Friday, December 24, 2010

Owner financing in real estate transactions


Also known as seller financing, owner financing is growing in popularity in today's economy. With the credit markets slowing down and people finding it harder and harder to borrow, owner financing is looking better and better as an alternative to traditional financing. Owner financing is when the seller of the property basically agrees to take payments rather than a lump sum if you aren't buying the home for cash. A seller can lend buyer money for the entire purchase or seller can offer owner financing as a second mortgage if buyer isn't approved for the sale price and both the buyer and seller are otherwise in agreement on the purchase price.

The best case scenario for a seller to offer owner financing is if he/she owns the home free and clear. In other words,owner doesn't need the proceeds from the sale in order to pay off his or her mortgage. Furthermore, the seller does not need the proceeds from the sale of the home for his/her new home

The terms of the purchase and loan need to be right for both parties. The interest rate, duration and repayment structure need to be acceptable for both parties. This usually requires a good deal of negotiation.

Some of the benefits for a buyer and seller to consider if you are entertaining the idea of owner financing:

1. You don't have to get traditional financing if owner finances entire purchase. If seller is willing to finance a portion of the loan, this might help you lower your down payment or help you qualify for traditional financing, but won't completely eliminate traditional financing.

2. Interest rate of loan is independent of market rate. It can be a negotiating tool for buyer and seller to make the deal happen. A seller may offer owner financing and may ask for a higher rate because he/she is taking on a financial risk (that a lender typically would). On the other hand,a seller might offer a lower interest rate if he or she is a motivated seller and buyer is reluctant to go forward with purchase because buyer either thinks mortgage rate is too high and/or buyer cannot afford monthly payments with the market interest rate.

3. As a seller,if you are financially comfortable with owner financing,you could be opening your home to a wider pool of home buyers. One of the biggest benefits for the buyer (if goes with owner financing) is not having to pay the costs associated with conventional loans. Points, origination fees, underwriting charges, appraisal, credit reports, title insurance and other fees charged by conventional lenders can amount to thousands of dollars at closing. The buyer is free from these with an owner-carry installment sale. If a buyer is otherwise approved for a loan,but the closing costs are too much for him/her, owner financing eliminates this objection.

4. If buyer cannot get approved for a loan due to credit score, loan,owner financing is a way to make the deal happen. As a seller, you might be able to be more firm in your terms. There are buyers who are willing to pay a premium for non-qualifying financing Owner financing may also give the buyer a chance to improve his credit rating by owning a home and making payments timely.

5. If purchase is done entirely with owner financing,then settlement date is not held up buy lender financing.

6. If as a home seller,you are many other homes on the market and/or there are homes that buyers might otherwise find more appealing,owner financing might improve the home's appeal since buyers won't have to go through the traditional loan process.

7. As FHA loans have become more popular,with nearly 1/3 of buyers in America using them (August 2010 article in Marketplace),if seller does owner financing,then buyer's loan isn't subject to FHA doing their own inspection of the home for funding purposes of the loan. Some transactions fall apart because FHA lenders won't fund loans based on their home inspections, unless seller or buyer agrees to make repairs. And after the repairs are made,the inspector comes back to approve the quality of the repair. Owner financing eliminates this issue (issues may come up with buyer's home inspector and the FHA inspection is another hurdle).

8. Some transactions fall apart because of the home not appraising. As a seller,if you offer owner financing,one term can be to eliminate the appraisal contingency since you don't need it in order to fund the buyer's loan. Buyer can ask for appraisal contingency,but since seller is loan holder,he/she is able to fund loan so there is no appraisal contingency. Buyer can either agree or disagree to this contingency. If buyer cannot otherwise get a traditional loan,needs owner financing and loves the home,then he or she should give a lot of pause before telling owner that sale is subject to an appraisal. Seller may acquiesce or that could be a deal breaker.

Through traditional mortgages,the lender sends out an appraisor and if in appraisor's professional opinion the home isn't worth the sale price,then the loan won't be approved for the full amount of the sale price and either the seller has to reduce the sale price to the loan price,the buyer come up with the balance in cash to cover the difference between the loan amount and sale price or the buyer and seller have to agree to a compromise. Otherwise the deal falls apart.

Some negatives about owner financing

1. Seller responsible (him/herself or needs to hire somebody) to keep records of monthly payments and buyer's loan balance. An amortization schedule helps to accurately calculate the interest, principal, and remaining balance due. There are also annual 1098 mortgage interest statements to prepare. Many sellers decide to leave all this to a professional and make use of an outside servicer.

2. The duration of the loan. Does seller want to be collecting buyer's loan for perhaps 30 years or does he want to be free and clear of his/her former home in every possible manner? Seller could offer a shorter loan term with a balloon payment at the end.

3. Seller has to become a "collection agency" if buyer not paying loans on time. As the lender, sellers also have to worry if the buyer maintains the property, lets the property insurance lapse, fails to keeps the real estate taxes current, or violates any other terms of the financing arrangement. If seller no longer wants to be the lender and/or needs the money from the entire loan,then he/she has to sell the loan to an investor.


4. If buyer isn't paying loan,seller may need to initiate foreclosure proceedings. One risk for a lender when a home goes to foreclosure is that the property might be worth less than the buyer's outstanding balance.

5. If seller sells home with owner financing and seller also has outstanding loans of his/her own,buyer has to be concerned about seller paying off his/her bills.

There are many things to consider with real estate trasactions involving owner financing and I am sure that I haven't touched on everything.

Before agreeing to owner financing, seller and buyer should consult separate legal counsel in their state. .

If I can be of service in helping you and yours in selling or buying a home,please let me know. I always have time for and greatly appreciate your referrals.


Adam

Cell: (301)943-4370

adambashein@mris.com
(301)718-4100
www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors

Owner financing in real estate transactions


Also known as seller financing, owner financing is growing in popularity in today's economy. With the credit markets slowing down and people finding it harder and harder to borrow, owner financing is looking better and better as an alternative to traditional financing. Owner financing is when the seller of the property basically agrees to take payments rather than a lump sum if you aren't buying the home for cash. A seller can lend buyer money for the entire purchase or seller can offer owner financing as a second mortgage if buyer isn't approved for the sale price and both the buyer and seller are otherwise in agreement on the purchase price.

The best case scenario for a seller to offer owner financing is if he/she owns the home free and clear. In other words,owner doesn't need the proceeds from the sale in order to pay off his or her mortgage. Furthermore, the seller does not need the proceeds from the sale of the home for his/her new home

The terms of the purchase and loan need to be right for both parties. The interest rate, duration and repayment structure need to be acceptable for both parties. This usually requires a good deal of negotiation.

Some of the benefits for a buyer and seller to consider if you are entertaining the idea of owner financing:

1. You don't have to get traditional financing if owner finances entire purchase. If seller is willing to finance a portion of the loan, this might help you lower your down payment or help you qualify for traditional financing, but won't completely eliminate traditional financing.

2. Interest rate of loan is independent of market rate. It can be a negotiating tool for buyer and seller to make the deal happen. A seller may offer owner financing and may ask for a higher rate because he/she is taking on a financial risk (that a lender typically would). On the other hand,a seller might offer a lower interest rate if he or she is a motivated seller and buyer is reluctant to go forward with purchase because buyer either thinks mortgage rate is too high and/or buyer cannot afford monthly payments with the market interest rate.

3. As a seller,if you are financially comfortable with owner financing,you could be opening your home to a wider pool of home buyers. One of the biggest benefits for the buyer (if goes with owner financing) is not having to pay the costs associated with conventional loans. Points, origination fees, underwriting charges, appraisal, credit reports, title insurance and other fees charged by conventional lenders can amount to thousands of dollars at closing. The buyer is free from these with an owner-carry installment sale. If a buyer is otherwise approved for a loan,but the closing costs are too much for him/her, owner financing eliminates this objection.

4. If buyer cannot get approved for a loan due to credit score, loan,owner financing is a way to make the deal happen. As a seller, you might be able to be more firm in your terms. There are buyers who are willing to pay a premium for non-qualifying financing Owner financing may also give the buyer a chance to improve his credit rating by owning a home and making payments timely.

