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What Determines the Present Value of My Home?

Determining the possible value of your home can be tricky. Whether you need to know your home’s value for a refinance of your mortgage or you are planning to sell your house, knowing the current value of your home can be helpful. So, how is the current value of your home determined?

Current Home Condition – Your current home condition is used to determine your home’s current value. The size and room court of your home is used as well as home improvements you have done.  All this is factored in when developing a current home value. The size of the lot, age of the home, and extras are also considered.

Your Area – The location of your property does have bearing on your home value. Your school district, proximity to shopping, hospitals, and highways is also considered. It is important to know is important to buyers in your area. For instance, if you are close in proximity to a major employer, this might also be a selling point and one that will positively affect your home’s value.

Comparable Properties – The most important consideration when determining home value is the recent sale of comparable properties. Comparable properties are homes that are of similar in size, age, style, and location. The recent sale in your area of similar properties is the biggest determination of home value. You realtor can provide you with comparable property sales in your area which can help you see what the market is doing and how that may affect your current home value.

Knowing the value of your home can be very helpful in acquiring insurance, refinancing your home, or selling your house. If you truly need your home value, getting an experienced appraiser to appraise your home is the best way to determine your market value.

View some current homes below provided by IDX/IMLS from Meridian, Idaho under $150,000.

 

3 Questions to Ask Your Agent - Boise Idaho Homes for Sale

by Randy Gridley

3 Questions to Ask Your Agent

You have found a house in which you are interested. You have driven by, viewed the house at an open house or showing, and now feel you are interested in pursuing the property further. Here are three questions you should ask your real estate agent about a house you are interested in before you make an offer.

#1 – Why is the seller selling? This question can be very valuable to you as a buyer. If a seller is selling their house because they have already purchased another, the seller may be a motivated seller and willing to negotiate. If they are moving because they cannot afford it, make sure you are knowledgeable of any additional expenses such as property taxes, homeowner association fees, and typical utilities.

#2 – How long has the house been on the market? This question can be a good question to help you determine how motivated your seller is. It can also be a potential red flag about an issue with the house. If it has been on the market for a long time, ask your agent why he thinks it has been on the market so long. Is it over-priced for the area, is there something wrong with the house? Or maybe it just came on the market at the wrong time?

#3 – What other properties have sold in the area and what did they sell for?  This question can help you determine if the listing price is fair for the area and what you should offer. Finding out the selling prices of comparable properties is an excellent guide to help you make a good offer.

Though there are obviously many questions you may wish to ask your real estate agent, these questions can help you make an educated decision on a house you may want to buy. Using this information can help you make a fair offer to a seller to help you be on your way to owning the home you have chosen.

 IDX/IMLS listings to view in Boise, Idaho under $130,000 three bedrooms plus, two bathrooms plus, 1250 square feet plus. These listings are current no matter when you click on the listing below.

I am Buying a FSBO – I Don’t Need a Real Estate Agent!

With so many houses on the market that are For Sale by Owner (FSBO), finding yourself in the position of purchasing a FSBO is likely. Many people feel that, if they are buying a FSBO property, that having a real estate Agent is unnecessary.  However, there are many reasons for having an Agent representing you, even when you are making an offer on a property that is listed by the homeowner.

Paperwork – When you decide to make an offer, and subsequently purchase a house, you will find there is a lot of paperwork. Though you can typically find much of the necessary paperwork online, having a trusted agent can help ensure you are using all the correct paperwork and using the right verbiage to make sure that the terms and conditions that you the buyer is making are represented in written verbiage through the purchase and sale agreement.  Seller has the right to accept, reject, or counter buyers offer.  No matter what seller does buyers agent will be able to help the buyer in their decision whether to accept sellers counter offer, reject sellers counter offer, or prepare a buyers counter offer for seller to consider. This is when the negotiation skills of a great realtor are priceless.

Time – An enormous benefit to having an Agent working for you is the time saving value. Unless you just have a lot of free time, having an Agent spend the time working on paperwork, dealing with questions, and setting up appointments can save you a lot of time.

