Refinancing Myths Dispelled


You’ve probably heard alot of discussion on refinancing and that includes refinancing myths. It’s time to dispell some of the refinancing myths you may have heard. “Refinancing” is a scary word for many people, but that shouldn’t be the case for you. The myths about refinancing cause much of the worry. Here are a few refinancing myths we’d like to dispell about refinancing that may be holding you back.

For many homeowners, refinancing can not only lower your monthly payments and help with your monthly budget, but it can save you thousands of dollars in the long run.

Three refinancing myths dispelled…

1. Refinancing Myth: You’re too late. The best deals are over.

The Reality: YOU’RE NOT TOO LATE.

For years now, we’ve been hearing that interest rates will be on the rise, and although there have been some small increases, you’re still in a great position to drastically lower your interest rate. The general rule is if your mortgage interest rate is more than one percent above the current market rate, you should consider refinancing.

2. Refinancing Myth: It takes alot of time (and effort) to refinance.

The Reality: IT’S NOT TOO TIME CONSUMING.

Don’t brush off refinancing just because it seems like a long and daunting process. An informational call with a lender to see how rates compare will only take a few minutes. There are also some programs for streamlining the application process. Often much of the process can be handled online and in the comfort of your own home or office. And besides, isn’t the amount of money you could save worth the time and effort?

3. Refinancing Myth: You can’t refinance an Adjustable Rate Mortgage

The Reality: ARMS CAN BE REFINANCED, (and it can be smart to do so!)

Seeing your Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) increase after the introductory period can be incredibly stressful and place a squeeze on your budget. Many people assume they’re stuck, but ARMs can be refinanced, just like fixed-rate mortgages. You can even switch to a shorter term fixed-rate mortgage, such as 15 or 23 years. The longer you’re planning to stay in the home, the more sense it makes to look into refinancing.

If you’re in a home you’d like to stay in, refinancing can be a great option for you. Many of the worrisome refinancing myths you’ve heard may not be true or may not apply to you.

If you’re thinking you may want to purchase a new home instead, maybe now is the time to sell and look for that new home.

Either way, you can access my list of reputable area lenders who’d be happy to help you. Just contact me for information or to help you through the process of buying your new home.

Social Media and Technology in Real Estate

Using innovative technology and social media in real estate:

I have earned the National Association of Realtor’s (NAR’s) e-PRO certification.  I make the most of  social media and technology to help you with your real estate needs.   e-PRO® is the only technology certification to be officially recognized, endorsed, and conferred by NAR.  

Agents with NAR’s e-PRO certification demonstrate:

  1. Advanced training in using the latest technology and social media.  This helps to promote your property or to help you find your next home.
  2. A clear understanding of the ways technology, rich media and social networking can benefit today’s consumer.
  3. Excellence in adopting, implementing, and promoting technology best practices.
  4. Ethics with commitment to use technology in fair and responsible manner.
  5. Professionalism by completing an education program designed to keep technical knowledge and skill sets up-to-date.

The Official NAR link to e-Pro info is:  About NAR e-Pro

Contact me for more information!

Learn More About Us

Learn more about us. Find out what makes eXp Realty an outstanding choice for your home buying and selling experience. See how you can experience Central Alabama area home buying and selling made easy, like it should be: personal, simplified, enjoyable.

Learn more about us HERE. Learn more about me and eXp Realty HERE.

Is Coaching for You?

Is coaching for you?

Are you trying to figure out what you want to do? Need help figuring out how to do it? Need someone to keep you on track? All of the above?

Coaching may be right for you. Check out my blogs and additional coaching and inspirational resources at: DreamDesignDestiny.com and Here.

Central Alabama Home Selling Simplified

Central Alabama home selling simplified.

Are you exploring options in selling your Central Alabama home? If so, let’s work together and go over your needs, prepare your home, price it right, and effectivly promote your home to sell with a comprehensive marketing plan.   You can have a simple simplified and successful experience selling your home.  Click here to Learn More.

Central Alabma Home Buying Simplified

Cntral Alabama Home Buying Simplified.

Get Educated. Get Pre-approved. Find Your Dream Home.

Are you a buyer or future buyer? Let us guide you to a simplified and stress free purchase.

Take a look at the Infographic below.  Then, read more on how to buy a Central Alabama Home HERE.

