Does the HUD property come with a tool belt?

Lots of people want to buy a repo because they think they can get a good deal. Surely since it is a repo it is cheaper. It has to be a good deal–Sometimes, but sometimes not. What if the cost of the repairs plus the house are the same or near the same as the house down the street that doesn’t need repairs and has a traditional seller who can fix some of the things that an inspector finds wrong in the house. What is the value of your time? Do you have the tools and the skill to make some of the repairs yourself?
The very first house I ever bought was a VA repo. My husband and I were young and ambitious. We liked the house and knew we could improve it. Never mind the fact that we had never done anything like this before. Better yet, the loan we were getting was a special type of loan. The lender was loaning us an additional $10,000 to make the repairs either ourselves or with a contractor. Great. We went to the hardware store, asked a lot of questions and bought the supplies we needed to revive this house into our first home. After spending every night for a month or more working on this house, we requested a partial disbursement of the rehab money. What we didn’t realize was the rehab money didn’t cover things like hammers and saws (something we didn’t have prior to buying the house). And the cost of the repairs was more than we had originally thought. We messed up the kitchen floor and had to redo it, an additional expense. Finally the house was complete and we were able to move in. Unfortunately 7 months pregnant and out of money, the ac went out. The repairman quoted us $300 for an Acoil. We didn’t have $300 so we spent the summer in Omaha in the basement with a fan.
That was 1992. I brought my first child home to that house. We were transferred less than a year after we bought the house with the USAF, so we didn’t get to enjoy the home for a long time. We ended up renting the home for 4 years because there was not enough equity to sell the house and I refused to bring money to the table after all our efforts. I learned a lot from that experience and will always have fond memories of that year.
If you are looking to buy a repo or a house in general and want some help please feel free to contact me. I would love to help you.
Sandi Walker 405-213-2992 or visit http://www.sandiwalker.com

Real Estate

Buying a leased home

The house is for sale and currently leased. What does that mean for the buyer? In Oklahoma, the lease survives the sale of the property. Meaning if you are buying a home that has a tenant in it; I would advise you to request a copy of the lease as part of the purchase offer. If the tenant has several months left on the lease, are they willing to voluntarily nullify the lease early since the seller wants to sell? If not you may want to check with your lender prior to making an offer. Most of the time a loan made to an owner occupant will require the buyer to occupy the property within a minimal time frame after closing. If you are an investor and are planning on keeping the property as a rental, you will want to see a payment history from the current tenant, and move in check list, as well as the lease. If the current tenant is to remain in the property after the sale, a transfer of the deposit money will need to be made. This money is considered the tenants money and is held in escrow should there be damage and should thereby be transferred to the new owners escrow account.
Houses that have tenants currently residing in them can be a little more challenging to see because the realtors and the owners will need to abide by the landlord tenant act giving proper notification for view times and entry.
If you have additional questions, please seek the advise of an experienced realtor such as myself. You may contact me at 405-213-2992 or visit my website at http://www.sandiwalker.com


You want to buy a house?????

I often hear from people who would like to buy a home but don’t know where to start. They call off a sign or from an ad to ask the price of the home or for more information. They want to look at the property but really don’t know what else to do.
I tell them that the first thing they need to do is call a local lender and have their credit pulled to see if they qualify for a loan and in what amount. In addition, the lender will be able to tell them what type of initial investment is available. If the borrower does not have money to come to the table with, there may be alternative methods (grant, bond, or gift money) to pay the down payment. In addition, to the down payment there are fees associated with getting a loan called closing costs. It is possible that the contract to be written so the seller will pay the closing costs in behalf of the buyer.
After it is determined that the buyer can obtain a loan for an amount that the buyer can afford, then it is time to work with a realtor. A realtor can show any house that is on the market regardless of the real estate sign that is in the front yard. You realtor may also be able to represent you in a “for sale by owner” home, but be sure to contact your realtor rather than calling the owner directly. The realtor will represent your interest in the transaction and help you maneuver the paperwork, inspection, and any issues that may come up between contract to close.
A real estate transaction is a large purchase that contains a legal binding contract. It can be complicated. If you are interested in making a real estate purchase it is advised to hire a professional to assist you in your endeavor.
Sometimes I get questioned on how I as a realtor get paid. The listing realtor enters into a contract with the seller to sell the house for a commission. In return the listing agent offers a portion of the commission to the buyer’s agent to bring them a buyer. Therefore the buyer is not paying their realtor for helping them.
If you need help buying a home and would like some help please call me at 405-213-2992 or visit my website at http://www.sandiwalker.com.

Real Estate

Should I call the Realtor on the sign???

Buyer representation is very important in real estate.
Sometimes buyers just want to call sign to sign looking at homes. They think that using the realtor representing the property will net them the best deal, because that realtor will work hard to make the deal work and get the full commission rather than share it with another agent.
But the truth of the matter is a realtor cannot disclose confidential information given to them by either party. The seller is paying the commission and therefore the loyalties of the realtor representing the property most likely side somewhat with the seller.
A realtor can show any actively marketed home that is listed in the multi-listing service and can also represent a buyer in a for sale by owner transaction in the state they are licensed. A buyer’s realtor is can advocate for the buyer and can help them throughout the sale. They can pull comps and discuss whether or not the value of the property is in line with what the seller has it listed at. They can give the buyer advice on what to offer the seller, unlike the realtor representing the property.
I often tell people; using the same realtor as the seller is like using the same attorney as your ex in a divorce case. It may work out fine if everyone agrees but who is advocating for you. The realtor in that case would just be there to do the paperwork and not give advice. I guess if you have bought multiply properties, and just needed someone to write the paperwork and deliver it, this would be fine. But I find in a large transaction like this, most people want the advice of a professional. So do yourself a favor and hire a realtor to represent you and allow them to show you any and all properties that you have an interest.
If you have questions about real estate, please feel free to call me at 405-213-2992 or visit my website at http://www.sandiwalker.com


What is the value of my house?

