Why Wait? Even First Home Buyers Can Get The Home Of Their Dreams When They Build New

First home buyers may not typically consider building when purchasing their initial house, but there’s no reason not to. Today’s new homes are affordable, accessible, and provide many benefits over purchasing an existing home. It just may be the perfect way to move into your dream home much sooner than you expected.

Benefits of building a new home

There are plenty of reasons why home buyers in all stages of life turn to new developments, and there is no reason first time buyers should be excluded. Building your own home gives you:

Customisation. Depending on the builder, location, and design you choose, you can get a home just the way you want. Even if you can’t control every single aspect of design, chances are good that you’ll be able to tweak features to meet your desires and with hundreds of different designs to choose from you are sure to find one that suits your lifestyle..
Choices. Building your own home means you get to choose almost everything about it, from flooring, appliances and finishings, to exterior colours and landscaping. You move in and won’t have to change or update anything to suit your unique style and taste.

Cost Savings. Modern dwellings located in fast-growing suburbs can be less expensive than purchasing a property in the city centre where land is at a premium. This drives costs up and makes homeownership less achievable for some. Additionally, building a new home means you are essentially buying at wholesale prices not the retail prices of existing properties.

Decreased Maintenance. A new construction means everything is new. Buyers won’t have to worry about appliances breaking down shortly after they move in, needing to change out carpets or flooring, or having to make expensive repairs. All those unexpected costs add up and can put a strain on your pocket.

Financing Benefits Aside from the physical benefits of recently constructed dwellings, there are plenty of financial incentives that are available to first home buyers, and to those who build new homes over purchasing existing homes.

Construction-only loans can be more affordable than traditional mortgages and save you money on interest.

Builder incentives can help you to afford upgrades to your home that you couldn’t otherwise afford. You may even be able to afford a bigger home thanks to these incentives.

Builder-financing. Some builders work with lenders to provide in-house loan services, such as low-deposit loans, that could be more attractive than those offered by banks and other lenders.

Government Assistance. First home buyers can get $10,000 in government grants when building a new home. This is compared to only $3,000 available for the purchase of an existing home. Stamp duty concessions are also available which can save homebuyers thousands of dollars at settlement.

If you’re a first time buyer who never thought a newly constructed residence was an option, you owe it to yourself to visit a few builders and see what they have to offer. Once you see the builder’s designs and crunch the numbers, you may discover that your dream home is within reach.

Choosing the Right Builder

When you are in the market for a new built home, the opportunities are endless when it comes to location, style, and size. There are usually three types of residential new construction options. The first is what I call a “row house”. They are new developments that have set floor plans and optional upgrades, but generally most houses are similar in style and size. These properties offer little flexibility, but it can be an attractive option for those looking for a new home in an affordable price range.

The second type is usually in a higher price range, and in some type of development or subdivision. We focus a lot on this type of new construction. Custom builders will buy lots in these developments, and put the lot on the market for a “pre-sale” and find a buyer looking to custom build within the builders price range. A custom builder is a lot more flexible with the floor plan and as long as you abide by the subdivision building specifications, you can pretty much build whatever you want.

The third type, which is the least common, is buying a residential lot or acreage, and finding a builder to build your dream home on that lot. This is more common in rural areas and outside cities or subdivisions. This is by far the most flexible option, because the possibilities are endless! You can buy 20 acres and build a 10,000 square foot mansion, or buy 20 acres and build a 3 bedroom 2 bath 1500 sq. foot cottage; it is really all up to you and your budget.

With all of these building options comes the choice in builder. Row Houses are normally built and developed by 2-3 builders in a neighborhood, so if you are looking at this type of new construction, you will want to check out each builders spec and see which one you like the most. It is also extremely important to have a friendly relationship with the actual representative of the builder; this way if a problem arises the solution process is amicable.

Custom homes in a higher end subdivision normally have spec houses as well, and in this case it is imperative that you meet with the builder and know what kind of operation they have. Make sure everything is “in house”, meaning your draft person (the one designing the floor plan) and the contractor work together so you get a house that is affordable. Make sure to look at all of your options. Each builder has his or her own style and taste, so if you walk in to a spec and feel it is the opposite of what you like, keep looking.

Greensboro Real Estate Blog

Help to Buy Scheme a Success

Launched on the 8th October 2013, the government’s new Help to Buy scheme has already begun to transform the UK housing market. The scheme consists of two sub-schemes called Equity Loan and Mortgage Guarantee, the latter of which this article is concerned with. The Help to Buy Mortgage Guarantee scheme is aimed at assisting anyone that has been financially frozen out of the market. With many lenders requesting deposits of 20% or more of a property’s value in the wake of the subprime mortgage crisis the UK government realised the need to act and help those unable to raise such capital.

