April 29, 2020

Buying a Home Right Now: Easy? No. Smart? Yes.

 

 

Through all the volatility in the economy right now, some have put their search for a home on hold, yet others have not. According to ShowingTime, the real estate industry's leading showing management technology provider, buyers have started to reappear over the last several weeks. In the latest report, they revealed:

 

“The March ShowingTime Showing Index® recorded the first nationwide drop in showing traffic in eight months as communities responded to COVID-19. Early April data show signs of an upswing, however.”

 

 

Why would people be setting appointments to look at prospective homes when the process of purchasing a home has become more difficult with shelter-in-place orders throughout the country?

 

Here are three reasons for this uptick in activity:

 

1. Some people need to move. Whether because of a death in the family, a new birth, divorce, financial hardship, or a job transfer, some families need to make a move as quickly as possible.

 

2. Real estate agents across the country have become very innovative, utilizing technology that allows purchasers to virtually:

 

  • View homes
  • Meet with mortgage professionals
  • Consult with their agent throughout the process

 

All of this can happen within the required safety protocols, so real estate professionals are continuing to help families make important moves.

 

3. Buyers understand that mortgage rates are a key component when determining their monthly mortgage payments. Mortgage interest rates are very close to all-time lows and afford today’s purchaser the opportunity to save tens of thousands of dollars over the lifetime of the loan.

 

 

 

Looking closely at the third reason, we can see that there’s a big difference between purchasing a house last December and purchasing one now (see chart below):

 

 

 

Bottom Line

Many families have decided not to postpone their plans to purchase a home, even in these difficult times. If you need to make a move, let’s connect today so you have a trusted advisor to safely and professionally guide you through the process.

 

Get in touch with us today to discuss your situation and our local regulations, so you don’t have to put your real estate plans on hold.

 

queens real estate

 

 

Sources: 

 

Keeping Current Matters, Inc

 

----

 

Tayeb Group has been proudly serving the Queens, Nassau, and Suffolk county real estate markets since 2004. 

 

 

Do you need help with the purchase or sale of your home in Queens, Nassau, or Suffolk? Get in touch with us today for all your real estate needs at (718) 606-9050 or contact us here. 

April 14, 2020

How Technology Is Enabling the Real Estate Process in the Age of Coronavirus

 

technology is enabling the real estate process in the age of Coronavirus

 

Today's everyday reality is pretty different than it looked just a few weeks ago. We’re learning how to do a lot of things in new ways, from how we work remotely to how we engage with our friends and neighbors. Almost everything right now is shifting to a virtual format. One of the big changes we’re adapting to is the revisions to the common real estate transaction, which all vary by state and locality. Technology, however, is making it possible for many of us to continue on the quest for homeownership, an essential need for all.

 

Here’s a look at some of the elements of the process that are changing (at least in the near-term), due to stay-at-home orders and social distancing, and what you may need to know about each one if you’re thinking of buying or selling a home sooner rather than later.

 

virtual real estate consultations

 

1. Virtual Consultations – Instead of heading into an office, you can meet with real estate and lending professionals through video chat. Whether it’s your first initial needs analysis as a buyer or your listing appointment as a seller, you can still get the process started remotely and create a plan together. Your trusted advisor is still on your side.

 

Virtual home Showings

 

2. Home Searches & Virtual Showings – According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the Internet is one of the three most popular information sources buyers use when searching for homes. Your real estate agent can send you listing information and help you request a virtual showing when you’re ready to start looking. This means you can virtually walk through the homes on your wish list while keeping your family safe. As a seller, you can still have virtual open houses and virtual tours too, so as not to miss those buyers looking to find a home right now.

 

electronic Document Signing

 

3. Document Signing – Although this is another area that varies by state, today more portions of the transaction are being done digitally. In many areas, your agent or loan officer can set up an account where you can upload all of the required documents and sign electronically right from your computer.

 

4. Sending Money – Whether you need to pay for an appraisal or submit closing costs, there are options available. Depending on the transaction and local regulations, you may be able to pay by credit card, and most banks will also allow you to wire funds from your account. Sometimes you can send a check by mail, and in some states, a mobile escrow agent will pick up a check from your home.

 

virtual closings

 

5. Closing Process – Again, depending on your area, a mobile notary may be able to bring the required documents to your home before the closing. If your state requires an attorney to be present, check with your legal counsel to see what options are available. Also, depending on the title company, some are allowing drive-thru closings, which is similar to doing a transaction at a bank window.

Although these virtual processes are starting to become more widely accepted, it does not mean that this is the way things are going to get done from now on. Under the current circumstances, however, technology is making it possible to continue much of the real estate transaction today.

 

Bottom Line

If you need to move today, technology can help make it happen; there are options available. 

 

Get in touch with us today to discuss your situation and our local regulations, so you don’t have to put your real estate plans on hold.

 

queens real estate

 

 

Sources: 

Keeping Current Matters, Inc

National Association of REALTORS®

 

----

 

Tayeb Group has been proudly serving the Queens, Nassau, and Suffolk county real estate markets since 2004. 

