thing to try and do is stay local. The big sites are there to get you to sign-up and then sell you as a lead to other Realtors and take their coin and go off to the next lead. You will never know what you are gong to get! You could get someone who has just started last week or someone you has been in the business 100 years and is sick of it. My point here is, if you stay local chances are you will be able to do your research right there on the website about the Albuquerque Realtor. In other words, what you see is probably what you will get!
The other issue with the "Big Boy" websites is that thier information is most likely dated or completely inaccurate. Since New Mexico is a non-disclosure state, some of these websites have gather information from...well, I have no idea where these websites get their information. People get on the "Z" and look at property values around their neighborhood and get VERY skewed information. Then we as Realtors get to prove to them that thier home is not worth $800,000 but closer to $350,000. You can see where this would be a colossal waste of everyone's time.
So, Take your time and shop these sites. Read about the Realtors and then move forward with you Albuquerque home purchase!
You may have heard the term "Asorption Rate" in terms of real estate statistics when looking for a home and, most likely, when interviewing Realtor's to sell a home. But if you haven't, here is what it means:
- The Absorption Rate measures how long it will take to exhaust or sell the current Albuquerque home inventory. The typical Albuquerque home market should show a 6 month absorption rate. In other words, it would take 6 months (if no other home was added to the inventory) for the current home inventory to sell. Its a great way just to see how the market is picking up or slowing down.
Last year, in October, the absorption rate in Albuquerque for detached homes was 8.21. That means it would take, on average, 8.21 months for a new listing to sell. This October in 2012 the absorption rate shows us 6.68, a 1.53 month improvement!
Albuquerque home sales were reported this October and 2012 sales are up 18.9% from October 2011. This marks the 16th consecutive month of detached homes sales increasing! Also, pending sales were up 14% or the same month prior to last year.
This increase seems to defy the typical "Fall Crawl" of our Albuquerque homes market. I often am asked "Is now a good time to list my home?" My response has always been the listing your home during what some precieve as a slow real estate market often attracks a more serious buyer. Buyers looking for homes in the winter months usually need to get in a home soon. In other words its more af a quality vs. quantity situation.
Now, with the Albuquerque Real Estate stats mentioned above, this theory tends to be questioned. The numbers suggest that it is business as usual and people are excited about buying homes!
It usually starts with the initial dream of buying a home. The next step is hopping on the internet and searching the Albuquerque MLS for that perfect home. You see a few properties for sale in Tinnan Farms and then reality sets in due to price. Ok. I'm not giving up that easy! So you check out a few homes for sale in Ocotillo Albuquerque. Prices look good here. Now the excitement begins to gain momentum. Once you find the right home, you make the offer and it is accepted! Emotions are now in 5th gear! No one is going to stop you now. In fact, the only thing between you and the home of your presents dreams are your emotions. It seems so simple but emotions tend to find their way into the home buying processes and can destroy the processes.
There can be several emotions flying around a home deal at any given point. The best way to handle this is to always keep them (emotions) in check. Try to put yourself in the shoes of the seller. I know its cliche but it is very important to do. If the sellers aren't moving into their next home because they have decided its time to move up, chances are they are going through a serious life change (job transfer, lost job, lost loved one, ect.). Keep in mind that things probably aren't what they seem. If you need to, ask questions. You allowed to do that! Find out what is going on with the seller if, for example, all the sudden they seem unresponsive or their attitude changes for the worse. Also, do not let Reltor's emotions get in the way either. It is a pretty rare thing these days but Realtors can get a bit irritated as well (we are human, after all!). If any of these things happen, take a step back and regroup. Believe me, in the end it will be completely worth it!