We’re here for You! Virtually!

We have so many tools available like Facetime, Virtual Video home tours, E-signatures, and many more no contact options to keep our clients comfortable and safe during this climate!

As agents and people our main goal has always been to help our community and lend a helping hand wherever possible. You can always count on us to answer the phone- we are always open to answer any questions you have, in real estate and beyond. Please do not hesitate to call, we are here to be a resource to you!

30-Year Mortgage Rate Drops Again, Down to 3.33%

“Rates dropped for the second week in a row due to “improvements in market liquidity and sentiment,” says Freddie Mac economist.” – FloridaRealtors.org

MCLEAN, Va. – Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey for this week found declines for the second week in a row.

This week, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.33%, which is down from last week’s 3.5%. It averaged a 0.7 point for this week; a year ago, the 30-year FRM averaged 4.08%.

“Mortgage rates have drifted down for two weeks in a row and that drop reflects improvements in market liquidity and sentiment,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.

Khater says the “market has stabilized relative to prior weeks (and) homebuyer demand has declined in response to current economic conditions. The good news is that the pending economic stimulus is on the way and will provide support for both consumers and businesses.”

The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.82% with an average 0.6 point, down from last week when it averaged 2.92%. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.56%.

Adjustable-rate mortgages (5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid ARM)) averaged 3.40% with an average 0.3 point, up from last week when it averaged 3.34%. A year ago at this time, the 5-year ARM averaged 3.66 percent.

© 2020 Florida Realtors® (All Credit to FloridaRealtors.org for this article)

 

How We Can Work with Clients During this Challenging Time!

  It is hard to say what our future will look like in real estate or for that matter anything in our world, post this pandemic. While there is a lot of “bad” to focus on, I am really trying to focus on any positives that may come out of this time.   I am certain for many of us, the time at home with our children, has provided us with opportunities that we most definitely did not prioritize in the past. Realtors are constantly “on” – responding to clients, conducting searches, showing property, coordinating towards closings, educating ourselves, sharing information with our clients and prospects and so on.    So, to “have” to slow down has been actually wonderful.

I am spending time doing things with my son that I just hadn’t found the time – we played checkers, twister and even taught him how to cook (even though it is most definitely not my forte).

As for business – when I slow my mind down and really pay attention to the calls we are receiving – I realize that our clients, friends, prospects DO rely on us for real estate guidance.   I think this has always been there, but I just didn’t slow down to realize it.

Today a prospect called and asked us to list one of his homes for rent.  He had been listed as for sale by owner and hadn’t received calls – the truth is for this one, I analyzed how he was marketing the home and his price point and gave him guidance rather than taking the listing.  Why? Because his margins are very tight and I felt that I could help him without his having to pay an agent for this rental – so he reduced to the number I suggested based upon comps and I had him reorder his photos, remove some photos, alter his write up and voila – the phone started ringing. 

We are here to help – give guidance, be supportive, educate and be a resource for all.  As a thank you for helping him with his rental listing…. And unbeknownst to me…he has another property that he wants us to put up for sale.

For my fellow Realtors, be a trusted resource, offer guidance, continue your education so you can continue to be an expert.  Now is the time when you can create some blogs, record videos, etc. and work to share your knowledge.

By: Amy Snook

Fed Slashes Interest Rates Near Zero, Eases Lending Rules- Florida Realtors

“In addition to a full-percent interest rate cut, the Fed will take other stimulus steps, saying COVID-19 “weighs on economic activity and poses (economic) risks.” The move should benefit adjustable rate mortgages, credit cards and other short-term loans.”

“The Federal Reserve took emergency action Sunday and slashed its benchmark interest rate by a full percentage point to nearly zero (0% to 1/4%) and announced it would purchase more Treasury securities to encourage lending to try to offset the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. The central bank said the effects of the outbreak will weigh on economic activity in the near term and pose risks to the economic outlook. The central bank said it will keep rates at nearly zero until it feels confident the economy has weathered recent events.

The Fed also said it will purchase $500 billion of Treasury securities and $200 billion of mortgage-backed securities to smooth over market disruptions that have made it hard for banks and large investors to sell Treasuries.”

Read more

Three New Listings in May! from the All About Florida Homes Team

May has been a busy month so far for our team! It’s a great time to list a home in Palm Beach County (check out why we think so in our most recent Market Report here.)

 

We have three homes just hitting the market. Take a look at…

This 2/2 condo in Lantana, and its breathtaking water views in all directions:

(Get more details here.)

 

…Or this custom built 4 bed / 2.5 bath home is nestled in a manned, gated, Boynton Beach community:

(Get more details here.)

 

…Or this adorable 2 /1 cottage is located in East Delray Beach right off of Atlantic Avenue:

(Get more details here.)

 

Get in touch with us if you – or someone you know – would like more info about any of these homes! You can also see all of our featured properties here. We’re at (561) 571-2289!

 

 

Buying a home in Boca. When do we need a real estate appraisal?

We got this great question from someone we met recently at a networking function.

We’re going to buy a condo in Boca. When do we need a real estate appraisal? 

Here’s the low-down!

If you are a buyer getting a mortgage, your lender is going to require an appraisal. The lender will order the appraisal.

Either the listing agent, or the buyer’s agent (or both, but at the very least one) needs to meet the appraiser at the property for the appraisal appointment. It’s important that someone knowledgeable be there to answer questions and point out the features.

If the appraiser is open to it, the Realtor can also talk about comps (comparable sales) and help the appraiser understand the current market area. Some appraisers come from out of area, so that last item is rather important.

Based upon the appraisal results, we will help you to know if your offer or your price needs to be changed or adjusted.

