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Kathy Lemons

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7 things to Know before you Buy the Backhoe

by Kathy Lemons

You just spend a lot of time online investigating, driving around, finding school information, looking into mortgage rates, getting fully qualified. After all that work and time, and just not able to find the right home. You have now started to think about building. How hard can it be anyway? Before you get the provervial shovel out, there is different information to gather. It's a different game, one that can be won. You just need to know the rules: 7 things you need to know. (Courtesy of U.S. News)

7 Things You Need To Know 

What are we doing for you?

by Kathy Lemons

 

In the past, real estate agents helped buyers find homes and sellers collected market activity to come up with value. 
With the invention of technology and the internet, todays home buyer or seller has the tools of every home for sale (even around the world), virtual tours, websites that have data at their fingertips as well as the speed of mobile sites with auto notification. 
The agent role has changed. We now at a very minimum 
1. accurately complete the multiple form sales contract
2. listen carefully to your needs and priorities 
3. provide expert guidance through the process
4. openly communicate with you during the entire process
5. educate and provide information that you need
6. coordinate and stay within the contract timeframes
7. alleviate the stress of the process
8. facilitate a smooth transaction
9. be accessible and communicate with frequent updates
10. provide paperless transactions

In the past, real estate agents helped buyers find homes and sellers collected market data to come up with value. With the invention of technology and the internet, todays home buyer or seller has the tools to find every home for sale (anywhere in the world), virtual tours, websites that provide information at their fingertips as well as the speed of mobile sites with auto notification. 

The agent role has changed. We now at a very minimum:

1. accurately complete the multiple form sales contract

2. listen carefully to your needs and priorities 

3. provide expert guidance through the process

4. openly communicate with you from start to finish

5. educate and provide information that you need

6. coordinate and stay within the contract timeframes

7. alleviate the stress of the process

8. facilitate a smooth transaction

9. be accessible and communicate with frequent updates

10. provide paperless transactions

If you are thinking can you call me with a questions? Yep. No obligation. I'll be here 

If you havent started yet, if you are a seller or buyer, here ya go.

Whats my home worth?

Is my home on the market now?

Cost vs Value Report

by Kathy Lemons

That is always the question I am asked when counselling a seller as they get their home ready to go on the market. Make sure you investigate where the best place is to spend your money to increase your value.

You want to avoid spending $1000.00 only to get back $650.00 when you sell.

Cost vs. Value reports are available every year. They will show the adjustments from year to year.

First, meet with your agent and listen to what they suggest. Agents preview a lot of houses, and they are aware of buyer comments and what to watch for in a home’s first impression. Also, you may want to consider using the services of a stager, not necessarily to transform everything in your house, but to work with what you've got and amplify the best use of your current furnishings.

Best use of time verses money is for you to clean and declutter your house for all its worth and I stress “worth” A good dose of elbow grease, scrubbing every nook and cranny is one of the lease expensive yet most productive things you can do to get your house ready for sale. The less “stuff” = more room. You don't need to completely depersonalize your house, but you do need to clear the decks. This is your time to shine! Get out the good china, it might seem kind of hokey to put out flowers and place settings in the formal dining room, but that stuff works.

Kathy Lemons with Top Gold Realty is a full time real estate broker licensed in Spokane Washington.

Spokane's Market Number on the rise

by Kathy Lemons

SPOKANE REAL ESTATE YEAR END REPORT


LAST YEAR 2016 SALES WERE UP both in number of sales and final sale prices (includes condos, single family homes on less than 1 acre). Comparing the number of sales 7,571 in 2016 up from ,892 in 2015.  That is a 9.9% increase. When comparing the average and median price, they are both up as well. The median closed price for 2016 is $195,000 compared to $179,000 in 2015. Up 8.4%. The average closed sale price for 2016 was $212,144 compared to 2015 $179,900. Up 7.4%
We are experiencing low inventory with a high buyer demand. The inventory as of January 31, was the number of listings – 1,153. That indicates we only have 1.7 months of inventory. Historically the Spokane Market will be heating up in the Spring. Good News! We are already seeing indicators of new listings available.

How Much Home Can I Afford to Buy in Spokane?

by Kathy Lemons

How much home in Spokane can you qualify for?

 

With all the new changes that the lenders have been required to make, borrowing money seems to be out of reach for many.  But since things have settled down, buyers have the courage to start looking once again.

You may have been working on credit issues. Saving for a down payment. Now you’re ready! Take Heart.

Eventually, you will need to talk with a lender and find out about any new programs that have come out in the past years. But until then, you can estimate on your own the payment you might qualify for. It’s based on your income and long term debts that may not have been completely paid off yet.

Lenders are looking at income to debt ratio. Debt is car payments and student loans and credit card payments and of course they will include a monthly mortgage payment.

There are mortgage calculators all over the internet which makes it easy to calculate how much a mortgage payment might be.

Once you find out what you qualify for, you will know what the maximum amount could be for a monthly payment. You then can determine what payment you would be comfortable to budget.

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Home buyers also need a down payment and the ability to pay closing costs. Down payments start at about 3% and typical closing costs will add up to about 3% of the loan amount. There are now many programs that can help with the closing costs and depending on the situation, some sellers can help with closing costs as well.

No matter when, any market has its challenges. Our first home was a struggle to buy, but we have never regretted it.

Home ownership can become a reality. You just need to start the process. Our Spokane spring inventory is already growing.

 

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Contact Information

Kathy Lemons
Top Gold Realty
12406 E. Desmet Ave. Ste A
Spokane Valley WA 99216
Mobile: (509) 939-1377
Business: (800) 347-0152
Fax: (509) 443-3309