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Archive for February, 2010

You Must see inside!!! This Cute Super Starter is just minutes from downtown Grand Rapids, MI and a short walk to the Grand River & Veterans Park…

It’s definitely ready for savvy buyers who want to take advantage of the $6,500 to $8,500 Tax Credit!

No Short Sale hassle here

Purchase & move forward quickly.  You’ve still got until April 30,2010 to take advantage of the Home Buyer Tax Credit.  As you walk into this newly remodeled home, you feel right at home. There are Hardwood floors in living room and dining room. On the second floor is a spacious bonus room leading to a large Master Bedroom. A large Bonus room leading to the Master can serve as a nursery, a great office or sitting room. There’s also an additional storage room.

A New fence in backyard was put up in 2009.  The current owners created a cute playground area, but the yard has many possibilities.

Now, if you’ve been wondering what this home looks like on the INSIDE…Click on this Link and take a tour! Then contact Audu Real Estate at 616-791-0511 to see it for yourself!

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Your nest egg...I can remember a time (seems like ancient history now) when a home appraisal was good for 6 months.   Today,  sometimes you feel you’re lucky if it’s valid for 60 days! Volatility in the real estate market in the West Michigan area mirrors much of what is happening in other parts of the country.  Home prices have declined at record levels due to the economic upheaval in the financial markets and continuing challenges in the jobs sector.

The recent changes in appraisal standards has impacted many new purchases and generated a lot of discussion in the appraisal community.  For home buyers, these changes have sometimes resulted in home appraisals which were lower than the market price arrived at through agreement in an arm’s length transaction between a home seller and home buyer.

For home buyers who find that the appraisal value is lower than the sales price, there are few options.  They may be able to walk away from the transaction without financial penalty if the transaction is funded through a FHA loan (Federal Housing Authority) and all parties to the transaction have signed an Ammendatory Clause Addendum or face a decision about making up the difference between the appraised value and the purchase price.  This essentially means that a home buyer will be bringing additional cash to close on a transaction.  A good real estate agent can be of valuable assistance in negotiating a reduction in the sales price to accommodate for a low appraisal.

There are a few things that a home buyer should keep in mind when faced with this situation.  Although this list is not exhaustive, it provides a basic framework of consideration if you find yourself in this position.

1.  Don’t panic!  Get the facts!

Ask to see the appraisal.  Afterall, you have paid for it.  Sit down with your lender and real estate professional to review the comparables used by the licensed appraiser.

2.  Submit additional data!

Sometimes there have been recent sales which have not been reported which the appraiser may be unaware of.  Appraisers are human and can make mistakes or miss things.  You can submit additional data or home comparisons to the appraiser for consideration.  A licensed appraiser is not required to change his/her report based on your submission, but it’s worth some additional effort if you feel you have some information which gives a more complete profile of the property.

3.  Know the Housing Values in the Area!

One of the biggest challenges in determining home values today is the large number of foreclosed and distressed/short sale properties on the market.  Your proximity to sale of one of these properties will impact the amount of money the bank is willing to loan you on a home although this number may not be entirely reflective of the true market price of the home.  When making an offer, it is important to factor in the distressed sale activity in a given area and make appropriate adjustments.

4.   Consult with Qualified Professionals!

Most real estate contracts will include a clause which advises that consumers obtain appropriate counsel from qualified professionals.  When dealing with Short Sales or Distressed properties, this can be especially valuable.   If you have questions about the terms and obligations on your contract, it is wise to seek counsel.

A successful real estate transaction today requires patience, extensive market knowledge, good negotiation skills and the ability to create solutions which make sense for all parties.  If you’re in the West Michigan area, the agents at Audu Real Estate are available to serve you and answer your real estate questions.  Please contact us @ info@auduhomes.com.

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As home prices have decline precipitously over the past couple of years, many homeowners have discovered that the price that their home can sell for in the local real estate market may be far less than what is owed on the mortgage.  When a home is Sold under these conditions, the transaction is referred to as a Short Sale.

One question which is on some folks’ minds is whether continuing to make payments on a declining asset makes sense.  Particularly when they do not stand to make a dime on a home they have been making payments on for years. 

Well, although defaults on mortgages have increased significantly over the past several years due to the economic down-turn and there is a sharp increase in the number of folks who have made a strategic decision to default on mortgage loan payments although they can well afford the payments, it is prudent for anyone thinking about this option to consider the latest word from HUD (the Department of Housing & Urban Development) on the topic. 

 Here’s a link to the Mortgagee Letter, a document which provides guidance to lenders and underwriters about WHO will be able to qualify for new FHA loans if they have gone through a Short Sale.

Reading through the letter, it seems to make sense to stay current on your loan even while continuing to try to sell your home…even if that involves a Short Sale.

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