Buyer's Agent

Reno

Which property type is right for you?

Learn About Different Types of Property for Home Buyers

  • Condo/Townhouse
    • You own a unit (solely) within a larger complex, complete with common areas owned jointly with all other unit owners. *an apartment is rented out, not for sale. An apartment can have the identical appearance of a condo, the difference is, individual ownership vs. renters from the building owner/landlord. A townhouse is generally a tall, often 3-story (or more) home that can share walls with its neighbors, or not. A townhouse will most likely sit in a planned community with common areas etc. Either will have an HOA (Home Owner’s Association) which means additional monthly fees and rules!  
  • Single-Family Residence
    • This is a stand-alone house. It can have common areas off the property itself and be subject to an HOA as well. 
  • Mobile/Manufactured homes
    • These can be called by a number of different names; pre-fabricated / pre-fab. houses, trailers Etc. They can sit on several different types of land; mobile home park, leased land or on owned land. If the mobile home is in a mobile home park, there is an HOA, and you don’t own the land, you lease it from the park. If the mobile home is on leased land, there may not be an HOA, but you still rent the land from the landlord. If the Mobile home is located on owned land, then you own the lot and the mobile home much in the same way that a single-family residence is owned. *if the mobile home is bought new from the manufacturer and moved to a lot that you own, you may be able to convert the mobile home to real property – meaning it will be owned and sold as residential property rather than owning a vacant lot with “improvements” or in this case a mobile home on it. Real property ownership is worth more. Keep that in mind if you are shopping for one! The key word is convertible 
  • New Construction
  • Vacation Home or Second Home
    • Whether you are considering a vacation or second home for a weekend escape or a family legacy property let your Exclusive Buyer’s Agent (EBA) guide you through the decision making process as well as the transaction assuring a smooth and enjoyable experience.
  • Luxury Property
    • What exactly is a “luxury” home? While most home buyers would believe it’s anything upward of $1 million or more, Luxury Home Digest might describe it best: “A luxury property must offer a superior location, a stunning property entry, significant architectural detail, fine décor’, decadent amenities, excellent entertainment areas, lovely grounds, and myriad other details that help a home stand out from the ordinary.”
  • Investment Property
    • An Exclusive Buyer Agent can help you find excellent real estate investment opportunities. Your EBA will also provide strategic market guidance and fiduciary representation, helping you obtain the property at the best price and terms that serve your interests.
  • Foreclosed Property
  • Retirement Living
  • Short Sale
    • Short sales are a relatively recent type of real estate transaction. They were almost unheard of prior to the property market melt down in 2006. Now they make up a significant portion of the homes for sale in many cities, and there are industry predictions that suggest they will be a large share of the market for at least another five years.

For more information of the different type of properties Click Here

Tips for buying a home

  1. When doing a drive by of the home before you look inside… do a “drive about”. In other words; if it is close to the weekends, observe the neighbors on all sides, including behind the home. Evenings and weekends are a good time to see what is going on outside and if this particular home is being used as a skateboarding launchpad OR if all other the neighbors have claimed your parking spots..etc..
  2. Try to stay away from homes on an outside corner lot.
  3. Check for electrical boxes (you know the great big green boxes in the front yard).
  4. Is there a street light on the property? You may not like that shining in your bedroom every night.
  5. In this day and age – it is best not to say anything while at a showing of the home. There are cameras everywhere. Text with your agent. You don’t want to sound too eager and at the same time you don’t want to disrespect someone else’s home.
  6. NEVER fall in love with the house before its yours. This is an investment and you can make it a home later.
  7. While doing your drive about…count how many rentals are within a 2 mile radius from the home you are considering.

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Top Misconceptions of Home Buyers

  1. The sellers are in control.
  2. All real estate agents are the same.
  3. I probably can’t qualify for a loan.
  4. I think renting is just fine for now.
  5. It’s too hard to buy a house because I have never done it before.
  6. I am afraid I won’t know if I am paying too much for everything.
  7. It seems the industry speaks another language and I don’t know how to learn it.
  8. I would like to buy an investment and live-in it for a few years and possibly do that again to start my portfolio. But the experience seems intimidating.
  9. I wish there was an easy way to get started.

There is an easy way, I promise you. Contact Us Today for a FREE Consultation

I am ready to buy a house. Wait!! What shoes should I wear?

