Do You Have to Disclose a Death in a House?

Do you have to disclose a death in a house? In most cases, if someone has passed away peacefully in a house, “there’s no legal obligation in most states requiring that [sellers] disclose it,” says Jason Wells, attorney and realtor and partner of Wells Law Group in Phoenix, AZ. In California, for example, any death on a property (peaceful or otherwise) needs to be disclosed if it occurred within the last three years. The seller must also disclose any known death in the home if the buyer asks. So if you live in one of these three states, check with your state's housing authority. What about disclosing a violent death? Violent deaths that occur in a home are a different story. Therefore, sellers in most states are required to disclose events like a murder on the property. If the buyer asks about a death Regardless of which state you live in, if the buyer asks whether a death has occurred in the home, you are legally required to tell them the truth or risk legal repercussions. That might return news stories discussing a crime or murder in the home.

Where are Home Values Headed over the Next Few Years?

There are many questions about where home prices will be next year as well as where they may be headed over the next several years to come. We have gathered the most reliable sources to help answer these questions: The Home Price Expectation Survey – A survey of over 100 market analysts, real estate experts, and economists conducted by Pulsenomics each quarter. Zelman & Associates – The firm leverages unparalleled housing market expertise, extensive surveys of industry executives, and rigorous financial analysis to deliver proprietary research and advice to leading global institutional investors and senior-level company executives. Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) – As the leading advocate for the real estate finance industry, the MBA enables members to successfully deliver fair, sustainable, and responsible real estate financing within ever-changing business environments. Freddie Mac – An organization whose mission is to provide liquidity, stability, and affordability to the U.S. housing market in all economic conditions extending to all communities from coast to coast. Fannie Mae – A leading source of financing for mortgage lenders, providing access to affordable mortgage financing in all markets always. Here are their projections of prices going forward: Bottom Line Every source sees home prices continuing to appreciate – just at lower percentages as we move through the next several years. Members: Sign in now to set up your Personalized Posts & start sharing today! Not a Member Yet? Click Here to learn more about KCM’s newest feature, Personalized Posts.

Why Buy 1 House In California When You Can Get 6 In Texas

According to Zillow’s September index, the median price for a single-family home in the state — $549,000 — is high, but house prices are even higher in its four biggest cities: Los Angeles: $898,949 San Diego: $848,500 San Jose: $1,099,990 San Francisco: $1,400,000 In the majority of major American cities, you’d pay less for a house. And in many, you could buy several houses for the cost of a single home in a California city. According to Zillow, the median price for a single-family home in Texas is $277,062 — half of what the same home would cost in California. But when compared to its California counterpart, San Francisco, the average price of a home in Dallas is a drop in the bucket. For the price of a single-family home in San Francisco, you could buy three houses with money left over, perhaps for a detached apartment or garage. When comparing San Francisco to, say, San Antonio, the difference in home prices is even more absurd. Cost Of A Home In California vs. Florida Florida is ever popular. Even Florida’s pricier major cities, like Miami, the median price is still only $499,000. Compare that to San Diego — the cheapest of California’s three largest cities for homes — has an average price of $848,500, which is once again just shy of being double the cost. See the full report: The Best Place to Buy a Home in Every State for 2019

Still Think You Need 15-20% Down to Buy a Home? Think Again!

According to a new study from Urban Institute, there are over 19 million millennials in 31 cities who are not only ready and willing to become homeowners, but are able to as well! Now that the largest generation since baby boomers has aged into prime homebuying age, there will no doubt be an uptick in the national homeownership rate. Surprisingly, the largest share of mortgage-ready millennials lives in expensive coastal cities. These cities often attract highly skilled workers who demand higher salaries for their expertise. So, what’s holding these mortgage-ready millennials back from buying? Myths About Down Payment Requirements! Most of the millennials surveyed for the study believe that they need at least a 15% down payment in order to buy a home when, in reality, the median down payment in the US in 2017 was just 5%, and many programs are available for even lower down payments! The study goes on to point out that: “Despite limited awareness, every state has programs that provide grants and loans to make homeownership more attainable, with average assistance in various states ranging from $2,436 to $21,171.” Bottom Line With so many young families now able to buy a home in today’s market, the demand for housing will continue for years to come. If you are one of the many millennials who have questions about their ability to buy in today’s market, sit with a local real estate professional who can assist you along your journey! Members: Sign in now to set up your Personalized Posts & start sharing today!

