Jill Finkelstein - Compass



Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 4/14/2019

Are you planning to move away from the bustle and frenzy of a major commercial city and want to settle in some peaceful, serene environment? If you answered yes, purchasing a home in suburban neighborhoods is probably on your to-do list already.

Buying a home is a substantial investment; therefore, it requires proper planning and careful considerations before jumping into it so as not to incur significant losses. There are many factors to consider before buying a home, especially in the suburbs, and highlighted below are some of the most crucial to be aware of: 

Parking space

One thing that most homebuyers want is enough space for their vehicles. In some suburban areas, there is ample space for street parking. However, in other places, the reverse is the case. If the home doesn't have a parking space or garage, you should look for street parking at various times of the day. The presence of none indicates that you should look for hidden parking. Some neighborhoods are served by rail service too but parking a car near the station to ease your commute might pose a challenge. Avoid the mistake of assuming you will always find parking.

Flooding risk

Some suburban areas are at risk of flooding. This risk is because there may be natural water sources that rise quickly when it rains heavily. Since the safety of both your family and your soon to be acquired property is a priority, it is essential to check for flooding risks before buying the home.

Need for renovation

Suburbs usually have a lot of older buildings and construction, which brings with it the need to renovate some homes when you purchase. If you do not have home renovations in your budget, find yourself a good home without the need for many improvements. However, if you do not mind making improvements, there is no harm in spending on your comfort and style choices.

Accessibility

Schools, shopping facilities, recreational centers, and other essential places may be a considerable distance from your home. Buying a home where these facilities are not readily available will not only isolate you, but it will incur more costs ongoing. Spend time researching the entire community before making such a move so that you know where to find services and shopping.

The condition of the structure and yard

You probably have a kind of structure in mind before going through a real estate site with home listings, which will help to narrow your search and ensure you get what you want. Many homebuyers choose the suburbs because of the tranquility and greenery — some want to tend to their gardens. If a suburban landscape is on your list, you should make sure the yard has enough space for a garden and a lawn you can craft to reflect your taste.

Discuss all your property needs—and desires—with your real estate agent to know what is on the market that meets your requirements.




Tags: Real Estate   homebuyers   suburbs  
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Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 4/7/2019

If you're planning to purchase a home in the near future, one thing's for sure: You've got your work cut out for you! However, when you finally find the house of your dreams, the time and effort will be more than worth it!

Your to-do list will include calculating how much you can afford to spend on a house, obtaining a pre-qualification letter from a mortgage lender, and eventually comparing loan estimates.

One of the first things home buyers usually need to do before getting too caught up in their real estate search is to check their credit score. Your credit report, which is basically a detailed profile of your credit history, plays a major role in your ability to get approved for a mortgage and obtain favorable interest rates. Consumers are entitled to get a free copy of their credit report once a year from the three major credit reporting companies: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.

Before applying for a mortgage, it's highly recommended that you check the accuracy of your credit report. If it contains mistakes, inaccuracies, or obsolete information, that could affect your ability to get a mortgage -- or obtain favorable interest rates and terms. Fortunately, errors can be disputed and corrected by the appropriate credit reporting company.

The Impact of Your Credit Score

The most widely used scoring system to determine a borrower's ability (and willingness) to stay current on loan payments is called a "FICO score." Depending on your credit history and bill paying habits, your FICO score can range from a low of 300 to a high of 850. If you're wondering how your FICO score stacks up against other homebuyers and consumers in the U.S., the median FICO score was recently in the neighborhood of 721 (although that number fluctuates). That means 50% of borrowers are above that score and 50% fall below that mark.

According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the best mortgage interest rates are generally offered to borrowers who have earned FICO scores in the mid- to high 700s. If your credit score falls between the high 600s and the low 700s, the interest rates available to you may be somewhat higher.

Those who are saddled with a credit rating below the mid 600s may have difficulty getting approved for a mortgage. If you're in that situation, your real estate agent or loan officer may suggest applying for an FHA loan rather that a conventional loan. Although FHA loans can be more expensive, the standards for getting approved are more lenient. These government regulated and insured loans also allow for a more affordable down payment of as little as 3.5 percent, as oppose to the "typical" down payment of between 10 and 15 percent.





Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 3/31/2019

Believe it or not, home sellers may encounter many expenses after they list their residences. These costs include:

1. Home Cleaning and Maintenance Costs

Before you start showing your residence to prospective buyers, it often is beneficial to clean your house. As such, you may need to purchase assorted cleaning supplies. Or, you can always hire a professional home cleaning company to help you enhance your house's overall appearance.

Don't forget about home maintenance expenses too. Remember, you'll want to do everything possible to improve your house's curb appeal to ensure your residence stands out to potential buyers. And if you budget for the costs associated with fixing damaged home siding or performing lawn care tasks, you may be better equipped than ever before to find cost-effective ways to bolster your home's curb appeal.

2. Home Repair Costs

After you accept a buyer's offer to purchase your home, the buyer likely will request a property inspection. And if an inspection reveals myriad home repairs are necessary, you may be required to spend money to complete these repairs. Otherwise, you could put your home sale in jeopardy.

Oftentimes, it is helpful to conduct a property inspection before you list your residence. This will enable you to assess your home with a professional inspector and identify any problems. Then, you can perform home repairs prior to listing your residence and reduce the risk of possible home selling delays down the line.

