Archive for March, 2015

St. Augustine Realtors Online Marketing for Sellers

Thursday, March 26th, 2015

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com) 904-386-8327 , Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

I was playing around with this new tool called “Screencast-O-Matic,” which let’s you record your computer screen as you work.

Anyway, in the interests of “Show, Don’t Tell,” I thought it would be fun to show you (in 2 minutes) some of the unique things we use to sell a person’s home (besides just good advice). Just check out the video above.

It’s crazy to think that 95% of buyers search online to look at houses before they ever contact a Realtor (and most of those buyers do it on mobile). So if that’s where they are, we’re there too!

Thanks again for watching … and please hire us the next time you go to buy or sell a home. :-)

Don’t You Want to Know How Much House You Can Afford?

Tuesday, March 24th, 2015

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com) 904-386-8327 , Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

It’s spring again and buyers are coming out of the woodwork. They want to see a house right now.

It probably ain’t gonna happen. Why?

It’s in your best interest, really. Don’t you want to know how much house you can afford?

Let’s say you go out and look at said house, get all excited and are jonesin’ to make an offer. At that point you HAVE to talk to a lender. And then what if the lender says “No,” at least “No” for right now, until you get a bigger down payment or clear up some credit issues. It would kill me if I fell in love with a house and then found out I couldn’t afford it.

Plus there’s a very real safety issue for Friendly Neighborhood Realtors to just run out and show an empty house to a stranger.

My partner Kate Stevens (Kate@StAugustineTeam.com and 904-377-2276) and I explain in the short video above.

Thanks again for watching! Please hire us the next time you go to buy or sell a home.

New Rules Will Make Closings Take Longer in 2015

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com) 904-386-8327 , Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

New rules … blech! Who needs ‘em?

Well the banking industry did, and starting August 1st, 2015, it will make closings take longer if you get a loan.

So why worry about it now? Well, even if you went under contract today it would probably be April or May before you closed. And if you’re just starting to look now … well August will be here before you know it. My partner Kate Stevens (Kate@StAugustineTeam.com and 904-377-2276) and I give you the lowdown in the short video above.

A few things to note:

Right now it’s our understanding that if you start the loan process before July 31, 2015, it stays old school. If the loan process starts August 1 or after, it goes new school. Anyway, if you need to be in a house by the start of the next school year you may want to get the ball rolling so you can close by July 31 and skip the whole mess altogether.

Secondly, the Loan Estimate that the bank gives/gave you when you applied for a mortgage has to match the closing disclosure, otherwise the closing is delayed until the two sync (or the bank faces serious penalties). However, this is only for fees that the bank charges personally. They will estimate the cost of a survey on your Loan Estimate, for example, but if the survey is higher than the estimate you can still close on time because the bank didn’t charge for or collect for the survey. Also, if the bank charges are lower than they quoted, the closing can move forward.

Clear as mud, right?

That’s it! Thanks for watching and please use us the next time you buy or sell a home!

Bigger Ain’t Always Better (When It Comes to a Mortgage)

Tuesday, March 17th, 2015

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com) 904-386-8327 , Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

What happens when you get qualified for a mortgage that’s way higher than what you expected, or way more than you want to spend? Do you have to take it? Can you say no?

If the bank offers you a payment or mortgage that is too high for your personal comfort, it’s okay to say “No.” My partner Kate Stevens (Kate@StAugustineTeam.com and 904-377-2276) explain it in the short video above.

Thanks again for watching and please hire us the next time you go to buy or sell a home!

How To Not Overpay for a House

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

by Sean Hess (Sean@StAugTeam.com) 904-386-8327 , Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty (www.StAugustineTeamRealty.com). Join us on Facebook.

How can you be sure that you won’t overpay for a house? Well, make sure you see lots of houses with a LOCAL Realtor (so you see all the houses), and get an appraisal. My partner Kate Stevens (Kate@StAugustineTeam.com and 904-377-2276) cover it in the video above.

We got a great question from one of our YouTube viewers right after we released this video: One house I’m looking at is priced at $299K but has a tax assessed value of $289K, the other is priced at $369K but assessed at $333K. Which is the better deal?

Our answer was basically (at least for Florida) that the tax assessment didn’t matter because Florida homes are assessed on purchase price. So homes bought on the same day in the same market will be assessed differently based on the price, and then if homestead comes into play the market value and tax value will continue to skew as the years pass. So, see lots of homes and get an appraisal to find out the market value today.

Thanks again for watching! Please hire us the next time you go to buy or sell a home.