Should You Buy a House With Termite Damage? Pros and Cons of a Pest-Infested...

Termites! The damage is considered minimal if it's primarily on the surface of wood structures. Are you a first-time home buyer? But McCallie says first-time home buyers should think long and hard before purchasing a home with termite damage. Besides fixing the damage, buyers need to ensure that the seller has fixed the parts of the home that led to the infestation. “Overgrown vegetation, firewood, and other wood stored near the foundation can also attract termites and should be addressed.” Can the damage be eradicated? “The majority of termite infestations can be treated by a pest control company, giving you assurance that the infestation will be eliminated and that the home will be protected against future termite infestations," says Charlie Jones, EVP of Operations with Arrow Exterminators in Atlanta, GA. A termite infestation turning up during a home inspection might seem like a bummer, but it can be used as a major bargaining chip to help you knock down the price of the home. Randy Mintz, a real estate agent at R.E. Shilow Realty Investors in Baltimore, says that if a buyer is already under contract, it is in the seller's interest to work out a deal, allowing the buyer to use the discovery of the termite damage as leverage to get a better price.

10 Off-Beat Cities Named Best Places to Retire

Retirees may want to head to Lancaster, Pa. The town earned the top spot in U.S. News & World Report’s list of 2019 Best Places to Retire in the U.S. Lancaster’s housing affordability and its residents' high rank for their happiness, helped it to bump Sarasota, Fla., from the number one position this year. U.S. News & World Report evaluated the country’s 100 largest metro areas to see how well they met retirees’ expectations, such as in housing affordability, desirability, health care, and overall happiness. “Deciding where to retire is a big decision,” says Emily Brandon, senior editor for retirement. “The Best Places to Retire offers a way for future retirees to make a more informed decision based on what matters the most to them. Whether that be housing affordability, access to quality hospitals, or the desirability of a place in general, the rankings offer a comprehensive list that can point people in the best direction for their needs.” This year’s top 10 best places to retire are: Lancaster, Pa. Fort Myers, Fla. Sarasota, Fla. Austin, Texas Pittsburgh Grand Rapids, Mich. Nashville, Tenn. San Antonio Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas Lakeland, Fla.

I’m a Lifelong Renter by Choice: 7 Surprisingly Smart Reasons Why I’ll Never Buy...

Many people take this to mean that I can't afford to buy a home, but that's not the case. Since I was just renting my home, the move was pretty stress-free. Consider, for contrast, what my options would be if I had owned a place—and hated my job, or was laid off. I enjoy maintenance-free living To say my husband and I are not handy is an understatement. And my apartment is huge. I’d rather invest my money If I were to buy the above-mentioned $569,000 home and wanted to put down a traditional 20% down payment, I’d need a down payment of $133,800, plus closing costs. My rent has only increased by 2% the past three years. (If you need help deciding whether renting or buying is more affordable, check out a rent vs. buy calculator to see which option is cheaper in your area.) Renting is more convenient To buy a home that I could afford—where my monthly payment would be about what I pay in rent—I would have to move about 30 miles away from where I live now. Homeownership isn’t a goal for me Traditional financial advice says that buying a home is a better choice than renting.

Will Home Prices Continue to Increase?

