Sweet Home Carolina Realty Blog

Feb. 21, 2018

Mortgage Rates Predicted To Rise In 2018. If You Want To Buy, Now Is The Time

Buying a home is about to get a lot more expensive.

According to a recent report from Freddie Mac, mortgage interest rates are predicted to rise in 2018. The rate for a 30-yr fixed-rate mortgage was 3.9% in Q4 of 2017, and it is forecasted to jump an entire percentage point to 4.9% by the end of 2018.

A percentage point might not seem like much, but it makes a huge difference in how much you'll pay for your home over the length of your mortgage. If you took out a $350,000 30-yr fixed rate mortgage, your monthly payment at 3.9% would be $1650.84. At 4.9%, it would be $1857.54 - and you'd pay a whopping $74.413.73 more in interest over the course of the loan.

If you're thinking about buying, now is the time to do it. If you push off buying a home until later in the year, you're likely going to face significantly higher mortgage rates - and end up paying tens of thousands (or even hundreds of thousands) of dollars more for your home than you would if you made the purchase today.

Posted in Buying, Mortgages
Jan. 24, 2018

Why Now Is The Time To Buy

 

1. INTEREST RATES ARE SOARING

If you haven't been keeping up with the real estate market, you might be missing out on the data around interest rates. They are going up, and they are going up fast. 5% may not seem like a lot, but can be the difference between hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars on what you are paying out towards your loan on a monthly basis. Would you want to pay an extra $200 towards interest for your loan each month, or would you prefer to pocket that $200? Well we know the answer to that. 

Buying a home now while interest rates are at a low is going to be an advantage, both now, and long term. Take advantage of today's rates and purchase a home that doesn't cost you extra just because of interests.

2. HOME PRICES ARE INCREASING

Have you been hearing about folks complaining in your market about the price of homes going up? Well those prices are going to continue climbing. A home that is $200,000 now, could go up to $400,000 in 10 years because of market conditions. We also are aware that wages are not increasing as steadily as the cost of living. Purchasing a home in today's market can get you a bigger and better deal on a house than if you were to wait a few years. Especially in hot city markets, where prices are virtually guaranteed to sky rocket, making a move now can save you hundreds of thousands. 

3. COMPETITION IS GETTING BIGGER

Population growth is a real thing, and with more people, comes more competition for homes. Homes are selling faster, which means a high demand increases home prices. Buying your home now, while the competition isn't as strong as it could be 5 years from now, helps you get a better deal on the home you want now then if you were to wait it out. 

So, in conclusion, the ball is in your court in today's market. There isn't ever a better time to purchase then now. Avoid the competition and the increase in fees and prices, and take advantage of a market that is still in the buyer's favor.

 

Jan. 16, 2018

Historically Low Inventory Creates Perfect Storm For People Wanting To Sell Their Home

 

According to Realtor.com’s recent Housing Shortage Report, the US is experiencing the worst inventory shortage in two decades. And while this presents a definite challenge for people looking to buy a home, it creates the perfect storm of opportunity for those wanting to sell. According to Realtor.com’s research, the housing shortage can be attributed to the baby boomer generation being unwilling to sell in the current market. In fact:

  • 72% of existing homeowners over the age of 55 feel their current home fits their needs
  • 85% of those baby boomers don’t plan to sell their home in the next 12 months

Boomers are keeping approximately 33 million properties off the market — a huge contributor to the historically low inventory the US is experiencing. But this historically low inventory means that there couldn’t be a better time to sell. Low inventory means more competition, and more competition typically means higher offers and a better deal for sellers — especially if you’re selling a starter home. Thanks to millennials entering the homebuying market for the first time, starter homes are the most in demand selling point on the market. And since they experienced a 17% decrease in supply from 2016 to 2017, a great starter home will be an even hotter commodity in 2018.

The Takeaway

Low inventory can be a problem for buyers. But if you’ve been thinking about selling your home, low inventory means there’s never been a better time to put your property on the market.