Under the scheme, lenders are encouraged to provide greater access to lower deposit mortgages. These mortgages are typically between 80-95% of a home’s value with the government providing a guarantee of up to 15% to the lender depending on the size of the deposit paid by the buyer. As an example, a lender could offer a 95% mortgage on a £200,000 house with the buyer only required to pay £10,000 (5%) as a deposit. The lender pays the government a commercial fee for which the government covers the lender for 15% of the home’s value. In this case that would be £30,000 of the remaining £190,000 owed by the buyer. So for this example the lender is able to offer the home buyer a mortgage for a mere 5% deposit whilst still being covered for 20% of the home’s value.

With figures like these it is of little surprise that the government is heralding the fledgling scheme as a success. What’s even better is that the scheme is refreshingly inclusive. The maximum home purchase under the Help to Buy scheme is a whopping £600,000 and this applies to both new build and existing homes. This not only helps first time buyers to reach the first rung of the property ladder but also aids those aspiring to move up the ladder or buy the home of their dreams.

On average, over 2,000 people each month have taken advantage of the scheme since its inception. That means at least 2,000 people per month are submitting a Help to Buy mortgage application and putting an offer in on a new or existing home. The government claims that within the first 12 weeks of the launch, almost 750 homeowners had completed home purchases under the scheme. It has been such a success that more and more lenders have been encouraged to take part, leading to greater choice for the home buyer. Nearly all of the big banks are signed up to the scheme so competition is rife amongst lenders. In recent times there has never been such a great opportunity for home buyers to buy the house of their dreams. However, the Help to Buy scheme will not be around indefinitely so those wishing to take advantage are advised to act now.

Buying A New Home? Learn How To Negotiate

Purchasing real estate can often feel unnerving. It should calm your nerves somewhat to realize just how lucrative wisely planned and executed real estate investments can be. This article will help both real estate newbies and veterans improve their knowledge of the real estate market.

You need to stay moderate when you are dealing with real estate purchases. Do not be too extreme with your offers. Some people feel as though they should be aggressive in order to get the best price; this can backfire on them. You can have a firm idea of what you want to pay, but let the Realtor and lawyers have some leeway.

Each agent should connect with former clients on special occasions to maintain the relationship. If you stay in contact with them, you will be reminding them how much you helped them with the buying or selling of their real estate. At the close of your greeting, remind them that you work on a referral basis and would consider it a compliment if they would recommend you to their friends.

Oftentimes, homes that need major improvements are offered at lower prices. Purchasing one of these lets you save money, and you can put work into the home at your pace and on your budget. Doing this allows you to make the design changes you want, and also build valuable equity in the home through improvement projects. So try to focus on what the house could be, or its potential, as opposed to looking at the negatives involved with its current state. Your dream home may just be hiding behind that cracked, outdated paneling.

Buying commercial property can be easier if you have a partner that you can trust. This will help you qualify for the commercial mortgage loan easier as you proceed in buying the property. You may be able to qualify for a loan that you cannot qualify for alone by having a partner. A partner may be able to help with a down payment as well as lowering your debt-to-income ratio.

Should a seller decline your offer on their home, don’t fret, because they do want to sell, and they might be creative enough to manifest an opportunity to make the price affordable to you. The seller may offer to make some repairs that you want done or pay for closing costs.

When shopping for your new home, it is important to consider future needs. You might not have children right now, but if you are going to stay in this house for a long time and you will one day want kids, you should check out the schools that are in the area and make sure you would want your future kids to go there.

More than likely, when you purchase real estate, it will be the biggest decision and purchase you may ever make. The tips in this article have given you the confidence needed to go out and purchase real estate, and help you to not succumb to the difficulties some face when making these decisions.

7 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Agent for New Home Construction

1. It’s FREE. A licensed real estate agent generally collects 3% from each side (buyers side/ sellers side) of the sale of a home. You are paying the same commission without hiring an agent; so why not go in with that extra protection knowing they have your best interest in mind.

2. Knowledge. A realtor who knows the area you are buying in can educate you on the options you have for existing sales and new construction. They can also address certain qualities of each of the new home builders (which are the most energy efficient, who charged for every single upgrade you view in the model.). Some are priced a whopping $100k over the base price of the model.

3. Negotiations. Many builders will try to control each part of your selection from lot location to upgrades, but an experienced neighborhood realtor will be able to explain when something is normal and customary or if this is an expensive upgrade. Most unsuspecting buyers think it is part of the process. It’s important to remember almost everything can be negotiated.

