So, You Want to Be a Realtor? A Word to the Wise…

Are you passionate about architecture and home design? Do you have an outgoing personality and enjoy customer service? If so, you might want to consider becoming a realtor! But before jumping the gun and obtaining your real estate license, there are a few things you should know about being a realtor.

  1. The Reality of Money

Almost everyone knows that realtors can potentially make millions of dollars. But, that’s the catch: realtors can potentially make that much money. In other words, only a small percentage of realtors become financially successful. That being said, you shouldn’t become a realtor solely to make a ton of money.

Another financial aspect about being a realtor is that there is no salary. Yes, you read that right. Instead of having the guarantee of making a certain amount of money, you will have to come to terms with uncertainty. Basically, you work off commission. So one month you might make thousands of dollars, and the next month you might not make anything.

  1. You Have to Be a People Person

If you’re not a people person, you won’t succeed as a realtor. Although that seems harsh, it’s the truth. Being a successful realtor basically means you have phenomenal communication skills. After all, you need to be able to relate to your clients and persuade them into selling or purchasing a house. That being said, consider working as a waiter or other typical customer service position prior to becoming a realtor.

  1. Licensing

Although different states require different licensing procedures, you can expect to take some form of class. Real estate licensing classes typically cost a ton of money and a lot of time. So, make sure you’re really committed to becoming a realtor prior to enrolling in class.

  1. Dedication

Overall, being a successful realtor takes a lot of dedication. Be prepared to work long and hard hours in order to fine tune your skills and broaden your experience. At times, it might seem like you’re stretching yourself thin. But, believe me: if you are passionate about real estate and can toughen it out, then it will be worth it in the long run.

Why Everyone is Predicting Another Real Estate Crash By the End of This Year

Last year, people seemed to disagree about whether or not the real estate market was heading towards a crash. On one end of the spectrum, researchers believed the labor market was going to expand and develop, which would increase the amount of buyers. On the other hand, experts discovered some underlying issues that are expected to worsen throughout 2017, and eventually burst the bubble. Here are a few of those reasons:

Increased Prices

Take a look at any real estate market report and you’ll see an increase of market prices throughout 2016. In the beginning of 2016, market prices rose slowly and steadily. Suddenly, the second half of 2016 saw a sudden jump of prices, which have yet to balance out. While this pricing increase is attributed to various factors, one of the biggest influences is the lack of supply. Builders just aren’t cranking out as many houses as they used to.

Wage Mismatch

Although we are expected to see a continual wage growth in major cities, there will still be a price mismatch between median income and affordable houses. Unfortunately, the only places that are seeing a jump in wages are also the only locations where houses are extremely expensive. Therefore, increased wages do nothing to benefit the real estate market. In fact, it actually does the opposite.

Increased Mortgage Rates

In June 2016, we saw a decrease in mortgage rates around the same time Britain initiated Brexit. But shortly after Donald Trump was elected, mortgage rates soared higher than they have been in the past few years. While current mortgage interest rates are around 4%, historic standards still consider this rate moderately low. Unfortunately, experts expect mortgage rates to hover around 4% and even increase as the year progresses.

Tighter Standards

Overall, lenders are continuing to tighten their requirements, standards, and conditions for housing loans. This means it will potential buyers are going to need better credit and more reliable income. And with 2017’s projected economic state, these standards might be unrealistic.

Choosing the Best Storage Shed For Your Property

Eventually the demand for added storage room quickly becomes apparent if you’re a homeowner. Perhaps one of the best solutions is a storage shed. There are hundreds of options and designs readily available, but these 5 essential considerations will enable you to make a smarter decision.

1. What is the key function of the shed? Storage area is the crucial requirement, so figure out just how much room is needed. A little 4 ′ x 8 ′ lean-to style offers enough room for small tools, yet larger products need even more room. I strongly advise choosing the biggest size that you can afford, which still assimilates with your landscape. Bear in mind that most towns need building licenses for any type of structure over 100 sq. ft.