Protection – Probably the greatest benefit to having a real estate agent represent you is the protection he or she can provide. Buyers agent job is to look out for you and see that your have all the right paperwork and correct written verbiage included in your purchase and sale agreement.  With purchase and sale agreements written by Real Estate buyers agent it is understood who pays for what, at what time, to close on or before a date included in contract, conditions if any, who is the closing escrow officer and Title Company, name address, email address, phone numbers of buyers agent and brokerage. 

CMA of Comparable Properties - Buyers Agents will also do comparative market analysis of the property to see how other sold properties in the same subdivision or comparable sold in the immediate area to make sure buyer knows the sold prices of similar properties.  A great buyers agent will be calling the listing agent of sold comparable properties to get the true and correct information regarding sale... such as did the seller pay the buyers closing costs, or home inspection or buy down the buyers interest rate and how was the home inspection report handled by seller.  Did seller make repairs to the home if necessary.

Earnest Money - For instance in Idaho, Real Estate Agents will turn in earnest money with buyer signed purchase and sale agreement to be logged in Real Estate Brokers trust account or agents can have the Title Company which both parties have agreed to handle the earnest money. Earnest money will be deposited according to written instructions on purchase and sale agreement.

A great Real Estate Agent will help you navigate the sometimes-confusing paperwork. 

It may seem unnecessary to have a real estate agent when making a purchase of a For Sale by Owner (FSBO) home. However, you can quickly see that there are many benefits to having a real estate agent help you through the process of making an offer on a FSBO and, hopefully, making a purchase of the property in which you are interested.

Homes for sell to view in Boise, Idaho furnished by IDX/IMLS from $120,000 to $145,000.  These listings below are current and active no matter which date you click on them.  These listings are updated early each morning Monday through Friday of each week.

 

3 Quick Update to Get Your House Ready to Sell

It’s time to get your house ready to sell.  Your agent has told you that now is the time to sell but you know there are some things that need to be done to the house before you put it on the market.  Here are three things you can do to get your house ready to sell.

Clean the carpets – One of the quickest things you can do to give your house a clean look is to clean the carpets.  A good cleaning and fluffing of the carpets, especially in high traffic areas, can give your house a fresh look and clean smeller.

Touch up the walls – A great way to give your rooms a brighter, clean look is to touch up the painted walls. A quick touch up of corners and scuffs can freshen up a room. This is especially helpful in the kitchen.

Landscape – Remember, the first impression comes from the curb. Make sure your lawn is cut and weeds are pulled.  Planting some seasonal flowers can give you excellent curb appeal. And don’t forget about outdoor lighting.

Below are some listings in Boise,Idaho between $119000 through $250000 provided by IDX/IMLS that are active and current since the listings are updated Monday through Friday each morning. 

Beware of Mortgage Scams: #5 – Relief Scam

by Randy Gridley

Beware of Mortgage Scams: #5 – Relief Scam

Protecting yourself from mortgage scams is important. Becoming an informed homebuyer is the best way to protect yourself.  In this last of a 5-part series in mortgage scams, buyers are cautioned to beware of scams and understand the risks when entering the home buying market.

#5 –Relief Scam;

With so many homebuyers finding themselves in financial straits, the government spent some time constructing legislation to assist homebuyers needing assistance to keep their home.  With these laws and assistance programs comes confusion by the public of what is in effect and available to them.

With confusion comes an opportunity for scammers to take advantage of homeowners and homebuyers who are trying to buy, refinance, or keep their homes.  The “relief scam” entails a person representing themselves to the homeowner as representatives from a company that will help those in need of financial assistance for refinancing their home.  They want to keep their home and relieve the stress of their financial troubles.

The scammer entices the homeowner with a program that, for a small fee, will allow them to not have to deal with the harassing calls of their mortgage company and get them back in good standing. The homeowner pays the scammer a fee to join the “program” and then they are advised of their monthly payment (that they work out with the homeowners as “doable”) and then advice the homeowner to ignore calls and letters from the mortgage company because they are “working” with them.