 

Do you need help with the purchase or sale of your home in Queens, Nassau, or Suffolk? Get in touch with us today for all your real estate needs at (718) 606-9050 or contact us here. 

April 1, 2020

The #1 Thing You Can Do Now to Position Yourself to Buy a Home This Year

Get preapproved online to buy a home

 

The last few weeks and months have caused a major health crisis throughout the world, leading to a pause in the U.S. economy as businesses and consumers work to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The rapid spread of the virus has been compared to prior pandemics and outbreaks not seen in many years. It also has consumers remembering the economic slowdown of 2008 that was caused by a housing crash. This economic slowdown, however, is very different from 2008.

 

One thing the experts are saying is that while we’ll see a swift decline in economic activity in the second quarter, we’ll begin a sharp rebound in the second half of this year. According to John Burns Consulting:

 

“Historical analysis showed us that pandemics are usually V-shaped (sharp recessions that recover quickly enough to provide little damage to home prices), and some very cutting-edge search engine analysis by our Information Management team showed the current slowdown is playing out similarly thus far.”  

 

Given this situation, if you’re thinking about buying a home this year, the best thing you can do right now is use this time to get pre-approved for a mortgage, which you can do from the comfort of your home. Pre-approval will help you better understand how much you can afford so that you can confidently do the following two things when you’re ready to buy:

 

1. Gain a Competitive Advantage

Today’s low inventory, like we’ve seen recently and will continue to see, means homebuyers need every advantage they can get to make a strong offer and close the deal. Being pre-approved shows the sellers you’re serious about buying a home, which is always a plus in your corner.

 

2. Accelerate the Homebuying Process

Pre-approval can also speed-up the homebuying process so you can move faster when you’re ready to make an offer. Being ready to put your best foot forward when the time comes maybe the leg-up you need to cross the finish line first and land the home of your dreams.

 

get pre-approval online to buy a home in 2020

 

Bottom Line

Pre-approval is the best thing you can do right now to be in a stronger position to buy a home when you’re ready. Let’s connect today to get the process started.

 

----

TAYEB GROUP is a leading full-service real estate brokerage and your guide to the BEST real estate Queens, Nassau, & Suffolk. 

 

 

 

Do you need help with the purchase or sale of your home in Queens, Nassau, or Suffolk? Get in touch with us for all your real estate needs at (718) 606-9050 or contact us here

March 26, 2020

Don’t Let Frightening Headlines Scare You

anxiety over coronavirus and economy

 

There’s a lot of anxiety right now regarding the coronavirus pandemic. The health situation must be addressed quickly, and many are concerned about the impact on the economy as well.

 

Amidst all this anxiety, anyone with a megaphone – from the mainstream media to a lone blogger – has realized that bad news sells. Unfortunately, we will continue to see a rash of horrifying headlines over the next few months. Let’s make sure we aren’t paralyzed by a headline before we get the full story.

 

When it comes to the health issue, you should look to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most reliable information.

 

Finding reliable resources with information on the economic impact of the virus is more difficult. For this reason, it’s important to shed some light on the situation. There are already alarmist headlines starting to appear. Here are two such examples surfacing this week.

 

1. Goldman Sachs Forecasts the Largest Drop in GDP in Almost 100 Years

 

It sounds like Armageddon. Though the headline is true, it doesn’t reflect the full essence of the Goldman Sachs forecast. The projection is actually that we’ll have a tough first half of the year, but the economy will bounce back nicely in the second half; GDP will be up 12% in the third quarter and up another 10% in the fourth.

 

This aligns with research from John Burns Consulting involving pandemics, the economy, and home values. They concluded:

 

“Historical analysis showed us that pandemics are usually V-shaped (sharp recessions that recover quickly enough to provide little damage to home prices), and some very cutting-edge search engine analysis by our Information Management team showed the current slowdown is playing out similarly thus far.”

 

The economy will suffer for the next few months, but then it will recover. That’s certainly not Armageddon.

 

2. Fed President Predicts 30% Unemployment!

 

That statement was made by James Bullard, President of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. What Bullard actually said was it “could” reach 30%. But let’s look at what else he said in the same Bloomberg News interview:

 

“This is a planned, organized partial shutdown of the U.S. economy in the second quarter,” Bullard said. “The overall goal is to keep everyone, households and businesses, whole” with government support.

According to Bloomberg, he also went on to say:

 

“I would see the third quarter as a transitional quarter” with the fourth quarter and first quarter next year as “quite robust” as Americans make up for lost spending. “Those quarters might be boom quarters,” he said.

 

Again, Bullard agrees we will have a tough first half and rebound quickly.

 

Bottom Line

There’s a lot of misinformation out there. If you want the best advice on what’s happening in the current housing market, let’s talk today.

 

----

TAYEB GROUP is a leading full-service real estate brokerage and your guide to the BEST real estate Queens, Nassau, & Suffolk. 

