What Opportunities Have You Missed?

Buying Stock in Apple Computer for less than $10 per share. Buying up farmland during the Great Depression. Building a website to connect your friends before some kid from Harvard did it first.

“I was seldom able to see an opportunity until it had ceased to be one.” – Mark Twain
The world is full of opportunities missed. Funny thing is, at the time they were readily available or begging for attention, no one seemed to care. Those who actually took action were often dismissed as crazy.
What opportunities have you missed recently? With uncertainty and negative sentiment surrounding the real estate market for several years, some recognized opportunity and secured very good deals. Now, the market has undergone a fundamental shift. Home prices are rising, and many sellers are again in the driver’s seat.

There’s still time to act. If you feel safer taking action only once the direction of the market has been established, then that time has come. Buying when values are rising can add great comfort and peace of mind to the process.
There’s still time to choose. We all need a place to live, and we usually have just two choices—to rent or own. Over the long haul, owning has proved to be one of the most fruitful paths to prosperity. Renting has done the same—for the landlord!
Still, the choice is yours. If you’re ready to seize the moment and secure your future now, opportunity looms large. A home purchase may not make you tomorrow’s next multi-billionaire. But it can do wonders for your pride, long term prosperity, comfort and stability.
Call us today 207-831-1903 to discuss opportunities the Brunswick, Maine housing market may hold for you!

Take action to buy a home for the first time.

We all know the old line about location. But buying a home takes research, research, research, too.

You will want to determine:

How much you can comfortably afford. The pre-approval process, which entails full documentation and credit check, is the best way to determine the numbers that are right for you. Early in your search, you can identify any potential hurdles and focus only on homes truly available to you.

How much cash you need to close. Knowing how much cash you’ll need to close and, ideally, consolidating those funds into one account will help to prevent stress and ease the process later.

What kind of property you really want. Single family, multi-family, condo, co-op, Victorian, Colonial, Cape, split, ranch, cottage, cabin, teepee…home types and legal distinctions are plentiful. Whether you are open to several styles or have your heart set on only one, narrowing your search will save time and prepare you to act when the perfect home hits the market.

Where you want to be and how long you’ll want to be there. You’ll want to strike a balance between buying what you can afford and buying what will accommodate your needs for longer than just the first few years. Assess your plans for growing your family and how your income might grow to match. Planning ahead is especially important in today’s market, when trading up tomorrow may mean both a more expensive home and a higher mortgage rate.

How the process works. This is a time when the Internet doesn’t have all the answers. The process varies for many reasons, including area and custom. Generally, purchases include: Offer, Acceptance, Inspections, Contract, Loan Application, Appraisal, Title, Loan Approval, Closing/Funding and Moving In. Many little steps can fall in between, and the process won’t always occur in a given order. It pays to speak with local experts early.

Reach out when you’re ready, and we’ll help you understand the nuances of your market today.

5 Reasons You Might Need To Consider Non-Traditional Financing

Private Money financing refers to loans collateralized by real estate, where the source of the funds used to close Real Estate transactions come from private investors.

The decision by the investors to make a loan is based primarily upon plenty of equity in the real property securing the loan thus reducing the risk of loss.

The ability to repay, and the borrower’s character is also considered along with how the borrower will pay the investor back in time.

Private Money loans are needed when a borrower or a property falls outside the standard underwriting rules of conventional lending sources like banks or other lending institutions.

The Primary Decision For Private Money Is Typically Based On The Simple ThreeFour Cs Of Private Money Lending:

  1. Capacity to repay the loan back
  2. Credit/Character of the borrower
  3. Collateral or property type

With risk of loss lessened, a loan may be a sensible deal from the Private Money Lender’s point of view, but it remains discarded to institutional lenders. To meet the continuing financing needs of these borrowers, an ongoing demand for private money has been created.

Mortgage brokers and bankers solicit and process these types of loans but the private investors are the ones that underwrite and close these private money loans.

After a loan request is processed and underwritten, the loan is funded by a loan investment product arranged by a Private Money Specialist. Private investments may come from individuals, entities, or pension funds. Your private money investor or a private servicing company will service each loan until it is paid off or the property is sold.

