Cynthia Quade

Ready to Refinish Your Cabinets? You Have Options!

Kitchen Cabinets

It’s been a long year, and it’s ok if you’re tired of staring at those kitchen cabinets you’ve frankly hated for years. 2021 is a year about promise and change, and you can start the process in your very own home. There are lots of ways to give your cabinets a new look, whether you prefer something more classic or super contemporary. There’s an option for every budget, and most of the time you won’t even need to replace your cabinets or counters, unless you just really want to.


Remake Those Cabinets to Create Your Dream Kitchen
When it comes to giving your cabinets new life, you have options. Some are pretty simple and don’t require a lot of effort; some are quite challenging and may generate a great deal of mess and confusion. They’re all valid options, though, depending on just how much time you’re willing to put into the project.

You’ll have the most flexibility if you’re working with wooden cabinets, whether or not they’ve been painted previously. Laminated cabinets (also sometimes called MDF) are a bit of a different beast, and are very difficult to change once they’ve been installed. Here are a few things you should consider, depending on your cabinets:

  • Swapping Hardware. Sometimes, the thing making your cabinets feel old and dated is the hardware. It might sound like a small thing, but heavy cabinet hardware from the 1970s has a whole different feel than more streamlined contemporary hardware. If you’re on a small budget, or you can’t have your kitchen torn apart for an extended period, investing in new hardware could give you a whole new look.
  • Repainting. This is generally only a trick to try on cabinets that are made of wood, but if you use specially designed paints and primers, you can often make paint stick to laminated or metal cabinets. Choose a paint that’s self-leveling and dries hard, like a latex-based enamel cabinet paint, along with a bonding primer, for the very best results.
    • You’ll need to take the doors down, sand the existing finish just enough to rough it up, and allow for plenty of dry time, but because these paints are tintable, the sky is really the limit. It goes on just like other high grade paint, so mix and match colors, paint two-tone designs on your existing cabinetry, or freehand it with fancy designs for a look you really love.
  • Restaining. This will only work with wood cabinets, but you can really change the look of a room simply by restaining your existing cabinets. It’s possible to strip old paint off of painted cabinets, but be warned: it will be a lot of work and mess, so do it outside as much as you can.
    • Once you have all the old stain or paint sanded off, apply your new stain per package directions. Today’s stains come in a lot more than traditional “wood” colors; many can create simulated whitewash or aged wood, or add a thin tint of color that will still allow the wood grain to show through.

If redoing your cabinet doors seems like it may be more mess than you’re prepared to deal with, or you want to change the actual design of your cabinet doors, another viable option would be to order all new cabinet doors. You may still need to paint or stain the cabinet bases to match, but a whole new design is a lot easier to achieve with new doors, and replacing those doors is a lot simpler than replacing all your cabinets.

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    The #1 Thing You Can Do Now to Position Yourself to Buy a Home This Year

    The #1 Thing You Can Do Now to Position Yourself to Buy a Home This Year | MyKCM

    The last few weeks and months have caused a major health crisis throughout the world, leading to a pause in the U.S. economy as businesses and consumers work to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The rapid spread of the virus has been compared to prior pandemics and outbreaks not seen in many years. It also has consumers remembering the economic slowdown of 2008 that was caused by a housing crash. This economic slowdown, however, is very different from 2008.

    One thing the experts are saying is that while we’ll see a swift decline in economic activity in the second quarter, we’ll begin a sharp rebound in the second half of this year. According to John Burns Consulting:

    “Historical analysis showed us that pandemics are usually V-shaped (sharp recessions that recover quickly enough to provide little damage to home prices), and some very cutting-edge search engine analysis by our Information Management team showed the current slowdown is playing out similarly thus far.” 

    Given this situation, if you’re thinking about buying a home this year, the best thing you can do right now is use this time to get pre-approved for a mortgage, which you can do from the comfort of your home. Pre-approval will help you better understand how much you can afford so that you can confidently do the following two things when you’re ready to buy:

    1. Gain a Competitive Advantage

    Today’s low inventory, like we’ve seen recently and will continue to see, means homebuyers need every advantage they can get to make a strong offer and close the deal. Being pre-approved shows the sellers you’re serious about buying a home, which is always a plus in your corner.

