Joe Haughey’s Tucson Real Estate Blog

Happy New Year.

2016 was a great year and a blessing… Liz and I want to wish all a Healthy, Prosperous, and Happy New Year in 2017!

2015 has been a great Year!

Liz and I would like to wish all a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year for 2016!

The Top 5 Reasons to Buy a House Right Now

11-09-2011_399(49).jpgThe time to buy your first, next or vacation home has never been better than right now. There are several motivational tools floating around that encourage potential homebuyers to take advantage of the market now. The biggest part of the decision is finding the reason that makes it the right time for you. One of the largest investments of a lifetime is buying a house and it makes perfect sense to only do so at the best times. There are those times when it’s simply not a buyer’s market but that’s not the case at this point and time. In fact, there are a few reasons you should be preparing to buy a house today.


1. Interests Rates are Low

 Banks are offering the lowest interest rates of all time on home financing. The rate of interest received on a home loan greatly influences the amount of home you can afford. The lower the rate you’re approved for automatically positions you for lower payments. It’s always a primary concern of homebuyers, especially first time buyers that their mortgage rate is at a comfortable amount. Interest rates have a history of rising, rising and falling but never for a set amount of time. It’s best to prepare for a home purchase whenever rates are at a good standing.


2. A Gallery of Choices

 It’s one thing to want to buy a home but when the desire to purchase is equally accommodated by a large selection of choices, it’s the best motivation ever. There aren’t always a large number of homes on the market for sale and often times, those that are, may not be on your list of likes. The availability of homes is so great right now that there is sure to be more than enough for you to find the home of your dreams. This makes it possible to not have to settle for a home you don’t particularly favor.


3. Home Prices will Rise

There’s no denying that as the market continues on the upward trend, increase in the cost of homes is going to happen. The demand is great, interest rates are prime and every home on the list will eventually experience a jump. Therefore, it’s a great time to wage an offer on that home you’ve been watching. One quick blink, the cost could change and not necessarily in your favor.


4. Rent vs Mortgage Factor

Any renter can attest to the fact that it’s much more beneficial to pay monthly payments towards something that you will one day own. The act of investing monthly payments into a house rental is one that causes negative activity in your cash flow. Mortgage amounts are typically less than rent and the low interest rates make this payment considerably less at this time.


5. US Economy is Rising 

A Positive economy makes conditions more favorable for approvals of home loans and building projects. The healthy state of the US economy interprets that employment is steady, people are replenishing the economy by making purchases and money is less restrictive. The decision to purchase a home now is highly encouraged by the state of the US economy.

Your College Student is Moving out of State and Into His Very Own Home All at Once

Many parents begin to look forward to the moment their child or children graduate and leave the nest egg. They can only imagine the peaceful nights, quality time and extra food that they’ll enjoy. Many of these thoughts often overwhelm the negative feelings that exist such as the anxiety, the concern for their safety and their overall ability to make it in the world without mom or dad. This is all very common but there are important decisions to be made in order to make the transition as smooth and effective as possible. One of the most important decisions involve that of housing and it’s a major one for many parents. In fact, you’d be surprised to learn that many parents are electing to buy homes for their out of state college students. Could this be a trending benefit?

Save Money         

The most beneficial factor of buying a home for out of state students is the savings that you’ll experience. The money spent on campus housing for out of state students can be excessive. The option of obtaining a mortgage that is much cheaper is one that appeals to many parents. In addition, many students choose out of state schools with friends from high school and if parents of both students agree on the option to buy, it cuts costs even more. All of the utilities, food and other household expenses can be divided and everyone saves as an end result. This is a great investment into the future of the student as well because it helps to establish major credit history for hem early in life.

Develop Responsible Habits

The idea of owning a home would be every students dream but what about the responsibility that accompanies that dream? It’s not going to be as easy as most would imagine because all of the things once handled by parents are now their responsibility. Utility bills, home repairs, maintenance are all things that will have to be attended to by the student, if not completely overseen. This is a great measure for teaching them how to handle responsibility at an early stage in life. It helps them to develop the necessary habits of survival while they’re pursuing their education. Once they’ve reached their educational goals, they will be well prepared for life and its responsibilities.

