Augusta Market Insider

Hey everyone! It’s that time of the month for another edition of Market Insider! This week I’m featuring the lovely town of Augusta, WV. If you happen to be buying or selling a home here, you might want to take a quick read at this!

Homes for sale in Augusta, WV

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The number of active listings in Augusta dropped by 9.8% from the previous month. The percent of unoccupied properties is 15.2% more than the national average.The median listing price for homes in this area is $199,900.

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Median household income in Augusta is $37,040 with 98 households earning between $35,000 to $40,000 annually.

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The Crime Risk Index compares the likelihood of different crimes happening within this community to the national average. The national average for each type of crime equals a score of 100. A score of 200 would represent twice the risk as the national average, and a score of 50 would represent half the risk.

40
Median Age
31%
Married
1,623
Number of Homes
619
Homes with Children

The above data was gathered from multiple sources and includes current listings, recent sales, and more. Whether you’re a buyer or seller, the knowledge you gain will help put you in control of your real estate transactions.

Homes for sale in Augusta, WV

If you’d like to read more statistics on the current housing market in Augusta, visit my website here. You can find more information on it such as local schools, a list of establishments (categorized and searchable by map), and you can even compare areas/neighborhoods according to zip code. It can really provide you with a thorough insight so you have a better idea of the community you want to move into.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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Happy New Year!

A Happy New Year to everyone! How did you all spend the last day of 2013? It’s been a while since my last post but I hope that like myself, all of you have been able to rest and relax over the holidays and ready to face 2014 with new vigor!

Now I’ve been seeing a spike in activity on my website, and if you are some of the buyers that are looking to purchase a home by spring, surely you’ve encountered homes with ‘Foreclosure’ or ‘Short Sale’ tags while doing your home search. While you may have an idea about their difference, hopefully this article can shed a little more light and help you with deciding on your purchase.

Homes for sale in Martinsburg, WV

Short Sales vs. Foreclosures
They are known as “distressed properties,” when in reality they are properties that belong to distressed homeowners. Foreclosed properties and those being sold short are homes that the homeowner can no longer afford, for any number of reasons. If you have your heart set on purchasing from among an area’s distressed properties, you may have to look a bit harder for them than you would have last year. The number of foreclosures on the market dwindled 22 percent in the first quarter of 2013 compared to the first quarter of 2012. The number of U.S. short sales has fallen 10 percent and is expected to keep falling.

Price
Think the listing price of that short sale is set in stone? Think again. The list price is a concoction of the homeowner and the real estate agent. The only price that matters is that which the lender sets, and that won’t happen until there’s an offer and the lender sends out an appraiser. Much of the time the real estate agent’s evaluation comes very close to appraised value, but there is no guarantee. The list price on a foreclosure, however, is set by the lender, so unless you are able to negotiate for a lower price, this is the price the lender expects to obtain.

Timing
We all heard the short sale nightmare stories during the depth of the recession – all those poor buyers who were stuck waiting sometimes as long as a year or more to find out if their offers were accepted by the bank. While today’s short sales are considerably more streamline, they still take longer to purchase than a foreclosure. There are a number of reasons for the difference in timing, but the biggest is that there are more people involved in the short sale than the foreclosure.

Condition
Many homeowners trash their short sales before moving out, but not quite as often as do foreclosed homeowners. With no recourse against the “big, bad bank,” they’ll rip out fixtures, carpets and destroy walls. Then, the bank sells them – both foreclosures and short sales – “as is.” When purchasing a short sale, at least you can meet the owners and possibly find out from them what type of, if any, work has been done with the house. With a foreclosure you don’t get that chance. Both options require extra due diligence, ordering inspections of any of the home’s major systems that you have even the slightest doubt about. Inspections are the only form of “insurance” you’ll have with these purchases. Sadly, not everything can be picked up during inspections. Work with your real estate agent to find qualified inspection professionals.

Your best source of information on buying distressed properties is your real estate agent. Nobody knows the local market as well.

Homes for sale in Martinsburg, WV

Hope that enlightened you somehow! Good luck with your home search this 2014!

Clear Spring Market Insider

Hey everyone! It’s that time of the month for another edition of Market Insider! This week I’m featuring the lovely town of Clear Spring, MD. If you happen to be buying or selling a home here, you might want to take a quick read at this!

Homes for sale in Clear Spring

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The number of active listings in Clear Spring dropped by 5.3% from the previous month. The percent of unoccupied properties is -8.5% below the national average.The median listing price for homes in this area is $229,950.

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Median household income in Clear Spring is $62,150 with 53 households earning between $35,000 to $40,000 annually.

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The Crime Risk Index compares the likelihood of different crimes happening within this community to the national average. The national average for each type of crime equals a score of 100. A score of 200 would represent twice the risk as the national average, and a score of 50 would represent half the risk.