    2. Accelerate the Homebuying Process

    Pre-approval can also speed-up the homebuying process so you can move faster when you’re ready to make an offer. Being ready to put your best foot forward when the time comes may be the leg-up you need to cross the finish line first and land the home of your dreams.

    Bottom Line

    Pre-approval is the best thing you can do right now to be in a stronger position to buy a home when you’re ready. Let’s connect today to get the process started.

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      The Best Advice Does Not Mean Perfect Advice

      The Best Advice Does Not Mean Perfect Advice | MyKCM

      The angst caused by the coronavirus has most people on edge regarding both their health and financial situations. It’s at times like these when we want exact information about anything we’re doing – even the correct protocol for grocery shopping. That information brings knowledge, and this gives us a sense of relief and comfort.

      If you’re thinking about buying or selling a home today, the same need for information is very real. But, because it’s such a big step in our lives, that desire for clear information is even greater in the homebuying or selling process. Given the current level of overall anxiety, we want that advice to be truly perfect. The challenge is, no one can give you “perfect” advice. Experts can, however, give you the best advice possible.

      Let’s say you need an attorney, so you seek out an expert in the type of law required for your case. When you go to her office, she won’t immediately tell you how the case is going to end or how the judge or jury will rule. If she could, that would be perfect advice. What a good attorney can do, however, is discuss with you the most effective strategies you can take. She may recommend one or two approaches she believes will be best for your case.

      She’ll then leave you to make the decision on which option you want to pursue. Once you decide, she can help you put a plan together based on the facts at hand. She’ll help you achieve the best possible resolution and make whatever modifications in the strategy are necessary to guarantee that outcome. That’s an example of the best advice possible.

      The role of a real estate professional is just like the role of the lawyer. An agent can’t give you perfect advice because it’s impossible to know exactly what’s going to happen throughout the transaction – especially in this market.

      An agent can, however, give you the best advice possible based on the information and situation at hand, guiding you through the process to help you make the necessary adjustments and best decisions along the way. An agent will get you the best offer available. That’s exactly what you want and deserve.

      Bottom Line

      If you’re thinking of buying or selling, our agents are ready to help make sure you get the best advice possible.

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        Three Reasons Why Pre-Approval Is the First Step in the 2020 Homebuying Journey

        Three Reasons Why Pre-Approval Is the First Step in the 2020 Homebuying Journey | MyKCM

        When the number of buyers in the housing market outnumbers the number of homes for sale, it’s called a “seller’s market.” The advantage tips toward the seller as low inventory heats up the competition among those searching for a place to call their own. This can create multiple offer scenarios and bidding wars, making it tough for buyers to land their dream homes – unless they stand out from the crowd. Here are three reasons why pre-approval should be your first step in the homebuying process.

        1. Gain a Competitive Advantage

        Low inventory, like we have today, means homebuyers need every advantage they can get to make a strong impression and close the deal. One of the best ways to get one step ahead of other buyers is to get pre-approved for a mortgage before you make an offer. For one, it shows the sellers you’re serious about buying a home, which is always a plus in your corner.

        2. Accelerate the Homebuying Process

        Pre-approval can also speed up the homebuying process, so you can move faster when you’re ready to make an offer. In a competitive arena like we have today, being ready to put your best foot forward when the time comes may be the leg-up you need to cross the finish line first and land the home of your dreams.

        3. Know What You Can Borrow and Afford

        Here’s the other thing: if you’re pre-approved, you also have a better sense of your budget, what you can afford, and ultimately how much you’re eligible to borrow for your mortgage. This way, you’re less apt to fall in love with a home that may be out of your reach.

