Posts Tagged ‘First time home buyer’

Follow Up to 10 Step Guide to Buying a Home; Part Two

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014

Part Two:

#6 Get Funding

This one seems a bit out of place to me, seems it should be under #3 Get a Mortgage Pre-Approval. If you choose a home then decide to figure out what type of loan etc, you may find the differences in loan programs you qualify for might eliminate that home from consideration. For instance, just a few short years ago, FHA loans were extremely popular because of the low down payment and low mortgage insurance. Now, with all the recent changes in lending FHA is becoming much less popular because the mortgage insurance is now flipped and is outrageously expensive compared to conventional loans.

So sure, you could do an FHA loan with 3.5% down, but may end up with an additional $200/month; that could easily change things up for you. And if you go the conventional route instead, now on that $350,000 home you need an additional $5,250 down to avoid the high FHA Mortgage Insurance and possibly more in closing costs as well…do you have that? Can you afford the $200/month extra?

When you do step #3 and get approved, you should know what type of loan, down payment, mortgage insurance (often financed in now by the way) etc that you’re going to go with.


McDonald Group Real Estate Trends: It’s Still a Buyer’s Market in Portland

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

The latest market report for the Portland Real Estate market shows a steady level of continued price reductions on homes for sale around the Portland Metro area. Back in August we talked here on the McDonald Group Real Estate blog about the Portland Business Journal article stating that thirty-two percent of Portland homes for sale in early summer experienced at least one price reduction, ranking  Portland No. 16 on Trulia’s list of price reductions in America’s 50 largest cities. Those numbers are sticking around.

A buyers market is one in which there are more homes available that there are people ready and willing to purchase them. With so many options to choose from in the Portland Real Estate market, buyers have the opportunity to pick up ridiculous deals on homes for sale in Portland that would otherwise be snapped up for much more. The buyers market means more options, lower prices, and higher competition amongst sellers, which makes homeowners and Portland real estate agents more willing to compromise and negotiate price reductions on all types of homes.

Signs of a buyers market in Portland are everywhere – this is the time to upsize or move into a more desirable area, as there are literally hundreds of gorgeous homes at rock bottom prices, including luxury foreclosures, high-end short-sales, bank-owned homes, and affordable listing prices on homes priced well below their previous market value. A balanced buyer/seller market has around 5 or 6 months of inventory. The Portland Real Estate market is currently just below 11 months. If you’re trying to sell a home in Portland, you’re going to need to price competitively and think about upgrades to make your house more attractive to the increasingly savvy buyers. The average sale price in the Portland Real Estate market is around $297,000 and homes for sale in Portland typically stay on the market for around 121 days. There’s really no good way to tell how long this buyers market will last, so be sure to take advantage of these record low prices, record low interest rates, and the amazing supply of affordable dream homes out there on the Portland Real Estate Market.


Portland Realtor Guide: NEW Buckman Neighborhood Profile at Your Road Map to Home

Friday, August 20th, 2010

Check out the new neighborhood profile detailing the neighborhood of Buckman in Southeast Portland, filled with quirky culture, classic Old Portland homes, and some of the best dining and shopping in town. The Buckman neighborhood is progressive and proud, and provides easy commuting access downtown via the Burnside, Hawthorne, and Morrison bridges. Buckman includes parts of two of the most popular retail districts in town, Hawthorn and Belmont Streets, complete with vintage stores, great brunch spots, and open parks.  Combining the best of urban accessibility and comfortable, small-neighborhood atmosphere, Buckman is quintessential Portland.

If you’re looking for homes, condos, or other real estate in Buckman or other Portland neighborhoods, check out this information page filled with the best restaurants nearby Buckman, top hikes and green spaces, and neighborhood resources. Relocating to a new area can be hard, but it’s a lot easier when you’ve got the best real estate agents in Portland on your side.

Contact the McDonald Group realtors to find out about homes for sale in Buckman, or Click here for more information!


Portland Real Estate Trends: Homeowners Slashing Prices

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

In a report published in the Portland Business Journal yesterday, we learned that thirty-two percent of Portland homes for sale, listed since the beginning of this month, experienced at least one price reduction. That ranked Portland No. 16 on the website Trulia’s list of price reductions in America’s 50 largest cities.

The average reduction for Portland homes was 9 percent, just under the national average of a 10 percent reduction on 25 percent of newly listed homes. With historically low interest rates, cutting-edge sustainability renovation rebates and low remodeling costs, and a high supply of beautiful homes for sale with great Walk Scores, this is a perfect time to grab a great deal.

As Scott McDonald of the McDonald Group said back in June, “We all know mortgage rates are low right now, but Freddie Mac really put a light on it by saying they are currently lower than they have been since they began tracking this data in 1971 and states the last time they were this low was in the 1950′s. Yup, the economy stinks right now, but if you’re in a position that’s somewhat insulated from economic trends and are thinking of buying a home, now really is the time.”


So What is the Deal with that First Time Home Buyer Tax Credit?