  1. Find an exclusive buyer’s agent who will only represent you, under all circumstances, and then you can wear slippers.
  2. Get good recommendations for a FEW lenders. Then interview them until you find the right fit.
  3. Make out a Wants vs Needs list before even looking at any properties on line. Needs come first!
  4. Together, with the lenders opinion of your price range capability, your house needs being met, you will be able to narrow choices and not have to look at soooooo many pairs of shoes (I mean Houses 😉) before you know.

7 ways to save money

  1. Shop lenders by asking them what their processing (or junk fees) are and what their interest rates are.
  2. Stay under the price range that the lender has told you qualify for.
  3. Try not to buy in an HOA.
  4. If you buy something that just needs a little lipstick (paint, elbow grease, and/or carpet) you will save money through your own sweat equity.
  5. Find an exclusive buyer’s agent whose only purpose in life is to save you money.
  6. Be sure and have the entire house and its mechanicals inspected to help with money from seller to have them fixed.
  7. Ask for a home warranty that includes all appliances. This is different from a home owners insurance policy and will cover the mechanics and appliances for a year with a deductible sometimes as low as $30.00. If they can’t fix it they will get you a new one. This includes heaters and a/c folks!!

What is an HOA and how will it affect me?

Home Owners Association (HOA) is an entity on its own in the state of Nevada. I don’t know how they did it, but they have more authority than most entities. They make up their own rules, time lines, budgets, fees, board members and the list goes on.

There is very little in the Nevada Revised Statutes that governs them or keeps them from fining you for many different reasons. I have seen someone get fined for talking on their phone outside!!

The other thing is the HOA fees or dues, can go up depending on what needs to be replaced or repaired.

When it comes to your monthly mortgage payment, the HOA fee will be included in your qualifying payment. Which in pure simple terms means, you may have to buy a lower priced home in order to afford the payment that you qualify for. Without that HOA fee you could possibly qualify for a higher loan. Make sure you are comparing apples to apples.

Good side – an HOA often includes the maintenance of many amenities that YOU don’t physically have to maintain; such as pools, ponds, green areas, walkways and sometimes even your homes exterior paint. Some projects even have tennis courts or clubhouses as well. Just keep in mind what your lifestyle is and whether it is a necessity or not.

When purchasing into an HOA it is a good idea to be able to read the 3 most current HOA meeting minutes, so you can see if there are any “community” problems discussed that will need attention in your near future. You can learn other types of info as well; like who is leading the pack, so to speak, and who or what seems to be a thorn. Also, ask for the 3 most current P&L’s (profit and loss statements) so you can see just how solvent the HOA is and what they are saving for etc. Then, compare the overall look of the complex. Are they doing their job to upkeep it? Does it look like money well spent or not enough spent?

When you are ready to purchase in an HOA governed community, you need to read the CC&R’S which will tell you what is and isn’t allowed. This will pertain to attributes like parking, visitors, rv’s, motorcycles, garbage cans, cell phones etc.

Fixer Upper vs Turn Key??

Fixer upper can come in varying degrees of fixing. Don’t go beyond your scope of ability/comfort or your fixer budget all because it is a “Sweet Deal”. Sweet can turn into sour in a matter of minutes! Your once sweet deal then becomes someone else’s even “sweeter deal”, as you have no choice/no money to do anything but turn around and sell it to someone else.

It is critical to get a home inspection and a contractor to review the home before you buy it. If you are looking at moving walls or anything else that might require you to improve the curb appeal, then add an interior designer to the mix. They are a very knowledgeable resource and will be able to help you get what you want for less time and money. Not to mention they will help you stay on timelines and within your budget.

Fixer uppers CAN be a good way to go and often work best if the items that need to be fixed are not the kitchen or the bathrooms. If you are going to DIY, make sure there are no holes in the roof, you have a place to sleep, eat, shower and relax. Otherwise the ideal scenario is to do it yourself, if you have another place to live, know how to do things yourself, have cash to purchase materials, have a good relationship with your partner and perhaps most importantly, have the time. It CAN work out well for you, all these things considered, by the following spring, when you are ready to sell it and then do it again!!

Note: Fixers tend to be less expensive when comparing to what we call a turn key property. Turn key is a home that doesn’t need anything right now to move in.