Secrets to a stress free home buying experience
Secrets for a Stress Free Home Purchase

Alabama First-Time Homebuyer Savings Account!

Becoming a homeowner is a big step with big rewards. However, it can also be a challenge, especially when it comes to saving for a down payment. Thanks to a new law that goes into effect in 2019, Alabamians will be able to save for a down payment with the First-Time Homebuyer Savings Account Program, an Alabama state tax-free savings account dedicated to the purchase of your first home. It also applies to those re-entering the housing market if you haven’t owned a home in the last 10 years.

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Individuals or couples can open one of these tax-free savings accounts at any local bank, credit union or other financial institution in Alabama.

 

 

The principal deposits and earnings will be deductible on your state income taxes. Savings from the account can be used to pay for the down payment and/or closing costs for the purchase of a single family dwelling.

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Mythbuster: Many people believe that they need to put 20% down to purchase a home.

 

 

The average down payment is actually closer to 11%. In many cases, the down payment can be even lower than that.  In our area, there are often low money down options–and your savings may be used for closing costs!

If you want to own a home, opening a tax-free savings account through the First-Time Homebuyer Savings Account Program is an important first step in making your dream a reality. To learn more about this program contact me, your local bank or credit union, and view the Infographic.

Information courtesy of Alabama Association of Realtors.

Wetumpka Area Market Trends–3rd Quarter 2018 Update

Gold Star ParkA few weeks ago, we looked at the Montgomery market as a whole and found just short of a 5 month supply of homes and a average sold price of $171,272 for the month of September.   Visit: Central Alabama Market Update–Fall 2018. We all know that real estate can vary considerably by neighbornood and  area, so  earlier this year we looked at market trends for the Wetumpka area including downtown and surrounding areas (zip code 36092). Visit: Wetumpka Area Market Trends–Year to Date (through May 2018). It’s time for an update to see how the more current information on the Wetumpka market compares with earlier this year and with the overall Montgomery area.

It looks like the Wetumpka Area continues to be more toward a sellers market than the Montgomery Market as a whole.  Wetumpka has less than a 4 month inventory of single family residential homes and and is averaging  about 90 days on the market from lisiting to closing  Also, although the average sold price of home is Wetumpka is below the average sold price in the overall Montgomery area market, prices are moving upward!

What does this mean?

If you’re a Wetumpka homeowner looking to sell, now looks like a great time to get that home on the market!   If you are thinking about buying a home in Wetumpka, you may want to consider stepping up your plans to get on board!

If you are interested in a more detailed breakdown of market trends by a particular zip code or neighborhood of interest , let me know and I’ll send you a free report:  Free Market Report for Your Neighborhood! 

Wetumpka Area Real Estate-QTR 3 2018

Data pulled from the Montgomery Area Association of Realtors on 10-15-2018  based on the period 1-1-2018 through 9-30-2018.  Data  Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed.  Data focused on zip code 36092 which includes downtown Wetumpka and surrounding areas.  If you are interested in Wetumpka 36093 or any other area zip code or neighborhood, let me know and I’ll send you a free report:  Free Market Report for Your Neighborhood! 

Central Alabama Market Update–Fall 2018

The Central Alabama real estate market continues among the most affordable and generally stable markets in the US.  The average home  in our Central Alabama area sold for $171,272 in September.¹     It appears that sold prices may be on the rise, about 3.3% more in September compared to just last month (August 2018), BUT they are still under 1% higher than September last year 2017.

While many other parts of the country continue to experience major price increases along with lack of inventory, the Central Alabama market overall is more in balance with  realatively stable prices adjusting for seasonal variation and a hint of a sellers market–maintaining  close to a 5 month supply of homes.  Average days on the market in the Central Alabama region had been hoovering around 90 days for quite some time, but this past month, it edged up to 102 days.   Over half (57%) of the homes sold in under 90 days, but nearly 18% of homes that closed in September were on the market over six months.¹  It is possible that as inventories are lower, additional properties that have been on the market longer periods are selling and causing the average days on market calculation to increase.

Central Alabama Real Estate-September 2018 Market UpdateData from Montgomery Area Association of Realtors, MAAR MLS only, September 2018 as of October 1, 2018.

