April 11th is the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act, Fair housing Title VIII

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The Fair housing Act was signed into law on April 11, 1968 by President Lyndon Johnson. The law prohibits discrimination in the sale, rental, or advertisement of residential dwellings, brokerages services, appraisals, real estate loans and loan purchases.  The 1968 law protected against discrimination based on race, religion, national origin and color.

Today the law has expanded to seven protected classes.  In addition to the original four, handicap, familial status and sex have been added.

The fiftieth anniversary is a great reminder to celebrate the diverse country we live in and how we have grown our communities together.  The opportunity to learn from each other has opened doors for many and helps promote economic opportunity.

Real estate professionals dedicated to providing equal service to all make the time to continually educate themselves to abide by law updates, but most of all “do the right thing”.  Real estate companies adhering to this belief prominently display the fair housing logo on their marketing materials.

Take notice and join in on the celebration…..

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Happy home buying and selling 🙂

 

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Own a “piece of the pie” with fractional ownership

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If you’re anything like me one of my favorite reading materials poolside is a local real estate magazine. Surrounded by beautiful properties and scenery I like to flip the pages looking for a dream deal.  Then it appears,
4 bedroom 3 bath ocean front view, newly remodeled, $2250000 for 25% ownership”….What’s that all about?
Unlike  time shares that offer ownership with many others , fractional ownership usually has less owners per property
25% ownership allows 13 weeks of use

Other advantages may be:

  • Accommodations are guaranteed at a favorite vacation destination
  • Terms of the purchase are easier to negotiate with fewer owners
  • You will have more input into the management of the property
  • Selling may not be difficult
  • Wear and tear on the property will be less with fewer owners
  • Shared expenses are easy to manage
  • You have an opportunity to invest in a property that may be out of your budget as a whole owner
  • Properties are usually spacious high quality homes or in smaller resort complexes
  • This is an option to consider when purchasing a second home if a fixed usage period is offered or a rotation that fits perfectly into your schedule.
  • If you’re looking to feel more at home with each visit you will want to look at a property that is unit specific for each use.
  • Find a great vacation home and purchase with family and friends

Since this type of ownership can be complicated and loaded up with stipulations the agreement to purchase or sell should be drafted by a Real Estate Professional or an attorney.  With limited financing options a method of payment should be stated before executing an agreement.

Happy home buying and selling….

Robot or Realtor? — Monday Morning With Matey

The future is upon us, but actually we are so behind, the future is here and some of us may be phased out entirely. What am I talking about? ROBOTS! Several companies, one in California, one in Brooklyn currently employ Bots to show real estate and take questions from Buyers. Artificial intelligence, programmed into the […]

via Robot or Realtor? — Monday Morning With Matey

Fur angels….

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As you prepare to get your home market ready, one of the most overlooked decisions concern your beloved deceased pets. Many times they are buried and adorned by a monument typically in a garden or under a tree in the yard. In a practical sense it may be a difficult task to take the pet if it was not laid to rest with the families intent to move them at a later date. You may find peace leaving the pet behind by having a discussion with the buyer and hoping they share in your sentiment. There is no right or wrong answer for this, it is a personal choice.

For all the buyers out there, chances are you will stumble across the monument after your purchase if the seller did not disclose this. If you are someone who would find this really “creepy” you may want to put this on your buyers check list, because it is very common. A sellers property disclosure may reference graves, or burial pits but I would not rely on the idea that the seller has a pet in mind, without the question being very specific it may easily get missed.

Some locations especially urban areas have restrictions concerning pet burials at your home, so it may be a good idea to check the  local ordinances should you find yourself in this situation. If you are often “on the move” cremation or pet memorial gardens are a good option, and will make things easy when you relocate.

