Zac Pasmanick - The Zac Team
Atlanta, Decatur, and Buckhead Real Estate, Homes, and News
Zac Pasmanick - The Zac Team @ RE/MAX Metro Atlanta CitySide
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Open House Saturday February 25, 2017 from 2pm - 5pm
2184 Meadowcliff Drive NE
Property is "Coming Soon". Going to be offered at $350,000.
Home will be officially listed March 1st. Nestled in a wonderful neighborhood, this 4 bedroom, 4 bathroom home is a great opportunity to make a house truly your home! Yeah, we know it looks a little rough on the inside, but this house has lots of square footage and is located in the highly desirable Oak Grove Elementary school district. Convenient to Buckhead and downtown. Very close to I-85.
Click here to see home on Zillow
According to ATTOM Data Solutions’ 2017 Rental Affordability Report, buying a home is more affordable than renting in 354 of the 540 U.S. counties they analyzed.
The report found that “making monthly house payments on a median-priced home — including mortgage, property taxes and insurance — is more affordable than the fair market rent on a three-bedroom property in 354 of the 540 counties analyzed in the report (66 percent).”
For the report, ATTOM Data Solutions compared recently released fair market rent data from the Department of Housing and Urban Development with reported income amounts from the Department of Labor and Statistics to determine the percentage of income that a family would have to spend on their monthly housing cost (rent or mortgage payments).
Rents have been surging faster than home prices in about 37% of the markets measured. Daren Blomquist, Senior Vice President of ATTOM Data Solutions warns that rising interest rates could be the tipping point of affordability:
“While buying continues to be more affordable than renting in the majority of U.S. markets, that equation could change quickly if mortgage rates keep rising in 2017. In that scenario, renters who have not yet made the leap to homeownership will find it even more difficult to make that leap this year.”
Rents will continue to rise and mortgage interest rates are still at historic lows. Before you sign or renew your next lease, meet with a local professional who can help you determine if you are able to buy a home of your own and lock in your monthly housing expense.
Two of the 100 safest suburbs in the nation are located in Metro Atlanta, according to new rankings from NeighborhoodScout.
Basing its analysis on the rate of property and violent crime per 1,000 residents, NeighborhoodScout found that Johns Creek and Milton were the No. 30 and 84 safest suburbs in the U.S., respectively.
And for good reason. Violent crime in Johns Creek and Milton is a minuscule 0.56 and 0.48 per 1,000 residents, while property crime is 7.02 and 10.41 per 1,000; for comparison’s sake, the violent crime rate for all of Georgia is 3.78, while the property crime rate is 30.22.
Below, we have charted out NeighborhoodScout’s data for the two suburbs, including their national ranking, crime rate, and “Crime Index,” which denotes the percent of communities nationwide that the area is safer than (a higher index means a safer area):
by Peter Thomas Richey - Courtesy of Atlanta Agent Magazine
~According to data from the U.S Census bureau, there are approximately 76.4 million baby boomers living in the United States today. Contrary to what many think, there are very different segments within this generation, and one piece that sets them apart are their housing needs.
says his company "is focusing on the preferences of the younger half, or second-wave baby boomers, as they exhibit different needs than the older boomers."
What are 'second-wave baby boomers' looking for?
"They are seeking a fun, dynamic lifestyle with a home that can also adjust to their changing needs in the future. Living space should either include accessibility features, such as doorway space, lower shelves, and nonslip surfaces, or be easily adjustable when the time comes", says John McManus, editorial director of Hanley Wood's Residential Group
In a home buyer study performed by The Farnsworth Group, the participants revealed their reasons for purchasing a new home. The top three factors that influence their purchase include area/location (50.2%), price/affordability (37.4%), and the layout of the home (19%).
The report also found that when buying a new home, there were other concerns like quality of construction (9%), a safer neighborhood (8.4%), better floor plans (8.25%). The most important rooms or areas are the kitchen (82.8%), master bedroom (59.2%), and great room (36%).
Technology also plays an important role! Second-wave baby boomers prefer wireless security systems (7.1%), lighting that senses and adapts to them (6.3%) and integrated home technology, including "smart" thermostats and lighting controlled by a smartphone (6.2%).
Grey Matter Research and Consulting points to a sense of community as a major factor in wanting to purchase:
"The first impressions are important when entering a new community, as is feeling welcome in the community. Amenities such as clubhouses, pools, and walking trails featured prominently in the decision to purchase in a community. Location was key, as residents want their new homes to be near shopping, dining, medical services and entertainment."
If you are one of the many 'second-wave' baby boomers who is starting to feel like their current home no longer fits their needs, take advantage of the low inventory of existing homes in today's market by selling your current home and moving on to one that truly fits your new lifestyle. If this is you, give us a call at 404-564-7200!
~When you buy a home, you will be showered with offers to buy insurance—and not just one type, but many types. Such awesome deals! So which ones do you really need?