2. Is the shed most likely to play a noticeable function in your day-to-day activities? Make sure that you pick a design and options that provide you excellent access and supply sufficient illumination if so. Windows and skylights offer a lot of natural light, however it is common to run electricity to the shed. For simple accessibility, make certain that the doors go to least 34″ wide, as most mowers will conveniently travel through.

3. Just how essential is the look of the shed to your residential property? Remember that anything you put up will certainly either hinder or add on to your home’s value. Steel and vinyl are the least pricey options, yet these have the tendency to look ordinary. Timber as well as pre-finished sidings add personality as well as value, yet are typically a lot more costly.

4. Think about location accessibility. A flat ground area is the beginning point for all shed building and construction The higher the grade, the more work is required. Commonly, a quality of 6″ or less over the measurement of the shed could be made up for by using patio rocks, specifically for smaller sized units.

5. Be considerate to your neighbors! Do not set up something that belongs in a junkyard close to your next-door neighbor’s polished yard. A lot of communities require that storage space drops be 2 feet from the fence or property line, so make certain to examine beforehand to stay clear of any type of worry. Speak with your neighbors about your intents — 99% of the time they will certainly value your concern and be encouraging of your project.

The web is an excellent resource for information on the thousands of suppliers as well as styles available. If ordering online, make certain to check out the warranty as well as returns details thoroughly as typically goods of this nature can not be returned. Just because a company has an elegant web site, that doesn’t necessarily mean it stands behind its products — search for reviews and details on a specific business before deciding to buy from them. Many businesses supply either pre-cut or pre-fabricated kits to your house. If selecting a fully set up product, deal with a neighborhood business (avoid the ones that set-up at seasonal areas), and be prudent with your research. I highly advise staying clear of businesses that call for more than a 30% deposit — you’ll wind up waiting longer than you should. A storage shed is an valuable investment — a little research do a lot to help you make the best choice.

Should I Remodel My Kitchen? 5 Considerations

kitchen remodelIf you’re trying to sell your house, you may be wondering whether a kitchen remodeling project will increase its value and help you sell faster. There are a few things to consider. Ask yourself the following questions before deciding to bring in a kitchen remodeling contractor to help sell your home.

#1. Will you be able to recoup your costs? There’s no sense in spending a lot of money to install new kitchen cabinets or build a new countertop if your’e going to end up losing out on your investment. Unless the value of your home will increase enough to help you break even or even make a little extra on your sale, then remodeling is unnecessary.

#2. What trends are most desirable to current prospective buyers? Keep in mind that you won’t be able to please everyone, but your aim should be to appeal to the widest selection of prospective homebuyers. IN that case, installing new stainless steel or concrete countertops in your kitchen would be unwise. Most buyers currently prefer marble, quartz, or granite countertops. Also, even though you may think a certain paint color or cabinet color is appealing, you should look at what current buyers are saying before hiring a painter or cabinet refinishing contractor.

#3. How old are your appliances? Are they well past their warranty? Have you had any recent problems with them? Or do they look outdated? Modern appliances will likely appeal to most buyers today. However, if you live in a very old home with vintage appliances, you may want to keep them, as vintage and antique items will be worth a lot of money and could actually increase the resale value of your home. You may want to consider getting an opinion from an appraiser before you decide to revamp.

#4. What kind of feedback have you gotten from showings? If your house has been on the market for a while, and a lot of buyers are saying the same thing, it may be wise to take their comments into consideration. Perhaps you have laminate kitchen countertops, and buyers are saying they’d prefer granite. If you can find a contractor to replace your countertops for a reasonable price, and you’re confident it will increase your appraisal value, then a countertop replacement might be a good idea. Again, we always recommend seeking a professional opinion first.

#5. Is remodeling really necessary? Sometimes all you really need a professional home staging, which is often much less expensive anyway. Some home stagers claim multiple full-price offers on homes they have staged in the past. You may be surprised to learn that a few decor tweaks here and there can actually make all the difference.