4. It will save you more than headaches. Preparation is key to minimizing frustration. With a licensed real estate agent by your side you’ll save time, money, and your sanity.

5. It keeps the builder ethical. I recently had this happen with a new home builder I visited with a client. The builder misrepresented the listing on MLS with a generic inventory home description. I take my client in to see the home with a pool and yes, you guessed it… There was no pool! When I brought this to the agents attention he just shrugged and said, “Well, we have a community pool”. How could you believe anything else this guy has to say.

6. Your questions will be answered. Your realtor can highlight some of your original concerns and questions that you are likely to forget while discussing the details of the home. When you sell real estate full time these things become second nature. Your realtor will be able to answer most questions for you, and will make sure to get the builders answers for specifics. Leaving you with peace of mind.

7. It will educate you on your options. Elevations, curb appeal options, pest control built in options, HVAC options and/or requirements based on your state may not be things you are aware of, but a licensed real estate agent will be able to educate you on any options you have to make the sale of your home worth more.

Remember, there is good and bad in every area. I’ve built connections with some of the best new home builder agents in my area, and I have learned from each sale. Be prepared; you don’t want to be one of those buyers with a horror story to tell about your bad experience with a builder. Just hire a professional and do it right the first time.

Skilled Concrete Contractors Plus the Right Ready Mix Means the Perfect Job

Concrete serves a lot of purposes. Without concrete, cities would basically not exist. Streets, office buildings, and residential homes all require concrete to be built. Of course, someone has to build all those structures. This is where the contractors come into play. In order to do so, the contractors, must purchase the right ready mix concrete is a must. They are also going to need a reliable seller of ready mix concrete. Without high quality concrete, no job is going to get done.

Now, work can be performed with lower quality concrete but this would be a very self-defeating way to go about the process. The problems that arise might be legion. For one, the concrete could take a very long time to dry. As a result, concrete contractors end up being far less productive they otherwise would be. Problems might arise with the person or entity that has requested the project be completed. Time is of the essence to those funding the project. In some cases, a low quality concrete could require more and more ready mix to make the most sufficient concrete and water mix. The wrong mix means problems with time and money may arise.

Worst of all, there could be significant safety problems that emerge. Weak quality concrete ready mix can lead to structural problems. These problems may be obvious immediately or they can take time to develop. The latter might even be deemed the worse of the two since it can set the stage for an unexpected catastrophe at an unforeseen date.

Neither concrete contractors nor their clients wish to experience any calamities, be they major or minor ones. To avoid such occurrences, it is necessary to procure any and all concrete mixes from reputable and reliable providers. Quality concrete mix is well worth the investment.

A well-established supplier of concrete mix can provide the full amount required for any and every job. This includes both the very small ones such as basic sidewalk repair work and major jobs such as the construction of an entire office building. The requested ready mix will be delivered on time and in the needed volume. What the concrete contractors ask for, they will receive.

Skilled and experience concrete contractors know where they can find quality ready mix. Those requiring a project be completed should look for quality in both the concrete mix and the concrete contractors. Doing so ensure the project is done perfectly.

A Couple Of Reasons Why San Diego Might Be Right For You

The city of San Diego California is the second largest city in the state and if you look wider and check where it ranks nationally then you will find that it is the 8th largest in the US. It has over 1.3 million residents and San Diego as a county encompasses 18 cities and dozens of other charming neighborhoods.

Most of the time people will talk about how nice the climate is and how it offers beautiful beaches and a lot of world-class family attractions such as SeaWorld and Legoland just to name a few. It is truly ideal for families of all ages and cultural backgrounds.

Even with all of that said though, I still could name a couple of reasons why San Diego might be right for you.

First off is the school district it offers. It is as good as any and that is one of the most common things to consider when raising a family. I mention this because a lot of homebuyers are starter families. As such, we all would want our children to have the best education possible without compromising too much of our comforts. So where we settle down should be a good combination of a vibrant real estate and a nice school district.

Here are a couple of examples of the great schools in the area:

The Preuss School
National Rank #30
College Readiness Index 93.9
Academic Performance Index 899

One of the great things about this school is its involvement in preparing low-income students for college. They have been known to have a high number of students that are the first in their families to proceed to college.

La Jolla High School
National Rank #214
College Readiness Index 59.4
Academic Performance Index 849

Here is another school that could help in advanced placement opportunities. They have over a 74 percent participation rate in AP activities which a lot of parents welcome so that their children could get all the help they can.

