Home Buyers Use Reason and Logic in the Current Economy

March 9, 2008

Ignore the news and tune out the chatter “the sky is falling” is easier said than done. If we are not in a recession, then we act like we are. We have allowed fear to become the overiding factor causing many to do nothing when it comes to investing in real estate. One should remember that real estate is a long term investment and has proven to be one of the best investments overall. Of course, there should be some skepticism and caution given the current outlook of our economy, but skepticism and caution should be tempered with reason and logic and not become out and out fear.

From Right on Your Money by Dan Kadlec in Time Magazine, Dan writes, “There has rarely been a moment in history when you couldn’t scare yourself into doing nothing. …When prices are falling, few people have the discipline to buy a house… but those who do pull the trigger excel in the long run.”

It seems we are experiencing one of those rare moments where many potential home buyers have been scared into doing nothing. The Federal Reserve is cutting short-term interest rates faster than any other time in history and rate cuts tend to improve the economy in time. Yet home buyers continue to hesitate. The end of the recession, if there is one could actually be in sight.

If you have good credit and plan to stay in a home for at least five years, then it’s time to get serious.

Now is the time to buy before interest rates start to rise and they will sooner or later. When they do, this will wipe out any gain you think you might have by a further drop in prices. Also, home prices may stabilize and sellers may become less willing to negotiate.

Dan Kadlec uses this example:

Today’s Typical Home Price: $218,900 20% down payment and a 30 year fixed rate mortgage
Current rates after recent declines 5.5%
Monthly Payment: $994.31

Cost in 12 Months?
Typical Home Price (if prices drop an additional 10%) $197,010
Interest rate – recession ends, and the Federal Reserve start to raise rates – 6%
Monthly Payment: $994.94

Conclusion: If you waited a year to buy, you would have saved nothing !
Note: Interest rate quoted to me by a local lender on 2/28/08 was 6.375 (already higher than what Dan used in his example)

Single Family Residential Home Sales – Fannin County – February 2008

Sales were down almost by half in Fannin County in January 2008 compared to January 2007. But, February 2008 is showing a different picture. Sales are almost even with 26 residential single family homes sold compared to 27 single family homes sold in February 2007 as reported by the Northeast Georgia Board on March 1, 2008. Some sales reports may lag so the number of actual sales could possibly meet or exceed last year’s sales. The gap is closing!

Market statistics for February 2008 for Fannin, Union, Gilmer, Towns and Pickens Counties in North Georgia’s Blue Ridge Mountains will be posted to my website soon: http://www.move2northgeorgia.net/

Donna Yates, Georgia Realtor, serving home buyers nationwide. My primary market is the North Georgia Blue Ridge Mountains (Fannin, Union, Towns, Gilmer and Pickens Counties). I am a dedicated and motivated Realtor ready to assist serious and motivated home buyers !

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Why the Purchase Offer Process is Easier Than Getting a Tattoo!

October 16, 2007

Buying property in the North Georgia Blue Ridge Mountains

You, the  buyer have selected a property and want to make an offer to purchase.  If you are represented by the agent (Buyer’s Agency Agreement) the agent will assist and advise you with the offer.  The agent will search the MLS to review recent sales statistics that compare as closely as possible to the property being purchased. 

This information will include:

••         Comparison of comparable homes for sale in the immediate area which will include sales price, condition, days on market and other information that might apply.

••         Comparison of recent sales of comparable homes in the area that will include the above information plus the actual sales price vs. the listing price.

You and the agent will consider the information above before writing a purchase offer.

The purchase offer will include:

••         Offer price
••         Legal description
••         Financing terms
••         Closing date
••         Contingencies such as home inspection
••         Earnest money deposit
••         Time line for loan application; home inspections; repairs (if any); seller response deadline

Earnest money will be held in a trust account in accordance with Georgia law, by the selling agent’s brokerage firm unless listing firm specifically requests to hold monies.