If you’re a buyer paying cash, you are not required to have an appraisal, but you can choose to get an appraisal. Why would you want to do that? To protect yourself on the value of the home. Realtors of the All About Florida Homes Team pride ourselves on the fact that we do in-depth competitive market analyses. So you can feel confident that you are getting a good value, and you don’t necessarily need an appraisal – but you’re still welcome to get one. Some of our clients do, and we support that decision.

We work with our cash buyers to help you determine if getting an appraisal is right for you. When the answer is yes, we walk you through each step of the process.

For our sellers, there are times when we recommend doing an appraisal for a listing. Perhaps the homes’s area or market may indicate a lot of variance between recent sold properties. Or, it might be new construction in an area where there isn’t a lot of new construction. In cases such as those, we may recommend an appraisal to avoid surprises. But whether you’re selling or buying, this is a strategic decision, and we would sit down and work together to come up with our plan based on your individual needs and situation.

Questions? Call us – Amy and Noreen, All About Florida Homes, Keller Williams Realty –  at (561) 571-2289. We’d love an opportunity to discuss your home selling or home buying goals.

And, we have some great resources here for you, too! If you’re interested in buying – now or in the future – you can search listings here – and start to familiarize yourself with the buying process and the market.

If selling may be in your future – or you’re just curious about what your home is worth today – you can request a no-obligation home value assessment here. 

Or, contact us at (561) 571-2289 – or via [email protected] – if we can provide you with any additional market data that will help inform your decisions! We are here to help!

Mortgage FAQs: Video Series with one of our favorite experts!

Ann Griffith of Capital Mortgage Funding joined Amy and Noreen recently to discuss all things mortgages! The pendulum has finally swung, and the market is very different than it was ten years ago. If you’d like to know if you can qualify to buy – and what to expect from the process, watch on!

? (If you find these helpful, please SUBSCRIBE to our channel while you’re there!)

In this video, Ann and Amy talk about how the mortgage market has finally normalized:

Next, Ann talks about something many of our buyers wonder about: What does the mortgage application process look like? (Ann consults the buyer to establish their goals. She helps them gather documents, and look at different types of loans might be a fit.) Watch to learn!

The next question: How much mortgage can I afford? … It’s important to determine in advance how much mortgage you can afford. Ann describes the process for coming to this number / her methods for helping buyers know.

Lastly, we are busting a myth! 🙂 We STILL often hear people ask: Do you still need 20% down to buy a home? (Spoiler alert: Not anymore! That’s old news. Today there are hundreds of great loan products on the market, and there is one that is a good fit for you.) Ann and her partner Ruby Teich help many of our clients find the right “mortgage fit.” Watch more here:

Thanks for watching! If you have questions about buying a home, our team is always here to offer you no-obligation advice!
Call us at (561) 571-2289.

If you’re interested in buying – now or in the future – you can search listings here – and start to familiarize yourself with the buying process and the market.

Referrals from You Are Special!

We’d like to take a moment to tell you how much we value referrals from you.

As real estate salespeople, we live for the joy and sense of accomplishment we feel when our client – a buyer or a seller – achieves his or her goal! The moment a buyer takes her keys… The excitement in the eyes of the sellers right after closing… This is our “why.”

When the person we have helped is a referral from someone in our sphere, that joy and accomplishment are truly magnified!

Please know that, when you send someone you care about to us, they will be well taken care of. Our combined years of experience in real estate – paired with our keen abilities to navigate each step of the buying or selling process expertly – will serve your loved one well.

For this reason, we ask you to think of us if someone you know mentions they may need to buy, sell, or rent in Palm Beach County. And, please give us a “heads up” when you refer someone to us, so we can thank you! We promise to deliver the white glove service we’ve come to be known for, and to leverage all of our knowledge and expertise to help your loved ones reach their goals.

If someone you know is interested in buying – now or in the future – they can search listings here – and start to get familiarized with the buying process and the market.

If selling is the goal – or if your referral is just curious about what their home is worth today – they can request a no-obligation home value assessment here.

Or, contact us at (561) 571-2289 – or via [email protected] – We are here to help!

What is Title Insurance – and Why Do You Need It?

Did you know that Amy Snook, one of our team’s leaders, is a licensed title agent?

Amy has more than 15 years of experience in the title business. So, she is uniquely poised to help our buyers and sellers navigate the closing process, and everything that leads up to this critical piece of the puzzle!

But, if you still don’t really “get” title insurance, what it is, and why you may need it… here’s a quick rundown for you:

Title insurance is a one time purchase. Factors like your contract, the county you are in and its norms will help determine who pays for it. It’s a fee you will see on the final closing statement.

It’s is an insurance (like the name says!). This policy is for life, and it insures that the people who are selling the home are legally able to sell you the home – that all mortgages, liens, judgements, encumbrances  that are attached to the property – are all paid off.

Why does this matter? It gives you the peace of mind that you legally have the right to own and enjoy that home, and that no one will come knocking one day and tell you you don’t!

Buyers sometimes ask “Do I have to have it?

… Do you legally have to have title insurance? The answer is no.. But as Realtors, we would never be involved in a transaction that doesn’t include it. Because, for the small one-time cost, you have peace of mind for life.

If you still have questions about title insurance, feel free to message us at [email protected] or call us at (561) 571-2289.

Want more details? Read more about this important subject here.

If you’re interested in buying – now or in the future – you can search listings here – and start to familiarize yourself with the buying process and the market!

VIDEO: BUY IN AN HOA COMMUNITY IN PALM BEACH COUNTY? – OR NO HOA?

Relocating to Palm Beach County? Is it better to choose a home with an HOA (homeowners association), or one without and HOA?

In this short video, Noreen reviews some pros and cons and offers some help with making this very personal decision. Check it out!

 

Want more info about neighborhoods? Read our tips here for evaluating which ones might be right your family!