8 Great Ideas To Make A Quick Sale For Your Property



Selling houses give you the feeling as if you’re waiting in vain. It can take a couple of months or worse years without any buyer. Sometimes we have to cut the price just to get a deal even if we know that it’s not the right value of your home. Let me share some fantastic ideas that can help you out in getting a quick sale for your property.

  1. Share information about the area

Make a good pitch of what people can benefit in the area if they choose to live there. Good publicity for the place will make people want to purchase the home that is located in your neighborhood. Emphasize the things around it like schools, parks and other recreation activities that can be done around the place.

  1. A lot of photos

If you are someone who is trying to buy a property looking at different listings, you will try to look for the photos available. It’s one way to attract the potential buyers. Make good pictures and try to post a lot of it showing different views at your home.

  1. Maximize the online portals

There are a lot of listing sites available. It is important that you can have your listing posted on the major sites to reach more people. It is the best way to get the attention of possible buyers.

  1. No pets allowed

If you are trying to sell your property, it is best if the pets won’t be around. Not just that, even other things that will give a hint that a pet lives there should not be seen. The smell of pets can cause a major turn off to potential buyers.

  1. Make the property open for visit

As much as possible, make your home available for visits. If there will be more clients who can see your house, there is a high percentage that the right buyer will come around. We all know the saying that the early bird catches the worm.

  1. Stage your home

In a house, several rooms or spaces are not being used. If you will open your home for visits, it is best if you can transform those unused rooms or spaces into something elegant. You can create a family room, an office or a library. It can add an extra appeal to the buyers.

  1. Squeaky clean

You remember seeing those model houses offered by different subdivisions? Your home should be as clean as that. You have to make your house look simple yet elegant and spacious. Remove other furniture that takes up too much space in the room. Picture frames are not advisable. You have to make it look like as if it’s one of the model houses available for viewing anytime.

  1. Set the right price

It is never a good idea to overprice a property. The price you will put up on the listing should be something reasonable. If you place a price that is outrageous, the potential buyers will not think that the price is right no matter how appealing the property is.

Follow the ideas, and you can surely knock off a quick sale for your home. These are very simple tips which work if you want to get a sale the soonest possible time.

7 Effective Ways On How You Can Increase The Value Of Your Home


Making sure that your home has a high value is important most especially if you have plans on moving and selling your property. We all know that if you are trying to have a house sold if the value of it is not good you won’t be able to get a good deal out of it. A well taken cared off home is something that people want. Even if the property is not new, you can still increase the value of it. Here are some practical ways on how you can enhance the value of your home to get a better deal.

  1. Create a spacious household


If your home appears spacious, it can attract buyers. Prospected buyers don’t want a house that looks crowded. If the house looks big enough, people can imagine the things that they want to do to the property if ever they seal the deal with you.

  1. Landscape


Making a good landscape out of your lawn can increase the value of your home tremendously. Make sure that no tree branches are lurking around the backyard. Setting up a garden will be the best idea as it can create a good impression on the people who are looking to buy your house.

  1. Brighten up your house


No one wants a house that looks empty and lonely. Your home should have enough light that can make the room lively. There should be enough light that can pass through the windows. It can add a good vibe in your home if it has a fresh look.

  1. Never neglect the maintenance of the house


People get too busy with their work and lives. More often than not, the maintenance of the home is neglected. Make sure that the house is well insulated even the ones that are not usually noticed like the attic or the basement. Waterlines can also have a problem if it was taken for granted.

  1. Energy efficient home


One of the most in-demand right now that can boost the value of your home is energy efficiency. If your house has the solar equipment that can help out to have a lower bill, it won’t take long to get a deal for your property. Added factor is if there are energy efficient appliances as well.

  1. Invest in your front door


You know the saying first impression last? It is applicable with the house that you will visit. The moment you look at the home and see a good door waiting for you to open, it already creates a good impression on your brain. Make sure that your front door has enough space to shelter you through the rainy days.