It is said that something is only worth what someone else is willing to pay for it and so it is true in real estate. But when we list property we want and need to know what to expect the market will pay for the property prior to putting it on the market.
In order to determine the value of a home, we need to look at the comparable homes in the area. In a subdivision where the properties have relatively the same square footage, and floor plans it is not hard to find similar properties that have sold and based on condition, determine the value of a property. In addition to looking at the price per square foot, you also want to look at the actual price of the property in comparison to the other properties. If you have the largest house in the neighborhood then the price per square foot should be less than average, while the smallest house in the neighborhood will typically have a higher price per square foot. This is sometimes referred to as a floor and ceiling.
Properties that are unique or are in more rural parts of town become harder to determine value. But the premise is still the same. We want to find comparable properties within an area that have sold that distinguish value.
Some features add value to a buyer like a swimming pool, Florida room, shop, or storm shelter, but typically not at the value that the seller paid.
Buyers will sometimes go to the county assessor’s website to determine value. They believe that the value the county determines is accurate. Not true. This is the taxable value. It is used to determine the amount of tax revenue an owner pays. I have seen this number inflated as well as well below actual market value. I tell my buyers if the tax value is more than they paid for the property, they should dispute the value with the county assessor and lower their tax burden.
If you have questions about real estate, please feel free to call me at 405-213-2992 or visit my website at http://www.sandiwalker.com

Real Estate

I got the lowest rate and it cost me lots of $$$$

What is the cost of a loan? Most people want to know what the interest rate is on a mortgage, but what about the fees. It costs money to get a loan. There are typically lender fees including underwriting, doc prep fees, discount points, and origination fees. A lender may charge some fees at one rate and other fees at a different rate.
In order to compare loans between lenders or to know whether it is advisable to buy the rate down, the buyer must do the math. Here is a simple example to illustrate the effects.

If the discount rate is 1% to lower the interest rate ¼% and the difference in the payment is approximately $15 on a $100,000 loan, the buyer would divide $15 into $1000. In order to save $15 a month the buyer will have to live in the house 67 months before actually realizing any savings. If the buyer moves or refinances prior to the 67th month, the upfront fee he paid to lower the monthly interest payment was more than he would have paid with a higher rate.

Sometimes builders will pay closing costs when a buyer uses a preferred lender. This lender is someone who is familiar to the builder and that they may have negotiated lower fees. The interest rate should be competitive with other lenders. Of course, sometimes another lender will quote a lower rate that the preferred builder’s lender. But if the builder will not pay the closing costs when a non preferred lender is used, the lower interest rate may cost the buyer more money overall.

Example: If the closing costs with the non preferred lender are $2500 and the interest rate is ½% more making the payment an extra $30 a month. If the buyer pays there own closing costs, it will take 83.3 months or almost 7 years to recoup the $30 a month. If the buyer lives there longer than this then it makes sense to pay the money up front and take the lower monthly interest rate. However statistically we know most people move prior to realizing the benefits of the lower interest rate.
Always make sure you get a good faith estimate and understand which fees are controlled by the lender and which fees are third party fees. This way you can compare the complete cost of a loan.
If you need help with real estate questions, are looking to buy or sell please call me Sandi at 405-213-2992 or visit my website at http://www.sandiwalker.net

Real Estate

FSBO saves commission on sales

Recently I sold a For Sale by Owner aka FSBO house. The seller wanted to sell the property quickly and for as little cost as possible. The seller was willing to work with me as a Realtor if I brought a buyer, which I did. The sale went very smoothly and closed on time.
I am sure the seller was proud that she only paid half of the standard commission, since there was no listing agent. Of course I imagine she paid some advertising costs including that of the sign in the front yard.
But what did it really cost the seller to forego the advice of a licensed realtor who was knowledgeable about the area. Maybe the seller was simply looking for a quick sale by luring a buyer looking for a discounted house. But it has been my experience that if you price the house correctly, the house will sell in a reasonable amount of time without giving it away.
This property was in a historical part of our city that has increased in value over the past few years unlike some of the other parts of the market. It was in nice condition. The appraiser appraised the property for $10,000 more than the sales price. In our current market we are still having appraiser’s value property below sales prices. In addition, I showed comps that valued the property $30,000-$40,000 above the actual sales price.
So although the seller saved the commission, the actual amount money she put in her pocket may have been less than if she had hired a professional.
Hiring a professional licensed realtor to help you sell your home can potentially net you more money in less time. In addition, when you hire a realtor to sell your property, the realtor pays the marketing expense not you the seller. They also help you to price and negotiate the terms of the deal so you get the best price in the least amount of time. Most realtors only work with prequalified buyers so you have buyers looking at your house not window shoppers.
If you are considering selling your home, please contact me. I would love to help you market your house and get it sold for the most money possible. Call me at 405-213-2992 or visit my website http://www.sandiwalker.net