Long Term Advantages

In an effort to give your child the very best education possible, owning their own house is a great contribution towards this as well. Many times, campus life can be a bit busy and distracting to the student. Choosing to buy a house affords the option of selecting a quiet neighborhood that isn’t directly affected by college life. Once the student is moved in and begins to settle, he can make the most of the calm setting of the home location. The first home can be called home for as long as the student chooses or possibly an investment property once they are ready to move on in life.



Affordable Housing Is on the Horizon

Hands of businessman with calculator.Buying a home is a common dream that is shared by many. The realization of that dream can be a bit more difficult for some than others. One of the most common derailments in the pursuit of a home purchase is in the area of financing. Though there are several available options, not all of them help in the area of decreasing the amount of the initial investment. Because of this, many people have to wait longer to purchase a home. They need more time to save for the down payment and this is not always the easiest goal to accomplish. The Arizona Buyer Assistance Program provides help for those who qualify for home financing but need down payment assistance in order to gain affordable housing.

Smaller Initial Investment

The Arizona Buyer Assistance Program helps the homeowner to obtain the home with less of an initial investment. This allows many to buy a new home sooner than initially anticipated. The opportunity to put their funds toward actual home ownership instead of rental payments will also afford them an opportunity to begin building value in their own home instead of property that belongs to someone else. After undergoing certain courses and counseling programs, the buyer can move forward with the purchase process. The ability to buy for a smaller down payment may also help them to have money left over that can be used towards mortgage payments.

Affordable Options

The assistance program makes it possible for many people who felt they’d never be able to purchase a home to do so. Income perspectives considered, present many more affordable housing options for those who live within certain income means. This is especially significant for individuals who meet every other criteria but have limited income resources. The best feeling of homeownership is the ability to purchase a home without the fear of not being able to afford it. The Arizona Buyer Assistance Program puts home ownership within reach for many people.

The Permanent Purchase

The goal of the Arizona Buyers Assistance Program is to generate affordable housing that is a permanent purchase of the buyer. This simply means that the structure is designed to place individuals in affordable housing in which they can begin to build a permanent life. Payments that are affordable and easy to maintain are what the program aims to deliver to all of its participants.


Buyers Beware Before You Sign in Purchasing a New Home

Purchasing a new home can be exciting, motivating and overwhelming to say the least. All of the emotions combined can sometimes cause the buyer to be a bit less attentive to the details and more concerned with the climax and close of the deal. Because of this buyer’s anxiety, it is easy to overlook important information that is included in the contract. This information is binding and most likely can’t and won’t be changed once the signature is added. Therefore, it is imperative to read, understand, ask questions and review what you’ve read numerous of times before placing your signature on the contract.

Magnify the MLS Listing

As a buyer, it is never safe to assume that everything is as it appears. In fact, it’s only safe to assume that nothing is as it appears and therefore, you should double check every aspect of your contract. The MLS listing is often the burden of many buyers because they assume if it’s listed, it’s theirs. There are occasions when the buyer and seller begin to renegotiate the terms of the contract by asking for extras and adding these things into the contract. At this point, it is best to also rewrite all of the original inclusions (which appeared on the MLS listing) into the new documents or contracts as well. This will provide protection and present certain guarantees at the close of the deal. This also makes it binding in the event something isn’t honoured by the seller.

It is important for the buyer to understand that there are certain appliances that are considered a part of the property and under no circumstances should they be taken away once the property is sold. This is a binding portion of the home sale and it should be clearly understood by both parties to avoid any unforeseen incidences from occurring after the close of the deal.

As Is Property

The As Is terminology in regards to a real estate contract must be clearly understood. The details of it and parties responsible for certain “As Is” conditions is extremely important. Buyers should be fully informed or knowledgeable of any repairs associated with the sale and who holds responsibility for those repairs. Buyers should be certain to get full estimates that detail the complete cost of the repair that you are assuming as is. These costs increase the overall investment you’ll be placing into the home as part of the purchase.