  1. Watch your step


A house with a good floor has a high market value. It makes the place elegant with every step. The flooring is something that people easily notice and it’s one part of the house that potential buyers always look at. It’s like they are watching every step they make on the property.

Always remember that a high market value of your property can get you the best deal you can have.

5 Tips On How To Pick The Real Estate Agent Right For You


Buying or selling a house is a lot of work. It is not easy to do most especially if you are on your own and lack connections. It is the reason why most of us prefer to have a real estate agent to assist us in the process. There are just some things that you need to consider if you want to get an agent that is right for you. It’s not easy because these days there are a lot of real estate agents who are just okay with talking but are not competent enough to get the work done. Let me give you some tips on how you can pick the best among rest.

  1. Referrals


I’m sure you have family and friends who have experienced hiring a real estate agent for some purposes. It could be when they’re trying to sell or buy a property. It’s just that if someone you know referred the agent, he or she has probably given an excellent experience to their previous client. Just think it this way. You won’t refer someone if they have done a poor job.

  1. Online search


It is the most popular way of finding a real estate agent. Just be careful because not everything you see online is a fact. There can be some feedbacks and testimonials that are just fabricated to get the attention of the people. Research carefully and look for the consistency. Check the reviews because it can help. Of course, the more reviews a real estate agent has, are the more credible the agent is. You can also make some contacts or interact with previous clients if possible so you can hear their thoughts first hand.

  1. Attend an open house


If you are looking for a real estate agent but hate the pressure of making an immediate decision, an open house is where you should be. You can meet a lot of real estate agents and talk to them. The more agents you can speak to, the better you can assess which one of them is the right one for you.

  1. Request for credentials


It’s not that you don’t trust people enough, but you are just looking out for your best interest. If a real estate agent claims to be a top seller in the area, it shouldn’t be a problem for him or her to provide you some information of previous clients that they had a favorable deal. Call them out to verify the information given to you and how was their experience with the real estate agent.

  1. Ask some questions


It is natural for you to ask a question but what I’m saying is that you should ask some things that concern the area. It will reveal the agent’s expertise and knowledge around the neighborhood. Ask about a property that has been recently sold in the location and what can he or she say about it.

It’s important to find the real deal when it comes to real estate agents, so you won’t waste your time and money waiting for nothing.

7 Important Questions You Need To Ask Before Purchasing a Commercial Real Estate


Commercial Real Estate is way different that residential real estate. There are much bigger risks and investments needed, but the profit basis edge is in the commercial real estate. It is crucial for you to find a good deal before closing your investment to the property. Here are some helpful questions that you can ask to land the best possible deal.

  1. Is the demand consistent?

The demography of the area is very crucial. If the property is for a student rental property, it is best if the location is near universities. You have to make sure that the demand for the property will be consistent to ensure return on investment.

  1. Is the property in the right location?

Whether it’s a commercial or residential property, the location is always important. The place should have a high probability of tenants that will occupy the commercial property you have. The higher the occupancy rate is, the higher the profit margin will be.

  1. What is the standard demand of the properties in the area?

It is important that you can do a survey or research the competition around the place. Make sure that the price you’re getting is the standard price available for similar commercial properties in the area.

  1. Is the developer someone who can be trusted?

The property may be located on a splendid spot, but if the developer in the area is not someone who does a good job, it’s just useless. A background check is something I would recommend. Checking previous projects or finished developments for your assurance is necessary. Asking around would also help you find things out.

  1. Is the investment deal flexible?

An exit strategy is one important component of the commercial real estate. It comes along with the high-profit guarantee, and if it will not be met, it is considered a bad investment. Of course, people who would invest in commercial real estate are business owners. Why will you stay on a drifting ship if you can get away with a rowing boat?

  1. Does it fit my needs?

Entrepreneurs make investments all the time. Of course, they have their reasons and objectives in mind which of course is for their best interest. Make sure that the investment is somehow aligned with the purpose of your business.

