Make House-Hunting Easier

Knowing how much house you can afford is just a starting point in your search for a new home. By answering the following questions, you can narrow down what features are most important to you:

•    How many bedrooms and bathrooms do you need?
•    Do you want a new home or would you prefer an older one?
•    Are there special features you must have?
•    Is the school district a factor for you?
•    Do you want to be close to a shopping center?
•    Is commuting to work an issue? If so, how far are you willing to drive?
•    Will you accept any style of home? What about colors?
•    Do you want a fireplace, pool and/or air conditioning?

Searching for a new home can be overwhelming.
Here are a few tips to make it a bit easier!

•    Take a notepad and map with you. Save each home’s fact sheet.
•    Limit the homes you look at in one session to three so you can focus on the details.
•    Take a picture of the homes that appeal to you so you can remember their features.
•    Make sketches of floor plans to help you compare the homes you like.
•    Ask questions about any problems in the home before you make an offer.


I hope these tips help you find the home of your dreams!

Turning Warehouses into Creative Spaces

Hey everyone!

I just read this great article about turning warehouses into creative workspaces. Thought you would be interested!

Photos and renderings courtesy of Third & Urban

“As projects from south Grant Park to Inman Park and the Lindbergh area are proving, thoughtfully converted warehouse spaces are all the rage in Atlanta.

And there’s no sign of that activity stopping on the city’s western front.

The latest Westside “creative flex space” conversion was announced today for two 1964 warehouses along Menlo Drive, tucked off Huff Road in Blandtown, around the corner from AuthenTEAK furniture.

Totalling 80,000 square feet, the project will be called Inland Tract, according to developer Third & Urban, which is partnering with commercial real estate group Granite Properties.

Through a “strategic, long-term partnership,” the companies will also recapitalize a nearby Upper Westside project in a similar vein, Complex.

Read More

 

Important Tips for a Smooth Closing

When the time comes to close the deal on your new home, a lot of things are happening all at once. You can expect the real estate transaction and the financial transaction to close on the same day!

With that in mind, I wanted to share some tips to help you prepare for this exciting day.

 

•    Review Loan Documents in Advance – We will touch base in advance to prepare you for your loan closing. There should be no surprises at this point, providing we have locked in the interest rate for your loan to coordinate with the timing of your real estate purchase.

At the final closing, you will need to review every legally binding document carefully and make sure there are no typos or errors, and the loan terms are listed as we have discussed. Any typos or errors must be corrected prior to closing. We will go over each document with you, so you have a clear understanding of your financial commitment.

One important document you will be signing is the HUD-1 Settlement Statement. This document lists all the final credits and charges relevant to both you and the seller, based on the terms of your contract. You should receive this at least 24 hours prior to  your closing. Compare this to your Good Faith Estimate to make sure your rate and terms are written as you expected them to be. The lender is bound to honor the Good Faith Estimate for 10 days.

•    Be Prepared for Closing Costs – Prior to closing, you should know exactly what your closing costs are. It’s best to have a cashier’s check ready to pay your closing costs. (An electronic funds transfer could delay the process, depending on what time the transfer posts.) This includes any fees, taxes, charges and your down payment. Again, we will review this with you, so you have a full understanding of your closing costs. Don’t be afraid to ask questions! We’re here to help.

•    Make Sure Your New Home is Ready to Live In – When you do your final walk-through of the property, make sure all repairs have been made that were agreed upon and the home is ready to occupy. Otherwise, your Buying Agent can make additional negotiations with the Selling Agent to resolve any outstanding issues. Your final walk-through should be done before the final real estate closing documents are signed. Allow for at least 30 minutes to do your final walk-through.

Get to Know Your Credit Rating

While looking through some information regarding credit ratings, I thought you might find this to be interesting. Enjoy!

Bottom line- your credit report is very important when it comes to determining mortgage eligibility. The best thing to do is to learn what is on your report, determine what impact that information has on your credit rating, and work on repairing any damage or correcting any errors that may exist on your report.

