4 Things to Know About Buying Real Estate Today

by November 11, 2009 • 2 comments

I have had a hard time focusing on what I want to discuss with you this week so I decided to share from one of my favorite Real Estate gurus, Barbara Corcoran who is a regular on The Today Show. I love her on so many levels but mostly because after making about straight D’s in high school and having over 20 jobs by age 23 she found her niche!!! I just love stories like that because it proves what I believe: that we all have a gift and how fun it is when we find it and share it. I guess I got a little side tracked with my happy talk so lets get to the Real Estate myths according to Barbara.

1. SELLERS TODAY ARE DESPERATE
This is not necessarily so and in fact only about 1 in 10 are in desperation. Buyers just naturally assume that if something has been on the market for 6 months or so then the seller is willing to take an even greater hit. It is her belief that a better question to be asking is what is the motivation? Are they being relocated and need to sell right away or do they just want to move up. So asking the question of why are they selling is more important than time on the market and other factors.

2. IT IS STUPID TO BUY BEFORE IT HITS THE BOTTOM
Barbara says,”That sounds really cool that you could time the market but the problem with that is as soon as the prices hit the very bottom they start going back up.” When it turns around most of the really good deals are picked over and people stampede the market and then prices go up quickly. Another factor right now that makes it a great time to buy is the interest rates are still great. However, they have inched up a little lately. I have noticed in our market in Panama City Beach the inventory for the lowest part of the market is more picked over than it was this time last year.

3. YOU CAN NOT BUY A HOME FOR LESS THAN 20% DOWN
That of course is absolutely not true, with FHA you only are required to put down 3.5% and in certain cases you can ask the seller to pay some closing cost especially if you add a little to the price to keep from coming so much out of pocket. Even if you have to buy mortgage insurance that is usually roughly 1 and 1/2 % and would still make your down payment around 5 %. I am excited that the tax credit has been extended and should help many people that have hesitated to go ahead and purchase their home while the inventory is good.

4. IT IS THE ABSOLUTE WORST TIME TO SELL
Of course that may be true depending on when you purchased your home and also where you are living. According to Barbara many areas are rebounding and already inching back up. Another very important thing to keep in mind is that if you are selling to move into another home you will more than make up for your loss over time with your new purchase at today’s pricing.

I really enjoy watching and reading Barbara Corcoran and glean some great stuff from her but I caution people to always take into account the area where you live. We have a different experience living on the coast and have something that many still find very appealing and valuable. It is impossible to make blanket statements about the Real Estate market so ask questions of your Realtor and trust their advise. It is a very exciting time in Real Estate and living in Panama City Beach gives us plenty to be thankful for whether prices are up or down. Thanks so very much for watching thebeachshow.com and know that we have so much fun bringing it to you.

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1 Janet Kramer November 17, 2009 at 10:09 am

Karen…I am a Realtor in Memphis and always enjoy your column. I also own a condo at Calypso and am excited about all the news surrounding that area, i.e., Pier Park, the new airport, etc…Janet K.

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2 karen Smith November 17, 2009 at 12:31 pm

Janet,
Thanks so very very much for your sweet comments. We have so much fun doing our little beach show and once I start the articles enjoy it but get a little nervous every week about what to write about. I usually try to address things that people have called and asked me about during the week. It is a very exciting time right now on the beach and there are great deals and lots of excited buyers. Again, you are so precious to take the time to brighten my day!!!!

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