Photo courtesy of: https://pixabay.com/en/cat-kitten-nature-sweet-cute-755812

Happy home buying and selling 🙂

Welcome to your “open house”

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While touring a home in the perfect location, with a grand slam price, and just the right fit the buyer says “it’s not for me”.  Without expressing any more interest, they are ready to move on to the next house on the scheduled showing list.
Or…..on occasion a homebuyer may ask to arrange a few hours in house at a later date to read or just sit in the living room.  It may sound silly but in both of these situations it’s about how the buyers feel and see themselves living in a house. It’s really not much different than test driving a car.
Home builders often use this strategy to sell homes. Onsite sales agents always encourage buyers to take a minute to relax in a model home after touring a community.  Large homebuilding companies and developers may offer a few days accommodations for prospective buyers visiting an amenity packed lifestyle community. Real Estate professionals host “open houses” that offer a low pressure sales approach creating a casual setting for the visitor. All of these scenarios create a buyer/house relationship, for better or worse.

Buyers always shop first for location, price and size, but as they think through the final list, how they felt in a house will be a top consideration. After all, its the cozy feeling that will make the house a home.

Happy home shopping 🙂

Photo compliments of:

https://pixabay.com/en/girl-room-woman-living-room-sofa-342839/

 

Selling or leasing a home built before 1978…bookmark this link

Most of us have lived in a home built prior to 1978 and never gave it any thought that our home could be a hazard to our health. I vision my younger sister standing on her tip toes over the window ledge trying to see outside.  Like most toddlers she chewed on it and most likely consumed paint chips that contained lead.

In 1992 congress passed a law that began in 1996 that states owners and landlords must disclose to buyers and renters any knowledge of lead paint, the possibility of lead paint, any test results for lead paint, provide a HUD required disclosure pamphlet and allow for a 10 day inspection period.

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Owners and landlords are required to attach the information to a lease or have a clause that states that the tenant or buyer has received the required disclosures. They are also required to keep this information for three years.  Because there are some exemptions you can read more about this at: https://www.hud.gov/program_offices/healthy_homes/enforcement/disclosure

For real estate professionals the responsibility falls upon you to inform your client of this disclosure and provide the forms to them.  It’s a good practice to keep the required disclosures on file to avoid this slipping by while processing all the necessary paperwork for a successful transaction.

The forms are  available at the HUD website:https://www.hud.gov/sites/documents/DOC_11884.PDF     

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/documents/selr_eng.pdf

Happy home selling 🙂

Tapping into your home equity….💰

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The market is recovering and as home values continue to go up you may find another resource to tap into for financial needs that may arise.

Sometimes referred to as a “second mortgage”, “equity line”, “home equity line of credit” or  advertised as a HELOC your home is an account that you can tap into.

There are a variety of terms offered by different financial institutions so I always suggest shopping around.  The amount of equity you will be allowed to borrow has many variables decided upon by the lender considering your ability to repay.

Here’s how they work…The equity in your home is the amount of money you have between the value and the amount you may own.

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HELOC’s offer great convenience because the interest rate is typically lower than that of  a credit card and you are not required to use the full amount approved for at the time of signing an agreement.  A second mortgage is for a specific amount drawn at one time and set up on an amortization schedule, so they are two different products.

An example of a good use for an equity line would be to do small repair or improvement to your property.  You can simply write a check for the service and  repay according to the terms of your line.

An example of a good use for a second mortgage may be to do a large home improvement such as a room addition or a purchase of an adjoining property.  These loans are set up with principal and interest payments, a specific schedule of repayment  without t as much flexibility as equity lines.

It is  important to know that these loans will have to be paid off when you sell your home, because you are pledging the property as security.

I have often heard from home sellers who review a purchaser offer that they will not receive enough money at the sale due to the pay off of a primary mortgage and the equity line or second mortgage.  If you find yourself in that situation you have to keep in mind that you even if you feel like you are selling at a loss you are not because you already received that money.  It’s best to track your homes value to keep yourself in a positive equity state at all times.  Here is one the many links online to get an idea of your value: https://www.lendingtree.com/homevalue#/HomeValue

Also, it’s been surprising to me that some home sellers do not realize that the line of credit was a lien on their property.  With that being said it would be wise to understand the terms in full before signing any agreement, also ask about any penalties that can occur when you close them out.

Homeownership offers more than just a cozy place to hang your hat :)get a

Recent tax law change take away the  interest deduction for home equity lines: for more information on this and mortgage interest in general: https://www.forbes.com/sites/timtodd/2017/12/28/the-modified-home-mortgage-interest-deduction/#668ee0c06acf