When looking at market trends it’s important to look at year to date information and to compare the same time periods in previous years.  We are all familiar with the impact of seasonal and even monthly variations on both housing supply and buyers in the marketplace.  In our area, our home sale activity varies seasonally, but not as dramatically as many areas of the country.  According to the data through August, the actual Montgomery area home sales are closely aligning with the Alabama Center for Real Estate (ACRE), Culverhouse College of Business at the University of Alabama monthly projections for homes sold in the Montgomery area, suggesting a relatively stable and predictible market²:

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ACRE data shows that January and February are expected to have the fewest home sales in our area.  While this year started out slightly below the monthly projections, several of the following months exceeded the projections.    You can also see from the monthly data and projections that the lowest number of sold homes occurs early in the year, with the increase in spring market activity in 2018 beginning as early as March and peaking in June. By the end of August, 3226 residential units were actually sold, slightly over the projected year to date of 3192 by 34 units. Projections from September through December 2018 reveal an expected seasonal decline in homes to be sold, with a projected 1445 additional homes sold before the end of the year.  As we close out 2018, we will keep an eye on how the market actually performs and update on expectations for 2019.

What does this mean?

Although our area real estate market is relatively stable, there is a tendency toward a seller’s market and relatively low inventories with slightly increasing prices in the Montgomery area.  Regardless of the time of year, there is an active real estate market with buyers looking to purchase a home year round.  If you are thinking about selling in our area, the best time to sell is when you are ready!

For buyers,  this is a great time to make a move to buy a home.  Prices here are relatively steady and there has not been the pricing frenzy and multi-offer competitive buying situation that have been experienced in many areas of the country causing prices to go incredibly high.  This means that you can place an offer to purchase a home with more confidence that a reasonable offer will be accepted and be in a position to build equity for the future.  While no one can guarantee which direction the market will actually go, the Central Alabama area market is relatively stable and affordable.

Keep in mind that markets vary by neighborhood.   If you are interested in a more detailed breakdown of market trends by a particular zip code or neighborhood of interest , let me know and I’ll send you a free report:  Free Market Report for Your Neighborhood! 

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¹Montgomery Area Association of Realtors, Multiple Listing Service, September 2018 residential sales data (pulled October 1, 2018).

²The University of Alabama, Culverhouse College of Commerce, Alabama Center for Real Estate, Montgomery Area Real Estate Sales Forecast, August 2018 update.

Secrets to a Stress Free Purchase!

Are you in the market for a new home or  thinking about it?

Either way these tips can help you prepare and better understand the process once you make the decision to move forward!

STEP 1:  Lay the groundwork. 

These are things you can (and should) be doing right now even if your home purchase is months or even years ahead!  It is especially important to assess your financial situation, including your credit status, money for downpayment and closing, and how much you can and want to spend on your home.  The sooner you sort this out, the sooner you can set your timetable to get your new home.  Check out the infographic below for more details!

STEP 2:  Work with an agent.

Even if you are just getting started in the process, you can still work with a Realtor®.  A Realtor® can help you understand the steps in the process, what to expect and how to prepare,  and will coach you on navigating the real estate market place.

STEP 3:  Communicate effectively.

The team involved in your home purchase consists of your Realtor®, lender/banker, inspector, any other agent involved in the property listing, and others who have a role in making the home purchase come together.  Your Realtor® serves as a coordinator to ensure the transaction goes smoothly with all involved.  It is essential that you communicate effectively with the team, but in particular with your Realtor® who can help facilitate communications with everyone else on the team.

STEP 4:  Be patient, persistent and decisive.

This is another really important area where your Realtor® can be invaluable.  There are times in the process where you need to be patient and wait for the process to move forward, but there are also times when some action needs to be taken.  Your Realtor® can help you through these steps and help you through the decision process so your transaction goes as smoothly as possible with the least amount of stress!

Step 5:  Be flexible.

Keep in mind that it may take some home improvements or even multiple moves to reach your goal of the totally perfect home of your dreams.  It’s important to dream, but also to be flexible with the process as you take the steps to move closer to living your dreams.

Check out the infographic for more details:

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Secrets for a Stress Free Home Purchase

Thinking of buying a home now or in the future?  It’s not too early to contact me to help you understand the process and get familiar with the market.  Contact Me to arrange a complimentary consultation.