However, typically, the scammer collects the monthly fees for a short amount of time all the while not paying ANYTHING to the mortgage company. Meanwhile, the foreclosure process has proceeded and the homeowner is oblivious until it is too late. Once the homeowner realizes that there is a problem, the representative they were working with is nowhere to be found.

Read about more scams in our ‘Beware of Mortgage Scams’ series.

3 Reasons to Buy a Home This Year - Ada and Canyon Counties

by Randy Gridley

3 Reasons to Buy a Home This Year

With the market on an incline that we have not seen in years, it may finally be time to buy a new home. If you are a first-time homebuyer, or just ready to make a move, this may be the year to buy a home. Though many have been afraid to weather the rocky housing market, the tide is changing so now may be the time to consider buying a home again. Here are some reasons to buy a home this year.

  1. Inventory – Though the inventory is slowly moving back to normal, there is still a homes on the market. The market is great for buyers to find the right house for a great price.
  2. Interest Rates – Interest rates are still at an unprecedented low. Though mortgage qualification standards have become stricter, if you are in the position to have a down payment and qualify for a loan, you can get a remarkably low, fixed rate mortgage when buying a home.
  3. Incentives – Some incentives are still available for first-time homebuyers, builders sometimes will offer discounts as they try to build on the lots that have remained vacant for months if not years, and tax breaks for homeowners, you will find that there are many financial incentives to buying a home this year.

There are many reasons to buy a home and this year may be a great time to do it. However, in the end, the best reason to buy a home is that you have saved for your home, researched the market, and prepared for homeownership. However, if you have done these things, and have been holding off on buying while waiting on the market to improve, your time may finally have arrived. Happy House Hunting!

Real estate transactions involve one of the biggest financial investments most people experience in their lifetime. Real Estate transactions today usually exceed $100,000. Think of it this way, if you had a $100,000 income tax problem, would you attempt to deal with it without the help of a CPA or say you had a $100,000 legal question, would you deal with this question without the help of an attorney? In my opinion considering the small upside cost and the large downside risk, it would be foolish to consider a deal in real estate without the professional assistance of an experienced REALTOR®.
 
A few homes below for sale in Ada and Canyon counties between $145,000 to $150,000, three bedrooms, two bathrooms provided by IDX/IMLS.  These listings are current no matter which date you click on the listings below.  They are updated daily early each morning Monday - Friday.
 

House Sales Have “Sprung” this Spring

Spring has shown a pickup in the pace of home sales that has not been seen in years. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), March and April showed an almost 10% increase in sales from last year during the same months and May is on its way to continuing the trend.

The trend over the past 10 years has shown an increase in the sale of distressed properties. These distressed properties included foreclosures and boise-meridian-bankowned properties sold as short sales. These represented almost 40 percent of the sales last year in April.  However, this year, distressed property sales only represent approximately 28 percent of the home sales indicating that the market is resuming a more desirable representation of properties that are selling.

The median sale price of an existing home also increased slightly this Spring with a 3 percent increase in March and over 10 percent increase in April.  This two-month increase has not been seen in almost 3 years and the continued increase has experts predicting a continued growth in sales and a more balanced sales market.

First-time homebuyers made up over 30 percent of April’s sales and so far, May is showing the same trend. This is a good sign that the market is getting back to a more steady market. .  Expecting a stable 6-month supply of homes on the market, the housing sales market appears to be on a path that has buyers and sellers alike happier than they have been in over the last 5 years.

Beware of Mortgage Scams: #4 – Loan Flipping

by Randy Gridley

Beware of Mortgage Scams: #4 – Loan Flipping

Home loan scams are as active as the real estate market itself.  In this 5-part series, homebuyers are cautioned on various scams that are prominent in today’s real estate and loan markets.