        Freddie Mac sets out the advantages of pre-approval in the My Home section of their website:

        “It’s highly recommended that you work with your lender to get pre-approved before you begin house hunting. Pre-approval will tell you how much home you can afford and can help you move faster, and with greater confidence, in competitive markets.”

        Local real estate professionals also have relationships with lenders who can help you through this process, so partnering with a trusted advisor will be key for that introduction. Once you select a lender, you’ll need to fill out their loan application and provide them with important information regarding “your credit, debt, work history, down payment and residential history.”

        Freddie Mac also describes the ‘4 Cs’ that help determine the amount you’ll be qualified to borrow:

        1. Capacity: Your current and future ability to make your payments
        2. Capital or Cash Reserves: The money, savings, and investments you have that can be sold quickly for cash
        3. Collateral: The home, or type of home, that you would like to purchase
        4. Credit: Your history of paying bills and other debts on time

        While there are still many additional steps you’ll need to take in the homebuying process, it’s clear why pre-approval is always the best place to begin. It’s your chance to gain the competitive edge you may need if you’re serious about owning a home.

        Bottom Line

        Getting started with pre-approval is a great way to begin the homebuying journey. Let’s get together today to make sure you’re on the fastest path to homeownership.

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          Make the Dream of Homeownership a Reality in 2020

          Make the Dream of Homeownership a Reality in 2020 | MyKCM

          In 1963, Martin Luther King, Jr. led and inspired a powerful movement with his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. Through his passion and determination, he sparked interest, ambition, and courage in his audience. Today, reflecting on his message encourages many of us to think about our own dreams, goals, beliefs, and aspirations. For many Americans, one of those common goals is owning a home: a piece of land, a roof over our heads, and a place where our families can grow and flourish.

          If you’re dreaming of buying a home this year, the best way to start the process is to connect with a Real Estate professional to understand what goes into buying a home. Once you have that covered, then you can answer the questions below to make the best decision for you and your family.

          1. How Can I Better Understand the Process, and How Much Can I Afford?

          The process of buying a home is not one to enter into lightly. You need to decide on key things like how long you plan on living in an area, school districts you prefer, what kind of commute works for you, and how much you can afford to spend.

          Keep in mind, before you start the process to purchase a home, you’ll also need to apply for a mortgage. Lenders will evaluate several factors connected to your financial track record, one of which is your credit history. They’ll want to see how well you’ve been able to minimize past debts, so make sure you’ve been paying your student loans, credit cards, and car loans on time. Most agents have loan officers they trust that they can refer you to.

          According to ConsumerReports.org,

          Financial planners recommend limiting the amount you spend on housing to 25 percent of your monthly budget.”

          2. How Much Do I Need for a Down Payment?

          In addition to knowing how much you can afford on a monthly mortgage payment, understanding how much you’ll need for a down payment is another critical step. Thankfully, there are many different options and resources in the market to potentially reduce the amount you may think you need to put down up front.

          If you’re concerned about saving for a down payment, start small and be consistent. A little bit each month goes a long way. Jumpstart your savings by automatically adding a portion of your monthly paycheck into a separate savings account or house fund. AmericaSaves.org says,

          “Over time, these automatic deposits add up. For example, $50 a month accumulates to $600 a year and $3,000 after five years, plus interest that has compounded.”

          Before you know it, you’ll have enough for a down payment if you’re disciplined and thoughtful about your process.

          3. Saving Takes Time: Practice Living on a Budget

          As tempting as it is to settle in each morning with a fancy cup of coffee from your favorite local shop, putting that daily spend toward your down payment will help accelerate your path to homeownership. It’s the little things that count, so start trying to live on a slightly tighter budget if you aren’t doing so already. A budget will allow you to save more for your down payment and help you pay down other debts to improve your credit score. A survey of Millennial spending shows,

          “70 percent of would-be first-time homebuyers will cut spending on spa days, shopping and going to the movies in exchange for purchasing a home within the next year.”

          While you don’t need to cut all of the fun out of your current lifestyle, making smarter choices and limiting your spending in areas where you can slim down will make a big difference.

