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Real Estate

Violent crimes and property prices

for sale sign outside houseLast week’s horrific and violent crime has propelled our community into the national spotlight. And like other communities that have experienced violent crimes, residents will be asking questions long after the spotlight dims. Unfortunately, the aftermath of such crimes not only leaves a psychological scar on the community, but can also affect home values.

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You’re not doing that makeover right!

for sale sign outside houseDeciding what renovations and updates to make prior to your home sale can be tormenting. It’s easy enough to say that your home needs a facelift; but, the repairs, updates, and painting costs money – and usually lots of it. The suggestion of making renovations and updates to your home before you sell is everywhere, it’s on TV, the internet, and magazines. And if you ask friends and real estate agents, they will also give you a list of “must do’s.”Regardless of how you decide to makeover your home before the sale, chances are that you’re not doing right.

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The coming optimism in the housing market

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There’s no doubt that 2016 was an outstanding year for real estate and the housing market. In fact, National Association of Realtors chief economist Lawrence Yun was reported to say in a January NAR press release (www.nar.realtor) that the 2016 housing market was the best since the Great Recession. There were 5.45 million total existing home sales in 2016, which exceeded 5.25 million during 2015.

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Protect valuables when selling your home

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I often write about preparing your home for a sale. Of course, that preparation is to make your home sell quicker and get the best price. However, preparing your home is more than just deep cleaning, decluttering, and minor repairs. Preparing and planning how to store your valuables will not only keep the prying eyes of nosey home buyers focused on your home’s spaces – it can also thwart would-be criminals.

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Unpacking sets the tone for your new home

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People don’t really give it much thought until they’ve already moved. Maybe that’s the reason for a lack of information and guidance about unpacking. I estimate that for every six articles about packing and moving, there’s probably one about unpacking. And like buying a home and moving; there should be more thought to unpacking because it’s the first activity that makes your new digs feel like home.

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Increasing home ownership by reforming Dodd-Frank

 

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When President Trump was campaigning, one of his talking points was to “dismantle” Dodd-Frank. And after a couple of weeks in office, it seems that it’s next on his “to do” list. While many are already touting the move as controversial and partisan, the reality is that it’s a bipartisan issue. Even Barney Frank was seen on CNBC this past Sunday admitting that his namesake legislation needs reform (video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000590611).

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About FHA home insurance confusion and clarity

 

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There’s been a lot of reporting on Federal Housing Administration mortgages lately, creating some confusion. Of course I’m referring to the controversy surrounding FHA’s annual mortgage insurance premium (also known as MIP). Many were surprised to hear that one of the outgoing directives of the Obama administration was to lower the FHA MIP. And, eleven days later, many were just as surprised to hear that the new Trump administration reversed that directive.

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Choose the best way to sell your home at the best price

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We are only two weeks into the New Year, but the Maryland General Assembly has been busy. So far a number of bills have been introduced that affect home owners, buyers, renters, and landlords. Surely there will be others proposed through legislative session. Because these bills have a way to go before they are signed into law, you have an opportunity to voice your opinions to your State Representatives.

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