 

 

Do you need help with the purchase or sale of your home in Queens, Nassau, or Suffolk? Get in touch with us for all your real estate needs at (718) 606-9050 or contact us here

Jan. 17, 2020

January 2020 Housing Market Update for New York

 

A look at Queens, Nassau, and Suffolk housing markets in 2019, projections for 2020 home prices, mortgage rates, affordability & more. 

 

We sit down to answer the inevitable question on everyone's mind: "how's the 2020 real estate market?" We examine the New York housing market - more specifically the Queens, Nassau and Suffolk county markets. We also explore some of the core challenges and opportunities likely to impact buyers and sellers in 2020. 

 

 

OVERVIEW 

The forecast for the 2020 housing market looks promising due to limited inventory (especially at the more affordable, entry-level price ranges), low-interest rates, and Millennials in a major home-buying phase.

 

The lower supply of homes will continue to drive home prices higher and on the demand side, lower rates, and an influx of ready and able buyers will fuel market activity. 

 

2020 PROJECTIONS - Mortgage Rates and Home Prices 

 

Industry experts at the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the Mortgage Bankers Association(MBA), Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac all forecast mortgage rates to remain stable throughout 2020

Furthermore, forecasts from six different expert entities point to improving home values through 2020, with four of them seeing price appreciation increasing at a greater pace than it did in 2019. (Projections by CoreLogicFannie Mae, Ivy Zelman’s “Z Report”, the National Association of Realtors (NAR), Freddie Mac, and the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA).

 

 

 

 

KEY INDUSTRY INSIGHTS 

 

"First-time homebuyers continue to represent a large part of the activities in the housing market. In Q3 (2019), they represented 39 percent of all buyers in the single-family housing market and 55 percent of all purchase money borrowers. That means 39 percent of the customers of realtors and 55 percent of the purchase customers of mortgage lenders are first-time homebuyers." Genworth Mortgage Insurance

 

 "A new TransUnion (NYSE: TRU) analysis projects at least 8.3 million first-time homebuyers will enter the mortgage market between 2020 and 2022. That number could climb to as high as 9.2 million if economic growth exceeds expectations. Both growth projections mark a significant acceleration from the 7.6 million first-time homebuyers added in the last three-year period (2016-2018)." TransUnion 

 

 

The Challenge First-time Homebuyers Will Face

Most first time buyers don't understand the home buying process and financing options well enough to participate in the market. 

 

The Challenge Housing Market Will Face  

Lack of housing shortage has become the housing market’s “chokepoint,” driving costs of living higher. 

 

Consider this, "the number of single-family homes for sale dropped to 1.45 million in November, the lowest level for that month in a data series that goes back to 1982, Yun said. The U.S. has added 96.5 million people in the intervening years."

 

One of the reasons the construction industry hasn’t returned to pre-crash levels is a shortage of available qualified workers. (supply and demand!) 

 

TO RECAP 

The 2020 real estate market looks healthy (more moderate) and strong enough for Americans to continue to capitalize on the homeownership opportunities that come with low-interest rates.

 

TAKEAWAY

If you are wondering how the 2020 housing market is going to impact your specific area or buying or selling decision, get in touch with us today.

 

For first-time buyers, 2020 presents excellent conditions or homeownership. If you have had any thoughts of buying a home this year, get in touch with a local market expert to understand the home buying process AND a mortgage banker to explore your financing options. 

 

 

----

TAYEB GROUP is a leading full-service real estate brokerage and your guide to the BEST real estate Queens, Nassau, & Suffolk. 

 

 

Do you need help with the purchase or sale of your home in Queens, Nassau, or Suffolk? Get in touch with us for all your real estate needs at (718) 606-9050 or contact us here

 

Dec. 23, 2019

Gifts and Gadgets for Every Room in the House

 

 

Are you searching for new and innovative gift ideas this holiday season? If so, check out our list of the hottest home technology offerings. We’ve selected a few of our favorites for every room in the house.

 

These smart systems and devices add comfort, convenience, and a “cool factor” that will delight your friends and family.  So think about who you know that loves the latest gadgets … or add a few of these to your own wish list!

 

 

ENTRYWAY

Ensure the safety of your loved ones with these smart security upgrades.

 

Smart Lighting

Ring, a company best known for its video doorbells, has added smart lights to its series of integrated devices. The Ring Smart Light System includes motion sensors, pathlights, spotlights, and even step lights, which can be turned on and off using voice commands when paired with an Amazon Alexa device. Users may opt to receive a notification when motion is detected on the premises, and—if integrated with Ring security cameras—access a live video stream for an added layer of security. Systems start at $69.99.

 

 

Video Doorbell

Video doorbells have become an increasingly popular security enhancement for homes, and for a good reason. Homeowners can detect activity at their front door while away, view visitors via video stream, and communicate without opening the door. Since Ring released its first smart doorbell in 2013, a number of competitors have entered the market. The Nest Hello Video Doorbell has some unique features—like facial recognition, package detection, and pre-recorded quick responses—that place it near the top of the pack. Retails for $229.

