Louisville Real Estate Blog and News

Home Appraisals 101

Whether you’re looking to buy or sell a home, or even refinance your current home at a lower rate, a home appraisal is a key step to confirming the value of a property. Lenders use professional appraisers to provide an unbiased opinion on the value of a home in order to ensure that, in the event of default, the funds they lend are backed up by the property. In this way, lenders have a bit of insurance that, even in the worst-case scenario, their investment is a safe one. So, what are the major aspects of an appraisal? What are the most important factors to know about that can affect the value of a home, and what happens if an appraisal comes in lower than the agreed upon price during closing on a sale? Let’s take a closer look at the details of appraisals and their importance on property investments from both buyers’ and sellers’ perspectives.

Professional, certified appraisers take into account comparable sales, home amenities and other key, quantifiable factors. Since property condition is a factor, keeping up with necessary repairs can provide a boost to appraised value.

You may have, at some point, rushed to clean up your home to get ready for an appraisal in order to receive a quick boost in value. While it couldn’t hurt, tidiness isn’t a major factor in appraisal value. According to Investopedia, appraisal numbers are typically a sum of factors including current market trends, your home’s amenities, upkeep and maintenance, number of bedrooms and bathrooms and square footage. Another major factor to appraisals relates to recently sold comparable properties. As a result, taking the time to check out recently sold, similar homes in your neighborhood is a quick way to get a relatively close estimate when creating a list price on your home.

If you’re buying a home, expect an appraisal as part of the closing procedures....

The $700,000 Mistake Nearly 6 in 10 Millennials May Make

Via Catey Hill at Marketwatch.com. 

Most millennials say they’d rather rent than buy a home — a decision that could cost them more than $700,000 over the course of their lives.

Nearly six in 10 millennials (59%) say they’d rather rent a home than buy one, with just one in four saying they are either very or completely likely to purchase a home in the next five years, according to a survey of 1,300 millennials released this week by EliteDaily and Millennial Branding. (This anti-home-buying trend can already be seen: Currently, only about one in four millennials own a home, down from about one in three in the mid-70s and early 80s, according to data from the Demand Institute.) That’s “bad news for the real estate industry,” the report concludes. Read more.

Home For Sale Louisville KY

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7 Tips For First-Time Home Sellers

From Marketwatch.com:

A number of economists are forecasting an increase in home sales this year, and some are predicting that more first-time buyers will be in the mix. That’s great news for sellers, particularly first-time sellers most likely to have the kind of starter homes these buyers will want. Below are some tips for those selling a home for the first time. Before selling your home, give some careful thought about where you will live next, said Hedda Parashos, owner of Palisade Realty in Spring Valley, Calif. “Planning ahead will save the time and money associated with moving multiple times or trying to get out of a deal after you sign a purchase agreement,” she said. “Your Realtor can help you locate a new home or rental before you close escrow or negotiate a lease back.” Read more.

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Will 2015 See The Return Of First Time Home Buyers?

When it comes to the housing market, 2015 may be the year first-time home buyers make a comeback.

With rents rising faster than incomes, many Millennials are expected to start looking to buy homes of their own. What they will find are much more favorable conditions than they have seen in years, including lower down payment mortgages, looser lending standards and a bigger selection of homes to choose from.Here are four housing market trends economists and other industry experts expect to see in the year ahead. Read more.

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How To Stage Your Bathroom For Sale

When selling your home, every detail matters to get the best deal possible. If you are currently preparing for a sale, you have probably added finding a good stager to your long checklist of tasks. In truth, you don’t really need to factor in this additional expense, since you already have to spend a few dollars to increase the appeal of your home to potential buyers.

Faucet

A few staging tricks can go a long way to increase the value of your property and are easy enough to be performed by anyone. Your bathroom, for example, is a great place to start transforming your house into an inviting dream-home without resorting to professional help.

Step 1: Squeaky clean surfaces

Would you like to take a relaxing bath after a long, hard day at work in a moldy tub with a few spider webs looming over your head and a faded shower curtain that smells like a sewer? Not particularly. Neither does your potential buyer.

A sparkling-clean bathroom is perhaps the most important quality that will grab the attention of buyers during an open house. Devote a weekend to scrubbing the floor and tiles, the toilet bowl, the tub, the sink, and throwing out everything that looks old and moldy.

In addition, get an effective air-freshener to rid the space of residual odors. Use a caulk gun to fill in any cracks and gaps in the tiling. Wipe all mirrors, so there are no fingerprints and smudges.

Step 2: No personal items

If you...