Posted in Selling
Dec. 30, 2017

Buying or Selling in 2018? 5 Reasons to Resolve to Hire a Pro

  • As we usher in the new year, one thing is for certain… if you plan to buy or sell a house this year, you need a real estate professional on your team!
  • There are many benefits to using a local professional!
  • Pick a professional who knows your local market and can help you achieve your dreams - Sweet Home Carolina Realty can help you do just that!  
Posted in Buying, Selling
Nov. 16, 2017

8 Great Real Estate Quotes

Nov. 15, 2017

Paint Finishes

 

Ready to paint your home? Be sure to use the right finishes in each room and feature to make

the best impact in your home. Using the wrong finishes can backfire for home owners if the

wrong ones are used in the wrong spaces. Below, you'll find the most common finishes and

recommendations on where they are best applied to.

 

                                                  - PAINT FINISHES - 

 

Flat is a low-sheen paint with a non-reflective finish that touches up well and hides minor

surface imperfections.  It's ideal for low traffic areas, interior walls and ceilings.

 

Matte has a low luster reflective finish that is durable, easy to clean, touches up well, and

also hides minor surface imperfections. It is great for low to moderate traffic areas, such as

bedrooms, and interior walls.

 

Eggshell Enamel has a soft, velvety appearance and is a good choice for moderate traffic

areas such as living rooms.

 

Satin Enamel if you desire a pearl-like appearance, and are painting moderate to high traffic

areas or areas that have some exposure to moisture, such as kitchens.

 

Semi-Gloss Enamel if you desire a sleek, radiant sheen that is great from cabinets and trim,

high-traffic areas and high-moisture areas.

 

Hi-Gloss Enamel creates a brilliant, shiny appearance with a glass-like finish. This is great for

high-use surfaces

 

 

Posted in Home Design
Nov. 12, 2017

3 Common Fears Of First Time Home-Buyers… And How To Overcome Them

Buying your first home can be one of the most exciting experiences of your life. But it can also be one of the scariest. Buying real estate is a complicated process. And if you've never purchased a home before, the fear of all those unknown variables can make the experience stressful, frustrating, and downright terrifying. If you're thinking about purchasing a home but are dealing with the fear that comes along with it, don't worry! You're not alone. Most first time home-buyers deal with a certain level of fear as they get ready to buy their first home. But that fear doesn't have to hold you back. Here are three of the most common fears of first time home-buyers (and how you can overcome them).

"I can't afford to buy a home."

via GIPHY

The number one fear most first time home-buyers struggle with is the fear they can't afford to buy a home. But while there are certainly people who aren't in the financial position to purchase a home, becoming a homeowner isn't as expensive as you might think — and sometimes all it takes to be able to buy a home is a little budgeting. If you're worried about being able to afford a home, it's time to take a good, hard look at your finances. Make a list of all of your monthly expenses and all of your debt. How much are you spending per month on living expenses? How does that compare to how much you'd be spending per month on living expenses if you were to purchase a home? How much are you saving each month? Are there any opportunities to cut back on spending and pad your savings a little more each month? How much debt do you carry and what's your plan to pay it down? Getting a firm understanding of your financial situation will a) give you a better idea of how much you can afford to comfortably spend on a house, and b) help you come up with a plan to get there.

"My credit isn't perfect. How am I ever going to get a loan?"

via GIPHY

If you have less-than-perfect credit, a major fear you might be dealing with is how you're going to get a mortgage. Many first time home-buyers fear that their credit report might hold them back from securing a loan. But while getting a mortgage with not-so-hot credit can be a challenge, it's certainly not impossible. First things first: if you're thinking about purchasing a home, you need to get a copy of your credit report. According to an FTC Report , 1 in 5 Americans have a mistake on their credit report — and those mistakes can end up costing you in the long run. The lower your credit score, the higher your interest rates will be, so it's important to make sure there's nothing inaccurate on your report that's dragging down your score. Once you've reviewed your credit report, you'll want to do everything you can to bring up your score before you apply for a loan, like pay down any high credit card balances, which will bring down your credit utilization and bump your score. You'll also want to make sure to pay all of your bills (including your rent and utility bills) on time, which will help show lenders that you're responsible with your debts. If you do all of these things and still get stuck with a high-interest mortgage, it's not the end of the world! You can always continue to work on increasing your credit score and refinance in the future.

