Date Archives: October 2011

Coldwell Banker American Homes Blog Home

Subscribe and receive email notifications of new blog posts.




rss logo RSS Feed
Area Information | 27 Posts
BPT | 10 Posts
Buying | 6 Posts
Homeowners | 17 Posts
Real Estate Blogs | 319 Posts
RREIN | 62 Posts
Uncategorized | 148 Posts
Buying a Home | Home Purchase Guidelines | Long Island Homes and Property | Real Estate for Long Island | Energy Efficient Homes | Homeowner Tax Credits | Tax Credits for Home Energy Efficiency | Adjustable Rate Mortgages | Mortgages for the Long Island real estate market | The Right Mortgage for the Right Home Buyer | Real Estate Question of the Day! | Real Estate - scams and mortgages | What you need to know about real estate | Home Purchase Savings | Interest rates offer greatest leverage | Tax credit vs mortgage interest rates | Assisted Living | VA Special Pension | home loans | Home mortgage rates | Another Interest Rate Drop | Mortgage Interest Rates | Defending homeownership | Is now the time to buy a home? | Real Estate - still a great investment | Long Island condo & co-op | Long Island Homes for sale | Long Island Properties | Negotiating house purchase price | New construction on Long Island | Real Estate transfer fees | buy your home through a short sale purchase | selling short with the banks approval | Short sale home purchase | $2000 home buyer grant | New York State home buying grants | home list price vs. home sales price | negotiate a new home sales price | New York State STAR tax exemption | STAR tax exemption for New York homeowners | Buyer Brokerage | Real Estate Representation | Seller Agency | Tips for improving your credit score | Home and property appraisals | Homeowner Tax Advantages | Home Purchase Track | Owning a home vs. Renting | 55+ Adult Community | Senior housing | The Season's at East Meadow | co-op | Condo's | Homes | land for sale | Why Now is a Great Time to Buy a Home on Long Island | Homeownership | Open House weekend | home buying process | mortgage prequalification | Real Estate Investment Tips | Tips to Flip your real estate | Home Shopping Checklist | Look for a house with a checklist | ips to purchasing a short sale home | Short sales: How to purchase | Cut energy costs for your home | home energy efficiency | Loan application mistakes | mortgage loans | mortgage home loans | What home loan is right for you? | house hunting | Hunting for a home | Common Home Defects | What to look for when buying a home | first time home buyers | The 1st time home buyers guide | mobile based home search | Mobile phone users - coupons | smart phone applications | Housing Market Recovery Bright Spots | Natianal Housing Market Report | Home Closing - contract to closing | Home purchase timeline | 203k home mortgage program | Home Improvement Funding | Myths of the real estate market | The Home Buying Process | narrow down your home search | The Best location for your home purchase | buying a home? protect your credit! | credit protection | Home value pitfalls | home closing steps to take | New home closing | Home Styles | Popular Homes | best interest rates | credit scores | Create Energy within Your Home with Feng Shui | Feng Shui within your home | consumer confidence | home buyers more confident in housing market | Real Estate market impact | Rent verse Buy | Renters Outspend Owners on Housing | Benefits of home buying | Winter shopping for homes | Consumers confidence in home ownership | Homeownership attitudes | Real estate tax advantages & tips | Tax tips for homeowners | job opportunity | real estate agent | real estate career | rental agent | 1st time home buyer tips | priorities for home buyers | make moving fun for family | Moving for the family | Buy a foreclosure | REO purchase tips | Tips to buying a foreclosure property | Use a real estate agent to buy a home | Use a real estate agent to sell a home | Why use a real estate agent | Home Buying steps | Home Buying tips | Stepr to take prior to buying a home | home loan good faith estimate | Tips to your home loan mortgage | FICO Scores | How FICO scores are calculated | Your FICO score | Invest in a home | tax refund - invest it in your home purchase | VA Loan | The Home Buyers Wish List | Home buying expectations | real estate market report | Bidding on real estate properties | purchase offers for your home | home mortgage | downsizing your home | moving to a smaller house | Jumbo Loans for Home Purchase | Mortgage Money Lesson | newlywed home purchasing tips | The perfect wedding gift... a new home | Avoid these home buying mistakes | common mistakes when buying a home | Good News for Housing | Home Price Index | Bank fees for the homeowner | understanding banks and their fees | Home Inspections for your new home purchase | What to know about home inspections | Fire safety for your home | Is your home fire safe? | Home Mortgage programs | LTV | Mortgage loan to value | Mortgage relief for disaster challenged areas | Location | Property location - real estate | buying a short sale property | short sale tips | buying a home - best investment? | When is the best time to buy? | New Years resolutions | Resolutions: a Reality for Realty's | Get a mortgage after foreclosure | mortgage financing - after foreclosure | Is it a good time to buy a home? | What age is old enough to buy a home? | Buy a short sale property | Short Sale real estate properties | Home property tax deductions | real estate tax deductions | Real Estate License School | Apartment Rentals | House Rentals | Real Estate Rental Agent | House Hunting Tips | Simple house hunting tips & ideas | Mortgage advice - current trends | mortgaging & refinancing in 2013 | Good credit score = best equal rates | How to build up your credit score | lease - option to buy | Rent with option to buy | Avoid Home Improvement Blunders | Home improvements ideas for the property owner | Home Buyers - What do you really want? | Needs & wants of home buyers | mortgage loans for new home construction | New construction home loans | Home Buyers - Price & proximity to work | Key Concerns for the home buyer | Impressive mortgage applications | Keys to getting your mortgage approved | Home buying mistakes to avoid | Home purchasing blunders to avoid | New homes vs older homes | to buy or not to buy a home | pet friendly rentals | Pets or no pets - apartment rentals | tips for home purchasers | Flipping houses | home flpipping 101 | spec houses | home buyer how to's | how to be a better home buyer | Mortgage amortization | A happy home | What makes you really happy? | Low housing inventory | Low inventory housing market | Home prices on the rise | Rising property values | Home buyer tips to open houses | Open House etiquette | Winning a home purchase bidding war | Home mortgage rate tips | mortgage tips for the new home owner | Home Equity Line versus 2nd Mortgage | buy a new home or expand your current home | Home improvements vs. new home purchse | Mortgage Rate Lock | Residential home mortgage rates | Improve your economic profile for home mortgage | Personal Finance | Costly problems for new home buyers | New home buyers avoid costly problems | Handy man special | The home fixer-upper | How to refinance | Refinance - without perfect credit | Debt to Income | Tackling Debt | Seasonal real estate trends | The fall season housing market | Factor in home repairs in your mortgage payment | Home repairs for new home purchasers | Home sellers negotiation techniques | negotiations for home buyers & sellers | The home buying process - stress free | The process of buying a home | Recently Read | Saved for Later | Great Neck | Massapequa | Huntington | Ronkonkoma | Brooklyn | East Meadow | Coldwell Banker American Homes | Local Attractions | Home Improvement | Interior Design | Queens | Fresh Meadows | Long Beach | Local Businesses | Farmingdale | Home selling | Suffolk County | Nassau County | Wantagh
October
27