5. If purchase is done entirely with owner financing,then settlement date is not held up buy lender financing.

6. If as a home seller,you are many other homes on the market and/or there are homes that buyers might otherwise find more appealing,owner financing might improve the home's appeal since buyers won't have to go through the traditional loan process.

7. As FHA loans have become more popular,with nearly 1/3 of buyers in America using them (August 2010 article in Marketplace),if seller does owner financing,then buyer's loan isn't subject to FHA doing their own inspection of the home for funding purposes of the loan. Some transactions fall apart because FHA lenders won't fund loans based on their home inspections, unless seller or buyer agrees to make repairs. And after the repairs are made,the inspector comes back to approve the quality of the repair. Owner financing eliminates this issue (issues may come up with buyer's home inspector and the FHA inspection is another hurdle).

8. Some transactions fall apart because of the home not appraising. As a seller,if you offer owner financing,one term can be to eliminate the appraisal contingency since you don't need it in order to fund the buyer's loan. Buyer can ask for appraisal contingency,but since seller is loan holder,he/she is able to fund loan so there is no appraisal contingency. Buyer can either agree or disagree to this contingency. If buyer cannot otherwise get a traditional loan,needs owner financing and loves the home,then he or she should give a lot of pause before telling owner that sale is subject to an appraisal. Seller may acquiesce or that could be a deal breaker.

Through traditional mortgages,the lender sends out an appraisor and if in appraisor's professional opinion the home isn't worth the sale price,then the loan won't be approved for the full amount of the sale price and either the seller has to reduce the sale price to the loan price,the buyer come up with the balance in cash to cover the difference between the loan amount and sale price or the buyer and seller have to agree to a compromise. Otherwise the deal falls apart.

Some negatives about owner financing

1. Seller responsible (him/herself or needs to hire somebody) to keep records of monthly payments and buyer's loan balance. An amortization schedule helps to accurately calculate the interest, principal, and remaining balance due. There are also annual 1098 mortgage interest statements to prepare. Many sellers decide to leave all this to a professional and make use of an outside servicer.

2. The duration of the loan. Does seller want to be collecting buyer's loan for perhaps 30 years or does he want to be free and clear of his/her former home in every possible manner? Seller could offer a shorter loan term with a balloon payment at the end.

3. Seller has to become a "collection agency" if buyer not paying loans on time. As the lender, sellers also have to worry if the buyer maintains the property, lets the property insurance lapse, fails to keeps the real estate taxes current, or violates any other terms of the financing arrangement. If seller no longer wants to be the lender and/or needs the money from the entire loan,then he/she has to sell the loan to an investor.


4. If buyer isn't paying loan,seller may need to initiate foreclosure proceedings. One risk for a lender when a home goes to foreclosure is that the property might be worth less than the buyer's outstanding balance.

5. If seller sells home with owner financing and seller also has outstanding loans of his/her own,buyer has to be concerned about seller paying off his/her bills.

There are many things to consider with real estate trasactions involving owner financing and I am sure that I haven't touched on everything.

Before agreeing to owner financing, seller and buyer should consult separate legal counsel in their state. .

If I can be of service in helping you and yours in selling or buying a home,please let me know. I always have time for and greatly appreciate your referrals.


Adam


Cell: 301-943-4370

adambashein@mris.com
301-718-4100
www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein

Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Cork and laminate flooring


Thinking of installing new floors? Cork flooring is "in" and supposed to good for people with back problems. Cork flooring is resistant to the mold and mildew commonly associated with other types of flooring. It does tend to cost more money than other types of flooring. As far as cleaning,a damp rag is suggested,but not a mop. Cork offers an unusual appearance, warm surface, and can enhance most decor, but it can be permanently damaged by heavy objects and sustain discoloration if consistently exposed to strong sunlight. Read warranty on the flooring.

A tip if you own a home or are looking to buy a home and the wood laminate floor feels like it might be too soft/have too much give. Ask your home inspector to check the flooring for moisture and to also check for the quality of the plywood underneath the flooring.

Part of my service to you is referring you to contractors for home improvements, whether the are for you to enjoy while you live there, to enhance your home before selling it or you want to get the cost for a home improvement on a home yhou ar considering buyig. I am here whenever you or soembody you know needs me. I appreciate and always have time for your referrals.

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
CELL: 301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
301-718-4100
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854

Counting days on home sale contingencies in real estate contract


One portion of the sales contract discusses "computation of days". How days are counted by the contract and the parties for contingencies? Know how days are counted when writing a contract and if it is a short sale ask how the seller's lender counts days it needs for reviewing offers. Some contracts consider the end of the 1 day to be at a certain time of the day (not midnight).

When you have signed a sales contract take out your calender,day timer,open outlook or whatever program online you use,count the days for each contingency and mark them down so you don't forget/overlook the date. Time flies, but don't let it pass you by.
If you are ever unsure or confused about contingency dates,ask your realtor.

Thinking of listing your home for sale or looking to buy a home?
I will walk you every way through the contract. I am here to help.
And, I always have time for your referrals,

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
CELL: 301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
301-718-4100
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854

Home seller strategy if facing potential short sale and have 2 mortgages


Are you in a situation where you may need to sell your home because you can no longer afford to pay the mortgage?

Do you have a first and second trust?

Before selling your home,find out about modifying your loan(s)if you don't want to move.

If you want to move and/or can't modify your loan, consider talking to the lender who holds your second mortgage (if you have a first and second trust) and talk about paying what you owe them.

It can take a while to hear back from a lender to approve the sale of your home when you are asking the lender to forgive the balance on your mortgage (if your proceeds from the sale won't enable you to pay off the mortgage and you are asking the lender to forgive the balance). When a seller has a first and second trust,it takes even more time because you are asking them both to accept losses, which neither wants to do.

Often the second loan is for a smaller amount of money and at a higher interest rate than the first loan. Some of the second lenders feel they should recover the entire loan or only have a minimal loss since the seller borrowed substantially less money from them. So they may hold up negotiations. Meanwhile, the first trust also wants to minimize their losses. so there is a tug of war between both lenders (it might be easier to negotiate if both loans are with the same bank,but it depends on the bank).

I am working on a contract now, where the seller engaged the second lender in conversations to pay off her loan prior to selling her home. The seller and second trust came to an agreement,so the seller is paying off the balance. We will now "only" need one lender to approve the sale. I applaud the seller for doing this and wanted to share this idea with you if you or someone you know is in a potential short sale situation and wants to increase the odds of a successful sales transacation.

As a potential seller in a short sale situation, make the best of a bad situation. In addition to making your home show well,talk to your lender and if you have a first and second mortgage,do everything you can to pay it off before selling your home. Some buyers are only interested in looking at short sales where the seller only has to get one lender to approve the purchase because they believe it will take less time for the sale to be approved and there may be more negotiating room on the buying side if only one lender has to approve the sale price and terms.

If you or somebody you know wants to talk about short sales or the market,let me know. I am here to help and am anywhere you want to be in Metro DC.

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info

CELL: 301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
301-718-4100
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac, MD 20854

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Is your home LEGALLY REGISTERED as a rental property?



This post was originally motivated by a real estate transaction that I am working on,where the home has a "basement apartment". The basement has a full kitchen,full bath,bedroom and a seperate entrance (you don't need to go upstairs to the "main level" of the home in order to come and go from the house.

If you are looking for a home to buy and one of the homes has a basement apartment tell your lender (if you are getting a mortgage)because lenders will consider your credit,your income and POTENTIAL INCOME (if the home you want to buy has a basement area that can be rented out) and enable you to take out a larger loan. This helps if you aren't approved for a large enough loan to purchase the home (without the potential rental income). Most importantly,check that the basement apartment is registered in your area as a legal rental property. As a home owner,if you are considering selling and have a basement apartment--even if never used as a rental property,I suggest getting it legally registered so more potential home buyers can afford your home.

The second motivation for this post was the 11 O'Clock news on WRC Channel 4 last night. They were reporting from Georgetown,a suburb in Washington,DC. Apparently local residents are unhappy that homes are being used as rental facilities for students at Georgetown University,so some owners are knocking on doors of their neighbors to see if the homes are "owner occupied" or not. The neighbors are taking down notes to check if the homes that are being rented out are registered as legal rental units in Washington, DC. IF the homes are not legally registered,the owners of the homes do face legal consequences. Homes that are registered as legal rental properties are subject to inspection by the local housing authority. I know first hand as my rental property was inspected a few weeks after I registered as a legal rental unit.