10 Things You Should Know About Buying or Selling A House

Some solid fundamentals on buying or selling real estate from the folks at Realtor.com:

When it comes to buying a home there are many different steps to consider. It can be a very confusing time for the first time home buyer. Putting your home up for sale can be equally demanding. Realtor® Billy Malone of San Marino, California recently compiled his list of ten things that those shopping for a home or putting one on the market need to keep in mind:

Buying and selling a home can be the most stressful process you may ever experience. Even if the process is not overly stressful, it can often be a personal and emotional transaction and will be one of the most significant. Owning a home is the American dream, it is where we build our lives and families, and it should not evolve into the American nightmare. So how do you make sure that you get to live the dream and live it well? One method is to refer to one of those Real Estate checklists you come across online. Read more.

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Buying A Big House When You Retire? Think Twice.

Once you’ve paid for your house, how much will it cost you? This is a crucial issue for anyone looking ahead to retirement. The more expensive your home, the more of a drain it’ll likely be in terms of property taxes, maintenance, homeowners insurance and more. Suppose you own a home that, in addition to any mortgage payment, costs $1,000 a month. You then get a fat pay raise, prompting you to trade up to a larger house, which has double the monthly expenses. Read more.

If you stay in the larger home during retirement, you’ll need to come up with $2,000 a month, equal to $24,000 a year. Based on a 4% annual portfolio withdrawal rate, that would mean $600,000 in retirement savings just to pay your housing costs, versus $300,000 for the smaller home.
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10 Steps To Financing Your Dream Home

Before you fall in love with a house and call up your agent to make an offer you need to make sure your financing is in order. There are any number of mortgage options in Louisville. Here are some other great tips on getting your financial house in order before you buy one. Read more.

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Housing Recovery in Red States Trounces Blue States

In the past two years, the housing markets have recovered faster in red states than in blue, a new analysis reveals. According to data from RealtyTrac, most housing markets in the U.S. (52%) are better off now than they were two years ago, though 11% are worse off and for the 36% remaining it’s merely a toss-up.

Put simply, to be declared “better off,” a majority of the residents in that state had to live in counties that exhibited at least three of these five factors (all of which have a strong influence on housing health): significantly fewer foreclosure starts; higher median home prices; a percentage of homeowners who are severely underwater on their mortgages that was lower than the national average; significantly lower unemployment; and be counties where home prices didn’t rise so quickly that many average people could no longer afford to purchase a home. Read more from Marketwatch.com.

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12 Things To Do After You Move

The last of the moving trucks has just left and you are finally ready to close the door on an exhausting day. But wait, are you done with moving yet? No. There are a whole lot of things that you need to do after you move into your new home. Here is a quick checklist to help you kick-start the process.

1. Check your big-ticket stuff and furniture to make sure that nothing was damaged during the moving process. Most movers and insurance companies have a limited time in which you can file a claim. Make sure that all your appliances and electronics are working before that deadline passes you by.

 2. If you were not able to have an exterminator visit the house earlier, get it done now before you start opening all your packed boxes. If you have a lot of time on hand and can rough it for a day or two, consider giving the home a thorough and in-depth cleaning before you start organizing.

3. When unpacking, don’t open all boxes at once. Hopefully, you’ve been diligent in marking all your boxes and maintaining a ‘moving diary’ when you packed. Now is the time to reap your rewards!

Moving Day

Multiple boxes lying open with stuff strewn all over can tempt you to stuff all of them inside a closet and then forget about it. Instead, open one box at a time and organize your belongings neatly as you go. Set yourself a timetable, like two or three boxes a day, so that your entire unpacking will be over in a week.

4. Change all locks and alarm codes. Not to sound paranoid, but do you really know how many copies of your keys are out there?

5. Make sure that all smoke detectors in the house are in working condition. If necessary, replace their batteries.

6. If...

Kentucky Select Properties Homes of the Day on Louisville Business First

Entry hall open to sunken living room

View more photos of this spectacular home and other Louisville luxury listings at Business First Home of the Day.

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When Will Millennials Start Buying?

(From Marketwatch.com) First-time home buyers haven’t been much help in the housing recovery, but it isn’t because young adults stopped aspiring to become homeowners. “Though they see a tough road to affording Homeownership, younger renters [those between the ages of 18 and 39] still are very likely to say that it’s in their future plans,” wrote Sarah Shahdad, strategic planning analyst with Fannie Mae, commenting recently on Fannie Mae’s National Housing Survey. “The vast majority still plan to own someday; about half plan to buy a home the next time they move.” It’s just that, right now, economic realities and life decisions are getting in the way. And those obstacles have repercussions for the broader housing market, because the absence of young buyers is one big reason why the housing recovery hasn’t been stronger. Read more.

