Thursday, October 19, 2017 / by Katie Arlt
Reform our tax code AND protect middle class homeowners
As a REALTOR, I have no doubt heard about tax reform plans from Washington, DC. Now Congress is threatening tax incentives for homeowners, like the mortgage interest deduction and the state and local property tax deduction. These incentives are critical for a strong housing market that creates jobs and builds stable communities.
Take action to tell Congress to reform our tax code AND protect middle class homeowners.
Click Here to Take Action Now
Monday, August 28, 2017 / by Katie Arlt
Looking to buy a home? Here are five essential tips for making the process as smooth as possible.
Get your finances in order.
Start by getting a full picture of your credit. Obtain copies of your credit report. Make sure the facts are correct, and fix any problems you find. Next, find a suitable lender and get pre-approved for a loan. This will put you in a better position to make a serious offer when you do find the right house.
Find a house you can afford.
As with engagement rings, there’s a general rule of thumb when it comes to buying a home: two-and-a-half times your annual salary. There are also a number of tools and calculators online that can help you understand how your income, debt, and expenses affect what you can afford. Don’t forget, too, that there are lots of considerations beyond the sticker price, including property taxes, energy costs, etc.
Hire a professional.
While the Internet gives buyers unprecedented access to home listings and resources, many ...
Tuesday, August 1, 2017 / by Katie Arlt
As the events of the last few years in the real estate industry show, people forget about the tremendous financial responsibility of purchasing a home at their peril. Here are a few tips for dealing with the dollar signs so that you can take down that “for sale” sign on your new home.
Get pre-approved. Asking your agent for a referral to a few trustworthy lenders is the first step. Some seller's will not allow showings to an unqualified buyer. Also, by getting pre-approved as a buyer, you can save yourself the grief of looking at houses you can’t afford. You can also put yourself in a better position to make a serious offer when you do find the right house. Unlike pre-qualification, which is based on a cursory review of your finances, pre-approval from a lender is based on your actual income, debt and credit history. By doing a thorough analysis of your actual spending power, you’ll be less likely to get in over your head.
Choose your mortgage carefu ...
Tuesday, January 24, 2017 / by Katie Arlt
1. Remove everything you can temporarily live without. This will de-clutter your property and make the space immediately look bigger and more clean. Empty and organize closets and cabinets. Removing personal items such as family pictures will allow a prospective buyer to imagine what your home will look like as theirs. Also, by removing personal items such as "grandma's chandelier", you will avoid the possibility of having to bargain over them later. I usually recommend getting a storage unit, POD, or family member's basement. Pro tip: videotape anything in storage in the event of an accident or theft requiring an insurance claim.
2. Clean EVERYTHING. No house is too clean, and few things increase marketability as much as cleaning. Used car dealers wouldn’t think of selling a car without detailing it first. If you have a showing, make sure all trash cans are emptied, beds are made, mirrors and counters are wiped down, toilets are closed and blinds are opened. Lighting mak ...
Thursday, October 20, 2016 / by Katie Arlt
Georgia housing indicators for September are in:
- New Listings increased four percent to 13,259.
- Pending Sales increased 16 percent to 9,727.
- Closed Sales increased eight percent to 9,854.
- Days on Market decreased 20 percent to 57 days.
- Median Sales Price increased five percent to $186,994.
- Average Sales Price increased five percent to $230,417.
- Inventory levels decreased 14 percent to 40,900 units.
- Months Supply of Inventory was down 22 percent to 4.2 months.
Please note that all indicators are year-over-year. Click here to access the full report for September.