So, I want to remind anybody and everybody,in Washington,DC, Maryland and around the globe to make sure if you are a landlord..whether you are renting out your entire home,a room(s) or basmement apartment,that there are legal consequences. You may be subject to an inspection from your local housing authority and an inspection from your neighbors.

If you or anyone you know would like to discuss this topic or discuss the real estate market,give me a call or send me a message. I always have time for your referrals.

Life is good!



Adam
Cell: 301-943-4370

adambashein@mris.com

www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein

Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors

7821 Tuckerman Lane

Potomac, MD 20854

301-718-4100 ext. 132

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Consider buying a home for its potential? Maybe you should.


A new listing in the back of Kemp Mill, a subdivision in Silver Spring Maryland, on Bluff Terrace near the park. Below is a link for the listing Do you know anybody interested in living in Silver Spring, Maryland? Seller did a nice renovation job on the home in just over 2 months after buying the home for a steal-it was cash though.

Please visit my website to see the listing and for a general home search:

http://www.adambasheinsellshomes.com/MD/SILVER-SPRING/20902/homes-for-sale/100-BLUFF-TER-55629767

Even if it isn't the right home for you,give thought to buying a home for its potential
if it is in an area you like and has good bones. There are loans designed for homes that need renovation like the FHA 203k loan. Part of my full service with clients is introducing them to contractors if they see a home that needs work,but aren't sure what the cost of the work will be and if they will in the end have saved any money by buying a home that needs renovation/updating,verses a home that is "in perfect condition".

The other benefit of buying a home that needs renovation is that the renovation will be based on your taste,wants and needs. Some sellers' homes may be beautifully renovated from head to toe,but you may have a different taste than them.

On the other hand,if you buy a fully renovated home,you don't need to invest the time in meeting with contractors,calculcating the costs of repairs and different options. Some renovation work can be done while you live in the home,but some renovation work is substantial to the point where you cannot move into the home until at least until certain work is done. So,you might need to calculate the cost of living at your current residence a couple of additional months after your new home purchase. That being said, there may be more buyers out there looking at fully renovated homes,which brings up their value. You need to weigh the situation.

If you or someone you know is thinking of buying a home in Metro DC,please let me know. I always have time for and greatly appreciate your referrals.

Life is good!

Adam


Cell: 301-943-4370

adambashein@mris.com

www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein

Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors

301-718-4100 ext. 132

Saturday, November 13, 2010

RECORD INTEREST RATES TODAY; Typical seller is experiencing positive returns, and most people want to enjoy the pride of ownership.


Interest rates for a 30 year conventional loan are at a record low today at 4.17%. Speak to your lender. How can you afford not to buy? The lower the rates, the more house you can buy. How can you afford not to sell? The lower the rates are,the more buyers out their for your home,assuming it is priced correctly and shows well.

The National Association of Realtors recently released
its 2010 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, the annual
survey that evaluates demographics, preferences,
marketing and experiences of recent home buyers and
sellers. Among the survey's main findings are that the
typical seller is experiencing positive returns, and that
homeownership remains a fundamental goal of most
home buyers.
In fact, 85 percent of recent home buyers surveyed see their home as a good
investment, and nearly half think that investment is better than stocks. What's
more, the single biggest reason most people buy a home is the simple desire to
own a home of their own.
Other reasons for buying a home cited in the survey include:
• Desire for a larger home
• Change in family situation
• Home buyer tax credit
• Job-related move
• Affordability of homes

Let's talk about the market and I always have time for your referrals.

Life is good!


Adam
Cell: 301-943-4370

adambashein@mris.com

www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein

Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors


301-718-4100 ext. 132

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Would you agree to temporarily renting back your new home to the home seller/Post Settlement Occupancy



Rent-Backs are not as simple as many believe. There are risks as there are in any transaction.

1. This is elementary, but often overlooked because rent back/post-settlement occupancy by the former owners is generally for a short period of time. PUT EVERYTHING IN WRITING AS THOUGH. Treat it like you would in signing a lease for a rental.

2. What kind of loan is the purchaser using (if not paying with cash?)?
HAS THE PURCHASER BEEN APPROVED FOR A LOAN WITH OWNER OCCUPANT INTEREST?? If the rent back/Post Settlement Occupancy is for more than 60 days, the buyer may lose their standing as an owner-occupant and the concomitant interest rate. Mortgage interest rates are higher for investors...where buyer isn't owner occupant.
Many Post Settlement Occupancy Agreements are available for a 60 day occupancy only. For occupancy to last for more than 60 days, a standard Residential Lease Agreement may be required involving Landlord and Tenant law. If you do a "long term rent back", buyer risks charges of mortgage fraud. Lender may think buyer really doesn't have intention of moving into home and only wanted the better interest rate.

3. Home buyer should make sure to receive a security deposit from the former owner in case damage is done during the rent back. 4. One challenge is if the former owners don't move out when the rental period ends. The home buyer may have to go through the eviction process and incur legal expenses in order to force the former owner to move out.

4. Damages. What if the seller/tenant neglects and/or damages the property? There will be significant costs and/or loss of value on the part of the purchaser/landlord. The seller and the buyer should do a walk through and take notes regarding property condition prior to signing the rental agreement to avoid any disputes when then the former owner moves out. This is important for both parties in case seller claims the damage was pre-existing condition before settlement or buyer claims damage was done during seller's rental period. An adequate security deposit is the only way to mitigate the new owner's costs and/or loss.

5. Utilities. Who is going to pay the final utility bills? Without an adequate security deposit, the new owner will have no funds to cover the final utility charges if the seller/tenant fails to pay for their usage. Without a zero balance when the utility service is transferred from the former to the new occupant, many utility companies will not provide service to the new occupant. Water is usually a lien on the property. However, electric/gas is usually in the name of the occupant and final bills have to be satisfied or the new occupant may not have electricity/gas.


6. Another thing buyers have to consider when renting back their home to the seller is where to store their items in case they had to move out of their former residence. Even if buyers don't have to move out of their former residence prior to the end of the rental agreement with the sellers, the buyers still have to coordinate moving their items into their new home with when the sellers' out, unless sellers and buyers lease agreement allows buyers to move their items into the house during rental period.


7. A couple of reasons for sellers and buyers to engage in a rent back/post settlement occupancy agreement

a. Sellers are buying a new home and they want to make sure settlement on their new home goes as scheduled. If settlement is delayed, then sellers have to delay their move.
b. If sellers are buying a new built home and it isn't going to be ready prior to settlement on their former home.
c. Sellers are still working/in the middle of a project that doesn't end prior to settlement and they need to finish the job/assignment.
d. Buyers may be coming from out of town, and even if they are in town, they may not want to physically move during certain times of the year because of work, the weather, and the school year to name other reasons.
e. The buyers haven't sold their current home yet and a post-settlement occupancy period helps buyers generate income to help pay mortgage on their new home while they are still paying the mortgage on their unsold homes.

If you or anyone you know would like to further discuss this topic, other topics or talk about the real estate market and how I help people realize their home dreams, give me a call or send me a message. I always have time for your referrals.

Adam
Cell: 301-943-4370

adambashein@mris.com

www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein

Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors

7821 Tuckerman Lane

Potomac, MD 20854

301-718-4100 ext. 132

Friday, October 29, 2010

Positive signs about the real estate market!


Article from Weichert Insights:

"Several reports out this week indicate that the housing market is in the early stages of recovery, and that buyers continue to find today's high home affordability hard to resist.

In September, sales of existing single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops increased 10 percent from August, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). This represents the second consecutive monthly gain and far exceeded economists' expectations.

According to NAR President Vicki Cox Golder, with housing affordability conditions 60 percentage points higher than during the housing boom, opportunities abound in the current market. "The savings today's buyers are receiving are not a one-time benefit. Buyers with fixed-rate mortgages will save money every year they are living in their home -- this is truly an example of how homeownership builds wealth over the long term," she said.