“As is” home sales are quite common and there are only a few notables to be considered when purchasing a home under these conditions. Sellers still have a responsibility to the buyer to disclose any and all facts of materials and defects that they have knowledge of regarding the home. The buyer has the right to conduct property inspections within all provisions of the purchase contract agreement. In addition, the buyer does have rights to negotiate conditions discovered in their inspection as well.

Reading and reviewing all contracts before signing will drastically reduce the risk of after closing nightmares for the buyer.



You Can Buy a Home with Foreclosure on Your Credit

There are many homeowners who have fallen victim to the unfortunate incident of home foreclosure. This is a truly traumatic experience for anyone but it doesn’t mean that life as a homeowner is no longer possible. In fact, it’s actually something that many people are finding to be easier than they thought possible. The recent economic crisis introduced the realism of foreclosure to many lives.

The overwhelming number of qualified buyers who experienced unforeseen circumstances, forced lenders to create avenues to make it possible for them to live out the dream of homeownership, even after enduring a foreclosed home loan. First, face the obvious. For those seeking more conventional loan types, such as Fannie Mae loans it’s usually required that you wait the longest period of time, which is about seven years following your foreclosed loan. Other non-conventional loans don’t require such an extensive wait period.

The wait period is actually to the advantage of the buyer with a foreclosure. This time should be utilized to repair any other negative credit issues that may have surfaced during the economic hardships that were faced. Creditors will be carefully reviewing the entire perspective of the buyer’s credit and payment history. If the foreclosure alone is the biggest concern, it will improve the chance of a home loan approval.

Many homeowners are faced with the option of ending in foreclosure or short sale and are often concerned with how it affects the credit. The biggest advantage of the short sale is that there is usually no past due amount that appears on the credit report but the foreclosure typically indicates the outstanding amount that remains on the loan. Therefore, short sales tend to be the better option when concerned with the effect it has on scoring.

Please understand that you are not the only one living in the foreclosure era nor are you the only one dramatically affected. The large number of people that have faced this crisis has forced the lending market to make amends and create avenues that will allow them to finance again if other stipulations are met. This is a good indication that you can and will become a homeowner because buying a home after a foreclosure is what many of your peers are doing right now.

It’s important that you clean your credit and maintain a stable work history while you wait. Once your wait is over, you’ll want to jump right in and with everything else in place, you’ll have the keys to your new home in no time!

Selling My Home was a Breeze

How many of you consider selling your home but when the thought of the long drawn out process crosses your mind, you immediately lose interest? Well, that’s understandable but I must admit, selling your home isn’t as intense or stressful as you most assume. Yes, there’s the red tape and of course the waiting, but you’ll manage to make it through that part with ease, thanks to the expertise of the realtor who will help you sell your home.

It’s also helpful to become acquainted with the listing documents for selling your home. Your realtor will make these available to you as they will include the listing contract and disclosures for the property and agency.  This may sound a bit overwhelming but it’s actually just the coin that gets the ball rolling. These are the documents that say, “Hey, I’m ready to sell my home.”

You’ll find the decision to enlist the services of a realtor to be the best one of your life. Let’s face it, realtors are experts in the field of home sales and they are the liaison between your home and individuals in the buyer’s market. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that realtors typically have access to multiple listing options. Besides, how many people do you think the For Sale by Owner sign will actually draw in?

Hey, another benefit of your realtor is that he has the potential to generate tons of individuals who are interested in your home. Yes, you get to sit back and watch others in a bidding war to get the home of their dreams. Buyers are eager to purchase, but they assume that you are eager to accept less than your listing price. When in essence, they are usually willing to pay more than they offer. Be gutsy but don’t be arrogant.

Once all of the details have been inked at closing, you’ve found that the process wasn’t half bad after all. In fact, you sold your home at a great price and was better than pleased with the outcome.  Rest assured, closing at title offers a bit more comfort because the title company is there to oversee that all documents are in legal order before the deal closes. Believe me when I say, this is crucial to your health, because one slip of the pin could take your breath away and not in a good sense.

Now that you’ve gotten your house sold, what do you do next? Well, that’s the fun part. It’s time for you to pack up and move. Don’t worry, the new owners won’t be standing at the door with key in hand before you’re out, unless of course you fail to negotiate a move out time that works for both parties. Be sure to put these terms in writing. You wouldn’t want to be evicted from your former home by its new owner.


