First Time Home Buying

Found 114 blog entries about First Time Home Buying.

Selling a Santa Cruz home in this economy can be challenging. There’s a lot of fixing up, cleaning and planning that goes into putting a house on the market. So when sellers get a bite, they might jump on an offer a little too quickly.

If you’re about to put your house on the market, you should be prepared to counter lowball offers and outrageous contingencies. On the other hand, you need to be ready to accept an offer that meets your demands. Take into consideration the following tips so that you’re prepared when a buyer strikes.

• Closing costs assistance – Many first-time Santa Cruz home buyers have barely enough money to cover their down payments. So if you want to close the deal quickly, you might want to have money set aside in case they ask

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If you have easy access to your attic, a quick inspection will either put your mind at ease or alert you to situations that need to be remedied before they cause problems. Why is now a good time to check your attic? If you’ve ever been in an attic in the summer, you know why you should do it now.

Here are just some of the things you should check out in the attic of your Santa Cruz home:

• Insulation. Is it adequate? Has it shifted around into peaks and valleys? Is it properly installed? Are there gaps that need to be filled?
• Ducts. Are there open joints in the ductwork? Are the ducts insulated?
• Ventilation. Are vent openings blocked? If you see frost on roofing nails, or rust stains or mildew around roofing nails, it means the attic needs more

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As the new year starts, pursuing your dream of buying a Santa Cruz home may be on your list of resolutions. Prices and interest rates are extremely low, which means 2012 could be the perfect year to buy a home. As exciting as that is, I bet it can also feel a little overwhelming.

One of the best ways to attack a big goal is to break it down into smaller goals. So here are four smaller goals you can tackle to accomplish your larger goal of buying a home:

1) Prepare for battle: Before you begin looking for a house, look at your financial situation. Do what you can to clean up any credit blemishes, pay off debt and save toward a down payment.

2) Check your qualifications: There's no sense looking at million dollar mansions if that's not in your

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Urban legends can be found within every industry, and Santa Cruz real estate is no exception. Getting a big discount because a home needs minor repairs or being able to acquire 100 percent financing in a snap definitely isn’t as easy as it sounds and is probably just what you think — a big fat myth.

Whether you’re an experienced buyer or it’s your first time purchasing Santa Cruz real estate, do your research and don’t get sidetracked by enticing fables that might cause you to miss out on your dream home. Below are three debunked mortgage urban legends that have been plaguing the industry for years.

1. You can get a foreclosed home for almost nothing. While foreclosed homes do tend to sell consistently lower than other homes on the market, they’re

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In this economy, cash buyers have the advantage and are swooping in on great housing deals to beat out buyers obtaining loans through banks. Sellers are jumping on these offers because the cash is already secured, they don’t have to worry about finances falling through at the last minute, and it can guarantee quick closing dates on their Santa Cruz homes for sale.

While dealing in ready money definitely gives real estate investors an advantage, don’t get discouraged. There are a few guidelines financed buyers can follow to give them a better hand when it comes to beating out competitors that throw down the cash card.

 Get pre-approved. Talk with a reputable bank and get a pre-approved home loan for a certain amount before you start shopping for

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If you get a mortgage for more than 80% of your Santa Cruz real estate’s fair market value, your lender will require that you pay Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). PMI payments are expensive at about 0.5% to 1% of the entire loan amount on an annual basis.

Obviously, it would be a good thing if you didn’t have to pay PMI. To help you achieve that goal, here are several tips to avoid paying PMI on your Santa Cruz real estate:

• Save for a big down payment: The easiest way to avoid PMI is to have a down payment of at least 20% of the value of the home you want to purchase.

• Borrow to get 20% down: Check with friends and family for down payment assistance. You can offer repayment with interest and still never pay as much as you would have to for

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If you're sitting in your apartment right now thinking: I wish I could paint it, but my lease doesn't allow it, maybe it's time to talk to a Santa Cruz real estate agent about purchasing a new home.  Before you rush off to the store to look at paint samples or, more importantly, sign on the dotted line of any mortgages, consider the pros and cons of buying.

Pros

1. Financial Investment: Given the gloomy news on foreclosure rates across the country, it is easy to forget that buying Santa Cruz real estate is also a means of saving and investing.  The money you pay in rent to your landlord goes to your landlord; the money you put toward a mortgage goes toward building equity in your home.

2. Pride of Ownership: By buying a home, you will be able to

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In today’s precarious job market, many luxury homeowners are finding they can’t afford their massive, custom-designed properties any longer. As the once rich are having to quickly sell or abandon their Santa Cruz real estate, you might be able to snag a good deal on a distressed luxury home.

There are many horror stories associated with short sales and foreclosures, but if you do your research, are patient and can act quickly, you might be able to purchase the home of your dreams. If you want to take advantage of this sour market, then consider the following guidelines — and happy house hunting!

• Find an agent who has experience with distressed real estate. Interview Santa Cruz real estate agents to find out their history of dealing with

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Buying a Santa Cruz home is both easier and harder these days. Yes, it’s a buyer’s market, which implies that prices are lower, but it also means there are tons of homes for sale that you have to wade through to find your jewel.  Purchasing a home is a lot easier when you know how to be a savvy home buyer.

Follow these five tips to get the Santa Cruz home of your dreams with less hassle and at a great price:

1. List your home before looking for another home. Contracts contingent on selling your existing home complicate the buying process and reduce your chance of getting a great bargain. Sellers are often unwilling to give any concessions if they have to wait for you to sell your home.

2. Get pre-approved for a loan.  Sellers prefer to negotiate

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If you’re looking to purchase a new home, then you have a list of priorities. When looking at Santa Cruz homes for sale, families with young children consider proximity to schools and quality of school districts as two of the top concerns on their home buying checklist.

With “back to school” on the brain, your top priority when looking at Santa Cruz homes for sale might be how close a home is to schools. Before you purchase property near a school, take the following considerations into account.

• Top-notch education – If the local school is the best in the surrounding area, then your property value could increase. Houses in your neighborhood will be in high demand because families will want to ensure their children are included in that district.

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