In addition, the Commerce Department announced Wednesday that in September, sales of new single-family homes rose 6.6 percent from August."

If you want to talk about the real estate market or have real estate questions,let me know.

I am here to help.


Adam


Cell: 301-943-4370

adambashein@mris.com

www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein

Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors

7821 Tuckerman Lane

Potomac, MD 20854

301-718-4100 ext. 132

Testimonial from a satisfied client. How I can improve your real estate experience.


October, 28 2010

"Dear Adam,
Yocheved and I wanted to express our thanks and gratitude for all that you did to help us find our new house. You worked tirelessly (especially considering how picky we were), were always available, and helped us from beginning to end to ensure that we would find the right place. We were especially impressed with the idea of sending letters to people in the area where we were looking to see if anyone not yet on the market was interested in selling. It was very comforting knowing we had someone whom we could trust with us throughout the whole process. This feeling was cemented when you were able to negotiate for us a more favorable settlement at the time of the closing (which saved us a nice sum of money). We would certainly recommend you to other people (and in fact we already have).
Best of luck and may Hashem bless you with much success in all of your endeavors."

Sincerely,
Avraham and Yocheved Sussman

-----------------------------------------------------
If you are thinking of buying or selling a home,I want to make it the most positive and effective experience for you.

I'm here to help.

Adam

Cell: 301-943-4370

adambashein@mris.com

www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein

Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors

7821 Tuckerman Lane

Potomac, MD 20854

301-718-4100 ext. 132

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Beat the Competition! Why today is a great day to put your home on the market for sale.


Thinking of selling? Now might be the right time to put your home on the market. This blog shows nationally the increasing number of homes that go on the market between January and April. Below is a trend based on last year from October 2009 through and including April 2010.

You do seem more of a jump on homes listed in Prince George's County and Montgomery County than in Washington,DC which could be because Washington,DC is more transcient. Never the less even in Washington, DC you can see that OVER 5 TIMES THE NUMBER OF HOME OWNERS LISTED THEIR HOMES FOR SALE IN APRIL 2010 THAN IN OCTOBER 2010.
In MONTGOMERY COUNTY WE SEE THAT OVER 8 TIMES THE NUMBER OF HOME SELLER LISTED THEIR HOMES FOR SALE IN APRIL 2010 COMPARED TO OCTOBER 2009. FINALLY,IN PRINCE GEORGE'S COUNTY , LIKE WASHINGTON, DC WE SEE THAT OVER 5 TIMES THE NUMBER OF HOME OWNERS LISTED THEIR HOMES FOR SALE IN APRIL 2010 THAN IN OCTOBER 2009.
Beat the competition.


October 09: 23 in Washington,DC; 26 in Montgomery County,MD;
56 In Prince George's County
November 09: 31 in Washington DC; 39 in Montgomery County;
63 in Prince George's County

December 09: 44 in Washington, DC; 105 in Montgomery County;
64 in Prince George's County

January 10: 36 in Washington DC; 45 in Montgomery County;
120 in Prince George's County

February 10: 59 in Washington,DC; 54 in Montgomery County;
97 in Prince George's County

March 10:
121 in Washington, DC; 127 in Montgomery County; 241 in Prince George's County

April 10: 120 in Washington, DC; 216 in Montgomery County; 314 in Prince George's County


Nationwide,we also see a spike in real estate inventory between January and April:
January – 3,277,000 listed
February – 3,531,000 listed
March – 3,626,000 listed
April – 4,029,000 listed



Another good point is list before all the foreclosures are rolled out...as blog calls "discounted inventory" which might pull attention away from your home. And,interest rates are amazing for buyers.

Interest rates today are 4.19 (depending on your credit and lender,points).Professor Karl E. Case, the founder of the Case Shiller Pricing Index in an article in the New York Times last month actually did the math for us:

"Four years ago, the monthly payment on a $300,000 house with 20 percent down and a mortgage rate of about 6.6 percent was $1,533. Today that $300,000 house would sell for $213,000 and a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with 20 percent down would carry a rate of about 4.2 percent and a monthly payment of $833 … housing has perhaps never been a better bargain." Buyers can afford to buy more house if you will because of the amazing interest rates.

A lot of buyers really are out and may be turning from looking to shopping. At this time of year, the ‘lookers’ are at the stores doing their holiday shopping. The home buyers left in the market are serious and are more apt to make a purchasing decision. Less showings – but to more motivated purchasers who will buy a good home in condition and value.

For a FREE-PRE- MARKET ANALYSIS and to get your home on the market IMMEDIATELY BEFORE THE SPRING LISTINGS AND FORECLOSURE ROLL OUTS,contact me today.

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD. & DC
Weichert Realtors
301-943-4370 = CELL ANYTIME
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
301-718-4100 ext. 132
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Tips when listing your home for sale


1. Be comfortable that the realtor you are interviewing provides full service,is easy to reach.

2. Listen to your realtor's suggested price/price range for listing your home. Part of the reason you are hiring a realtor is because he/she knows the market and has seen other homes in your neighborhood that have been listed and sold. He/she is using sales data and important neighborhood knowledge in suggesting the list price/prce range. If you strongly disagree with the agent's price opinion,you can either make an agreement up front to try your price and after a certain time period reduce to the price he/she suggests. That being said, the market does change and his/her price opinion may change based on market activity since your home has been on the market. Also consider getting an appraisor to come in and give his/her price opinion so you have a general idea of what the bank thinks your home is worth,should a buyer come in who wants to purchase with a mortgage.

3. Tying to #2,ask your realtor which homes he/she is using for sales comparables and ask why they are good comps.

4.Turn the lights off! Most buyers ask for utility bills. Montgomery County requires sellers of primary residents to disclose their utility bills for the last 12 months.
"Energy wasters" who sell a home will rue the times they forgot to turn off lights, turn down the air conditioner or left the TV on all day. It would be ill-advised to fake the amount of energy being used by simply living in the dark and cutting utility costs to nearly zero. However, careful and prudent use of energy can cut bills by enough so that a buyer does not have sticker shock about what it costs to maintain electricity, gas or oil to run a house.

5.Sell "Green". Not very many homes are actually built with environmentally friendly material or heated by solar panels or wind. But those that are have a special appeal to the crowd that buys green cars such as the Prius. A seller may have one of only a few "green" homes in their town or city. That may make it highly desirable to many shoppers.

6. Get a home inspection before your home is on the market so you are aware of issues and can repair them before buyers come through. Buyers often use the home inspection report as a negotiating point. You may be saving thousands of dollars by knowing and addressing inspection items up front instead of waiting for a buyer to ask for as subsidy.

Have any questions about your home and the home sale process? Give me a call; I am here to help

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckeman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Monday, October 11, 2010

Do you think you understand agency? Don't think so;know so!



I was on a teleconference call last week where the topic was agency,specifically with buyers. This is because when a home is listed for sale with a realtor,typically a realtor will have the seller sign listing papers including understanding who the agent represents. I don't know a realtor who would list a house for sale without a formal listing agreement.

The challenge comes into play with buyers and buyer agency. There wasn't always buyer agency and so many realtors who have been in the business 20+ years out of habit may not explain who the agent represents and what buyer agency is/is not. There are agents today who are reluctant to explain agency to their clients.I believe there are 2 reasons for this. First, agents fear losing buyers to agents who don't have buyers sign these documents. Second, many of today's home buyers are told not to sign any agreements "tying them down". On top of that,they may have previously worked with a realtor who didn't explain to them Understanding Who the Agent Represents and the Buyer Agency Agreement.

I learned recently of a situation where the listing agent for a home in Maryland found the buyer for the home he was selling. So,the listing agent was "working both sides of the deal",if you were. In Maryland a listing agent cannot be the agent of the home buyer...the home buyer has to decline buyer agency on the home.. In Washington,DC a listing agent can be the buyer agent for the home she or he is listing.

The buyer had remorse. Apparently it was beyond fear of purchasing,but rather not wanting that specific house. I say that because shortly after settlement the buyer put the home on the market for sale with a different realtor with no home improvements and at a similar price to what it was listed at. The buyer is going to lose money in the sale but is selling it anyway because they don't want the house.