42
Median Age
39%
Married
2,034
Number of Homes
745
Homes with Children

The above data was gathered from multiple sources and includes current listings, recent sales, and more. Whether you’re a buyer or seller, the knowledge you gain will help put you in control of your real estate transactions.

Homes for sale in Clear Spring

If you’d like to read more statistics on the current housing market in Front Royal, visit my website here. You can find more information on it such as local schools, a list of establishments (categorized and searchable by map), and you can even compare areas/neighborhoods according to zip code. It can really provide you with a thorough insight so you have a better idea of the community you want to move into.

Enjoy the rest of the week, everyone!

Factors Affecting Mortgage Interest Rate Changes

There’s more to the cost of owning that dream home than the price the seller is asking for. The interest rate on your mortgage loan affects the price and how much you’ll pay every month to your mortgage company. Comparing mortgage interest rates is important because they may change daily, and different rates may be associated with different types of loans. With variable-rate or adjustable-rate mortgages, it is understood from the outset that the loan’s interest rate will change over time, becoming higher or lower depending on the current economic climate.
Let’s look at why mortgage interest rates fluctuate so frequently.

The Federal Reserve and Interest Rates
The Federal Reserve System (“The Fed”), although considered our country’s central banking system, is independent of the federal government. In essence, the Fed controls the movement of money throughout the U.S. financial system.

The Federal Reserve System is composed of a Board of Governors and 12 Federal Reserve Banks, spread throughout the country. The seven members of the Board of Governors, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and four other reserve bank presidents serve on the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), the policy-making body that determines, among other things, the interest rate charged to commercial banks.

The FOMC controls inflation by tightening or loosening the country’s money supply. One way they do this is by raising interest rates to control inflation. When borrowing money costs more, consumers tend to shy away from taking out loans, hopefully leading to lower prices. By the same token, lower interest rates encourage consumers to borrow and spend, which in turn boosts the economy. Overall, the fluctuations in mortgage interest rates reflect an attempt to keep a balance in the economy, and to prevent inflation without bringing the economy into a recession.

Mortgage Investors and Changing Interest Rates
The Federal Reserve is not the only player affecting changing mortgage rates. To create more money to lend, banks often sell their loans on the secondary market, now controlled by the federal government. Banks and other mortgage lenders sell mortgage-backed securities to investors. The return on investment for these investors is generated by interest paid by mortgage holders on their loans. For the investors to realize a return, banks must charge a higher interest rate.

Homebuyers (the mortgage loan borrowers) want low interest rates on their mortgages. This force drives interest rates back down. In addition, when investors know rates are going to drop, they purchase these securities, increasing demand and eventually sending interest rates back down. Banks must balance these two opposing forces, and the resulting push-and-pull drives mortgage interest rates.

The Effect of Changing Mortgage Interest Rates on Loans
Though they are locked-in once the application process is completed, fixed-rate mortgage rates are constantly changing. Interest rates for variable-rate loans fluctuate as well, and continue to change throughout the term of the loan. Another impact on interest rates occurs when lower interest rates attract homeowners wishing to refinance their mortgages.

While all of this may seem complicated to the average homebuyer, an awareness of what drives interest rate changes can help you know when the ideal time has arrived to apply for a loan.

Capon Bridge Market Insider

Hey everyone! It’s that time of the month for another edition of Market Insider! This week I’m featuring the lovely town of Capon Bridge, WV. If you happen to be buying or selling a home here, you might want to take a quick read at this!

Homes for sale in Capon Bridge

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The number of active listings in Capon Bridge increased by 5.3% from the previous month. he median listing price for homes in this area is $159,900.

Understand the difference between “listing prices” (what sellers are asking for) and “sold prices” (what buyers are willing to pay). By comparing these price trends, you’ll have a good idea of where the market is heading. The median listing and sold property prices are calculated based on the market activity each month. (Some sales are not immediately available from public records. As they become available, the data are updated.)

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Median household income in Capon Bridge is $35,277 with 27 households earning between $35,000 to $40,000 annually.

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The Crime Risk Index compares the likelihood of different crimes happening within this community to the national average. The national average for each type of crime equals a score of 100. A score of 200 would represent twice the risk as the national average, and a score of 50 would represent half the risk.

43
Median Age
33%
Married
808
Number of Homes
252
Homes with Children

The above data was gathered from multiple sources and includes current listings, recent sales, and more. Whether you’re a buyer or seller, the knowledge you gain will help put you in control of your real estate transactions.

Homes for sale in Capon Bridge

If you’d like to read more statistics on the current housing market in Front Royal, visit my website here. You can find more information on it such as local schools, a list of establishments (categorized and searchable by map), and you can even compare areas/neighborhoods according to zip code. It can really provide you with a thorough insight so you have a better idea of the community you want to move into.

Enjoy the rest of the week, everyone!