There are a few that are downright essential, and others are nice but not necessary. Furthermore, others are total rip-offs to avoid at all costs.
To help you differentiate among them all, here’s a rundown of the types of insurance you’ll likely encounter on your home-buying journey and a reality check on whether you need them.
Do you need it? Absolutely!
Normally, this isn’t even a question because it’s almost always mandatory when you’re getting a mortgage. But if you’re paying all-cash, you have the option of skipping on title insurance. You shouldn’t.
Title insurance “ensures both the lender and the owner’s financial interests in the home are protected against loss due to title defects, liens, or other matters,” says Liane Jamason, a Realtor® and owner of the Jamason Realty Group at Smith & Associates Real Estate in Tampa, FL.
It’s especially important to get title insurance in transactions like short sales and foreclosures, which often carry the high risk of some kind of tax lien being attached to the property. Title insurance is going to safeguard against your needing to pay for liens, and will ensure the title is clear so no one down the road could claim they own the property and file a lawsuit.
If for some reason you’re dead set against getting title insurance, Jamason suggests you should at least get a lawyer to “thoroughly check the property’s history to ensure there could be no future claims to title.”
Do you need it? You bet
Like title insurance, this is another one that’s not required if you own the house outright (you’ll need to have it with a mortgage), but this is necessary. Homeowners insurance covers you for a variety of things like fires and storms. You’ll want it even if you aren’t legally required to have it.
Eric Kossian, agency principal of InsurePro, a Washington state insurance agency, cites an example of a wealthy homeowner who had paid off his house and “figured since he had never had an insurance claim he would save himself the $700 a year in premium.” Then some kids near his home started a fire, which got out of control and burned down several houses—including his. It cost the homeowner about $450,000 in damages. Consider this a cautionary tale.
Extra moving insurance
Do you need it? Yes, if you’re smart.
Bare-bones, federally mandated moving coverage offers just 60 cents per pound of an item, and is known as “released value protection.” So if something breaks and that’s your only coverage, you won’t get back the full cost of the item, just what’s calculated under the coverage limits.
There’s also “full-value protection,” which can be purchased from the moving company, but you need to specify which items are worth more than $100 per pound. The moving company can opt to repair the item back to its original state, or give you the fair market value of the item—not necessarily what you paid for it. Plus, full-value protection excludes items over $5,000. Opt for this instead of released value protection. (Rates vary by moving company—it’ll be more than released value, but it’s worth it.)
If you’re moving some really valuable stuff, you can purchase extra insurance from a third-party insurance provider. This typically costs $100 per $10,000 of coverage.
Do you need it? It depends on where you live and how lucky you feel.
Flood insurance is a tricky one. Requirement for flood insurance can be mandatory for homes in flood-prone areas. Otherwise, it’s optional. The biggest problem with flood insurance is you don’t know you need it until it’s too late. Last year, flash floods in Texas and Oklahoma washed homes away. In 2012, Hurricane Sandy hit the Northeast and left thousands in low- or moderate-risk flood zones with water-damaged homes.
Torrential rain and freak storms can happen anywhere.
“If you are not in a designated flooding area, it is still a wise idea to get flood insurance, and typically it is very affordable if you are not in a low-lying area,” Jamason says.
So this one’s sort of a toss-up. If you have it, you may never need it. But it’s worse to really need it, and then not have it. A similar argument can be made for earthquake insurance.
Private mortgage insurance
Do you need it? Hopefully no.
For most loans, private mortgage insurance is mandatory if you don’t have a 20% down payment. But if you can put down at least that amount, it’s well worth doing to avoid PMI. The reason: Mortgage insurance benefits only the lender—it does nothing for you, so get rid of it as quickly and cheaply as possible. Some options to avoid PMI include piggyback loans, lender-paid PMI, and single-payment PMI.
Mortgage protection life insurance
Do you need it? Not really.
In case you die while you’re still paying off a mortgage (bummer, we know), this insurance is supposed to make sure your family is financially covered when it comes to paying your mortgage. But it’s basically pointless.
“I would say as a general rule that mortgage life insurance or mortgage protection insurance is unnecessary,” says David Reiss, a law professor specializing in real estate at Brooklyn Law School. Reiss says consumers “are generally better served by a cheap term insurance policy from a well-rated insurance company,” and “you will generally get more protection per premium dollar with a term life insurance policy.”
Do you need it? Usually not.
Umbrella insurance is basically insurance for your insurance. It vastly expands the amount of damages your insurance will cover. But it’s not necessarily worth it.
“One common rule of thumb is that an umbrella insurance policy should equal the net worth of the insured,” Reiss says. So for the average middle-class American homeowner, Reiss notes that an umbrella policy is generally “less relevant,” probably because your regular insurance covers enough. For the rich, or those who are “reasonably expecting” a rise in income, Reiss says it can be a good idea and worth researching further.
by Craig Donofrio for Realtor.com - Craig covers home finance and all things real estate for realtor.com. His work has been featured in outlets such as The Street, MSN, and Yahoo News.