For Sale By Realtor

So, you’re selling your home? The floors are done, the paint is fresh and the fixtures are all contemporary and fully functional. Your home is ready to sell or is it? What else could you possibly need? Oh no! Don’t sell without a realtor.

In essence, you could choose to list your home on Ebay with a few polished photos, the cost and wait on the calls and emails to start pouring in.  Once you’ve found a buyer, have them send you the money and BOOM…your house is sold!  Only, if it were that easy and because there is so much more to the process, you should clearly use a realtor.

Hiring a realtor to sell your home will help you alleviate the chance of costly mistakes.  Unless selling homes is your profession, there are probably a few things that you aren’t completely knowledgeable of and a realtor can help in this area.  The expertise and knowledge of a realtor can possibly increase the selling price of your home by helping you to realize the true value of your home. 

If you decide to sell without a realtor, once the negotiation and contract phase rolls around, there could be massive amounts of confusion and feelings of frustrations. Years ago, the home buying process was a bit more simple but now the legal disclosures, contract agreements and other legal documents are so intense, that one slip up could have you purchasing the home that you intended to sell. It sounds funny but trust me, definitely not a funny feeling when it happens.

Sell Your Home the “Real”tor Way 

Realtors are professionally trained to help you avoid any contract and negotiation mishaps that could lead to a lifetime of disaster. They are aware of the state and federal mandates that must be met during the selling of your home and will work with you to ensure that they are all met. 

Don’t be misled by faulty commission myths that encourage you to find realtors to sell your home for commission amounts less than 6%.  Keep in mind, in most cases the commission amount is divided among other parties, which decreases the amount your realtor actually gets. 

The seller who attempts to pay less in commission is doing himself an injustice as it primarily restricts the incentives that other agents have to bring buyers to your home because your realtor has limited funds available to market your home.  Agents are motivated to show homes of sellers who are motivated to sell and offering a small commission doesn’t say “I’m motivated to sell.” If you believe in the value of your home, place an equal value on the quality and effort given of your realtor.

Do you see the difference in a “For Sale by Owner” and a “For Sale by Realtor?” Call me today for information on selling your home!

I Want to Buy a House but Who’s Going to Pay My Agent

You want to buy a home and quite possibly have already started the process but wait don’t forget to take care of your agent’s fees.  At this moment, if you’re like most people, you’re probably a bit jarred as to what this means to you.  The agent who takes the time and dedicates hours and sometimes months to finding the perfect home for you, must be paid but is it your responsibility?

First, let’s be clear in that several buyers are somewhat fogged about the manner in which their agents are paid.  There is a common belief that agents are paid by the companies they work for.  While this has an extent of truth to it, it’s not where the money actually comes from.  In fact, let’s clear this misconception before we go any further.  The buyer’s agent is paid by the seller.

This indeed is good to know but there is more to it than just that.  First and foremost, it’s impossible to pay the buyer’s agent if the buyer doesn’t secure one.  Because there is no execution of payment from the buyer as a promise of exclusive services from the agent, how does the agent know you’ll commit to make your final purchase through them?

A buyer-broker agreement acts as a tool of security for the buyer as well as the agent.  A lack of understanding of what this agreement does for the buyer can often cause buyers to question it.  The buyer’s agent works hard to find the home that fits your needs.  Signing this agreement only indicates your intent to purchase with the agent indicated on the agreement.  It’s only fair that the agent has the security of knowing they’ll be paid for their services. In return the buyer is reassured that their agent will work diligently to find them a home in order to be paid.

When the decision is made to place a home on the market for sale, people have one thought in mind.  They think to themselves, “I want to sell my home.” This initiates an agreement that grants payment to the agent that brings them a buyer.  As a buyer, use an agent that has your best interest in mind.  It is essential that you stick with them because choosing to purchase through one other than indicated on the agreement, will require you to pay the required agent commission.  Therefore, committing to the buyer-broker agreement actually saves money on your new home purchase.  Who wouldn’t want to save money?


Needing a buyer’s agent in Tucson, Arizona for the purchase of your new home? Contact me today to help find your dream home.

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