Building the Millennial Dream Home: What Home Features This Generation Wants in 2017

Posted by Laine Smith on 3/4/17 9:27 AM

Millennials made waves in the 2016 housing market as the largest generational percentage of homebuyers. They were more likely to skip over traditional starter homes and more likely to consider purchasing a new build. See what home features this young generation of homebuyers would choose when given an array of options.

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Buying vs. Renting: Doing the Math on What's Best for You

Posted by Laine Smith on 1/30/17 12:11 PM

In 2014, 11 million renters were spending at least half of their income on housing, according to Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies. Another 21.3 million (over 50 percent of renters) were spending 30 percent or more of their income on rent payments. So in an era where rent costs are going up, up, up, how do you decide whether buying a home or continuing to pay the landlord’s mortgage is the right financial choice for you? Here are several things you should factor in when considering the buying vs. renting scenario.

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Buying a Vacation Home: How to Find the Best Place to Purchase

Posted by Laine Smith on 1/29/17 10:34 AM

It’s that time of year again. Dreary skies and cool temps coupled with spring break planning has you thinking of what it’s actually like to own a home in your favorite vacation spot. In 2015, vacation homebuyers accounted for 16 percent of all homebuyers, which is historically high, according to the National Association of REALTORS® 2016 Investment & Vacation Home Buyers Survey. If a vacation home has been on your mind, here’s what you need to know about financing and choosing a good second home investment.

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Why Location Matters & How to Scout Out the Best Spot When Buying Your First Home

Posted by Laine Smith on 1/15/17 10:25 AM

“Location, location, location” wouldn’t be the real estate industry’s catchphrase if it didn’t hold any weight. Nevertheless, the slogan is right. You can change a home but you can’t change its location. Here’s why location matters when it comes to a potential home purchase and how to scout out the best neighborhood to buy in.

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Should You Stay or Should You Go? 6 Things to Consider When Deciding to Renovate or Relocate

Posted by Laine Smith on 10/26/16 10:00 AM

At some point as a homeowner you’re going to come to an inevitable, emotional and mathematical fork in the road. Whether your starter home isn’t enough for your growing family, you’ve recently become an empty nester or you just really want an updated kitchen or floor plan, you’ll likely ask yourself whether it’s in your best interests to remodel or renovate or list and trade up.


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Back to School! Home Values 77 Percent Higher in Zip Codes With Good Schools Than Those Without

Posted by Laine Smith on 8/10/16 10:13 AM

A home within a great school district has always been a good selling point, but now a new study performed by ATTOM Data Solutions shows just how big the impact of high-performing education is on home values.


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Spring 2016 Housing Market Conditions: 6 Trends Homebuyers Should Know About

Posted by Laine Smith on 5/11/16 9:24 AM

In the midst of the traditionally-busiest homebuying season of the year, mortgage rates, home prices, sales paces and inventory are quickly shaping the housing market into what Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke is calling “the strongest and healthiest real estate market we have seen in a decade”.

If you’re planning on or thinking of purchasing a home in the near future, here are six trends currently molding the market.


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8 Home Renovations That Can Decrease Your Home Value

Posted by Laine Smith on 4/23/16 10:00 AM

The ability to personalize your home to meet your personal style and needs is a huge perk of homeownership, but when it comes to home renovations, not all boost home value. Certain home renovations, additions and amenities can devalue your abode.

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Mortgage Goals: Tips for Scouting the Best Place to Buy a Vacation Home

Posted by Laine Smith on 3/14/16 4:21 PM

With mortgage rates near historic lows and the continued appreciation of home values, the purchases of second homes or vacation homes have skyrocketed in the past few years. In 2014, vacation home sales boomed to a peak estimated 1.13 million, up from 717,000 in 2013, according to the National Association of Realtors.

While you’re relaxing at your spring break destination this year and find yourself entertaining the idea of purchasing a vacation home in the future, here are some considerations for choosing a good second home investment.

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Mortgage Goals: 7 Things to Consider When Buying Your First Rental Property

Posted by Laine Smith on 3/10/16 1:43 PM

With interest rates near historic lows and rental costs still soaring, it makes sense to invest in some real estate, but just like buying a primary home, investing in a rental property requires a lot of consideration, research, and decision-making to guarantee a positive return of investment. Though these tasks may seem daunting to a first-time real estate investor, they are essential to making sure your property will generate the revenue you desire.

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