Wednesday, November 4th, 2009

moneySo it seems there was some progress made this week on extending the home buyer tax credit; this is great news because I have some first time home buyers that can’t close before 12/8/09 (in case I have clients reading this, no it’s not your loan unless your initials are BA- I don’t want to unnecessarily panic anyone I’m currently working with).

Anyhow, it “looks” like this: Tax credit extended through end of June 2010, requiring that the home buyer be in contract by 4/30/10. Move-up buyers as well as “first time buyers” would qualify for a credit. The first time home buyer the $8,000 credit and the move-up buyer (having lived in their current residence for five of the prior 8 years) a $6,500 tax credit.

This is still up in the air of course and I have not yet been able to determine exactly how the move-up buyer is defined but overall this is good news. I think this is truly the last chance to take advantage of this credit. I have heard that this extension would have a decrease in the amount of credit earned as the June 2010 date approaches but don’t quote me. -Kristie McDonald -The best first time home buyer agent in Portland! (next to Scott of course!)


First time home buyers; time is running out to get your tax credit!

Saturday, September 12th, 2009

timeSo I was discussing with a client today when she should have a home picked out, negotiated and in escrow to ensure she gets the tax credit when I realized, we’re less than 3 weeks away from what I consider a safe bet, September 30th.

You may be thinking “wait, I thought November 30th was the deadline?”…It is, but in case you didn’t know you have to be closed on the transaction and have keys in hand by that date. Additionally lending / escrow usually takes about 30 days from the time that you make an offer, go through negotiations, inspections, lending requirements etc to close. Because of the expiration of the tax credit though we’re anticipating a last minute rush from first time home buyers and we’re seeing it starting now. What this means is it’s not just possible, but likely (and again, we’re seeing it already) that lending time frames are going to go from 30 days, to 45+ days and possibly even up to 60 days. So if you think you’re safe getting something in escrow by say October 25th; think again – the deadline would more than likely come and go while you’re in escrow and POOF, no tax credit.

What I see as a safe date is September 30th and the reason is that if lending time frames do increase significantly over the next few weeks being in escrow by September 30th would ensure you have a full 60 days to close…Now, obviously there’s a good chance you would close earlier than that, but there’s an equally good chance you may just barely close in time for the deadline too and wouldn’t you rather be closed with time to spare than find yourself having paid the $300-400 for an inspection and $400 for an appraisal just to find out that you are going to lose the $8,000 Uncle Sam would have given you?

Also, there is talk of extending the tax credit and speaking strictly in the realm of real estate (political views aside), we would like to see it extended; it’s moved homes for sure! BUT, we’re also hearing that since the economy seems to be recovering, slowly but surely, and the folks in Washington apparently have other things on their mind, they may not extend it; so this could be it.


Coldwell Banker’s CEO Pushing for a New Tax Credit for Home Buyers

Friday, August 7th, 2009

cb-3d-logoJim Gillespie has appeared on several shows talking about the market…. his most prominent topic of discussion is the push for a new credit for the upward home buyer, a credit for $15,000.  Although I completely agree that we need an incentive to get home buyers to purchase their next stage home (a home in the next price bracket above the first time home buyer) I disagree that it should be a set $15k.  I think the smartest incentive we can offer would be one based on a percentage of the home sale; this would encourage ALL home buyers in all levels of income a reason to “make a move” (pun intended). 

Regardless, I appreciate that Jim is speaking out and taking a lead; the majority of transactions we’re seeing in Portland is the 1st time home buyer in the $200,000 and under range. And although you’d think the sellers of those homes would be “moving up”, I’d say that 90% of the homes I’m showing under $200,000 are vacant…. nobody is moving up if they’ve already gone. -Kristie McD.  Your Portland, Oregon Realtor


So Does This $8,000 Tax Credit Mean a Check?

Tuesday, February 17th, 2009

man1There’s a lot of confusion as to what exactly the Homebuyer tax credit means to the home buyer. Check out the link below but in a nutshell it means (more…)

A GREAT Buy and Fix That House Up LOAN

Sunday, January 18th, 2009

It’s not necessarily new but it’s been modified and lenders are excited to put it to work!  I believe it’s referred to as the “203K FHA rehab loan”.  I’m still learning the details but it sounds like it’s tailored to help those buyers out there that are wanting to purchase homes that are in need of cosmetic repair. I believe the amount (more…)

New Mortgage & Lending Information Page

Thursday, December 18th, 2008

We have several resources on our site for buyers but nothing really detailed about lending, credit issues, points etc until now. Obviously there are a lot of sites on the internet that provide this information however we find most of the information out there is either sporadic bits and pieces here and there or far too extensive and confusing or just a page with limited information and riddled with ads. So in an effort to provide a “one stop” mortgage and lending information page for our clients and website users we put together the following page: (more…)

First Time Home Buyers. Too Picky?

Monday, August 25th, 2008

An interesting survey was released by Coldwell Banker recently in regards to the expectations that the first time home buyer has when chosing their first home.  In general I tend to agree with the survey (more…)