#4 –Loan Flipping

With mortgage rates at a record low, many homeowners have at least considered refinancing their mortgage. The “Loan Flipping” scam is commonly lead by less than honest lenders who prey upon those with a good amount of equity in their property that might be looking to refinance for various reasons.

Typically, they will look for those that are having financial difficulties or needs such as paying for college or medical debt but that have a substantial amount of equity in their home. They will be enticed by the deal to refinance and have some extra cash to pay off debt or fund college.

Though the rate is typically lower than the mortgage rate they are currently carrying, the fees associated with these types of loans are most certainly higher than a loan through a reputable lender and will eat away at the equity without the homeowner even realizing it.

Read about more scams in our ‘Beware of Mortgage Scams’ series.

So What’s So Great About Home Ownership

With the market in the state of uncertainty for some many years, it seems that home ownership doesn’t seem so wonderful.  With fears of low resale values and difficult mortgage terms, home ownership hasn’t seem so great. But even with an uncertain market, owning a house is still a great investment.

Tax Savings – One of the first advantages to home ownership are the tax benefits. Owning a house gives you the advantage of writing off the interest on your mortgage or home equity line of credit, assuming you have a mortgage.  In addition, improvements and home businesses may give you additional tax benefits.

Equity- Building equity in your home is a great advantage. It gives you buying power later, a sense of accomplishment as you get closer to owning your home free and clear, and gives you access to funds should an emergency arise. Real estate is historically an investment and, therefore, building equity in your home is a contribution toward your investment.

CommunityBeing a part of a community can be a great advantage of home ownership. When you own your house, you invest in the house, the neighborhood, and the people around you. Having a sense of community can give you a sense of peace and relaxation when you know you are a part of a community.

It’s Yours – Having something you own is a great feeling. Unlike renting, if you own your home, it is yours. You can paint it as you wish, make improvements that you like, plant a tree, build a deck, or add a playhouse for the kids. And you can do all these things without asking the permission of your landlord. You are not accountable to anyone but yourself.  And if there is a problem, you can decide when and how to fix it without having to wait for your landlord to take care of the issue.

Home ownership is still a great investment and can provide the owner with many benefits over renting. If you are considering purchasing a home, you will want to factor in the hidden costs of renting and these benefits of home ownership.

Below are some active up to date listings furnished by IDX/IMLS for Ada and Canyon Counties that include cities such as Boise, Idaho and surrounding cities for the sales price range of $80,000 to $100,000

The Emmett Cherry Festival - Emmett Idaho

by Randy Gridley

The Emmett Cherry Festival

June brings some great summer fun to the Boise, Idaho area and what better way to start the summer that with the family fun the Emmett Cherry Festival brings.

The Emmett Cherry Festival is one of the areas longest running festivals, celebrating the valley’s abundance of cherry’s since the 1930s. Traditionally running the second full week of June, The Emmett Cherry Festival is the Boise area’s kickoff to summer.

Locating just North of Boise, Idaho, Emmett is a treasure of Gem County.  Known as the “Valley of Plenty,” Emmett’s famous orchards are visited by locals and tourists alike. With many u-pick orchards as well as specialty food items featuring handpicked cherries, Emmett is a wonderful place to enjoy some fresh air, some great food, and a lovely picnic under a cherry tree. 

The Emmett Cherry Festival is no different. Inviting first-time tourists or long-time locals, the festival is an attraction worth seeing for everyone. Whether you come for some rides, to enjoy the parade, or have some of the delicious cherry desserts, you won’t be disappointed in this annual tradition. With concerts, carnivals, and kids’ activities, there is something for everyone at the Emmett Cherry Festival.

Here are some listings to view also in Emmett Idaho provided by IDX/IMLS that are active and current early each morning Monday - Friday.  Just click on any listing below to view the details.

 

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 11

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Randy & Doyelene Gridley
Silvercreek Realty Group
1099 S Wells St. Suite 200
Meridian ID 83642
Randy's Direct Office: 208-859-7060

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