There are three main credit bureaus to which most creditors (such as credit card companies, banks and leasing agencies) provide information. Each month, your credit holders report information to the credit bureaus regarding your current balance, minimum payment requirement, and payment history. It is best to make payments regularly and timely!

Some Tips for Easy & Inexpensive Upgrades!

Don’t wait until you’re ready to sell your home to make easy upgrades that you can enjoy today! Here are five inexpensive tips that will increase the curb appeal of your home immediately.

1.    Spruce up a room with a new paint job. An average room can be easily transformed for under $100. To get a quick estimate, Google your favorite home improvement center for a paint coverage calculator.

2.     Get a new mailbox made of quality materials. Depending upon the style that best suits your home, choose brass, iron, or other quality materials.

3.    Add quality door knobs made of brass, glass, or other suitable materials. You will appreciate the better quality each time you open a door. Future prospective buyers will also notice them as they go through your house.

4.    Replace that worn, dirty doormat with a fresh new one to add that extra touch to a potential buyer’s (or your) enjoyment!

5.    Bold street numbers made of brass, iron, ceramic or other quality materials make your home noticeable and easy to find.

All of these easy upgrades can be done with very little time and investment! And, please give me a call if there’s anything I can do for you.

Building Your Credit Tips!

1.) Hold Off Opening New Accounts

New credit ‒ including credit inquiries ‒ accounts for 10 percent of your total credit score. Any time you give written authorization to a lender to pull your credit report, it’s called a “hard inquiry.” This pertains to any application for an auto loan, student loan, new credit cards, bank loans, and so on. Each hard inquiry can cost you anywhere from 1 to 5 points. So, be sure to watch out for opening new accounts right before you decide to apply for a home loan.

2.) Pay Down Your Debt

Oftentimes, high credit utilization (the amount of debt you are carrying versus your total available credit) is the culprit for a low score. In those instances, paying down certain credit accounts could make you more creditworthy — and mortgage eligible — within short period of time.

3.) Keep Older Accounts Open

Older credit accounts help boost your credit score, so leave those credit cards open even if you don’t use them all of the time. It could be a mistake to close accounts that you use; risking good points they may be adding to your credit score. Try to use those credit cards every few months and pay the balance in full so that those cards remain active.

Staying Safe from the Rain at Home

The idea of owning a home is so exciting that sometimes we forget about the little things like repairs, until the storm comes. So here are a few tips to make sure you’re safe from extreme weather damage.

  • Check the paint on your home to make sure there isn’t any peeling. This will keep water out.
  • Check all of your windows for escaping air. Recaulking where needed will help with this.
  • Patch cracks in ceilings and walls.
  • Pressure wash your home exterior seasonally to prevent mold.

Following these steps before big storms will keep your mind off your home and leave you time for snuggling!

 

 

Fun Friday Facts

Hope everyone is looking forward to the weekend!! Please see some interesting facts about the world we live in.

1. Blueberry jelly beans were made especially for Ronald Reagan.

2. Checkmate comes from the Persion word “shah mat”, which means ‘the king is dead’.

3. The U.S. consumes more oil than any other country in the world.  In 2006, the U.S. consumed as much as the entire European Union and Japan combined.

4. No president of the U.S. has been an only child.

5. It takes seven shuffles to thoroughly mix a 52-card deck.

6. Picasso could draw before he could walk.

7. The first e-mail was sent in 1972 by Ray Tomlinson.  It was also his idea to use the @ symbol to separate the name of the user from the name of the computer.

8. The opposite sides of a dice cube always add up to seven.

9. One in ten people in the world live on an island.

10. The first daily broadcast was started by the BBC in November 1936.

11. The word “millionaire” was first used by Benjamin Disraeli in his 1826 novel Vivian Grey.

Happy Friday!!!

 

You can find more of these facts at https://lifelistsblog.wordpress.com/2008/12/12/34-fun-and-random-facts/.

 

 

New Years Resolutions

Now that the busy holiday season has past, we all look forward to the new year. Let’s start the year off with a quote.

The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret to getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks and then starting on the first one. ~ Mark Twain