Now,not being involved in the transaction,there are ways that the buyer could have backed out of the contract. One way the buyer could have walked on the deal, and this is without seeing the contract, was on the inspection. The buyer would even get the earnest money deposit back if it was within contingency period. In a worst case scenario the buyers could have not shown up at settlement and forfeited their earnest money deposit. I take that back...in the worst case the buyers could have gone through with the sale and turned around and sold the house again without improvements to it and lost money in the deal. There are/might be other ways the buyer could have walked on the contract,but without seeing the contract, I don't wish to speculate.

The point which I wish to articulate is that in Maryland,a listing agent's fiduciary responsibility is to the seller, so if you are the buyer for the listing and your agent is also the listing agent, you aren't getting representation according to Maryland real estate law. You are getting a secretary who writes down what the buyer tells him or her,treats the buyer "fairly" and doesn't represent the buyer's interests. If the buyers had buyer reperesentation, a buyer agent,and they told the buyer agent that they wanted to get out of the deal,the buyer agent would have/should have discussed strategy on technical ways they could get out of the contract or negotiate with the seller. If the buyer wanted representation,he could have asked the listing agent to refer him to another agent,even an agent in his brokerage. Even though the agents are in the same brokerage,called "dual agency" in Maryland,the listing agent is only representing the seller's interest, and the buyer agent is representing the buyer's interest. The listing agent's job was to push the transaction and settlement through since the seller wanted the house sold and to move to the next phase of his life. The seller didn't want to lose a buyer.


In my heart of hearts, upfront the buyers/now sellers probably didn't think much of having an agent working both sides of the deal and having representation until they were in too deep. They obviously think they got taken advantage of because they listed the home with another realtor. Legally, the listing agent fulfilled his duties to the sellers,but it is an unfortunate situation that could have been resolved earlier if the listing agent (1)either did a good job explaining agency and that in this deal he could represent the buyer and the buyer was ok with that or (2)ask the buyer if he wanted another realtor to represent his interests on this transaction.

Another recent situation. I am now working with a buyer who was previously with another agent. The buyer actually almost bought a house with the other agent,but lost in a bid. During negotiations the buyer starting asking the agent questions, felt some concern regarding their interests and finally asked the agent who the agent was representing. The agent said that he was representing the seller. Agency may work differently by juristiction, and my guess is that the agent didn't go through with the buyers on Understanding Who the Agent Represents and Buyer Agency.

Is it possible for there to be real estate transactions,where both the seller and the buyer feel they get good fair deals when one realtor is working both sides of the deal? Yes,but only when both sides understand agency and no issues arise during the transaction.

A word to the wise. With what all of your friends tell you,what you read in the newspaper and on the internet and what you may have personally experienced in a real estate transaction,don't assume you understand who the agent represents and how agency currently works in your juristiction. As much as you may be skeptical about reading and signing documents,be skeptical when there isn't a discussion about Understanding Who the Agent Represents and agency agreements until a contract is written.

If you would like to talk more about agency in Maryland and Washington DC as well as discuss the market,I'd be delighted to hear from you.

Life is good!

Adam
Cell: 301-943-4370

adambashein@mris.com

www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein

Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors

7821 Tuckerman Lane

Potomac, MD 20854

301-718-4100 ext. 132

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Co-signing a lease,the debt to income ratio may change based on the landlord

I was with a client recently looking for a home for her son to rent.
Based on the landlord's requirements, the son didn't qualify on his own financially to rent the home so my client had to either sign as a guarantor or they had to find another home to rent.

The landlord said that financially his renter's income had to be 3 times the monthly rent and if the renter used a co-signer/guarantor the income of the
co-signer/guarantor had to be 4 times the monthly rent. Why? In addition to the
co-signer/guarantor's current expenses, he/she would now be legally bound to additional expenses on this other home if the renter was unable to pay the rent.

A co-signer/guarantor is taking on more debt so his/her debt to income ratio just increased. Similary,in a home purchase,when a buyer needs another person co-signs on the loan, the person co-signing is taking on a further obligation which will impact his/her credit/purchasing power the next time he/she is considering taking out a loan/refinancing/purchasing another home.

So a landlord might consider enhancing the rental qualifications when a tenant needs a co-signer. A person co-signing/being a guarantor should think it through whether taking on this additional financial obligation is going to prevent him/her from getting a loan in the near future that he or she would have qualified for (if he or she didn't take on being a co-signer/guarantor.


Thinking of buying,selling or renting a home? If you are renting,also consider if you could buy a home with the monthly rent you are paying.
Let me know because I am here to help.

Life is good!

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
Cell: 301-943-4370
Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
Office: 301-718-4100
Desk: ext. 132

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Does your home have these features? If your home is on the market, are selling them to home buyers?


As we experience the Metro DC heat,allow me to suggest a couple of items/features of your home to highlight first to improve the saleability of your home. If your home doesn't have these items/features,consider the cost of them and how much return you will get in the successful sale of your home. I'd be happy to come over for a pre-market evaluation of your home.

1. Energy Efficient Appliances, Insulation and Windows
2. New air conditioning unit
3. Ceiling fans
4. Outdoor living space: Patio/Balcony/Screened porch/Front porch
5. Covered parking - carport or garage. Call it "shaded parking",so your seat and steering wheel aren't boiling when you get into your car.
6. Shaded yard.
7. Home office. A great feature in homes,but could be seen as a particular value in the summer,if,for instance,a home buyer's child(ren)are at home. The buyer needs to stay home so supervise the kids and also may need to work.
8. A fixed heating/ac cost. Turn around a "negative" if you have a high condo fee,but the cost includes includes your heating/ac no matter what the temperature is set at. Most single family homes,even townhouses and condominiums have utility bills that vary each month by use. Their bills are probably very high
during heat waves and blizzards,while your bill stays the same (because it is built into your condo fee).
9.Master baths with a great soaking tub and a separate shower..

10. If you own a pool or home is part of a Home Owner's Association and the fee includes membership to a pool. If it doesn't,perhaps offer the home buyer one season of pool membership.

If you know anybody who is considering selling his or her home,I appreciate you passing my contact information to them and letting them know about my free pre-market evaluation

Adamadambashein@mris.comwww.basheinhomes.info
301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Mortgage rates are great. Calculate your monthly payments

Did you know that if you buy a $300k home today with a 30 year fixed rate of 5% and your down payment on the home is 10% that your monthly mortgage payment is $1449? How does that compare to your monthly rent?In 2010 to date the median sales price of homes in Montgomery County is $330k with 3k+ homes sold! In Washington,DC this year nearly 2k homes have sold at a median sales price of $365k.

If you are curious about what your monthly mortgage payment would be at different price levels? Contact your lender today to get approved for a loan and discuss different scenarios regarding purchase price,down payment and mortage rate.
You can also explore different financing options by going to my website, www.basheinhomes.info, under 'financial tools'. However,you do need to speak with an actual lender to get approved for a loan.

By the way,I always have time for your referrals.


Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
CELL: 301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Sellers who regret not selling their home


I've been working with buyers in a neighborhood where there is a small supply of
homes on the market that meet their criteria.

I contacted home owners who have taken their houses off the market during the last several months to let them know I am working with buyers in their neighborhood,if they know neighbors thinking of selling and/or if they're still interested in selling.

One former seller told me that someone inquired about renting his home shortly after their home was put on the market. The owners decided to rent the home out. Now the renter is 3 months behind on rent. The owners are irrate,beside himself and working on the eviction process,which is taxing and time consuming. They wish that they sold their home instead of renting it out,even though the market value of their home isn't where they want it to be.

They told me to call again at the end of the month to see where he is in the eviction process and if my buyer hasn't found a home yet. The sellers were reasonable and happy to talk with me about their situation,wanting to sell even though they are in a tough situation with their tenant.

As I tell all my clients, just because a home 'is not on the market' doesn't mean it isn't for sale. I keep my eyes and ears out for them. That is part of my marketing effort as their realtor.

Meanwhile, I will continue to explore other options for this buyer.

By the way,if you know anybody in MD or DC looking to buy or sell a home,I always have time for thier referrals.

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
CELL: 301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Friday, June 4, 2010

Time to clean the gutters and increase your curb appeal,if you are getting ready to sell your home and want to make a good first impression on buyers.


