John Colby


Posted by John Colby on 9/17/2017

Purchasing a home should be fun, memorable process. However, many homebuyers struggle with fears as they embark on the process of acquiring their dream homes.

Some of the most common homebuying fears include:

1. I will pay too much for a house.

Overspending on a house is a common fear among homebuyers nationwide.

If you pay too much for a house, you may struggle to afford the monthly payments for the duration of your mortgage. Perhaps even worse, your house may lose value over time. And if you eventually decide to sell your home, you may be forced to accept less than what you initially paid for it.

Ultimately, an informed homebuyer will understand the differences between a buyer's market and a seller's one. He or she will be able to determine whether a home is affordably priced and proceed accordingly.

An informed homebuyer also will know the importance of getting pre-approved for a mortgage. With a mortgage in hand, this homebuyer will understand exactly how much that he or she can spend on a house.

2. I'll wait too long to submit an offer on a residence.

If a homebuyer is uncertain about buying a particular house and waits too long to submit an offer, he or she risks missing out on this residence altogether.

Fortunately, there is a simple way to avoid this problem.

A homebuyer who knows what he or she wants to find in a dream home can narrow a home search. Then, if the homebuyer discovers a home that matches or exceeds his or her expectations, this individual can submit an offer right away.

Don't forget to submit a competitive offer, i.e. one that accounts for the needs of both a homebuyer and home seller, as well. A competitive offer will stand out from other proposals and increase a property buyer's chances of securing his or her dream residence.

3. I'll buy a home that will fail to maintain its long-term value.

What you pay for a home today is unlikely to remain the same over the course of several weeks, months or years. But a homebuyer who employs an expert home inspector can learn about a house's strengths and weaknesses and ensure a property is a viable long-term investment.

A home inspector will conduct an assessment of a house after a property seller accepts a buyer's proposal. At this point, an inspector will examine a house's interior and exterior and identify any potential issues. Lastly, a home inspector will issue a report with his or her findings, and a homebuyer will have a final opportunity to modify or rescind an offer on a house.

For homebuyers, it is important to work with a trusted home inspector Ė you'll be glad you did. This home inspector will go above and beyond the call of duty to evaluate a house before you finalize a home purchase.

Working with an experienced real estate agent may benefit a homebuyer too. With a top-notch real estate agent at your side, you can get the support you need to acquire a first-rate home that will maintain its value both now and in the future.




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Posted by John Colby on 9/10/2017

If youíre in the process of selling your home, your agent will most likely be making calls to you relating that she will be showing your home to potential buyers. While youíre probably excited to sell your home, thereís no doubt that home showings can happen at the worst possible times! Hereís some tips to help you prepare for any home showing in a hurry: 


Mop Up


Sweep up your kitchen and bathrooms Spot clean in any necessary areas to remove stains.   


Get Out Your Duster


Quickly wipe down any of your furniture, televisions, screens and other objects that really show dust in your home. You donít need to go crazy, just make sure that everything is clean.  


Clear Counters


Donít leave tons of stuff hanging around on your counters. Your counters should be wiped down and clear of clutter for your home showing. 


Make Your Bed


Heed your motherís advice and make your bed. Thereís nothing more unattractive at a home showing than beds that havenít been made or items strewn across the bedroom. If you have some time, take a look at your bedding and see if it looks presentable, as in free from rips and stains. If not, consider replacing the existing bedding for an even better impression. 


Vacuum 


Give your carpets a once over with the vacuum cleaner. This will pick up any surface dirt and make the carpets look, smell and feel fresher.


Empty The Trash


Empty all of your trash cans. Spray them down with a disinfectant spray so that thereís no lingering odors.   


Brighten It Up


When your home is being shown, the lights should be on. A bright home is an attractive home! 

Clean Your Dishes


Put all of your dirty dishes in the dishwasher. There shouldnít be any dirty dishes left out and around during a home showing. Also, you donít want any of your appliances running while potential buyers are visiting.  


Put Clothes Away


Your clothes should be loaded into the washer and dryer as well. No dirty (or clean) clothes should be lingering around the house. Potential buyers donít need to see the latest styles that youíre wearing!


Put Your Stuff Away 


Every room should be given a once over. Everything should be off of the floors, counters and furniture. This will make your home look very presentable and attractive to buyers. 


Although a home showing may seem overwhelming, buyers like to picture what your home will look like once theyíre the new occupants. The short amount of time that you spend on making your home look tidy can make a big difference in finding the right buyer for your property.




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Posted by John Colby on 9/3/2017

When you buy a home, you may wonder what the benefits of having your own realtor to represent you are. If youíre a first-time homebuyer, you probably will have a lot of questions. If youíre a second-time homebuyer you may still have a lot of questions! Buying a home can be a long, tedious process. Itís very helpful to know that you have a knowledgable realtor by your side to represent you and help you through the home buying process. If youíre looking to buy a home in a tough market, hiring your own realtor to represent you as a buyer is especially important. 


First, you should consider interviewing some prospective buyers agents in your area. Maybe you can get recommendations from friends and family as well. Learn what you can expect from a top realtor who will represent you as a buyer. 


Honesty Is The Best Policy


Your agent should be completely honest with you. While they canít tell you what you personally want in a home, they should give you every last disclosure. No agent should put a home value or their own commission above their clients. This means that thereís strict documentation that realtors must follow including a code of ethics and standards for practice. A realtor must uphold these promises.  


Judging honesty in a realtor can be difficult. An honest real estate agent will help you through the home search process, for example. This is a good place to start. If the realtor points out some of the potential issues that you may have as a buyer in a home, you can see that honesty is one of their main policies.


