Friday, August 17, 2012

All the Single Ladies! SF Looking for Affordable Townhome in WBL or Hugo

Going solo on a home purchase for women is a trend in today’s real estate market. It’s not surprising to me. As a REALTOR® with over a decade of experience in the north and east Twin Cities metro, I know several self assured women who have leaped off of the home-buying fence and purchased a home on their own. And believe me, age does not matter. Women in their 20’s and on up into senior years buy homes without a male cosigner. In fact, the WSJ online reported that single women now outpace single men in home purchases.

What type of home is the best option for someone buying solo? The sky is the limit!! If my single gal friends and clients are any indication of what single buy, it really is as diverse as any other segment. I have one friend in her early fifties who started with a west metro condo in her late 20’s but traded it for a brand spanking new townhome in Roseville a few years later. She wanted more of a backyard for her pets but didn’t want the yardwork that came with owning a single family home.

Another female friend of mine wasn’t afraid of a little home maintenance and purchased her family home while in her mid-thirties. She loved the MacGroveland area of St. Paul where she grew up and wanted to keep the turn-of-the-century treasure in the family.

Even senior buyers don’t always shy away from maintenance, while many senior women will opt for a townhome or condo when downsizing, I know another tenacious gal who was 60 years young when she bought a 4BR two story in Maple Grove with a full basement workshop to do projects in.

Single Gals (and Guys) should listen upRenting might not be the best financial option today for those who live in the north and east Minneapolis/St Paul metro. Homes in many communities are amazingly affordable….and you don’t have to settle for a rundown foreclosure either. There are new and existing townhomes and single family homes in all price ranges in communities like Blaine, Hugo, White Bear Lake, Oakdale, North St Paul and Shoreview. Combined with the unbelievably low interest rates that people are locking now (30 year loans at under 4% in some cases!), it is unfortunate if someone (man or woman) is too intimidated to go it alone.

Buying a home does not have to be intimidating. Finding a good REALTOR® who listens to what you want in a home and guides you through the process step-by-step is key. I have assisted many people—single men and women, couples and families—find their perfect place to call home. (Check out some of the testimonials I have received.)  I have outlined the home buying process in a simple, Homebuyer Success Guide and that I quickly email out to any potential Twin Cities homebuyer that asks for one. (you can request one using the link below). I also happily answer my cell phone when a new potential buyer calls with a question. We can organize a game plan to get you qualified and start your search for the best home options that fit your needs, wants and budget. Don’t let being single keep you out of the one of the best real estate buying opportunities in years.

Copyright 2012

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Amazing Anoka County Acreage Foreclosures: Home Sweet Home on a Budget!

Looking for a foreclosure, bank-owned or short sale but need to be able to live in the home immediately after closing?

It's time to stop thinking of foreclosures as a dumpy, unmaintained home that will sit on the market waiting forever for someone to write up a lowball offer! In many instances, that is absolutely NOT the case. People are snapping up deals all over Anoka County on acreage foreclosed homes that are in awecome condition and priced to sell. Some are bank-owned foreclosures but many are sellers just pricing their homes properly to sell in this changed real estate market. As a buyer, you have to be ready to see a home as soon as it lists as the good homes are selling FAST! Also, buyers must be aware--The best homes are getting MULTIPLE offers the day they list!

Here are a few Anoka County homes that I noted that sold in DAYS:
  • Blaine 2003 built townhome near Tournament Players Club. Perfect 3BR with 2 baths and garage stalls listed at $110K. Sold in 1 day.

  • Coon Rapids Classic 1956 3BR rambler with 1/2 acre yard in move in condition. Bank owned price at $69.9K sold in 10 days.

  • Coon Rapids 1998 built 2BR/2BA/2car townhome with whirlpool bath and built-in entertainment center. Listed at $80K and sold in 9 days..

  • Ramsey 1992 built, 4BR/2BA split w/kitchen appliances and family room w/wet bar and wood stove. Listed at $97.5K sold with multiple offers in 7 days.
This economy has home builders and responsible homeowners alike to let amazing properties go back to the bank. Many are still in excellent condition. Some may require a bit of cleanup or a few cosmetic changes but there are houses that are move-in ready too.

There are more deals out there too…Here are a few of the treasures I noted on the Twin Cities MLS in Anoka County today:
  • Bankowned Anoover 4 level 3BR/2BA 4 car  built in 2002 listed for $216K...jacuzzi tub and gas fireplace too! Home originally sold without finished basement for $270K 
  • 1995 Built Blaine Townhome with 2BR/3BA/2Car near TPC golf course for $104,900...Previously listed at $180K. A price drop of $75K!
  • 5BR/2BA/3Car on wooded 1/2 acre lot in Blaine on located across from playground with a tax value of $208K.
  • Cute 2BR/2BA/2Car Centerville townhome built in 1998. Sold for $167K in 2004 now lender bargain price is $89,900.
  • 4+Acres and Polebarn in Columbus A 3BR/1BA/2Car 1967 rambler  with original hardwood. Previously listed at $350K bank priced at $179,900.
  • 5Bedrooms on almost 5Acres in Columbus New stainless steel appliances and carpeting in this 1987 built 4 level. Original list price was $295,000 now lender bargain price is $232.9K.
  • Ham Lake Executive Two Story on 4.5 Acres! 4BR/4BA/3Car treasure corner whirlpool tub and custom built-ins throughout home. Originally sold for $620K in 2004. Bank listed at $429K
If you are in the market for a great deal on a foreclosed home, get your ducks in a row because homes are being offered at rock bottom prices. Here are a few tips for those considering offering on a foreclosed home.
  • Be Prepared for Multiple Offers! Well priced foreclosed homes get multiple offers. Serious buyers put in their best bid first and quickly. Every offer I have submitted on a bank-owned home in the past year has had to compete in a multiple situation and sold for MORE that it was listed for in the MLS. Expect this trend to continue as inventory is low and interest rates are very attractive.
  • Banks LOVE clean offers. Buyers MUST be preapproved with credit checked and employment and funds verified. Documentation must accompany the offer or it won’t be considered.

  • Banks will reject lowball offers…no negotiation. They are a business and know the value of the asset they are selling.

  • Banks sell homes AS-IS. What you see is what you get. In most cases repairs will not be made.

  • In most cases a banks will not pay for inspecting the septic system or well. Those will be the buyer’s responsibility along with all other inspections. If you chose to inspect the septic or the county requires a septic compliance test, expect to pay $400-$500 for this inspection. A well test will run around $150. A whole house inspection is $350-$500. (The exception to this rule is the communities where there is a point of sale inspection requirement.)

  • Personal property is not included as part of the sale. So if the appliances are at the home when you close, they are a bonus. The bank will not remove. But they don’t guarantee will remain at the home or that they are in working order. This means if someone breaks in the home prior to the closing and takes them, the bank will not replace.

  • Having your own REALTOR® to represent your interests is essential. The listing agent is under contract to represent the bank. In many cases, the bank will not allow a dual agency so if a buyer contacts the listing agent to write the offer, the buyer does not have representation. This means all of your information goes to the bank…the listing agent is required to tell the bank everything that you say about your financing and the amount you are able or willing to pay. But the agent is not required to tell you anything in return. The agent works only for the bank.

 Copyright 2012