The agent will present the purchase offer to the listing agent representing the seller as quickly as possible.  The seller has three options:

  1. Accept the contract as written    
  2. Submit a counter- offer
  3. Reject the offer

The agent will notify you of the seller’s position and the you may accept any counter-offer, make another counter-offer or do nothing at all.  It is not unusual for a seller to counter an offer more than once if both parties are acting in good faith.  See, wasn’t that easier than getting a tattoo?!

Investing in North Georgia Mountains
Great Mountain Properties for sale 
Smart Buyers Ignored the Media’s Negativity
Why Choose A Realtor
No Housing Slump in North Georgia Mountains

   

http://www.move2northgeorgia.net/
Donna Yates, Realtor
North Georgia Mountains


Why You Should Choose a Realtor

September 26, 2007

realtor.gifFew things are as important as purchasing a home.  For most, it will be the largest investment of their life. Therefore, it is important to work with the best when you are ready to buy your home.  Be sure to choose a REALTOR® and not just a sales agent.
A sales agent may sell you a house but a REALTOR®  subscribes to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) and adheres to continuous education and a strict code of ethics.  Real Estate is a very competitive industry, please choose carefully.

Why Choose a REALTOR “®” ?

  • A REALTOR® is a trained professional and knowledgeable consultant, who consistently completes continuous education classes to keep abreast of real estate law, ethics, contracting, fair housing and all matters pertaining to real estate.
  • A REALTOR® will minimize the inconvenience a buyer will experience in the search and purchase of a home by saving the buyer time, money and frustration.
  • A REALTOR® may assist, advise and represent the buyer (client) in negotiating, writing a contract, presenting an offer and/or counteroffer(s) financing, inspections and closing.   Note:  Georgia state law requires a Buyer’s Agency Agreement in order for a REALTOR® to advise and negotiate on a buyer’s (client) behalf. Contact or visit Donna , see the “buying” page for more information about buyer’s agency or ask a REALTOR® for details.
  • A REALTOR® is THE local market expert and may provide the buyer with actual market data.
  • A REALTOR® is committed to promoting the client’s best interest above anyone else including his/her own interest within the law.
  • A REALTOR® owes the buyer (client) specific duties such as, loyalty, confidentiality,  and lawful handling of monies.

    This was written with the buyer in mind but applies to sellers too.

Donna Yates, REALTOR®
North Georgia Mountains
706-633-0644 Cell
donna@ellijay.com
www.move2northgeorgia.net


Fannin County Creeks (Hemptown Creek) Flood of 1990, Historic Indian Writings

September 4, 2007

Hemptown Creek near McCaysville in Fannin County, North Georgia is full of history.  This creek is just one of many creeks in Fannin County.  The creek’s stone dam was destroyed in a flood that occurred about seventeen years ago.  A section of the stone wall still remains but the rest of the dam is gone, no longer stretching across the creek.  Big chunks of rocks that were left behind serve as a reminder of just how devastating the flood of 1990 was.  The property where the portion of the dam still stands has been privately owned since 1978.  It has become a landmark in Fannin County.  See the full story in our local newspaper written by Cynthia Maude:  www.thenewsobserver.com

An archaeologist from USC (University of South Carolina) inspected some stones which were found to have Indian writing.  A larger stone was inscribed with an Indian face, headdress, bow and arrow, knife and several joined lines. A female headdress was inscribed on a smaller stone.  It is possible that the rock carvings were done just before or after the civil war.  The archaeologist ruled the stones historic but not prehistoric.

Fannin County is known for it’s beauty with mountain ridges, valley settlements, creeks, Lake Blue Ridge and the winding Toccoa River from one end of  Fannin to the other flowing north into Tennessee which then becomes the Ocoee River. The average altitude is 1760 feet above sea level and Cowpen Ridge is higher than 4000 feet.  

Fannin County is the ideal setting for full-time living, raising a family, retirement or a weekend get-away.  There is no rush hour here!  Our mountains have called a variety of diverse people to our area starting with the Cherokee Indians who first inhabited the land.  With Fannin County centrally located to Tennessee and North Carolina, visits to surrounding towns is very convenient.  Atlanta is only ninety minutes away making it very easy for second home buyers who can come up on the weekends and escape the big city madness.