Valuable information for buyers and sellers.
With warm weather here, it's the ideal time to make
sure your gutters are in tip-top shape, especially if
you are thinking of selling or have your home on the
market. A well-maintained home creates a better first
impression, so it is important to repair any gutter
problems before they lead to a squandered
opportunity.
Here are a few tips to get you started:
• Ensure gutters are free of leaves, sticks and other debris. Do it yourself
by clearing the muck and then flushing the gutters with water to make
sure it drains properly, or hire a professional gutter cleaner.
• If you notice any leaks when testing the water flow, use gutter sealant to
seal the leaky gutter joints.
• Inspect for any sagging gutters. If any are located, they can easily and
inexpensively be fixed by replacing faulty or missing hangers that secure
gutters to the house.
You can have your gutters looking brand new, and increase the curb appeal of
your home, in just a few short hours and with only a little cash out of pocket.

By the way if you are thinking of selling your home or someone you know is thinking of selling their home,contact me for a free pre-market home evaluation. I always have time for your referrals.


Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
CELL: 301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

If you are a business owner and want to buy a home,make sure to always pay yourself a salary or a bonus,no matter how good or bad business is


Are you a business owner? Pay yourself as though someone else is your boss. Even if business is slow,at least give yourself "a bonus" (less than what you regularly pay yourself) to show consistent income (even if not a consistent level). Without doing this you can damage your credit score. One of my clients didn't pay ...themselves (co-owners of a business) for 4 months,during the rough winter and consequentally,at this point in time cannot get a loan.

Below is a link with an interesting article on this subject:

http://smallbusiness.yahoo.com/r-article-a-114495-m-2-sc-53-youre_the_boss._make_sure_youre_getting_paid-i

Curious about your credit score and purchasing power? Contact me today
for a free consulation.

By the way,if you know anybody in Maryland or Washington,DC looking to sell or buy a home,I always have time for their referrals.

I'm wherever you want to be in Metro DC.

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Monday, May 10, 2010

Guidance on your home search



There are eight common emotional mistakes that people make when buying a home. Avoiding these pitfalls will help you find the best home-sweet-home. (To learn more about how your emotions can cause financial distress, see When Fear And Greed Take Over and Master Your Trading Mindtraps.)

Mistake 1: Falling in love with a house you can't afford
Get approved for a loan before looking at homes and know what the most you can afford to pay for a home,with the loan and cash.
Once you've fallen in love with a particular home, it's hard to go back. You start dreaming about how great your life would be if you had all the wonderful things it offered - the lovely, tree-lined streets, the jetted bathtub, the spacious kitchen with professional-grade appliances. However, if you can't or won't be able to afford that house, you're just hurting yourself. To avoid the temptation to get in over your head financially, or the disappointment of feeling like you're settling for less than you deserve, it's best to only look at homes in your price range.

Further, start your search at the low end of your price range - if what you find there satisfies you, there's no need to go higher. Remember, when you buy another $10,000 worth of house, you're not just paying an extra $10,000 - you're paying an extra $10,000 plus interest, which might come out to double that amount or more over the life of your loan. You may be better off putting that money toward another purpose. (For further reading, check out Buying a House in a Down Market.)

Mistake 2: Thinking that a particular house is the only one that will suit you
Unless you are a high-end buyer looking at custom homes, chances are that for any home you find that you like, there are quite a few others that are nearly identical to it. Most neighborhoods have multiple homes that are the same model. Further, most neighborhoods are full of homes that were all constructed by the same builder, so even if you can't find an identical model for sale, you can probably find a house with many of the same features. If you're considering a condo or townhouse, the odds are also in your favor.

Balance out your wants and needs.

Mistake 3: Being so desperate to become a homeowner that you buy a place that doesn't suit you
When you've been looking for a while and you're not seeing anything you like - or worse, you're getting outbid on the houses you do want - it's easy to start thinking that what you really want simply won't happen. Balance what you want in a home with what you need in a home. If you think that you will live at the home you buy for the next 20-30 years,then continue in your home search to focus highly on your wants as well as needs. Be patient with your search if you can comfortablly live in your current home.

If you think you will be moving again in a few years,the home doesn't have to be everything you dreamed off. That being said, don't buy a home for the sake of buying. If you move into a house you'll end up hating, the transaction costs to get rid of it will be costly. You'll have to pay an agent's commission (up to 6% of the sale price) and you'll have to pay closing costs for the mortgage on your new house. You'll also deal with the hassle and expense of moving yet again. If you decide not to move but to try to make the best of what you have, remember that alterations and renovations are expensive, time-consuming and stressful. The best advice is to wait if you have the luxury of time, or to correct your vision for your future to what you actually need, not want. (To learn more, check out McMansion: A Closer Look at the Big House Trend.)

Mistake 4: Overlooking important flaws in the structure, appearance or location of the house
For any of the three reasons we just discussed, you might be tempted to ignore major problems with the house that will be difficult, expensive or impossible to change. Carefully consider your options before you make a commitment, and consider waiting until something better comes along. New houses come on the market every day.

Mistake 5: Thinking you're a handyman when you're not
Don't buy a fixer-upper that's more than you can handle in terms of time, money or ability. For example, if you think you can do the work yourself then realize you can't once you get started, any repairs or upgrades you were planning to make will probably cost twice as much once you factor in the labor - and that may not be in your budget. Not to mention the costs involved to fix anything you may have started and the fees to replace the materials you wasted. Honestly evaluate your abilities, your budget and how soon you need to move before purchasing a property that isn't move-in ready. (For related reading, check out Your Car: Fixer-Upper or Scrap Metal?)

Mistake 6: Putting in an offer before carefully considering all the pros and cons of the property
In a hot market (or even a hot submarket, with dirt-cheap, bank-owned properties during a housing slump) it may be necessary to pull the trigger very quickly if you find a home you like. However, you have to balance the need to make a quick decision with the need to make sure the home will be right for you. Don't neglect important steps like making sure the neighborhood feels safe at night as well as during the day and investigating possible noise issues like a nearby train. Ideally you'll be able to take at least a night to sleep on the decision. How well you sleep that night and how you feel about the home in the morning will tell you a lot about whether the decision you're about to make is the right one. Taking the time to consider the decision also gives you a chance to research how much the property is really worth and offer an appropriate price.

Mistake 7: Being too slow to pull the trigger

The home you are looking at today and may be thinking of placing an offer on tomorrow may be the same home that somebody saw yesterday and is thinking of placing a good offer on today.
It's a tough balancing act to make sure you make a careful decision yet don't take too long to make it. Losing out on a property that you were almost ready to make an offer on because someone beat you to it can be heartbreaking. It can also have economic consequences. Let's say you are self-employed. Perhaps for you more than anyone else, time is money. The more time and energy you have to take out of your normal activities to search for a house, the less time and energy you have available to work. Not dragging out the homebuying process unnecessarily may be the best thing for your business, and the continued success of your business will be essential to paying the mortgage. If you don't pull the trigger quickly, someone else might, and you'll have to keep looking. Don't underestimate how time-consuming and routine-disrupting house shopping can be. (A small business can increase your disposable income. To learn how to set one up, see How To Make A Million In Your Small Business and Starting A Small Business In Tough Economic Times.)

Mistake 8: Offering more than a house is worth
If there's a lot of competition in your market and you find a place you really like, it's all too easy to get sucked into a bidding war - or to try to preempt a bidding war by offering a high price in the first place. There are a couple of potential problems with this. If you offer over asking,strongly consider an appraisal contingency. The bank won't give you the loan if the home doesn't appraise. The seller reduces the price or you pay cash for the difference. Make sure the purchase price for the home you buy is reasonable for both the house and the location by examining comparable sales and getting your agent's opinion before making an offer. Your buyer agent will help you with this.

Thinking about buying a home? Let's talk. I am here to help

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext.132

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

What is your home worth? What did it appraise at and what is the home assessment?


Surprised,perhaps unhappy with your recent home appraisal or assessment on your home,let's talk. I spoke with a client about his home.
He is trying to refinance his current mortgage. In his opinion,the appraisal came in low. So we discussed his home and the real estate market. I then looked up similar homes that recently sold and gave them to him so he can start the appeal process.
I can't guarantee a result since I am a realtor and not a certified appraiser.
If you are in a similar situation,give me a call, I am here to help.