          Bottom Line

          If homeownership is on your dream list this year, take a good look at what you can prioritize to help you get there. Let’s get together today to discuss the best steps you can take to start the process.

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            Buying a Home Early Can Significantly Increase Future Wealth

            Buying a Home Early Can Significantly Increase Future Wealth | MyKCM
             

            According to an Urban Institute study, homeowners who purchase a house before age 35 are better prepared for retirement at age 60.

            The good news is, our younger generations are strong believers in homeownership.

            According to a Freddie Mac survey,

            “The dream of homeownership is alive and well within “Generation Z,” the demographic cohort following Millennials.

            Our survey…finds that Gen Z views homeownership as an important goal. They estimate that they will attain this goal by the time they turn 30 years old, three years younger than the current median homebuying age (33).”

            Buying a Home Early Can Significantly Increase Future Wealth | MyKCM

            If these aspiring homeowners purchase at an early age, the Urban Institute study shows the impact it can have.

            Based on this data, those who purchased their first homes when they were younger than 25 had an average of $10,000 left on their mortgage at age 60. The 50% of buyers who purchased in their mid-20s and early-30s had close to $50,000 left but traditionally purchased more expensive homes.

            Buying a Home Early Can Significantly Increase Future Wealth | MyKCM

            Although the vast majority of Gen Zers want to own a home and are somewhat confident in their future, “In terms of financial awareness, 65% of Gen Z respondents report that they are not confident in their knowledge of the mortgage process.”

            Bottom Line

            As the numbers show, you’re not alone. If you want to buy this year but you’re not sure where to start the process, let’s get together to help you understand the best steps to take from here.

             

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              2020 Luxury Market Forecast

              2020 Luxury Market Forecast | MyKCM - Open Stairwell with Couple in the Foyer
               

              By the end of last year, many homeowners found themselves with more equity than they realized, and at the same time their wages were increasing. When those two factors unite, it can spark homeowners to think about making a move to a larger or more expensive home in the luxury space. That said, now is a perfect opportunity to take a look at the forecast for the 2020 luxury market.

              Three Things to Think About in the 2020 Luxury Housing Market

              1. Prices

              The U.S. economy is strong today, with buying opportunities throughout the luxury end of the market. Thomas Veraguth, Strategist at UBS Global Wealth Management, says in Barrons.com,

              “There’s a good link between luxury real estate prices and [economic] growth.”

              Available inventory is a key element that can impact home prices. At the upper range, the inventory is greater in comparison to the entry-level market, making moving up to a luxury home a growing reality for many buyers right now.

              2. Activity in the Market

              With more buying opportunities at the higher end, we should start to see an increase in activity. The same article states,

              “Affluent homebuyers will start to come out of the woodwork as they find rising luxury rents less appealing and sellers get even more negotiable on price.”

              Buyers looking in the luxury market are taking the opportunity to negotiate on price in a segment where there are more choices, too. According to the Luxury Market Report, homes sold for an average of 96.94% of the list price in December.

              Buyers are also getting more for their money with greater purchasing power due to the current low interest rates.

              3. Buyers Are Coming Back

              Keep in mind, buyers are often sellers too, especially those looking to move up. Homeowners with an entry-level home can take advantage of the inventory shortage at the lower end of the market, thus driving higher sales prices for their current homes. Combined with growing equity in the homes they’re listing, it’s a great time for those who are ready to make a luxury move.

              The extra equity and greater purchasing power are bringing many buyers back to the market. The same article mentioned that,

              “We’ve already seen buyers who’ve been on the sidelines for two years tread back into the market.”

              Bottom Line

              If you’re considering entering the luxury market, 2020 is shaping up to be a great year for those who are ready to make that move. Let’s get together to set your real estate plan for the year.