For any buyer in the market for a new home, it's a critical time period for your credit to be in great shape. While filling out applications, your personal data and credit score will be as important as ever. Protecting your credit now before you buy will help set you up to take advantage of the best mortgage rates possible so you can secure the home of your choice as soon as possible. Here are a few tips for protecting your credit: Apply with care: Be mindful when applying to multiple lenders. To some versions of the FICO software, all applications submitted within 30-45 days of each other only count as one hit on your credit report. However, this isn't always true. Many lenders may still use older versions of the software. Play it safe by submitting all applications in a 14-day period. This will ensure that your credit report doesn't show multiple hits, which will in turn better your overall score. Pack up to prepare: When selling a home, pack up some of your belongings to prepare for strangers walking throughout the home. Any bills or financial papers should be put into a locked box or drawer. Protecting your finances and account numbers should be your number-one priority. You won't always know who is walking through your home and identity and credit theft are unfortunately extremely common. Protect your documents: When buying a new home, only potential mortgage lenders need to see all of your personal information. Agents and sellers only need to know how much you can afford. When dealing with a lender, stick to the same representative to minimize the number of people who have access to your documents. Avoid sending any files with your social security number through email. Opt for mail or fax. Stay on top of your finances: Even if you are on top of bills on a monthly basis, you may want to consider checking into your accounts weekly. By logging into your credit card accounts regularly, you can make sure that all of the charges are legitimately yours. Credit watch services are also a good idea. If a fraudulent charge is made, the service will pick up on it and alert you of the charges. It's important to act quickly with regards to your credit. You can never be too careful. By keeping a close eye on all of your finances, you can be sure to protect your credit so that there won't be any problems when you need to apply for a loan. Source: Bankrate
October
27