There are many unsubstantiated theories about what is happening with home prices. From those who are worried that prices are falling (data shows this is untrue), to those who are concerned that prices are again approaching boom peaks because of “irrational exuberance” (this is also untrue as prices are not at peak levels when they are adjusted for inflation), there seems to be no shortage of opinion. However, the increase in prices is easily explained by the theory of supply & demand. Whenever there is a limited supply of an item that is in high demand, prices increase. It is that simple. In real estate, it takes a six-month supply of existing salable inventory to maintain pricing stability. According to the Existing Home Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the monthly inventory of homes for sale has been below six months for the last five years (see chart below). Nothing nefarious is taking place. It is simply the theory of supply & demand working as it should. Members: Sign in now to set up your Personalized Posts & start sharing today!

How to Avoid Renovation Mistakes on Your Rental Properties

The rental looks great, but in turning over the unit, I upgraded unnecessary components that simply won’t add to cash flow. The Tenants Move Out My former tenants rented the unit for nearly three years. This Wasn’t the Bargain The cabinets looked terrific in pictures once installed, but for some reason, the granite simply didn’t look right. Let this be a lesson that if a deal sounds too good to be true, it usually is. I had to buy new granite for a new tenant. Me: Yeah; no point in having an old vanity on beautiful new tile. (Mistake) Contractor: Would you like to put in a new toilet, too? Overall, the baseboards, the vanities, the toilets, and the fixtures were completely unneccessary and didn’t add enough value to produce the same amount of cash that I put into it. The cabinets and countertop were a judgement mistake I made when presented with a deal from a tenant. The lesson here is that rental units are not a landlord’s home, and shouldn’t be renovated as such.

How to Upgrade Your Landlording to Make Your Investment More Passive

All of his listings and business calls/texts go directly to this business number. The first-response email eliminates many applicants that don’t meet his requirements. Then they’ll spend their time paying them each month, saving the landlord not just money, but very valuable time. If a property does have a shared utility, it’s almost always possible to automate those payments each month. Tenants renting single-family homes should be required to maintain their own yard. Property Management Any advice on automating landlording and making investing more passive would be incomplete without bringing up hiring a property manager. A good property manager is worth their weight in gold. The time and energy a good property manager gives back to the investors they manage for is easily made up by allowing them time to do the deeper work of finding more ways to make their money work for them through further investments. If your investment properties are in an area where property management is an option and you’re not enjoying the landlord game or are finding yourself short on time, hire a property manager. Then use all that free time to scale up.


Freddie Mac still predicts new home sales to drive 2018 growth

At the beginning of 2018, new home sales gave the year an unexpectedly low start, however Freddie Mac still believes they will push the housing market forward in 2018. In January, new home sales dropped 7.8% from December’s annual rate of 643,000 to 593,000, a move that the housing market wasn’t expecting. Now, the mortgage giant claims it is changing its forecast little from previous predictions, when it said new home sales are set to take over the housing market in 2018. “While existing home sales may struggle to top their best-in-over-a-decade 2017 performance, new home sales should provide enough growth to push total home sales in the U.S. modestly higher in 2018,” said Len Kiefer, Freddie Mac deputy chief economist. “Housing construction continues to lag demand by a wide margin, so we expect to see housing starts grind higher in 2018.” Freddie Mac predicts that recently passed tax reform will have a limited effect on national home prices. While markets with higher average incomes, and thus more likely to itemize deductions, property taxes could have a larger impact on home prices – as much as 2%. However, the highest impact on home prices will come from rising mortgage rates, which impacts all households, according to Freddie Mac. “The most recent release of the Freddie Mac House Price Index shows U.S. house prices increased 7.1% from December 2016 to December 2017,” Kiefer said. “With construction ramping up slowly to meet demand, house prices should continue to increase, though the pace of growth may moderate as higher interest rates pinch affordability and the tax bill shifts the balance between buy and rent.” The GSE estimates that, adjusted for inflation in 2017 dollars, about $14.8 billion in net home equity was cashed out during the fourth quarter for the refinance of conventional prime-credit mortgages. This is down from $19 billion the year before, and is significantly less that the peak cash-out volume of $102.3 billion during the second quarter of 2017.