 

Smart Lock

Smart locks are a great way to ensure your friends and family are never left out in the cold, and the August Smart Lock Pro+ Connect is among the most highly rated. It’s one of the easiest models to install because it pairs with an existing deadbolt. The Smart Lock Pro enables a user to lock and unlock their door remotely with an app on their phone. And with the auto-lock/unlock feature, it can be set to open automatically upon approach and relock after entry. Retails for $279.

 

 

 

LIVING ROOM

These fun and functional gifts are perfect for anyone who is big on style—but short on time.

 

Automated Planter

Caring for household plants is easier than ever with the latest advancements in technology. Perfect for frequent travelers or forgetful friends, the Dewplanter uses moisture in the air to water plants without manual intervention. Now nature lovers can enjoy the beauty and health benefits of houseplants without the hassle. Plus, for each unit sold, the company pledges to plant a tree somewhere it’s needed. Retails for $69.50.

 

Smart Art

Instead of buying your favorite art lover a single painting, why not give him or her 30,000? With the Meural Canvas, you can access an extensive collection of artwork from around the world to display digitally in your own home. Meural utilizes proprietary technology to deliver an anti-glare matte display that automatically adjusts to the lighting in the room. Personal artwork and photographs can be showcased, as well. Retails for $445 with annual membership.

 

 

Motorized Shades

Motorized window coverings aren’t new, but a lower price point and enhanced features have helped to boost their popularity. The latest Motorized Shades from Somfy can be preprogrammed to raise or lower at certain times of day or controlled on-demand via a remote, smartphone app, or voice command when paired with Amazon Alexa or Google Home. They can also be set to operate automatically in response to the amount of sunlight or temperature of the room. Contact a dealer for pricing.

 

 

KITCHEN

These kitchen gadgets make life a little easier and a lot more enjoyable. They’re perfect for your busiest friends and family members!

 

Pressure Cooker

Have you jumped on the multi-cooker bandwagon yet? If so, you know how fast and simple these multifunctional appliances make meal preparation. The InstantPot Duo is a pressure cooker, sauté pan, steamer, slow cooker, rice cooker, food warmer, and yogurt maker all-in-one. It reduces cooking time and lowers energy consumption. Who wouldn’t love one of these versatile tools? With numerous cookbooks and blogs devoted to InstantPot recipes, the meal options are virtually endless. Retails for $99.95.

 

Cocktail Machine

Cocktail connoisseurs will appreciate the ease and convenience of the Bartesian Premium Cocktail Machine. Listed among “Oprah’s Favorite Things” for 2019, the Bartesian mixes drinks with the touch of a button. Simply fill the canisters with base spirits, choose a cocktail capsule, and the machine does the rest. Now you can mix a margarita, whiskey sour, cosmopolitan, and other favorites as easily as you brew a cup of coffee. Retails for $349.

 

Smart Refrigerator

Kitchens are often called the “heart of the home,” and a new refrigerator from Samsung aims to be the hub. The Samsung Family Hub Refrigerator helps busy families stay organized. Grocery shopping becomes a breeze with built-in cameras that allow owners to peek inside their fridge from anywhere. The interactive touchscreen displays pictures, notes, and reminders for family members. And the integrated SmartThings app enables users to control smart devices and appliances from a central point. Base model starts at $3,099.

 

BEDROOM

Almost nothing beats a good night’s sleep. Help your loved ones wake up refreshed with these smart devices for the bedroom.

 

Baby Sleep Soother

As any parent knows, when your baby isn’t getting sleep, neither are you. Help everyone in the family catch some z’s with a Bubzi Co Soothing Owl. This cuddly creature plays lullabies while projecting a starry scene on the bedroom wall to calm young children and help them drift off to sleep. And for every purchase, Bubzi Co makes a donation to Postpartum Support International. Retails for $30.95.

 

Sunrise Alarm Clock

Know someone who hates getting up in the morning? Alarm clocks that utilize light instead of a noisy alarm can provide a more peaceful transition in and out of sleep. The Philips SmartSleep Connected Sleep and Wake-Up Light includes customizable sunrise and sunset simulation, guided breathing exercises, and sensors that track room conditions, like temperature, humidity, noise, and light. Retails for $199.95.

 

Smart Thermostat

Temperature fluctuations during the night can disrupt sleep. The Nest Learning Thermostat uses smart technology to track a user’s preferences and build a schedule around them. Homeowners can place one of its integrated sensors in their bedroom to maintain a consistent temperature throughout the night. And Nest thermostats cut energy consumption, so they’ll rest easier knowing they’re saving the planet and money on utility bills . Retails for $249.

 

BATHROOM

Bathrooms don’t have to be boring. Technology can add flair to the daily routine.

 

Waterproof Speaker

Music enthusiasts and podcast fans will enjoy streaming their favorites in the shower with a wireless waterproof speaker. The Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 2 is a mid-priced and versatile option that can go from the bath to the beach. It packs an impressive 13-hour battery life in a small, portable case that’s waterproof, dust-proof, and floatable. Retails for $99.99.