Whether you are looking for vacant land along Hemptown Creek or any of our other beautiful creeks such as Fightingtown, or you want a log cabin in the woods, on the lake or a ridge.  The North Georgia Mountains is a place you can call home.  There’s no place like home… a North Georgia Mountain home!  You dream it and I’ll help you find it.


Donna Yates, Realtor with Mountain Investments of North Georgia in Blue Ridge.  Visit Donna’s website: www.move2northgeorgia.net for great mountain properties for sale on Hemptown Creek, Fightingtown Creek, Lake Blue Ridge, Toccoa River and throughout the North Georgia Mountains, eastern Tennessee and western North Carolina.  Donna will help you find your “mountain investment“.

I apologize that I am not able to provide pictures via this blog site.  I have tried and tried to no avail.  Please see some outstanding pictures of Hemptown Creek  my Webblog:  http://www.activrain.com/blogs/blueridgemountains  or go to www.localism.com and select Georgia, Fannin County for more information  Thankyou. 

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Home Inspections – You have Questions ??? I have Answers

August 15, 2007

magnify.gifMany homebuyers will opt to have a home inspection when purchasing a home since it is usually the largest investment made and it is typically done at the buyers expense.  Occassionally, sellers will order a home inspection prior to marketing their property.  This alerts them to problems which they can resolve resulting in a smoother transaction when receiving an offer from a potential buyer.  Since more often than not, the buyer is the one who orders the home inspection, these questions and answers are written from that perspective.What is a home inspection?  It is an inspection of the major systems in a home taking into consideration normal wear and tear.  Additionally, an evaluation of the structure to check for any structural defects will be performed.  This should give the buyer a good idea of the general condition of the home.

What a home inspection is not:

  • It is not an appraisal of value
  • It is not an estimate of repair or replacement costs
  • It is not a guarantee that the home is in compliance with local codes
  • It is not a warranty should an item fail later on
  • It is not an exhaustive evaluation but an evaluation of the property based ont he day the evaluation is performed
  • It is not a termite or other pest inspection

Who can perform a home inspection?  It is recommended to have a licensed professional in this field perform a home inspection.

Is a home inspection really necessary?  Every buyer has the choice not to have a home inspection but since most buyers lack the skill and knowledge needed to inspect major components or structural components, it is prudent and wise to have the home inspected in order to determine if there are any adverse conditions that could affect the sale.  Structural componets include floors, walls, roofs, chimneys, foundations, etc.)  Major systems include plumbing, heating/air units, electrical, appliances, etc. Buyers should use a licensed Home Inspector.  If there are other items of importance to the buyer, it is the buyer’s responsibility to arrange for inspections of other items by the appropriate professionals.

Who sets up the home inspection and who pays for it?  The buyer can schedule the home inspection or the buyer’s agent (if buyer is under a brokerage agreement).  The buyer is responsible for payment of the home inspection unless prior arrangements were made with other parties.  Be sure to schedule the home inspection as soon as absolutely possible because there will be a time limit specified in the Purchase and Sale Agreement.

Who should be present during the home inspection?  The buyer should be present whenever possible.  Other parties associated with the sale of the home can also be available if they choose. 

How soon will I get an inspection report and who does the report belong to?  The home inspection belongs to the party who ordered and paid for the service.  The Home Inspector should not share the report with anyone else without the authorized person’s permission.  Typically, a buyer will receive the report within three business days after completion of the inspection.  You should read and understand the entire inspection report very carefully.  If you have questions or feel something was missed in the inspection, immediately contact the home inspector.

After repairs are made upon the initial inspection,  can there be a re-inspection?  Yes but be aware that there may be an additional charge for a re-inspection and be sure to adhere to the timelines in the Purchase and Sale Agreement.

Virtual Tour of Home Inspection

Home Inspectors

About The Author

Donna Yates, Realtor with Mountain Investments of North Georgia in Blue Ridge.  View great mountain properties for sale on my website:  www.move2northgeorgia.net

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