Archive for October, 2011

Home prices in many cities are at all time lows and it’s time to make a move to buy. If you have children, a location near a good school district is preferable. Here are some steps I recommend (California):
1. Find a lender and get preapproved for a mortgage.
2. Find the area where you want to live.
3. Find out what time of home you really want and the style of the home. Going to open houses on the weekend can help you see various styles and floor plans.
4. Find a Realtor. The Realtor will show properties that fit your specifications and your price range.
5. The Realtor will structure your offer/bid on the property. Bring a check book, your preapproval letter, and be ready to make an offer.
6. Wait for the offer to be accepted by the seller. If your offer is not accepted, repeat steps 4 and 5.
7. You have 3 days to deposit your good faith estimate into escrow. Good faith estimates are generally 1-3% of the purchase price. This is a KEY component of the transaction because it assures the seller you will financially stay in the transaction.
8. The first 17 days after your offer is accepted is used to schedule and complete all inspections (home inspection, roof inspection, zoning, pool, etc.). The inspection(s) determine the condition of the property and find out if any repairs are needed. The seller should have a termite report available. If they do not, you, as the buyer, may order a termite report. Each inspection during this period is normally paid up front. Depending on the inspector they can take the money at closing. Inspections can range from $100 to $1000. Your Realtor should have suggestion for companies you can use. And the appraisal is completed during first 17 days.
9. An appraisal is a report, ordered by the lender, that lets the lender know the value of the property. The bank will not lend more than the value of the property. For example, if you offer $250,000 on a property and the appraisal states the value is $225,000. The bank will only lend you $225,000, no more.
10. After the first 17 days after your offer is accepted, your lender completes the financial part of the transaction.
11. Now you enter the closing phase of the transaction. Financial documents are signed at the escrow office (or by notary) and your lender places the money for the purchase in escrow.
12. Then the transaction is recorded with the county and you get the keys to your new house.

Talk to you soon. Leona Greenlow-Turner.


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Historically, harvest time meant reaping ripe crops and celebrating. After the harvest, it was time to plan crops for next year. In essence, plan what needs to be planted next year to make your desired income. This strategy works without a physical crop to harvest.

What are your financial plans for next year? With all the talk of economic downturn and Occupy (Insert City Here) protests, there is light at the end of the tunnel. I just came back from the Lone Star State, Texas, on sabbatical from my day-to-day life. (Yes, I missed all of you.) There was time enough to think about where I needed to be financially. My goals and current reality are not on the same page. How about you?

In most areas, pricing in the real estate market is at an all time low. Interest rates are super low across the board. Now is the time to figure who you desire to be in your financial life. If you want to own property, be proactive and save up, fix your credit to get a loan, and live your dream. Many are in a financial mess from no work, furloughs (forced time off from your employer), or debt piled to the ceiling. Bad times don’t last always. Write your vision down. Figure out what it takes to get there and move toward your vision.

I know some of you could have made better financial decisions; I know I could have. No better time than the present. Set your sites on better times ahead. The planning may take a while and that’s okay. Don’t be discouraged. Keep pressing forward toward your vision.

If you’re at risk of losing your home and loan modification is not an option, call me to start a short sale. This is a good step toward removing a problem situation and planning for future harvest.
• Vision
• Research
• Plan
• Start

If you or someone you know needs to buy or sell a home call me today. Talk to you soon. Leona Greenlow-Turner.

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