3. Moving Costs

Once you sell your home, you will need to relocate your belongings from your current address to a new location. Thus, you should consider the costs associated with moving boxes and packing supplies and budget accordingly.

Furthermore, you may want to hire a professional moving company to help you transport your belongings from Point A to Point B. If you review the prices of local moving companies, you can find an affordable option that matches your budget.

There are many costs that you may encounter as you proceed along the home selling journey. But if you work with a real estate agent, you can receive comprehensive property selling support. And as a result, you may be able to cut down on potential costs throughout the home selling cycle.

A real estate agent is committed to doing everything possible to help a seller achieve the best-possible results. Therefore, a real estate agent will learn about your home selling goals and create a personalized property selling strategy for you.

Plus, a real estate agent is happy to respond to any home selling concerns or questions. This housing market professional will go the extra mile to guarantee you can enjoy a seamless property selling experience. With assistance from a real estate agent, you can handle any potential problems that may arise during the house selling journey.

For home sellers, it usually is a good idea to budget for potential property selling expenses. If you put together a budget, you could boost the likelihood of enjoying a fast, profitable property selling experience.




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Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 3/24/2019

Selling a home may prove to be difficult, particularly for individuals who strive to maximize their day-to-day productivity. In many instances, the time and costs associated with listing a home, promoting it to potential buyers and performing other home selling tasks can add up quickly. But if you know how to act as a productive home seller, you should have no trouble maximizing the time and resources at your disposal.

What does it take to become a productive home seller? Here are three tips to help you maximize your productivity throughout the home selling process.

1. Remove Clutter

Clutter will only slow you down during the home selling cycle. As such, you'll want to do everything you can to minimize clutter prior to listing your residence.

Artwork, photographs and other personal mementos in your home should be placed in storage until you sell your residence. That way, you can free up space in your house, as well as make it easy for homebuyers to envision what life might be like if they acquire your residence.

Also, if you have items that you no longer need, don't hesitate to sell or donate these items. And if you own items that are broken or damaged, you should dispose of these items altogether.

2. Understand the Home Selling Process

When it comes to the home selling process, it pays to be diligent. If you understand what to expect before you list your house, you'll be better prepared than ever before to handle any home selling challenges that might come your way.

Furthermore, think about the buyer's perspective during the home selling cycle – you'll be glad you did. A homebuyer wants to find a home that delivers exceptional value. As a home seller, you'll want to do whatever you can to show a buyer that your house is the ideal choice.

For home sellers, it pays to consider what you'll need to do to promote your house to the right groups of potential buyers. If you plan ahead and learn about the home selling process, you can make informed choices that may help you get the best price for your residence.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent is committed to client satisfaction, and as a result, will go above and beyond the call of duty to help you maximize your productivity. This housing market professional will offer expert recommendations throughout the home selling journey to make it simple to achieve your desired results. Plus, he or she will set up home showings, keep you up to date about offers on your house and much more.

It helps to hire a real estate agent who understands the ins and outs of the housing market in your area. With this real estate agent at your side, you can quickly and effortlessly navigate the home selling cycle.

Stay productive as you sell your house – use the aforementioned tips, and you can increase the likelihood of a quick, seamless home selling experience.




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Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 3/17/2019

In recent years, the number of employees who work from home, at least some of the time, has increased to about 25 percent. This trend shows that companies are warming up to the idea of letting their employees work wherever they’re comfortable, and that a growing number of people are working on a freelance or contract basis.

Working from home, despite its many advantages, does pose some obstacles to productivity. Thus, time management and daily task setting are key to being as productive or more productive than you would be at the office.

In today’s article, we’re going to help you learn how to become more productive when you work from home so that you can meet your daily numbers while still enjoying the perks of working remotely.

Time management

One of the most difficult aspects of working from home is sticking to a schedule throughout the day. The home poses several distractions--kids, pets, TV, the refrigerator. Aside from the distraction factor, it’s easy to procrastinate when you don’t have a boss lurking around. There are several measures you can take while working at home to counter these factors.

First, make sure you set some ground rules for yourself and your family while working from home. Make sure everyone knows your work hours, including yourself. Stick to those hours by creating a daily routine. Everyone is different when it comes to keeping a planner.

Some people keep a simple task list in a notebook, while others create intricate planners that are color-coded and rife with stickers and reminders. Regardless of your method, make sure you have a physical reminder in front of you during the day that reminds you what you should be doing.

Routine is key to managing your time. While there will always be things that come up that we don’t plan for, having a foundation for your day is vital. Starting each day the same way is a good way to help yourself stick to your schedule. Some people go for a walk each morning, while others dive right into their work. Whichever you choose, make sure you do it consistently.

Creating a productive environment

Try to work in an office or spare room away from kids or pets and let your family know that you need to focus when you’re there.

If possible, set your phone to silent or “do not disturb” mode. Remove any distractions from the room that will tempt you to procrastinate. Things like the TV and snacks can easily steal your attention.

However, in this day of social media, it’s equally important to make sure you avoid procrastinating online as well. If you find yourself subconsciously navigating to Facebook or Reddit, try setting up an extension on your browser that limits your time on those sites to 10 minutes per day to help you stay on track.

A productive environment doesn’t have to be a barren one. Choose decorations and paint colors that work for you. You’ll want to feel comfortable in your work environment, and one of the perks of working from home is being able to customize any way that you like.

Finally, remember to take breaks. Many people who are able to work from home have a tendency to put work off until the last minute and then work feverishly to get everything done.




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Jill Finkelstein