October
13

There are several factors that may influence your decision on where to live. See below for some important considerations when selecting the best area for your home search.

1.   Education - Homebuyers who have children will often look for a desirable school district. From private, charter, and magnet to public school, there are an array of options. Visit local area schools and check with your CENTURY 21 agent to verify where district boundaries are drawn. If you prefer private schools, make sure transportation is available within your search area.

2.   Staying power - Lasting home values are a concern for every homebuyer. Pay attention to the data on the local economy. The local rate of long-term employment, industry and neighborhood may affect your home's appreciation value in the years to come. Your agent can also provide you with information on home values in the local area.

3.   Safety - Check with the local police department for crime statistics. A neighborhood with high crime, high foreclosure rates, and vandalism are warning signs to prospective buyers.

4.   Proximity to work - An easy way to narrow down your search area is to limit the proximity to your work. Decide if you need public transportation or easy access to highways, and take into consideration the distance to your work if you commute.

5.   Location, location, location - Are parks, playgrounds, and restaurants within walking distance important to you? Perhaps you want more of a rural area. Understand what your desirable area entails to find your ideal location.

?
October
13

Whether you are a first-time buyer or a seasoned veteran who has been out of the game for awhile, buyers should always be aware of and note certain home buying myths that abound. It's easy to get caught up in the excitement of buying new property, but by being educated and realistic, buyers can avoid a few common-yet-untrue beliefs as they venture toward closing a deal. The Myth of "The Perfect Home" Along with all that excitement comes the dreams of your ideal home. If the vision you've set for yourself is too close to perfection, you may not find what you're looking for. Every house is bound to have something wrong with it. If a home is nearly perfect, don't nitpick over smaller needs and priorities. Lock it down before it gets snagged. The Myth of "The Speaking House" It's human nature to get a certain "feel" to a house when first walking through it. As they always say, first impressions go a long way and the same rings true with real estate. Buyers, however, should try to fight initial gut feelings. More than likely the home was staged for buyers to feel an emotional tie to the décor. Look past the paint and décor to figure out if a home is right for you. The Myth of "The Old Furnace" An old furnace can sometimes be difficult to maintain or replace, but don't let it be a deal breaker for an otherwise suitable home. The same goes for other issues such as a roof in need of repair, old wiring, etc. If everything else is in order without needed repairs, the home in question can still be a great choice for your investment. The Myth of "The House to Grow In" First-time buyers always get the advice that they should buy up so that they can grow into a house - for instance, should a couple be planning for children. Look at your current needs, not what you'd like to have down the road. If you end up needing more space for a larger family down the line, you can always sell and move up later. The Myth of "The Negotiation Winner" Don't feel like you have to win the negotiation. The winner is not the person to have the last word, but rather, everyone when the deal is truly a fair one. Don't sweat the small stuff, and remember that it is a business transaction - leave those emotions and egos at the door. The Myth of "The Best Deal" Don't fall into the frame of mind that thinks foreclosures are always the best deals. Though they can sometimes save in large amounts, oftentimes there's a lot of work and repair to be done. Foreclosed homes are occasionally not left in the best condition. Sometimes the easiest transaction is buying from a seller and negotiating until an agreement can be reached. When buying a home, it's important to separate hearsay from your actual needs, wants and beliefs. Try to view every property with a clear mind and minimal expectations. Avoid these real estate myths to reach your own conclusion based on your needs, and most importantly, never say never. Source: FrontDoor.com
October
6