Next off is that home appreciation has steadily improved in the last 10 years. Compared to the rest of the country, San Diego has experienced a much more stable yearly improvement of home prices. The numbers are at a 39.78% increase in the last decade which makes it about 3% a year and it is in the top 20% in the national ranking for home appreciation rates. So in terms of long-term investment then this city has one of the best track records you could find. Although results and percentages may differ from specific neighborhoods, it still is doing pretty well as a whole.

For more info please visit http://www.mikesremax.com for free MLS search and information about the buying process and The steps needed or Call me @858.609.9609 for a free no risk no obligation Consultation about your Real estate needs.

Down to the Nitty-Gritty in Relationships When Building a Home

Unfortunately, building a house can be stressful, unpredictable and overwhelming. It takes a lot of time, commitment and money to build. There are so many unexpected things that can happen; even with the best thought-out plans. In addition, often times the building of a home from the ground up consumes lots of money. With all of that said, home construction can demolish a relationship if you’re not careful!

General Contractors and home builders intimately know the demands of home construction. They are inundated with this reality on a daily basis. Likewise, most couples are familiar with the day-to-day ups and downs in their relationship. We also recognize relationship strengths and weakness’ will stand out during this building project. To be proactive and protect your relationship, it is wise to be on alert for the things that can tear down your relationship and destroy the joy of your project.

Most relationships deal with what John and Julie Gottman of The Gottman Institute, call the Four Horseman of the Apocalypse. Through their 35 plus years of research, they identified that the four horsemen of criticism, defensiveness, contempt and stonewalling lead to the destruction of a relationship.

At some point, these four horsemen run over and through most marriages and kick up chaos. They are more likely to stampede through your relationship during stressful times such as building a home. Our desire is to help you corral these horsemen so they won’t scatter you and your partner.

Tom and Julie are great examples of how easily this can happen! To give you a little background information, they have been married for 9 years, have 1 child, one on the way, both have full-time employment and are building their first home.

The overall planning and designing phase went smoothly; working with one another to create their long awaited home. Once they actually got to nitty-gritty decision-making, criticism was abound. They had significant construction deadlines pressuring them along with the daily demands of work and home life. They were stressed-out to the max and something was about to blow!

One night when the stress was at its worse, harsh fault-finding and demeaning words were thrown at one another. Tom was angry that Julie for the third time, didn’t place the kitchen cabinet order she said she was going to. His words, “You never follow through with what you say you’re going to do. You’re so unreliable”. Julie hurled, “You’re such a jerk, you don’t get how overwhelmed I am with working, taking care of Mike (their son) and trying to stay caught up with house stuff!”

Sound familiar? For some, this is a “normal” conversation with their spouse. For others, stress causes this type of interaction. Either way, criticism is not helpful. It is the first of four horsemen that can eat away at the foundation of your relationship. If couples get stuck here it can lead to the additional horsemen listed above.

Criticism tears away at the character of the person. Complaints address the behavior. Sooner or later we all get into some kind of conflict as it is difficult to avoid conflict altogether. The key is to manage the conflict you find yourself in.

Round Up and Corral: The solution… complain without blame. Here’s the difference between criticism and complaint without blame.

Criticism-Tom said, “You never… And you’re unreliable”

Julie said, You’re a jerk… you never understand”

Both of these responses are attacking the person, tearing away at who they are. Not helpful, easy to do, but not going to help resolve the problem.

Complaint- Tom says, “I feel disappointed because you didn’t follow through with what you said you were going to do. I am concerned we aren’t going to get our kitchen cabinets when we need them if we don’t get them ordered on time”.

Julie says, “I hear your frustration. I am stressed out and have too many things on my plate. I’m sorry I didn’t follow through. Let’s sit down after Mike goes to bed and make a plan we are both happy with”.

As you can hear in the complaint without blame statements, their interaction and response to one another is less negative. They shared their own feelings, concerns and needs. Here is a simple outline to help you next time criticism rears its ugly head in your relationship.

1. Share your feelings- “I feel… “

2. Express a positive need- “I would like to sit down after Mike goes to bed and make a plan I can keep”.

Conflict cannot be avoided; criticism can. Be on the lookout for the first horsemen of criticism so when he stampedes into your relationship, you’ll be prepared to rope and corral him. Don’t let criticism destroy your relationship and home building project! After all, I bet you want to enjoy one another while you build that home of your dreams.

Financing Your New Home

Purchasing a home is the biggest financial investment most people will ever make so it is vital to explore and understand all of the finance options available before settling on repayment terms.

Home loans, grants, deposits, and fees all have an impact on the final price paid, and all need to be considered before settling on your finance.

