How Much Must You Trust Your Listing Agent?

by Chris Druesedow September 24, 2015

How Much Must You Trust Your Listing Agent? | Keeping Current Matters You and your family have decided to sell your house. It is now time to choose a real estate professional to help with the process. One of the major attributes this agent must possess is trustworthiness. To what degree do you need to trust them? You must have enough trust in them that you feel comfortable they will accomplish all four things below: 1. Sell possibly the largest asset your family owns In many cases, a home is the largest asset a family has. Studies have shown that the equity many families have in their home is the largest percentage of that family’s … Continue reading

Is Qualifying for a Mortgage Getting Easier?

by Chris Druesedow September 23, 2015

There has been a lot of talk about how difficult it is to get a home mortgage in today’s lending environment. However, three recent reports have revealed that lending standards are beginning to ease. This is great news for both first time buyers and current homeowners looking to move or buy a second vacation/retirement home. Let’s look at the three reports: The MBA’s Mortgage Credit Availability Index This index, issued by the Mortgage Bankers’ Association, measures the availability of credit available in the home mortgage market. A decline in the MCAI indicates that lending standards are tightening, while increases in the index are indicative of a loosening of credit. We can see that the index … Continue reading

Buying A Home Is Better Way to Produce Wealth Than Renting

by Chris Druesedow September 22, 2015

Buying A Home Is Better Way to Produce Wealth Than Renting | Keeping Current Matters According to the latest Beracha, Hardin & Johnson Buy vs. Rent (BH&J) Index homeownership is a better way to produce greater wealth, on average, than renting. The BH&J Index is a quarterly report that attempts to answer the question: Is it better to rent or buy a home in today’s housing market? The index examines that entire US housing market and then isolates 23 major markets for comparison. The researchers at use a “’horse race’ comparison between an individual that is buying a home and an individual that rents a similar quality home and reinvests all monies otherwise invested in … Continue reading

5 Reasons You Should Sell Now!

by Chris Druesedow September 21, 2015

5 Reasons to Sell You House Now! | Keeping Current Matters As the temperature continues to rise, buyers are coming out ready to purchase their dream home. Here are five reasons that you should list your house for sale now. 1. Strong Buyer Demand Foot traffic refers to the number of people out actually physically looking at homes right now. The latest foot traffic numbers show that there are significantly more prospective purchasers currently looking at homes than at any point in the last two years! These buyers are ready, willing and able to purchase… and are in the market right now! Take advantage of the buyer activity currently in the market. 2. There Is … Continue reading

Homeownership: The Real Story Behind The Headlines

by Chris Druesedow September 17, 2015

The big housing news this week is that the homeownership rate has dropped to 63.4% which represents the lowest rate in 48 years. That news definitely is making headlines. Yet, to fully understand what this means we have to look at the story that created these headlines. There is no doubt the homeownership rate has declined since the housing crisis. The story behind the headline… The dramatic fall in the rate over the past year must be looked at very closely. The rate is determined by the “number of households” who rent versus those who own. Let’s assume you have nine friends that live on their own (thus forming a household); six of them own … Continue reading

Should I Wait to Put Down a Bigger Down Payment?

by Chris Druesedow September 16, 2015

Should I Wait to Put Down a Bigger Down Payment? | Keeping Current Matters Some experts are advising that first time and move-up buyers wait until they save up 20% before they move forward with their decision to purchase a home. One of the main reasons they suggest waiting is that a buyer must purchase private mortgage insurance if they have less than the 20%. That increases the monthly payment the buyer will be responsible for. In a recent article, Freddie Mac explained what this would mean for a $200,000 house: Difference Between a 5% and 20% Down Payment | Keeping Current Matters However, we must look at other aspects of the purchase to see … Continue reading

Don’t Get Caught In The Renter’s Trap

by Chris Druesedow September 15, 2015

Don’t Get Caught In The Renter’s Trap | Keeping Current Matters There are many benefits to homeownership. One of the top ones is being able to protect yourself from rising rents and lock in your housing cost for the life of your mortgage. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) released their findings of a study in which they studied “income growth, housing costs and changes in the share of renter and owner-occupied households over the past five years in metropolitan statistical areas throughout the US.” Don’t Become Trapped The study revealed that over the last five years a typical rent rose 15% while the income of renters grew by only 11%. If you are currently … Continue reading

Over 23% Thinking of Selling. Why the Hesitation?

by Chris Druesedow September 14, 2015

Last month, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported that housing inventory was down 4.7% from the same time last year and that the month’s inventory of homes for sale stood at 4.8 – far below the six months necessary for a normal housing market. Why is there such a shortage of inventory? The recently released Homeowner Sentiment Survey suggests that the American homeowner may not be fully aware of the opportunities that exist in the current real estate market. The survey, conducted by Edelman Berland for HSF Affiliates, also reports that many homeowners would be placing their home up for sale if they were better informed about today’s market. Since the housing industry is … Continue reading

What You Do Not Need To Hear From Your Listing Agent!

by Chris Druesedow September 11, 2015

What You Do Not Need To Hear From Your Listing Agent! | Keeping Current Matters You’ve decided to sell your house. You begin to interview potential real estate agents to help you through the process. You need someone you trust enough to: Set the market value on possibly the largest asset your family owns (your home) Set the time schedule for the successful liquidation of that asset Set the fee for the services required to liquidate that asset An agent must be concerned first and foremost about you and your family in order to garner that degree of trust. Make sure this is the case. Be careful if the agent you are interviewing begins the … Continue reading

5 Financial Reasons To Buy A Home

by Chris Druesedow September 10, 2015

5 Financial Reasons to Buy A Home | Keeping Current Matters We have reported many times that the American Dream of homeownership is alive and well. The personal reasons to own differ for each buyer, with many basic similarities. Eric Belsky, the Managing Director of the Joint Center of Housing Studies at Harvard University expanded on the top 5 financial benefits of homeownership in his paper -The Dream Lives On: the Future of Homeownership in America. Here are the five reasons, each followed by an excerpt from the study: 1.) Housing is typically the one leveraged investment available. “Few households are interested in borrowing money to buy stocks and bonds and few lenders are willing … Continue reading

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