 

Digital Smart Scale

A scale isn’t an appropriate gift for everyone, but diet and fitness enthusiasts may appreciate the high-tech features available with the Withings Body+. It tracks weight, body water, and fat, muscle, and bone mass for up to eight users. It can also be set to display local weather and the previous day’s step count. Customized pregnancy and baby modes make this a suitable choice for a growing family, as well. Retails for $99.95.

 

Vanity TV Mirror

For a truly luxe bathroom addition, consider an integrated vanity television mirror. The Seura TV Mirror seamlessly incorporates video into a bathroom vanity. It’s vanishing glass technology makes it possible to view the television through a mirror. When turned off, the screen completely disappears. Add lighting or a custom frame to complete the look. Starts at $3,099 for a 19” display.

 

 

OUR GIFT TO YOU

Are you considering a permanent technology upgrade for your own home? Give us a call first! Buyer expectations and preferences vary depending on price point, architectural style, and neighborhood. We can help you determine how the enhancement will impact the value of your home before you make the investment.

 

______________________

TAYEB GROUP is a leading full-service real estate brokerage and your guide to the BEST real estate Queens, Nassau, & Suffolk. 

 

 

Do you need help with the purchase or sale of your home in Queens, Nassau, or Suffolk? Get in touch with us for all your real estate needs at (718) 606-9050 or contact us here

 

 

 

 

Nov. 19, 2019

5 Steps to Finding Your Next Home

 

 

Whether you’re a first-time buyer or a seasoned homeowner, shopping for a new home can feel daunting. In fact, 56% of buyers said that “finding the right property” was the most difficult step in the home buying process. 

 

Buying a home is a significant commitment of both time and money. And a home purchase has the power to improve both your current quality of life and your future financial security, so the stakes are high.

 

Follow these five steps—and complete the corresponding worksheet offered below—to assess your priorities, streamline your search, and choose your next home with confidence.

 

STEP 1: Set Your Goals and Priorities

 

The first step to finding your ideal home is determining WHY you want to move. Do you need more space? Access to better schools? Less maintenance? Or are you tired of throwing money away on rent when you could be building equity? Pinpointing the reasons why you want to move can help you assess your priorities for your home search. 

 

Don’t forget to think about how your circumstances might change over the next few years. Do you expect to switch jobs? Have more children? Get a pet? A good rule of thumb is to choose a house that will meet your family’s needs for at least the next five to seven years. Be sure to set your goals accordingly.

 

STEP 2: Determine Your Budget

 

Many financial professionals recommend following the “28/36 Rule” to determine how much you can afford to spend on a home. The rule states that you should spend no more than 28% of your gross monthly income on housing expenses (e.g., mortgage, taxes, insurance) and a maximum of 36% of your gross monthly income on your total debt obligations (i.e., housing expenses PLUS any other debt obligations, like car loans, student loans, credit card debt, etc.).

 

Of course, the 28/36 rule only provides a rough guideline. Getting pre-qualified or pre-approved for a mortgage BEFORE you begin shopping for homes will give you a much more accurate idea of how much you can borrow. Add your pre-approved mortgage amount to your downpayment to find out your maximum purchasing potential.

STEP 3: Choose a Location

 

When it comes to real estate, WHERE you choose to buy is just as important as WHAT you choose to buy.

 

Do you prefer a rural, urban, or suburban setting? How long of a commute are you willing to make? Which neighborhoods feed into your favorite schools? These decisions will impact your day-to-day life while you live in the home.

 

Another important factor to consider is how the area is likely to appreciate over time. Choosing the right neighborhood can raise the profit potential of your home when it comes time to sell. Look for communities that are well maintained with high home-ownership rates, low crime rates, and access to good schools, desired retail establishments, and top employers.

 

STEP 4: Decide Which Features You Need (and Want) in a Home

 

Start with the basics, like your ideal number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and square footage. Do you prefer a one-story or two-story layout? Do you want a swimming pool?

 

Keep in mind, you may not find a home with all of your “wants,” or even all of your “needs” … at least not at a price you can afford. The reality is, most of us have to make a few compromises when it comes to buying a home.

 

Some buyers will opt for a longer commute to get a larger, newer home in the suburbs. Others will sacrifice hardwood floors or an updated kitchen so that their kids can attend their desired school. 

 

If you’re faced with a tough choice about how or what to compromise in your home search, return to STEP 1. What were your original goals and motivations for moving? Reminding yourself of your true priorities can often provide the clarity that you need.

 

STEP 5: Meet with a Real Estate Agent

 

A good real estate agent can remove much of the stress and uncertainty from the home search process. From setting goals to securing a loan to selecting the best neighborhood to meet your needs, we will be there to assist you every step of the way.

 

And no one has more access to home listings, past sales data, or market statistics than a professional agent. We can set up a customized search that alerts you as soon as a new listing you might like goes live. Better yet, we get notified about many of the hottest homes even BEFORE they hit the market.