And,if you hear of somebody who is thinking of selling his/her home,I always appreciate your referrals.

Life is good!

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The listing edge for home sellers who list with me.


Do you & your friends NEED THE EXTRA EDGE for selling your homes?

A NEW & UNIQUE product in my full service marketing plan is 'Listing Edge'.

This will make your homes,when listing with me, more attractive to qualified buyers than other homes in the neighborhood that are on the market for sale.

This product will:
*differentiate your home in the marketplace
*increase calls on property
*turn more home lookers into buyers


Let's talk about the market and your moving plans.

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info

CELL: 301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Testimonial letter from a satisfied client in Maryland

December 12, 2009



Dear Adam:

It was a pleasure doing business with you. We sincerely thank you for all of your efforts in finding us a home for our move from Florida and we would happily recommend your services to anyone who would be looking to rent, buy, or sell a home in the area. We especially appreciate that you checked in with us after we moved in to see how our move was going and to ensure everything with the repairs was going as planned.

We appreciate you outstanding service, professionalism, and attention to detail. On a personal note, we both have enjoyed our conversations and e-mail correspondence. We will confidently and happily refer our friends and acquaintances to you.

Thank you again for all of your hard work.

Sincerely,


Chaundi and Natalie Randolph, Esqs.

Thank you,Chaundi and Natalie.
I appreciate your business and always have time for people's referrals,which I am very grateful for.

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

As the deadline for 1st time and repeat buyer tax credit approaches,housing prices are going up. Make sure you have an agent who knows the market


Interesting real estate article in Washington Examiner.
Sellers are perceiving that buyers will pay more for a house than the otherwise would because they want to take advantage of the first time or repeat buyer tax credit,where a buyer must get a home under contract by April 30,2010 and settle by June 30,2010.

The sellers see the tax credit as a product in heavy demand that buyers are getting in line for in the next 6 weeks or so. They are probably right. But,buyers more than ever,especially those with buyer agents who know the market and have access to the sales comparables,can tell when a house is priced outside the market.

Why would a buyers put an offer on a home for tens of thousands of dollars over asking price,when the tax credit limit for first time home buyers is $8000 and for repeat buyers it is $6500? The tax credit is more than offset,for lack of better words,by this pricing strategy.

There is also a lot of housing inventory out there,so the only way this strategy only works,I think, if a buyer needs a specific model home,in a specific subdivision and this model in this specific subdivision rarely comes up...and it is a highly sought after model that may bring multiple offers.

To me,sellers should be listing their homes for sale based on the market and the property condition of their homes. Many buyers want homes that are updated and show well. Otherwise their homes will sit on the market for a while,beyond April 30, 2010 and risk buyers who didn't find a home stepping back onto the fence unless their is another first time/repeat buyer program created. Again,sellers


http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/economy/Home-prices-jump-as-tax-credit-deadline-approaches-87619552.html

If you want to talk about the market,let me know. I am here to help.
I am whereever you want to be in Metro DC.

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132


Oh,by the way,I am never too busy for your referrals.

Friday, March 12, 2010

With today's mortgage rates + the $8k and $6500 tax credit,you can buy a lot of house. Sellers: these can be your buyers.



It is a great day to buy your home. The lower the interest rate,the more house you can buy! And if eligible you can still take advantage of the first time home buyer $8k tax credit or the $6500 repeat buyer tax credit,if you find a home,get under contract by the end of April and settle by the end of June. If you are thinking of buying,contact me for a free home buyer consultation to determine your purchasing power and the area(s)you want to buy in.

It is also a great day to put your home on the market to sell. The more house buyers can buy, the more potential buyers are out there considering your home,if your home is priced well,shows well and marketed well. Contact me for a free pre-market consultation.

Below are interest rates from Jacob Darwish @ Weichert Financial Services.
Please contact him for additional details and options. 301-807-0449 - Direct:
301-807-0449 - Direct: 301-718-4100 ext. 110 – Office



• 30 Year Fixed
Loan Amount up to $417,000 4.875% / 0 points
• 30 Year Fixed
Loan Amount $417,001 - $729,750 4.990% / 0 points

• 5 Year ARM
Loan Amount up to $417,000 3.625% / 0 points

• 5 Year ARM
Loan Amount $417,001 - $729,750 3.875% / 0 points

• Jumbo 5 Year ARM
Loan Amount up to $1,500,000 4.625% / 0 points

• Jumbo 7 Year ARM
Loan Amount up to $1,500,000 5.000% / 0 points

• FHA 30 Year Fixed 5.000% / 0 points

• VA 30 Year Fixed 5.000% / 0 points

Remember, I am anywhere you want to be in Metro DC and I always have time for your referrals.

Adam Bashein
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
301-943-3470

Adam Bashein
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Friday, March 5, 2010

From 'Cradle to Grave' in Kemp Mill Estates



Welcome to 718 Horton Drive in sought after Kemp Mill Estates. Listed by Long & Foster. This home is in a very desirable quadrant of Kemp Mill,located between Lamberton Drive and Kemp Mill Road. While the home isn't on a cul-de-sac street and Horton Drive isn't a "no outlet street",it is a short quiet destination street. Most people don't drive on Horton in order to enter or exit the subdivision since it doesn't connect main roads.
Another interesting feature about Horton Drive is that the "even side" of the street has a sidewalk,which stops just before 718 Horton Drive.

718 Horton Drive has a driveway and has good curb appeal. You can tell the home is well kept. You can enter through the front door,or the side door where the kitchen is. In addition the home has a walkout basement with sliding doors to a lovely fenced backyard. The backyard is a generous size and includes a basketball court and a storage shed.

Once you enter through the front door you will need to take one step up or several step downs. To your immediate left is the coat closet;straight ahead is the entry foyer,which you need to step up into;almost immediately in front of you are the steps to the basement and to the right is the kitchen,which you step up into. Not a big deal to take one step up to the main level area,but surprised, with the concept of a rambler,that the builder didn't design the entry to be competely level with the rest of the area.

The kitchen is well maintained. It has a front bay window and a side entrance. The counters and floors are clean and original. There is room for a diner table in the kitchen. The sellers chose to give the buyers an opportunity to make the kitchen their own and factored that into their asking price of $459k. The dining room and living room are open. The sellers had the home painted over the summer so it is fresh and clean.

The master bedroom is at the end of the hallway on the left side. It is has 2 exposures and built in closet/shelf space. The bathroom is clean and room to add a medicine cabinet for toiletries. The second bedroom,right across from the master bedroom also has 2 exposures and 2 sets of closets. The third bedroom has one closet and appears smaller than the second bedroom. There is a second full bath in the hall for the other 2 bedrooms and guests to use.

Downstairs is a nice family room/play area and there are sliding doors to the backyard.
To your immediate left of the play area is a full bath and a generous sized laundry area. Not everyone with this home model has a full bath in the basement (and wouldn't be hard to add if they didn't),but it makes perfect sense,with there being bedrooms downstairs and adds value.
Down the hall is one bedroom with 2 exposures and a closet. I'd add a carpet. To the right of the steps is the second downstairs bedroom,again,which not all models have and this adds value to the home. The bedroom has closet space and a window. Some owners of this model leave the area unfinished,perhaps to use as storage space,and there is storage space under the steps. Other owners have finished this room,but it doesn't have a window. So it has value as an office,but might not be considered a full bedroom.

The home shows well,is very clean and move in ready. If you want a fully updated home then preview this home. If you like it,figure out the costs of the renovations you would do and if the numbers work.

There is a similar home located at 11725 Stonington Road,which is more upgraded than 718 Horton Drive. However,11725 Stonington only has 1 bedroom downstairs (if you want a 5th bedroom/office,you would need to finish the area). In addition,it has a 1/2 bath downstairs (no shower or tub).

The thing you cannot change to 718 Horton Drive without structural work is if you want/need the home to be on one floor. In order to go the backyard from inside the home,you need to go downstairs. If you want a family room on the main level (get an addition),you could perhaps set up the living room as a family room if you don't need a larger area and change it to more of a living room when you are entertaining a large group of guests. .

