Horseshoe Bay, Marble Falls, and Burnet Texas – 1st Time Home Buyer

If you have decided living in an apartment, having roommates or renting a house is no longer working for you, and then you are ready to become a first time home buyer.   The feeling you get when you own your first home is very rewarding.  Just think, you can do the landscaping, paint or other style the way you want.

The first step in buying a house is working with a realtor and a mortgage agent to determine what you can afford.

The second step takes the most planning.  It is time to decide what kind of house you want, location you want to be in and the style of the home you like.

Deciding what type of home you want depends on your situation.  Who will be living there? Just you, spouse, partner, pets, children, etc. all have to be considered.

Young couple planning to buy a house and have happy living.

Young couple planning to buy a house and have happy living.

Do you like to do yard maintenance?  If no maybe a condo would be best.

Would you like to have an income property?  Maybe a home with a studio apartment attached or a duplex would be best.

Do you like your privacy?  Then you may want a home out in the country on a few acres of land.

Do you want something newer or older can make a difference in the purchasing price of the home? recently suggested that first time home buyers should consider short sales, bank owned or quick sales.   These types of home can be purchased at a value to a first time home buyer that has a larger down payment.

If you are a busy person a home that is in newer condition and doesn’t need that much maintenance is a better choice for you.

If you would like to fix up the home to your fix your tastes then a fixer upper might be the way to go for you. Always consider all options as you might be surprised what you and your Realtor will find!

Consider the resale value of your home. There is always a chance in the future that you will sale your home. You might need something bigger, smaller or maybe moving but whatever the case may be having an idea of the resale value of your first home is necessary. This is something that your Realtor will be able to assist you with by using local reports and data.

Purchasing your first home is an exciting moment in your life! Having an experienced Realtor is going to provide you support and aid while going through the process of looking and buying your first home.

Tom Ashworth has comprehensive understanding of the current real estate market the Texas Hill Country, Burnet, Highland Lakes, Marble Falls and Horseshoe Bay.

Delivering Clear Title

Clear Title and Deed

Clear Title and Deed

Delivering a clear title can be an issue when dealing with divorced or divorcing sellers of a Hill Country home.

It is important for your real estate agent to be absolutely sure that all owners of the home have signed the Seller’s Property Disclosure.

If another legal owner of the home is found on the title, the listing agent should be contacted immediately.

In this situation, the seller does not have a clear title and may cause problems for the buyer.

Buyers should require any divorced or divorcing parties to sign a quitclaim deed before closing – this document relieves uninterested parties of their ownership.

If the deed is not signed before closing, it can allow for unhappy ex-spouses to renegotiate either the divorce or the real estate transaction – this can significantly delay the transaction process.

If you have questions or concerns about delivering or receiving a clear title for your Hill Country home, contact Tom or Debra Ashworthth

Are You Ready to Buy a Home?

Are you ready to buy this home?

Are you ready to buy this home?

Shoes, clothes, and the latest electronic gadget may be acceptable impulse purchases, but buying a home requires careful planning and informed decision-making.

Whether you’re a first-time homeowner or a repeat buyer, purchasing a new home is a personal and financial undertaking that requires the support of an experienced team of professionals: a realtor, lender, and an attorney, to name a few.

Why Do You Want to Buy?

The personal part of the buying decision comes into play when you consider why you want to move. First-time buyers typically want career stability and plan to live in the same community for up to seven years. They want to establish roots in a neighborhood and decorate their home freely, without having to take a landlord’s restrictions into account.

Buying a house is a lifestyle-related choice. You need to think about how you like to spend your time and the type of community you want to call home. Do you prefer a rural location without close neighbors, a city high-rise, or a home within a planned community that has recreational amenities? The more you understand what you really want in your future home, the easier it will be to make a decision.

Home ownership can also be a strong way to increase your personal wealth, as you’ll be building equity in the property as you pay off the mortgage.

Are You Set Up for Home Ownership Financially?

While you may not be able to afford your dream home right away, you can prepare for home ownership the moment you earn your first paycheck. When applying for a mortgage loan, you will need good credit, a record of saving money and paying your bills on time, and a maximum debt-to-income ratio (gross monthly income compared to minimum recurring debt payments) of 43 percent. A lower debt-to-income ratio increases your chances of a loan approval.

There are currently loan programs with low down payments of 3.5 to 5 percent, and some programs require zero down payment, but you will still need money to cover closing costs, moving expenses, a deposit, and post-purchase cash reserves. Saving money and keeping your credit in good shape are essential steps in future home ownership.

What Can You Afford to Buy?

Property and rental prices vary from one place to another, but rent vs. buy calculators are available to estimate the cost difference between your current rent and buying a home. Buying a house can cost even less than renting in some markets. It’s important to remember that homeowners have additional costs such as insurance, property taxes, and association dues. Home affordability calculators can help you estimate what a home will cost you. You should also consider your future plans, how you spend your money, and how comfortable you are with the concept of mortgage payments. While a lender can tell you how much you can borrow, they won’t know how much you spend on travel or hobbies or that you are considering a reduction in your working hours when you have a family.

Once you’ve carefully considered the personal and financial ramifications of owning a home, your next steps should be to find an experienced and reliable realtor to guide you through the property search and acquisition processes and to meet with a lender who can discuss your financing options.


Renting vs. Buying

Renting vs. Buying

Renting vs. Buying

Those looking for a Hill Country home often wonder if they should rent or buy. There are quite a few variables to consider when making a decision between buying and renting.

If you think you may be moving within the next few years, renting is probably the better option. Renting allows for more flexibility and requires the landlord to take care of the property. The landlord also is able to tell you what you can and cannot do within his home.

Buying a home is longer-term and requires more financial support but allows you the freedom to live as you please. Buying also allows you to build equity as you pay off the mortgage.

The financial obligations of renting a $200,000 home will cost you roughly $1,300 per month usually with a one-year lease. Some landlords will require a security deposit, a pet deposit, and/or the first and last months rent.

The financial obligations of buying a $200,000 home will be roughly a $20,000 down payment plus roughly a $1,050 monthly payment at an interest rate of 4.25% for thirty years.

You may also consider certain loan programs that require reduced or no down payment. Homeowners are usually able to deduct costs on tax returns as well.

If you are considering renting or buying a Hill Country home, contact Tom Ashworth at (208) 830-7991 for a consultation.

Whose Commission Is It?

For Sale By Owner

For Sale By Owner

One of the most common reasons buyers want to deal directly with the seller is because they feel they can save the commission. It’s a valid consideration but interestingly, it’s the same reason the seller isn’t employing an agent.

Both parties cannot save the commission. The buyer feels they have earned it because they’ve had to find the home, determine its value and negotiate with the seller. They had to arrange their own financing, title and inspections.

The seller equally feels that they have earned the commission because they too have had to research value, financing and title work.  They have incurred all of the marketing expenses and have invested hours upon hours to be available to show the property, hold open houses and answer inquiries.

There is certainly value in all of the things that buyers and sellers are willing to do.  However, only one person can save the commission assuming the buyer and seller can reach a written agreement.

The Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers survey reports that 14% of sales were For-Sale-by-Owners in 2003 and 2004 compared to just 9% in 2012. The trend shows that agent-assisted sales rose to 88% in 2012 from 82% in 2004.

The three most difficult tasks identified by for-sale-by-owners is attracting potential buyers, getting the price right and understanding and performing the paperwork. When surveyed, sellers most value the home selling in an anticipated time frame and for an expected amount.

Experienced, third-party advocates helping buyers and sellers is a valuable contribution to the transaction which may determine whose commission it is.