 

 

You might guess that the VIP service we provide is very expensive. Well, the good news is, we can represent you throughout the entire home buying process at NO COST to you. It’s true; the home seller pays a buyer agent’s fee at closing. So you can benefit from our time, experience, and expertise without paying a dime. It’s no wonder 87% of buyers choose to purchase their home with the help of an agent.

And although we’ve listed it here as STEP 5, the reality is, it’s never too early (or too late) to contact an agent about buying a home. Whether you plan to buy today, next month, or next year, there are steps you can (and should) be taking to prepare for your purchase.

 

Call us today to schedule a free consultation!


The above references an opinion and is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be financial advice. Consult a financial professional for advice regarding your individual needs.

 

homebuying process

 

______________________

 

TAYEB GROUP is a leading full-service real estate brokerage and your guide to the BEST real estate Queens, Nassau, & Suffolk. 

 

 

Do you need help with the purchase or sale of your home in Queens, Nassau, or Suffolk? Get in touch with us for all your real estate needs at (718) 606-9050 or contact us here

 

______________________

 

Sources:

 

  1. NAR 2019 Home Buyers & Sellers Generational Trends Report -
    https://www.nar.realtor/sites/default/files/documents/2019-home-buyers-and-sellers-generational-trends-report-08-16-2019.pdf
  2. Architectural Digest -
    https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/this-is-how-long-you-should-live-in-your-house-before-selling-it
  3. Investopedia -
    https://www.investopedia.com/terms/t/twenty-eight-thirty-six-rule.asp
  4. Money Talks News -
    https://www.moneytalksnews.com/20-clues-youre-buying-home-the-right-neighborhood/
Oct. 4, 2019

Everything You Need to Know About iBuyers? and the “Instant Cash Offer”

 

 

Everything You Need to Know About iBuyers
 and the “Instant Cash Offer”

 

Technology is changing the way we do almost everything, and real estate transactions are no exception. In fact, a new crop of tech companies wants to revolutionize the way we buy and sell homes. 

 

iBuyer startups like Opendoor, Offerpad, and Properly are rapidly expanding into new territories, and now established players, like Zillow, are starting to get in on the action. Also known as Direct Buyers, these companies use computer algorithms to provide sellers with a quick cash offer to buy their home.

 

While the actual market share of iBuyers remains small, their big advertising budgets have helped create a noticeable buzz in the industry. This has left many of our clients curious about them and how they work.

 

In this article, we explain their business model, weigh the pros and cons of working with an iBuyer, and share strategies you can use to protect yourself if you choose to explore this new option to buy or sell your home.

 

 

FIRST, HOW DOES THE iBUYER PROCESS WORK?

 

While each company operates a little differently, the basic premise is the same. A seller (or seller’s agent) completes a brief online form that asks questions about the size, features, and condition of the property. Some also request digital photos of the home. 

 

The iBuyer will use this information to determine whether or not the home fits within their “buy box,” or set of criteria that matches their investment model. They are generally looking for houses they can easily value and “flip.” In most cases, their ideal property is a moderately priced, single-family home located in a neighborhood with many similar houses. The property shouldn’t require any major renovations before listing. These qualities make it easier to assess value (lots of comparable sales data) and help to reduce risk and minimize carrying costs.

 

THE iBUYER PROCESS

 

Once the iBuyer has used their algorithm to determine the amount they are willing to pay, they will email an offer to the seller, usually within a few days. The offer should also disclose the company’s service fee, which is typically between 7% and 12% of the purchase price.

 

If the seller accepts, an in-person visit and inspection are scheduled. The iBuyer will ask for a reduction in price to cover any defects they find during the process. Once the sale closes, they will make the necessary updates and repairs and then resell the home on the open market.

 

 

WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF SELLING TO AN iBUYER?

 

Of course, the biggest benefit of selling your home to an iBuyer is convenience. For some homeowners, the stress and disruption of preparing and listing their home can feel overwhelming. And what busy family with kids and pets wouldn’t want to skip the hassle of keeping their house “show ready” for potential buyers? Additionally, many sellers like the predictability of a cash buyer and the flexibility to choose their closing date.

 

PROS AND CONS OF SELLING TO AN iBUYER

 

However, this added convenience does come at a cost. An iBuyer is an investor looking to make a profit. So their purchase offer is usually below true market value. When you tack on service fees of up to 12% and deductions for updates and repairs, studies show that sellers who work with iBuyers net a lower amount than those that list the traditional way. 

 

In fact, a MarketWatch investigation found that transactions involving iBuyers net the seller 11% less than if they would have sold their home with an agent on the open market. 

 

 

WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF BUYING FROM AN iBUYER?

 

Buying a home from an iBuyer is a lot like buying a home from any investor. The pros are that it’s usually clean, neutral, and moderately updated. You’ll often find fresh paint and modern finishes. And because it’s uninhabited (no one is living there), you don’t have to work around a seller’s schedule to see the home. 