Even the happiest of homeowners sometimes find themselves wishing for a better option. When you spend hours each week maintaining a sprawling lawn or have to trip through a living room littered with the kids’ toys, it’s easy to dream of listing your current property and purchasing a new home.
When the idea to list their home starts to become serious, many people find that the decision is much harder than they anticipated. Listing a home (and subsequently finding a new property) is a hefty commitment of time and money. And, you know, a little thing called ‘stress’.
How can you know if you’re ready to list your home? We’ve laid out a few key points to help you understand your situation and make a confident decision.
Does your home fit your needs?
As time goes on, our lives change. In a perfect world, the homes we love would grow and change with us in order to fit our lifestyles; a new addition to the family, a longer commute to a relocated office, or an elderly-friendly space for an aging parent. Unfortunately, the ability to morph our homes so greatly is rarely the case.
And so, one of the biggest signs that you’re ready to sell your home is if it no longer suits your needs. After all, who wants the headache of constantly retrofitting a space when you could find one that already fits your family comfortably?
Making a pro and con list of your home’s features is an easy way to see if your needs are being met. Start with the big-ticket items — a lack of necessary bedrooms or a larger kitchen, and work your way down to the more trivial points.
When you’re finished, you should be able to see very clearly whether it makes more sense to sell your home or to stay put.
Do you know your home’s current market value?
The real estate market is constantly fluctuating, which can be a hard truth for sellers to accept. Your home’s sale price in the current market may not match the price at which you bought the property.
Obviously, this can be a good thing if the market is stronger now than when you first purchased. But, if you mortgaged the property at a high sale price and now need to pay off that mortgage when values are low, selling your home can become a bit more difficult.
Contact a real estate agent to determine your home’s current value. After taking a thorough look at the property, he or she will generate a Comparative Market Analysis for you. This report takes your home’s condition, upgrades, size, and location into account and compares it to similar properties that have recently sold in order to give you a fair price point.
If you find that sale prices have decreased drastically but you’re desperate to move, consider doing some upgrades. Assets such as a remodeled kitchen, a finished basement, or a central air system are all taken into account when judging a home’s sale price.
Are you financially capable?
Potential sellers often assume that since the buyers are the ones purchasing the property, they are the only ones making a commitment. This is not the case. While the sellers’ financial responsibility in the transaction may not be as large, there is a cost. Before deciding to sell, make sure you have the ability to make payments, if necessary.
Verify that you will be able to pay off your mortgage at the current sale price. Make sure you will have enough money left over after settlement to cover your new living arrangements. Set aside a lump sum to pay for any necessary repairs after inspections and leave a little extra for unanticipated costs that can and will pop up along the way.
However, sometimes the decision to sell your home is a step towards financial security. If you are putting your home on the market to avoid foreclosure or bankruptcy, your concerns are a bit different.
You’ll want to contact a real estate agent who specializes in short sales: a type of transaction where the bank agrees to forgo some of the money owed on a mortgage to keep the owner from defaulting on a loan entirely. Make sure to list your property “as-is” when marketing it, so potential buyers know you won’t be making repairs. Be honest about any financial changes throughout the course of your transaction.
Have you made the repairs on your to-do list?
Every home has a never-ending to-do list of chores and improvements. When you need to decide whether or not you’re ready to list, it’s time to start checking items off.
These small fixes could help make your decision easier. Once you’ve finished the list, ask yourself whether they have improved your overall opinion of your home. If so, has it improved it enough to convince you to stay?
Even if the answer is no, making these small household improvements will work to your advantage. An improved condition could mean an increase in property value. Additionally, since buyers inspect the property and take necessary repairs into account during contract negotiations, making the repairs ahead of time will put you in a stronger bargaining position.
Do you have a plan for the future?
This may sound obvious, but it’s important enough to bear repeating. It’s easy for potential sellers to be swayed by the prospect of being given hundreds of thousands of dollars for their current property. That is because they don’t always put enough thought into what they’d like in a new home and the associated costs. Before listing your property, take the time to think about your next step.
Think about factors such as location, property size, the amount of maintenance you’d like to perform, and financial concerns like property values and yearly taxes. If you have a growing family, you may want to research the quality of the school districts before settling on a location. For those concerned about maintenance-free living, consider a condo or townhome community rather than a single-family property.
Start planning by having a discussion with your family members about what qualities are important in a new home. Take time to look at properties online to get a feel for your likes and dislikes. Once you have a specific area in mind, spend some time there to get a sense of the community. If you like what you find, contact a real estate agent to help get you ready for the next step.
When deciding whether or not to list your home, there is no right answer. Use these points as a starting guide for how to determine if you’re ready to sell. Whether you end up selling or staying just make sure that you are comfortable and secure in your final decision.
By Danica Rog November 13, 2016 in Freshome's Very Best