Credit protection tips

How do I build a “Shield” for my credit?!

In the past, NO credit was as bad or even worse than bad credit. Not so true anymore, but still better to HAVE credit.

Be careful how you go about setting up your credit history! Map it out, and check out the best credit card that suits your purpose (please don’t look at Victoria’s secret as an option) as you want an option that you can use for gas/groceries/living expenses. The purpose being, you need those things and you can pay it off each month. Remember, don’t ever charge for something you don’t have enough cash to pay off in 3 weeks. Why 3 weeks? 0% to minimal interest rates apply if you pay it off before it is due!

After a few months you will see your FICO score start to move upward. If you are currently renting, talk to your landlord about supplying payment history to the top three “big credit dogs”. Those are: Transunion, Experian and Equifax.

Also, don’t ever have your credit checked by someone who is trying to sell you something! Even if it is “free”! That inquiry tells the FICO computer that you are about to make a purchase. It automatically figures that you purchased whatever it is and then promptly lowers your score. Not fair but true. This is called a hard credit check. There are soft credit checks too but that is only 1/3 true. You need all 3 big dogs to put in their opinions (numbers) and then the real fico score will be the one in the middle. Often with the soft credit checks or “free credit checks” you will generally get one of the big 3 to ante in and even then it will be one of the three scores that comes back (low, middle or high). So it’s a crap shoot.

LaNae Cloud
Broker

Rumors! Rumors! Rumors!

As I peruse the web on what’s trending, what other people think you (the consumer-client) want to hear about I end up scratching my head a little, getting up from my computer screen to look out my window and make sure I am still in the same world I thought I lived in and then I settle back in to the digital noise. In this moment, I have to say, “What?!” to my peers. The latest one out there is “How to shave 10 days off of your home buying transaction and save $500”. Ok you had my attention until you said “Automated Collateral Evaluations”. Is it just me or does it feel like the internet is sometimes saying “Soon you will never need to talk to another human?” I am attaching the web site that explains the “Automated Collateral Evaluations” which was presented by my beloved National Association of Exclusive Buyers Agents (NAEBA) and probably seemed to them like a good eye catcher but it’s not practical. There are many great loans out there and the best way to find which lender has the best options, the best prices and the least amount of junk fees is to simply talk to a lender in person! Imagine that, in person! A good mortgage broker has so much knowledge; they listen to your questions and weigh your current situation with the best loan you should wear. And I am not a lender!! I just know their value. Bottom line is, increase your knowledge, by going beyond the internet. Do this by going straight to the source. It REALLY pays off in the end.

That web site I mentioned is: http://naeba.org/blog/automated-appraisals-could-ease-home-buying-process

Housing Bubble?!!!

Whoever came up with that moniker was either extremely witty or bordering on the sarcasm front! I picture bubbles with houses in them, popping and falling on the ground, causing mayhem and havoc everywhere. Which it did! The problem now is, it seems every chance that’s given someone has a theory, usually siding with negative Nancy and ultimately trying to scare you from buying a home. It wasn’t the homes that caused the problems, it was the lenders and appraisers at that time following the guide lines that were given to them by the powers that be. They created the “mirror under the nose” test, if you were breathing, you could qualify for a loan. They did this so they could make as many loans as possible and make a ton of money! Well it worked for them but not for us. We are much smarter now AND have the gift of hindsight. Now we can see how it happened and how not to get involved in it again. Yes, the housing market is rising in Reno, but the values are still not as high as just before the Joly Green Giant pulled out his needle and popped all of our bubbles. Reno’s typical market has a minimum of a 3% equity growth in the housing prices per year. We are still one of the top 10 places to live in the country, still have people who love it here and furthermore who want to buy, trade up or move here to be one of us. That’s all good, the more the merrier. You will see from the article I am attaching here, one of the main components to house prices rising is simply, supply and demand.

My advice? Pay more attention to what it costs you per month as opposed to the price. If you get into a home and the price goes up another 19% in 2018 then you made money…if it goes up 3% you still gained equity and the mortgage payment write off is also helping you pay less taxes. Therefore, the loan and the interest rates are key to your success. Which means staying within your means and not overstretching.

Web site as promised: http://naeba.org/blog/are-rising-home-prices-sign-new-housing-bubble