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 🙂

Get Smart on Down Payments — Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®Finance – Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®

Chris GashPicking the right house is just one of the big decisions you’ll face when buying property. Deciding on the down payment is another. Low inventory in some national markets continues to pressure potential buyers into making bigger down payments to gain a competitive edge. But the possibility of rate increases in the coming year and new…

via Get Smart on Down Payments — Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®Finance – Real Estate News & Insights | realtor.com®

What successful home builders have in common

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Let’s say you have weighed your options and have decided to purchase a new home under construction or hire a builder to start from the ground up.

My best advise is to select a builder that will deliver your home as agreed, and maintain a working relationship with you before, during and after the sale.
I would like to point out that not all home builders can make every home buyer happy all of the time. Scheduling, availability of materials, weather and so many more issues factor into the job, so its easy for the process to get disrupted.
Buyers always have a concern about “quality” building, and that’s a genuine concern. Keep in mind that many inspections are done during construction by the local building department and sometimes even ordered by lenders to meet some financing requirements. With those consumer protections in place “quality” will likely be determined by the workmanship and the materials used.
Without getting into a very lengthy note I am going to jump to the two points every home buyer should discuss before entering into an agreement with a new home builder

  • 1. What is the builders policy regarding unfinished items, touch ups prior to closing and a new home orientation walk through to get familiar with the operation of your systems….and….
  •  What is the standard warranty offered by the builder

The most successful builders I have worked for have both of these details implemented into their company policy.

When you are walking through your new home on move in day it should be ready for you to hang your clothes in the closet and set your furniture in place.
Most states have a warranty period for workmanship and materials.  This comes with responsibility on the buyers part to file claims in accordance with the procedure and time limits set out in the law.
A well written warranty program offered by a builder is much better to work with and results will come faster and easier. You will also have manufacturer warranties for the appliances and systems in your new home.  Ask your builder to provide you with the information to register these items in your name. The warranty may also include any soil treatments for termites or other pests and how you can keep this in place for years to come.  There are also third party warranty programs offered by some builders that cover defects and structural issues.

To sum it up….you want a builder with a well written warranty and a turn key home…

Happy home shopping 🙂

FEMA link for area flood maps

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With much of the country falling within a flood hazard area there is a resource available to help you determine the zone of a location.

FEMA offers a link on their website that you can enter the full address or general location to view the flood map.

https://msc.fema.gov/portal/search#searchresultsanchor

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This tool can be very useful if you taking a mortgage because the lender will require a flood insurance policy for hazard areas.  It can also assist you in getting a quote for an insurance policy if one is necessary.

Happy home shopping….hoping this helps it stay easy…