Good Communicator


A realtor should be in frequent communication with you. Even if your home search isnít active, they will check in, and see where youíre at in the process and if your needs have changed. 

Your realtor should alert you if offers have been made on properties that youíre interested in as well. Your buyerís agent should reply to texts, e-mails, or calls within a short time frame of receiving them. Having a realtor thatís on top of things for you is important when it comes to buying a home since, without their help and information, the perfect home could slip through the cracks for you.                  


Knowledge Of Rules, Regulations, And Best Practices


Your buyerís agent should have extensive knowledge of the real estate rules and regulations that are within your state. Each state has different practices when it comes to buying a home. Hiring a buyerís agent is especially helpful if you are unfamiliar with a state or city. Your agent will be well-informed on all of your responsibilities as a buyer, as well as how and when you should complete these tasks and signings throughout the entire home buying process.





Posted by John Colby on 8/27/2017

Stronger economic indicators can lead to more jobs, higher wages and house building expansion. A stronger economy can also lead to interest rate spikes. Inflation is another change to watch for as the economy strengthens.

Economic growth could cause your mortgage payments to balloon

Both rising interest rates and inflation can have an impact on your monthly mortgage payments. Inflation's impact on mortgages may be second hand, especially considering that inflation is generally caused by an increase in consumer spending.

Inflation is created when consumer demand outpaces supply. To offset the difference, retailers might increase the costs of goods. As the cost of goods rises, consumers may have less disposable income to turn to in order to pay their bills, including their mortgage.

Another element that can cause prices to rise is the cost of items like fuel and technology. For example, rising fuel costs can cause public transportation and shipping costs to go up. When this happens, prices on material goods may spike.

Dance between interest rates and residential mortgages

Interest rates have a more direct impact on mortgages. First time home buyers may have no choice but to pay higher monthly mortgages if interest rates go up. Because rising interest rates are generally viewed as favorable by lenders, rising interest rates could also spell larger opportunities for home shoppers to secure a mortgage.

Additionally, interest rates can significantly impact monthly mortgage levels for homeowners with an adjustable rate mortgage. It was this upward shift that had a negative impact on people who bought an owned houses just prior to the kickoff of the Great Recession. Anyone who has experienced an increase in her credit card interest rates knows how much rising interest rates can impact a monthly expense.

This is one of the downsides of rising interest rates for homeowners. Not only might homeowners see their monthly mortgage rise after interest rates go up, homeowners also might see their credit card bills go up.

Fortunately, there are steps that homeowners could take to offset both inflation and rising interest rates. Signing a low to moderate fixed mortgage is a good first start, if interest rates on the fixed mortgage are at competitive levels. That way, should interest rates rise, homeowners won't have to worry that their monthly mortgages will loom larger. They can also manage a more stable budget and better know where they stand financially should an unexpected event like a medical issue or a house repair arise.

Building cash reserves is another way that homeowners can offset inflation and rising interest rates. To take the jolt out of building cash reserves, homeowners can start small. For example, homeowners could start by depositing a quarter of their income tax returns into a separate, interest bearing account.

They could also use bonus checks and a portion of their commissions (for homeowners who work in sales) as cash reserves. The point is to keep building the savings. Eventually, the cash reserves might be used to purchase a new house or to make upgrades at a current home.




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Posted by John Colby on 8/20/2017

Although owning one or more dogs involves a long-term commitment of time, energy, and money, the vast majority of dog owners would have it no other way! While dog ownership isn't for everyone, few people can resist the unconditional love, playfulness, and companionship that dogs offer. If you grew up with dogs in your household and feel comfortable with them, chances are high that your home is never complete without one. Some people even get a second dog so that their first pet isn't lonely when the family is at work and school. Besides the joy of having an affectionate, four-legged companion in the house, the advantages of bringing a dog into the family are practically innumerable.

  1. Exercise: We all need regular physical activity to look and feel our best, but it's all too easy to come up with excuses for skipping a day or two. As most of us can attest to, a few days of exercise avoidance can easily turn into weeks or more of inactivity. However, since dogs require daily walks to relieve themselves and expend pent up energy, you're less likely to have a sedentary lifestyle when there's a dog in the family. Motivating us to take them for a walk and play with them, every day, is one of the countless ways dogs enhance our lives. They may even help us live longer and be healthier.
  2. Home security: Whether a dog is an intimidating German Shepherd or a fluffy, white Bichon Frise, they're still going to bark when they sense a stranger on your property. While small dogs aren't going to inspire terror in the hearts of would-be burglars, their barking has a similar effect to that of a security alarm or a motion-sensor floodlight. It's going to call attention to the potential intruder. Since one of a burglar's main objectives is to not be noticed, a barking dog -- of any size -- can be an effective deterrent.
  3. Benefits to kids: If you had a dog when you were growing up, you know what a source of joy and companionship they can be to a child. Dogs not only create fond memories for children, but they can also help teach responsibility, empathy, and compassion for other living beings.
Although dogs can bring a lot of joy to you and your family, they can also be potentially destructive, overly aggressive, and noisy. If you've ever watched the TV show The Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan, you know how troublesome some dogs with behavioral problems can be. That's why it's important to select your dog from a reputable breeder, rather than a so-called "puppy mill," and train them properly, from day one. It also pays to research the temperament of different breeds before you decide which one would be the best match for you and your family. Some breeds are known to be high strung, while others tend to be more mellow and gentle -- a trait that's especially important with young children. It's also helpful to know in advance whether a dog sheds, whether it's prone to any medical conditions, and how much exercise it needs on a daily basis. If you don't have experience training or house breaking a dog, there are plenty of videos, books, and articles available on the Internet to provide you with the knowledge and skills to be a successful dog owner. Dog training classes are also available in most communities.







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