 

However, there are some pitfalls to avoid when working with iBuyers. Speed is of the essence, so sometimes the renovations are rushed and the quality can suffer. Also, their investment margins don’t leave much room for negotiating a price reduction or additional repairs. That leaves buyers —who have already invested hundreds of dollars in an inspection—little recourse if any issues are uncovered.

 

 PROS AND CONS OF BUYING FROM AN iBUYER

 

That’s one of the reasons we always recommend viewing properties with an agent. During your visit, a real estate professional can point out any “red flags” at the home, provide background information about the neighborhood, and help you assess its true market value. That way, you don’t invest time and money in a high-risk or overpriced property. Safety is also a concern. Some companies allow buyers to access their homes via a smartphone app. While it may seem convenient, it provides an easy way for squatters and others to enter the home illegally. 

 

Luckily, since most iBuyers (and traditional sellers) pay a buyer agent’s commission, you can benefit from the guidance and expertise of a real estate professional … at no cost to you!

 

 

HOW CAN I PROTECT MYSELF IF I CHOOSE TO WORK WITH AN iBUYER?

 

While it may seem like the “quick and easy” way to go, working with an iBuyer can present some unique challenges. For example, they are notorious for presenting a strong initial purchase offer and then whittling it down with a long list of costly updates and repairs once they complete their inspection. And unlike a traditional buyer who is incentivized to make a deal work, iBuyers can easily walk away if you don’t meet their demands.

 

Just like you wouldn’t go to court without a lawyer, you shouldn’t enter into a real estate transaction without an advocate to represent you. Having a professional agent on your side can be especially important when negotiating with an iBuyer. Remember, they employ sophisticated representatives and a team of lawyers who are focused on maximizing their profits, not yours. You need someone in your corner who has the skills and knowledge to ensure you get a fair deal and who understands the terms of their contracts, so you don’t encounter any unpleasant surprises along the way.

 

Overall, we think the emergence of new technology that helps to streamline the real estate process is exciting. And if we believe a client can benefit from working with an iBuyer, we present it as an option. But there is—inevitably—a cost to the convenience. After all, most iBuyers eventually list the properties they acquire on the open market, which is still the best place to find a buyer if you want to maximize the sales price of your home.

 

 

EXPLORE YOUR OPTIONS

 

Do you want to learn more about iBuyers and other options currently available in our area to buy or sell your home? We can help you determine the best path, given your unique circumstances. Contact us to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation!

 

60-SECOND HOME VALUATION ANALYZER

 

______________________

TAYEB GROUP is a leading full-service real estate brokerage and your guide to the BEST real estate Queens, Nassau, & Suffolk. 

 

 

Do you need help with the purchase or sale of your home in Queens, Nassau, or Suffolk? Get in touch with us for all your real estate needs at (718) 606-9050 or contact us here

______________________

 

 

Sources:

 

  1. The Dallas Morning News -
    https://www.dallasnews.com/business/real-estate/2019/07/11/so-called-ibuyer-real-estate-firms-pitch-programs-to-buy-your-house-help-you-hunt-for-another/
  2. MarketWatch -
    https://www.marketwatch.com/story/selling-your-home-to-an-ibuyer-could-cost-you-thousands-heres-why-2019-06-11
  3. Forbes -
    https://www.forbes.com/sites/alyyale/2019/08/16/study-shows-ibuyers-cost-home-sellers-thousands-is-convenience-worth-the-price/#697ac0c42269
  4. US News & World Report -
    https://realestate.usnews.com/real-estate/articles/what-to-expect-when-buying-a-home-from-an-ibuyer
  5. Inman -
    https://www.inman.com/2019/09/11/police-arrest-couple-found-squatting-in-opendoor-home-with-their-kids/
Sept. 14, 2019

Newly Renovated 2BR Condo in Woodside Queens

 

COMING SOON - An updated 2 bedroom, 1 bath condo in the heart of Woodside, Queens! This beautiful condo offers modern living with the convenience of a central location - close to public transportation, shopping, banking, parks, schools and more.

BEST part - low taxes and common charge make it an affordable investment. Contact us at 718.606.9050 to schedule a private showing today.  

 

______________________

TAYEB GROUP is a leading full-service real estate brokerage and your guide to the BEST real estate Queens, Nassau, & Suffolk. 

 

 

Do you need help with the purchase or sale of your home in Queens, Nassau, or Suffolk? Get in touch with us for all your real estate needs at (718) 606-9050 or contact us here

______________________

 

 

 

Aug. 22, 2019

5 Step Strategy for Downsizing Your Home

 

In our “bigger is better” culture, there’s an expectation that each home should be larger and grander than the last. But life changes like divorce, kids leaving for college, or even the simple act of growing older can prompt us to find a smaller home that better suits our shifting needs and lifestyle.

 

In fact, the advantages of downsizing are being increasingly recognized. A “tiny house movement” has gained passionate advocates who appreciate the benefits of living simply at any age and stage of life. Not only does a smaller home typically cost less, it also takes less time and effort to maintain.