Again,the home is neat,well kept,on a side street in a sought after section of Kemp Mill.

If you or someone you know is interesting in seeing the home,let me know.

Life is good!

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Close in Country living: 3 bedroom, 3 full bath rambler in Silver Spring on just under an acre of land


Welcome to 508 Rockford Drive in Springbrook Forest,close in This 3 bedroom 3 bath brick rambler home sits on a lovely lot,just less than an acre of land. Home is on a mostly level lot. You may have seen or heard about this home before. It was originally listed in March 2008 for $575k,then relisted in November 2009 at $550k,before being rented in January 2009. It is now vacant and listed by Long & Foster at $499k.

The driveway leads to 2 covered parking spaces,with a carport and a 1 car garage. Right above the garage is a lovely porch for you to enjoy views of the trees. Porch makes a great area to relax in and a nice breakfast area.
You go up some steps to the front entrance. On the left is a kitchen which you can make into your own. It is in average condition.
There is a door from the ktichen to the porch. The kitchen also leads to the dining room which has hardwoods and continues into the living room with the hardwoods. There is a fire place in the living room area. The master bedroom has a skylight and a private full bath,which is in good usable shape. You may choose to upgrade it. Down the hall are 2 other bedrooms,one of which has a unique feature -its own private bath. There is also a 3rd full bath in the hallway.
The laundry is downstairs as is the entrance from the garage into the home. The downstairs is an average size.
This is a nice warm home,which one could make into his or her own as is and be happy or add on/tear down and build a home of his/her dreams.
It is priced ok based on scarcity of lot type, but not great based on a recent sale at 601 Rockford, also a rambler, which is on an ever so slightly smaller lot. 601 Rockford sold for $472k. When comparing the two homes,601 Rockford has 4 bedrooms and 2.5 baths. It also has a larger basement than 508 Rockford. To me 601 Rockford felt like more living space than 508 Rockford. But there aren't many homes on this size lot on the market. If 12043 Remington,which is 2 + acres and listed at
$499,900k sells before 508 Rockford,it will impact the price position of 508 Rockford.

If you or someone you know is interested in previewing the home,call me.

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Oh,by the way,I am never too busy for your referrals.

Country living 3 bedroom rambler on 2.23 acres of land in Springbrook forest



Welcome to 12043 Remington Drive in Springbrook Forest,a subdivision in Silver Spring,MD. This is unique opportunity in Silver Spring to buy a 3 bedroom, 2 bath home on 2.23 acres of land at the list price of $499,900.

This brick home has a nice country feel,with a wood fence in front of the home and the home being nested by trees. The driveway leads to your one car garage

There is a walking path to the main entrance of the home. To your right is the living room with hardwood floors and a fireplace,that contniues into the dining room area. From the dining room,you can go outside to the porch ,which is above the garage. Dining room also leads into the kitchen,which also has a door to the porch. The kitchen has some updated appliances: s/s refridgerator and s/s dishwasher. The oven is dated and pretty small if you like to cook,much less entertain. But a new oven shouldn't deter you. The kitchen overall is average and could use some upgrading.

The home has 3 bedrooms on the main level,including a master bedroom with a private full bath. There is a second full bath in the hallway for the other 2 bedrooms to share.
Downstairs is the basement which is a fairly nice size,is unfinished,but has potential. The garage is attached to the basement.

This home has great potential whether you buy it as is and upgrade it or you want to build a custom home on a large piece of land. The home needs to be aired out a little,as there is a scent of smoke. The home is listed with Long & Foster. It is priced aggressively,as a home in the same subdivision on less than an acre of land recently sold for $472k and another home on just less than an acre is on the market for $499k. So in terms of land, this home is the a great value. I wouldn't be surprised if it gets multiple bids and sells at or above the asking price.

If you or someone you know is interested in previewing it let me know.

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info
301-943-4370

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Oh,by the way,I'm never too busy for your referrals.

information deemed to be accurate but not guaranteed.

Pricing your home to sell


I try to keep up with the status of homes which my buyers lost bids on and on homes which I didn't list. Why? For buyers,I want to know what homes sell at, so when other similar home comes on the market,we can refer to the home that they previously bid on and factor that into the price they offer.

From the listing side, I want to see what the homes sold at and compare that to the price range I suggested. Sellers choose their realtors based on several factors,including but not limited to a relationship they may have with a realtor,the marketing plan which impresses the sellers the most and the price which the listing agents suggest. I lost a listing agreement last spring less than 5 minutes in when the seller wanted to just know the price range I suggested. My range was over $30k less than what she had in mind.

For a home listed for less than $200k,that is quite a difference of opinion. She told me the conversation was over and was going to ask a neighborhood expert to list her home. I was fairly confident in the price I suggested,but maybe there was something about the neighborhood I didn't know. I felt badly that I lost the listing.

I noticed that the listing recently expired,over $30k above the price range I suggested. As much as I don't like losing listings,in this case I won because of the effort, money and time I would have invested if she chose me to list at "her price". From what I see,the market in that neighborhood hasn't improved since then,so hopefully she can list again at market price or rent her place out in order to move into the home of her dreams.

Adam
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC
Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Friday, February 19, 2010

Planning to buy a home with an FHA loan? There are changes coming up in April.


If you are in the market to buy a home with an FHA loan,but are "only looking casually", you should pick up the intensity of your home search,in hopes of finding the home of your dreams before April 1, 2010.

In addition,it goes without saying that you should intensify your home search if you are eligible for the $8000 first time home buyer tax credit or the $6500 repeat buyer tax credit. To qualify for these tax credits you must have a home under contract by the end of April and settle by the end of June.

Here are some changes with the FHA LOAN,which you will see:

1. UFIP (upfront mortgage insurance premium) is up 2.25%.

2. FHA loan borrowers with credit scores below 580 will need to make at least a 10% downpayment on their purchases. Lenders are being more conservative and responsible with loans. Lenders are under heavy scrutiny and need extra assurance from buyers with low credit scores,such as the larger downpayment,to show that they are going to be able to meet their mortgage obligations. The minimum downpayment for all other loans is still 3.5%.

3. FHA is going to heavily track the default rates of loans by lenders to make sure buyers are approved for loans that they are actually qualified for. If FHA notices in specific areas that a number of buyers using LENDER X are defaulting on their loans,then FHA will investigate the underwriters of the loans. Furthermore, FHA will prevent the lender(s)from issuing loans in this area(s). This will help cut down on future short sales and foreclosures.

4. Seller concessions/"closing help" will be reduced from 6% to 3%.
-In some cases seller concessions have more than covered buyers' closing costs and so buyers have used the extra closing help to buy down their mortgage rates. We will probably fewer cases of mortgage rates being bought down through seller concessions.

The good news is that mortgage rates are at a historic low so you can buy more house.


Please feel free to contact me with questions and more information on the Metro DC Real Estate Market.
I am here to help.

Adam
301-943-4370
adambashein@mris.com
www.basheinhomes.info

Adam Bashein
Licensed in MD & DC

Weichert Realtors
7821 Tuckerman Lane
Potomac,MD 20854
301-718-4100 ext. 132

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

For right now FHA loans can be used on quick purchases of bank owned properties

One criteria for a home being approved for an fha loan is that the seller owns the home for at least 90 days. The idea being that investors use FHA loans as a means to buy homes with low money down for the purchase of fixing up homes and reselling them quickly...marketing them for sale less than 90 days after he/she/the corporation purchased the home.

A challenge has been when home buyers find rehabbed homes that have just gone onto the market for sale and they want to purchase the homes as primary residence...not for the purchase of rehabbing and then reselling. In some cases sellers have put their homes on the market less than 90 days after purchasing the home and so buyers who intended on purchasing their homes with FHA loans have (a)often decided to continue their home search for an FHA eligible home (so the rehabbed homes have sat on the market for a long time) and some buyers (a)have had the patience to wait for the home to become "FHA eligible".


One of the highlights of the bill is that home owners who put their home on the market within 90 days to resell must have documentation justifying the sale price if it is 20% or higher than what the owner bought the home for (if within 90 days or less).

http://www.hud.gov/offices/hsg/sfh/waivpropflip2010.pdf