"I have no idea what I'm doing. How am I supposed to successfully buy a home?"

via GIPHY

As mentioned, buying a home is a complicated process. From getting to know the market to finding the right kinds of properties to negotiating with sellers, there's a lot to handle. And if you've never purchased a home, it can feel overwhelming. The sense of "I have no idea what I'm doing!" can be pretty terrifying. But luckily, you don't have to know what you're doing when it comes to buying a home… as long as you work with someone who does. Working with a real estate agent who understands your market is an invaluable resource, especially to first time home-buyers. Your real estate agent can not only walk you through the entire process, but they also handle the hard stuff — like finding that perfect property and negotiating with tough sellers — so you don't have to. You might be afraid that the fact you've never purchased a house before will hinder the process, but when you work with the right real estate agent, there's nothing to be afraid of. Purchasing your first home can be a scary process. But now that you know the most common fears — and how to overcome them — it's time to transform that fear into excitement, get out there, and find the home of your dreams!

Nov. 5, 2017

A bit about Charlotte

Charlotte is trying to win the bid for the next Amazon headquarters.  Below is a video from  Charlotte USA, which was created by FLICK studios.  We are sharing - simply because it gives any of you looking to move to the Charlotte area an idea of just how great this city is - and we hope you will make Charlotte your next new home.  

 

Oct. 23, 2017

Fall Leaves Bring Sold Signs

Summer has come to an end and you probably are thinking you've lost the opportunity to sell, and need to wait till next summer. But that's far from the truth! Although it's not as hectic and crazy with the swarm of buyers on the market, the fall season brings out the most serious of lookers. They are the pool of buyers that waited out the summer frenzy to find their perfect home in the fall, and you don't want to miss these buyers! They are ready to make a move, today! And selling in a slower period does not equate to less money. That's a misconception that home owners have based on untrue data that floats around. With the right agent, and your home being priced correctly, you can get a great deal selling your home during the fall season. And might actually prefer it. Here are the top 3 benefits to listing during the fall season.

1. Serious Buyers - Let's be honest, if buyers are out during the busy season, looking for homes, they are serious and ready to buy. Although the summer brings in a large crowd, that crowd contains a lot of people that are excited by the season, and fall into the "trend" of house hunting. These people end up not really being serious about the process, and tend to hold off for another time. If people are investing time to look during the fall season, they are more likely to be interested in actually buying your home, instead of touring it.

2. Less Competition - Selling in the fall isn't something many families can accomplish due to personal schedules. That's why a significant amount of homes get listed during the summer season. Which means that summer time brings in a lot of competition. Selling in the fall means the potential house next door that has slightly more perks that may have been listed during the summer, doesn't make your home sit stagnant, since everyone wanted your neighbor's house. It also doesn't devalue your home because of the house that could go up next door that could be under-priced in your neighborhood, and draw all of the attention.

With a slower season, you get dedicated attention to your property, which increases the chance of a sale. 

3. Easier to Find Your Dream Home - Not only do you get to benefit from a slower season during the selling process, but you can also benefit on the buying side. With less competition on your dream house, you can get a better deal. The summer brings a lot of missed opportunities for buyers on their dream homes, because they go off the market instantly. This will give you the opportunity to get your home on the market and take your time to find the right one to resize into. A much calmer pace to the transaction will make it less stressful, and everyone all around happier. Don't feel rushed into buying a home overnight during the summer, it could turn into a headache. If you want a far more peaceful transaction, that has calmer pace, then selling during the fall is perfect for you.

Posted in Selling
Oct. 6, 2017

The Mortgage Process: What You Need to Know