              2020 Outlook: Real Estate Market Forecast

              We’re in the midst of the longest economic expansion in U.S. history, and economists think there’s still room to grow. A recent survey by the National Association for Business Economics found that experts believe the U.S. economy will remain positive throughout 2020.1

              Still, given that recessions are a natural (and necessary) part of a business cycle, we know this period of growth will inevitably end. So you may be wondering … how will an eventual recession impact the real estate market?

              Many Americans assume a recession would lead to a decline in housing prices like we saw during the Great Recession of 2008. But the real estate market crash we experienced wasn’t typical. In fact, the last recession wasn’t typical at all. It was the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

              ATTOM Data Solutions analyzed real estate prices during the last five recessions and found that, in the majority of cases, home prices actually went up. Only twice (in 1990 and 2008) did prices decline, and in 1990 it was by less than one percent.2

              So what can historical precedent—combined with today’s data—tell us about the future of real estate? Here’s where experts predict the housing market is headed in 2020 and beyond.

               

              HOME PRICES WILL KEEP RISING

              Economists predict U.S. housing prices will continue to rise, regardless of a recession. In fact, property data firm CoreLogic forecasts a faster rate of growth for home prices in 2020 than we saw in 2019, with the biggest gains at the lower end of the market.3

              Arch MI Chief Economist Ralph DeFranco expects entry-level home prices to increase faster than incomes this year, making it even more difficult for many first-time buyers to afford to enter the market.4

              “Low interest rates and a shortage of starter homes will continue to push up prices,” predicts DeFranco. “This is especially the case for lower price points, since builders have tended to focus on more expensive, higher-profit houses and less on replenishing low inventories of entry-level homes.”4

              “Real estate is on firm ground with little chance of price declines,” said National Association of Realtors Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. "However, in order for the market to be healthier, more supply is needed to assure home prices as well as rents do not consistently outgrow income gains.”5

              What does it mean for you? If you have the ability and desire to buy a home now, don’t let a fear of recession or falling prices hold you in limbo. Economists expect home values, as well as rent prices, to continue rising. So you’ll likely pay more the longer you wait.

               

              INVENTORY CONSTRAINTS WILL CONTINUE

              According to Redfin, Americans are staying in their homes longer. In 2019, the average homeowner had resided in their home for 13 years, up from just eight years in 2010. That means there are fewer homes available today for those who want to buy.6

              It’s possible that an increase in new construction could offer some relief. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) expects single-family housing starts to total one million this year, the highest level since 2007. And NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun predicts the average price of new construction will decline slightly as builders shift to building smaller, more affordable homes.7

              However, these efforts may not be enough to meet current demand. “Despite improvements to new construction and short waves of sellers, next year will once again fail to bring a solution to the inventory shortage,” predicts Realtor.com Senior Economist George Ratiu. “In 2020, we expect inventory to struggle to grow and could instead reach a historic low level.”8

              What does it mean for you? If you’re looking to buy a starter home, be prepared to compete for the best listings. Start your search early, and if you’re up against a deadline (like a new baby), build in plenty of time to find the right home. We can help you assess your options, including new construction and up-and-coming developments.

               

              MORTGAGE RATES WILL REMAIN LOW

              Mortgage rates have declined more than a full percentage point since November 2018, when they hit a recent peak of 4.94%.9 The Mortgage Bankers Association predicts rates will remain low, at around 3.7%, through mid-2021.10

              While it may not seem significant, on a $200,000 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, that lower rate means buyers could save around $145 on their monthly payment and more than $52,000 over the life of their mortgage. Lower mortgage rates make homeownership more accessible and affordable for buyers.

              Although economists expect mortgage rates to stay low, they caution against waiting to act. Economic factors, shifts in supply and demand, or unforeseen impacts of the November election could cause rates to rise unexpectedly. “We recommend borrowers with long-term plans of staying in their homes to lock in a low rate now because there’s no telling how long these low rates will last,” warns Preetam Purohit, a capital markets trader at Embrace Home Loans.11

              What does it mean for you? If you’re looking to buy a home, act soon to lock in a historically low mortgage rate. It will minimize your monthly payment and could save you a bundle over the long term. And if you plan to stay in your current home for a while, consider whether it makes sense to refinance your mortgage at today’s lower rates.