Options In Home Financing

The most common way to finance a new home is to obtain a loan from a bank or mortgage lender. There are many different types of mortgages out there and they are not created equal. It is worthwhile to shop around to find the best terms for your situation. Whatever you end up choosing will have an impact on your household budget, so make sure the terms are fair, understandable, and you can repay the loan.

Types of mortgages include:

Fixed. Allows a fixed rate for up to 10 years, then reverts to the lenders’ standard variable rate or can be rolled over into another fixed term.

Basic Variable. Lower interest rate than a standard variable loan. Rate varies with the Reserve Bank changes.

Standard Variable. Most popular. Higher interest rate than a basic variable. Interest rates can move up or down with the Reserve Bank. Very flexible.

Introductory. Also called a Honeymoon Loan. Low interest rate for the 1st year may be fixed, variable, or capped. After honeymoon period expires, it reverts to the lender’s standard variable rate, which is usually higher than the introductory.

Low Deposit. Aimed at homebuyers with little savings to put towards the deposit.

Low Doc. Good for homebuyers who are self-employed and can’t provide typical proof of income normally required. Must have good credit.

Construction Loans. Used to finance a house and the land that it will be built upon. Payments are made directly to the builder during the phases of construction.

All In One Loans. A transaction account and loan combined into one, where you can credit your salary directly to the account and withdraw your funds via ATM’s, EFTPOS, credit card, or chequebook, as needed. This allows the borrower to decrease interest expenses by keeping funds in the account for as long as possible.

Line Of Credit. Similar to an All in One. Can draw down the loan any time up. No set term.

Bridging Loans. Used by current homeowners who want to sell their property and purchase a new one. Bridge financing lets the borrower obtain funds to ‘bridge’ the gap between paying for the new property before the old one sells.

Grants And Other Forms Of Assistance

Grants and exemptions from fees can all help make buying property more affordable. The most common grant is the First Home Owners Grant. This government-funded grant scheme helps first time buyers by providing up to $10,000 in grant money towards the purchase of a new home. These grants are one-time use and do not need to be repaid.

The Home Buyers Assistance Account provides a grant of up to $2,000 to first buyers when they purchase an established or partially built dwelling unit. The money can be used towards the additional expenses of purchasing such as fees and insurance premiums.

Stamp Duty Concessions reduce the amount of money owed for stamp duty on vacant plots of land, up to $300,000. This can save a buyer $9,000.

Deposit Requirements

The deposit is money put towards the purchase upfront. You must have some sort of deposit in order to obtain a mortgage. The smallest amount that most lenders will accept is 5% of the purchase price. Ideally, you want to provide 20% if you want to avoid lenders mortgage insurance. This money is then subtracted from the final purchase price of the home. The amount of the deposit impacts the mortgage terms, including the amount mortgaged and the interest rate for which you qualify. The more money you can provide upfront, the better your mortgage terms are likely to be.

The best way to find the right home loan and figure out what grants or other government assistance you qualify for is to talk to the lending professional. An experienced lender will be able to tell you how much you can afford, what kind of deposit is needed, and which loans are an option for you.

Buying a Home From Family and Friends

Sure you love them. Maybe you have known them your whole life. However when buying a home you still have to do it by the book. A home is your biggest financial investment you will probably make in your whole life. You want to make a sound investment. You want to protect your family. So just because you are buying a home from family or a friend does not mean you should not follow the right buying steps.

1.) Always get a home inspection – this is a major. You need to be aware of the issues. If you know about them and do not want to act on them because they are family or friends then that is your problems. You just do not want to be screwed and inherit a money pit from a family member who “was giving you a great deal”. I had a young lady who bought this home from her brother. She didn’t have a home inspection done. She didn’t know better, but the basement walls were buckling. It was a major structural issue. Her brother sold her the house at fair market value. Because of the basement issues the house would sell way below market value. Her brother took her for a ride.

2.) Always go through a title company. Yes you may have enough cash and they will just do a quick claim deed to you. DO NOT DO IT. What happens if your dear sister has a tax lien against the house from not paying Uncle Sam. What happens if your best friend was notorious for not paying contractors. There may be $20,000 worth of construction liens against the house. You bought it without a title company, you now own a house that can’t be sold without paying those liens off. It is a dumb move to buy a home without a title company involved. A title company will only transfer title to a new buyer if the title is clean. So use a title company.

So follow the normal buying steps. Sure your brother, cousin or aunt may be a very nice person but the sale of a home is too big to just trust somebody. There should be no problem having a home inspection done or using a title company if there are no hidden issues. If they are trying to talk you out of doing either of these two things that is a major red flag. It’s not that you don’t trust them. It’s too protect your family and your money.