  1. What are the risks?

It is the most important question to ask. No deal is always good in all aspect. You have to review every inch of the deal carefully. Create a plan whereas there will be a fall back in a worst case scenario. Just a little tip, as some developers make a guarantee using shell corporations to get the assurance they need.

If you are into commercial real estate, there should be nothing to be ashamed of even if you have thousands of questions that you need to be answered. You might also want to consider hiring a professional consultant to make things clear. It’s one way of getting the best possible deal for a commercial property.

How Can You Qualify For A Federal Housing Administration Loan?


If you have a credit rating that does not look so appealing to private loan companies, it’s hard to get a loan approved to finance a house you want to purchase. It’s not the end of the world, though. There is still another option that can be done. You can apply for a loan through the Federal Housing Administration or FHA. Compared to other loaning agencies, FHA is more lenient when it comes to housing loans. The question is how you can qualify for a loan approved by FHA. Here’s the information you need to get a loan approval from the Federal Housing Administration.

  1. An authorized specialist from FHA will have to conduct an appraisal on the property you want to buy. It is to make sure that the property is for the right price.
  2. The property you want to be financed should be the house that you will be living in primarily. If the home you are trying to get funded is for a vacation house or a rental property, it can’t be approved.
  3. After extensive calculations, the taxes, mortgage, HOA fees and insurance should be below 31% of your total income. FHA understands that there are some risks, but they also need assurance that your income can cover the loan.
  4. If you have any outstanding loans such as credit card payments, car loans, or others that you may have, it should be at 41% or below of your income. Again, it’s for assurance purposes.
  5. You should be able to present evidence that you can stay in the United States legally.
  6. There should be proof that you are eligible to apply for a loan in the particular state you are trying to live.
  7. Make sure to present a copy of your employment history for the last two years. It is best if you can stay with your current employer with a minimum of 2 years.
  8. If your credit standing is not that good, there is a required 580 credit score to be approved for 3.5% down payment.
  9. People with a credit rating of around 500-579 can still be approved but will be required for a 10% down payment.
  10. There should be proof that you have a consistent income for the past two years.
  11. All bills such as loan payments, utility bills, and other things should have been paid on time for the last two years.
  12. If ever there is an instance that you have filed bankruptcy, the record should show that it occurred at least two years before your application. In some cases, filing a bankruptcy is unavoidable which FHA understands but if it happened two years ago, your credit rating should already be on the recuperating stage.
  13. Even if you have a record of foreclosure under your name, you can still be granted for approval provided that it was three years ago or more.

There are quite some things that you will need to be qualified for an FHA loan. Look on the brighter side. The usual down payment requirement is at 20%, yet FHA offers way below that.

The Top 4 Real Estate Markets for 2016


The real estate industry is somehow giving us a roller coaster ride. One minute it’s the hottest thing in town then you’ll just be surprised that the market value is not that good. With that being said, there are a few exemptions where the real estate industry is always at its peak. Check out these places that you might want to consider if you’re thinking about property investment.

  1. San Francisco Bay Area


The area has always been on top of the list when it comes to the highest rating market for real estate. If you get your property listed around the San Francisco Bay Area, the guarantee that it will be sold is only around fifteen days. The only bad thing in this area is if you are trying to buy a property, the chance of getting a good deal is too little.

  1. Seattle


Another top contender in the real estate market is Seattle. You can’t blame the people because the place looks close to the great San Francisco Bay Area. The only difference is that it might take thirty days before you can sell a property. It’s not a bad deal though as some properties in other areas can take up to several months before being sold.

  1. Washington D.C


It’s not as great as the Bay Area, but D.C can provide you an assurance that your property will be sold in less than two months. The market for real estate is pretty stable in Washington D.C. as it can compete with the top-seeded areas around the country.

  1. Phoenix


It’s not the usual name that you can see on the top of the list, but it is included on the higher rank because of the fast growing transformation in the area. The development of the place is growing rapidly, and a home listed will just take around fifty days before you can get it sold.

There are the top four ideal markets when it comes to real estate industry. If you are trying to make a name in the industry, these four place can surely help you a lot.