               

              MILLENNIALS WILL DRIVE THE MARKET

              Millennials are expected to account for more than half of all mortgages this year, outnumbering Generation X and Baby Boomers combined. It’s not surprising, considering their age and stage of life. In 2020, the largest cohort of millennials will turn 30, and the oldest millennials will turn 39.8

              "Family changes tend to drive home-buying decisions," explains Realtor.com Chief Economist Danielle Hale. "Millennials are going to be active in the housing market not just because they're just at the age when they're thinking about becoming first-time home buyers, but they're also in the age range when they're having kids."12

              Younger millennials flocked to urban centers that offered easy access to work, shopping, and restaurants. But high prices, lack of square footage, and subpar schools are driving millennials out to the suburbs as they begin to marry and expand their families.

              In response, a new model for suburban living has emerged. “Hipsturbias,” or mixed-use communities that bring the live/work/play concept to the suburbs, were recently named one of the top real estate trends for 2020 by the Urban Land Institute.4

              What does it mean for you? If you’re a millennial who has been priced out of urban living or is looking for more space for your growing family, a number of suburbs in our area have a lot to offer. We can point you towards the communities that will best meet your needs. And if you’re a homeowner with plans to sell, give us a call. We know how to market your home to millennials … and can help you sell quickly for top dollar by appealing to this leading market segment!

               

              WE’RE HERE TO GUIDE YOU

              While national real estate numbers can provide a “big picture” outlook, real estate is local. As local market experts, we can guide you through the ins and outs of our market and the issues most likely to impact sales and home values in your particular neighborhood.

              If you’re considering buying or selling a home in 2020, contact us now to schedule a free consultation. We’ll work with you to develop an action plan to meet your real estate goals this year.

               

              START PREPARING TODAY


              If you plan to BUY this year:

              1. Get pre-approved for a mortgage. If you plan to finance part of your home purchase, getting pre-approved for a mortgage will give you a jump-start on the paperwork and provide an advantage over other buyers in a competitive market. The added bonus: you will find out how much you can afford to borrow and budget accordingly.
              2. Create your wish list. How many bedrooms and bathrooms do you need? How far are you willing to commute to work? What’s most important to you in a home? We can set up a customized search that meets your criteria to help you find the perfect home for you.
              3. Come to our office. The buying process can be tricky. We’d love to guide you through it. We can help you find a home that fits your needs and budget, all at no cost to you. Give us a call to schedule an appointment today!

               

              If you plan to SELL this year:

              1. Call us for a FREE Comparative Market Analysis. A CMA not only gives you the current market value of your home, it will also show how your home compares to others in the area. This will help us determine which repairs and upgrades may be required to get top dollar for your property, and it will help us price your home correctly once you’re ready to list.
              2. Prep your home for the market. Most buyers want a home they can move into right away, without having to make extensive repairs and upgrades. We can help you determine which ones are worth the time and expense to deliver maximum results.
              3. Start decluttering. Help your buyers see themselves in your home by packing up personal items and things you don’t use regularly and storing them in an attic or storage locker. This will make your home appear larger, make it easier to stage ... and get you one step closer to moving when the time comes!

               

              Sources:

              1. NBC News -
                https://www.nbcnews.com/business/economy/what-impending-recession-new-survey-shows-most-people-think-they-n1098511
              2. Curbed -
                https://www.curbed.com/2019/1/10/18139601/recession-impact-housing-market-interest-rates
              3. HousingWire  -
                https://www.housingwire.com/articles/corelogic-expects-home-prices-to-do-this-in-the-next-12-months/
              4. Forbes -
                https://www.forbes.com/sites/alyyale/2019/11/15/2020-housing-outlook-expert-predictions-for-mortgage-rates-home-prices-tech-and-more/#343ea4522935
              5. National Association of Realtors -
                https://www.nar.realtor/newsroom/expect-continued-economic-growth-slower-real-estate-price-gains-and-small-chance-for-recession-in
              6. Redfin -
                https://www.redfin.com/blog/homeowners-staying-in-their-homes-longer/
              7. HousingWire -
                https://www.housingwire.com/articles/builders-are-coming-to-the-housing-markets-rescue/
              8. Realtor.com -
                https://www.realtor.com/research/2020-national-housing-forecast/
              9. YCharts -
                https://ycharts.com/indicators/30_year_mortgage_rate
              10. MBA Mortgage Market Forecast November 2019  -
                https://www.mba.org/news-research-and-resources/research-and-economics/forecasts-and-commentary
              11. Dallas Morning News -
                https://www.dallasnews.com/sponsored/real-estate/2019/11/23/experts-predict-where-mortgage-interest-rates-land-in-2020/
              12. Realtor.com -
                https://www.realtor.com/news/trends/biggest-changes-coming-in-2020-real-estate-and-tips-for-buyers-and-sellers/

               

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                The True Cost of Not Owning Your Home

                The True Cost of Not Owning Your Home | MyKCM - Family with their Children
                 

                There are great advantages to owning a home, yet many people continue to rent. The financial benefits are just some of the reasons why homeownership has been a part of the long-standing American dream.

                Realtor.com reported that:

                “Buying remains the more attractive option in the long term – that remains the American dream, and it’s true in many markets where renting has become really the shortsighted option…as people get more savings in their pockets, buying becomes the better option.”

                Why is owning a home financially better than renting?

                Here are the top 5 financial benefits of homeownership:

                1. Homeownership is a form of forced savings.
                2. Homeownership provides tax savings.
                3. Homeownership allows you to lock in your monthly housing cost.
                4. Buying a home is less expensive than renting.
                5. No other investment lets you live inside of it.

                Studies have also shown that a homeowner’s net worth is 44x greater than that of a renter.

                A family that purchased a median-priced home at the start of 2019 would build more than
                $37,750 in family wealth over the next five years with projected price appreciation alone.

                Some argue that renting eliminates the cost of taxes and home repairs, but every potential renter must realize that all the expenses the landlord incurs are already baked into the rent payment – along with a profit margin!

                Bottom Line

                Owning a home has many social and financial benefits that cannot be achieved by renting. Let’s connect to determine if buying a home is your best move.

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                  How to List Your Home for the Best Price

                  Home vs. Money with Gray Hands

                  If your plan for 2019 includes selling your home, you will want to pay attention to where experts believe home values are headed. According to the latest Home Price Index from CoreLogic, home prices increased by 4.7% over the course of 2018.

                  The map below shows the results of the latest index by state.

                  United States Map with Different Colors and Actual Percentages for the Year-Over-Year Change in Price

                  Real estate is local. Each state appreciates at different levels. The majority of the country saw at least a 2.0% gain in home values, while some residents in North Dakota and Louisiana may have felt prices slow slightly.

                  This effect will be short lived. In the same report, CoreLogic forecasts that every state in the Union will experience at least 2.0% appreciation, with the majority of the country gaining at least 4.0%! The prediction for the country comes in at 4.6%. For a median-priced home, that translates to over $14,000 in additional equity next year! (The map below shows the forecast by state.)

                  United States Map with Different Colors and Forecasted Percentages for the Year-Over-Year Change in Price

                  So, how does this help you list your home for the best price?

                  Armed with the knowledge of how much experts believe your house will appreciate this year, you will be able to set an appropriate price for your listing from the start. If homes like yours are appreciating at 4.0%, you won’t want to list your home for more than that amount!

                  One of the biggest mistakes homeowners make is pricing their homes too high and reducing the price later when they do not get any offers. This can lead buyers to believe that there may be something wrong with the home, when in fact the price was just too high for the market.

                  Bottom Line

                  Pricing your home right from the start is one of the most challenging parts of selling your home. Once you decide to list your house, let’s get together to discuss where home values are headed in your area!

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