If you are interested in remodeling or upgrading essential features on your home, be sure to check if your project is eligible for government funding before you jump in. According to Michael Litzner, Broker of Century 21 American Homes, there are several different home improvement programs funded by the federal government. "If you are making a basic livability repair or improvement to your home-say a necessary addition or a new roof-you may be able to apply for a Title 1 Home Improvement Loan," says Litzner. Private lenders often fund these loans, and HUD insures these loans for up to $25,000 for a singly-family home. However, if you need help refinancing major repairs or rehabilitations to your home, look into a Section 203(K) program. "This is HUD's primary rehabilitation program, and is especially useful for those purchasing 'as is' properties that need a lot of work," says Litzner. If you or someone in your family is a veteran, you may be able to apply for a loan from the Department of Veterans Affairs. "These loans allow veterans to refinance an existing loan at a lower interest rate, or acquire a new loan to buy or improve an existing home," explains Litzner. "If you live in a rural area and need to modernize your home, or remove a health or safety hazard, you may be able to apply for a Rural Housing Repair and Rehabilitation Loan, funded by the Agriculture Department," suggests Litzner. These loans are extremely low-rate, and available to low-income rural residents. "If your home has been damaged due to a natural disaster, fire or flooding, another financing option you want to consider is a loan from the Small Business Administration, which offers assistance to individuals as well as businesses," explains Litzner. These loans cover both uninsured and underinsured losses, and are issued after a disaster declaration is signed by the President or SBA administrator. "Applicants need to register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and can be eligible for loans up to $200,000 for replacement of a primary residence," says Litzner. Before you begin funding a major home improvement or repair on your own, make sure to look into all of your options to see if you are eligible to receive government funding for a necessary project. For more information on home improvement loans, please contact Century 21 American Homes at MLitzner@C21AmHomes.com, 1-800-270-6318, or Century 21 American Homes. Century 21 American Homes is one of the fastest growing real estate brokerages serving Long Island, Queens and Brooklyn. To find out more about an exciting career in real estate contact us at careers@c21amhomes.com.
October
6

October
6

Sharing their location with retailers in order to receive discounts may be worth the privacy risk for the majority of mobile consumers. Sixty-seven percent somewhat/strongly agree that location-based coupons are very convenient and useful according to a recent mobile survey among smartphone and tablet users conducted by Prosper Mobile Insights™. Respondents answered questions directly on their mobile devices. Further, one in four (25.6%) mobile users say they would prefer to receive coupons on a smartphone or tablet automatically when they are near a store. However, double that number (51.1%) would prefer to receive coupons on their device via email. Manually searching for coupons, scanning QR codes and receiving promotional texts/IMs also rank higher than automatic location-based coupons. Receiving discounts on the spot, though, appears more popular than "checking in" through social media (only 10.3% would prefer this method): Coupon Preferences on Smartphones/Tablets Receive via email: 51.1% Manually search for them: 32.2% Scan a QR code when inside a store: 31.9% Receive via text or instant message: 31.0% Receive automatically when near a store: 25.6% Check-in through social media: 10.3% Don't want to receive coupons at all on device: 18.1% While 81.9% are open to receiving coupons on their smartphone or tablet in one form or another, location-based coupons do raise privacy concerns-44.8% are somewhat/very concerned about their location being tracked or other security issues. 29.6% are neutral while 25.6% are not concerned. The majority of Mobile Users engage in shopping behaviors on their smartphones or tablets. Most conduct research: 76.4% browse or look for a product or service; 73.0% use their device to locate a store or store hours; 48.9% research specific products; and 45.7% read customer reviews on their smartphone or tablet. Interestingly, 42.2% have used their smartphone or tablet as a coupon (scanning a bar code, showing a text to a cashier, etc.) Nearly two in five (39.7%) have also made a purchase directly on a mobile device and 36.2% have scanned a QR code. For more information, visit: www.prospermobile.com.

Login to My Homefinder

Login to My Homefinder