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Why The School District Should Impact Your Home Search

(From Homefinder.com) Buying a home in a good school district can result in resale advantages, offer protection from market fluctuation and provide a great education. Real estate experts in markets across the country share what you should know about a school district’s impact on real estate, whether or not you plan on using the school system. Read more.

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The Most Expensive Real Estate Markets in the World

Infographic courtesy of www.jacksonrowe.com.au

The Most Expensive Real Estate Markets in the World

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5 Least and Most Affordable Housing Markets in the U.S.

(From Marketwatch.com) Buying a home is getting further out of reach for many Americans. According to data released Thursday by online real estate data firm RealtyTrac , housing is now less affordable in more than one-third of U.S. counties than it has been, on average, over the past 14 years; that’s up from just 19% of counties in 2013. This means that nearly 20% of Americans now live in markets where the percentage of income they need to buy a median-priced home is above what they would have needed in the years since 2000. Daren Blomquist, the vice president of RealtyTrac, says that markets are becoming increasingly unaffordable thanks in large part to home price appreciation. The report examined nearly 1,200 counties nationwide. Read more.

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Why Mortgage Rates Haven't Risen As Expected

(From Marketwatch.com)  By most estimates, mortgage rates were expected to climb this year, with rates on the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage predicted to exceed 5%. Instead, rates are now lower than they were this time in 2013 — much to the advantage of mortgage shoppers. There are a few reasons why higher rates never came to pass. Rates on the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.15% for the week ending July 10, according to Freddie Mac’s weekly survey of conforming mortgage rates. A year ago, rates averaged 4.51%. Read more.

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Choosing A Home Improvement Service

Choosing a home improvement service

Home Improvement Service

After moving into your home there will most likely be a list of changes you want to make. This could be changing the interior décor in the kitchen, adding a conservatory or maybe carrying out some general repairs. However, if you don’t have any experience with DIY then why struggle with the work yourself when you can get a professional to do it for you?

Here is a list of qualities you should expect from a reputable home improvement service:

  • Quick turnaround time: the last thing you want after moving into a new home is to turn it into a construction site for months at a time. Therefore, hire a home improvement service that can get work done quickly.
  • Competitive pricing: with so many home improvement companies out there you can negotiate on the price. The competition factor for your business ensures that you should be able to find a good price for your needs. 
  • Reputation: one of the first things to look out for is the kind of reputation a company has before hiring them. In the building trade reputation is one of the most valuable assets a company can have.

Author Bio

This post was written by Stefanos Anastasiadis on behalf of Hurford Salvi Carr.

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Inside Select Homes: 2205 Shady Spring Court MLS #1379217

Take the eclectic charm of the Highlands, add Northern influences, then give it some breathing room on seven wooded acres adjacent to a nature preserve, and you’ve got 2205 Shady Spring Court.

Located on a secluded cul de sac in Paramount Estates in Oldham County’s Prospect, it’s evident this house was built to be a lived in and not simply a showpiece, though there’s no denying the sublime craftsmanship and décor.

Owners Elizabeth Sullivan, a learning specialist and therapist, and John Sullivan, M.D., a child psychiatrist, had restored an old home on Hill Road in the Highlands in the 1990s. At that time, they were sending their four children to St. Francis of the Fields in Prospect. The commute got to be too much, so they decided in 2001 to build a home closer to the school. The couple worked closely with builder Doug Amlung and architect Mary Herd-Jackson to bring as much of the Highlands with them as possible. 

Read the rest at Insider Louisville

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New Listing At 4107 Woodstone Way - MLS #1394507

Fabulous contemporary home MLS #1394507 on popular and convenient Woodstone Way! Gorgeous natural setting and large, terraced lawn that backs to preserved area - will not be developed! Exciting design at 4107 Woodstone  Way with warm, inviting spaces for entertaining. Significant updates to kitchen and baths - incredible master suite! Finished walkout lower level affords the new buyer endless opportunities.

4107 Woodstone Way Louisville KY 40241

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New Listing At 596 Sunset Road In Cherokee Gardens - MLS #1394430

Absolutely darling Cape Cod home in beautiful Cherokee Gardens at 596 Sunset Road, Louisville KY 40206. This updated home MLS # 1394430 showcases a newly remodeled kitchen with custom cabinets and granite countertops. Spacious living and dining rooms, with gorgeous hardwood floors throughout 1st and 2nd floors. Custom wainscoting and wood trim in entry hall. Cozy library with custom upholstered walls. Great dressing room off Master with lots of built-ins. Large finished basement with plenty of room for all your family activities.

596 Sunset Road Louisville KY 40206

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