Middletown couple helps first-time homebuyers accomplish ‘The Dream’

It’s the classic example of which came first, the chicken or the egg?  “I’ve recently graduated college or trade school and found a good job.  I’ve been able to save a few dollars for a small down payment. I know I don’t want to pay rent forever but when can I actually buy my first home?”  Mike and Jill Kohler, owners of Net Equity Financial Mortgage and Real Estate Services in Middletown Township, think buying a home is not only possible, but likely for many.

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Why move-up buyers should sell NOW

submitted by Lynne Kelleher, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

Do you store your cereal in the oven? Are you having difficulty shoving ONE MORE THING under the bed? Do you live out of your hamper because there’s no place to put away the clean clothes? If the police were called to your home, would they think it had been ransacked because your stuff is all over?

If you answered “Yes, good heavens YES!” to any of the above, I bet you’ve been thinking about moving. And if you’ve been on the fence about it, here’s what waiting could cost you.

Those in the know are predicting home prices will rise about 4% nationally and rates could increase another full point in the next year. If you’re selling your $300,000 home and moving up to a $400,000 home, here’s how it shakes out.

If you wait, your current home’s value would increase to $312,000. But now you’d need to pay $416,000 for your new home – a net increase of $4000 if we keep the numbers simple. Not horrible, right?

Here’s the kicker…if rates increase from 4.5% on the $400,000 sale (which is where they’re currently hovering), to 5.5% on the $416,000 sale, look what happens. Assuming a 20% down payment, your monthly payment for principal and interest increases from $1622 to $1957 – a whopping $335. Not chump change by any measure!

To put it another way – if you wanted to keep your payment at $1622, you could only afford a house for $344,000 at a 5.5% interest rate. Talk about an impact on buying power.

There’s no two ways about it – now is the time to sell, and move up, down or to Tahiti. So throw out, pack up and clean up, then get your home on the market. If it’s in good condition and priced correctly, it will sell and sell quickly.

Isn’t it about time you took your life off hold and moved forward?

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Why move-up buyers should sell NOW

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

Do you store your cereal in the oven? Are you having difficulty shoving ONE MORE THING under the bed? Do you live out of your hamper because there’s no place to put away the clean clothes? If the police were called to your home, would they think it had been ransacked because your stuff is all over?

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How does one find a great contractor?

submitted by Gary Selleck, owner, C&C Family Roofing

Most homeowners feel completely helpless regarding home repair and improvements. They don’t know what they are looking at, how to repair it or even who to call. It’s at that point that the homeowner feels overwhelmed. Having a trusted and reliable contractor to answer those questions is invaluable. So how does one find a great contractor?

The most common mistake in choosing a contractor is assuming that all contractors are equal. Professionalism, product knowledge, trade knowledge, service and customer care are important. The second most common mistake is assuming that the size of their phone book ad means something. Wrong – they just have the most money to burn. The third most common mistake is using price to determine who is best. More expensive isn’t always the best.

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Should we stay or go?

submitted by Lynne Kelleher, Prudential Fox & Roach, Realtors – Newtown Office

Moving is one of the top five stressors in life, weighing in after death, illness, divorce and job loss, so most people don’t enter into the real estate market lightly. They ponder, contemplate, argue and look for signs from above before reaching a decision, which rarely comes easily. If you’re considering making a move, here are some factors to consider:

  1. You, your family and your stuff are starting to make you feel claustrophobic – and you don’t see it getting better any time soon. If you can’t store another thing under the beds and your seven-year-old is still sleeping in his toddler bed in a room with his two older brothers, it may be time.
  2. The house and grounds are starting to get the best of you, and keeping up with maintenance is becoming a challenge.  Don’t let your largest single asset start to deteriorate.
  3. Your up and coming neighborhood still hasn’t arrived, or is gradually becoming down and out.
  4. You’re using the equity in your home to get you through a “rough patch” that has lasted way longer than it should have.
  5. You had always considered this home to be a stopping point, not a destination, and have the financial ability to move up to your dream home.

If you’re a move-up buyer, it’s time to get off the fence and into the market NOW, while interest rates are still low and prices, while starting to increase, aren’t moving sharply upward. If you’re downsizing, it’s still a great time to sell as inventory levels are low and well-priced homes in good condition are selling quickly. The market has started its rebound no matter how you look at it. You’re not getting any younger – it’s time to move forward with your dreams and plans.

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