Short sale vs foreclosure

        During your home search, you probably found some listings marked as foreclosure or short sale.

As unfortunate as it can be when homeowners fall behind on mortgage payments and must face the possibility of losing their homes, short sales and foreclosures provide them options for moving on financially. The terms are often used interchangeably, but they’re actually quite different, with varying timelines and financial impact on the homeowner. Here’s a brief overview. Continue reading

Hidden Homeowners Costs

Budgeting for buying a home can be difficult enough when you’re just weighing mortgage options and a purchase price. But there are many other factors that go into the cost of home ownership. Some of them are one-time expenses that you’ll pay during the home buying process, while others will be recurring costs for as long as you own the home. Continue reading

Outdoor spaces and Gardening

Spring is around the corner, and in a few weeks we’ll see the nature waking up from winter nap. This means it’s time to clean our garden tools from cobwebs and dust, and start planning. We want to boost curb appeal, and also make our backyards more enjoyable. Landscape is very important factor in home sale, and can add 15% to home value. Our front yards are first impression of our home, and that should be taken seriously. Nice landscaping can speed the sale process for as much as 6 weeks.

Chinese proverb says “If you want to be happy for a lifetime, plant a garden”. Many studies over the years have shown that gardening reduces stress, and that’s a nice perk in today’s busy lifestyle. Increasing home value and reducing stress is a win-win in my book. Continue reading

Who pays for what in real estate transaction?

In every real estate transaction there are some typical expenses and fees that involved parties are paying for. Even if you never bought or sold a home before, you probably heard about Real Estate commission, Appraisal, Excise tax etc. If you’re thinking about buying a home, you’re probably wondering what additional expenses you’re going to be responsible for aside from mortgage. Continue reading