Thinking about Moving

3 Benefits to Hiring a Professional Mover


benefits of working with a moverThe more stories I hear about friends and family moving themselves, the more benefits I think about regarding working with a professional. Don’t get me wrong, there are pros and cons to both sides. But when it comes to stress level, convenience, and safety, there’s no question about it; a professional is the way to go.

Home Finding Tip: Don’t Skip Exterior Inspections



With the busy moving season upon us, many of you will be searching for your new home, if you haven’t already found it. House hunting is both fun and stressful and while I definitely want you to enjoy your experience, I don’t want you Don't Skip Exterior Inspectionsto fall into any traps. As I continue my own search for a new home, I have found that it’s easy to get tunnel vision when you find something you love. Luckily, I have learned a lot in this industry and I have a wonderful Realtor on my side so I’ve caught myself before making any major mistakes. We’re told not to judge a book by its cover, and the same goes for homes and their curb appeal … to some extent. While some exterior issues can be easily fixed, others lead to a whole slew of problems that you don’t want to deal with.  

Foreclosure vs. Short Sale



Buying a home is no easy task. It takes a lot of work to find a home that suits your needs and preferences let alone foreclosure versus short saleyour budget. Going with a foreclosure or short sale property can be a great way to save money on a wonderful home, but it’s important to know the difference between the
two aswell as the challenges you may be faced with.

The difference:

A property is in foreclosure when the owner fails to make mortgage payments over a period of time and the lender takes ownership of the home. A home in foreclosure may be sold at an auction or sold by a Realtor. When dealing with a foreclosure, the bank is the seller, not the homeowner.


Don’t let the term “short-sale” throw you, the process can be much longer than a typical home sale. A short sale property is still owned by the homeowner, the borrower. Typically, the homeowner will make arrangements with the bank, the lender, to accept a price that is less than what is still owed on the property. In a short sale, the lender usually agrees to forgive the rest of the loan. The key here is to remember that the buyer, the seller, and all of the lenders involved need to agree on the sale price before a sale is finalized. Keep in mind that if there are multiple mortgages out, then all lenders are lien holders.


Things to consider:


Before making any decisions, learn the ins and outs of each process. You can find a ton of information online about foreclosures and short sales. It’s also a good idea to ask questions. Talk to Realtors, talk to friends who have gone through one or the other, seek out seminars, etc.


Do not attempt to handle this on your own. Invest in the help from a professional. Laws regarding these types of things vary from state to state so an experienced agent with established relationships with lenders will be a tremendous help.


Next, be very aware of what you may be dealing with in the future. For example, homes in foreclosure sold at an auction are often sold “as is” meaning that you may not even get the chance to enter the home before you are the new legal owner. There are no inspections or walk throughs and potential liens on the title.


Be patient. While purchasing a foreclosure or short sale property can save you money, the process is usually longer and more complicated than it would be otherwise. You’ll need to deal with waiting periods for a foreclosure and waiting for an agreement on price from all parties involved with a short sale.


Lastly, don’t forget the additional expenses you may encounter. While the base price will seem like a steal, you’ll have to remove any liens, pay any unpaid taxes, and of course pay for repairs that could have been covered by the previous owner if you were offered the chance of an inspection. By the time all of those costs are added, the deal may not seem as sweet.


Do not get me wrong, I am not saying that purchasing a foreclosure or short sale property is a mistake in any way. I just want you to be aware of all of the aspects and possible obstacles involved. Buying a home is a long term investment. It’s important to know exactly what you are doing and what is expected of you before you go through with anything.

Four Tips to Save for a Down Payment



Lately, it seems like all of my friends are either getting married, having children, or buying homes. A lot of my friends Tips to Save for a Down Payment on a New Homedown here in Florida work in Real Estate, and according to them, Millennials, at least in the Tampa Bay area, are leaning towards buying a home rather than renting one. With affordable mortgage rates, tons of inventory, and rent rates continuing to creep up, home buying here really is the best option. That is, of course, if you have enough for a down payment.

A Lesson in Property Auctions



A while ago I mentioned that Matt and I are saving up to buy our first house. As we aim to reach that goal this upcoming fall, I have been spending a lot of time researching the housing market in Saint Petersburg, FL, scoping out different neighborhoods, and making lists of non-negotiables, budgets, and details that we should keep in mind Home-Auctionwhen the time comes to make an offer. Over the weekend, during one of my online fantasy house hunts, I found the most perfect home. The house is a bungalow style home in our first choice neighborhood with three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a large fenced in backyard, and a small but sweet front covered deck. I was about to call my Realtor when I noticed that instead of a listed price, the home was up for auction.

Moving Dreams



I just spent an amazing long weekend in San Jose, California. My friend was relocated there for work a few months ago and has been raving about it ever since. She told me all about her experience living on the west coast and even Moving Dreamsadmitted that she doesn’t think she ever wants to leave. Of course, this led to a discussion about our favorite US cities. I absolutely love Saint Petersburg in Florida but it’s still fun to think, where would we move to if we could just pick up and go?

Benefits of Moving and Buying a Home in December


It is hard to believe that today is already December first. I feel like we just rang in 2015 and in a few short weeks it Benefits of moving in Decemberwill be over! I know most of our minds are filled with gift ideas, decorating plans, and hosting arrangements, but for many, thoughts are centered around open houses, closing costs, and moving. Contrary to popular belief, the holiday season is still pretty busy in the housing market. In fact, homeowners searching to buy a new home can usually find great deals in December.

When Should a Renter Become a Homeowner?



These days, renting is no longer necessarily the cheaper option. In fact, renters today pay the highest monthly charges in history and so far there is no sign of the cost going down. As rents continue to rise, more and more people are beginning to think about buying a home in an effort to save money. But with overpriced rental charges on top of day to day expenses, many renters find themselves strapped for cash when it comes time to think about a down

When should renters become homeowners?

Source: Savvy Sugar

payment. Did you know that non-homeowners spend an average of 30 percent of their monthly income on rent? Did you know that the average homeowner only spends about 15 percent of their monthly income on their mortgages? That’s a pretty crazy statistic. It’s no wonder more people want to own. But the issue isn’t whether or not people want to buy, it’s whether or not they can afford to do so. Buying a home is one of life’s greatest financial decisions so it’s important to be sure about the decision from all aspects, including the cost.

The Difference Between a Short Sale and a Foreclosure


I’ve been talking a lot about how Matt and I are saving to buy our first home (yay!) We are learning now more than ever that it takes a lot of work to find a home that suits your needs and preferences let alone your budget. Though we foreclosure versus short saleare still far from our goal, I like to browse local listings just to get a feel for what we can get within our goal budget. There are a ton of short sale listings as well as homes in foreclosure in our area. Going with a foreclosure or short sale property can be a great way to save money on a wonderful home, but it’s important to know the difference between the two as well as the challenges you may be faced with.

How and Why to Create a Home Inventory



How to Build a Home InventoryDo you have a working list of all of your belongings? Before I started working with Holman in 2012, that question was laughable to me because of course I didn’t. Why would I? It never occurred to me to keep track of all of my things in lists so that I would be better prepared for a move. But, now, the concept is clear to me. Building a home inventory is one of my tips for how to be organized when taking account of your household items whether you are moving soon or not.