 

Whatever your reasons are for downsizing, the process can seem overwhelming. That’s why we’ve outlined five steps to guide you on your journey. And in the end, we hope you’ll find that less is more … more comfort, more security, and more time and energy to spend on the activities and the people that you love.   

 

 

5 STEPS TO DOWNSIZING SUCCESS

 

1. Determine Your Goals and Limitations

The first step is to figure out your goals for your new living environment. Do you want to live closer to family? Are you hoping to cut down on home maintenance? Are you looking for a community with certain amenities?

 

You should also consider any limitations that will impact the home you choose. For example, are stairs an issue? Do you need access to medical care? In the case of divorce, are there child-custody issues you need to take into account? 

 

Estimate how long you plan to stay in your new home. Do you expect your needs to change during that time?

 

 

Make a “wish list” of features and prioritize them from most to least important. If you’d like any assistance with this process, give us a call! We’d be happy to sit down with you for a free consultation. We can also help you assess the value of your current home so you can set a realistic budget for your new one.

 

2. Find the Perfect New Home

Once you’ve established your “wish list,” we can begin the search for your new home. As local market experts, we know the ins and outs of all the top communities in our area. We can help you determine the neighborhood and type of home that will best fit your wants and needs. 

 

From family neighborhoods to retirement communities, we serve clients in all stages of life. If you or a loved one are in need of extended support, we can also share our knowledge of the assisted living facilities in town and help you identify those that offer the optimal level of care.

 

Are you planning to relocate out of town? We can refer you to a trusted real estate professional in your target area who can help you with your search.

 

3. Sell Your Current Home

If you’re ready to sell your current home, we’ll begin the process of preparing to list it as we search for your new one. 

 

We have a special interest in helping homeowners who are facing major life transitions, and we offer a full-service real estate experience that aims to remove as much of the stress and hassle of selling your home as possible. We also understand that many of our clients choose to downsize for financial reasons, so we employ tactics and strategies to maximize the potential sales revenue of your home.

 

 

We do this by employing our proven three-part approach, which focuses on optimum preparation, pricing, and promotion. As part of that plan, we invest in an aggressive marketing strategy that utilizes online and social media platforms to connect with consumers and offline channels to connect with local real estate agents. This ensures your property gets maximum exposure to prospective buyers.

 

4. Sort and Pack Your Belongings

Even before you find your new home, you can begin preparing for your move. A smaller home means less space for your furniture and other possessions, so you will need to decide what to keep and what to sell or donate. Sorting through an entire house full of belongings will take time, so begin as early as possible. 

 

Parting with personal possessions can be an extremely emotional process. Start with a small, unemotional space like a laundry or powder room and work your way up to larger rooms. Focus on eliminating duplicates and anything you don’t regularly use. If you have sentimental pieces, family heirlooms, or just useful items you no longer need, think about who in your life would benefit from having them. For large collections, consider keeping one or two favorite pieces and photographing the rest to put in an album.

 

Make sure the items you keep help you achieve the goals you outlined in Step 1. For example, if you want a home that’s easier to clean, cut down on knickknacks that require frequent dusting. If you’re moving to be closer to your grandchildren, choose the shatterproof plates over the antique china.

 

Allow yourself time to take breaks if you start to feel overwhelmed. If you’re helping a loved one with a move, try to be a patient listener if they want to stop and share stories about particular items or memories throughout the process. This can be therapeutic for them and an opportunity for you to learn family history that may otherwise have been forgotten.

 

5. Get Help When You Need It

Moving is stressful in any situation. But if you’re downsizing due to health issues or a major life change, it can be an especially tough transition. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.

 

Seek out friends and family members who can assist with packing and decluttering. If that’s not an option, or if you need additional help, consider hiring a home organizer, full-service moving company, or even a senior move manager, which is a professional who assists older adults and their families with the physical and emotional aspects of relocation. You can find one accredited by the National Association of Senior Move Managers at https://www.nasmm.org/find/index.cfm.

 

If financial constraints are holding back, let us know. We can help you explore the possibility of tapping into the equity in your current home now. That way you can afford to get the assistance you need to make your transition as smooth as possible.

 

 

ARE YOU LIVING YOUR BEST LIFE?

If your current home no longer suits your needs, maybe it’s time to consider a change. We would love to help you explore your options. Contact us today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.

 

 

______________________

 

TAYEB GROUP is a leading full-service real estate brokerage and your guide to the BEST real estate Queens, Nassau, & Suffolk. 

 

 

Do you need help with the purchase or sale of your home in Queens, Nassau, or Suffolk? Get in touch with us for all your real estate needs at (718) 606-9050 or contact us here

 

 

______________________

 

 

Sources:

 

  1. The Tiny Life -
    https://thetinylife.com/what-is-the-tiny-house-movement/
  2. My Move -
    https://www.mymove.com/moving/senior-guide-downsizing/
  3. Daily Caring -
    https://dailycaring.com/5-tips-to-downsizing-for-seniors-keepsakes-mementos/
  4. National Association of Senior Move Managers -
    https://www.nasmm.org