The Reason Why People Need Private Money:

1. Loss of bank loans, including denial due to:

• Use of cash out

• Not perfect credit

• Needing stabilized income

• No reserves

• Not operating with a bank account

• Debt ratios to high

• Property type or condition

• Borrower type (i.e. trusts)

2. Borrower’s election to avoid the excessive loan conditions of an institutional loan saving time

3. Private Money Lenders ability to arrange loans secured by property types unacceptable to Institutional lenders

4. Borrower’s circumstances make it difficult to obtain institutional loans

5. Property’s characteristics make it difficult to obtain an institutional loan

If any of these scenarios sound familiar to you or you need more information about Private Money Loans contact me directly and I will help answer questions about Private Money loans.

Know Your Real Estate Disclosure Laws Before You Sell Your Home

 

When deciding to sell a piece of Maine real estate, there are certain things you must disclose about the property to the buyer before the sale can go through.

Disclosure laws are put in place to protect the buyer from unknowingly purchasing defective property. Not disclosing certain information about the property can jeopardize the sale, or worse, invite a lawsuit.

This has become more of an issue lately as some sellers are tempted to gloss over deficiencies in the home they are selling in order to try to get a higher sales price.  In fact, a recent poll of real estate agents showed that 75% of agents ranked non-disclosure among the “top three current and future issues.”

What You May Need To Disclose

The main items that need to be disclosed are any defects with the home. This includes, but is not limited to, plumbing problems, water leaks, cracks in the foundation, insect infestations and toxic materials in the home — such as lead, asbestos, carbon monoxide or mold.

Be sure to fully disclose anything that may be pertinent to the buyer before purchase. Some disclosure laws include reporting issues with neighbors and whether the home has a criminal or notorious past.

If you are unsure about some information regarding your real estate, one option would be to state that you do not know that specific information. Remember though, if you knowingly withhold information, it may cause the sale to fall through or could be used against you in a lawsuit.

Does It Make Sense To Have A Pre-Inspection Done?

Sellers can also have their home inspected prior to placing the property on the market to prevent any surprises of unknown problems with the home. This way, defects can be fixed before listing the property, and the disclosure form can state the problem has been fixed. Buyers will almost surely want an inspection prior to closing, and a pre-inspection may suffice.

Disclosing information does not mean the seller needs to fix the problem. Any disclosed problems with the real estate can become a negotiation point. Remember, the most important thing is to be honest about any known issues with the property.

Real estate disclosure laws may be different depending on the state in which you live. The best way to know what you need to disclose in your area is to check with your trusted real estate agent or property attorney and discuss any potential property issues with them before you fill out the seller disclosure form.

3 Tips To Sidestep These Common FHA Loan Hang-ups

FHA loans are becoming increasingly popular these days as potential homeowners are not able to qualify for mortgages from traditional lenders. The FHA insures these high-risk loans, in turn allowing borrowers with low down payments and less than perfect credit to purchase homes and bolster the housing market.

However, getting through the loan process with the FHA is more difficult than with a traditional lender, and you may need to cope with some of these common loan hang-ups.

Property Condition

You can’t buy just any property with a FHA loan. The appraiser must deem it to be livable, without any conditions that could jeopardize health or safety. If the home has chipping paint, a leaky roof, or a wobbly banister, the financing could fall through.

Sometimes you can get the seller to make the needed repairs to pass inspection, but in other cases, you may have to go an alternate route. The FHA 203K streamline loan allows you to borrow up to $35,000 over the purchase price of the home for repairs and updates. It’s important to check with your local mortgage lender to determine any specific local FHA 203k loan details.

Low Appraisal

In addition to inspecting the property, appraisers also estimate its market value. These estimates are based on the property’s features and a comparison to similar properties that have sold recently. If the appraisal is low, the FHA loan funding could fall through because the FHA will not let you borrow more than the home’s appraised value.

Rather than trying to scrape together a bigger down payment, just take the information to the seller to renegotiate the purchase price. The seller will likely recognize that other buyers would be in the same boat, leading the seller to agree to a lower purchase price.

High Debt-to-Income Ratio

Your FHA loan may encounter a snag in the underwriting process if your total debt payments, including your new mortgage, would be a high percentage of your income.

Often you can make up for a high debt-to-income ratio with other compensating factors, like a larger down payment or a cash reserve of several months of mortgage payments. For more information on common FHA loan hang-ups feel free to contact your trusted mortgage professional today.